Mar.17

Happy Endings

And they live happily ever after…

While I would love to wax poetic about happy endings as a romance writer, the realist in me just won’t let me do it.  Call me jaded but for me in real life there are few instances where there is the fairytale happily ever after ending.

And in real life endings aren’t always neat, whether they’re happy endings, or whether they’re sad endings.  -Stephen King

With all conflict and resolution, there is always some change which ultimately occur.  Something must shift within the status quo to make room for the next chapter to being.    A relationship, friendship, way of thinking…must cease to be so something new can take its place.  An while we are happy at the new outcome, as human beings we still lament what was.

 

That being said I will always want love to win out in the end.  I want the sweet embrace, the tender caress, and the passionate, toe curling kiss.  I can be realistic about what it will take to get there and still want romance to prevail.  I will always want a happy ending.

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Writing,Romance,Quotes,On Writing

Feb.26

Latinas Write Romance…Author Maria Ferrer

Dear Constant Reader,

I am pleased to share my blog today with Latina romance author Maria Ferrer.

Writing the Latino Hero

by Maria C. Ferrer

I am writing Latino heroes, and they are different from white heroes or African American heroes.  It’s not just the color of their skin because — believe it or not — Latinos come in all shades.  And, it’s not the dark hair, because some Latinos are blonde…some are even bald.

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Being Latino and writing a Latino hero is more about culture and language.

 

I won’t bother to talk about regurgitating the Latino Lover mystique, because I find clichés so passé, unless the author uses them properly.  But that is another article all together.
What it really comes down to, what really shapes the Latino hero is the author.

 

My heroes are usually Puerto Rican, because I’m Puerto Rican. When I am writing a Latino hero or fleshing him out, I already have a blue print in my mind of who he is.  My hero is Catholic; has a close knit family; visits Puerto Rico often to see family and friends; still asks for his Abuelita’s blessing when he sees her; likes to dance salsa and merengue; and prefers rum to vodka.

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Of course, if he’s a New York Rican — that’s a Puerto Rican who grows up in New York, whether they were born in Puerto Rico or not — he will have all of the above, plus a New York City attitude and sophistication.

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The easiest and fastest way to show the hero’s Latinidad is through language.  My hero speaks English, Spanish and Spanglish.  (Yes, Virginia, Spanglish is a language.)  He says, querida and amada / lover and beloved.

 

This is what I start with.  Then the story’s plot line will shape the hero further — where he lives; where he works; his immediate family and friends; the women in his life, past and present; etc. My hero has everything a “regular” non-Latino has/ could have; he just has a little something extra that I will weave here and there into the plot to enhance the story.8603464_gal

 

What is that something extra?  What makes a Latino Hero?  Amor y sabor.♥

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Maria C. Ferrer is proud to be part of the Latinas Write Romance Blog Tour with Mercedes Cruz and Vanessa Peters.  Maria writes contemporary romances under her real name and erotica under the pseudonym of Del Carmen.  Her stories have been published by Cleis Press and Ravenous Romance, and have appeared in such magazines as Cosmopolitan for Latinas, Penthouse and Star.  Visit her at www.marializaferrer.blogspot.com and www.mydelcarmen.com.

Motivation,Writing,Romance,Multicutural,Constant Reader,On Writing,Latinas Write Romance

Feb.02

Latinas Write Romance…Author Mercedes Cruz

Dear Constant Reader,

I am pleased to share my blog today with Latina romance author Mercedes Cruz.

Love Latino Style

By Mercedes Cruz

Latinos are a group of unique people. Almost everything we do we do is with passion. As a Latina born and raised in the USA, I personally can speak from experience. Although I have found that my up-bringing in a big city makes me more American than Latina, I can still very much relate to Love Latino Style. Being a Latina is in the food, the mannerisms, the music and the tough love.

Love Latino Style

I will not say that I am the authority on Latino love or speak for all Latinos; I can say the love I received from my parents might have been a little, ok a lot, harsher than my non-Latino peers. Part of these, sometimes harsh lessons, included loving each other despite our past disagreements. These lessons I learned, whether through the good or bad times as a young adult, will stay with me forever.

Please check out more from this fabulous writer.  Visit her at

Blog www.mercedescruz.com

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Mercededscruz

Twitter @MercedesAuthor

 

Challenges,Writing,Romance,Multicutural,Latinas Write Romance

May.16

Planting Seeds

I have an idea which I have built into the core of the novel I am currently working on.    I am writing with the intention of planting a seed in the mind of my reader; a seed of possibility.  It is a seed born of lost loves, old crushes and lovers of nights past.

Sure the sexy and steamy parts of a story will pull readers in, but there is also the lure of possibility.  What draws the Constant Reader in is the fantasy of it all; things that they know could never happen but nonetheless they love getting caught up in the idea that it could.  But for me there should also be a touch of the actual; some anchor in reality for the Constant Reader to be able to associate with.  It is in the actual that they will find their possibility and connect to a part of the novel.  It is there that the novel becomes more than just a story for them.  That is when they can begin to imagine that fate will weave a web of events and chance encounters that will bring their love back to them.

I have an image of my reader in my mind and it is to her and her possibilities that I am writing.  For her I will put in to the story all my best plot twists and intrigue.  I will write to keep her turning pages.  I want her to be so enthralled with the story that she will make moments throughout her day to get back to it.  I want her to be caught within those lines until the very end.

And when she puts the book down after the last line is read, I want my seedling of possibility to sprout.  I will have planted it with a kiss and a blessing for fated love.  I want her to wonder if maybe, someway or somehow my heroine’s story could happen to her.   Could she one day get back to the love that she lost so many years ago?  Maybe he is her teenage love which burned so hot and intense it terrified her and she ran.  He is the love she has wondered about for so many years.  What kind of man has he become?  So many unanswered questions that build on themselves and she imagines any number of scenarios of how they would meet again.

Black-white Photographs of 1980s New YorkAnd just as those last tendrils of the daydream fades and she pulls herself back into the reality of her everyday life,  she will step off a crowded train as she does every day, but on this day she will hear a familiar, “Hey Love.” And he will be there.

Ah Fate… you are you are a sneaky beast; there I go falling for your trap yet again.

 

Writing,Romance,Novel,Constant Reader

Mar.16

A Candle in the Dark…

There has been an unyielding sense of ennui that has wrapped itself around my shoulders. It laid in like a second skin and I just couldn’t seem to shake it.

So I turned to what has always been my comfort…books and the stories that live within them. My status as a constant reader, while it’s had moments of wax and wane over the years, has held as a steady necessity for me. It is within a book’s pages that I turn when I find myself lost in moments of weariness. I looked through my catalogue of books already read, knowing it would be there that I would find my reprieve. This feeling which grew from a mild nagging to a sudden constriction of my creative flow, would only be improved by the familiarity of a story, well-known and loved.

I settled on a romance; a novella I’ve read a couple times already. Some would mock the choice, I’m sure, but everyone’s comfort is their own, and I find no shame in mine, nor have I ever cared much what others thought of my choices in literature. But I digress…

I eased into the story and familiarity of the characters created by author Patricia Briggs in “Alpha and Omega” and felt the tightening slowly alleviated with each page turned. The story, a paranormal romance, is also one of fate and destined love. It is the story of Anna, a broken and battered woman, and Charles a powerful, heart harden and stoic man; a story of soul mates. Their story, as favorite stories are known to do for those that love them, improved my mood. It was through the storytelling and writing (thank you Mrs. Briggs, I have been your Constant Reader for some time now) but also in something much deeper that I found solace in.

Within the lines of this story lies a tale of hope; even when life feels at its most dire there is light and within that light is love, strong and unwavering. This may be the opinion of one foolhardy romantic, but it was that thought that eased my restless heart.

So, my message to you, my fellow Constant Reader is to go forth and seek out your comfort, wherever it lives and cherish it.

This is my candle in the dark…what is yours?

Challenges,Writing,Romance,Constant Reader

Sep.14

Why I’m a Multicultural Romance Writer

When I sat down to answer the question of why I write multicultural romance, I drew a complete and utter blank.  Every reason I theorized, did not ring true for me.  The answer came only after I realized that writing in this genre of romance was not my intent.
 
I have been an avid reader since a young age.  One of my most vivid memories is of my parents taking me to Walden Books and scanning the racks for the perfect book to take home.  Even as a constant reader, it was not until my late teens that I read a book with Hispanic characters.  I am of Puerto Rican descent, born and raised in New York, and while urban city life has allowed me to relate to a great many things, I could not find a story that mirrored my life.  I was at a loss to find a story that allowed me to make a direct connection to the world I grew up in.  Though I have found a great many amazing Hispanic authors, the stories of second and third generation Hispanics coming of age in the U.S. are far and few in fiction.
 
Once I discovered romance, Historical to Erotic and Chick-Lit to Paranormal, I added in a whole new world of characters and stories to my voracious appetite for reading.  I couldn’t get enough.  My status as constant reader turned to that of insatiable reader.  While I was thoroughly entertained, I was again unable to find my likeness between the pages.    I longed for stories of strong and confident Latinas with careers, who are not afraid to push to the next level in both life and love; stories of interracial romances, where cultures come together, finding passion and love because, and in spite of, their differences.
 
So my intent was never to write a multicultural romance, so much as to write stories set within a frame I could fully relate to, with characters that reflect me and the people in the world around me.  Whether it is in the form of Latinas or interracial couples, there is a lack of representation within literature.  I feel I can make a contribution to altering that by writing to the changing faces of couples and love in America and connecting with a growing population that also wants to see itself in books, if that makes me a writer of multicultural romances, so be it.

Writing,Romance,Multicutural,Novel