He felt now that he was not simply close to her, but that he did not know where he ended and she began. ~Leo Tolstoy

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What I Will and Won't Do as a Romance Novelist: A Handy List

1. No billionaire CEO's who are assholes/broken/tortured and who buy the heroine for the night--or longer--or in some other way make her "his." I have--and will again--have a rich guy now and then but he's not going to fit the mold as described above.

2. If the guy is an asshole in general, (H in my third book starts out as one) the h isn't going to be impressed. She will not be "intrigued" or seek to "fix" his asshole-ness. When he sees the error of his ways and ceases aforementioned asshole behavior, only then will the h give him a chance.

3. No covers featuring naked torsos. I'm a big believer in "never say never" but in this area, I'm going to go for a different, unified look for all my covers that eschews that trend. Hopefully this will make them stand out a bit.

4. Diversity. If the main characters aren't POC, then someone sure as shit will be, and not for the sake of being hip and cool--a white gal shoe-horning in some diversity to show how "open-minded" she is. The world is a big place filled with lots of different people. Therefore different people will show up in my books, in minor or major roles, in all races, creeds, and sexual orientations. It just makes sense.

5. Long stories. I don't/can't/find it impossible to keep it short. I like being submerged my worlds for a bit and I want to fill them out to make them as realistic as possible. So if you like short reads, my stuff probably isn't for you. (the exceptions being purposely short shorts or holiday novellas)

6. No insta-love. Insta-attraction, yes, but the real love takes time, even if the physical action gets going sooner.

7. Big, fat, over-the-top HEAs. Looks like each book's ending is going feature a proposal or wedding at some exotic local already referenced early in the book as a sort of clue. Love me some schmaltz and fluff, esp, if it took a long time for the characters to get there.

In no way do I mean to disparage authors who do or do not employ one or more of the above in their novels. To each her own. But the romance field is a big place and if I have to "market' or "brand" my stuff in some way, then this list is to that end.

I like good people. Good people who are doing the best they can. I like respect between the H and h. I like stories where the love is strong and sweet, and the sex hot but emotional as well, and I love building up to a (hopefully) satisfying relationship that the reader doesn't have to worry about later. :)

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