Romance is dead

I write. Writing for me has always been second nature like breathing or eating for survival. I write across the genres because let’s face it, there are so many awesome things to write about! However, the one thing I write the most is romance. I think that genre may be my forte, or at least so I thought until recently.

I hadn’t read romance (the genre, I mean. I have read romantic literature. There is a difference) in a while other than YA. Since I am trying to get a romance published I thought that I probably should research the genre again. It’s been a horrifying experience. After reading some authors I am not familiar with (and being utterly disappointed by what they view as romance), I decided to try authors I have read (and loved) in the YA realm who also write adult romance. So far I am crushed and to the point of vowing to only read YA romance from now on.

I must be getting really old. When did the word f*** became a romantic word? If the hottest guy on this earth came to me and said, “I just want to f*** you all night” I would run as fast as I could in the other direction. I cannot think of a situation when using those words fit in with love and romance. To me the word has connotations with rape and macho attitudes toward women not with romantic love. However, it seems like that’s common place in romantic lit right now.

I am currently reading a romance written by one of my favorite YA authors (who I will not name at this time since I still love her YA work). I was so excited because her YA romances are truly romantic and sexy (in a good way). So imagine my shock when I get to the scene where the two MCs (who have been tiptoeing around each other for chapters) finally succumbed to their desire for each other and the first thing the guy says as he slams her against the wall is “I have imagined f***ing you in this office so many times”. Is it just me who thinks that is so freaking aggressive it borders on violent? Is it just me or there is this new (disturbing) trend to associate sexy romance to masochism and violence? Are we as a society, especially as females, going backwards and accepting the popularization of violent sex as something we women crave for? Am I alone in thinking that (however unrealistic) romantic love is passionate but NOT violent? That a sexy love scene does not translate into a play-by-play (often using very vulgar idiomatic terms for body parts)? That feeling sexy does not translate into causing violent urges in your partner? Should I just give up on the idea of romance altogether and start writing erotica instead (which would require me to get a long term prescription for anti-acids)?

So, should I stop writing romance? I am obviously not writing romance the way other authors are writing it nowadays so I may be obsolete for all I know. Is there a place for my kind of romance in today’s market or should I just resign myself to the fact that I may have to tread waters I so much prefer not to if I want to sell my novels?

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