Day 16 AC Arthur – The Reality of Romance

The Reality of Reading Romance

Prospective Reader: What type of books do you write? shifter's claim2-1

Me: [smiling proudly] I write romance, paranormal and contemporary, very sexy and steamy love stories.

Prospective Reader: [frowning like a juvenile] I hate romance. It’s so unrealistic.

I’ve had this reaction more than once in my career as I’m sure other writers have as well. And yet, it bothers me every time. How many of us have met a great guy, dated, had a few obstacles, overcame them and got married? Me!! [I yell exuberantly while raising my hand] I know I’m not the only one raising my hand either. How many of us are looking for a great guy to date, to work through issues and to live happily ever after? [I can see more hands being raised.] And how many of us just love to escape into a world where these dreams are made a reality every time? [More hands going up. Yay!]

One of my favorite reactions to reading romance is when the butterflies appear in my stomach as I turn each page wondering if love will actually conquer all. In Nora Roberts’, Daring To Dream, Margo Sullivan and Josh Templeton had me nervous and waiting with bated breath for them to get it together and put the past behind them. And when they finally made it I was elated for them. I’ve read this book more than a dozen times. Jill Shalvis brought me to the town of Lucky Harbor where in Simply Irresistable Maddie Moore and Jax Cullen had some pretty realistic issues standing between them. Did they overcome them? Sure they did, but not without a lot of ups and downs, and great sex in between! We can never leave out the great sex!

How many of us are looking for great sex? [Yeah, I’m not even going to count the number of hands I see going up.]

The last time I checked, having an absentee mother and looking for a new start in life, making mistakes in our past that come back to haunt us and simply wanting to be loved, are pretty realistic parts of life. So where’s the unrealistic part? Is it in finding a happy ever after? If that’s the thought then aren’t we a dismal bunch of pessimistic people.

I read romance because it makes me feel good, it makes me feel hopeful, when the real world sometimes paints a different picture. I write romance because I love the journey of walking two people down the path that will bring them a happy ever after, the ending that I wish for everyone, even the cynical reader who walks away from my table with the juvenile frown.

Recommendations :

For sexy, heartfelt romances, I highly recommend Farrah Rochon, Phyllis Bourne and Sherrelle Green.

  2014 Questions For The Author

Describe the most daring, adventurous or inspiring thing you ever did.

Daring and adventurous are not words normally associated with me. LOL I’m an introvert and I like schedules and dependability. I know, boring right? Let’s see, I went on a ski trip a few years ago and although I was still too nervous to ski I did try snow tubing and actually enjoyed it.

Tell us about your journey to becoming a writer. (How did you decide to get started? Did you always know or was there a specific moment when you knew?)

When I was in tenth grade I won a writing contest wherein we had to write about our favorite teacher. That was the first time I realized people actually liked what I wrote—because parts of that essay were absolutely fiction. J I had already been reading the Sweet Valley High series by Francine Pascal and my mother’s Danielle Steele books. By the time I was in eleventh grade I had begun reading Nora Roberts and wondering how I would write her characters differently. I knew then that I loved to write, but not necessarily that I wanted to be a professional writer. That decision came later on when circumstances caused me to leave my full time job to stay at home with my sick daughter. I had several books and a play finished by that point but being home afforded me time to research becoming published. I figured this might be a way of earning income while being able to take care of my daughter. Three years later I received my first writing contract.

Tell us about The (or A) Book That Changed Your Life. (Why?)

Danielle’s Steele’s Star introduced me to complex characters and the idea that a story could be written in several different ways to get to a happy ending. I loved the journey to adulthood that Crystal Wyatt had to take in search of her true place in life. Her story evoked all sorts of emotion within me and instead of simply enjoying reading as I had done previously, I’d begun to live for the next story, the next escape so to speak.

A.C. is generously giving away 3 copies of SHIFTER’S CLAIM for U.S. readers (entry below) and 1 copy for international friends (enter here).


AC Arthur Bio

Artist C. Arthur was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland where she currently resides with her husband and three children. An active imagination and a love for reading encouraged her to begin writing in high school and she hasn’t stopped since.

Working in the legal field for more than twenty years now she’s seen lots of horrific things and longs for the safe haven reading a romance novel brings. Her debut novel Object of His Desire was written when a picture of an Italian villa sparked the idea of an African-American/Italian hero. To date, Artist has written in several genres including young adult paranormal (written as Artist Arthur,, erotic romance as Sapphire Blue, a sensual contemporary romance following the loves and life of The Donovan Family, and most recently a sexy paranormal series titled The Shadow Shifters, both written as A.C. Arthur ( .

Determined to bring a new edge to romance, Artist continues to develop intriguing plots, sensual love scenes, racy characters and fresh dialogue—thus keeping the readers on their toes!

Buy A.C.’s Books:

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  • Debbie Oxier

    Thank you!

  • Emmel

    Yes, romance might have an ultra-focus on the relationship, but it’s always based on the reality of emotion and what all of us are capable of feeling. And I do hope your daughter is better now!

  • Wonderful, humorous post! I hope your daughter is ok. I’ll surely try your books!

  • Anna

    I also loved Daring to Dream, with Margo and Josh, I think because Margo worked so hard to reestablish her life. But the love story was pretty amazing too.

  • Patty Vasquez

    I never understand that comment about romance being unrealistic when so many books on the best seller lists are about heroes solving single-handedly international intrigue and saving us all from potential world annihilation. It seems much healthier to me to be reading about working things out without bloodshed, and hope and love.

  • Quinn Fforde

    I agree! I also appreciated that you told us about taking care of your daughter. Very moving.

  • Debbie Fuller

    Loved, loved, loved your article. Exactly what I’ve always thought about people who ridicule romance. Looking forward to reading your books.

  • Erica H

    Liked your article, I haven’t read you yet but I will definitely try you soon.

  • Matysha Lewis

    Hey AC! I’m glad u won that contest in the 10th grade because I this the romance literary world would definitely be missing something if you would have felt discouraged had u not won!!! Keep up the great work AC!!!!! Impatiently the releases of Eve of Passion & Needing You until then I think the Shadow shifters series cxn keep me busy!

  • Sue G.

    I love my happy endings too! It is just such a nice, happy feeling.

  • Sara Underhill

    I agree, there are a LOT of realistic aspects to the romance genre! I really love digging into a book with an interesting hero and heroine, and basically just watching how their relationship develops.

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    I agree that romance books contain a lot of realistic parts. In fact I have read a number of romance books that are better written than some fiction books.

  • M Kuxhaus

    I love your enthusiasm! Your essay was like a burst of energy. 🙂

  • Courtney Cogswell

    I’m so using your argument next time I have to defend my love of romance….I think you make some very good points in your essay and I agree that there are very realistic parts in most romance novels. And if I’m reading for enjoyment I’m gonna need some steamy moments to balance out the struggles and then a nice happy ending to wrap it up. Looking forward to checking out your books! Thanks for the great essay and being part of RARM 🙂

  • Deborah Fortner

    Loved the blog post. I agree wholeheartedly with you. Romance is real

  • Carrie

    Those who hate romance are definitely missing out. What is so wrong with wanting a happily ever after in books and in our own lives?

  • rebecca moe

    Excellent argument! Were you at the Baltimore Book Festival last year, by any chance?

  • Sheila M

    Ah, Sweet Valley High…

  • Glenda

    I’m one of the lucky ones who has found her HEA, and I still love reading about other’s finding theirs. It can and does happen, just not always as dramatically as in the books. 🙂

  • Martha B

    What a brilliant comeback to those who are dismissive of romance. After all, I don’t question their taste in reading. For me, one of the best things about reading romance is the sense of belonging; I like being part of a community that values the journey towards Happily Ever After.

  • donnas

    Awesome post. Those that look down on romance need theirs eyes opened, as it is all around them

  • mariannewestrich

    Romance gives us the escape from the day-to-day that we all need! 😎

  • Stephanie M.

    I raised my hand and it stayed up while I read your post. I had to put it down to type (and it was getting tired). 🙂 I can’t wait to read your books!

  • Janie McGaugh

    Great post. If a book or movie doesn’t have a happy ending (even when there’s no romance), I don’t want to read/watch it!

  • Erin F

    loved this post 🙂 Congrats to AC on her series! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Gretchen Miller

    Great post. loved this

  • Pamby50

    I raised my hand. Thanks for sharing. I have added you to my list to read.

  • Joan Varner

    I totally agree with your comments. I read romance for the escape and to enjoy two peoples journey with love, conflict and hope.

  • Jen C

    Yes! Here’s to good feelings! 🙂

  • Ruth

    Thanks for sharing. I love the escape of romance as well.