Romance – The Essence of Life
Romance–that magical combination of feeling and showing, is the essence of life. It’s that impulse, driven by deep, heartfelt sentiment, to make a positive, loving demonstration of your regard for a person.
As a romance writer, of course I’m a fan of the grand gestures of romance–the walks on the beach, shouting one’s love from the rooftops, proposal on bended knee, the whisking-away to a far-off place, the glittering jewels, the frequent, always-orgasmic sex on a bed of dreams…But the little things matter, too. The small gesture that says you value your loved one. Maybe he brings you a perfectly-crafted espresso in the morning, or takes your hand as you’re walking onto the ferry, buys you something you didn’t know you needed, like a push button umbrella or an aebleskiver pan.
Romance is about being present in the moment with your loved one, telling him he’s valued in ways big and small. It’s about giving someone your whole attention, and making time in your life for the things that matter to both of you. Romance can show your loved one that he’s the very center of your world, but it’s more than a feeling or gesture. It’s reaching out from the heart to embrace his very self.
In book after book that I write, and have been writing since I sold TEXAS WILDFLOWER to a publisher in 1986, to my latest reissue, JUST BREATHE, the romance is a journey of discovery–mutual discovery. At its essence, and the conclusion of every good love story, is the heart-deep knowing that you have a home with this person, no matter where you go.
I’d love for readers to discover the funny, heartfelt romantic comedies of Sheila Roberts. Her books are adorable. I love them.
Also the warm and fuzzy books of Elsa Watson, whose DOG DAYS kept me chuckling page after page.
Questions for Susan:
What is the craziest or ugliest object in your house, and why do you keep it?
Lenny, my tiny rescued chihuahua. He’s not ugly but he’s crazy. He barks at ghosts, he zooms around the yard and stands under the tall trees waiting for the eagles to drop scraps on the ground, he rides with me on the stand-up paddleboard. He’s the most entertaining dog I’ve ever had. You can see a picture of Lenny here.
If there was a movie made about your life, what would it be called? (And just for fun, who would play you?)
I would like to be played by someone younger, thinner and more beautiful. Charlize Theron, okay? It could be called A WORK IN PROGRESS, because that’s what I am.
What is the best non-monetary gift you ever received?
My husband Jerry, a clothing designer, designed and made a couture wedding dress for me. It’s awesome. He’s awesome. There’s a picture and a nice writeup on the wedding here on the HEA blog.
If you had to pick one romantic scene or couple to recommend to a first-time reader of YOUR books, which would it be? (Any picks for romance novels in general?)
Oh, probably the waterfall scene in THE CHARM SCHOOL. Ryan and Isadora in a romantic historical adventure. I still get feedback from readers on that one.
Susan is generously donating one copy of the Apple Ochard to international visitors (enter here) and two copies for for U.S. readers. For domestic entries, either leave a comment here or enter the weekly drawing on the contest page. Or both. (Only one entry per commenter per post, though – multiple comments on one essay does not give you more chances.) Comment entries must be posted by midnight EST Aug 7 to be eligible, though winners will be announced the following week.
Susan Wiggs’s life is all about family, friends…and fiction. She lives at the water’s edge on a Puget Sound island and finds inspiration in the rhythm of the seasons, and in emotional dramas of everyday life. She’s been featured in the national media, including NPR’s Talk of the Nation, and is a popular speaker locally and nationally.
A #1 New York Times bestselling author, she has received three RITA Awards and numerous starred reviews from Publishers Weekly. Her novels have been translated into more than two dozen languages. Susan is a former teacher, a Harvard graduate, and a passionate supporter of libraries and literacy. She loves hiking, biking, yoga and skiing, yet her favorite form of exercise is curling up with a good book. Please visit her at www.SusanWiggs.com.
Buy Susan’s books on Amazon.