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Classic Romance and Me

I’m not entirely sure when I became a romantic.

romantic quote

I’m not entirely sure when I became a romantic. I was pretty young when I started loving romantic movies and books. I know I was too young to BE in love, but I wasn’t too young to BELIEVE in love. 

I know the YA fiction I read back then was barely romantic by today’s standards. The couple might exchange a kiss at the end of the book. I loved them because they were romantic and safe—as in a safe place for me explore my own young stirrings. 

And book boyfriends were easier than real ones, particularly when you are thirteen. Lol

Books helped me vicariously experience emotions I wasn’t ready to experience in real life. 

I think that makes me vintage and old-fashioned. Lol

And I don’t mind. 

I’ve read a lot of discussions on Facebook about tropes, themes, plot elements, character elements—even how explicit readers prefer their romance books. 

The most recent was a discussion about women characters, how old they should be, their body size, hair color, and more. And then one reader said she just read the books for the adventure and the romance. She didn’t care about anything but a good story that pulled her in. 

She could have been me. She wasn’t, but I was like, yes, that’s me. I don’t read to become the character. I read to become lost in the story. My only requirement is that I like the people in a story since I’ll be spending time with them. 

And I like my romance books to feel like the story will go on after I close the book. 

Yup, I like a happy-ever-after. 

I know that real life is real and challenging, but reality is for real life, not for my reading. 

But I also know that this is a very personal choice. I’ve tried a wide variety of books in my years as a reader and gradually honed my reading preferences to my rather vintage choices. 

I’ve also homed in on the books I like to write. After all, I have to “read” my own books over and over again during the writing process. So I have to write something I like to read. 

So, you might share my reading preferences if:

1. You need a happy-ever-after

2. You like adventure and danger without the gritty details.

3. You like your romance romantic, also without a lot of details

4. You like a sense of humor in your books

You also might like my books if you don’t mind:

1. Tall female characters (short person writing!)

2. You don’t mind the occasional female character with red hair (always wished I’d had red hair, sigh)

3. Characters with a variety of eye color because I wish I had a more interesting eye color

4. Heroes who are heroic and nice guys. Even my “bad boys” turn out to actually be nice guys. 

When I write, my books feel true to me, possibly because my own romance is true. The hubs and I celebrated 46 years of marriage last month. It’s not the fairy tale or even the fictional romance. It’s real and human and has had its highs and lows. But we’re still together—just as I hope my characters are. 

What brings you to a book? What pushes you away? 

Perilously yours,

Pauline

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