I’ve been thinking a lot about the new book, well, books. Truthfully, I thought I was tired of Willow Bay, but now, I’m wondering if maybe I was just tired in general because ideas are popping. Saturday’s Making Magic miniconference helped stoke my creative fire and Lani Diane Rich’s words helped me more than I can say.
She reminded me that what I do is important work–it’s bringing joy and escape and love to people’s lives. Confession? I often feel the need to apologize for my books. How dumb is that? Kate would probably smack me upside the head if she were here. Hell, she was the one who went all around a restaurant passing out my swag and telling people that her little sister was writer and had a new book coming out. Gotta tell you, I loved that day!
But here’s the thing. Whenever I tell people that the title of one of my books is Sex and the Widow Miles, I always feel compelled to explain that the title comes from the old movie from the sixties–Sex and the Single Girl. (Lani, if you’re reading this, I know you’re rolling your eyes and I totally don’t blame you.) So why do I do that? I don’t owe anyone a fucking excuse because my book title has the word (shhh!) sex in it. Frankly, not only does the title have SEX in it, the book has SEX in it. Great sexy sex, I might add–sensual, loving sex.
Sometimes when someone asks about my writing and I say I’m a romance novelist, the first thing they say is “Oh, dirty books,” and they snicker. I quickly say, “No, not dirty books…” and hurry to explain why my books aren’t dirty books. They aren’t, but that’s not the point. The point is I’m explaining myself again, instead if looking them right in the eye and asking, “What am I supposed to say to that?” or engaing them by asking them what they’re reading. Lani told us that those kinds of sniggering questions can be an opportunity to educate people about romance and what a gift romance novels are to readers. Explain how important my work is to the world. But if it’s clear the person is not at all educable, then walk away and go get another glass of wine.
Today on the Word Wranglers blog, my friend and kindred spirit, Liz Flaherty pointed out the most significant thing Lani said, “We get to do this. Because we’re writers, we get to do this amazing thing every day!” So no need to apologize or let anyone diminish me and the significance of what I write… because I am a great writer.
Five Things I’m Grateful for Today:
- The creative well is filling up again.
- We’re at the lake.
- Lovely Beer-30 with Patt and Ron.
- The living room of the cottage looks terrific–clean carpet and new furniture arrangement–why does make life seem so much nicer?
- Talked to Son twice today–always a treat!