An Insight Into the Romance Writer’s Mind
In today’s questions we try to gain an insight into the romance writer’s mind.
What made you start writing romance as opposed to any other genre of literature?
This one is easy for me to answer. I write romance, because I love reading romance. I’ve adored romances since I read my first one in my teens. There is something that is just heart-warming (corny I know) about a good romance. You’re talking to a woman who married her childhood sweetheart and is still happy! That motives me to share the happiness. Sure, the road has been rocky, but isn’t anything worth having worth fighting for?
Plus, I dream romance stories. On any given night, I can dream an entire romance novel. Some are long, some are short, some of them are too freaking weird to write down, but romance fills my head at night, During the day scenes and romantic vignettes burst into my head complete. (No, I’m not a total nutcase, I just have a creative mind.)
Reading serves two purposes: entertainment and education. A good story is entertaining, but it can teach us about life as well. Romance novels have taught me about geography, history, disabilities, careers, and a multitude of other things. I like to think that my readers can pick up an occasional tidbit of knowledge when perusing my words.
Why do you think romance continues to be a market leading genre?
The way I see it, romance gives us hope. Romance novels remind us that there is good in the world and that love can solve a lot of problems and make life better. I believe that when we read a romance, we can often picture ourselves as the heroine and that gives us an emotional ride … living vicariously through someone else. (Or maybe that’s just me!)
But beyond that, there are mixed genre romances too. Mysteries, shape shifters, vampires, steam punk, historical, futuristic … the variety is endless. By incorporating every other known genre and some new ones too, romance now provides inspiration and entertainment for a vast variety of individuals. Women and men. Let us not forget the erotic romance. Some like it hot!
Until recently, publishers were wary of accepting stories that were more hot than romance … but there is a huge readership out there who want heat and “happy for now” stories. (I’ve written and read a few of those myself.) Now, thanks to public opinion and self-publishing, the big publishers are listening and giving the romantic-at-heart what she wants to read.
The romance genre is where you can find anything at any heat level. It is the one genre that has it all!
In what way do you see romance today reflecting the way women’s role in society has changed?
Thinking back, I can remember the first romance novella that I ever read. If I recall correctly, it was Roses for Breakfast. (I did a search for the novel, but couldn’t find it. Of course, it was 35 years ago. Ish. So I may have the title messed up.) A story about a young woman, barely an adult, who ends up with an extremely rich man. He was very domineering and she swooned at his feet. Then, I loved it. Now, all I can think is “Oh my god. Why did you enjoy that.?” She was a simpering, weak, helpless female.
The most recent book I read was “Shadows to Light” by Regan Black. Fabulous story. It was set in the future and was more adventure than romance, but the heroine was strong, independent, helpful and optimistic. She fought her battles and came out the victor. She refused to let life get her down and accepted the assistance, but not the control of the man she loved. She was strong enough to make it on her own!
My point? In today’s romantic novel market, the heroines are more confident, competent and independent. They can fight their own battles. They are loving and giving people. Their romantic interests augment who they are, but the heroines are complete in themselves. Their men make them better, but do not define who they are.
We no longer see simpering, helpless women. We see heroines who are strong and capable. The focus is on women of all types. There are corporate CEOs, lawyers, stay-at-home Moms, doctors, nurses, computer nerds. Name a career or life-choice and there is a romance out there about it. The genre reflects the reality that woman can be or do anything they want. They can do anything they set their minds to, and accept when they need assistance. Gone are the days of heroines who’s identity and life rolls are defined by their men. Watch out, here come the healthy, strong, kick-ass heroines!
Don’t forget to return next week for more insights into my twisted, creative mind. Check out my side-bar for links to my stories!
Want to Read More and To Find Great New Authors to Follow?
Since we are doing these posts as a group, you can find new authors and new reads by following the links at the bottom of each post. Start by checking out www.megganconnors.com for her take on these questions. If you are a romance author and would like to join in our game, drop me an email. (katieoconnorwrites at gmail dot com)
‘Do you like to read romance novels? Wouldn’t you like to know more about your favorite authors? Well you came to the right place! Join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all….. About our writing of course! Every week we’ll answer questions and after you’ve enjoyed the blog on this site we’ll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride! Tell your friends and feel free to ask us questions in the comment box.’