Join Prism Book Alliance® as Shae Connor goes Outside the Margins today.
Today, calls will be going out to the finalists for the RITA and Golden Heart awards, the top awards given by the Romance Writers of America for published and unpublished authors, respectively. For some authors, the nomination could be career-changing, and a win could be a vault into the elite of the genre.
I attended the awards ceremony at the RWA conference last summer, and I have to say, it was pretty darn cool to get all dolled up and go to what amounted to a smaller version of the Oscars, only one that honored fellow romance writers. I had several friends nominated, and a couple who won, which made it even more awesome.
This time around, I decided to throw my hat into the ring. I entered my most recent novel, Nobody’s Son. I have no actual expectation of finaling, much less winning, I figured if nothing else, it might give me an idea of where I stand as a writer among the larger romance community. (Scores are sent out to entrants after the awards are presented.)
The RITA rules currently also state that all entrants must judge in the first round. I received a total of eight books to read, and even though I opted out of the two categories I like least (and didn’t receive any from my own category, of course), the reading side of things was tough. Not that the books were terrible—several were quite good—but since they weren’t books I picked out on my own, it felt rather like reading assignments for school. It gave me a much higher regard for those who choose to judge contests like these.
Obviously, this isn’t the first time I’ve entered a contest for romance writing. I’ve been in the Rainbow Awards for the past few years and even won Best Anthology/Collection for Playing Ball, the baseball-themed anthology I coordinated and co-wrote with Kate McMurray, Marguerite Labbe, and Kerry Freeman. I’ll enter the Rainbows again this year. Even if it weren’t for the fun of the possible recognition, the entry fees go to many great organizations, and that’s reason enough right there to enter.
I know not everyone is on board with writing competitions. Yes, some of them can turn out to be more about popularity than about who wrote the best book. That’s always a risk with any contest that isn’t blinded. And of course, there are all kinds of ripoff contests out there that are just trying to make money.
But when it comes to the legit contests like the RITAs and the Rainbows (and the Lammys and the EPICs and others), I think of a contest entry like promotion. As with any other kind of promo, there are no guarantees, but if you do get a nomination or a win, that’s going to draw more eyes to your work. And more eyes is likely to mean more sales.
So I say if you have a book you’re proud of, and you can spare the entry fees (and time to judge if necessary), get out there and enter. Who knows? You just might come out a winner in the end.
Title: Nobody’s Son
Author: Shae Connor
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publication Date: 11/16/2015
Cover Artist: Maria Fanning
Genre: Contemporary, Gay, M/M Romance, Romance
Who wouldn’t want a nice cup of tall, dark, and gorgeous? Shaun Rogers does. He’s working at the front desk of a clothing-optional gay resort when Conrad “Con” Brooks walks in. The sweet, funny, and smart IT guy is there to install a new network and security system, and sparks fly between the two men from the start. Trouble is, Shaun’s hiding his sexuality from his grandmother, the only family he has left, and that makes him reluctant to take the leap with Con.
Then a man claiming to be Shaun’s absent father shows up out of nowhere, throwing Shaun completely off balance. His life spiraling toward chaos, Shaun soon discovers that his “father” is hiding secrets of his own. When things come to a head between them, it’s Con who comes to Shaun’s rescue—but the incident could force Shaun into a decision he’s not sure he’s ready to make.
About Shae ConnorShae Connor lives in Atlanta, where she’s a lackadaisical government worker for a living and writes sweet-hot romance under the cover of night. She’s been making things up for as long as she can remember, but it took her a long time to figure out that maybe she should try writing them down. She’s conned several companies into publishing her work and adds a new notch on her bedpost each time another story is unleashed onto an unsuspecting universe.
A member of the Romance Writers of America and the Rainbow Writers chapter, Shae was first published in 2010 and has a lineup of short stories, novellas, and novels available from Dreamspinner Press, Wilde City Press, MLR Press, and Amber Allure.
Shae is part Jersey, part Irish, and all Southern, which explains why she never shuts up. When she’s not chained to her laptop, she enjoys cooking, traveling, watching baseball, and reading voraciously, and she’s an annual volunteer for the Dragon Con on-site publication, the Daily Dragon. You can find her hanging out on Twitter most any time @shaeconnor, but for the more direct route, you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her website at shaeconnorwrites.com.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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