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On Romance novels

I was doing a bit of research about “love” in order to understand the subject I write about better. Love, in many commercial romance novels, mean: “I have never desired another woman/man more than I do you.” But love, according to Stephen R. Covey in his book “The Seven Habits,” had a different concept of what love was:

At one seminar where I was speaking on the concept of proactivity, a man came up and said, “Stephen, I like what you’re saying. But every situation is so different. Look at my marraige. I’m really worried. My wife and I just don’t have that same feelings for each other  we used to have. I guess I just don’t love her anymore and she doesn’t love me. What can I do?”

“The feeling isn’t there anymore?” I asked

“That’s right,” he affirmed. “And we have three children we’re really concerned about. What do you suggest?”

“Love her,” I replied.

“I told you, the feeling just isn’t there anymore.”

“Love her.”

“You don’t understand. The feeling of love just isn’t there.”

“Then love her. If the feeling isn’t there, that’s a good reason to love her.”

“But how do you love when you don’t love?”

“My friend, love is a verb. Love–the feeling–is a fruit of the verb. So love her. Sacrifice. Listen to her. Empathize. Appreciate. Affirm her. Are you willing to do that?”

So, the love Covey is referring to here is very different to the love projected in romance novels. His definition of it means to devote oneself to the other regardless of how you feel. Whereas, the love in romance novels, is one based mainly on feelings.

What do you guys think? What sort of love would you reflect in your writing? Do you want to be a writer who will offer readers escapism or the truth?

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Romance Genre

Here is a documentary about Romantic Fiction. I found it very interesting (and it definately will be for those of you who write romance). It gives you an in-depth of the romance industry (the most “despised” genre) and you grow a certain respect for it. Now, as my friend said: “Never again will I be ashamed to have a Georgette Heyer on my bedside table!

Happily Ever After
Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Interesting, eh?

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Filed under Book & Film, Thoughts, Writing