Boy loses girl.
Boy gets girl back.
My dad explained the mechanics of this popular plot device to me when I was a kid. He said every movie ever made followed it.
While I’m sure that’s not true of EVERY movie (The Hobbit?), it’s pretty much true of every romance novel.
So if they’re so predictable, why then are they so popular?
After the launch of Seduced by Innocence, my new paranormal romance series, I was talking about the genre with a friend of mine who writes more fantasy and sci-fi based books. While he liked Seduced by Innocence, he didn’t quite get the romance genre in general.
“They just don’t seem to be based on real relationships,” he objected. “In real life, you have conflict and compromise and ups and downs. In these novels the other person is perfect and there’s never any doubts and it all works out in the end.”
Well, yeah! That’s kind of the point, right? When we read (or write) romance, we’re looking for wish fulfillment, for soul mates and alpha males to sweep us off our feet. We want the happily ever after and the love that’s unstoppable against all the odds.
He pointed out that there were probably a lot of problems in my first marriage, things that heralded the end.
“Sure there were. But that marriage ended in divorce. That’s not what makes a good romance! Romances based on real life are called literary fiction.”
I said the last in jest, but it’s mostly true. If you’re looking for slice of life fiction that explores all the grey areas of love and life and deals with the problems and pitfalls of romantic love, you’re not likely to find that in a romance.
While the couple in a romance usually have something working against them, there is still a feeling of fate and eternal love at work, pulling them together.
This is the love of fiction.
Or is it?
Later this year, I’ll be releasing my first contemporary romance novel called Confessions of a Splintered Heart. While not actually based on a true story, the idea of this book is inspired by my epic romance with my husband. You can read more about our journey to love by clicking on Writing in Love and reading some of the posts. We used to have a blog together, but found that we enjoyed spending time together more than writing blogs together. Go figure!
What is interesting about this, is that for the book to work, we had to add conflict and reasons for our characters to be apart, whereas in real life, it wasn’t nearly as difficult. Yes, we had to overcome an age difference, and yes, we lived in different countries when we met and had to deal with skeptical family and friends and the logistics of actually, physically, being together, but we NEVER DOUBTED for one second that we were meant to be.
Now, years later, we still don’t have a single doubt. We are happily married, raising three children and writing books together. We spend nearly 24 hours a day together, and he’s an integral part of the process for almost all of my books. We also co-run Daring Books Design & Marketing, where we manage a team that works with authors on design and publicity efforts.
We’ve overcome a lot, but all the conflicts were external. We’ve never had any internal fear or doubts about the epic and forever nature of our love.
We are like a romance novel, an unbelievable story that people chalk up to fairy tales. We’re that couple people tell to get a room. (Seriously, he was kissing me at the mall the other day and some old lady told us this. We weren’t even getting hot and heavy!)
We’re living the fairy tale.
So maybe romance novels aren’t so unrealistic after all.
Either way, I’m so excited to share with you the fantasy of getting swept off your feet by the perfect man, because I live that every day with my sexy Russian Prince, and I want you to experience that as well—whether it’s with a sexy surfer who can control minds, like in Forbidden Mind, or with a hot martial arts expert who can shapeshift into a wolf, like in Seduced by Innocence.
Later this year I’ll have some fun contemporary romances as well, in addition to Confessions of a Splintered Heart. Watch for Kiss Me in Paris and a whole Kiss Me series! For historical fantasy romance fans, you won’t want to miss the launch of Sunrise & Nightfall, co-written with the sexy Dmytry Karpov, and for urban fantasy fans, stay tuned for Blood of the Fallen, also co-written with Dmytry Karpov. Whether romance is the primary storyline, or secondary to something else, all of my YA and adult books have love and romance in them, because I’m a sucker for happily ever afters.
Enjoy this cover reveal of book 2 in the Seduced Saga, Seduced by Pain, and join us on Facebook for a Valentine’s Day party to celebrate the launch! To gear up for this event, scroll down to enter a giveaway of a custom made rose pendant like the one worn by Rose in Seduced by Innocence, and signed swag! If you’re not already a subscriber to my newsletter, be sure to sign up because I will give away the novella version of Sunrise & Nightfall to ALL of my subscribers, when it launches, along with other goodies!