Day 14 Suzanne Palmieri – Romance is Everywhere

A Different Kind Of Romance

9781250015532_custom-e6eb8549b9b3a03137510b62c1c3dcbec9357dcc-s6-c30Last year, while hauling garbage out of the can in the kitchen, I started my almost daily mantra of “Don’t break, please God bag… don’t break…” while I carefully (yet quickly) made my way to the garbage can outside. I have three kids and a husband who love to see JUST HOW MUCH we can stuff into the garbage before someone (usually me) takes the dare and brings it out.

It didn’t break, that time… but as I stood there breathing with relief, a thought occurred to me… “I could get a box of those fancy trash bags that smell good and are made not to break….”Of course I could. And I did… and in many practical ways, my life took a turn for the less stressful.

Now, what on earth does this memory have to do with Read A Romance Month?


You see, I’d become so conditioned to buying one particular garbage bag, FOR SO MANY YEARS, that I failed to realize that the world held a whole new set of products I had yet to try.

Pavlov, eat your heart out.

My novels are not considered traditional romance. As a matter of fact, there are readers who sometimes believe they are getting a romance from the wistful covers of my books, and then leave reviews about the Romance Flopping…. (Please note, bad reviews never bother me. EVER. I even have a friend in Colorado who is only my friend because she didn’t like one of my books… I’m serious. I grow from them.)

My current releases, The Witch of Belladonna Bay (as Suzanne Palmieri), and Empire Girls (as Suzanne Hayes) are not as different as one would think. Empire Girls is Historical Fiction, and there IS romance there… but it’s very light. And The Witch of Belladonna Bay is a southern gothic murder mystery (family saga magical realism etc etc…) see the problem? Sometimes there is simply NO genre.

I like to tell good stories. And I like to read good stories! And I like a healthy dose of romance in the setting and in the interpersonal relationships. I like to escape when I read, and I intend to create a wonderful escape for anyone who reads the novels I write.

One of my favorite books growing up was A Knight In Shining Armor. Jude Deveraux. Like Outlander? Yeah, like that. Anyway… I grew up on what I now know would be considered Gothic Romance: Jane Eyre. Wuthering Heights. Rebecca. And even The Secret Garden… (Would we consider this a middle grade gothic romance?) I would. I always wanted Mary to grow up and marry Dickon. Who didn’t?

Anyway, here’s my whole point. That day when I realized I could buy new fangled garbage bags… I began to realize I could open myself up (again) to all sorts of things I’d limited.

And I began to read, and write across genre. Taking the elements of what I hoped were great storytelling and letting the characters and setting sing to me. Do I write straight up, traditional romance? No. Will I ever? Maybe! Because the story tells me where to go, and that’s where I go.

And I read more novels now than ever before, meeting and learning from incredible storytellers who run the gamut as well: from Kristan Higgins to Sue Monk Kidd.

I’m romancing the story.

Come explore all the different adventures we can go on together! And never forget, romance is alive and well in every single thing we do, and see, and read. In the sheets soaking in sunshine on the line. In the laughter of children. In the sweet way our lovers say our name.

Romance is in a moonless sky, in an afternoon drive, and even in a dreary, rainy summer.

Romance is the beginning of all good stories. And for me, a romantic ending is all I want from this life.

>> >> Thank you to the romance readers, for reading my books and finding out exactly what I mean! I’m so honored to be asked to join this Read a Romance adventure. Because, life would be so boring without a twist, wouldn’t it?

Suzanne generously giving away one copy of The Witch of Belladonna Bay and one copy of Empire Girls to two U.S. readers, with apologies to international friends. Entry form below.

suzanne palmieri

Suzanne Palmieri is the author of The Witch of Belladonna Bay (May 13th 2014), and The Witch of Little Italy and co-author of Empire Girls (as Suzanne Hayes May 27th 2014), and I’ll Be Seeing You . Find her at

“I’m a Lost Witch. Are you a Lost Witch Too?”


Buy Suzanne’s books:

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  • Debbie Oxier


  • cheryl c.

    I just loved this part of your post because it was insightful and almost poetic.

    “Romance is in a moonless sky, in an afternoon drive, and even in a dreary, rainy summer.
    Romance is the beginning of all good stories. And for me, a romantic ending is all I want from this life.”

  • mariannewestrich

    You’ve just been added to my TBR list!

  • Anna

    I loved I’ll Be Seeing You!!

    And I really, really, wanted Mary to grow up and marry Dickon… I mean, how could she not?

  • Meghan

    I love meeting new authors! Can’t wait to read your books 🙂

  • M Kuxhaus

    Cross-genres and experimenting sound like fun!

  • Stephanie M.

    A Knight In Shining Armor and Outlander are two of my all time favorites! I will add your books to my TBR list. Thank you.

  • Debbie Fuller

    You sold me on trying your books.

  • Patty Vasquez

    I really appreciate your statement, “I’m romancing the story.” I believe those who are voracious readers are, in fact, romanced by all types of good writing. I’m glad you’re here writing today!

  • Sheila M

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I’ll have to try one of your books!

  • Courtney Cogswell

    I’m intrigued to check out your books after reading your post. I do read mostly romance but I typically read at least a book or two a month from another genre because I just enjoy good stories in general. And honestly, I somehow seem to find some amount of romance in nearly everything I read so sometimes it seems hard to put just one label on a book, thus no genre as you described. As long as there is a good storyline, engaging characters and a satisfactory resolution, I’m sold. So, thanks for joining RARM and I’ll definitely add you to be to be read list 🙂

    And as a side note, the Secret Garden was definitely one of the first books I read that starting driving me toward my love of romance!

  • Glenda

    I’m one of those readers who discovered she enjoyed the romantic elements in those many books from multiple genres before jumping into “proper romance” novels. You’re a new to me author. I’m going to have to check out your work. 🙂

  • Joan Varner

    Thank you for sharing your view on romance and love.

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    Thank you for sharing your views on romance. I enjoy finding romance in different types of books too.

  • Judy Goodnight

    An intriguing post…adding you to my list of new to me authors to try.

  • Martha B

    Your essay hooked me with these words you wrote:
    “Romance is the beginning of all good stories. And for me, a romantic ending is all I want from this life.” That is so true for me. Thank you.

  • rebecca moe

    The best part of August is adding new authors to my TBR. Thanks for posting!

  • Ann Mettert


  • Erin F

    lol… what a great post! Thanks for sharing. Definitely adding these to my want list 😉

  • Pamby50

    Great analogy. We get so use to one kind & we miss out on all the others. I Loved a Knight in Shining Armor. Looking forward to reading a book by you.

  • Kristan Higgins

    Thanks for the shout-out, Suzy! Love, love, love your books!

  • Toni Linenberger

    I like your approach. 🙂

  • Rachel F

    Thank you for your thoughtful post. Looking forward to reading your books.