See ya around

Jeffe Kennedy

Jeffe Kennedy at RT 2013

I suck at good-byes. Hate ‘em, hate ‘em, hate ‘em. Yeah, I hate ‘em.

So this isn’t good-bye. I’ll see all of you again…somewhere. In person or online.

I’m so lucky to have spent this time with such caring, fun, and talented authors. Most of them I didn’t know before Reese Ryan brought us all together. Heck, I didn’t know Reese. We still haven’t met for reals, but I know if I ever get to her part of the world, I can call her and say, “Let’s get together,” and she’ll move heaven and earth (although probably not a deadline) to make it happen. And if she ever gets to my part of the world and doesn’t let me know, I’ll get pissy and stamp my “little” foot.

Leah Braemel, Maggie Wells, Lynda Aicher, Samantha Ann King at RT 2013

From left to right: Leah Braemel, Maggie Wells, Lynda Aicher, Samantha Ann King
RT Conference 2013

When this blog began, I only knew Jeffe Kennedy. Had met her a couple of years earlier thanks to a virtual introduction. Since Jeffe lives only an hour from me, that virtual introduction led to a corporeal one at a local RWA chapter meeting.

Lilay Santana, Samantha Ann King, Lynda Aicher

From left to right: Lily Santana, Samantha Ann King, Lynda Aicher

I was thrilled to meet Maggie Wells, Leah Braemel, Lynda Aicher, and Lily Santana at my first RT Conference in Kansas City, just as this blog launched. Because of them, that first conference was so much less scary and so much more fun. And when I visited Portland a few months later, Lynda, Lily and I shared a meal and the kind of weird and wonderful conversation unique to writers. I met Sandy James at RWA in San Antonio and enjoyed a long chat over a Carina sponsored breakfast. Really cool since I was a Sandy James fan before the Contemporary Romance Café came to be.

I’m looking forward to meeting the rest of the Café contributors at conferences or book-signings, over a meal or a drink or a cup of tea. Until then…

See that woman sneaking out of the party without saying good-bye. That’s me. I’ll see ya around!

Didn’t We Have Fun?

Farewell courtesy of Sophia Louise

It feels so strange to be making my final post here at the Contemporary Romance Cafe. There’s a sense of sadness, but there is also a sense of serenity, knowing that collectively we made the right decision to close the … Continue reading

When Jo Didn’t Pick Laurie (or Why I Write Romance)

Winona Ryder and Christian Bale as Jo March and Laurie.

As we enter a New Year, I am reminded of some of the many reasons I’m compelled to write stories of love, contentious families and protagonists struggling to discover their authentic selves. I was revising a line of my upcoming … Continue reading

Playing by the Rules — a Valentine’s Day romance

Playing by the Rules by Reese Ryan

I missed my post last month when we all shared our holiday romances. Primarily because I was finishing up my first holiday-themed romance. So I’m bending the rules a smidgen and sharing it today. Playing by the Rules is the prequel novel … Continue reading

Here Comes the Sun, Little Darlings

Walkin' on Sunshine. Photo courtesy of Cam Miller.

  Today’s post is brought to you by Señor Sol, kind enough to make its first appearance in nearly two weeks. Oh how I’ve missed you! It’s been twelve consecutive days of rain here in North Carolina. We’ve all gotten a … Continue reading

The Makings of a Complex Character: Mr. Robot and Orphan Black

Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black. Courtesy of BBC America.

This month we’re introducing characters from our books. As the person kicking off the month’s topic, I should be a very good girl and introduce you to the dark and mysterious Raine Mason from my debut novel, Making the First Move. Or … Continue reading

Sex, Food and Rock n Roll

Making the First Move by Reese Ryan

It’s often said that, as writers, there is a little of us in each of our characters. On many levels I find that scary. But there is definitely some truth to it. A part of me that often seeps into my … Continue reading

Celebrating Diversity in Romance (or Why #WeNeedDiverseRomance)

The Brightest Day: A Juneteenth Historical Romance Anthology by Kianna Alexander, Alyssa Cole, Lena Hart and Piper Huguley

I’ve always enjoyed experiencing and learning about other cultures. Mediterranean, Thai and Indian foods are among my favorite. I am endlessly fascinated by the beauty found in other cultures. Ancient sculptures, paintings and architecture. Colorful, elegant saris. The beautiful, dark … Continue reading

Inspiring Places: The Costa Rica Edition

Costa Rica. Courtesy of Arturo Sotillo.

Hi. I’m Reese Ryan, and I have an addiction. To HGTV home improvement shows. It may seem innocent enough. But given the network’s propensity for the all day marathon, this addiction can easily steal half a day. A day I’d … Continue reading

Why I love Jonny Lee Miller’s Sherlock Holmes on #Elementary

Lucy Liu and Jonny Lee Miller portray Joan Watson and Sherlock Holmes on Elementary.

It’s no secret that I have a deep and abiding love for flawed, damaged characters. However, creating the perfect flawed characters invites flirtation with risk. Such characters tread a perilous line between likability and utter loathing. For instance, at one … Continue reading