I’m so excited about this! I remember meeting Laurie Kahn and hearing her describe this project and being amazed at how BIG it was. From the look of this trailer, she’s really kicked it off in full force and I would be heartbroken not to see the rest of that film. It already takes a more positive and comprehensive look into the readers and writers of romance than I’ve ever seen. One that is up to date and doesn’t try to be tongue-in-cheek or shame readers across the globe.
I couldn’t help but smile when I saw the aspiring author putting together her FedEx package to mail to RWA for the Golden Heart. I had that moment too, hoping that it would be the moment that kicked off my writing career–and it was. That contest is now electronic — that particular experience is a thing of the past, but this documentary has captured it. Because these filmmakers want to take a real insider’s look into the romance genre.
The project requires $50,000 by August 27th to be funded. It’s almost halfway there. I’ve already donated. I think it’s a worthwhile project for any reader or writer to become involved in — not just in romance. Because from what I’ve already seen, this documentary really tries to capture that connection between readers and writers and nowhere is it more far-reaching and passionate than in romance.
Kickstarter Project: Love Between the Covers
For more information about the entire Popular Romance Project, visit the website. It’s a lot bigger than just the film: http://popularromanceproject.org/
I’m having a great time at the PCA/ACA conference in St. Louis. Popular culture studies is the interdisciplinary examination of popular media such as genre fiction, television shows, comic books, music and new media. I haven’t had time to go to sessions other than the romance tracks. Those in and of themselves are absolutely fascinating.
The coolest thing is that these are romance scholars versus writers. The approach and views they have about romance as a genre come from an entirely different angle than how I usually look at things as a reader and writer of romance. As a cognitive science major myself, any time you can look at a topic from a different lens, the overall picture becomes so much richer.
Some snippets that piqued my interest:
- A talk on feminist ethics and evaluating the ethics of the romance genre by Jessica Miller (must bump Sherry Thomas to top of TBR pile)
- otome games – Japanese video games which operate sort of like “choose your own adventure” romances and are geared towards a female market
- Women and feminism in Robert Howard’s Fictional world (think Conan, Red Sonya) – This is one of the topics I couldn’t go to, but I grabbed a copy of the paper. I read Red Sonya way back in high school. Guess I had a thing for sword-wielding heroines way back when
- An amazing talk by Pamela Regis titled “The Romance Community: A Room of One’s Own and Écriture Feminine” tying together Virginia Woolf, Smart Bitches, and the concept of a feminine language for discourse. (I was trying to mentally tie in Lisa See’s themes of women and literacy, but I just couldn’t think fast enough. Definitely need to spend a decent amount of time considering this.)
- The Popular Romance project – a ginormous undertaking spearheaded by documentary filmmaker and educator Laurie Kahn of Brandeis University involving the building of a web community around a survey of romance that spans ancient times to the present and crosses cultures. The project also includes a documentary film. I’m not synthesizing this very well, but I’ll definitely be keeping my eye out as this project develops.
Amanda Berry, Sela Carsen, and I also finished our author panel on print and digital publishing today. It’s interesting to see the sorts of questions non-writers would ask versus in New England where the audience was all romance writers.
Now I can just enjoy. *happy sigh*
Oh neat! I see that Dr. Jessica Miller has put notes up on the conference on her blog. Much better than my scribblings!
Read React Review covers the PCA conference – Romance section