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New Members Cause for Concern
I read the latest list of new members with both satisfaction and concern. Included are journalists who truly have earned their credentials. However, it appears that OWAA may be accepting members who hardly can be described as professional communicators. Are all new members paid for their work by legitimate outlets or, instead, blogging and writing for free? Do they write or otherwise communicate as a vocation or avocation? Are their books sold to a traditional publisher or produced by what we used to call “vanity presses?” From my standpoint, a real author is one who has the talent and persistence to earn legitimate book contracts. When organizations such as OWAA make no distinction between writing books under contract and so-called “self publishing,” professionalism suffers. Anyone can “publish” a book. Not everyone can get a book published. There is a big difference.
— Ed Ricciuti, Killingsworth, Conn.
Members are encouraged to write about issues and topics. The executive director and editor will decide whether opinions are appropriate for debate or if the comments promote a personal cause; if the “cause” is unrelated to OWAA’s mission and potentially damaging to the membership, the letter might not be printed. Word limit: 400. Longer letters will be returned for revision. Send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org.