Lori Wilde – The Sustaining Joy of Romance

It’s Read-A-Romance Month.


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

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A Love Affair With Romance

My love affair with romance novels began when I was teenager, and my father worked for BeHomeForChristmasThe Fort Worth Star Telegram. Back in those days, all local newspapers had a book review section, and each week publishers would send their latest releases to newspapers for reviews.

Unhappily for the authors, but luckily for me, the Star Telegram reviewer refused to read romance novels, And he would leave a stack of books on the floor outside his office for anyone who wanted them.

My dad worked the 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. shift, and every Friday night, he’d swing by the reviewer’s office, pick up an armload of books, and bring them home to me.

Saturday mornings around our house was like Christmas for me. I’d get up at dawn to find a plethora of books spread across the kitchen table, excited to have reading material for the week. I’d grab some breakfast, head to my favorite tree on the farm for a day of blissful RulesOfGame mm c-2reading. 

At the time, gothic romances were the rage and I gobbled up Mary Stewart, Phyllis Whitney, Victoria Holt, Madeleine Brent, Anya Seton, and I even remember reading Anne Stewart’s first novel, Barrett’s Hill.

My father worked at The Star Telegram for five years, and in that time I accumulated over 2000 books.  When I went off to college, I sold the books to a used bookstore and pocketed five hundred dollars in cash. Oh, those were the days! When used bookstores paid 10% of the cover price for books you traded in.

I have to thank that reviewer for being too snooty to read romance. Because of him, I got one helluva education in how to write, and enjoyed countless hours of love, romance, and adventure. And oh yeah, made enough to pay for my first semester of college.

Those gothics sustained me like a hot fire on a cold night, and fueled my passion for BackInGame_RVSD_CVRstorytelling.  They laid the foundation for my career, and by continuing in the romance genre, I stand on the shoulders of the giants that came before me.

What an honor and privilege it’s been for me to spend my life reading, and writing romance.

Questions for the Author:

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

It would have to be the day I sold my first book. I’d been working so long and hard, that I was almost to the point where I feared it would never happen. It happened at 9:30 a.m. on January 18th, 1994, after eleven years of writing. Joyous, I celebrated by shooting off fireworks I’d saved from New Years’ Day at midnight, and accidentally caught a field on fire and had to call the volunteer fire department to put it out.

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

Maui! My husband and I got married there and I love the ocean, the sunsets, the smell of plumeria, the gorgeous colorful flowers, the waterfalls, the windy road to Hana. I love the people who smile so readily, and are so welcoming. I love the temperate climate and the beach and the volcanoes and…well shoot, I want to go book airfare.

Tell us about a sound that brings you joy.

My favorite sound was my father as he wrote songs. He’d go around the house singing as he tried out lyrics. He eventually had a song produced that hit #26 on the country Billboard charts back in the 60’s.

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?

Lonesome Dove. It’s the quintessential story about Texas cattle drives, by one of Texas’ best writers—Larry McMurtry. I loved how long the book was, as the story swept me back to the rough and tumble west.

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)

Christopher Reeve as Superman. He was absolutely gorgeous. (Be sure to see the sweet Christopher Reeve story on Lorelei’s post. ~Bobbi)

Lori is generously giving away will give 5 ebook copies each of RULES OF THE GAME and BACK IN THE GAME to five readers, (giveaway open to international readers, provided winner can receive ebooks from Amazon US).

002loriwildeNew York Times and USA Today best selling author, Lori Wilde has sold seventy-eight works of fiction to four major New York Publishing houses. She holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Texas Christian University and a certificate in forensic nursing from Kaplan University. She is a member of the Internal Association of Forensic Nurses.

Her first NYT bestseller, the third book in her Twilight, Texas series, The First Love Cookie Club has been optioned for a television movie. The town of Granbury, Texas, upon which her fictional town of Twilight, Texas is loosely based, honors Lori with an annual Twilight, Texas weekend each Christmas season. twilighttexas.com

 A popular writing instructor, Lori is a two time RITA finalist and has four times been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. She’s won the Colorado Award of Excellence, the Wisconsin Write Touch Award, The Golden Quill, the Lories, and The More than Magic. Her books have been translated into 26 languages and excerpted in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Complete Woman, and Quick and Simple magazines. She lives in Texas with her husband, Bill, and her New American Shepherds, Sassy and Cookie.

LoriWilde.com      |     Facebook     |     Twitter

Buy Lori’s books:

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

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  • Marissa Yip-Young

    First books are all about toils to get publish

    • Lori Wilde


  • I loved hearing how your Dad got you books from the paper! So cool to have an endless supply! 🙂

    • Lori Wilde

      It was.

  • Jennifer C

    Your story about your first book being published was definitely unforgettable. 🙂 I enjoyed reading your essay!

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you, Jennifer C.

  • I love how your dad was responsible for your introduction to romance. I have my dad to thank for that too!

    • Lori Wilde

      Us daddy girls are so fortunate!

  • mariannewestrich

    My dad formed my love of romance by forming my idea of a good man, good husband and good father. I see aspects of him in every hero of the books I enjoy! What song did your father have out in the 60s?

    • Lori Wilde

      Aren’t we lucky to have such awesome dads?

  • Melissa Cowling Terry

    That is so neat that you were able to read all those wonderful books because of a snotty reviewer. 🙂

    • Lori Wilde

      His loss!

  • Diana Michelle Tidlund

    Lori Wilde is one of my top 5 favorite authors…amazing author…you can’t go wrong reading one of her books!

    • Lori Wilde

      Diana, you are so sweet! Thank you so much.

  • LSUReader

    I enjoyed your post. The image of your father gathering an armload of romance books for you is just perfect. Lucky you!

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you!

  • Bernadette

    I love your books, you always deliver a good story! And this post was so endearing! I’ve been a reader of yours for a long time and I always look forward to what you write next!

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you, Bernadette. How kind of you to say so.

  • Patty Vasquez

    I think my dad’s reaction to getting romance books for me might have been similar to his reaction to buying feminine hygiene products: horror! Although he certainly honored my need to read them and my weekly trips to the library. My list of early romance authors is remarkably similar to yours. Thank you for your heartfelt essay!

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you. I was honored when Bobbi asked me to participate.

  • Thanks to that obnoxious reviewer! Now we have an amazing author. 😀

    • Lori Wilde


  • Linda Henderson

    Your Stardust Texas books look amazing. I’ll definitely be looking for them. I’ve been reading your books for quite a while now and I always enjoy them.

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you so much, Linda!

  • Jami B.

    I’ve been reading Lori Wilde books for a long time… Just read Back in the Game while on vacation… now just need Rules of the Game… Please and thanks for the chance!

    • Lori Wilde

      You are so welcome for the chance to win.

  • Kareni

    Oops on lighting that field on fire! And, oh for the days when $500 would pay for a semester of college. I enjoyed the Library LOVE posts on your facebook page, Ms. Wilde; I like to visit libraries whenever we go on a vacation. Happy writing!

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you so much, Kareni. My entire year of LVN school (licensed vocational nurse, went there before getting my RN) cost $80 back in the mid-70s.

      • Kareni

        Inflation has truly struck since the mid-70s. Now you’d likely pay more than $80 for one textbook!

  • Kim

    Things have changed so much in the publishing industry. Used book stores have closed just like many of the chain book stores.

    • Lori Wilde

      I know. So sad. Everything has shifted!

  • Debbie Fuller

    Thank you so much for posting and contributing to this site. I love coming here to get ideas for new books, to me, to read.

    • Lori Wilde

      Isn’t this a wonderful site? I love Bobbi.

  • Quinn Fforde

    That was a great story! That reviewer sure missed out.

    • Lori Wilde

      He did!

  • Sharlene Wegner

    Hi Lori – I love your story & I would also be in Heaven having all of those romance books for free! I am a huge fan of yours, too! Does your father have any music that we could listen to online?

    • Lori Wilde

      Sharlene, the song he hit Billboard with was called The Cockfight by Archie Campbell who was a regular on the old TV show HeeHaw.

      • Sharlene Wegner

        I used to watch that show & I remember Archie!

  • May

    Oh… my… I am jealous! I would love to know someone who leaves books in the office! 🙂

    • Lori Wilde

      Yep. I was fortunate.

  • Pamby50

    You had your own built in library. Love that you set the field on fire. No one will ever forget that. Love your books.

    • Lori Wilde

      It was scary setting the field on fire, but makes for a lively “first sale” story!

  • Jerry Marlatt Pierson

    What a good opportunity to get free books. Thank you for your giveaway and a chance to win.

    • Lori Wilde

      You are so welcome.

  • cheryl c.

    I have gotten a lot of joy from reading your books, Lori. I recently read Back in the Game, so now I am looking forward to Rules of the Game.

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you, Cheryl.

  • Julie Ford

    Love your books.

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you so much!

  • Diane Blaser

    Setting things on fire is quite the way to celebrate! I love your books Lori; I’m so glad you stuck it out for 11 years until you hit gold!

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you!

  • Kathryn Trask

    I love the story of your Dad bringing home all those romance books. What bliss!

    • Lori Wilde

      It was like Christmas morning every Saturday.

  • Martha B

    How fun to discover you also read Victoria Holt, Mary Stewart, Phyllis Whitney, etc. I’m glad your Dad broght home books giving you hours of reading pleasure.

    • Lori Wilde

      He’s a great dad. I’ve been so blessed.

  • Dawn Anderson

    Your memories of Maui brought some back for me, as well. I really enjoy reading your books.

    • Lori Wilde

      Thank you so much!

  • Joan Varner

    It’s not often that you hear about a father fostering his daughter love of romance books. Thanks for sharing your story.

  • Debbie_K

    Love Read-a-romance month

  • Erin F

    what a fun reading childhood!! Sounds like such a fun intro to romance 🙂 thanks for sharing!

  • Carol Luciano

    How awesome to get all those unwanted Romance books. Like they say, his loss your gain. 🙂 Always enjoy reading your books Lori. Thanks for the post and the giveaway chance.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  • Glenda

    His loss your gain! Your dad was wonderful to think of bringing the books home to you!

  • Molly

    I love your books and I can’t wait for your next book.

  • Sharon Forbes

    Wow! What a great experience you got to have, being able to read all those romances that that book reviewer didn’t want, talk about pure enjoyment and a great education! That surely helped spawn your imagination, no wonder you are such a great writer!! Thanks for all the great reads!

  • marypreston

    I’d be claiming an armload of books too.

  • K Davis

    I love Maui too. It would be a beautiful place to get married. 🙂

  • Michele Hayes

    I love finding authors that are new to me. Thanks for the

  • Rhi

    I love Lonesome Dove. It was one of those books that my parents read and then I read after them. Can still remember the hardcover copy we had.

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    I have only read one or two of your books but look forward to reading more. I loved your story of how your dad brought home books every Friday night/Saturday morning – but especially how much money you made selling them. Back in my day that would have paid for two semesters of college. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  • Texas Book Lover

    WOW! Lucky you to have such a great dad to bring you all those book! I’d be in heaven!

  • Mary McCoy

    What a lucky kid and what a great dad! I love Twilight, Texas!

  • Marcy Shuler

    Your dad was so nice! I can imagine how Saturday mornings were like Christmas every week. Such a sweet memory!

  • kirsten west

    What a great way of discovering romance!

  • Emily Baucom

    Wow that sounds like a great dad, love your books.

  • Bernadette Long

    I love the story about your romance books!

  • Rochelle

    Love your books Lori! And what a great story about all the books you gathered from your Dad’s work – what a treat.

  • Sue G.

    That is so fun that your dad brought you home books to read!

  • Sheila M

    Your story about selling your first book made me laugh.

  • Anita H.

    We should definitely thank that snooty reviewer for giving you your start to reading and writing romance! And having over 2000 books sounds like heaven to me! 😀

  • Deana Dick

    I am a big fan of your books. When I hear that you have a new book, I rush to the store to buy it. Thank you for writing books that keep me reading late into the night, because I can’t put it down.

  • Popping by to show Lori some love! *waves*