I am busy planning our annual readers' advisory event and the committee has selected "romance" as the theme of the event. Librarians are often loathe to admit that readers enjoy romance more than any genre that we stock on our shelves. The Romance Writers of America offer a very informative website which provide background on the genre, information about writers and the industry. It is a key resource for library staff who serve romance readers.
Various industry surveys return the same information year after year which puts romance ahead of sales in any other genre. The Romance Writers of America present this statistical analysis on their website as well. Romance is firmly in the driver's seat of increased e-book sales with many readers preferring to indulge in romance inconspicuously on the e-readers, tablets or smartphones. This was one of the main drivers behind our desire to investigate the trend.
Lisa Schimmer, senior cataloguer at Novelist, is the 2015 RWA Librarian of the Year. She was selected for her work which improved the cataloguing of romance novels, making them more accessible to readers and library staff who use the Novelist database. Lisa will be able to offer library staff a unique perspective on finding and categorizing romance novels. It is important that libraries are aware of trends in the industry and individuals who are working hard to make serving readers easier. The committee is hopeful that Lisa can join our event.
The committee has also agreed to read and provide annotations for five romance novels as per the committee's regular practice. Groans all around!