So, honestly? I don't know anything about romance novels. At all. Romance to me is, "I don't think he farted on me in his sleep last night". And while that's pretty fantastic and whatnot, it's really not what people want to read about. Unless that's your thing. I won't judge.
The whole story about why I'm now writing a romance novel is a very hilarious and profoundly painful one so I won't get into it now (or ever, probably) but somehow I found myself agreeing to try. Trying doesn't hurt anything, right? And if it's an abject failure, well, what else is new? Obviously the fear of failure has never stopped me before.
I haven't read very many romance novels. I can actually think of zero that I have read cover-to-cover. I think someone had given my mom a box of them at some point ("Your daughters like to read, right?") and they existed in that dusty cardboard out in our storage shed for quite some time. At one point I opened one and it said something about heaving bosoms and I dropped it and slinked away, mortified. I think I was ten.
Now that I'm presumably an adult and smart enough to know you have to do research on things I hauled my ass down to McKay Used Books and loaded up my basket with 25 cent mass market paperbacks. I was going to read them, learn from them, and by God, write one of my own.
But yeah. Not so much.
Because I'm apparently still a fourteen year old boy and when seeing the words wet, moist, and throbbing in print I dissolve into giggles. This can also explain why I have so very, very much trouble in relationships probably, but I honestly can't help it. It's my cross to bear.
Once I got past that, though, I gotta tell you. Some of the stories were really excellent. I loved the plot lines, I loved the twists and turns, and believe it or not, I actually thought a lot of the romantic parts were really sweet.
I never thought of romance novels as inferior literature, I just always thought of them as something that was not for me. Now, I'm not so sure. I mean some of them I'm not going to like...and that's no reflection on the work, at all. It's just the same as any other type of book. People castigate me when I admit I've never read Twilight and couldn't get into any of the Harry Potter books because those are some of the most popular books of all time. I guess it makes me weird, but not bad. I just have different taste.
But some of the romance novels I read were great stories. I was rooting for some of the characters, hoping they got together, hoping they worked it out. It was really eye-opening for me.
I've always said I need to write the script for my own life, so it wouldn't go quite as craptacularly as it seems to go. Maybe this will give me that chance.
But I'm not using the word "manhood". You can't make me.