Thursday, February 11, 2010

Why I Write Romance

--Adrienne Miller

About five thousand years ago, this couple died. We probably won’t ever know much about them, not who they were, or the specifics of their lives. Chances are, we won’t even know how they died. But none of that matters, does it? Everything I could ever want to know about them, I already do. 
Their bodies died. Their flesh fell away. But their love, the connection that bound them together, death couldn’t strip that away. Not even after five thousand years. 
Sometimes people ask me why I write romance. Most ask out of honest curiosity, but some don’t. Some ask without bothering to conceal their derision. Now, I have about a dozen pet theories about why romance novels get a bad rap, but I find my rants about the fear female-centric sexuality usually go better when I’m a pint or two into the evening, so I’ll spare you those...for now.  Besides, I think I’ll take Martha's advice. I’m done defending my genre. I’ve decided to celebrate it instead.
There are a lot of reasons that I write romance, the most important seems to be that I can’t manage to come up with a plot that doesn’t turn into a love story somewhere along the way. Love stories are the ones that pull me in. Besides, I truly believe they are important. These are the stories that highlight the redemptive nature of our lives. 
Love, romantic love in particular, is one of the few things that make us uniquely human. Everything dies. Everything suffers. Fear, rage, pain--these are our raw animal emotions. I’m not denying they are a huge part of all of us. But love makes them bearable. Love allows us focus as much on our god-like nature as on our animal. And that journey, with all its sacrifices, from self-centeredness to true connection, makes for some damn compelling reading as far as I’m concerned. 
Maybe I am a true hopeless romantic. I’m cool with that. I just hope that the archeologists five thousand years from now find enough evidence to prove that our capacity to love each other was just as strong as our capacity to hate.

10 comments:

Sophie Littlefield said...

awwwww, you may indeed be a hopeless romantic but that was the coolest picture ever. :)

Adrienne Miller said...

Isn't it, Sophie? I love it. I've been waiting patiently for a post to use it in. :-)

Tom Neely said...

thank god you got hitched to another hopeless romantic :^)

Mysti Lou said...

Though a million screenwriters have used violence as an easy out for the conflict that dramatic stories need, love is far more arresting. That terrifying vulnerability, the promise of deep happiness set right beside the threat of deepest heartache, man, *that's* conflict.

Thanks for a great post!

Martha Flynn said...

I am going to hug you when I next see you. Don't be surprised.

Sophie Littlefield said...

I'm surprised already. ;-)

Juliet Blackwell said...

LOVE that photo! Wow -- great post, great defense of romance. We all need all we can get!

Rachael Herron said...

a-frikken-men!

Gary Corby said...

I think I might recognise that picture. If I recall correctly it's from an Italian dig not far from Verona, a city you may have heard of.

Not that Verona existed then. But it's sort of cool.

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