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Updates and Reminders from Deb

posted by Deb Werksman

RWA Data Released!

If you haven't already seen it, check out RWA's independent survey on the romance fiction readership and marketplace--fascinating!

Fabulous non-fic book about romance fiction!

Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan's BEYOND HEAVING BOSOMS--you will laugh out loud and your bosom will heave. Smart, smart, smart of course, and really, really interesting. I learned a lot. More info at

A word about advances!

When you are talking about/hearing about/negotiating about advances, be sure to ask what marketing is/was/will be provided...if any. Otherwise, you're not comparing apples to apples. Marketing budget won't be part of the contract, but the question to ask is what the publisher provides and what the author should expect to pay for out of her own pocket.

RWA Nationals!

The National Conference is only a month away. Sourcebooks has a lot happening at National, including:
  • Friday July 17, 11am Danielle Jackson our Casa publicist from Sourcebooks on a panel about marketing with Michelle Buonfiglio (Romance B(u)y the Book) and authors Lori Foster and Julie Peterson
  • Saturday July 18, 11am-the Sourcebooks Spotlight! Hear all about the new and exciting things happening at Sourcebooks.
  • Saturday July 18, 3pm-the Sourcebooks Author Signing-for the authors with books in stores! Come and meet your favorite Casa Authors in person.
I'm also taking pitch appointments, so please sign up to see me! I'd love to hear about your book/s! If you find that I'm booked up, please let me know and I'll see what I can do about designating another time slot informally to take pitches.


  • email submissions (vs. heavy, heavy paper)
  • subject line gives book title/subgenre. For example: "Romeo, Romeo award-winning romantic comedy submission"
  • email body includes actual, real time info
--what the book is (subgenre)
--whether it's part of a series and what the subsequent books are
--word count (actual, digital, using Word "word count" function)
--author's publishing history including sales (of copies of books to readers)
  • Attachments are all named THE SAME:
  • Every part of the submission includes author or agent's contact information (including phone number)


  • Single title romance fiction (including series', trilogies, etc),
  • all subgenres,
  • 90,000ish words
  • Authors with a track record who'd like to go to the next level
  • Debut authors with something new/fresh/exciting
And don't forget those all-important 4 criteria:

  1. a heroine the reader can relate to
  2. a hero she can fall in love with
  3. a world gets created
  4. a hook that allows me to sell the book in 2-3 sentences


  1. Hi Deb!

    I can't wait until Nationals! I love the book signings and now we're having our own! Thrilling!

    I'm looking forward to the Spotlight On Sourcebooks--The Dom and Deb show is always one of the highlights of my conference, not to mention the Sourcebooks dinner.

    I can't wait to see everyone!

  2. Hi Deb--

    Thanks for the shout out! And thanks for your wonderful information, as usual :)


  3. Fantastic info, Deb!

    I'm just sorry I won't be in DC.


  4. Hi Deb,

    I've told several unpublished friends how easy it is to submit to you at Sourcebooks, and how exciting it is to be a Sourcebooks author.

    See you in DC.


  5. Thanx for the great info, Deb!

    Oh YEAH! DC is gonna be a blast! Bummed that you can't be there, Linda. :-( But WOO HOO on our CasaBabes dinner! I'm with Robin, can't wait!

    And Amelia, I promise not to spill my champagne on you this year. What? You aren't sitting next to me? You are putting Aunty in a high chair with a sippy cup? Oh well! Just so I get to be there!


  6. I am so excited about Nationals that I can hardly sit still! My first conference!!!!! It all sounds so wonderful that my only wish is that there were more hours in a day. See you gals there! And no way would I miss the Dom and Deb show. :)

  7. Wish I could be there. But I'm making a copy of your list to help me write better submissions.

  8. Looking forward to seeing everyone in DC--I just have to survive my work conference in New Orleans next week first!

  9. Yay Danielle! I so wish I could be there this year to cheer you on but tornado clean up has nixed that!

    Deb, some great points to think on and thanks again for your submission invitation and guidelines. :-)


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