Some guests had read my work. Some had not. I'm pretty sure no one there had read ALL ABOUT EVIE yet, except for my sister, (I didn't even realize the 'Barb' chatting was 'my' Barb until later. Too funny!) and my friend Mark Posey (two-time Mr. Romance contestant and husband to author Tracy Cooper-Posey). So although I was there to promote ALL ABOUT EVIE and though we did talk about the premise, the majority of the time we engaged in mutual Q&A. They asked me about writing in general--my process, my past works and future interests. I asked them about their likes and dislikes as readers.
For one, I was very interested to know if readers are still interested in romantic comedy given the current monumental popularity of erotica, dark paranormal and urban fantasy. Seriously, I'm beginning to feel like the odd man out! I witnessed the overwhelming popularity of these sub-genres at the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention. I also noticed it at my local Borders bookstore this past weekend. I can't tell you how thrilled I was to find ALL ABOUT EVIE on the new release table. This special placement is a bonus to the author and not to be taken lightly. After my euphoria settled, I studied the books surrounding Evie, all dark and intense with the exception of those in the mystery genre. Maybe Evie should turn super sleuth? *g*
On the positive side, my cover popped--vibrant white, cherry red and hot pink surrounded by earthy deep blue, black, and blood red. On the other... clearly I wasn't part of the popular crowd. A geek among the cool kids. Crazy thinking, I know. But, being an insecure artist, I must obssess on something.
When I posed the question regarding romantic comedy to the RJ chatters, everyone chimed in with a enthusastic, "Yes! We still like it!" Billie Jo said something poignant about balancing light and dark. Wish I could remember her exact words. Overall, the response indicated that though they were devouring dark paranormal and urban fantasy, they still enjoyed losing themselves in a light-hearted adventure sans otherworldly creatures. One reader mentioned how much she enjoys my books and how she considers them 'lift me ups'.
Lifting someone's mood. Making a bad day brighter. I'm thinking it doesn't get much better than that. So I'll just keep on doing what I'm doing, even though it sometimes feels like I showed up to the prom in overalls and high top sneakers. Special thanks to the RJ chatters for their insightful thoughts and good cheer!
"Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart..." -- William Wordsworth