I have been remiss in doing this so thank you to my followers, new and not so new. I appreciate your support. Some of you I know, and some I look forward to meeting someday as I am already reading and enjoying your stories too. :)
Now, onto this post’s subject where I ‘out’ myself a little. Contrary to my love of reading and writing romance, I don’t consider myself as being romantic in the traditional sense. Candlelight dinners are not for me – I like to see what I am eating. Flowers are wonderful to receive but they can be frighteningly expensive, and I’m afraid I like chocolate more than it likes me. As for romance movies, I prefer action, fantasy and science fiction to those bittersweet portrayals where investing in the Kleenex tissue company is strongly advised.
Believe me; my fellow movie patrons would thank me for avoiding such films. That way they don’t have to witness the monstrosity who’s wandering blindly out of the theatre with a snotty, glowing beacon for a nose and scarlet-rimmed eyes bulging out of their sockets having gone through the proverbial emotional ringer. Mercifully, that cringe worthy spectacle does not translate to books, which I can read (tissues at the ready) safely at home.
No matter what genre I read, most have a commonality to them. To varying degrees, they involve romance. What’s an action hero without a damsel in distress? (It’s even better when the damsel rescues him or they manage to save each other). Behind every detective desperately trying to solve a crime, isn't there a past relationship that divulges more about the character than said character realises or one that develops between he/she and the characters he/she interact with? Past, present, future - time has no relevance when it comes to stories of romance. Love transcends it. And whether the characters are way out in space, inhabiting a forbidden planet, scouring the jungles or deserts, passing through the deepest oceans or simply walking across the street, one never knows when one might meet the love of their life (or their death or somewhere in between).
I didn't plan to write romances. I wasn't sure I could do them justice. But no matter what my intentions were when I began to write and no matter where I lead my characters or what dire situations I placed them, they lead me right back to the object of their desire. Oh, they fought the good fight, found their place in the story and learned to be a better person / creature / entity, but they wanted their happily ever after too, and most of the time I let them.
So where does my sense of romance lay if I don’t have a traditional concept? It’s all about the word, the thought and the deed. I know I am loved when my husband keeps the children entertained so I can write. And then there’s the fact that he has never tried to change who I am. He lets me be myself. We do little things for each other that may not seem like much to anyone else, but to us, it shows the respect and patience, (the latter of which I have very little) we have for each other. To me, the fact that we can rely on the other is very romantic indeed.
The other thing that assures me there is romance in my soul is from living in the shadow of the loving relationship my parents had. They loved each other deeply, so deeply that for a long time when I was growing up, I despaired ever finding a relationship as solid and as magical as theirs. My parents held hands in public and stole hugs and kisses well into their twilight years. They teased each other mercilessly, but they were there for each other right up until the moment my father left this world. They grew old together – again, my idea of true love and of romance. It is that sense of everlasting love that I draw from in my writing. My parents’ marriage was a fairy tale come true. What better ‘happily ever after’ is there for this non-traditionalist romantic than that?
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone. :)