Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Tried and True Topics ~ And a Winner!


In historical romance, there are some story lines that seem to be perennial favorites. There are certain subjects that historical romance readers like.

Examples include:


  1. Mail Order Brides
  2. Marriages of Convenience
  3. Inheritance stories
  4. Cowboys marrying the boss's daughter
  5. Marrying to save property or for the sake of children. 
What do you think it is about these kinds of stories that make them so appealing? What keeps them from being trite and tired? I know I love marriage-of-convenience and mail-order-bride stories. I love 'instant family' stories. I think it's the hope of a happily-ever-after in the face of impossible circumstances. I love it when the hero and heroine are married as early in the story as possible and they have to figure out how they're going to become a family.

What historical romance story lines do you like? Do you think there are some that are overdone? Is there a story that you'd love to read?

**** A little bit of housekeeping. Last week I announced I'd give away a couple of copies of A Bride Sews With Love in Needles, CA. One to a commentor, and one to the commentor's friend. The winner is: Kristine Klein! (Chosen scientifically by asking my husband to choose a number between one and twelve.) Congrats!

________________________________________
Author of Historical Romance

Reluctant Bookkeeper 

Homeschool Mom (for 2 more months)

Earl Grey Aficionado 

Find me on FACEBOOK

Find me on PINTEREST

Find me on GOODREADS

Find me on AMAZON.COM

16 comments:

  1. I think there might be something to add if we think of European/ British/ Colonial settings- not that I can come up with them . . .
    Certainly less 'mail-order bride' and more 'marriage of propriety or convenience'.
    Well, now you have me thinking...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, Debra, I didn't include the 'standard' regency topics like marrying for a heir, forced marriage for propriety, etc. Good call.

      Delete
    2. they rather fit under the marriage of propriety or suitability... you happen to be the new governess, he was the wild child and now must take a proper wife, etc etc. I think they do fall under that one big umbrella. Arranged marriage for sure is popular in this genre. :)

      Delete
  2. I love reading mail order bride stories, never get tired of them. I think it's the idea that someone would do that, because I never would have, that keeps me intrigued. Two of my favorite stories/movies are Sarah Plain and Tall and Love Comes Softly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gail, those are two of my favorites, too. :)

      Delete
    2. I LOVE Sarah Plain and Tall!

      Delete
  3. I think the reason those themes don't get old too quickly is because you can have so many variables within those themes. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. True, Susan. There are so many ways you can spin the story. After all, they say there are only 7 plots in the world. It's what the author does it. :)

      Delete
  4. I personally sort of feel the Pinkerton agent thing is overdone. But yet I still read them and enjoy them, so who am I to talk!! LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :D Even as I plot a Pinkerton story....

      Delete
  5. Thanks, Erica! What a nice surprise! Your books introduced me to the mail order bride theme. Love those stories. I can't imagine being in that kind of situation myself, but I enjoy reading about someone else being put in those circumstances. I do have a penchant for the regency era romance stories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kristine! Congrats on winning! I've been on a regency kick lately myself. :)

      Delete
  6. I think part of the appeal is wondering. I actually just bought a book with the marriage of convenience storyline. I love watching what generally start about to be complete strangers learn to love each other. I like wondering when they will figure it out and what will happen next. Susan P. is correct in saying there are so many different ways an author can take a story. I also enjoy mail-order bride stories. Similar idea, but they have it planned in advance and it isn't the surprise it is for the others.
    A storyline that I think gets old is the one where he's some sort of hero-type (cop, paramedic, firefighter, soldier, etc.) and doesn't want to marry for fear of what could happen to him. And she's trying to convince him that she's strong enough to handle it. It takes the whole book for him to get over his hang-up. Drives me nuts! Some like that are excellent, the author handles it well and doesn't drag it out, but others, I just want to dope slap him and tell him to get on with it already! lol :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dope Slap! LOL Perfect. I've read books where I was so frustrated with the hero, mostly because I didn't think his back story was traumatic enough to cause his hangups. Those kinds of heroes come off as narcissistic and egotistic to me. Ugh!

      Delete
  7. From a male perspective...I like the marriage of convenience story because it provides a really nice background for character development, and helps one to understand the place from which loves springs.

    I like it so much, I wrote one (contemporary), and it's looking for an agent now.

    I agree with Sarah that the 'hero-type' who holds himself aloof for fear of what might happen to him is trite. I WAS someone like that, and didn't marry because I didn't need the distraction. Married guys got killed quicker, and I wanted to come home alive.

    It's not a matter of strength. It's a matter of focus, and extraneous relationships make one timid. You have too much to lose, and you'll focus on losing it. The fear fulfills itself.

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2014/04/marriage-misteaks.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, the male perspective! Always in high demand for a romance writer.

      "You have too much to lose, and you'll focus on losing it. The fear fulfills itself."

      That is very pithy! I love it!

      Delete

Hey friend! Please leave a comment, no lurking allowed ;)