5 Things You Didn’t Know About Romance Writers
#5 – It’s Hard Work.
A book isn’t an easy thing to write in whatever form it takes. Romance novels are no different. Sure, the plot tends to follow a general structure – man and woman meet, there’s attraction [buzz buzz, kiss kiss, yummy noises], man and woman are pulled apart by some conflict or other, man and woman overcome their conflict internally, externally (likely both) and ride off into the sunset. However, like all writers we start off with a blank page and we piece the story together one word at a time. As the saying goes, “When the going gets tough, the tough write another book.”
#4 – Our Families Know What We Do & They Often Brag About It.
Once at an event with extended family members I hadn’t seen in ages, an obscure relative asked me what I was doing lately. I of course told her, “I’m writing romance novels.” She gasped and clutched her heart in dramatic fashion. Looking around, she leaned toward me, lowered her voice and asked in scandalized tones, “Does your husband know about this?” Why yes, lady with the vapors, he does. He’ll tell anyone who listens that his wife is a romance writer. He’s a big dude and loves me a lot so I haven’t known anybody to tease him about it.
#3 – What We Do Has Little To Do With Twilight, Fifty Shades of Grey, [Insert The Latest Pop Literature Craze Here].
The general populace tends to lump the romance genre at large in with popular literature that either involves copious amounts of sex – otherwise known as erotica (Fifty Shades of Grey) – or a love story in some context that in no way classifies the romance genre (like young adult phenomenon Twilight or the mainstream fiction such as the Outlander series, etc). Not that there’s anything wrong with these books. I know many romance readers and writers who love these books. However, romance, like mystery, is clearly defined. The main focus of the story is the love story and must involve a satisfying and optimistic ending. As the official Romance Writers of America organization puts it, “In a romance, the lovers who risk and struggle for each other and their relationship are rewarded with emotional justice and unconditional love.”
#2 – At The End Of The Day, It’s Not About The Sex.
Heated glances. A forbidden touch. Kisses in the rain…on the beach…in an elevator. Whether the novel is sweet or super sexy, a romance writer’s job is to make the reader at least somewhat hot around the collar. For those who include love scenes, the goal is to make them just as hot or hotter than the anticipation leading up to that point. But would you like to know a secret? My favorite thing about writing romance is building the fundamentals of a great, lasting relationship and creating an ending that is just as satisfying for the reader as the characters themselves. As the incomparable Nora Roberts has said, “It’s more about emotion than where his hands are.”
#1 – We Come From All Walks Of Life.
I’ve met romance writers old and young, some who are wealthy and those living paycheck to paycheck. The one thing we all have in common? We’re really happy with what they do. And those who read romance for pleasure are happy, too. I’ve yet to meet the exception. At the end of the day, how many people can say they have the privilege of doing what they love for a living, whether it’s romance writing or crocodile wrangling? So here’s to those who do what they love – and cheers to readers who love romance!
No more wedding marches for her!
Wedding planner Roxie Honeycutt can make happy-ever-after come true for anyone except herself. Freshly divorced and done with love, she's okay with watching clients walk down the aisle. What's not okay? Sharing a charming Victorian house with accountant Byron Strong. He's frustratingly sexy and determined to keep her confused.
Roxie thought Byron's expertise was numbers, yet somehow he sees her for who she really is. Somehow he understands the hurt she hides behind a trademark smile. Suddenly romance is tempting again, even if it means risking another heartbreak.
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Amber Leigh Williams is a Harlequin romance writer who lives on the US Gulf Coast. She lives for beach days, the smell of real books, and spending time with her husband and their two young children. When she’s not keeping up with rambunctious little ones (and two large dogs), she can usually be found reading a good book or indulging her inner foodie. Amber is represented by the D4EO Literary Agency.
“What was wrong with the old Roxie?”
His words stuck with her. And his kiss.
It was difficult to forget a kiss like that, especially coming from someone…well, someone like Byron. Roxie had spent more time than she’d like to admit trying not to think about the kiss – about how sweet it was. She’d forgotten kisses could be so sweet. She’d tried extra hard to forget how his lips had lingered. And how in lingering he’d awakened starbursts inside her. Starbursts of eternity.
She frowned deeply. Being touched…it had been so long since she had really been touched. The hollowness in her had turned into a resounding ache, and for a few moments she’d thought about bringing Byron’s mouth back down to hers. For a few moments, she’d craved more than his companionship. She’d craved the contact. The promise of heat that came with it.
But had she wanted it – had she wanted him – for the single reason that heat could erode loneliness? There was trust there. There was affection. For those small starbursts of eternity, there had been longing and the promise of flame. It had been too long since she’d felt the sheer, electrical pulse of new chemistry.
Why had Byron’s kiss made it seem like so long since she’d felt the flame? The passion?
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