“It is easier to sound inspired and clever than it is to be real.” – Cecil Murphey at the 2012 OCW Summer Conference
For years, I’d fallen victim to what happens to many artists, writers and musicians: I let naysayers and critics get to me. I let the opinions of other shape and influence my writing rather than being true to my calling and to my interests.
Writing “romance” has long been associated with frivolity and sub-par writing. So when I described my genre of choice to others, I’d label it simply as “Historical fiction.” Though most of my plots do defy the traditional romance elements, love is at the heart of my novels.
I was hiding who I really was and who I really wanted to be.
Well. No more.
Yes, I’ve come out of the romance closet. I love stories with hunky heros and heroines who can stand on their own two feet. I love historical romances with as much credible facts as heart-puttering moments. I love what I love, and I’ll write what I’m called to write.
If historical romance isn’t your thing, that’s fine. I won’t force it on you. My blog will continue to focus on my research, horse history, photography and writing journey.
If you think me writing historical romance makes me less of a writer, so be it.
Since I first started writing novels in the 6th grade, I’ve done so for one reason: because I couldn’t find that particular book out there (the one I created in my head), so I would write it. And the books tucked away in my heart aren’t out on the market. Not yet. If they never reach beyond my computer screen, I’ll still be happy. Because I’m writing what drives me and writing what my fingers can’t help but write.
In an interview with Hunger Games Director Gary Ross, he said the books and movie were a success because of the way the story resonated with people – and the movie translated so well with the audiences because he didn’t set out to make a blockbuster movie. He was tucked away in the woods with the cast for months and cared only about the heart of the story and staying true to the message of the story.
Artists can waiver in the quality of their art if they let the expectations of audiences or public perception dictate the content. You have to be true to the story. You have to be true to yourself.
Otherwise, you’re simply a fraud.
I will no longer be a fraud. I’m writing what I want to write.