Yesterday, I celebrated twenty-six years of marriage to my wonderful handsome, husband from Montana, me being a Texas girl and all. I posted lots of pictures on my Facebook page and had some fun sharing with friends and family there. I also asked the question—twenty-six years ago, who would have guessed I’d be writing romance?
Some commented that at least I have inspiration—my marriage.
That started me thinking about the romance genre. In general, my romances happen quickly because I write in the romantic suspense sub-genre. So either the characters have known each other in the past or they are just meeting each other when the story begins. From there, the action and story world draw them in and compel them forward to run for their lives or solve a mystery together. They must rely on one another and trust one another like they have never trusted anyone else in their lives—and for their lives. The crucible, if you will, forces them together under pressure and no matter how hard they fight it, they fall in love, or at least admit they know there is a connection and they each want to explore a future together. Now that general formula can happen in many different ways, and I’m only generalizing my stories here as I’ve written them for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line.
Some readers prefer a long, drawn out romance that happens over a period of months, and that seems more realistic to them because that’s how it happened for them personally. But there are those of us who fell in love quickly and married quickly. My husband and I had only known each other a couple of months, then dated for five weeks before he proposed. From that point we planned the wedding that took place three months later. That’s pretty fast. So for me, whether a romance happens quickly or grows slowly over time, I’m all in.
But here’s another thought. How much more romantic is a marriage of decades where two people have grown together and they know all the good, the bad and the ugly about each other, and they still love each other? In fact, they love each other more. From experience I can tell you there is no deeper lover, no more romantic love, than a lasting, unconditional love.
Elizabeth Goddard is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than a twenty romance novels and counting. A 7th generation Texan, Elizabeth graduated with a B.S. degree in computer science and worked in high-level software sales for several years before retiring to home school her children and fulfill her dreams of becoming an author. To find out more or sign up for her newsletter, visit her website at ElizabethGoddard.com.