I’m good – real good. Actually, I’m in love with love.
This past weekend. I completed the draft of my second romance novel.
It was another test of whether I really want to be a romance writer. Was my childhood dream real? Is this truly fulfilling?
I was on such a high when I was finished. It truly is an amazing entertaining delight when the plot goes the way it should and I have successfully created two character who fall head over heels in love with each other – but it is absolutely horrifying when the plot is successful but the two main characters don’t fall in love.
My first attempt failed. My characters would not fall in love! Can you imagine, I could not make them fall in love?
I learned so much! My biggest learning? True love stories are difficult to write. Comparatively action books are easy - you just find the criminal, shoot him and he is dead. End of story! In a love story there is an added second plot – an intense, complicated, unpredictable emotional plot with an unexpected ending.
I also learned that there is an important difference between romance and love.
Apparently, romance is the feeling of excitement and mystery. The genre of romantic fiction places its primary focus on the “falling in love’ between two people, and usually has an "emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending.” It’s chemistry.
Whereas a love story goes much deeper. It includes a strong feeling of warm personal attachment, deep affection, and a sense of responsibility displayed in an intricate plot of relationship development filled with intense, fragile, and complex emotions.
I’m fortunate. I can do both. Since my books are about people living in the Kuban Mennonite villages set in the wild frontiers of Russia in the early 1900’s, they contain both action and romance.
The stories are full of gun battles, attempted kidnappings, torture and kisses – based on the stories my father told me. What fun!
So – the answer? I’m having fun – at least I was having fun.
“Today I begin to understand what love must be, if it exists... When we are parted, we each feel the lack of the other half of ourselves. We are incomplete like a book in two volumes of which the first has been lost. That is what I imagine love to be: incompleteness in absence.” Edmond de Goncourt