The writing of romance began for me as a marketing decision (at least that's what I told myself), but has since grown into a more spiritual exercise. When I first started reading about romance, and learned the massive market share the genre holds, it seemed like a reasonable place for a beginning author to break in. After all, they publish tons of books, and somebody has to write them--might as well be me, right?
Finding the heart of why I enjoyed reading romance, though, was more complicated. The first time I picked up a romance book, I was eight months pregnant and desperate to read something with some sex in it. I'd read mostly science fiction and fantasy up until that point, a genre where the characters have an annoying tendency to shut the doors before getting it on. Unfortunately, the only books I had were Harlequin Presents (purchased by my husband so he could get some free wine glasses we didn't even need), so I didn't get much of what I thought I was after. But I found something else.
In the romance genre I discovered recurring themes of love's ability to conquer human frailties. The modern version stresses the equality of men and women, featuring couples that not only care for but complete each other. These uplifting stories are told against an almost mythical structure that takes characters to the limits of their endurance and back, triumphant.
And people have the nerve to call them trash. Humph.
Anyway, I went from reading to writing and eventually to selling, and now I find myself smack in the middle of an epic tale of vampirism, squeezing itself out of my psyche about a hundred pages at a time. For me the vampire represents the ultimate of outcasts, especially in today's society, rife with incurable blood-born diseases. What happens to these dark, tortured outcasts in the crucible of physical and spiritual transformation?
How should I know? I'm still working on Book Three. But The Vampire Apocalypse series is taking me places I never thought I would go in my writing, melding threads of historical fiction with romance, horror, and some rather bizarre mythology tossed in on the side.
So that's me, and that's my current release, and that's just under 400 words according to my trusty laptop. I look forward to further meanderings.