Sunday, February 22, 2015

Aloha to the Library of Congress - What is Love? Romance in the Digital Age (part 2)

Library of Congress in 1898
Public Domain (link)

Continuing my recap of the romance conference at the Library of Conference, Panel 2 featured What to the Science and History of Love Reveal?   But I skipped it to view the documentary Love Between the Covers (link)

Romance fiction is a female-powered engine of commerce, a multi-billion dollar business, and a tech-savvy global sisterhood. Women who write and think about relationships turn out to be amazing community builders. In Love Between the Covers, we enter one of the few places where women are always center stage, where female characters always win, where justice prevails in every book, and where the broad spectrum of desires of women from all backgrounds are not feared, but explored unapologetically.

For three years, we follow the lives of five published romance authors and one unpublished newbie as they build their businesses, find and lose loved ones, cope with a tsunami of change in publishing, and earn a living doing what they love—while empowering others to do the same.

Authors include Eloisa James, Len Barot, Beverly Jenkins, Joanne Lockyer, and writing team Susan Donovan and Celeste Bradley.  The documentary also interviewed other writers, academics, and fans ... here are my notes from the interviews:

Romance books offer readers a fantasy; Arnold is never killed at the end of his movies yet romance books are criticized for their HEA.

Romance is not solitary.

Love conquered all; hero and heroine made the journey together.

Jane Austen dominated early romance, challenging the norm of the time that gentry did not marry for love.

Romance demonstrates "nothing that happens between us can be wrong". 

What is your cup of tea?  Some one (in romance) is serving what you like.

The documentary also filmed during the RWA National Conference in Anaheim in 2012 - I recognized the hotel.  The film captured several "aspiring" authors describing their pitches.  One such author was a perky blond and an impeccable dresser.   She has since published three historical novels in her series, Trick of the Ton, with Sourcebooks.  The author is Elizabeth Michels!

The documentary is worth a look at this link.

If you were filmed for this documentary, how you would answer why you read romance?  One randomly selected commenter wins a book choice from my convention stash. Comments are open through Saturday, February 28, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, March 1.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City 

Check out Sarah Wendell's storified tweets from the conference at this link.

Books from the RWA Conference in 2012


  1. Easy Peasy for the heas and to escape for awhile from everyday problems.

  2. I think it's always that hope that real life will have the HEA and I just love to read - the romance is like the icing on the cake!

  3. I read to escape and to be entertained.

  4. Thank you for the link. I watched a few of the clips, but will have to come back later to see the rest. It is a good idea for a project and an interesting approach. I can understand why romance hasn't been taken seriously for too long. Part of it is ignorance on the part of many. It is very much along the lines of "judging a book by its cover." You'll have to admit the bodice ripper style covers can be a bit of a distraction. However, if they took the time to read what is between those covers, they would find books that are very much worth reading. The more people find out about authors and their work, the more it will be appreciated.

  5. I would have to say for the warm fuzzies & the HEA.

  6. I would have to say for the warm fuzzies & the HEA.

  7. I like to read as an escape from the stress of everyday life.

  8. HEA and reading to escape from the real world :)

  9. I read romance stories because they take me away to another place and make me happy - that's especially nice during this very long and cold winter!

  10. Thanks for sharing that link! What a fun documentary! The romance community is amazing and it is so much fun to attend cons and share that love of romance books. Everyone needs some happy in life.

  11. I love that feeling of falling in love with the characters & rooting for their HEA. I love the excitement and that feeling of hope... Makes me dream, swoon and just feel really really good.

  12. If I was ever interviewed as to why I read romance, the answer would be simple: I read for the happily ever after! Thank you for the lovely post!

  13. I too love the heas.
    Karen T.