The Benighted Romance Novel

I actually meant to write a little bit about my work-in-progress this week. Perhaps touch on some of the reasons I created the type of heroine that I did, but a recent post I read changed my mind.

I think I was around 14 the first time I picked up a romance novel at my local library. I felt no trepidation or embarrassment taking it up to the counter or walking outside, carrying it in my hand for all the world to see. As I got older that started to slowly change.

The more I listened to those around me, to what society was saying, the more embarrassed I became about my liking for romance novels. When I went to the library I began scoping out the area, making sure no one I knew was around, before I ducked into the romance section. I started placing books from other genres that I also read on top of my book stack as I carried it outside.

I have never been the most extroverted person in the world and I struggle with shyness, but this is not an issue solely relating to me. It appears that many romance readers feel they must hide their choice of reading material.

“The New York Times” even published an article about the subject entitled “Lusty Tales and Hot Sales: Romance E-Books Thrive.” Well technically, the article was about how well romance books were selling in e-book format, but one of the reasons given for this was because it enabled romance book lovers to read in public without anyone being aware of what they were reading.

How did this happen I wonder? When did such an emotionally satisfying, optimistic,well-selling genre become so maligned?

This isn’t a question I can answer, but I know that it’s something we need to change. We need to be proud that we’re writers of romance, candid about our love for them.

Last year, while I was working in a Goodwill, an older gentleman came to the check out with a basket full of romance books. The cashier asked him who he was buying them for. He looked at her with absolute aplomb and said, “They’re all for me.”

I wanted to applaud.

 

(If you want to look at “The New York Times” article I mentioned follow this link: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/09/books/09romance.html?_r=1&emc=eta1)

Some of the e-book publishers they list are looking for submissions if anyone is interested.

Random thoughts and hot dreams

This is the first time I have posted here and, actually, it’s the first time I have written any type of blog. I’m supposed to promote myself, create a platform, show that I can write, well, be amusing, and many other things. I’m not sure that I can live up to that and, if I tried to, I would probably fail. Instead, I’m just going to talk, to share insights, and answer questions. So here goes. Get ready for a profound insight:

So I had a hot guy dream last night. He was tall with a chiselled face, slightly unmanly dimples, long deep golden hair, a sexy accent, a muscled chest that begged to be petted, and he smelled fantastic.

Are you drooling yet? I certainly was.

To make things even more interesting he was from the past (I think the middle ages). Apparently, there were random entrances from our time into other eras (I know I’ve been watching Primeval too much recently). Myself, along with a group of friends, had somehow gone through one of these ‘gates,’ I met this man, fell in love, and brought him back with me.

You would think I would have been happy with this. That I should have just let things go and enjoyed the ride as it were. Alas, I am an idiot and it just wasn’t something I could do. I had to question. Why were there holes in time? How could my golden-haired god have come through without experiencing major culture shock? Coming from such a misogynistic time wouldn’t he have been chauvinistic or at least very dominant and possessive (something I could never stand for)?

My dream crashed, but I ended up with another idea for a possible book. If you have any suggestions on how to answer the questions I posed I’d be interested in hearing them.

I have one romantic suspense written, which is titled ‘Running from Fate’ (still working on publishing) and I’m around 250 pages into my second book, which I am calling ‘A Blush of Magic.’ My newest book also involves gorgeous men with wonderful accents. It’s set in Ireland in a town called Ballybree where the faerie and the mortal worlds aren’t that far apart.

Hope you enjoyed my blog. I’ll be back next week with another ‘enlightening’ segment. If you’ve had any interesting, romantic dreams let me know, post them as a comment. I’d be interested in hearing them.

 

Happy dreaming.

Rose Connelly

 

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