Writer’s Notes: Romance In, Romance Out

I was hoping to have the new cover for The Biker’s Wench
to show you today, but…well…I kind of got caught up in smurfing on
ebay last night. Ebay is evil. And my Smurf collection is growing. But
enough about that. Tomorrow we’ll do the big cover reveal…I’m really
excited to show it off, though a bit apprehensive about the print cover
(since that’s a little more complex to lay out than an ebook cover).
But, the best way to learn is by doing, right? Jump in with both feet,
and all that…
Anyways, I was thinking last
night about how my romantic suspense novels have been a little less
“romantic” of late. Not that that’s necessarily a bad thing – romance is
something that can’t be forced, even on the page. And blending romance
and suspense dictates that some parts of the book just won’t lend
themselves to those mushy-type moments. But even for me, the romance has
been lacking, and I think I’ve figured out why. 
authors don’t read in the genre they write in while they’re writing,
claiming it influences their own story too much. I’ve never had that
issue, and actually, reading romance while I’m writing romance tends to
“get me in the mood” for those more emotional connections. So for me,
reading romance equals more romantic output, while reading other things
equals more of that style (say, suspense, or erotica, or horror).
unfortunate thing about being the very eclectic reader that I am is
that I can only read so many books at once (dang it!). And when I get
into longer books with a more literary style that require more focus to
read (like, say, American Gods), or engaging non-fiction (Coconut Cures), and then we happen to buy a copy of The Devil Colony
by James Rollins (which I have been *dying* to read and waiting very
patiently for in paperback, since hubby reads those too)…well, romance
gets squeezed out for awhile.
honestly…well…I go through periods where nothing much in the
romance/romantic suspense book sections really catch my eye. I’m kind of
in one of those reading slumps at the moment – it usually means I’ve
sort of “overdosed” on that genre of books for the moment, and need a
break from them.
So recently, I started re-watching the Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman
TV series (thank you, Amazon Prime). The romance between Sully and Dr.
Mike is so perfectly done, so subtle and well-paced that it just makes
me swoon with every episode (and I’m a sucker for a historical setting
too). I think I’m actually going to buy the complete set one of these
days, so I can go through the entire 6 or 7 seasons again.
has been nicely filling that romantic “void” I was in…replenishing
the romantic well, so to speak so that when I sit down with my
characters, I’m not *so* focused on throwing new suspense issues at them
that I forget they’re supposed to be falling in love (or have already
fallen). When I’m taking a frequent “dose” of a romantic storyline in,
it’s easier for me to actively look for the romance between my
characters so I can highlight those for the reader. It’s not that I
really have to do anything…my characters tell me their story, but I
can zoom in or out on certain aspects, and in my romantic suspense, I
try to make the romance a “zoomed-in” moment.

in, romance out. Suspense in, suspense out. Erotica in, erotica out.
Horror in, horror out. Too bad I can’t quite seem to make that happen
with literary writing…not that I really have time…

this post? Support your author: 
Romantic Suspense
| Erotica | Suspense/Thriller 
| Flash Fiction | Non-Fiction

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