Monday, January 06, 2020

OTM 2009 Blog Tour - What is Literary Romance?

CRR Blog Tour – November 2009
Host: Judah Raine, Nov. 1

[This post first appeared at the above site, but it is no longer available there.]

Permalink for Tour Stop Reposts

Hello Jude and thanks so much for not only having me here today, but also for the wonderful tour setup! This is my first book tour and I’m looking forward to a fun month!

With the beginning of the tour, I thought I’d introduce myself and talk a bit about what I do:
“Literary Romance with an Artsy Twist”

Readers who see my tagline often ask what I mean by “literary romance” – a fair question since it’s not an official genre. Literary fiction involves heavy exploration of societal issues, social problems and injustices and morality questions, psychological impact of relationships and culture. It can be quite short as in John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men” or very long such as Leo Tolstoy’s “Anna Karenina.” It often infuses the writer’s thoughts and sometimes rambles beyond the story and into ideas. Romance as a genre has a strict guideline: heavy focus on the relationship between two characters where they meet, are parted in some way for some reason, and come together at the end for a happily ever after. Anything not necessary for the specific plot of the story is not included. It most often runs between 60,000 and 100,000 words (around 250-300 pages).

I combine the two. I write romance. The burgeoning love relationship between two characters is always central. However, I also throw in literary elements to look more deeply at the “why” of each: why they are attracted to each other instead of someone else, why they are hesitant about it if they are, where they came from, their family histories, and how society has affected them and their goals and needs. I’ve covered such topics as parenting and the effects of different styles, grief and how it affects each of us differently, racial issues with a half Native American character who grew up in the 50s and early 60s in a small-minded small town, child abuse, clashes between the wealthy and working classes, and women’s issues. Unlike much literary fiction, however, my stories are not heavy and sullen. They have heavy, sullen moments, but the overall feel is light and hopeful and I love to throw in bits of humor. The end, as in romance fiction, is always upbeat. I refuse to leave a reader on a down note.

Within my stories, you will always find the arts. I was raised in a highly artistic family and it’s embedded in my nature. So far, I have novel characters who are dancers, singers, painters, landscape designers, and musicians. A short story series in progress deals with a sculptor and a gardener who used to be an architect. Another revolves around a songwriter with a family-disrupting mental illness. I’m music obsessed and it fills my stories, even those that don’t revolve around music. You’re likely to find some of my own fave singers and bands mentioned in each. And you’ll find music industry issues, such as manipulation of artists by big recording companies and marketing methods that may or may not be quite truthful. Did you know it’s not unheard of to change an artist’s age for marketing purposes? I have that issue coming up in a future book, which will actually help my singer disguise her identity.

A bit about my background that leads me to write the kind of stories I write: along with an artsy family and many art and music courses, I have worked for a musician helping with online promotion, have networked with musicians outside my family, and have a psychology degree. Let me note I am not a psychologist or counselor, at least not yet. ;-) I do work for a sandplay therapy network. And I have always studied human nature and have paid attention to nuances of personalities. This has been great help in making my characters very deep and real.

So, there you have the basics. Questions? Leave them in the comments and I’ll get back with you! Be sure to check my blog this month, also, for Off The Moon related interviews. [] The first one is up today and features Vicki Blankenship, indie singer/songwriter and president of Vicki was gracious enough to allow use of lyrics for one of her songs from her newest album at the end of Off The Moon as the music epilogue. I have one in each of my books, so far, always by indie artists.

Find my website for more info:

Here’s the blurb for the book I’ll focus on this month on tour, release date November 27th!

Off The Moon
LK Hunsaker

"Riveting" Ryan Reynauld is immersed in a world of music, parties, and temporary companionship. Having risen to the top of the pop charts, his biggest concern is objecting to the way his music is produced. That is, until he finds a young woman standing on a window ledge. Against the advice of family and friends, and through media attacks and fan protests, Ryan determines to care for her himself, making a promise that threatens to destroy his career.

Convincing the skittish girl she can learn to trust again comes with a steep price. Sometimes the path to recovery begins by allowing your world to implode.
Thanks again, Jude!

Next up: Artistic Vision and Creative Doubt with Jane Richardson, Nov. 3

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