The Truth Is You Are Not The Only Person Concerned About WHO'S AFRAID OF HAPPY ENDING TRUE STORY

The Truth Is You Are Not The Only Person Concerned About WHO'S AFRAID OF HAPPY ENDING TRUE STORY

The Truth Is You Are Not The Only Person Concerned About WHO'S AFRAID OF HAPPY ENDING TRUE STORY

true story

[Music] once upon a time there were three women and they worked for romance [Music] what's a woman's fantasy I mean ideally from the time we're young we're thinking about meeting mr. right settling down having a family and just having you know happy relationship this is across the board you know I think you're Chinese Indian black white everybody wants the same kinds of things you make me dizzy when you take me on the floor 

everybody I think believes and love to some extent or another some people kind of deny that they do but that's probably because they've had bad experiences but I believe in true love so I think along with that comes the ability to write about it [Music] I love taking these people and putting them through a lot of conflict and torturing them endlessly and then giving them that present of that their lives may not always be easy but as long as they're together they can get through it anticipation burning rioting I never thought I'd ever feel this 

way again I thought he's moving to sound [Music] every year romance fiction generates over 1 billion dollars in sales [Music] so besides brooding heroes and feisty heroines what are the ingredients that make up this winning recipe [Music] a romance novel is a work of fiction that tells the story of the courtship and betrothal of one or more heroines and ends triumphantly ie after all the challenges and struggles the couple triumphs and achieves the 

great reward which is the sort of bond that has a good chance of lasting but they are underneath delivering a message of the woman who wins on the page romance novels all seem to have the same set up girl meets boy they drive each other crazy girl gets boy and they live happily ever after but read between the lines these relationship stories are saying more than we might think I think their quest stories I really do think they're almost the opposite Cinderella where the Prince goes out and gets what he wants and Cinderella is his 

reward particularly in what's called women's section much of which is romance it's a woman struggling on her journey and what happens is that she matures as she becomes strong and she deserves the relationship she gets at the end let it be her desires for the hero that are thwarted somehow let it be her concerns her point of view her thoughts her quest and if you enact a courtship in that narrative you're gonna end up with a romance novel you see Romeo and Juliet system to romance for sure and what's more I think it should have had a happy ending Gone with the Wind isn't around you know I mean if it doesn't have the 

triumphant ending as far as I'm concerned it is sort of like a fantasy quest you know where they have to defeat the great evil and capture the sword and save the world if they don't it's not much fun [Music] we can help your marriage better from mars women are from venus deer read page 62 pinned looking for love [Music] languid deliciously hot hot a steamy we had moved up here right after I graduated high school and I was kind of separated from all my friends and you know the town that I was familiar with so I was pretty depressed and I was just kind of walking around and you know I can't walk past the bookstore not go in but 

I'd basically just skipped out of the class I'm supposed to be going too and I went into the bookstore and I was just kind of rummaging around looking for something to kind of cheer me up I guess and found the book these two figures coming up out of the water basically and she was kind of in a soaked chemise and he had on not a stitch but you can really see him but just the image of it I was like whoa because I'd never even picked up a historical romance before and I flipped it over and I read the back cover in the back however the 

story really intrigued me I felt up to that point like my feelings were very deadened and that was something that kind of perked me up and caught my interest and you know kind of made me feel something in the world of romance fiction the cover has always generated hot debate but whether you love them or leave them they'll always be front and center editors 

things to think think that the cover is important because they know that they want people to be attracted to the book and to pick it up and to and to look at the text and they want a signal the kind of book it is so chicklet books have a certain kind of cover they're cartoony and historical z' have another kind of cover they're sort of soft focusing not a lot of clothes and evidence the words inside are so much more important than the covers covers are enormously important just because they you know they sell the book because honestly consumer has maybe five seconds and that might be optimistic to make a decision on 

whether she's gonna take the book off the shelf and actually then flip it over me the copy if the author is a superstar then it's the author name of course that's important but for me if you're kind of starting out it's the cover and then it's your title and then you've got to make sure that the copy is going to entice the reader publishers put a lot of time and effort into turning out covers they help will grab the attention of the book buyer some are hits and 

some are misses but it's all about trial and error there was a period where all covers had flowers on them because everybody was waking up to the fact that women read them and they weren't embarrassed to be reading it on the subway anymore but everybody had flowers and after a while that wasn't telling the consumer enough about the book so I think I mean the process we go through with covers now is very author specific it's about the plot in the book it's about the market we're trying to reach and it's not just the image it's the feeling of the cover and it's very hard particularly when a writer is still establishing her 

market in her voice to package well it's a lot of times it's hit or miss a lot of times writers will go through lots of different cover looks before they get one that clicks in terms of how people can break out of the mid list often it's a cover that will do it so they're writing brilliant brilliant prose and they're getting dreary covers would like you know some sad King IV crawling up the left side and the readers look at it and put it down and that's unfortunate but 

you get an you know innovative different cover and suddenly a book is flying off the shelves Catherine Smith is a Regency historical author with Avon books set in early 19th century England region see historical czar bursting with rakish rogues longing ladies and plenty of successful authors catherine falls somewhere in the mid lists that's why she's making a shift to another sub-genre there are a lot of Regency romance authors out there and there are wonderful wonderful authors but I was starting to feel like little fish big pond and it's so 

difficult to be fresh when you're writing in a sub-genre that is that huge and that loved so the the jump to paranormal just gives me a whole new chance to try something new and really establish myself as somebody different and a different voice and not just another Regency historical author [Music] [Music] she hasn't really hit the bestseller list yet and I'm hoping that with the paranormal element in her historicals that she will hit that lust that's our goal I've been trying to think about how I want Catherine's book to be different from what's already on the shelves it was just an image that I saw on the internet that really caught my eye and our art director basically loved the idea and took it a couple of steps further into 

making it really really stand out here's the cover oh my god it's so beautiful I love that font I love the monotone and then I love how her lips it's so flat but then her lips have some shine to them she has a great expression I just love his lips on her neck yeah you don't know if he's just trying to kiss her there or if he's gonna sing something in she's had a great fan base from writing historical and she didn't want to turn him away by you know writing contemporary paranormals I think it was great that she decided to marry the two themes and 

you know what this whole business is about taking rest you have to you have to take that step at some point it's very important that I get that book into somebody's hands and that they look at it make the decision to buy it based on the fact that it looks sexy and it looks interesting but it fits all their criteria as a reader one sneak peek at the romance section will tell you sex sells this is a joke in the office we have one cover that has this cowboy on the cover leaning up against a car and he is the sexiest guy anybody's ever seen and we all 

talked about it and then we found out he was a computer-generated image it wasn't even a real guy but what is it about those hunky men on the covers that readers love well they sure love them better than covers showing women it depends if you're a chest admirer but admirer I go through the chest you know the hunky chest on covers of romance novels truly do help sell them butts are good too alura's cave knows a thing or two about selling a fantasy the print-on-demand publishing house is known for its erotic romance something they like to 

call romantic ax what began as a modest online business in 2000 now sells over 80 thousand books a month around the globe there was a cover last year I think it was um happy birthday baby was the book and it's a man's torso big chest and he's holding a birthday cake strategically placed but this book was on display and I used was standing to the side watching people and they would go up and Stroke the guy's chest on the cover so whatever it is in us women we literally just know those big pecs the popularity of erotica sparked by 

Laura's cave seems to be catching as powerhouse publishers have begun launching their own erotic fiction imprints Harlequin Enterprises is among them they're calling their new line spice and Kayla Perrin is one of the first authors on board Kayla hopes her shift into erotica will be her way out of the african-american niche market and into the mainstream and I really hate to say it but I think as a black writer it's just much more struggle for me because yes my books might feature characters of color they're not exclusively for characters of color it's one of the reasons that in my book getting even I decided to have two black 

heroines as well as a white heroine and interestingly enough you know I had one publisher say why is there a white girl in this book you would think that in this day and age you just wouldn't get those kind of comments I think they're absolutely absurd and the one great thing about Harlequin and maybe being because they're in Toronto and it's a much more multicultural City than some of the US cities they said this is great we love this this is reality 

[Music] - oh so much you got me [Music] I can't resist your strong and gentle [Music] it was a new prospect when my agent submitted to Parliament they said we love this book we love the tone it's got a good sexy tone and maybe Kayla would be comfortable upping that and we could put it in the launch for our spice as I said I'm not stupid Harlequin just fabulous launches I want to grow my career so I said yes to doing that she is really a very unique voice and that she is able to capture not only the african-american voice and 

experience but in such a way that it appeals to non African American readers which i think is maybe a bit of a problem with other FM writers that they tend to be popular within the african-american community and have difficulty breaking out into other avenues another thing we try to do because your characters are black and you have characters who are white we did sort of I guess exactly so it could be any of the care really squeezing that peach we 

didn't want to direct it specifically one way to an african-american market and a you know maybe exclude the Caucasian market or so that was deliberate it was deliberate with our packaging we're doing a lot of really sophisticated more subdued covers we don't want women to be embarrassed buying these books in the stores we don't want women to be embarrassed reading them in public we don't want women to be embarrassed leaving them on their coffee tables for you know their five-year-old to see it'll be very clean very contemporary and a little bit more sophisticated than the average erotic fiction novel I think 

if I stand out as the black writer who Wow can really write these great stories in a mainstream way I could probably get a lot more push from Harlequin exciting life I'm the only one but I'll be the one that they push [Music] even though they are you know they have the characters the major characters are blasting practically not all in black I'm addicted to Nora a good story written about two people falling in love [Music] when most of us think of romance novels Harlequin comes to mind but the romance novel might be a lot older than 

you think it's believed that Samuel Richardson wrote and published the first one in England in 1740 it was called Pamela it was a sensation in the modern sense there was a merchandise there were translations unauthorized sequence stage adaptations a series of oil paintings made of the heroine and everybody had to read it it was incendiary because a lady's maid resists her masters attempts to seduce her and he marries her so it's the servants getting uppity then about 70 years later along came a book that would inspire future generations of 

romance writers Pride and Prejudice is the best romance novel ever written hands down Austin managed in that work to perfectly blend the form and the content and so what you have is an incredibly witty book sentence to sentence it just glows on the page and you have funny secondary characters and a hero to die for and a really smart heroine and a really great set of conflicts fast forward about a hundred and fifty years when Harlequin along with several other publishers created a publishing phenomenon and the romance industry as we 

know it Jane Austen put back on earth would read Harlequins there's no question in my mind that she would do this it would be the competition partly in the beginning the hero was probably ten years older than the heroine and the richest man in the free world she was probably orphaned and raised by an aunt and of course a virgin well that has changed because we were American women and we're like no that's not my fantasy my fantasy is more like were partners and I you know I have a career he doesn't have to be the patriarch I don't I don't want a daddy but it seems that no matter what era romance fiction will always 

have its fair share of critics I did have a woman come up to me at a bookstore once I was signing stock this is just a regular woman and and she said oh oh you're Noah Roberts you write that smut I was at an autographing one time and somebody came up and picked up my book and said oh you write those kind of books and my immediate reply was what no 

pictures I said I do not write sput and that is incredibly rude what's wrong with you romance fiction has been stamped with many labels frothy bodice ripper hmm twit late' supermarket trash porn for women it seems that popularity may not always translate into acceptance especially when it comes to matters of sex we don't or we being in a cultural way there are uneasy with the idea of women becoming aroused or reading a story that might arouse them 

what the culture tends to do is latch on to the sex in the books and ignore all the rest that goes with it which is generally a relationship you know the women in these stories have families and problems and all the other stuff that goes along with life and like many things in our culture things that are of most interest to women can be denigrated in a lot of ways a friend of mine when I asked her what she was reading she said oh it's just trashed my sons in grade 12 and his English teacher when I mentioned that I read romance she said oh well 

huh I guess you don't like to have to deal with reality and it turned out it was Nora Roberts new bestseller [Applause] my body's moving to sound the rhythm of the beads they can be naughty or they can be nice but no romance novel is complete without them I really like clause ability can't happen too soon it can't happen too fast not too much talking but I did a book called secrets of the night where essentially the heroine kidnaps the hero while she 

rescues him because he's lying drugged in a ditch but she's looking for somebody to father a child on her and she propositions him for stud duty so when they actually have sex it's this very strange unnatural situation of two strangers that was a totally different kind of scene it has to be after you've read 500 novels it's like okay here we go you know stars bursting fireworks but you know when there's when there's a surprise that that gets my attention many of our stories it's the man and the woman in the man or it's the vampire in the woman or it's the werewolf in the man it doesn't matter if it's a threesome it still can be a very 

romantic relationship love scenes are as varied as the thousands of romance authors writing them but while some keep sex behind closed doors others leave the door wide open sex is a natural part of any loving relationship and as far as romance novels go it's actually a plot point Catherine Smith has a reputation for being a sexy emotional writer with bite a higher number being seven years old and seeing Frank Langella played Dracula and falling instantly 

in love with this creature and I thought there's nothing more tortured than a vampire hero and I I do so love to torture my heroes Catherine's novel be mine tonight is set in late Victorian England the story follows a vampire who falls in love with a terminally ill woman while searching for the Holy Grail I think what I bring to the paranormal romance genre is a 

deep abiding love for mixing the disturbing and the aroused a if that even makes any kind of sense and I think that's what I like to do I think I'd like to try and play around with people's comfortable areas and add some things that people mm even readers might not be so entirely comfortable with but they like the characters so much that they'll go along with it anyway 

[Music] everything about her wept life and hope and a sense of desperation that called to him she looks so fragile he longed to protect her so delicate he wanted to shelter her and so damn tempting that he wanted to sink his fangs into her just to know the bittersweet tang of life once more writing those all-important love scenes is a big part of a romance writers job but contrary to popular belief there is no how-to manual on writing them and most writers 

agree that the key to a good love scene is emotion I get comments why don't you write more sex in your books well to me this the love scene and it's not a sexy it is a love scene should come when you have gotten to the point where this commitment means something it's not just a physical exercise you know the motion the technical is pretty much the same for 

everybody slot a tabby pretty much the same so it really is about what these two people feel for each other what how they change each other what they're feeling inside the emotion of the physicality because the whole point of the book is to reach a point where you dedicated to each other for life and the physical part has to be part of that dedication Kelly Boyce is 

working on a romance set in early 19th century England desire and brimstone is about a young woman forced to marry a man with a questionable past I think when you are writing the love scene it's very easy to get into the head with characters because you've been in their heads for the whole stories so you know what their emotions are you know what they're 

feeling so to get into their head for the love scene you're probably already there compassionate Birds a blue flame so right undying brilliance and hots never rain so excited about the story and the whole thing is just like following so naturally that it's it's just like coming out and I'm not really doing a whole lot of editing as I'm writing yeah I think a lot of people who know me and who have known me for a long time find out that I write romance their first impressionist you I'm not cynical I'm very sarcastic I kind of have a dry sense of 

humor and I probably don't outwardly have a romantic bone in my body but I again I don't think it's romance I'm writing I think it's relationships [Music] isabell allowed herself to be gathered into his arms and pulled against him his strong chest provided a warm and familiar welcoming a hint of sandalwood drifted around her mixed with a musky male sent all his 

own she remembered it from before remembered what it represented a safe haven how odd to find such comfort in the embrace of the one man the tone feared above all the one they called the devil cheek well romance fiction has been getting steamier in recent years it's forever faithful to the happy ending erotica on the other hand delivers sizzling sex scenes but 

no guarantee of a happily ever after it's definitely the battle between me the romance writer and me the erotic writer it's just I've never written as explicitly before and I think it could jar some of my readers I'm worried that my readers are gonna say whoa Kayla this is too much I don't want to lose any readers but by the same token I often will ask my readers do you guys really like it hotter cuz I keep hearing that hotter hotter hotter and they'll always tell me make it hotter Kayla Perrins book getting even is set in modern day Atlanta it follows the 

stories of three women who plot revenge on the men who wronged them and I always pondered will this be a good spice book and it was one of the things I somewhat wrestled with because I didn't want to compromise story but personally I'm really happy with it with how it turned out because I think there's great sex and great story absolutely well we're thrilled I think women from all walks of life and all sort of social strata can relate to I think everyone has been through heartache before yeah everyone has been in a bad relationship 

herb is jilted by a guy yeah and I mean who can't relate to the theme of wanting to get even with something exactly it's something that you just know when you read it I mean people can write sex scenes and have it not do a single thing for you it doesn't get you know the blood flowing someone else can write it in such a way that it really it really hits the mark and it's really all in the execution it's not just the words put down on paper it's how they're 

written I mean it's one thing to write romance it's another thing to push the envelope and say you know this is as real as it can get in the bedroom they say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach but if you ask me that's a load of bull hands down that goldline path travels through his libido I should know right now and practically dying of embarrassment as 

I sit in a North Atlanta restaurant with the man of my dreams Adam Hart I'm trying to look nonchalant beside him in our booth sipping a margarita through a straw while Adam has his hand between my legs [Music] I like smart-mouth heroines oh look at me I'm so buff macho type guy I like that every year aspiring and published romance writers along with publishers agents and editors from across North America and around the world gather for a conference about all things romance organized by the Romance Writers of America it features wall-to-

wall book signings famous author appearances rowdy workshops fabulous parties and high-powered pitching with 9,500 members the rwa is the only major Romance Writers Association in North America but less than one-fifth of its members are actually published the rest like Kelly boys just have a dream oh yeah I'm starving for this this is just pretty much my sole goal in life is to be published and to make a living off of it that's pretty much what gets me out of bed in the morning [Music] Kelly is about to take her first stab at 

pitching her manuscript but will it make a mark with Avon editor Kelly harms there's a huge competition for you know only a few spots but that's nothing I can control the only thing I can control is what I put out there and that's pretty much where my focus has known it's a single title historical that takes place in 1822 England okay and I'll just kind of read you the 

premise here so I don't screw it up if I try to memorize cynical Devlin Kane the Duke of avantgarde needs an heiress the last beautiful widow Isabel Camden spent the last eight years in a loveless marriage works because you want story or a to find herself consigned to another loveless Union to save her son so you have a widow I do what'd she tell you - Julie I tell you that I always can play you in there but no that's okay but um but first thing I always send her or any of my pros back to do is to try to envision the book with a virgin ever since historical romances took off in the 1970s the virgin has reigned supreme and it doesn't look like she's giving up her crown just yet the urja and a little heroine which you 

know just leaves off the shelf sometimes right we don't know why but people just love to read about that and you've told me the setup for a very solid sandala there is nothing that ties us into the next book it all comes down to the writing which I would love to see great so send it to me and it's great to meet you too I mean thank you bye bye there's nervous at first because I can't memorize things so I was reading it off the paper which felt a little stupid but at least it came out coherent the book is exactly what an Avon romance should be except it's missing that sparkle she doesn't like widows very much and I have yet to hear how that 

sparkle is gonna come through overall it was a really good experience did she come to me with a hook that I couldn't stop thinking about and I just to read no romance writers may write about love [Music] but this business is not for the faint of heart there are very few writers who can support themselves romance writers are one of the few places where a lot of the writers can't support themselves with their writing this is not an easy occupation you have to really want this the temptation is to say I'm just gonna sit in my room and I'm gonna write wonderful books that everyone will recognize them the truth is that doesn't happen it 

doesn't matter whether you're reading literary fiction you're any mysteries or anything else it's not going to happen a success in this extremely competitive business is no fluke for writers that have made it big their recipe is a potent mix of talent and savvy self-promotion it's not just about writing a good book it's about selling it I think I'm very good at what I do because I've got where I am quite quickly by paying attention to the business side how did I 

get to the top one reader at a time one book at a time by knowing my audience by giving them the stories I know they want to read I think I went from four figure advances to a six-figure advance and I turned around I went clear everything you know it's a brand-new life I paid off all my bills and knew I was you know not gonna be on the street a new romance author can expect to make less than a mortgage payment for her first book midlist authors might be able to afford a used car provided that they write more than one book a year a top-

selling romance author and pay off her house buy a brand new car and finally take that Caribbean cruise it's no cliche making it big takes hard work Catherine Smith is taking a page from the bestsellers she's stepping away from her computer and onto the front lines of promotion the bookstore she's meeting with sue Grimshaw romance buyer for Borders group a large bookstore chain with hundreds of stores around the world being a Canadian and an L living in Connecticut it's been career-wise it's been a it's been a great move but 

there's also been a little bit of adjusting to do because the fiction market is just so much bigger down here and from a business perspective I really think I need to work on self-promotion and and getting myself out there and making and make myself known to more readers and more book sellers now you're saying you're going into paranormal earnest on the shelf and see there what can I say it fits in there yeah you know great cover every Monday when I come into the office I go through my whole day is spent going through our 

sales and seeing what sold the previous week I break it down not only by book but also by sub-genre to see what's continuing to trend well see what selling differently the paranormal category has just been on the increase over the last two years we've seen 30 percent increases each year so it's it's really been growing and you know there's really no end in 

sight either I think authors have been very good at keeping their stories diversified so there's always something new even though we have another new paranormal book it's it's something different I also look and some of the other fiction genres to see what they're doing well paranormal obviously has a crossover audience and that's one of the reasons why it is selling so well because we are attracting another reader from the sci-fi market some of the things some of the authors do are the bookmarks and Kresley Cole has a new book that's out actually this month called hunger like no other and she sent out bookmarks to our 

romance expert stores and had them placed within the section and that is something else that the readers enjoy picking up and have stores that are romance experts yes we do this list of stores available to authors absolutely so this is something I should be doing yeah yeah yeah I'm certainly not anywhere near the ranks of Saint Nora Roberts or Lisa cleitus or Stephanie Lauren's I have a way to go before that happens but you would be placed within this section as well so I think that's in terms of real estate this is what the Hanson where you want to be exactly this is where you want to be everyone's reading number one New York Times 

bestselling author Nora Roberts well almost everyone someone forgot to write them if there's one name synonymous with success in romance it's Nora Roberts her career is what romance authors like Catherine Smith Kayla Perrin and Kelly boys dream of I like to work someone said if you had a fantasy that you could go anywhere where would you like to be I don't say at home I'd rather be home than anywhere Nora Roberts has sold over 295 million 

books worldwide under her own name and under her pen name JD robb my publisher called me once Nora and her New York accent Nora yeah I need a hobby I'm gonna be I want a hobby ooh I want to write so my age and said you know pseudonym and I said I don't want one because I don't want somebody else's name on my book I want I'm proud of it I want my name on it two years we've added this back and forth and then she said to me my clever agent nor there's Pepsi there's Diet Pepsi and there's caffeine-free Pepsi Oh light goes off it's 

marketing and I could be two popular brands since 1999 every book published under the Noor Roberts name has been a New York Times bestseller you certainly need a very energetic supportive interested publisher you need booksellers who get excited about your work you hope for a good cover but you can't control any of that the only thing you can control is writer is what's between the pages if you line up all the Nora Roberts books sold 

they would stretch across the United States from Los Angeles to New York City ten times [Music] it can be really hard someone once said to me to please all your masters it's easier in that sense if you're writing from one publishing house but you know on the other hand no one has stepped up and said hey Lee kala here's like a super fabulous contract that I can feel safe writing one book for one publishing house for one year or whatever and not worry that if that tanks I'm gonna lose my house Kayla Perrin has landed a three-book deal with 

Harlequins spice line but she's hoping for a more long-term commitment she's anxious to talk to her LA based agent Helen bright wiser about her future with Harlequin [Music] hello Helen Parra I just got the flowers thank you so much you're welcome I don't very spring-like oh yes very spring-like I love your great a new deal yes it's it's fabulous thank you such a nice do you think that Harlequin can reach that audience that's beyond the chiclet beyond 

romance and into the mainstream yeah right now that's what Harlequin is doing okay you've got the publisher you've got the editorial director and you've got an editor you know we're reading your books and you are excited to promote you and are having meetings with their sales force and marketing people just about you I have some chosen stills from our photo shoot that's very small but we narrowed it down to this image which is bigger on the second walk a little bit there is room to make it bigger and I think just by function of moving it up its 

but I'm wondering if we can maybe bump up the size of reading a little bit I just see it laid out and see what we think my by here we have any space to do that we can try I'm finding that I'm more competitive than I thought especially as an african-american writer so I don't know I just I want to be a bit of a trailblazer I guess in some ways I never thought that of myself but I I realize it now [Music] captain - the spell to feel after a long day at work coming home doing groceries making supper helping kids with the homework reading 

romanced makes me go oh I kind of want that you sit down and you go I need a romance [Music] really Gary if you granted it would have changed I was researching my dissertation on the differences in the way men and women write fiction and in order to do that I had to read romance songs so I went to use bookstore and said give me 100 romance novels for 30 days I had written hundred stories where woman had a problem she struggled and she won and years of academia had told me a woman had a problem she struggled and she lost by the end of the month I was woman hear me roar I got out I thought I could do anything and 

it was such a huge change it had to be the books Jennifer Cruz II is not alone in how she feels about the romance novel others agree that romance gives women a lot more than just a happy ending I had entered the business at a time when romance was taking off in the early 80s and I really believed in the books because I felt they took a feminist message that at that 

time was being debated on a very high level and brought it home to women in the Midwest who had kids and were living a real life so you know the early silhouette desires were saying to those women at the first time you can have a job you could have an orgasm you're entitled to have a husband who you have a real relationship with and I thought it was a very 

effective way to enrich people's lives that way I know the stereotype is that you know romances are just about women being you know waiting to be rescued but that's not how they are at all there are women and men sort of breaking the rules going out getting what they want in life and ending up very happily as a result and often the heroine rescues the hero as much as he rescues her people say Oh romance novels their rape novels their you know their escapist fantasy women read them because they're sick of the kids in their 

husband and they want to escape to another world and that's not it at all these are stories about five foot two inch girls with long red hair who wrapped these 6-foot hunky pirates around their little fingers their empowerment fantasies another part of the power is the reader at the end of a romance feels joy and so feels hopeful herself not in a one-to-one sort of way but certainly overall you feel just more optimistic when you've finished a romance 

novel like maybe your own choices are either more available or more possible once upon a time there were three women and they believed in happy endings if the business is going one way the business is just gonna have to go that way because I'm going you know my own way I can only write a book that I love and that I feel passionate about anything else is going 

to come out sounding flat which means I'd be wasting my time and it wouldn't ever get published anyway so I think in the end a good book is a good book and and a good book will find a home [Music] in five years time I want to be in New York Times best seller on 

the main list not the extended list no I would like to be within that top top ten on the New York Times so that's my lofty goal for the next five years I want my books to be is readily available for the average consumer to pick up and buy as all the big names you know that's what I want it's not too big it's a goal I don't think it's too big [Music] [Applause] looking for love looking for romance language alicia's Lehigh's hi Stevie eyes meeting eyes lips touching [Music]

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