Sunday, October 26, 2008

Romantic fantasy - is it good or bad?

I wrote a story several years ago, posted it on East of the Web and forgot all about it. Until about a week ago. It's called "Brazen". Apparently it's been racking up a lot of comments which I just checked out today. Why? Because an audio publisher also found it and has approached me about publishing it. Wahoo! That was the easiest sale I've ever made even if it was the longest wait. :) Anyway, I reread it just now and then checked out what other people had to say. I'm not finished with all the comments yet as I got stopped by this one: "Very mills n boon.sappy n unreal.thts not romance.women always write fantasy stuff instead of finding romance in real life daily wonder girls get their heart broken everyday,its cause theyre brainwashed by such material.all in all i didnt enjoy it cuz it makes u less hopeful in fallin in love.n perfection doesnt is so much more than fantasy n lust" It reminds me of something my husband told me years ago. He, too, echoed this guy's (I presume it's a man who wrote this from the tone) sentiment that romance novels give women unrealistic notions of love. Um... Do Rambo and Die Hard movies make all men feel as if they can save the world, fight off the bad guys, get the girl, and shoot up everybody, do inhumanly impossible things, and survive? That seems to be a man's fantasy and they don't think women should worry or complain they have that. Also, although men (at least my hubby) loves this Die Hard stuff, I don't see him shoot a gun or even climb a tree. He seems to know the difference. Can't men give us the same credit? Personally, I love my day job and my love - most aspects. But sometimes it's damned hard and sad and stressful, whether it's because the kids are fighting nonstop, or a nasty donor's cussed me out for something that's not personally my fault, or because some idiot tail-gated me all the way home, or because another hurricane devastated Haiti and we're doing our damndest to help and knowing it's not enough. After any one of those stresses, much less several combined, I need to escape. My preferred escape is to write or read a romance novel where I know everything will turn out happy in the end. I presume the guys like Rambo and Die Hard at least a little bit because Bruce Willis and Sly Stallone survive and made the world a better place. Although sometimes, I swear my husband loves the blood and gore of watching all the cars crashing and burning, blood and guts. I think that should worry me way more that he likes violence than the fact that a woman likes the happily ever after of love. I know people say women come from Venus and men from Mars, that our chemistry is different, but whoa! That's pretty different. I respect the reader's opinion, but I also keep my right to disagree with it. Several of the other comments were very positive and obviously the publisher liked it a lot. :) The comment isn't getting me down, just making me think. Not for the first time. Perhaps when I was young I was so caught up in the romantic fantasy that I made a major mistake. Oh well. Live and yearn. In case I've wet your appetite to see my story, here's a small excerpt and the link. It's published under one of my pseudonyms so don't be confused. :)

Brazen by Ashley Ladd for your reading pleasure at: East End of the Web "Ugh!" Stephanie Dwyer slammed her apartment door and stomped her foot. "Creep!" A picture fell off the wall and shattered. Water logged, droplets dripped from her nose, her hair, and her eyelashes, pooling at her feet. She scowled. Her new high heels were utterly ruined. Courtney hid a chuckle behind her hand. Pointing the remote control at the television, she clicked off the sitcom she'd been watching. Her lips crooked into a half smirk. "This one turned into a jerk, too?" Stephanie dropped her purse onto the coffee table and flopped onto the couch. She kicked her shoes off, scaring the cat who ran into the other room. Staring at the ceiling, she said, "All men should crash and burn." "That good?" Courtney sat forward, flicking her long black hair behind her shoulders. "There's got to be a couple of good men out there. All we need is one good man each. Is that too much to ask?" Stephanie lifted pained eyes to her roommate and best friend. "I don't think there's two good guys in this whole universe. I give up. I've had it. I'm not kissing any more toads." Courtney looked thoughtful, tapping her chin with her forefinger. "Maybe we've been looking in the wrong universe." Her friend was losing it big time. "What are you talking about?" Handsome Patrick had seemed so perfect, so wonderful. Until she'd caught him with Alyssa tonight, telling her the moon and stars shone only for her, that they were soulmates - the same pathetic lines he'd snared her with. Some soulmate! Jumping to her feet, Courtney paced in front of her. "What we need is a vacation away from the city to someplace totally different." "With totally different kinds of men." Despite herself, her interest was piqued. "We need men who are the opposite of the bozos we've been finding here. No more big shot professionals." Courtney grinned from ear to ear. "No more men who drive Mercedes." "Or who wear Rolex's." Steph started to feel alive again. "Or who drink champagne." Courtney downed a sip of her diet soda. Mischief danced in her dark eyes. "Give me a down to earth man who guzzles beer." The spirit grabbed Steph, rejuvenating her. "Give me a man who wears boots!" Courtney slapped her thigh. "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?" Steph couldn't help but crack a smile. "Let's catch ourselves a couple of cowboys." "Yahoo!" Courtney crossed the room and turned on the computer.
To read more, go to East End of the Web.


Sandra Cox said...

Many congrats, Ash. That is absolutely wonderful!

Unknown said...

Thanks Sandra. I'll mail the contract tomorrow after I can get it printed out. I really have to buy myself a new printer.

DJ Kirkby said...

Womderful news hon. I think a bit of an escape from reality can only ever be a good thing in this fast, cold world we often live. Thank you for your stories, I love them. xo

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

YAY Ash! Big congrats. And there are always going to be those who have to dis romance. Ignore them!

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