Survey

viVian, Bitchery member and undergraduate student contacted us to ask for our help. She’s attempting to complete her final project for graduation by researching Romance Readers.

She’s using a survey format that the RWA has used in previous studies, but has modified it to conduct a comparison between previous data and present data, along with an analysis of “the differences between local and Internet readers.”

Her deadline is June 16, and her survey is conveniently located online, should you be interested in sending some data her way. Note: the survey is on a free survey site, but as an undergraduate it’s not like she gets funding for survey projects. And the survey site doesn’t collect any data from the user, so fear not any spam.

I’d be curious to hear what the final project yields, as the survey asks disparate questions about romance interests, from subgenre to cover preference. Question #11, “Have you ever hidden the fact that you were reading a romance novel,” is probably my favorite of the queries, as it does make me think which books qualify for the bookcovers I bought on sale.

Note: the survey loads Robin Schone’s site after you finish, which is deliberate. Schone helped viVian out with the survey setup.

So please, Ms. viVian, do let us know how your research turns out.

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The Link-O-Lator

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  1. 1
    Charlene says:

    “What part of the United States do you live in?”

    Um…none?

  2. 2
    Maya says:

    Hi Vivian (I’m assuming you’ll read these comments) –
    took your survey, a few comments –
    – it didn’t leave an option for people who don’t live in the States. I left it blank. I don’t know if that invalidates my survey.
    – you didn’t indicate what your research hypothesis is – maybe that would affect the validity of your results?  In any case, it would be interesting to know
    – I laughed at the question about whether i had ever hidden my romance reading (no) because of the time I came across one of my professors at a cafe. I had already gone ahead and greeted her before realizing what was going on – the poor woman, mother of three, had carved out fifteen peaceful minutes for herself and was enjoying a coffee and a romance novel all by herself.  Until, of course, I interrupted her, and she tried to slip her novel under the table so i wouldn’t see.  Alas, the cover was infinitely, luridly snark-worthy.  I played along, pretended I hadn’t seen, and tried to fix my mistake by leaving her in peace as quickly as possible – and have been wondering ever since: did she hide her book because it was a romance, or because she was ‘caught’ by a student reading something that wasn’t purely academic (since she had a deserved reputation for being brilliant)?  I’ll never know, since I certainly don’t have the courage to ask her outright.

  3. 3
    Chris says:

    Ditto on the US question. “Internet readers” is a broad area and the internet is available to those of us not in the US as well. Maybe it should be “local or internet readers in the US.”

  4. 4
    Marianne McA says:

    Also not in the US.  The last question – favourite author – I took that it was asking for a favourite romance author, but it’s not clear.

  5. 5
    Elizabeth says:

    I was also a little hesitant on the “Where are you from” question. If I have known what the research was going towards, I could have chosen better. For instance, I live in Japan, and I was born in the midwest, but I feel like Seattle is my home.

  6. 6
    Katidid says:

    I’d love to help too (I wrote my Master’s thesis on Romance Readers), but I too don’t live in the States. Will leaving it blank nullify the rest of my answers?

  7. 7
    Ishie says:

    “Question #11, “Have you ever hidden the fact that you were reading a romance novel,” “

    I wonder if it matters if you hide it due to the title, since I confess doing it with “Date me Baby One More Time”.  Cute book, but knockoff Britney lyrics? Noooohoooo…

  8. 8

    Thanks for the heads up; it’s been ages since I took a survey.  I was shocked when I realized I’d only read about 10 romances in the last year (not including my own).  I really don’t read that many anymore; these days I’m into crime (John Sandford and Andrew Vachss) and the always hilarious Carl Hiaason.

    Good luck, Vivian!

  9. 9
    ~viVian~ says:

    Hello folks ~viVian~ here, sorry for not getting back sooner, (actually I did, but the internet was cruel and ate my comment up, the f*&ker) 

    First let me say, THANKYOU THANKYOU THANKYOU.  I have 500+ responders as of about an hour ago.  Talk about the power of the internet.  When I started this little project I didn’t think it would get to the point that is so far.  RWA should really think about using an internet survey the next time they do polling.

    Anyway, regarding the “where do you live question, if you didn’t answer it it is fine, the best part of that site is it let’s me know how many answered that question or should I say didn’t answer that question.  I’ll just work it into my data.  But the heads up and critism is good so thanks for your input.

    As far as Question 11 that is mine, something I use to do, however, with age I have gotten to the point where I don’t care and am just happy my clothes are clean stage when I put them on.  I was coming home from the RT Booklover’s convention in 2005 and a business class type gentlemen was commenting on my book that was in the basket going through security.  L. Hamilton’s “Incubus Dreams.”  He gives me an eyebrow wriggle, saying “I bet that’s a good book”  I said it was and went on my merry way.  Though I probably was more concerned about the “Got Sex” t-shirt I had to reveal when they asked me to take off my hoodie.  If that had happened five years earlier, that book would have been in my briefcase only to come out once I had settled in the plane with the over facing the corner of the window seat.  (I am getting to my point)  I will be looking at the ages of the folks who responded that they never hid their covers and make some comparisons to the folks who like sedate covers.

    I’m babbling (something I do when I am suffering from sleep deprivation) and will stop here.  I really just want to give all who participate a heartfelt thankyou and to say stay tuned.

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