Back to My Contemporary Roots

NoraRobertsIslandofFlowersI love contemporary romance. When I was twelve, Nora Roberts’s “Island of Flowers” was the first romance I ever read. It was such a perfect love story, I was forever hooked on romance. More, my heart cried out. I had to have more!

I devoured every traditional Harlequin romance I could get my hands on, but soon it wasn’t enough. My addiction quickly led me from the world of contemporary to the darker worlds of paranormal, suspense and fantasy. I was a reading machine, but even that wasn’t enough. So I began to write what I wanted to read. At the age of fourteen I completed my first book, a horrendous suspense story full of plot holes and a virginal kid’s idea of what sex was supposed to be. Then I wrote a whole series dealing with a werewolf family that I assure you will NEVER see the light of day.  After that, an alien abduction story that never had an ending (thank goodness. There were probes involved).

My hopscotching tendencies are evident even now. I’ve published projects ranging from cyberpunk to paranormal, but recently my projects have been returning to their contemporary roots. Instead of external pressures like hiding super powers or skipping through parallel universes, I’m once again falling in love with the internal struggles of two independent people fighting to become a single, harmonious unit. The angst and inner tug-of-war to create a new life together is so deliciously appealing that it’s lured me back to giving it a new–and passionate–voice.

UGLY DUCKLINGS FINISH FIRST, the first book in my small-town contemporary romance series (tentatively entitled Bitterthorn, Texas), is coming out August 5th of this year, with a Christmassy follow-up in A CRAVING FOR COOKIES, one half of Carina Press’s military homecoming holiday duology (the lovely Rebecca Crowley makes up the other half, and according to our editor, our readers need to stock up on their Kleenex ^_^).  A BIG thank-you goes out to Angela James, who snapped up  UGLY DUCKLINGS after tweeting her desire to get her hands on small-town romances, and to Andrea Kerr, my amazing editor who’s seen me through my futuristic and paranormal phases with her sanity (hopefully) entact.  Hang on tight, Andrea–this ride through the seemingly quiet streets of Bitterthorn is just getting started. 😉

My hopscotching journey led me back to the magic of falling in love. My question is, what is it that draws you to the wonderful world of contemporary romance?

Note: Enter our weekly $25 Amazon Gift Card Drawing below. Enter here to win our Grand Prize.


Back to My Contemporary Roots — 15 Comments

  1. I love the story of your circling journey through genres, and can’t wait for the Bitterthorn series!

    And do you still have copies of your earliest “works”? My first effort (age 16) was a pretty horrendous historical romance about the English Civil War (nerd much?). I don’t know where it is now, which is a shame since it could lead to a good game of I’ll-show-you-mine-if-you-show-me-yours…

    • Ha! Oh my goodness, can you imagine the laughs?? And I think I did keep the first book…I think. Maybe. One thing I do know–I’m not going to go look for it. 😀

      Thanks for commenting, duology sister! 😀

    • *laughs* Those first works are p a i n f u l, aren’t they? But they were steps we all had to take to learn how to write (or in my case, how NOT to write, heh).

  2. I too started out on Nora Roberts. I like all types of romance really but what I love about contemporary romance is you get to see real people, in real situations, fall in love and that is special. Plus usually there is a lot of humor and wit thrown in which I like

    • I wonder if NR knows how many romance fans she’s personally responsible for? :) And I agree that’s a huge draw, Shannon–I also feel I can relate to contemporary romance completely, which gives me that “total immersion” feeling. I LOVE that. :)

      Thanks for dropping by!

  3. I started with Nora too! My first was her first, Irish Thoroughbred. I still have my original copy and a few years ago she was sweet enough to sign it for me. Thanks for sharing the story of your love affair with contemporary romance!

    • OMG, I still have Irish Thoroughbred on my bookshelf!!! *muppet flails* Isn’t it crazy how you remember your first romance novel? It’s like a life-altering experience, isn’t it? ^_^

    • It’s so great to know I’m not alone! That might be a great blog subject, now that I think about it. Something like, “True Confessions of Romance Writers: Those First Efforts That Stank Up The Universe”. Or something like that. *gigglesnort*

      Thanks for stopping in, Gillian! ^_^

    • Yay, you just made me smile, Lori! May I suggest keeping an eye on Carina Press’s contemporary romance releases? Some truly amazing authors have books that have just been released or are coming up in the schedule, including Liz Flaherty, Shannon Stacey, Christi Barth, Fiona Lowe, Darcy Daniels, Brighton Walsh, Reese Ryan… Omigosh, the list goes on and on when it comes to love stories with that welcoming, small town feel. I can’t wait to dive in and start reading. <3

      Thanks so much for dropping by! :)

  4. My first love was historical romance. So everyone who knew me was surprised when I wrote and published a contemporary. Myself included. I’m still enjoying the genre–reading and writing.

    • Aha! So you’re another genre hopscotcher! (<–new word, heh.) We need to stick together, maybe even start our own club and have a secret handshake or something. 😀

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *