A mixture of romance, work and life left to simmer on a weak flame.

"Love - a wildly misunderstood although highly desirable malfunction of the heart which weakens the brain, causes eyes to sparkle, cheeks to glow, blood pressure to rise and the lips to pucker."--Unknown.

"I learned long ago that being Lewis Carrol was infinitely more exciting than being Alice."--Joyce Carol Oates

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Friday, May 26, 2006

STOP! And slowly...

back away from the romance.

Here comes another dust-up, maybe?

The Ja(y)nes covered a story about the new line of Aphrodisia and how their books are going to be shelved with romance, even though they do not necessarily carry an HEA. I read the post but didn't keep up, thanks to Cindy for the heads up that the comments got sorta heated.

Here is Dear Author's original post about False Advertising which was picked up from Angie W

And their new post responding to Aphrodisia's author's comments...Misinformation or Affirmation - You be the judge

My thoughts (OPINION):

A romance book has a Happily Ever After ending. That means the hero and heroine of the book hook up and live happily ever after. That is romance. There is no need to be embarrassed or confused about this fact, for that is what it is, a fact of the genre.

Now, there is NOTHING wrong with a book not having an HEA. As a matter of fact, there are LOTS of good books where the hero and heroine don't end up loving each other. However, that book IS NOT A ROMANCE! It is chick lit or just fiction in general.

When did authors and publishers start not wanting their books to be shelved in general fiction? Did they finally realize that there is a market for romance and want a piece of the pie? In my opinion, this is the time to guard our boundaries more than ever.

Erotica has been around as long as romance. It is not something new, it simply has a fresh face. A book line that features a lot of sex but always ends with HEAs are romance. Whether traditionalist or not, they are romance and deserve recognition by organizations such as RITA.

However, a book line that makes the HEA optional IS NOT A ROMANCE LINE. You are erotica, you are general fiction, you are NOT ROMANCE. That isn't a bad thing people, really, it's not.

In closing, Angie has a snippet of the original interview with Sylvia Day and Audrey LeFehr. Here is Audrey's response when Aphrodisia is questioned about challenging the boundaries of what constitutes a romance:

"Aphrodisia would not be considered romance by many traditionalists. It is categorized as “Erotic Romance” for a simple, practical reason—we want it to be sold to the romance buyer and go into or near the romance section of the bookstore. If it had “Erotica” on the spine, it would go into general fiction or an erotica section if the store has one, and our readers (who are primarily romance readers who want something hotter) would not be able to find our books easily. Other than that, Aphrodisia does not have to conform to the usual parameters of romance."

AH-HA! See, they know what they are doing...

*Edited to add...
I would like to say that even though it appears that some (many?) of the Aphrodisia authors have HEAs in their books, there are some who do not. With so many books to buy, why would I bother with a line that requires me to research a book before buying, read the ending in the store or run the risk of buying a "romance" without an HEA? Guess what, I won't.*


3 touched me

Blogger Wendy pondered...

The irony here is the for YEARS nobody wanted to be associated with the romance genre. Nothing was worse than being lumped in with those romance writing hacks and their overweight, bon bon eating, bored housewife fans.

Now all of the sudden everybody and their dead grandmother wants to market/cater to romance readers. Maybe they finally saw the money train rolling into the station....

5/26/2006 03:32:00 PM  
Blogger Dylan pondered...

This is funny because before no one wanted to be anywhere near linked to romance and now everyone wants a piece of the pie...romance is where it's at, it's got a huge fanbase and now everyone's trying to cash in on that....what a bunch of turds.

Don't mess with my HEA's, because then I become grouchy and a grouchy Dylan is not a nice one.

5/26/2006 08:07:00 PM  
Blogger Fickle Fiona pondered...

At least I can understand the outsiders looking in and wanting to join the party. I don't know about Kensington's history, but it does bother me to think that a traditional romance line would play this kind of Russian Roulette with the genre.


5/27/2006 07:19:00 AM  

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