What Romance Writing Isn’t

It’s not mommy porn. Anyone who’s ever seen a porno–and let’s face most people over the age of 18 have at least seen some clip somewhere of it, even if it was by accident when some hacker sent you to the wrong website–but I digress.

Anyone who’s ever seen a porno knows there are two key things missing. First, a plot. Unless the plot is to get as many people doing each other in as many freaky ways as possible. Second, is a romance. In porn, sex is for the sake of sex. No romance. No development of feelings and character arcs.

Why do I bring this up? Because lately, I’ve seen multiple people tweet or post about “mommy porn.” And yesterday, a news clip ran on network television and on the internet about an erotica author.Slide1

At first glance, the video news clip appeared to be something positive. But if you paid attention to the reporter, he kept his tone mocking. I stopped counting how many times he used the words “mommy porn” or “porn” to describe the author’s work. He even had the author read excerpts from one of her books then visually reacted to it as if she’d slapped him when she used words like cock. (Like he’d never heard the word before.)

The author being interviewed was a woman who’d written 104 books for Ellora’s Cave. That’s pretty impressive. She’d worked hard and is proud of the work she’d done. And she should be. Not everyone can write a book. And even less manage to get one published let alone 104.

The author herself pointed out the erotic romances she pens contain an essential element, romance. What she didn’t specifically point out was that her stories also have a plot. But she did show how the title of her story reflected the plot and characters.

But that didn’t stop the interviewer from calling it porn.

And let me point out, that calling it mommy porn, tends to put that label on all romance writers. It makes writers want to defend themselves for giving most readers what they want…a good love story.

Now might be a good time to point out that romance dominates 56% of the market for books purchased in the USA.

Evolve people. Not all romances are the same. Some are inspirational, some are medical, some are suspense, some are Americana, some are paranormal, some are erotic, some are sci-fi, some are historical but all contain a romance and either a happily-ever-after or a happily-for-now.

But none are porn. They’re romances. There might be sex scenes in them, but have you seen movies lately? Twilight had it too. A pretty graphic one in the second-to-last movie but it wasn’t porn. It was part of the romance.

So why call romances writers the authors of mommy porn?

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