Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Heart of Romance

I wanted to wish everyone a very Happy New Year and hope y'all had a very Merry Christmas... or whatever holiday you celebrated.

I'd like to say that I spent my New Year in some wild fashion. That I pulled on my thigh-high stilettos and partied the night away. But that would be pure fantasy, and while there's nothing wrong with fantasy I wanted to delve into what happens AFTER the fantasy.

I have become very much a homebody since I got married and had children. I still occasionally go out with girlfriends but that's not my life. What did I do for New Year's Eve and Day? I pulled on my soft and comfy pjs and watched the inebriated masses on The Strip... on TV from the comfort of my home. I snuggled down next to my hubby and laughed as my children pranced around the house with their "leprechaun" hats (my boys' words not mine) and beads and blowers and poppers that blew forth a huge mess for me to clean up and silly jokes and cheap party favors for my kids to ooh and aah over. Yes, almost all my kids lasted... almost longer than I did. The littlest one gave up the battle around 10:30 but the rest of them rang in the New Year and drank sparkling grape juice with us.

On New Year's Day I stayed in my jammies, picked up the mess and snuggled some more with my hubby. I laughed with my kids as they trudged through the house. "Not so much fun the next day is it?" LOL, maybe they'll remember that lesson as they get older... somehow I doubt it.

What does this have to do with romance? Gimme a minute, I'm getting to that. As I sat on the couch with my darling husband's head in my lap as I ran my fingers through his hair and watched a Bond movie with him (not my favorite movie, but I told him to choose) I realized that THIS was what Romance was all about. This was why I loved reading and writing Romance. The After... after the wedding and the moving in together and the... well the hot sweaty sex... this is what is at the heart of Romance.

The ability to sit and touch and laugh with my beloved, to just be and to know that whenever we get the chance we'll be doing the same thing again. That is what I ultimately want my stories to be all about. I love reading about characters after their story is done. It's like meeting up with best friends for lunch to see how their lives are going. I love peeking back in and seeing them in those same moments I shared with the love of my life this past weekend. That to me is the true heart of romance and what we all eventually strive for, whether we write over-the-top BDSM erotic romance, Male/Male romance, LGBT, straight-sweet romance or any other variation you can think of. What we're striving for is those connections that make you and your characters sigh and smile and know that life is really worth living. No, I don't live a very exciting life... unless you count running to and from Scouts and teaching ballet or running the Gauntlet that is the grocery store with four children in tow... but it's my life, and it's the result of my very own Happy Ever After and I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. And that... that is what I want every single one of my characters to experience.

How about you? How did you spend your holiday? Is that what you aim for with your writing as well? I know I've been a bit... absent lately, but I really want to know what y'all think.

1 comment:

Helen Hardt said...

You're so right -- it's all about the romance! It's the emotion that gets me in a story. No matter how much hot sweaty sex there is between the pages, if the emotional connection isn't there, I don't get those belly tugs ;).