I wrote on Facebook recently my challenge to remain positive in what seems a Tsunami of awful news throughout the world of late, and I received many encouraging remarks and virtual hugs. I can’t express how much that means, and truly makes a difference, in how I feel.
I believe we can all, at times, lose sight of how many good people there are in the world, and in particular our own life, especially when social media and the daily news froths with hateful and hurtful rhetoric and events. Being reminded we’re loved, and reminding others we love them, is honestly, the balm that soothes. Wine helps. But love heals.
This is the theme at the heart of every Romance. And I know it’s the reason I gravitated to writing Romance despite having spent the majority of my childhood and adult life reading mysteries and crime and psych-thriller novels.
Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, Robert Ludlum, James Lee Burke, Robert B. Spenser, Michael Connelly, Iris Johansen, Lee Child, Jonathan Kellerman… these were my go-to authors for years. Decades. But in the last decade or so, I found myself bypassing all but JLB/MC/ and LC and reaching for Elizabeth Hoyt. Grace Burrowes. Karen Ranney. Jo Bourne. Roxanne Snopek. Jillian Harris. Deanna Raybourn. Isobel Carr. I found myself looking for the HEA (Happy Ever After). And not just looking, but needing, the HEA to keep me centered, as I turned off CSI, Criminal Minds, and Blue Bloods. Reading—and writing—Romance gives me that. Gives me hope. Keeps me grounded.
Romance is something every human seeks, whether consciously or no. Even the super-macho self-professed forever bachelor enjoys the chase, if not the capture. Romance is always part of the chase. Ask any introvert who falls in love with a TV-screen persona, and avidly follows an actor/actress’s Twitter or IG feed to nurture romantic fantasy, or uses the heartthrob’s photo as a smartphone screensaver, hangs the fantasy-lover’s pic on the bathroom mirror, all in an effort to reap daily doses of romantic possibility. We’ve all done it to some degree.
I had pictures of Sean Cassidy and Leif Garrett on my walls as a teen. Fell hard for the Fonz. Can’t get enough of Sam Elliott. Would not turn down a date with Garth Brooks (sorry Honey!!). Of course, now, a married woman with four children and a grandchild, it’s not considered mature, or in good taste, to paste pictures of men other than my husband on the bathroom mirror (except maybe my grandson. ?), or set my ringtone to the theme from Magnum PI. That’s where Romance comes in.
All the fantasy. All the hope. All the ability to resolve differences, identify and shore up personal hurts and weaknesses, build connections, and forge lifelong friendships—find love—without the tacky tape residue or weird looks.
The world needs less weird looks and more love.
I strive to offer love daily to the people in my life, and to readers through my books. Hope. Possibility. Redemption. Resolution. Faith… Love.
We need it.
I need it.
The world needs it.
Thank you everyone who offered a like, or heart, or supportive comment on my Facebook post, and thank you all who add colour and texture to my life. Reader, writer, family… friend.
Thank you, as well, the brave men and women who sacrificed, and continue to sacrifice, so much to protect our country, our democracy, our privileged way of life. Yours is the ultimate love.
Please take a moment this month to remember those who gave all. And, if you do nothing else the rest of this year, give nothing else the rest of this year, do, and give, love. It does a heart, body and mind—a world—good.
To laugh often and much;
To win the respect of intelligent people, and the affection of children;
To earn the appreciation of honest critics, and endure the betrayal of false friends;
To appreciate beauty;
To find the best in others;
To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition;
To know that even on life has breathed easier because you lived.
This is to have succeeded. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson