Open Letter to the New York Times

As a trade association representing more than 10,000 writers of romance fiction worldwide, Romance Writers of America (RWA) is deeply disappointed by the decision of the New York Times to change its bestseller criteria.

Romance authors, most of them women, have dominated the best-seller lists in mass market and e-books for years. To dismiss these authors and the millions of readers who buy their books is to ignore what “bestseller” truly means. Each year, consumers buy more than $1.3 billion worth of romance fiction. If the New York Times eliminates the mass market and e-book lists, they are proving that they are out of touch with what consumers actually buy. Further, the dismissal of two formats dominated by women can’t help but feel sexist.

RWA strongly urges the Times to reconsider its decision.

4 Comments
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love your comeback

January 30, 2017 06:53 PM by Brenda Pearson

Fight for all new authors who is trying to get into Romance writing. Most of my buys last year was an ebook. So yeah, they should reconsider. 

Fill the void?

January 30, 2017 09:16 PM by Jessa Slade

Could RWA (maybe along with SFWA, SCBWI, and other genre orgs) offer to curate a bestseller list for NYT? They need content; we have bestsellers. Maybe there's an opportunity here to get our name out to a wider audience.

Unfortunate, but...

February 1, 2017 03:08 PM by Sariah Wilson

My guess is that the NYT has no intention of changing their mind. And if that's the case, then I hope that RWA will stop using the NYT for the Honor Roll and look for more accurate lists with verifiable sales numbers.

re: Unfortunate, but...

February 1, 2017 03:44 PM by Erin Fry

Thankfully, there are a number of other ways members can achieve Honor Roll outside of the NYT list: appear on the Publishers Weekly Top Ten bestseller list or any other PW best-seller list based solely on format, genre, or region; appear in the top 50 of the USA Today bestseller list; or have sold at least 100,000 copies in a single language.

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