Caitlin Crews/Megan Crane – Loving Romance

It’s Read-A-Romance Month.

Welcome!

Visit every day in August to see what 93+ of your favorite authors have to say about The Joy of Romance. Do you love Romance? Let’s celebrate. xo

ReadARomanceMonth.com   |   RARM 2015 Calendar    |    RARM on Facebook

Today is Harlequin Presents Day! We have three terrific Harlequin Presents authors representing this quintessential romance line. Enjoy!

Romance as Medicine

I love romance novels.

I found my first romance novel in the local five and dime when I was twelve and they’ve desert sheikbeen saving my life ever since.

In my hopeless years, romances offered me examples of light and grace, and helped me believe not only that love is real, but that I could love myself when I thought that was impossible.

In my darkest times, romances commiserated with my grief and then, step by step, story by story, showed me the way out.

Romances have made me laugh, made me cry. Vampires have taught me about loyalty and sheikhs have taught me about strength. Billionaires have taught me about honor and cowboys have taught me how to laugh. Heroines have inspired me to be braver than my insecurities, smarter than my weaknesses, and to walk into my fears and vulnerabilities so I might make it out the other side, whole. If I am fierce, if I am strong, if I trust myself, it’s because romance heroines took me by the hand and taught me how.

I think romances are medicine.  The happy ending helps, but it’s all the many paths to getting there, too.  They don’t just pat us on the head and tell us it’s going to be okay, these stories, they show us how.

A few years ago I went through a very tough time as I struggled with miscarriages and makeyouburninfertility.  When I managed to climb out of the dark pit I was in, I started something I called Project Joy, which was about recognizing the dark places we find ourselves in sometimes and climbing our way out of them, step by difficult step.  (Find more information about Project Joy here.) I talked about the way I made it back into the light, and how often I thought I wouldn’t make it at all.  But one of the things I did a lot of in those days was read romances.  So many romances.  So many stories that helped me hope again, when I’d forgotten how. 

Life can be so hard. Romances are joy. 

Page after page after page.

Megan recommends:

A book I loved beyond reason this year was Kulti by Mariana Zapata  (marianazapata.com).  It’s a slow burn between a former German soccer star who is now the celebrity coach of an American women’s soccer team, and I loved it so much I think I’ve raved about it to every person I’ve come into contact with since I read it a few months ago. 

I also loved the latest Nalini Singh ( nalinisingh.com ), Shards of Hope. I’m talking bought it hardcover, took it on a plane trip, and sobbed when it was finished kind of love. 

And another book that grabbed me by the heart and squeezed me tight was Brokedown Cowboy by Maisey Yates ( maiseyyates.com )  It’s the third in her new Copper Ridge series (and I highly recommend the first two as well) but WOW, did I love this book!


Questions for the Author:

Tell us about a moment in your life when you experienced sheer joy. 

Last year I decided to do a triathlon. I wanted to make my body bend to my will, which Trathlon Picsmight have been a smarter choice if I was any kind of athlete.  (I am not.) I trained for months. I ran more than I ever have in my life, and it was always hard. I trained and trained. On the day of the race, I discovered that I’d underestimated the swim course and that I probably should have spent more time riding my bike on some hills. (Ouch.) But then I got to the run, the final leg of the race, and everything… shifted. I knew that barring an asteroid taking me out, I would finish, even if I had to crawl. So I enjoyed myself. I was running alongside a beautiful lake in the Napa Valley on a gorgeous spring day. The sky and the water were competing to out-blue each other. I was singing songs in my head with the sun on my face and though I was aware of things that hurt and the intensity of what I’d done already that day, it didn’t affect me. It was 6.2 miles of sheer joy.

Tell us about a place that brings you joy, or is attached to a memory of joy.Cape Cod

This is a beach in Cape Cod, where I spent every summer of my life growing up.  When asked to close my eyes and think of my happy place, I think of this.

Tell us about a sound that brings you joy.

It’s always the sea.  It makes me feel like I can breathe.  Pure joy.  Though wind chimes help.

What recent book have you read that brought you joy. (Or a book you read in your life that brought you so much joy you’ve never forgotten it.) Why?

I read a book called Happiness for Beginners by Katherine Center recently.  It was magic.  An absolute joy from start to finish.  It kept me up late and left me grinning ear to ear and I still feel a little giddy thinking about it.

And for fun, the joy of choice ~

Pick your Chris! Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pine, Chris Pratt, Chris Rock, Chris Evans or Christopher Plummer (circ. 1964 aka Capt. Von Trapp?) – trying for a little diversity! ;o)

Pure joy would be not having to choose!  I like the same Chrises everybody does, of course.  I also have a weakness for early Law & Order Chris Noth.  And I definitely have a thing for Christopher Meloni from Law & Order: SVU.

Megan is generously giving away 5 backlist books, kindle or print, winner’s choice! Open to international readers. To enter, leave a comment here, or on the Facebook post (find that here) or both. International friends, include your country in the comment so we know you’re international. :o) Comments must be left by 11:59 pm CST on Sept 6.


Megan CraneUSA Today bestselling, RITA-nominated, and critically-acclaimed author Megan Crane has written more than fifty books since her debut in 2004.  She has been published by a variety of publishers, including each of New York’s Big Five.  She’s won fans with her women’s fiction, chick lit, and work-for-hire young adult novels as well as with the Harlequin Presents she writes as Caitlin Crews. These days her focus is on contemporary romance from small town to international glamor, cowboys to bikers, and beyond. She sometimes teaches creative writing classes both online at mediabistro.com and at UCLA Extension’s prestigious Writers’ Program, where she finally utilizes the MA and PhD in English Literature she received from the University of York in York, England. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest with a husband who draws comics and animation storyboards and their menagerie of ridiculous animals.

Find Caitlin/Megan online:

megancrane.com     |     About Megan/Caitlin    |     Facebook      |    Twitter

 

Buy Caitlin/Megan’s books:

availableon-amazon  availableon-nookavailableon-kobo

(Please note that the Amazon button, most cover images and many text links connect to an affiliate page that supports Read-A-Romance Month. Thanks so much for your help)

  • mariannewestrich

    Loved your post! Reading really does bring us out of the darkness sometimes. It’s been my escape from the day-to-day through several really dark times.

    • Megan Crane

      Thank goodness for books!

  • Marissa Yip-Young

    Romance can make you forget for a moment in time.

    • Megan Crane

      Yes. And work a little magic on your broken heart while they’re at it. 🙂

  • Mirjam Leunissen

    I share your love for romance novels and I agree with you. Loved reading your blog post. I just finished reading the last book of Copper Ridge by Maisey Yates…sigh… (from the Netherlands)

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks for reading! And those books are SO GOOD, aren’t they??

      • Mirjam Leunissen

        They are SO good, read them all in just a couple of days. They made me laugh, they made me cry. I try to read slowly, but that does not work. Can’t wait for the next one.

  • Melissa Cowling Terry

    Romance really can add a little cheer and hope to your life.

    • Megan Crane

      It sure can!

  • Jennifer C

    Megan, I have loved your writing since I read English as a Second Language years ago, and I still remember how giddy I was when you sent me a friend request on Facebook. Giddy! Your posts are always uplifting and funny, and I love your pics and stories about your animal family, and of course your husband’s funny quotes. I also loved reading this essay. I had no idea of your fertility struggles, and knowing how you have turned that into a way of bringing even more positivity into others’ lives, it just makes me love you more. You bring so much joy to others through your writing and all you share with us – thank you!

    • Jennifer C

      p.s. I just downloaded Happiness for Beginners!

      • Megan Crane

        Tell me what you think–I couldn’t put it down!

    • Megan Crane

      Well, this comment makes me pretty giddy, so maybe we’re even. Thank you!!

  • jcp smith

    I enjoyed many of your books as Catlin Crewes. Now I know you under another name as well. (USA)

    • Megan Crane

      Yes–double the fun, I hope!

  • catslady

    You are a new to me author which is always fun – thanks!

    • Megan Crane

      Yay! Hope you find something that resonates with you!

  • LSUReader

    Congrats on your triathlon! What a great accomplishment. You are a new author for me. I enjoyed your post. Thanks.

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks so much for reading, LSUReader!

  • Karen Mikusak

    Love your books!

    • Megan Crane

      Yay! Thank you!

  • Carol Luciano

    Wow, congrats on the Triathlon. I’m looking forward to reading your books. Thanks for the giveaway.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks, Carol!

  • Debbie Fuller

    I agree with you that reading romance is all about finding/recovering hope and showing us how and becoming a stronger person. Thank you for the book recommendations and your insight. In this post you had some amazing words that I will be (trying) in comment to memory.

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks so much for reading, Debbie!

  • Kareni

    Thanks for an enjoyable post! Congratulations on completing your triathlon. Wishing you much joy with your writing and in life.

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks so much, Kareni!

  • Quinn Fforde

    I think almost all romance readers would say that they have used the books as medicine. I know I have. Where would we be without them?

    • Megan Crane

      I shudder to think!

  • May

    I Oooh… I agree… so many ‘good’ Chris to choose from! 🙂 (Canada)

    • Megan Crane

      There’s a proliferation of Chrises!

  • “Heroines have inspired me to be braver than my insecurities, smarter than my weaknesses, and to walk into my fears and vulnerabilities so I might make it out the other side, whole”. Inspiring words! Thank you so much! Marinella from Italy

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks for reading, Marinella!

    • Hi Marinella! :o) You’re one of Megan/Caitlin’s winners. Either reply to this or send your email address to bobbiwrites@att.net and I’ll have her send it out asap. (Sorry for the delay, it’s been a crazy month…) xo

      • Bobbi, what a wonderful news! Thank you so much to you and to the author! It was an amazing month, as always. And for the delay, not a problem, it’s a surprise now, so it brings so much joy!!!

  • marypreston

    Romances are a great way to refill the well.

    • Megan Crane

      They really are!

  • Ellen

    Reading always makes me feel better. Thanks for sharing.

  • Emmel

    I love the idea of romances as life savers. They do rescue us at times, don’t they?

    • Megan Crane

      They have truly saved my life, and more than once!

  • Erin F

    Congrats on the triathlon!!! Thanks for such a fun post 😉

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks, Erin! Glad you enjoyed it!

  • Ren

    Thanks for sharing. I love finding new authors!

    • Megan Crane

      Hooray!

    • Hi Ren! You’re one of Megan/Caitlin’s winners. Either reply ot this or send your email address to bobbiwrites@att.net and I’ll have her send it out asap. (Sorry for the delay, it’s been a crazy month…) xo

  • Marcy Shuler

    Reading romance makes me happy. Congrats on completing the triathlon!

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks Marcy!

  • Sue G.

    Congrats on the triathlon! That is a huge accomplishment!

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks! Sometimes I can’t believe I really did it!

  • Aye Lopez

    “I think romances are medicine. The happy ending helps, but it’s all the many paths to getting there, too. ”

    I think you are right in what you said!

    Thanks for the chance! You are a new author to me, looking forward to read your books.

    • Megan Crane

      I’m glad you agree, Aye! 🙂

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    I have found that reading romance is healing. When I need to escape or relax, I turn to romance. I’ve been reading romance books forever!! I stopped when I found Mr. Right thinking I didn’t need them. However the stress of life got to me and I really needed that escape (raising four kids, teaching high school full time, having a husband who worked nights so I was single parenting, not living near any family, . . .). Now my hubby encourages my reading of romance. Funny how things can change. I’m so sorry that you had to deal with infertility and the pain of miscarriage. Know that you are not alone, or the only one. I love that you decided to make a difference as you dealt with it. I’m so glad you write such wonderful books. You know how much I love your books!! <3

    • Megan Crane

      Thanks so much Eileen. xoxo

  • Diana Michelle Tidlund

    Having grown up in Mass since I was 4 I know exactly what you mean about Cape Cod Beaches, Martha’s Vineyard and Hampton Beach too….oh the memories…. we’d drop my handicapped brother (he was bedridden and couldn’t go on vacations because he needed dr’s all the time) off at the mass hospital school in Canton and go to the beach…. and dad would go deep sea fishing….we had a wonderful time….and collected shells…lol

    • Megan Crane

      Ahh! Cape Cod is so beautiful! What fantastic memories!

  • Ada H

    Hi Megan! Thanks for sharing your story with us. I totally agree that romances are page after page of joy. That to me is what makes romance fun, that after a tough day, you can just lose yourself in another world. Congrats on completing that marathon, I’m always in awe of people who can push themselves through the grueling race. I’m a fan from Canada!

    • Megan Crane

      Glad you’re a romance reader, Ada! I believe the best people are. 😉 And believe me, if I could do a triathlon, anyone could!

  • Courtney Cogswell

    I’m in awe of your marathon completion. I just started really working out and training in the last year to get myself back into shape. In July, I completed my first 5K and it was fabulous! I love that you’ve explored the healing properties of reading romance and have shared your experiences as well as created your Project Joy. I really look forward to reading your books–I’ve been on a major contemporary romance kick lately so they’ll fit right it! Thanks again for all that you do 🙂

    • megancrane

      Thanks so much, Courtney! And congrats on your first 5K!

  • Dawn Anderson

    I like the Law and Order Chrises too.

    • megancrane

      So very, very much. 🙂

  • Texas Book Lover

    WOW! What a great achievement to be proud of yourself for in completing the triathlon.

    • megancrane

      It was actually fun!

  • T. Rosado

    I enjoy the variety in your writing. I read so many genres that I can read nearly any book you write and not worry. It must be the ADD! (mine, not yours) haha

    • megancrane

      Ha! I’m so glad you like all my different stories! Hooray!

  • Kim

    It was your first triathlon, but had you already been a runner and swimmer?

    • megancrane

      I swam as a kid and was a lifeguard, so I thought it would be easy. It was not. And I have periods of trying to run, but I wouldn’t call myself a runner. I can do a feat here and there, but I’m not consistent. And I had a bike as a kid but had never really cycled as an adult. So in conclusion: it was very hard. Yet I truly believe anyone could do it if I could!

    • Hi Kim! You’re one of Megan/Caitlin’s winners. Either reply to this or send your email address to bobbiwrites@att.net and I’ll have her send it out asap. (Sorry for the delay, it’s been a crazy month…) xo

      • Kim

        Thanks, Bobbi. I sent you an email.

  • Pamby50

    I get that place. So 21 yrs ago I was diagnosed with a neuromuscular disease. While I was in rehab learning to walk, sit in a chair and get dressed, a co-worker brought in this big white paper bag with red hearts on it. I asked what was in the bag and she said romance books. She had no I idea what kind but they were being sold at her library. So my new love of romance was born. They were letting me know everything would turn out alright. Even after everything I read on polymyositos, it was telling me the average life expectancy is 10 years. So I credit good doctors, medication and romance books for still being around. So kudos Megan for finishing the triathlon.

    • megancrane

      I think the triathlon is a metaphor, really, for all these battles we have to fight and all the ways we have to survive. Congratulations on beating the odds!

  • Rose K

    I battle with chronic illness on a daily basis and have always considered romance novels to be a great supplement. There’s nothing like a happy ending to remind someone what they’re fighting for.

    • megancrane

      Absolutely, Rose. What a great way to think about it!

  • Stephanie H

    This post brought me great joy! Thank you for sharing your great stories with us! I just pulled my copy of Protecting the Desert Heir from my TBR mountain. #professionalromancefan

    • megancrane

      Ha! Hooray! Hope you enjoy it–and tell me about it. My TBR mountain is more… a vast mountain range or two or three…

  • Great interview! I really enjoyed Make You Burn 🙂

    • megancrane

      Oh yay! I’m so happy to hear that!

  • Carin Shaughnessy

    I think it’s wonderful that you did the triathlon. I am struggling to go to cross fit 3 days a week, but the high I come away with each time I complete the day’s workout is tremendous. I feel like I can do anything!

    • megancrane

      That feeling is the best thing in the world! I’m so impressed you do Crossfit. It kind of terrifies me!

  • Veronica

    I am on a bit of a biker book phase right now and had never heard of Make You Burn. Already added it to my TBR! Thank you!

    • megancrane

      Oh, hooray! Hope you enjoy it!!

  • Anita H.

    I love how you compare romance to medicine. Reading them sure helps me feel better when I’m in a bad mood. Thanks for sharing! ( Canada)

    • megancrane

      For me they’ve always been the best medicine!

  • kirsten west

    Congratulations on the triathlon! Loved how you said you grew through your heroines. Enjoyed Undone by the Sultan’s Touch.

    • megancrane

      Thanks so much, Kristen!

  • holdenj

    Love the Chrises at the end! Thanks!

    • megancrane

      Chrises forever! Ha!

  • Range Girl

    Thanks for sharing something so personal with us. I especially like that romance inspired a love of yourself.

    -Miranda

    • megancrane

      Thanks so much for reading, Miranda!