Somewhere, in one of my many books on writing novels, I read that a writer emulates the authors they read the most often. That whatever we are reading at that moment subconsciously makes it onto the page of whatever it is we’re writing. I’ve definitely noticed that phenomenon in my own work.
I read romances across the board – straight or gay, I don’t care. What I do care about is the characters and the plot. I want to read deep characters. Individuals who are wounded in some way whether physical, emotional, psychological, and are struggling with inner demons. I also want to read complex plots. Everyday life is not simple, easy, or pretty. There are a million little things that are happening in one person’s world and when two people meet and fall in love, those worlds can collide in unexpected ways. That’s what I love to read.
I get so much more satisfaction when I write that kind of story. I feel happiest, more fulfilled and accomplished, when my reader tells me they want the bad guy I created to get what’s coming to him. When I can make them angry enough at him that when the good guy does something evil, the reader cheers him on. I love it when I succeed at writing complex characters just trying to survive their own personal hells. I enjoy watching them meet, trip over each other’s plot lines, get tangled up in one another’s worlds, and fall in love. Because if I can love them, get engrossed by their story, then my reader will, too. That’s why I write, why I create, and why profiting from doing so isn’t important.