Pursuit of Happiness

Some people see romance books as a waste of time.  Something meaningless and trivial. Usually these are people who will admit they’ve never read a romance, not once, not ever.  A lot of time, they think of romance in the terms of ripped bodices, clinches and Fabio.   

That’s fine~they can think what they want.  I enjoy reading romances and not just because I want to read about two people falling in love, getting married, having sex…. *G*  even though all of that is good.

But that’s not why I read it.  I love to read.  I always have.  I read in a lot of genres, almost all of them, when the mood suits me. The only genres I don’t really read are nonfiction, self help, westerns and erotica (yes, weird I know, I write erotic romance but straight erotica doesn’t appeal to me).  Oh, the literary stuff.  I’m sorry but literary fiction bores me to tears and it tends to be depressing as hell.

I write romances, and I read them, for one simple reason.   The HEA.  Happy Ever After.  Think about it.  How many things guarantee you a happy ending?  Movies?  Sometimes.  But sometimes, the hero dies in the movie.  Real life?  Not for all of us.  We never know what’s coming.  You don’t whether or not you’ll meet the love of your life and if you do, no person on earth knows whether you’ll be able to grow old together.  Maybe a happy ending for some has nothing to do with marriage and/or kids.  Maybe it’s the job.  Or the dream. Your version of a HEA may vary greatly from mine, but just because you’re after that HEA in life doesn’t mean you’re going to get it.

Things happen.  Life happens.  Accident happen.  You could be perfectly happy today and tragedy strikes tomorrow.  We simply never know.  Right now, I’m living my HEA.  I’m married to the man I’ve always loved, we have three beautiful kids, I’m doing what I always dreamed of and I’m paying off credit card bills.  What more could you want?

That’s easy.  A guarantee.  I want to know that I’ll grow old with my husband. I want to know that I’ll raise decent, hardworking honest kids that grow into people of value.  But I can’t have that.  For all I know, God could take one of them, all of them, me, tonight.  Anything could happen that will change my HEA so that guarantee is out of the question.  Well, we could wax spirituality and that leads to a whole different kind of HEA, but that’s not the point of the post.  ;o)  I ramble a lot.

The point of the post… oh yeah!  I want my HEA when I read.  Yes, I’ll read a good mystery.  I’ll read a bloody horror.  I love a good sci fi and I can’t tell you how much I’d like more books written by Mercedes Lackey featuring Diane Tregarde.  But none of those genre guarantee a HEA.  When I read, I get connected to the characters.  They may suffer.  That’s fine.  They may lose people.  Cool,  I’ll deal.  But I want to know at the end of it all, there will be a HEA. 

That means…a romance.  It’s the only genre where you guaranteed that the main characters will live thru it (in some shape or form) and they’ll be together.  Reading a romance leaves me feeling good.  It’s a distraction when my book isn’t cooperating.  When I was living with my folks, it was a distraction from their constant arguing.  When I was working a day job, it was a distraction from the stress there. 

I read them for that ‘feel good’ factor recently discussed at RTB.  If wanting that feel good factor is trivial,  hey, that’s fine by me.