Bett Norris

Perspectives

Let’s Put on a Show

lesficwritersguild

Mission Statement

The Lesfic Writers’ Guild is a professional association of writers of lesbian literature.  Our goals are to advance work by, for and about lesbians; to advocate for the legal and artistic rights of our authors; and to collectively organize, advertise, promote, collaborate on and distribute the publications of our members.  In our quest to promote the full spectrum of lesbian writing, we welcome authors, industry professionals and readers.

How cool is this? Every genre has a professional organization, from the Mystery Writers of America, the Romance Writers of America, Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Horror Writers Association, you get the idea. There has never been a professional association for the writers of lesbian literature, a small niche, you might think, but I know how large it really is. It’s time the writers get organized and pool information and resources for marketing and promoting our work. Most of us are published by small independent presses with little or no budget for marketing, ads, certainly no money for book tours and the like. Mid list publishers are in the same boat. The economy has put virtually every publishing house, big and small, in the same boat, and some wonder if it is sinking, facing the monolithic amazon.com, which offers huge discounts, cutting into publishers’ profits, crushing independent booksellers where our work lives, feminist and gay bookstores, with the rise of E Books, the used book market that resides cheek-to-jowl on amazon’s site with new books, and the litany of woes and dire forecasts could go on. Shrinking dollars in every household budget, shrinking economy, the purchase of new, print books is a luxury.

So, we writers have decided to band together and pool our resources to help ourselves out. This is in the startup stage, and for now, it exists as a Yahoo group:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/lesficwritersguild/

So new, we haven’t built the web site yet. This has happened in the past few days. We have a domain name, a logo, a mission statement, and server space for the web site. It’s sort of like Judy and Andy Hardy, let’s all pitch in and make a show in the barn.

We’ll buy ads. We’ll do things together and share the costs. We’ll promote each other’s work, we’ll act collectively to market and sell, we’ll do joint appearances.

I get a feeling like they must have had in the sixties, when women formed groups and marched and sat on committees and did things together to advance civil rights, women’s rights, peace, so many things. The energy and excitement is contagious.

I’ll keep you updated about the web site, and as you can see from the mission statement, readers are invited, and indeed, essential to that mission. It’s you we are trying to reach, after all.

Now I have to pack and get ready for Women’s Week in P Town. If anyone who reads this will be there, please catch one of Bywater’s events and step up and introduce yourself. We’ll talk.

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2 responses to “Let’s Put on a Show

  1. Cynn Chadwick October 10, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    Bett,

    This is terrific. Great energy here. I’d like to join and become a part of, not only the benefits, but of the process. Let me know what I can do. I’ve got great connections at the university etc., I see a venue for us here in Asheville.

    Like

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