Tuesday, April 10

Exceptions

I've been following some of the conversations about rules, deal breakers, rape, forced seductions... and I've come to a few conclusions...

  1. Rules are meant to be broken when the story calls for it, it's the rule breakers that keep the genre fresh and changing.
  2. Deal breakers should be taken within the context of the story. Sometimes they work.
  3. Authors should write the story they want to tell, if it breaks rules or includes deal breakers, so be it, it's the chance they take when they write and if it works all the better for the readers.
  4. Do the censorship people think we're all mindless and incapable of thinking for ourselves?

It's about the storytelling, the writing, where the story is taking the reader. If the author can make it work, all the better, if not then the author took a chance that didn't work. Everyone has preferences, likes and dislikes. If I pick up a book that isn't working for me, I can put it down, nobody is holding a gun to my head to finish it.

On some level it's the readers that drive the genre, if we're not buying books that have a particular theme ultimately there will be less of them, it's one of the things that make the genre rather cyclical (medivals out, paranormals in, and Regencies holding on). On a whole there are themes that wont hold up over time, forced seduction and cheaters are two that work occasionally for some readers. Does that mean we're going to see a steady diet of these types of stories? Doubtful because the market wont support it. So I see it as okay to have these books make an occasional appearance because if the story works the reader gets something different.

And different can sometimes be good.

4 comments:

Holly said...

I totally agree. The romance genre would be pretty boring if everyone did the same thing and no one stepped outside the box.

Ann(ie) said...

Yep. I like it here outside the box. The box is too small.

Sam said...

Authors don't always have the last word. My editor at Ellora's Cave had me change my last book (Merlin's Song) because of rule number 1)...The hero may not make love to anyone else after he meets the heroine.
So I had to go back and change the scene and even still I have a 'readers note' on the site warning readers that there is a scene with multiple partners. (Well, it fits with the fantasy plot, honest. I was upset I had to change, thinking of all the Lora Leigh books I'd read where the hero bops just about anything that moves in front of him...but my editor insisted it was 'house rules'.)

Rosie said...

I guess it's good there is a debate. I'm just floored it is causing this much of a brouhaha. If you don't like the content, don't buy it. If the book doesn't get purchased there won't be more of the same written or available. It's the old supply and demand theory.

Sam, wow! I can only imagine, as I'm not a writer, how tough it must be to swallow when someone tells you "makes you" rewrite your story to accomodate "house rules". That's gotta be tough.