In which I use the ‘p’ word under duress

Source: perfect gift 1 by lusi via stock.xchng

But first, a big congratulations to the winner of our Solace & Grief giveaway…*drumroll*…Mary Preston! To win, Mary had to tell us what mysterious door she’d like to open and where it would lead, and this was her comment:

My Grandmother had a back room we were never allowed to enter. It was kept locked & no-one would say why.  A solid old door locked with a key that lay heavily in my hand. As a child it was always a source  of intrigue for an overactive imagination. I think now it would just lead me to – the skeletons in the closet.

Mm, delicious! Mary, please send me your mailing address and I’ll post the book out to you.

For those who missed out, don’t forget that we’re giving away a copy of Covet by J. R. Ward (click on the link for details and Decadence’s excellent review of the book).

RWA RITA Awards finalists

Last week, the Romance Writers of America announced the finalists for the RITA Awards. You can find the full list on the RWA website. Congratulations to all the nominees, especially the Aussie authors (thanks to Bronwyn Parry for this list):

Kelly Hunter (Contemporary Series Romance category)
Revealed: a Prince and a Pregnancy (excerpt)
Harlequin Enterprises, Mills and Boon Modern Heat
Editor: Joanne Grant
ISBN: 978-0-263-87252-1

Elizabeth Rolls (Regency Historical Romance category)
Lord Braybrook’s Penniless Bride (excerpt)
Harlequin Enterprises, Harlequin Historical
Editor: Linda Fildew
ISBN: 978-0-373-29548-7

Bronwyn Parry (Romantic Suspense category)
Dark Country (review)
Hachette Livre, Hachette Australia
Editor: Bernadette Foley
ISBN: 978-0-733-62323-3

Lord Braybrook's Penniless Bride by Elizabeth Rolls (Australian edition)Dark Country by Bronwyn Parry

A p-what?

I’ve noticed a very disturbing trend in the publishing industry. You’d think that an industry that relies on the power of words would know better, but they seem to be quite happy using the term ‘p-book’ to refer to a print book. Seriously? ‘Print’ is so cumbersome to say that we have to reduce it to ‘p’? As if iPad isn’t bad enough!

Letter from a drunk to a long gone wife by Jack Marx

I forgot to mention this last month, but Jack Marx posted his short story, Letter from a drunk to a long gone wife, on his news.com.au blog. This story was one of my favourites in last year’s Books Alive anthology. It’s beautifully written, but it’s definitely not what I’d consider a romance.

Me, Twitter and Laura Kinsale

Last week on Twitter I got into a rather lengthy discussion with one of my favourite—if not the favourite—romance authors on the value of mash-ups and the idea of originality in fiction. Twitter isn’t exactly the most conducive environment for a discussion like this, so Magdalen of Promantica posted an excellent summary of our discussion and a place to be a little—okay, a lot—more verbose. Check out the discussion on her blog: For Laura & Kat: Copyright, Mashups & Who’s / Whose Right?

And while we’re talking about books…

…check out this this post on Australian Common Reader called The Secret Reading Life of Us. It talks about library borrowing patterns in the late 1800s to early 1990s and raises some though-provoking ideas on literature, culture and identity. The first part is a bit dry—although librarians might find it wildly fascinating—but gets interesting when it talks about the cultural role of popular fiction and the value of stories in cultural development:

Nations gain meaning from the stories they tell; but they also gain meaning from the stories they read…There is such a thing as an Australian literature; but we have achieved it only at the cost of not seeing ourselves as we are, but as a wishful image of an ideal national culture past its time. What we haven’t been prepared to see is that bad literature—the ‘raw material of literary evolution’, Franco Moretti memorably calls it—has been vital in our cultural development; and that it has usually been bad literature from somewhere else.

Photo credit: perfect gift 1 by lusi (via stock.xchng)

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