Tuesday, March 3

We're Still Sexy...Redux



Okay, I confess that I ran short of time this week--between an editing gig that I need to get done for a client, doing the edits on my own soon-to-be-released novel, going to chemo with pal, Dee, and just life stuff in general, my writing time got squeezed. So I'm recycling a blog from own website. I'm not apologizing for the recycled material because it's still very timely, particularly in the light of my own book coming out. So...yay for Baby Boomer romance and hey, weigh in. I'd love to hear what you think, okay? 

I’m bugged, so get ready. There’s a chance, if you know me, that this may be a familiar rant. It seems that most romance novels are the bailiwick of characters who are younger than 50. If 40 is the new 30 and 50 is the new 40, then how come romance after 50 isn’t sexy?

Well, folks, I’ve got big news–sexy is timeless. Excuse me, but two words, Jeff Bridges. Or how about Sean Connery? Pierce Brosnan? Denzel Washington, anyone? Richard Gere? And as far as sexy women are concerned–want to talk about Susan Sarandon? Sophia Loren? Goldie Hawn? Helen Mirren? Tina Turner? Me? (Sorry, I couldn’t resist!)

Hollywood is beginning to get it. I thoroughly enjoyed the film Something’s Gotta Give—a love story between two people well over age 50. Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson totally rocked that delightful movie. It’s Complicated showed us Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin as grown-ups in a love story that was fun and sexy. Streep and Stanley Tucci recreated the romance between Julia and Paul Child—an older couple madly in love—in Julie and Julia. And hey, how about Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan in Mama Mia? And even Downton Abbey is showing us love between more mature couples--if you didn't see the Season 5 finale, I won't spoil it here, but wowzers!

So what’s up with the world of romance novels? Why is it that if you’re a woman of a certain age, then nobody wants to read about your love life? All of us more mature folks are still falling in love, rediscovering love, renewing love, and by God, we’re still having sex and probably doing it with way more panache. So why are most romance novels about girls in their twenties and early thirties?

A few years ago, Harlequin nailed it with their NEXT imprint, but it didn’t make it, and I’m not sure why. These books are just being released as e-books so try to find them! Maybe we weren’t ready then, but I believe we’re ready now. That’s why I’m writing more mature heroines, like Carrie in ONCE MORE FROM THE TOP and Julie in SEX AND THE WIDOW MILES, and Sophie in THE SUMMER OF SECOND CHANCES (coming in March!). I’m ready for romance with a dash of maturity, two people involved in a relationship without all the nonsense of youth. I want conversations between grown-ups who are over the drama of coming-of-age and meet on the level playing field of self-knowledge. I’m looking for sensual sexy love scenes written with that irresistible combination of humor, passion, and life experience.

Baby Boomers, as writers and readers, let’s put the romance world on notice—we’re here, we’re in love, we’re making love, and our stories are worth telling. Who’s in?

9 comments:

  1. You're right, Nan, it IS still timely--and that's too bad, because we're not making progress fast enough in that particular quarter. Great post.

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    1. Thanks, Liz! We're the demographic with the money, you'd think we'd be the ones to write about, wouldn't you? I love my older heroines--I identify. ;-)

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  2. I'm in Nan! AWESOME post and we need to get the word out that FIFTY is the new THIRTY! I've written a series about middle aged lovers called Out of the Box...and I say we let the world know that we've got some stories to tell!! xxoo <3

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    1. So glad you came by, Jennifer! You bet Fifty is the new Thirty and it's time to let folks know we're here! Hugs, baby!

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  3. Older heroes/heroines are fun to read, in my opinion, and I wish there were more of them...it's just as fun to read about people finding love again as it is to read about finding love for the first time. Great post, Nan!

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    1. I agree completely, Kristi! I love second chance stories of all kinds! Hugs, baby!

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  4. Hi Nan, Super posting and I'll be delving into your books. I've been ranting away for ages about this very thing. Why would baby boomers or even women (and men) in their 40s and 50s want to read more about young love? Mature heroes and heroines have more to say for themselves because they've had more happening in their lives: it's that simple.
    So what's been stopping the baby boomer romances? The publishers who have always refused to take a chance — or to believe that mature romances could sell (or even be believable.) From what I understand, Harlequin simply didn't stand behind their NEXT series.
    Things are changing. I'm pleased as punch that The Wild Rose Press is accepting romances with older characters — they've published two of mine — and, by the way, we need older characters who feel GOOD about themselves and don't give a hoot about wrinkles and grey hair. We need heroines who don’t Botox, dye, lift or panic at the idea of nudity. In my book, Felicity’s Power, my heroine is 63 years old and, yes, she has white hair, and wrinkles. And yes, my 65 year old hero thinks she’s just gorgeous. And in my book, A Swan’s Sweet Song, my 50 year old heroine, Sherry, can’t wait to get out of the music business and stop dyeing her hair orange; she loves her natural brown and silver color. Not only that, she’s not in the least worried about a career change.
    I'll probably be writing about heroes and heroines in their 70s next.
    Thanks for letting me rave some more.
    Hugs.

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    1. So happy you stopped by, J.A.! I totally agree with you about the Boomer romances and I'm just tired of reading love stories about perfect little youngsters! I'm heading to Amazon right now to find your books! Thanks for commenting--we're all in this together, baby!!

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  5. I loved the Next line! And for all the reasons you stated. I like reading about women my age and how they cope with life changes, because it seems the older we get, the quicker life changes--sometimes tragically--and reading fiction, pondering said fiction, can help us imagine how we'd deal with the situation--or think we'd deal with the situation. Does that make sense? Fiction prepares us for the calamities waiting down the road. LOL. That's why YA Dystopian was so popular, The Walking Dead...

    Okay, I think I digressed. Sex in the fifty-plus set = the walking dead??? Where did I go wrong?

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