Anyway, so you have eight strangers who meet for the first time at the alter and I'm so intrigued I couldn't look away if I tried!! You can see straight away who hits it off and who has their walls up and who is having such second thoughts that they almost throw up before the I dos. It got me thinking that maybe this is one of the reasons that skeptics and non-romantics won't read our books. They just don't believe that love at first sight actually exists. I totally think it does! I fell for my hubby over the space of a weekend. Sure we were young and dumb and moved at a pace that would scare most adults (within 6 months we were living together and I wasn't even 17 yet!!) but half my life later, we're coming up for our 17 year anniversary, we have 2 kids and a house, and all that life together entails. My best friend met her husband while on vacation in India and before anyone knew it, they were planning a life together.
Is it that skepticism that keeps romance novels in the raised brow category by the more literary inclined? Is it that our normal boring non-spontaneous lives keep us in a permanent state of meh? I was a lover of romance novels well before I ever thought about writing one. Well before I even realised I had characters banging on the walls in my mind wanting out. I fall on love with the idea that the two characters are going to get their happily ever after no matter what is thrown at them in between. Are the journeys sometimes unbelievable? Of course, but you have to suspend the disbelief and just know that it's all going to work out because it's fantasy. If boy met girl, fell in love, boy cheated and girl cried, it's not a romance. If one of the main characters is dead before the end, it's not a romance. We want the guaranteed HEA. The reason I loved Twilight so much is the love story. It's why I also enjoy Vampire Diaries and Grey's Anatomy and even Bones. It's the build up that keeps you on the edge of your seat with the will-they-won't-they and then the ahhhh moment when they do even though we saw it coming from a mile away.
Is that what keeps you coming back to romance time and again. Or is it because, like my hubby who is yelling at the rugby on the telly behind me, you are lacking a little romance in your life? Some ask if it's okay to find it between the covers of a book and I say, Hell Yeah!! Smart women know what's realistic. Smart women know not to look for the kind of heroics from the books in real life guys. Unfortunately (and sorry to my hubby who really is awesome but thinks woo is when he does the dishes for me) he usually doesn't exist. If you found him, your real life Fabio, then hold onto him with one hand and have a romance novel in the other.
Escapism is the key for romance and for fantasy and even those who read crime. No one is living these things in their real lives (I am assuming) so we, as authors, create the stories for you to escape into. I'm so proud and humbled at the same time that I might be able to bring a few days of peace to an otherwise maybe tumultuous time in a life. I know romance novels have pulled me through a tough time or two when I've been on my ass and unable to get around.
So never be ashamed of watching programs like The Bachelor (another of my faves) or reading romance or loving Twilight. We all do what we can to get through and I'd rather not be bogged down with all the meh. Pick up a romance novel and take a break from reality. If it's been a while or you have never given one a go (although I'm not sure how you would have wound up here on this page) pick up a romance novel and read it from start to finish. Happily Ever After guaranteed =)