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How I Fell into Romance

Lorelei Holding Stack of books

Hi there! Lorelei here, I’m the creative director of Lorelei’s Lit Lair! Welcome to my new followers. I’d love to know how you fell into romance, but I’ll share my experience first. I’m also including some of my favorite books from when I began reading romance.

Many of you probably discovered romance in your teens through your mom’s stash of romance novels . I instead discovered romance through my daughter in 2007, and purely by accident. It started when she wanted to read the Twilight Series. Incredulous as to what drew people to read such tales, I went to the first page, just to check it out and to see what all the commotion was about.

Stephenie Meyer writes Midnight Sun (Edward’s POV)

Seven days later, I read all four books and it was like a switch in me was flipped ON. I went to my library and started reading women’s fiction, mysteries, but I truly found my match in romance! Why? Because I found romances brought joy, laughter and love to my heart. I was inspired by how heroes and heroines overcame obstacles, plus so many other positive traits and for the happy endings!

Reading romances made me realize that we’re not alone in certain experiences in our lives. Also, I think subconsciously certain events inspire us to become a better person, building a sense of community, offering a helping hand to our seniors, friends and family.

A great series by Robyn Carr! 

We also learn a great deal of respect and appreciation for others, as well as the brave servicemen and women who protect us each day. Romance authors take us back in time, to different worlds or right here in the present evoking emotions with such ease that sometimes for a few hours we forget that what’s happening in the story isn’t real. We go through highs and lows with the characters, cheering them on or shedding tears of laughter, joy or sorrow with them. In the end, love always prevails.

Love Lisa Kleypas!

You may enjoy the sweet kind of romance novels, with kisses that melt your heart or those where passions ignite the pages in flames. It’s not a one-size-fits -all kind of genre. I discovered quickly the difference when I went from the Twilight Saga to books by Nora Roberts, Sandra Brown, and Lisa Kleypas just to name a few. Yes, there’s drama, action, suspense and happily ever afters, yet all very different in the love department. While I now know where my comfort zone lies, it depends what I’m in the mood for, whether it be for historicals, contemporaries, YA, mysteries, paranormals or military romances. So, whether you prefer reading novels that are one, ten or fifty shades of romance, there’s a book for everyone.

I adore Prince Joe, Navy SEAL by Suzanne Brockmann

Something amazing happened on my quest to find books in my comfort zone. I felt like Goldilocks and the three bears. I read and read in search of my “just right” authors. I enjoyed all of Suzanne Brockmann’s books. Prince Joe will forever remain a favorite, as well as Robyn Carr’s Virgin River. But in 2010 I discovered one particular author and did something I’d never done before. I wrote my first fan mail. Her books had all the elements I was looking for in a story, and I felt the need to let her know. Honestly, I thought I’d get a response in a month or maybe never. To my surprise she replied the next day! I remember replying “ OMG!” and proclaimed to be her BFF- Biggest Fan Forever.

I was Hooked on Higgins with Catch Of The Day! 

This author was Kristan Higgins. She was so nice and down to earth, just like her stories. She invited me to follow her on Facebook. That’s when her daily posts and recommendations opened my eyes to the world of romance writers. I discovered what a supportive, generous and talented community this is. It inspired me to create Lorelei’s Lit Lair on Facebook and other social media spots to share happiness with others.

Marie Bostwick writes Fiction with Heart

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Authors are real women, like you and me. Yes, that’s right.  They all have different personalities, hobbies and  interests. Some are shy, others are outgoing. Many are moms with kids and have pets. Some are even grandparents. They also have good days and bad days. Some enjoy baking, gardening, sewing, running, boxing, etc. Some are afraid of hummingbirds, while others are fascinated with penguins. I’ve noticed most love wine and chocolate. I mention this because we often  forget authors are real people, like us. I’ve met authors who have day jobs and still find time to write amazing stories. Social media has been a wonderful resource to learn more about  favorite authors.

I’m a secondary character in the Blue Heron series! Really! 

I have to share this story with you. One time I met a lady at one of those Mall Kiosks. I told her about so many wonderful authors and books that I’d read and started giving her recommendations, but then she said,Just tell me which one is the best and I’ll read that one.You know the deer in the headlights stare? No one had ever asked me that question before! After standing there speechless for a few seconds, it came to me. I said to her, “The best author or book is the one that makes you happy”. It’s true!

One of my oldies Hockey Romance favorites! 

Without a doubt, I can truly say that the anecdotes I share, the causes I’ve supported, the prizes I’ve won, the joy and laughter that fill my days and most especially the friendships I’ve made with readers and authors around the world, would never have been possible if I hadn’t received Kristan Higgins’ reply. It has changed my life in a positive way, brightening my days, my little escape of this busy and hectic life.

A Christmas favorite! 

I also know with certainty had I written first to any of the Sarah’s, Virginia’s, Robyn’s, Nancy’s, Jennifer’s, Michelle’s, etc, that I’ve discovered throughout the years, I would have received just as an enthusiastic reply as Kristan’s, because that’s how the Romance writing community is. Authors LOVE hearing from readers!


Other Related Posts:

On Meeting Kristan Higgins, Authors and Romance, Wine & Chocolate ’18

If you missed my post about when I finally got to meet Kristan Higgins in person after 7 years  click here.


Now it’s your turn! 

I’d love to know any of the following:

Do you read romance? If not, what do you enjoy reading?
How or when did you fall into Romance?
Do you remember who was your gateway author?
Have you connected or written to an author lately?
(*This article was originally posted on Sept 21, 2018. It was first written in a feature for Read A Romance Month, 2015 and updated for the blog.)

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10 responses to “How I Fell into Romance

  1. I believe it has been over 15 years ago since I fell into romance novels. Those of us, of a certain age, remember BAM! Books-A-Million… well… I was browsing the bargain buys section and came across The Perfect Lover by Stephanie Laurens. I opened it to a random page and read a couple pages and was hooked!I had to buy it even though I wasn't in a position to spend a lot of money back in those days, but I couldn't pass up a good book AND a good deal! I continued to read and enjoy her other books.I didn't realize until then that there were sub-genres of romance novels. I enjoyed reading different styles at different heat levels over the years. I'm currently reading romantic suspense, paranormal romance and rom-coms.

  2. Finding you has been one of the biggest joys, Debbie! You've been a wonderful source in my romance journey. Hope we meet in the near future!

  3. Great title falling into romance how appropriate too. Hmmm I actually fell into reading and eventually found romance because I'm an equal opportunity reader I enjoy all genres but when I want something to warm my heart I always turn to romance. There is not one author who turned me on to romance I think it was my first paying review gig with RT Magazine (can't believe they're gone) when I realized I loved romance. I've been happy to share your journey Lorelei!

  4. I started reading romance in middle school – some sort of sappy, clean teen romance. My mom wasn't a reader so I discovered all of these books on my own at the library. Then came the bodice rippers of the 70s and I was hooked. I don't remember my first but there were books by Rosemary Rodgers, Katherine Woodiwiss, Beatrice Small, Carolyn Wright, Johanna Lindsey, and so on. I didn't only read romance as I also read many of the classics. After getting married and having my babies in the 80s reading was pushed aside and not rediscovered until the 90s. That was when I found Jennifer Crusie and contemporary romance. I soon learned how to follow authors and their blogs, before facebook. Carly Phillips, Susan Andersen, Kate Angell, Robyn Carr, and again many more. Then I found Kristan Higgins and had to read all 2 of her previous books. She took me to Jill Shalvis and again binge read. The library found me even more authors and then authors introduced me to other and now I read so many different authors that I no longer have time to re-read my favorites. The new thing in my life has been meeting so many of favorite authors. I've met a number of my idols so far but look forward to meeting a few more.

    • My family wasn’t big on reading, but I took it upon myself to get my kids to read from an early age, but neglected to read for my own pleasure. All I read was children’s books, books on self help, how to teach children, things like that. I also love meeting authors! It’s so much fun, and I enjoy introducing them to others, and at my events. Thanks for sharing, Eileen!

  5. I used to read romance in my teens, mostly Judy Blume. After college, I used to read all types of books, but none that I really remember. Then, just like you, in 2008, my oldest daughter was devouring the Twilight books so on Halloween night I sat and read the first book while passing out candy and became hooked. I read all 4 books in one week. From there I went to library and found Carly Phillips and fell in love with the Chandler Brothers and every other book she released up until then. Next was Susan Elizabeth Phillips….read everyone! After that I opened up to so many wonderful authors : Sabrina Jeffries, Jill Shalvis, Roxanne St. Claire, Sawyer Bennett, Donna Kauffman….etc. I probably read over 100 books a year and just love it!My dream is to meet Carly Phillips some day in person and I sure hope that I get that chance!

    • I went through the romance shelves in alphabetical order, skipped sometimes, but I also got to SEP and love her books too, Same for Carly Phillips. I saw her briefly at RWA17, but didn’t get a chance to say hi and get a picture. I hope some day you’ll get to meet her in person, at a conference if it gets to your state. Don’t give up! It took me 7 years to meet Kristan, and it happened. Authors are the kindest people in the world. That’s why we love this community.

  6. I have no idea what was my first. I have been reading them forever. Back when I read all kinds of books. Because I had the time. Now, I really am a romance only reader. Mostly because of time. Romance is my favorite and there isn't enough time to read the ones I want to read the most. Much less others I would take a chance on. I am a slow reader. So I am very particular what books I pick up. I have come to love audio books as well. And typically, I have one audio and one book book going at any time. But I am picky. Only ones that I am pretty sure I will love. Kristan Higgins is on my list. Robyn Carr is as well. I read a lot of Shana Galen. And I have recently fallen for Brenda Novak with her Evelyn Talbot series. I always like Jill Shalvis. Lori Foster is a wonderful writer. As well as Julia Quinn. Eloisa James is always great to read. I am in her Wilde series right now. Mary Balogh is the author of my all time favorite historical romance, the Slightly series of the Bedwyns. I have reread it a number of times and love it just a little better every time. A wonderful friend of mine, Gayle, got my favorite book of the series signed by Mary Balogh for me. A super thrilling treasure. And I wasn't even the one to meet her. haha Oh yes, romance reading is a passion for me. Loved your post Lorelei!

    • Thanks for sharing, Lisa! I’m a multi reader like you! I’ll have an audiobook, ebook and print for any moment I can enjoy them. I also stick to romance and some women’s fiction but it always have to have a romantic thread in it or at least a happy for now ending. I love the authors you mentioned and I’m thri to have a blog where I can share some of my favorites with the world.

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