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
The Joyfully Endless Possibilities of Romance
I have been a voracious reader for as long as I can remember. In fact, one of my earliest memories of elementary school is of eagerly waiting for the Book Bus to arrive every other Friday, because I knew a package full of beautiful brand new books would be placed on my desk when it did.
That love of books turned into a particular love of romance when I picked up my first young adult romance novel as a preteen. Before long, I was dragging my mom to the bookstore as often as possible to find more. I was so enthralled by the genre that I even wrote my first romance novel—a young adult regency romance that has never been published—when I was about thirteen years old.
What can I say? I love romance. I never grow tired of that first look the hero and heroine exchange. You know the one—the Who is this man and why does he make my heart pound? look. The first smile. The first laugh they coax from each other (even from the most dour heroes). The friendship and attraction that grows—sometimes slowly, sometimes in leaps and bounds—and blossoms into a deep, abiding love. That first soul-shattering kiss. And, of course, the happily ever afters.
I admit it has always puzzled me when those outside the romance genre look down their noses at it. Even the great William Shakespeare wrote romance. And why not? Love and romance play an integral role in our society. It’s only natural that we would enjoy reading and writing about it in all of its many facets. And what other genre can boast that it contains ALL of the other fiction genres as sub-genres? You can find everything in romance novels: medievals, regencies, westerns, contemporaries, futuristic, Sci-fi, paranormal, steampunk, fantasy, time travel, mystery, suspense, comedy, drama, action-adventure, thrillers, and more. The possibilities are endless. Anything can happen. And, no matter what I’m in the mood to read, I know I can find it in the romance genre . . . including the happily-ever-afters I enjoy so much.
Which is why I not only love to read romance, but also to write it. While penning my Immortal Guardians books, I get to see that first look, that first kiss, that moment when the hero and heroine realize they would risk anything to be together. And I’m as thrilled by it all as I am when reading books by favorite authors. I laugh with the characters. I cry with the characters. I fight alongside the characters in action scenes that make my fingers fly across the keyboard with excitement. And I have the pleasure of doing the same with my new series The Gifted Ones, only with that one I get to do it in Medieval England. 🙂 Writing is as fun for me as reading . . . particularly since the characters linger in my imagination and continue to conjure scenes that, in some cases, never make it into the books. (I compare those to the bonus features I find on movie DVDs.)
I will always love romance. This is such an exciting time for the genre, both for readers and writers. It has expanded so much in recent years, venturing into new directions that previously were forbidden. I can’t wait to see where it will take us next.
Questions for the Author:
Tell us about a moment in your life when you experienced sheer joy.
I think the moments in my personal life that have brought me sheer joy are the same pivotal moments that so many of us share: falling in love and embracing the wonderful times that follow. So I thought I would share a moment as a writer in which I experienced sheer joy.
Like most authors, it took me many years and several manuscripts to land that first publishing contract. While working toward that goal, I imagined how awesome it would be to get “the call”, or to get a fantastic review from RT Book Reviews, or to have a novella appear in an anthology alongside a story by Alexandra Ivy, one of my favorite authors. All of those dreams eventually came true. And all were as awesome as I had imagined. But what I didn’t imagine was the joy letters from readers would bring me.
Books have provided a much needed escape for me in tough times. There have always been favorite authors to whose books I would turn to take my mind off things when I was stressed or grieving a loss and needed a distraction, something to take my mind off things for just a bit. I could never, in all of my imaginings, have guessed how it would feel to know that I had provided just such a distraction to readers myself. Then a reader wrote me and thanked me. She said she worked in a pediatric hospital and had lost two patients in three days, and that my latest release had provided her with the distraction she needed to process it all. I was so touched I cried. I have always hoped my books would entertain readers and make them laugh and enjoy the ride, but to know that something I wrote had provided the same escape I had sought so often myself . . . that was better than everything that had come before it.
Tell us about a place that brings you joy, or is attached to a memory of joy.
This may sound odd, but the ghost towns and old abandoned mines of Colorado bring me joy. Every summer when I was a little girl—to escape both the heat and the city—my parents would pack up the jeep and head for the mountains. We had such fun exploring creepy old ghost towns and spooky caves and mines that had been abandoned for over a century. The hair-raising rides there on barely discernible jeep trails, watching the “whistle pigs” or groundhogs pop in and out their burrows and complain while we picnicked in sunny vales, and playing in the snow high up on the mountain peaks . . . all was such fun. Memories of those times and those places never fail to wring a smile from me.
Tell us about a sound that brings you joy.
Music brings me joy. It has always been a large part of my life. My grandfather was a musician and played in a big band, rubbing elbows with some of the greatest jazz musicians of his generation. My father was a musician as well and played multiple instruments. And I took eleven years of piano lessons myself. Though writing has left me little or no time to sit at the piano and play until all the stress falls away, I can still reach for my iPod and earbuds and lose myself in a wide variety of beloved music. I was fortunate enough to have been exposed to music of all genres and all eras throughout my youth, so I love everything from classical to jazz to pop rock, classic rock, country and metal. Each brings me joy in its own way.
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?
Oddly, it wasn’t a romance novel. It was Stephen King’s On Writing. I enjoyed it so much, both as a reader and as a writer. His superb storytelling once more comes into play as he recounts his childhood and reveals how he came to love books and writing. I (and many other writers, I suspect) can relate to his struggles as he pursued writing as a career, the rejection letters that only added to stressful times. So it appeals to me on a personal level. And, as a professional, I find the information he provides in the instructional portion of the book to be invaluable. I’m always looking for ways to improve my writing, and like to go back and listen to this book whenever time allows because it inspires me and makes me want to write, write, write.
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)
This is an easy one for me. When I’m not writing, I work in the local independent film industry, which has inspired me to create a Dream Cast for every book I write. Chris Hemsworth has appeared in several now, because I would love to see him play Zach if my Immortal Guardians books are ever made into films.
Dianne is generously giving away an author’s swag pack to one US reader and to one international reader. It includes:
The 1st book (signed) from both of my series:
—Darkness Dawns, Immortal Guardians Book 1
—A Sorceress of His Own, The Gifted Ones Book 1
—An Immortal Guardians swag pack (a Shadows Strike cover flat, 4 postcards, 8 bookmarks, 8 trading cards)
Dianne Duvall is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of the Immortal Guardians paranormal romance series and The Gifted Ones series. Her books have twice been nominated for the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Vampire Romance and are routinely deemed Top Picks by RT Book Reviews, The Romance Reviews, and/or Night Owl Reviews. Reviewers have called Dianne’s books “utterly addictive” (RT Book Reviews), “fast-paced and humorous” (Publishers Weekly), “extraordinary” (Long and Short Reviews), and “wonderfully imaginative” (The Romance Reviews). Dianne loves all things creative and, when she isn’t writing, is active in the independent film industry. She has even appeared on-screen, crawling out of a moonlit grave and wielding a machete like some of the vampires she so loves to create in her books.
For the latest news on upcoming releases, contests, and more, visit dianneduvall.com.
Buy Dianne’s books:
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