Busy Pen on Romance
When does a person call themselves a writer and why are some people given an urge to write but are unsure how to go about it?
Writers are interesting eclectic creatures. For some it may simply be a need to record a family history and for others, a biography of a family member or even their own memoirs. A traveler might want to record a trip diary and a handyman may want to form a self-help book on How to be a Home Handyman. For a great many, all they want to write is romance, one of the most popular genres worldwide.
A common question I hear is:
“I know my hero and heroine so well and I’ve got their story floating around in my head but I don’t know where to start.”
Whatever the reason for wanting to write, the only way to start is to bite the bullet and just do it.
You say, `But I’m not trained,‘ or `I don’t know where to start,’ or `Okay I’ve written it but I’m not that great at spelling and grammar but I can’t afford an editor,’ or ‘I started well but now I’m stuck,’ and ‘I’ve written my story but I know it’s not nearly long enough to make a book out of. How do I pad it out?’
Every one of these laments is a legitimate sentiment, particularly for the beginning writer. For myself, I have been studying the art of writing since I was 15. I have read a zillion (slightly exaggerated) books and articles on the subject; undertaken courses; attended international conferences and seminars; weekend workshops; and joined writers’ groups. Currently I am Past President of the Hibiscus Coast Writers Group, a well-organised team of prolific writers, several published, that began in 1993 and members are still meeting monthly today.
My personal preference is to write general fiction with a touch of romance. It suits my personality to write this way; most writers have a particular genre they feel more drawn to and are happiest writing. For instance, I could never throw myself whole-heartedly into the writing of a thriller or a horror story – I would probably scare myself to death and, as we have to live daily with our characters and their dilemmas, I prefer mine to be of a gentler persuasion.
Today, the opportunities for writers are greater than ever before. This does not mean that we can be lax in what we produce – the standard still needs to be high to please the readers – but the avenues for publication are more accessible.
We all said it at the beginning – `Ebooks will never catch on.’
Well, I’m sorry, we were wrong. Ebooks have definitely caught on. In 2010 in the US, eBook sales surpassed traditionally published books for the first time.
Starting with the Amazon Kindle, these are now a fully accepted reading device and avid readers are downloading their eBooks into their ereaders cheaply and instantly.
Apple, Sony, Kobo, Nook, PocketBook, Aluralek Libre, Cybook, Elonix, Icarus, Boox, VelocityMicro’s Cruz Tablet, Ipapyrus, Eslick, Jetbook, Cybook are a few of the brands currently available and the list continues to grow. Users are even able to download to their iPods and iphones so, you can see, the market for eBooks is huge and growing.
Romance in our Lives
Here are a few – The Passionate Pen; Ellor’s Cave (sexually explicit welcome); Evernight Publishing; Noble Romance; Romance at Heart; Total E-Bound; Treble Heart; Vintage Romance; Wild Rose Press. There are as many as there are for other genres but, as romance holds a place in my own scribblings, I find myself constantly reading and studying it.
When we took our first steps, romance entered our lives and it will still be in our hearts when we take our last so the importance of romance in our lives remains high so long as we have dreams in our hearts.
Remember, romance is not just about falling in love. For instance, romantic (e.g. Shabby and French chic) is a popular choice of decor. To me and other enthusiasts there is nothing more romantic than a pink and white room with white-painted French doors, dainty pieces of white-painted furniture, chandelliers, paintings, vases of pink and white roses, and knick knacks old and new.
Romance is Alive
If we choose to make romance the major theme in our lives then the wines we drink, our gardens, the clothes we wear, jewellery, and the books that we read can all have a romantic element in their makeup. Romance is all around us, it is a living breathing part of our lives and, for those of us who choose to write about it and view our world through rose-tinted glasses, what a lovely world it is that we live in.