Today we're talking about the romance genre. Yes. Romance. Here on the lab! I'd like to welcome Liz Borino, author of Expectations, a novel from LazyDay Publishing. She has some really interesting insights about romance that I think you should read.
The Romance Genre
Contemporary Romance. Romance, Lazy Day? Really? This was my initial (internal) reaction when I asked my newly acquired publisher how they’d classify my debut novel, Expectations. I envisioned the category of literary fiction or just mainstream fiction in the vein of Michael Cunningham. When I thought of romance books, I thought of predictable plotlines and shirtless men on the covers. Don’t get me wrong, I like shirtless men with ripped abs and a happy trail as much as the next straight woman… What was I talking about? My books and the romance genre, right. I decided to do some research before I stomped my bratty writer’s foot and calmly discussed changing the genre with Lazy Day.
The Romance Writers of America define the overall romance genre as having two main elements, “A Central Love Story: The main plot centers around two individuals falling in love and struggling to make the relationship work. A writer can include as many subplots as he/she wants as long as the love story is the main focus of the novel. An Emotionally-Satisfying and Optimistic Ending: In a romance, the lovers who risk and struggle for each other and their relationship are rewarded with emotional justice and unconditional love.”
Well…yeah. Expectations and its sequel, What Money Can’t Buy, actually focus on two couples, Chris and Aiden and Matt and Carley. To say their relationships are put through trials would be an understatement. As for the optimistic ending, I believe that’s important you have as many dark themes as I do.
The Romance Genre allows for as many storylines as an author’s creativity can come up with. Looking around the RWA website, I became more and more impressed with not only the quality and variety of writing from the other authors within the genre, but the community. So now, with the impending release of What Money Can’t Buy, I’m proud to call myself a Contemporary Romance author. Now where’s my man with a six pack?
Hah! I love it, Liz! Thank you so much. I think that romance has such a stigma attached to it that many writers aren't willing to look past that stigma to see the possibilities behind that genre. I'm excited about your new book, Money Can't Buy Can't Buy!
Liz is with LazyDay, a small publisher I have talked about over on The Innocent Flower.
So, Liz, how did you get signed with a small publisher?
I got tired of querying and getting form rejections, so I began exploring other options. As much as I liked the idea of the control of self-publishing, I felt Expectations should be put out by a publisher to give it more 'cred'. A few weeks after I made that decision, Lazy Day began following me on Twitter. From there, I queried and two months later was accepted.
Since you've been with a small publisher, do you have plans to move on eventually? Have you felt the need for an agent?
No, to the agent. If I made a move it would be to self publish. There wouldn't be so much uncertainty. Though, Lazy Day is wonderfully supportive and I don't plan to leave anytime soon, unless they get weary of my neurosis!
That's fantastic! I love my small publisher, too. It's no wonder many authors are going that route these days. Can you tell us a little bit about your first book with them?
Expectations blurb: Ourselves and our familial obligations. The struggle is personified by Chris and Matt Taylor, identical twins, who are trying to win their overbearing father’s approval and acquire their trust funds. Love, money, and desire collide as Matt and Chris decide what’s really important to them.
Can you tell us what's for you on the horizon after your second book release?
Oh wow, um, well I've already started the third book, and I'm building my PR business to help other authors and different kinds of artists promote themselves
That's great! Do you plan to keep writing in the romance genre?
Thanks! It seems my stories tend to have romantic themes to them and I intend to keep this series going as long as makes sense.
It does! Thank you so much, Liz, for guest blogging with us today. You can find Liz on her Author Site and on Facebook. Her second novel, What Money Can't Buy, will be up on Amazon soon for purchase. You can find Expecations here.
To WIN a free eBook of Expectations by Liz Borino, simply leave a comment here! We'll choose a winner and let them know by email that they've won. Thanks, everyone!