Follow by Email

Friday, November 14, 2014

Why Are Romance Heroines So . . . Stupid?

As you probably know, I write some historical romance books (mostly westerns). Romance novelists often get a bad rap for cliched plots. And the Harlequin variety bodice-rippers are some of the worst offenders.

So . . . I was bad.

I wrote a spoof of those plotlines. My short story, in honor of Maddie & Tae's hit song, is titled The Girl in a Romance Novel. It is written in the form of a series of letters between the romance heroine and a mental health professional.

Disclaimer: This story contains humor relating to romance plots.


Time-period/Era: Vague. The women are wearing bodices (duh, can’t rip a bodice if you don’t have one.) The men aren’t wearing much more than glorified loincloths. Whether this is because they are pirates who have stripped to the waist, or highlanders in kilts during a United Kingdom heat wave that necessitated ridding themselves of shirts is uncertain.

Setting: A meadow surrounded by trees on top of a cliff overlooking the sea.

Characters: The Girl in a Romance Novel, a Professional Counselor, a Hero, a Villainous Betrothed who reeks of garlic and steps on ant colonies for fun, hordes of brawny warriors under our Hero’s command.

Dear Counselor,

            I’m an eighteen-year-old wealthy heiress. I don’t think of myself as beautiful, but men often comment on my looks. My dad is normally a loving father. But giving into the mores of our day, he has betrothed me to a stranger thirty years my senior who is rumored to have an ill-disposition. I am currently on horseback riding towards a small ship that will take me to my husband. Any advice would be much appreciated.
A little about me. I am a strong woman who was tutored in swordplay by an aging groom so, if I wanted to strike out on my own, I could. I’m thinking of fleeing my betrothal and applying to the Oxford’s Herbalist Academy to learn medicine.

Nervously yours,
The Girl in a Romance Novel

Want to read the entire short story? Just click on my "sign up for newsletter" icon on the righthand side and I'll send you a copy right away. (And I promise I won't spam you with tons of emails.)

Or read part 2 here for free.
And read part 3 here for free.

PS My husband asked why the book cover says "cover art censored." If you need to ask this question, then obviously you haven't been looking at enough explicit romance covers recently. A quick search on Amazon for "Scottish Romance" or "Pirate Romance" will soon answer all your questions on this score. ;)

Already signed up for my newsletter, but still want a copy of this short story? Just comment below or on my Facebook page ( and I'll make sure to get you your copy.

1 comment:

  1. Ok, Anne. At first you were sweet. Then you became interesting and now you have hooked me. I love your creative, sweet spirit. Looking forward to reading the rest. Also sending you an ebook of my slice of life inspirational and look forward to seeing what you do next.