My writerly roots are in romance. I started with Barbara Cartland novels. Anything with 18th century fashion on the cover. Cookie-cutter, yes, but my favorite parts were the clothes. Odd, since I hate dressing up.
TT: Yes, Kat, this is why the scene with the clothesman in Elementals is so long.
I read Louis L’Amour, who also manages a fair bit of romance in his westerns. I learned to admire manly, independent men with grit under their fingernails and dirt on their pants. Helps to know how to ride a horse and wrestle a bull, too.
Anne McCaffrey came next, a fantasy/sci-fi writer who always managed to sneak a little boy-meets-girl into her stories about fighting dragons and artificial intelligence. Danger might fall from the sky, but men and women will always find time to woo and marry.
Through it all, George MacDonald, C.S. Lewis’s “master,” instilled a love of fairy and natural wisdom that masquerades as magic in a cold, unfeeling world.
I like a little romance in my action/adventure/mystery novels. I like the energy a feisty exchange between genders can bring to a story. I especially like showing that love is more than chemistry, more than circumstances, and more than fate. Love is a choice, and, more often than not, love is a hard choice.
I hope you’ll forgive me if you find a little romance in my books. I try to keep it on the side.