VIRTUALLY HERS came out Oct. 2009. Get it at SAMHAIN Publishing. VIRTUALLY ONE coming soon.

I've also made available at Amazon BIG BAD WOLF a COS Commando book, an earlier manuscript about Killian Nicholas Langley. You can sample the first five chapters right here. EBOOK now available for KINDLE, NOOK, and at SMASHWORDS for $4.99.

I appreciate all your emails. If you'd like to buy Virtually His NEW, please contact me. Thank you.


Big Bad Wolf Author's Note/CH. 1

Big Bad Wolf CH. 2

Big Bad Wolf Ch. 3

(more chapters on left side bar below)

To read excerpts of VIRTUALLY HERS, scroll down & click on the links on the right.



VIRTUALLY HERS OUT IN PRINT AUG 2010! Discounted at Amazon!

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Who Has The Baddest Balls? RWA or HQ or Mr. Scurrilous Scrotum?

Knew the title would get your attention ;-).

The Net is a cool place to hang out, especially if you have a community of friends who update you on the interesting things that happened/are happening while you are out and about trying to make a living. Today, I came home to find a few bits of surprising news in my email box, all of them somehow related to sets of balls. And I do mean THAT certain pair of balls.

1) Sneaky balls

Harlequin, the biggest name in the romance genre, announced a new division, a VANITY PUBLISHING line called Harlequin Horizon. A vanity publisher, in case you don't know, is a company that asks the writer to come up with $$$ to get published. The most famous one dating all the way back to the 50s is Vantage Press. You pay them a few thousand, and they'll print your books with your name in front and send them to you.

On the Harlequin Horizon website, they are charging any interested writers from $600-$2500 to get their books published. They are also offering book trailers for a very small fee of $20,000. (Me: Uh, yeah. They are obviously looking for very rich writers).

Harlequin's official stance is that this new line is not affiliated to Harlequin in any way. Just:

Pay no attention to all the new HHorizon logos on the eharlequin site. Or the links to the new site.

Pay no attention to the fact that rejected writers submitting to Harlequin editors are told that there is ANOTHER way to get published...through the non-affiliated Harlequin Horizon.

Pay no attention to little bait on the site teasing you that, if the book does well, Harlequin might* publish you for realz.

Very sneaky balls.

2) Brassy balls

This award goes to RWA, Romance Writers of America, a non-profit organization for romance writers 10000 members strong, many of whom are published HQ authors. Since the beginning, RWA and HQ are like BFF, with many of its original founding members the Grand Dames of Harlequin romance (Nora Roberts, Linda Howard, Sandra Brown, Anne Stuart, just to name a few). RWA and HQ are like butter on toast. Fish and chips. Tar and shingle (well, I have* to bring in a roofing comparison). Thanksgiving and turkey.

But not any more.

This evening, RWA has announced to its members that, due to HQ's new vanity/subsidy publishing line, it NO LONGER recognizes Harlequin as an RWA-approved publisher. RWA doesn't approve vanity publishing because it believes that a publisher should NOT charge a writer money for publishing them, that a writer must be protected from possible scams.

HQ is a big, big presence in RWA. At Nationals, many of its editors give workshops and appointments to RWA members who are given the opportunity to pitch their manuscript. There are also many published authors signing their HQ-published books. By no longer recognizing HQ, there will be no more publisher spotlights or workshops or appointments. Harlequin editors can still attend the conferences, but they'll no longer be comped.

It takes really BIG BRASSY BALLS to ban the Big Player. This decision will have many consequences that will affect authors/members in many ways, from insider knowledge of, and access to, a popular publisher, as well as the revered RITA award, given to published books. HQ is so big, they have several categories in the RITAs--I can't stop stressing the havoc HQ's ineligibity is going to bring.

c) Hottest Balls

I leave the most interesting for last ;-). None of the above balls is relevant to a reader who doesn't write or care to be published. The only balls they care about are real ones, especially if they belong on a sexy man. Ahem.

So therefore, who has the hottest, baddest balls?

Why, I submit to you: The Case of the Scurrilous Scrotum, belonging to a man who is fated to one day eat these Peter Peppers:

And that's your Mid-Week Hot News.

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Sadista said...

Now that's some hot gossip. I think HQ is completely in the wrong, btw. What kind of crap is that? You're (not you specifically) paying them? I hope that the struggling authors out there don't fall for this. I think it is a scam!

Bravo to RWA for standing up to them although it wouldn't surprise me to see HQ start their own awards. Lines have been drawn so look out.

vince said...

There's been some discussion of this move over on the Writer Beware Blogs! (sponsored by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America with additional support from the Mystery Writers of America), including the fact that the Mystery Writers of America sent a letter to Harlequin informing them that the new subsidy division is in violation of their rules, suggesting steps Harlequin could take, and giving them until December 15 to respond.

J. said...

I've been reading up about this and I'm still confused. Anyways, the way I see it is that when you have the name Harlequin attached to HH, how can you not expect the readers/authors to not relate the two? I'm very interested on how things will continue on in the next couple months, hell maybe even in the next couple weeks!

I never knew the romance community would have this kinda of interesting news.

Gennita said...


I believe SWFA is getting ready to make a statement against Harlequin Horizon (I can't believe some of the tweets are calling it Harle Ho!) soon. This is getting really interesting. Three major writers organizations are voting against publishing giant, Harlequin.

Read: Jackie Kessler's Blog. She examined Harlequin's public announcement of HHorizon's mission line-by-line and basically pointed out every fake promise made in between.

Harlequin's surprise at the backlash just shows how unprepared they were. I don't think the bean counters thought much further beyond "mo money, mo money, mo money."

Gennita said...

Okay, not sure why that link brought up a 404 page. Here's the link again for you to cut and paste:

Gennita said...


That's the problem. Many inexperienced unpublished writers might think that paying all that money will give them a Harlequin-published book. Scenario: The confusion might result in their promoting themselves as HQ author to BN or any bkstore and asking them to stock their books. Another scenario: these writers might think they can get the benefits other HQ authors get as members of RWA because their book has the Harlequin name on it.

vince said...

Jackie Kessler's post is a good one, thanks for the link. The SFWA has indeed made a statement now, and John Scalzi has a good post over at Whatever on Harlequin's actions.


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