I feel so privileged to be able to write this stuff, you have no idea! When I started thinking about writing romances, umpedy-ump years ago, I started researching the market and the first thing I came across was walls. And doors, firmly closed, with a NO ENTRY tape across the doorway. It was amazing how many NOs there were:
- NO sports heroes
- NO musicians
- NO odd jobs
- NO odd nationalities
The list goes on and on. Together with, of course, all the bans on describing the physical side of the love affair.
Erotic romance blew all of that right out of the water, bless the readers who loved this stuff. Erotic romance just opened the whole field right up. When you have seven-foot tall, 600 year-old vampires, a football star hero seems tame.
I’ve had several editors as an erotic romance writer and not a one ever said NO to anything. The editors’ only concern was a good story, but nothing was off bounds.
For me, personally, I was able to finally just jettison (with heartfelt gratitude) that old romance cliché of The Conflict. You know the one — he’s a firefighter, she’s an arsonist, yada yada. I particularly HATED those novels where the hero despises the heroine, or, more rarely, vice versa, until on the second to the last page, where he discovers that she’s not the slut/killer of his brother/person responsible for the family bankruptcy he thought she was. I truly hate it when the hero dislikes the heroine because I figure it’s hard to get over those emotions. But that’s me. I think a man and a woman trying to live together for a lifetime generates quite enough conflict right there, thank you very much. Or if conflict there has to be, it should come from the outside world or at most a clash of moral stances, where they’re both right. Not where the hero is a dense dickhead who can’t see what’s right in front of his eyes.
So erotic romance has allowed me to write the stories I love to write. Where the hero and heroine actually like and respect each other, right from the start. They might not UNDERSTAND each other, and there might be huge obstacles along the way, but never doubt that my hero and heroine are committed to each other, and would quite literally die for each other.
(Originally published on August 21, 2007 at The Good, The Bad and The Unread)