Why we need romance right now: a talk at the Linthicum Library

I don’t think there’s anything more fun as a writer than meeting with people curious about my books or my writing habit.

During Valentine’s Week, I took part in a panel of Maryland Romance Writers at the Linthicum Library in Anne Arundel County and we talked about all kinds of literary things: tropes, heroes and heroine, book covers, and the whole writing process.

I was pleased to be with M.K. Hale and Lang Johnson, both young writers with terrific books. I learned about assassin romance (Lang’s book, Devil Breath) and M.K. Hale’s sassy heroes in Timeshare Boyfriend—a book inspired by her own timeshare beach vacation.

We had a Romance Bingo (tropes such as enemies to lovers and assassin romance) and a trivia question (Who is Barbara Cartland?) along with our discussion of books, stories and what inspires us.

Writing books involves a bit of magic, inspiration, and an enormous jug of perseverance, and we accomplish our work mostly alone. So it’s always nice to talk to people who have questions about what it takes to write a novel.

After all, we write for our readers as much as for ourselves. So it’s delightful to talk about the comment on a cruise that spurred the writing of The Last Gift, or the family vacations that led to Fearless Summer, or the travel writing that inspired Divided Loyalties.

I was, I’ll be honest here, blown away when someone told me what they liked about Divided Loyalties. I forget these books become part of someone’s memory the way they are always a part of mine. That’s Marge, a page at the library, on the right with copies of my romances. She has already read my historical novels.

Also wonderful— there’s nothing like someone who asks where they can get copies of my books. I’m happy to tell them all the places online and my favorite Greyhound bookstore in Berlin, Md.

I’m so grateful to Caroline Sharp (that’s Caroline and me in the adjacent picture) of the Linthicum Library for setting up the room and giving us such a warm welcome. All three of us agreed we had a great time.

And, if you want any of my sweet romances—Inn by the Lake, The Last Gift, and Fearless Summer, you’ll find them at the Linthicum Library—along with my two historical novels. I left copies all of them–so ask for them if you don’t see them.

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