How many times have any of you out there that love the Romance/Paranormal Romance genre heard, "Only lonely people read romance novels", "You're love life must really suck, because let's face it-why else would you read romance novels", and my favorite-"Are you that much of a perv or that sex crazed?". I mean you never hear people who read Stephen King and them being accused of all being schizo sociopaths with multi-phobic narcistic agressions towards animals do you? If you're into Self-Help books, you must be a Hippy or if you're into Sci-Fi you must be happy with your virginity, Dungeon Master.
I didn't get into romance novels until I was close to being a Senior in high school. I had read a few Sunfire YA romances because like I have said before, I am a big history buff especially with the European Pre and Middle Age eras as well as Native American stories and lore. A girl who had been a friend, named Dawn talked me into reading this pirate themed romance. Yeah I have a thing for pirates and vikings too. She introduced me into the world of Georgina Gentry and Johanna Lindsay. Then Interview With The Vampire came out by Anne Rice. I had always loved anime movies because most of them were fantasy themed. I don't know where that came from-perhaps it was all those years as an only child living in an all adult neighborhood(yeah there was ALOT of pretend and the lake had mermaids and the ducks carried fairies across-don't ask). Anyhow I loved those animated movies, The Hobbit, Return Of The King, The Last Unicorn, Unico, Vampire Hunter D, The Monkey King, and much more. My mom having HBO on the weekends and us having The Disney Channel was awesome in the 80s. It's been no secret that I loved to write from a young age and I wrote about everything. So why did I pick Paranormal Romance for a genre to write?
The answer is easy, I love it! However I have not limited myself to one specific genre, but you're talking to a gal here who has had all sorts of fantastical stories pent up in the storehouses of her mind for over 20 years. So back to the question, are romance novels Only for the lonely and love lorn? Are we all just sex crazed and depraved individuals? I want to read your responses to this one guys and gals!
When I pick up a romance novel off the shelf, I immediately decide if it's 1.) Part of a series I'm reading-if so then I don't even need to read the back cover and inside preface. It's an instant buy.
2.)I look at the back cover first and read the summary. If the summary can perk my interest then I move to the inside pages and scan through the preface of the book. Then finally I look at the cover. My opinion is that if the cover is really over the top that means that there is a reason why a publisher would take the time to have the cover artist really go all out. So the cover does have to have some sort of appeal.
3.)Author-yes the author does count when I look at a book. I'm kind of the Lara Croft of books. I love to discover some new treasure and run with it. So I always tend to look up new authors as well as those of whom I'm already addicted to.
A romance novel to me whether it is historical, paranormal romance, erotic, etc. has to have a plot. You can't just have a bunch of cheesy lines from a bad daytime soap and a bunch of sex scenes and that be considered a romance. Well maybe if you're at a singles bar or you belong to a frat-perhaps it's acceptable but I won't be buying your book. I love Paranormal Romance because well most of them have better plot lines, thrills, chills, and great intimacy (which is better than sex in a lot of ways because achieving true intimacy with another person is almost impossible) between two characters that is better than most things on TV or on the big screen. When I pick up a romance novel it's not because I am "love lorn" or "lonliness". I try not to pick up a book period to fill some void that only I can fix myself. Perhaps some do-I won't harsh on them but as stress and strife enter my life, as much as I love my books and authors-only I can fix what's wrong here. I read fiction and even some non fiction for relaxation and a means to hone my craft. I think a large number of women and men read for recreation not to fill a void.
As to the other misconception-well maybe it's not a total misconception. I mean most of us are consenting adults however "perv" and "sexually frustrated" are just kind of ill words so I will say that that Life has all sorts of adventures and some are more sensual than others and people just like my brand of kink! HA!
So I want to hear your thoughs-good,bad,funny,but not sad on the stigma placed upon Romance writers and readers alike. C'mon talk to me!