Why we’ve decided to capture the romance audience.
Men write thrillers I suppose due to testosterone. Mine has subdued, so I wimped out and started writing romance novels.
Seriously, I have always been a romantic. I used to watch all of the old black and white films with the greats, Gable and Leigh, Bogey and McCall, Tracy and Hepburn, Betty Davis and, oh hell, she just scared me, but helped create in me a cautious respect for women.
I decided, however, that I didn’t want to just write romance. I enjoy a dry sense of humor and have allowed that to circumnavigate my books. I also like to delve into the paranormal and add a little touch of darkness. I feel that this adds to the drama so that it doesn’t just become another Hallmark moment.
Like I have said in past blogs, I test my writings based on the tear test. It’s hard to do that if you are writing Thrillers, unless you get scared from your own writings. If a tear captures a reader, then I feel like I have done my job. It is much easier to accomplish this with the romance audience.
Since the majority of the romance audience is undoubtedly female, it does become important that my books don’t become bromances. While there are considerable action sequences in my books, the protagonist switches between the main male and female characters, which I feel allows something for everyone.
Spencer’s Two Cents: I inherited a sense of Romanticism from my Dad. Sounds cheesy, but it’s true. Both my parents taught me how to treat people (and women specifically) respectfully, but my Dad always coached me in the art of love. If you’ve read our book, you’ll recognize some of Tom’s courting strategies (singing songs, delivering a well-timed rose, driving absurd distances to be with his lover) as Bennington classics. Anyway, I guess what I’m getting at here is that I’ve always preferred a good love story.
But, I think to suggest that men are more apt to write in the thriller genre and women in the romance genre is a bit ludicrous. I think it’s more contextual than that. For me, it’s up to the individual reader to decide whether or not they read a novel like If as a thriller or a romance–because it has elements of both. This discussion connects back to a previous blog post of ours regarding a “man’s idea of romance.” The fact is, different people perceive different narratives…differently! The example I always return to is one of my favorite books: Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk. If you’ve read it or just seen the Brad Pitt movie, you’d probably typecast the story as one that revolves around psychological drama, action, and violence. But Palahniuk famously called it a love story in an interview…he said that ALL of his books were actually romances.
Let that sink in for a minute before asking me again why men do this and women do that…but that’s just my two cents.