Hope for the Future -- Working Together

Like many Americans, I am a bit stressed at the moment. The lack of ability to have a civil discourse, and the lack of respect for others is getting to me. When that happens, I need news about what IS working.

Glasnevin Cemetery

Glasnevin Cemetery, creative commons license by William Murphy

So here is […]

What Does a Romance Reader Want?

There has been a great deal of uproar in the romance author community lately. If you are not a big fan of conflict over what is or is not proper in a romance novel, this might be a post you want to skip.

WARNING: This post discusses sex, racism, and has opinions.

First of all there is the discussion about how much sex is too much sex. Is clean the right term? Does that imply […]

Enjoying Country Music Romance -- Stories About Love

I never thought I’d be a fan of country music, or of the mushy country music romance embedded in its lyrics. Although I watched Gene Autry and Roy Rogers as a kid and loved the music, the twangy sound of most country music was something I simply couldn’t get past. I sensed there was something I was missing, but it took me a long time to find it.

I’m grateful country music has evolved beyond […]

Talk It Out: The Key to Relationships

Holding hands, photo by RichardBH

Creative Commons License; Photo by RichardBH

Recently my newly married personal trainer asked me, “What’s the key to making a relationship work?”

After I wrenched my mind from concentrating on rolling my thighs on the hard foam roller (painful relief …), I gave him the one word answer I […]

Hurricanes, Love, and the Greek Definitions of Love

Hurricane by Florida

Creative Commons License — Photo by kakela

As I write this, our southeast coast is bracing for Hurricane Mathew. It will be another test of how much we can love one another. Not romantic love–although that’s always possible–but the human being to human being caring. We’ve seen it before. Times like when the towers came […]

Independent Book Stores and Romance

I love independent book stores. I hate that independents have a thing about romance.

“Our customers don’t read romance,” they say.

Even down 11% from the previous, romance readers bought 30,885 thousand copies in 2014, higher than any other Adult Fiction category except General Fiction which sold 36,314 thousand copies according to Publisher’s Weekly. I’m not sure who independent bookstores think is buying all those books.

I’ve heard owners of independent bookstores complain about […]

Independence Day: A Romance Writer's Thoughts

As I write this, it’s Independence Day. While it can mean parades, fireworks, and barbecues, it seems right to examine what I need (or don’t need) to achieve independence. Of course, independence means different things to different people, and some of it depends on the circumstances of your life.

For years, programs like The Hunger Project, have strived to end hunger by empowering people with more education, health, and opportunities. Ironically, as they do, […]

Why Read a Romance Novel?

Personal Politics, Contemporary Romance Anthology

Caras Park, MissoulaOur little city got a little burst of excitement yesterday–almost as much fun as when Sir Paul visited in 2014. Instead of a giant musical show at the U of Montana football stadium, Bernie Sanders crowded into a smallish park in the center of downtown. (Picture is of the […]

Literacy Rates

Girl Reading

Creative Commons License–Photo by Patrick

I came from a family of readers. We moved often, and the movers often groaned about the number of boxes of books they carried from one residence to the other. As I grew older, I had a hard time understanding people who didn’t read. How on earth did they live without […]

Strong Women with Kick-Ass Attitudes: Bad-Girl Heroines

"Bad Girl" Photo

Creative Commons License — Photo by Friih Lecter

As I begin my search for an agent, I’ve noticed a trend…many agents are looking for manuscripts where the heroine is strong, maybe a little bad, and definitely has an attitude. They are looking for bad-girl heroines.

I have to admit, my heroines have been strong, but […]