By Jenny Holiday
1. In romance novels, the woman always wins.
Credit for this phrase goes to the fabulous Sarah Wendell, who runs the blog Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. Other people have said similar things. They’re right. In romance novels, things always work out for our heroine. She may have some bumps along the road, but she’s always redeemed—she gets what’s coming to her. I don’t know about you, but I like this model. We’re all worthy of love and deserving of happiness on our own terms, but let’s face it, in real life we don’t always get it. Critics call this “escapism.” I call it exposing yourself to happiness, which seems to me a totally logical move.
2. Romance novels put your expectations all out of whack.
People who don’t read romance novels like to criticize them by saying that they present fantasies and teach women to expect things they’re never going to get in this construct we call Real Life. (My Real Life includes the stories I read, but that’s another post.) You know what? Romance novels DO put your expectations out of whack. I don’t think enough of us expect enough. If I had a daughter, I would tell her not to settle in love or in life. And to keep reading.
3. Romance novels and the romance reading community are hotbeds of feminism.
Yes, really. Never have I encountered a more supportive, welcoming, like-minded group of women as I have among my fellow romance writers and readers. And they’re a tight bunch on Twitter. You can find your tribe with these ladies.
4. Romance is big business.
It’s a $1.08 billion dollar a year business, in fact, according to BookStats. And according to the documentary Love Between the Covers, 46 percent of romance readers read at least one book a week. That’s a lot of books.
5. You don’t have to worry about the embarrassing covers anymore!
E-books, my friends, e-books.
6. Why shouldn’t you? Because who doesn’t care about love? Who doesn’t want to find it?
I’m constantly mystified as to why romance novels, despite their blockbuster sales, don’t get more play in the mainstream (most publications that review books don’t review them, for example). Who doesn’t care about love? You know those stories you read about people on their deathbeds? What are their regrets? That they didn’t spend enough time working? Um, no. Love makes the world go round. It’s a cliché, but it’s true. So personally, I’m going to keep reading about it. (And if you want some recommendations, leave a comment telling me what your taste is like, and I’ll try to give you some titles.)
About Jenny Holiday:
Jenny Holiday started writing in fourth grade, when her awesome hippie teacher, between sessions of Pete Seeger singing and anti-nuclear power plant letter writing, gave the kids notebooks and told them to write stories. Most of Jenny’s featured poltergeist, alien invasions, or serial killers who managed to murder everyone except her and her mom. She showed early promise as a romance writer, though, because nearly every story had a happy ending: fictional Jenny woke up to find that the story had been a dream, and that her best friend, father, and sister had not, in fact, been axe-murdered. From then on, she was always writing, often in her diary, where she liked to decorate her declarations of existential angst with nail polish teardrops. Eventually she channeled her penchant for scribbling into a more useful format. After picking up a PhD in urban geography, she became a professional writer, and has spent many years promoting research at a major university, which allows her to become an armchair astronomer/historian/particle physicist, depending on the day. Eventually, she decided to try her hand again at happy endings–minus the bloodbaths.
Make sure you check out Jenny’s latest release, The Engagement Game.
Purchase The Engagement Game:
About the book:
What’s a little blackmail between friends…
The black sheep of the old-money Rosemanns, advertising executive Marcus has made his own way in the world—and done extremely well for himself—but his family is still pressuring him to join their investment firm and settle down with a quiet, unobjectionable girl.
Which is why the sexy Rose Verma is the perfect date for his family’s charity ball. A bleeding-heart lefty from the wrong side of the tracks, Rose has never met a stray dog she didn’t love or a polka-dotted mini-dress she couldn’t rock. Marcus has enough dirt on Rose to “convince” her to play along. And if he lets it slip that they’re engaged, all the better.
But all’s fair in love and blackmail, and Rose is ready to play a few cards of her own…