Wednesday, February 7, 2018

The Joy of Reading & Writing Romance

February is the month of love so romance is naturally that is my topic this week. Let’s face it, who doesn’t love reading a story with a happy ending or one that leaves the reader with tears, whispering  “…ahhh?”  To me that has always meant what reading a romance was all about. I wanted that happy ending for the characters. No matter how chaotic my own life was at the time I wanted to know there were happy endings out there for at least someone – even if the people were fictional. 

When I ask writers about why they love writing romances a good many say the same things – they love writing stories with a happy conclusion and they like the idea of writing positive, upbeat stories. And let’s face it -- readers continue to look for those types of stories. They may want to escape from real life for a few minutes into a fantasy world where no matter how bad things look for a while, the ending will be happy.

That positive conclusion and knowing what is coming is also why I always have loved going back and re-reading some of the great romantic tales that I have always loved – stories like Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility. Those books captured my heart in high school and I keep going back to them from time to time, just to finish them again with that same “ahhh.”

I have to admit in my writing I was always inspired by the “happily ever after” real life story of my mom and dad. She knew she wanted to marry him from the first moment she saw him, even though she was just a young girl.  The story she told us about the first time she saw my dad was a line I stole for one of the first romance novels I ever wrote – Home Fires Burning.  Now that one scene may have inspired the book, but her love story went in a more romantic direction--one I may write one day. She was truly a daring romantic heroine. The minute she learned he was back in the US from World War II, she quit her job in California to grab the first train back to Colorado to meet him. They eloped as soon as she got back.
Her love story and the fact that she told it to us so many times made me a fan of romance tales. She also loved reading romance novels -- Gone with the Wind being her favorite. She always seemed to have a copy of it around. A good many of my favorite old romances still grace my book shelves together with newer mystery novels, thrillers and fantasy tales.  Among them… that romance novel I loved writing so much – Home Fires Burning. I set it on a Colorado ranch, similar to the location where my mother met my father. It’s still available on Amazon:

“I’m going to marry that man some day!”

Little Bonita Dominguez made that pledge the first time she saw Max Cameron. Now it’s about to happen, but nothing is going the way she planned. Carrying a secret she has kept since she left the ranch ten years ago, she would prefer to be back in California, where she has built a new life, a new life that doesn’t include Max.

Now a chic, sophisticated woman, Bonita certainly isn’t the same playful girl Max remembers from the past. For the past ten years he has devoted his life to his ranch. Does he have room in his heart for Bonita? Or would loving her endanger the legacy he wants for his heirs?

Buy Link:  Amazon

Why do you love reading or writing romance? I’d love to hear from you!

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