Descriptions for heat levels in book list

------holding hands, perhaps a gentle kiss
♥♥ ---- more kisses but no tongue-- no foreplay
♥♥♥ ---kissing, tongue, caressing, foreplay & pillow talk
♥♥♥♥ --all of above, full sexual experience including climax
♥♥♥♥♥ -all of above including coarser language and sex more frequent

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Romance adventures

If you've ever read romances, you already know that within the broad genre, there are many sub-genres; so it's not so simple that you just write a romance. Readers have definite preferences although a few, like myself, bounce between genres. It is wise as a writer to figure out each book's genre if you hope to reach its most likely readers.

 image purchased from CanStock

How much sex is one of those issues. There are many options. It can be sweet, spicy or erotic. Even within a plot type, it can be any of those. Some rank the sex from 1 to 5 with 5 meaning anything pretty much goes. 1, of course, is sweet kisses and no tongue-- think Jane Austen where there might not even be a kiss.

A romance will also be set into a category that is defined by its time period-- contemporary, historical or future? Future times are fantasy to some level.

In each time period, you can find romances that are sci fi; time travel, erotica; inspirational; suspense; mystery; paranormal; multicultural; adventure; and what might be termed chick lit not to mention standard literature which is where you often find Nicholas Sparks books even though they are clearly romances. 

Historical can be any of the above as well as what nation and what time period. A lot of writers, and I am one, tend to stay within a nation. I write about the American West whether its historical or contemporary because it's what I know. If I was into traveling and spent time say in England regularly, I might've chosen to write then as I enjoy reading English history in a romance.

Well, I did when I had time to read for pleasure. Right now I barely can read a novella or skim through a book that I don't expect to be demanding-- other than when the latest Longmires come out. Addictions must be fed, dontchaknow. Otherwise I guess I prefer reading contemporaries (at the moment) but that changes when an exciting possibility comes along to tempt me into someone's historical.

I like contemporaries because the women are more like I am. The expectations and her possibilities are endless. The books I write and enjoy reading often involve a criminal element with maybe an investigator which could be her, him or both. It's fun to read something about a woman who could be me but isn't. And who what she goes through I'd never want to but have fun being there for a few hours in the safety of my Kindle.

Many readers only read within a specific genre. Others move around from one to another field. I am not sure what's better from a writer's standpoint. I have heard that the most popular historical romances are set in England but I personally prefer them set in America.

What I write, always are stories about couples who are falling in love or rediscovering their love while they wrestle with an emotional complication and face a danger. I want adventure along with the romance. I want a situation that tests these two people against  the elements or an enemy. I've only written a few stories where that isn't the case.

In romances there is always a conflict between these two potential lovers. I want that to be believable without some kind of phony conflict that literally makes no sense other than a writer's fun. My own writing makes me very picky about the books I read and where another reader might love some element that to me seems forced, I will be grumbling. I think writing yourself both adds to and detracts probably from enjoying reading your own genre.

4 comments:

Tabor said...

I no longer read romances, but was addicted when I was younger. I also found that the writer is key in any sex scenes. A number one can be just as breathtaking and hot as a number 5. And if poorly written a number 5 can be a bore.

Rain Trueax said...

I go in spurts on what I read, Tabor. Romances have changed a lot since the first ones with stronger women and harder often to draw the line between romance and straight literature. The main thing though is that a romance, no matter how much angst the characters go through, and there can be plenty if there is some kind of really dangerous element, it will end happily. I get enough unhappy endings in life without suffering through them in a book.

I learned something interesting in researching my new book as I went back into my older history books I found their bindings not holding up well and they were harder to read than the history books I'd gotten for the Kindle. It surprised me but then those books are probably 30 years old and have set scrunched into a bookcase most of that time. The paperbacks suffered more than the hardbacks but I don't like the weight of reading a hardback anymore. Currently nonfiction history is all I've had time to read but I now consider my Kindle a better repository of them--- assuming they keep making Kindles ;)

Dick said...

I think most fiction has elements of romance included as most stories have males and females and there is usually some sort of a love/romance element. I have purchased (I think) all of your stories but so far only read two. I did enjoy them but am more drawn to mysteries and maybe scifi. I have looked at a few that were called romance stories but got so fed up with ridiculous things like both the male and female continuously worrying about really minor things that you know will not matter in the overall scheme of the story. Maybe they are moving away from that and going to more realistic relationships.

Rain Trueax said...

I think you can still find silly stories out there, Dick. I try not to have that be mine. I always think my heroes should make men like the books as they are strong and interesting. Often they do have some dangerous obstacle to overcome. In the western historical, Arizona Sunset, that was certainly the case. I have appreciated you giving the books a chance ;)