She Writes WHAT?
First, a big thanks to Rosanna for having me today. I am excited to be here sharing a little bit of me with you and your readers.
As usual, when it comes to blogging I struggled with a topic and then inspiration struck when a good friend of mine asked me a certain question. The residual effects of that question left me pondering about exactly what our readers, friends and families think of romance writers.
Now this particular person and I have been friends for a long time though we don’t talk often. She’d heard some news about me and wanted to find out for herself if it was true. There is no accurate way to portray the conversation without a re-telling, bit by bit.
The conversation went a little something like this:
(For the sake of anonymity we’ll call my friend, well, we’ll call her Friend)
Friend: *gasp* “Are you a romance writer?” (It’s important to note here that she genuinely gasped which made me snicker, because, c’mon—I write romance, I don’t have Chlamydia with a topper of gonorrhea.)
Me: “Why, yes. Yes, I do write romance. Hot like fire romance. Why?”
Friend: *coughs* “Well, what do your, you know, your children think about that?”
Me: “They think it’s awesome. They’ve told their friends and I’m like the Queen of the Written Word now.” (Seriously, my kids have told all their friends—they’ve bragged about their mom who is a published author and could care less that it’s romance I write)
Friend: “Oh my God! You let them read it? I’ve seen your website—you write smut!” (There was this weird clicking I could hear over the phone. I think it may have been her dry throat opening as closing as she struggled to breathe around her horror.)
Me: “Of course, I let my, 12, 13 and 15 year old read my borderline erotic romance. Who wouldn’t? Would you like for me to forward you a copy for your kids?”
At that point, I could literally feel my friend’s desire to hang up. And at that point, I could’ve cared less. Really? She had not just asked me if I let my 12, 13 and 15 year olds read my romance novels? Had she lost her mind and more importantly, how in the name of all that’s Holy had we ever become friends? The anger was brewing in my gut, but I just couldn’t stop baiting her.
Me: “Wait, you already have a copy, right?”
Friend: “No, I don’t have a copy and I sure wouldn’t let my kids read it if I did. I can’t believe you let your kids read that…” (She trailed off and finally, I’d had enough)
Me: “To be honest with you, Friend, I haven’t really let my kids read it. They’re too young I couldn’t resist messing with you a little as you went off on your holier-than-thou rant. But let me tell you something, I will let them read it when I feel they’re old enough to understand the adult, mature dynamics between a man and a woman. I poured pieces of myself into that book and it’s something I’d not only let them read but that I’m PROUD of. Damn right, I’ll let them read it—I’ll even give them a FREE copy just because they’re my kids!”
There was silence at that point and I like to think she’d realized she’d upset me, but I didn’t hold out any great hope for this. The conversation ended shortly after my outburst.
My hope in sharing is simply this: Romance authors are normal, every day people who put their pants on one leg at a time. We have jobs, families, regular lives. We go to the grocery store, do laundry, take our kids to cheerleading or soccer—we even go to church if we’re so inclined. We engage in the same activities as every other person on God’s green earth does, we just happen to write love stories.
Now, I don’t know many who writers who would let their adolescent children read their writing but the thing is, my friend knows me. Had she taken even one second to see past the words ROMANCE WRITER, her assertion would never have happened. She let the fact that I write romance blind her to anything else. As if romance was a dirty word. And then she called it smut, which just pushed my button. I’ll share a little secret here with you: she and I used to swap paperback romances when we were younger. So where all the snobbishness came from, I have no idea.
Bottom line, I write what’s in my heart, what my characters give me. Romance is some of the most honest writing I’ve ever encountered and I both read and write it because at the heart of the stories—underneath any sexual content—is the truest emotion any of us could feel … love.
When you speak to a romance author remember that they are amazing people with amazing stories. There may be sex, eroticism or heat that makes you blush between the pages of their books, but they have brains and hearts and *gasp* moral codes. So if you have a friend who writes romance—give them a high five or a hug or buy their book in support. Don’t ask inane questions about whether they let their children read their stuff—you know these people or you wouldn’t call them friend.
So this ended up being a pretty easy post. I got to vent a little and ended up kinda high-fiving myself for not going ballistic. My friend eventually apologized and told me she bought my new release, Retrieval. We kissed and made up like all good friends do but I will forever tease her about this conversation. We’ll keep it between you and I that a tiny evil part of me wants to give her oldest daughter a copy of one of my books for graduation. We shall see… LOL!
Now go high-five your favorite author and tell her I said to do it. And keep reading!
Rosanna? Thank you so much for having me. I brought a little excerpt of my new scifi romance release, Retrieval. I’m sure Sebastian and Skylar don’t care if you share it.
Skylar is the hunted. Fashioned for the sole purpose of destruction, she has spent her entire life running from the evil scientist who created her, her father. When a team of retrieval experts hired by her father track her down, neither Skylar nor the team’s leader is prepared for the magnetic attraction that will not let them go. In the midst of danger, with their lives on the line, they forge a bond so tight only death could break it. Together they will fight an egomaniacal scientist as well as their explosive desire for one another to discover what true power is.
The woman was a complete surprise. If he’d had proof that his objectives were capable of doing what he’d been told they were, Sebastian would’ve let this entire mission pass. Realist that he was, he’d told himself nothing like what Dr. Dolan Smythe-Ward had told them was possible. Surely not from the petite, extremely sexy woman he’d just seen.
Damn if she hadn’t given him and his men the slip. One minute she and her sisters had been in the hallway, and the next they, or rather a pretty picture of them, were boarding the elevator. Neither he nor his men had been able to move to catch them. She hadn’t restrained them physically. Oh, hell no. He could’ve fought that. She’d prevented him from being able to command his body to movement. That was unacceptable. His men would want to discuss it later. He felt a headache inching its way up the back of his skull. He was disgusted with the entire situation.
She’d stopped him in his tracks, and that was before she’d looked at him in the cafeteria like she wanted to inhale him and dive in for seconds. Nah, it’d happened weeks ago, the first time he’d seen her picture while making the decision to take this job.
Damn! When he’d seen her walk into the lunchroom, his entire body had gone on alert. Deep inside of him, need had taken root. It was the closest he’d physically been to her, and he’d not been prepared. Lust of that magnitude was beyond his scope of experience.
She was short, no more than five feet two inches. That put her more than a whole foot shorter than he was. One look into her eyes, and he’d wanted to stand over her, protect her from the world that was fast closing in on her and her sisters. Was she in danger now? Yeah, she’s in danger. She just stopped your ass cold. She can probably take care of herself.
Fine-boned, creamy golden skin and deep auburn hair that held shades of the darkest night and the noonday sun, she surpassed beautiful. Her eyes, slightly upturned like a cat’s, were the purest whiskey-gold color he’d ever seen on a person. Her mouth was a perfect coral-pink bow, and when she’d licked her lips after drinking that damn juice earlier, he’d almost lost his mind. She was lush, curvy in all the right places, and she loved to laugh. Out of all the things that attracted him, it was the woman’s laugh that kept him hard and up all night. Through the bugs they’d placed outside her residence, he’d listened to her talk to her sisters for hours. They argued, debated, and made jokes. Her laughter gutted him, but at the same time it was the ultimate high.
It made him uncomfortable. She made him uncomfortable. There was something about this woman that drove him to another level of awareness. When their eyes met earlier, and she’d begun moving toward him, he’d felt an inexplicable pull toward her. The want had been a textural strand between them. It had taken his entire fifteen years of combat training to keep him rooted in his seat. He’d wanted to meet her ass halfway, tackle her to the floor, and claim her—for hours. It’d been a really close thing. His control had been seriously tested.
If he wasn’t careful, he’d lose objectivity. He’d much rather be on the trigger end of a gun than looking down the barrel of one. She boggled his mind. Maybe he’d be better off just calling quits on this job right now.
He’d innately known that the women remained in the corridor. His neck had prickled, and his gut had tightened. If he were a betting man, he’d have laid odds that Morrissey, Bleak and Rover had felt them too. But with an inability to actually see them, he could only get himself ready for tracking them down. He’d felt her turn back toward him, and his entire body had tingled for a few seconds before her presence retreated. He really did not need this crazy shit in his life right now.
He and Rover made their way to the exit to begin the hunt. God help them all when they met up again. He wouldn’t allow her to leave him a second time.
to read her mother’s romance novels at a young age. She cut her teeth on the
greats: McNaught, Woodiwiss, and Garwood. A firm believer that love makes the
world go round, she still consumes every romance book she can put her hands on,
but now she writes her own. Griffith
Lea lives with her husband and three teenage daughters in rural
dogs, a cat, and a beta fish named Coddy George complete a family that is
always in motion. When not working at the EDJ, she’s usually at her keyboard,
using every spare second to write. Shifters, artificial intelligence, and gene
splicing, oh my! Nothing is off-limits when it comes to her writing. Georgia
Retrieval book links: