Read a Romance

Isn’t that seriously the best thing ever? Celebrating romance books? Oh, sure, you’ve thought “Yeah, it’s cool. I’ll pick up one or two books, sign up for some prizes, maybe comment on a post.” But really think about what this month is about. (I’m going to give you some time here – picture me humming the Jeopardy theme song)

So did you come to the same conclusion I did?

Here’s what I came up with….(drum roll)

YOU (and ME) are helping to celebrate the concept of happiness. Yeah. This month is about creating happiness. Isn’t that the coolest? We’re not making people aware of bad things – yes, I know that the ribbon awareness campaigns are important – but we’re making people aware that there exist people who write stories with one true goal in mind: to make other people happy. To make them remember what it feels like to triumph over all the bad crap in life and have love dancing on the top of the heap victorious and gleeful. Yes, in the world of ME, ME, ME, of missiles knocking planes out of the sky, of children being gunned down in their beds, there exists an object that celebrates something totally self-sacrificing, beautiful as a perfect sunset and smooshy like a cute little kitten’s face.

In essence, we’re celebrating the bringing of happiness.

At the end of a romance book, love wins. Every single time. Not cancer or the bitchy girl who looks disdainfully down her perfect nose. Evil doesn’t triumph here and there’s no lukewarm maybe about a happy ever after. Death has no grip here. It’s all about good, wonderful love winning. Every time you read a romance book, you let a little more happiness into your life.

See? Very, very cool.

And that’s why I write romance. Because I need that. Heck, the world needs love to win, am I right? No one slinks away from a romance book the same way she does after watching the evening news with a weighty sigh and a heavy heart. And isn’t that grand?

I began writing for fun. It was a way to pass the time while my son snoozed in his crib. At some point I set down my sweeping Regency books and pecked away for the sheer joy of it. I didn’t mean to turn it into a career. Writing was merely something that made me happy…excited…giddy over the hero saving the pompous, stout vicar’s wife from choking on a biscuit. My journey into writing was like a seed of happiness that once planted yielded a tender shoot stretching up to something I could have never dreamed of.

And so every story I write begins as a happy…

And hopefully in the hands of my readers it ends the same way.

1 – Describe the most daring, adventurous or inspiring thing you ever did.

Honestly, it’s quitting my job to write full time. At the time I hadn’t sold my first book, but my part-time job was about to go full-time and with a young family and my husband’s business still new, I knew I’d not be able to write. So I quit. And it was scary. As a first born child, I’m cautious. This felt really brave.

2 – Tell us about your journey to becoming a writer. (How did you decide to get started? Did you always know or was there a specific moment when you knew?)

 I wasn’t one of those writers who knew at childbirth he or she was destined to write. I liked writing fine and was good enough at it, but it never crossed my mind until I decided to play around with a story while my kiddos slept. I wrote an entire 95,000 word book for fun. But it hooked me. After I finished, I knew I wanted to write another book. That’s how I became a writer.

3 – Tell us about The (or A) Book That Changed Your Life. (Why?)

The book that changed my life came along in the third grade. I don’t remember the name, only that the two characters wore dungarees (no clue what that was back then) and found the treasure hidden in a secret panel in the fireplace. I can remember thinking “This is great. I like this.” And so the next time my dad went to the library, I tagged along. I found Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew and Island of the Blue Dolphin. I’m pretty sure I left no book in the Webster Parish library untouched. Whatever that books was, it changed my life.

As far as recommendations go, I’m going to give you the greatest one ever – the entire Ruby-Slippered Sisterhood. On the August 6th post celebrating Read a Romance Month, you’ll find lots of fun information on the fabulous sisterhood and there will be a fantastic giveaway from me. Click here to hop over.

 

headshot - TalleyAfter finaling in RWA’s prestigious Golden Heart in Regency romance, Liz found a home writing sassy contemporary romance. Her first book starred a spinster librarian – Vegas Two Step – and debuted in June 2010. Since that time, Liz has published twelve more books with Harlequin Superromance. Her stories are set in the South where the tea is sweet, the summers are hot and the men are hotter. Liz lives in North Louisiana with her childhood sweetheart, two handsome children and assorted pets. Liz loves doing laundry, paying bills and creating masterful dinners for her family. She also lies in her bio to make herself look like the perfect wife. What she really likes is pretty shoes, lemondrop martinis, fishing off the pier and ignoring the sink full of dirty dishes. You can visit Liz at www.liztalleybooks.com to learn more about the lies she tells herself…and her upcoming books.

Special thank you to the fabulous, creative Darynda Jones for recommending my books in her post. I’m blessed to have friends and readers like Darynda. She’s truly the most generous person I know.