There’s enough room for everybody and we’re all not the same.
The above statement could apply to every facet of life but I’m writing specifically about authors — in particular, romance writers. I’ve read critics’ complaints that the genre is overcrowded and overrun with self-published authors muddying the genre with crappy writing and story lines. I say ‘poo on you’ for trash talking the number one selling genre.
In my family alone there are at least four authors. Each of us write a different variation of romance. One writes sugary sweet romance that always delivers a happy ending. The other writes scintillating romance that borders on erotica. Another of us writes romance that borders on the side literary genius. And I write romance that’s reminiscent of prime time soap operas.
And that variation is just in my family. Imagine the pool of authors out there writing their stories, pouring their hearts and imaginations into their characters, plots, settings, and scenes — all of varying styles. In other words, there’s something for everybody.
Readers aren’t stuck with Harlequin romances (which, there’s nothing wrong with their romances). Readers get to choose what type of romance they want to read. They can experience interracial/multicultural romances or a hero who isn’t always rich. Or perhaps a female who isn’t looking to be rescued.
They get to enjoy romances that look more like their reality or, on the other hand, take them away from their reality.
We all don’t write alike. We all don’t tell the same story the same way. And there’s plenty of room for all of us.
50 Shades of Grey (and it’s follow-ups) got a bad rap from critics and the general public. But somebody had to be reading it. Somebody was buying it. It was a NYT bestseller. It had people all over the country talking about it. Now, there’s a movie based on it. Is E. L. James a literary genius? Probably not. But from the parts that I’ve read (and I haven’t read much, yet), it’s not the gnarled piece of literature critics say it is. It actually appeals to me. It’s easy to read. And it makes its point.
Romance is so subjective that no matter how many writers that enter the field, there’s plenty of room to go around. It just means that very few of us will become multimillionaires. But you can say that about any genre.