Some book trends, practices and tropes are timeless, but others we’re happy to see disappear. Here are some trends in our indie community we hope to say good-bye in 2017.

Click Baiting    

Dear Click Baiters,
Fuck you.

Sincerely,
The Rest of The World.

No, but seriously. Why. For the love of all things holy, WHY. If you’re a blogger, I get that you want people to click your link and buy shit off of them. But, you have fans on your page, and it is seriously the biggest fuck you to them when you click bait with all of your “Oh Em Gee! This book ROCKED MY WORLD! Click here to find out what I’m talking about!” ‘s but never give the book’s title or author. Just don’t. Tell your damn followers specifically what book you’re spazzing about. And if you’re good at blogging, and can say more than “OH MY GOD” with a million explanation points, they will click the link. I promise. They will. So please just do us a favor and tell us the title and author and stop the click baiting, you dicks.

Step Everything Books  We feel like this was a trend that really took off in 2015 and unfortunately decided to continue in 2016. Don’t we have enough step brother, sister, father, mother, cousin, uncle or aunt twice removed romance books out there? Can we PLEASE move on to a different taboo? This trope is played out. Move on, please

Woe is Me SyndromeIs anyone else tired of seeing all the “Woe is me” FB statuses, tweets and posts? Woe is me I made USA Today but not NYT. Woe is me people aren’t seeing my FB posts. Woe is me I bought so many books last week that I can’t buy anymore till payday. Woe is me I have 400 5-Star reviews but this one 2-Star review will ruin my career.  Thousands of innocent people are dying around the world. A reality television star was elected President of the United States. There are thousands of homeless people living on the streets. People are fighting cancer and other deadly diseases. There are bigger issues other than being on top or the most popular. If you step back and take a look at the big picture, your life doesn’t suck if you’re still able to do your dream job, have a roof over your head, food on the table and fans who will continue to buy your books.

Photographers Hiring “Models” from the gym or GNC – It’s been said before, but it could be said again: JUST BECAUSE HE HAS MUSCLES AND TATTOOS DOES NOT MAKE HIM A MODEL! Yep, we called out the shouty caps on that one. We won’t even apologize for it. Models should be photogenic, they should look good in all kinds of situations and from many angles. They should even be able to make the most awkward of situations, say standing in a bathtub – wearing a cowboy hat – holding a towel over their junk, look like an excellent idea. It may appear to be an easy job, but it’s not. We’d love to see a tad (by tad we mean heaps) more discrimination. We get it, “hot” is subjective, yada yada yada…but let’s be honest, some of the cover photos we’ve seen pop up the past couple of years are just plain silly. And before you go commenting with things like “Hey, they are really nice guys!” – we aren’t saying they are douchebags. Well, not all. We’re simply stating that cover models should be able to actually model.

Models Turned “Authors” – While we’re on the topic on male models, lets talk about models turned authors. Now, we’re not saying dudes can’t write romance, but it’s a little suspect seeing a model all of a sudden become an author. To us, it feels like they’re trying to tap into a market that they have no business in and are only in it for dolla, dolla bills y’all. They aren’t writers and have probably never read a romance book before jumping into the indie book modeling business. To us, you’re exploiting the women that find you attractive for money. We see what you’re doing and we’re not fans of it. And keep your shirts down, too. Your abs have nothing to do with how well you can construct a story, and if you want people to take you serious as an author, write more and flaunt less you silly little peacocks.

Authors Who Write for Sales Figures and Not Their Art All the books we have loved for more than a hot minute, are books that were written with thought and with a labor of love. This trend of thin plot, thick sex bullshit, in our minds, degrades the romance genre as a whole. It plays into the “mommy porn” stereotype. Yeah, great, you are making a quick buck – pumping out ‘book’ after ‘book’. Good for you. But at what cost? Really? We won’t call it art, we probably won’t call you authors either.

Violence, rape, etc… – All four of us have enjoyed Dark Romance reads in the past. But, it is really beginning to feel like a competition between authors on who can come up with the most degradable and horrific situation to put their heroine in. Or hero, as the case may be. Do some stories call for violence? Yes, absolutely. Is it necessary for your girl to be raped and beaten repeatedly throughout the book? Maybe not. Sometimes a single incident can be more profound. Here’s to hoping for the idea of ‘less is more’ in this genre’s future.

The Celebrity Syndrome – Some of us have been around for a hot minute. Some of us knew you when you were just another struggling debut author or blogger. Some of us remember how nice and humble you were. Some of us saw your rise in the industry. Some of us saw how that changed you. Some of us think you should remember what it was like for you a few years ago. Some of us don’t really like this new you. Some of us think that it’s great you are selling more books now but aren’t sure why that turned you into a raging asshole. Some of us think that you just write book reports and kids in grade school can do that, too. Some of us think you should at least try to remain a little humble and appreciative. Some of us want less pictures of your LV bags and more about your work, please and thank you. Some of us would like to remind you that, unless TMZ is buying photos of you, you ain’t shit honey.

Reviewer Attacking – You had to know this was coming, right? We fully agree that reviews that personally attack an author are bad form. If a review says anything along the lines of this author is a horrible person and should just kill themselves, that sucks. However, if the review or rant is strictly criticizing the product, based on said reviewers opinion – it’s sort of fair game. It’s a product, just like any other. Say you go to a coffee shop and order a peppermint mocha (mmm, yummy), the barista is as cute as a fucking button with a great personality and you love her. But, when you take a sip of that minty goodness, it tastes like diarrhea drip – you have every right to say “my coffee tastes like shit and this is not what I was expecting.” It doesn’t change the fact that the barista is a great person. It doesn’t change the fact that yesterday, and probably tomorrow, she’ll make your candy cane coffee perfectly. Today though, that PRODUCT, didn’t fulfill your needs. Next time you think you need to incite a mob over a bad review, don’t make it personal by calling the reviewer a jackass. That’s making it personal. Besides, quite a lot of people buy books based on bad reviews. We’re bloggers, not promoters and not book sellers. We don’t love everything we read and that’s okay. 

The Mob Mentality The definition of a bully: noun – a person who uses strength or power to harm or intimidate those who are weaker. verb – use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants. <– Got that? Therefore, when something in life isn’t going your way and instead of handling it like a big girl you post about it on Facebook, essentially opening the door for your minions to attack the source of your problem, you may be a bully.

DRAMA, DRAMA, DRAMA – So. Much. Drama. Get over yourselves. Also, if you constantly say you hate drama yet, it continues to find you – YOU are the drama.

 

So there you have it! For the love of books, we’re hoping these trends disappear  after this year. BUT, we do have a list of things we’d love to see more of in the coming years.

 

Single Dads We love them and we’d be so happy to see more. Especially if they are not just the weekend warrior types. We want the burly beasts to be in the diaper changing trenches, full time!

Good Parents – While we are on the subject of parenting, let’s ask this question. Why are there so many bad parents in books? Let’s have some good ones, we like good parents. We ARE good parents. We want more of those. They make us warm and fuzzy!

Fantasy – There is few better experiences in the world, than a book submersing you into a fantastical land. A world of dragons or faeries or goblins or whatever your imagination comes up with. While most really good Fantasy seems to come from the YA authors, we would really enjoy seeing more adult versions too.

Underdogs – Nerds, Geeks, Beta Males. Give us a guy who flies under the radar but still manages to find a way to win the girl. Not all hot guys have to be an in your face Alpha. Don’t get us wrong, we love a good – true – Alpha. But we like options, too!

Anal – Clarification: Good and careful anal. ‘Nuf said.

Blue Collars – We would absolutely love to see more blue collar heroes. They don’t all need to be CEO’s. A lot of us readers are married to the loves or our lives and they happen to be electricians or machinists or, you know, real life jobs. More down and dirty boys, please!!

Romantic Suspense – With maybe a little bit of a heavy hand on the romance. We are all for some thrills in bed and out of it!

Quirky Heroines – This goes along with our the underdogs. Not all heroines have to be Barbie doll perfect. Our favorites tend to be the ones a little left of center.

Realistic Drama – Life is hard enough, we don’t need to add the whole bag of drama dealing chips to it.

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RomanceRanting

 

WARNING: This post is full of SPOILERS!!
If you have not watched Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, then DO NOT read this post. Go watch the revival on Netflix first. If you feel ragey or disappointed after watching it then come back here to read this post. If you enjoyed the revival and want to read Tiffany’s thoughts then continue on reading. If you don’t care about the Gilmore Girls and like to enjoy reading about Tiffany’s frustrations then continue on reading.

 

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

 

Dear Rory
 
It’s been almost 10 years since we’ve been in each other’s lives and the homecoming was oh so welcome until it wasn’t. November 25th was a day I counted down on a physical calendar as well as every platform on social media. I was on your side even when others weren’t. I withstood judgement from my friends for you.  But then you turn around and you disappoint me to no end… Where do I even begin?! 
 
 
Well let’s see in 9 years you’ve progressively moved backwards and not in the least bit forward. Why?! Remember when you graduated from Chilton at the top of your class, or when you graduated Yale as a valedictorian, or what about when you trailed Obamas presidential campaign (I mean he was our president for 8 years, don’t you feel like you were apart of it)? Well, I remember because I lived those proud moments with you and back to your very present now I am living with your very disappointing moments as well. 
 
 
And now I’ll begin…
 
 
Winter: 
Right off the bat we learn you have a boyfriend named Paul and you’ve been with him for 2 years, but forget all about him all the time!! Even so, I was willing to forgive that along with the fact you are basically homeless and shipping your boxes to every resident in Stars Hollow. GIRL ,you’re 32, get your life right. But then DAYS later you end up in London with Logan which makes you a cheater, YET AGAIN. So I guess no lesson was learned in season 4, and just because you forget about Paul makes it okay to cheat on him, eh?! I was so mad because YOU KNOW BETTER.  But then you kind of hint to Logan about him having any girls items laying around, possibly making him a cheater as well… but I’m still holding out hope that my beloved Logan IS NOT A CHEATER since we are still only in episode one. And Paris that girl accomplished enough for the both of you combined in the last 9 years and then some. So why did she turn out so well and you didn’t? She has been your Christina Yang since the dawn of time, there to keep you on track and to remind you that you are the sun! But you still did not shine and you’ve published one article in The New Yorker while she has a MD, PHD, and hell any other kind of “D” you can attain. I will say what I loved about the Winter episode was Richards funeral, no surprise that the death was my favorite part, but it was the most honest part and the tribute paid to him was well done. 
 
Spring: 
AND YUP within the first ten minutes of the second episode I knew nothing could save the revival for me. Enter Mr. Huntzberger who confirms that Logan is engaged. Now I’m not a prude, not in the least, but 14 years later and Rory you are in the same damn situation! But what really gets me is the way Logan’s character is being sullied in dirty dish water. No matter what team you you were on whether it be Dean, Jess, or Logan (#teamLOGAN here) one thing we can all agree on as a whole is that Logan loved you Rory and would of given you the world complete with an avocado tree, had you said yes to his proposal in season 7. That being said, I refuse to accept the way his character is being torn to shreds. He is not making you the other woman, RORY, YOU ARE  choosing to be the other woman (there is a difference)!!!
 
More Tiffany Insights: After this revelation I was only continuing to watch just to get to the end. Paris and Rory had a Chilton day where even the Headmaster was concerned about Rory’s future and career, really this is just sad at this point. More Lorelei being selfish, Richard still wants Luke to franchise even in death, Paris yelling at Doyle, Caesar has long hair, Rory got dropped from her only work lead and then she is reduced to work for free, and she has a one night stand with a Wookiee.
 
“I’m feeling very lost these days.” Rory this was the reason you refused Logans proposal 9 years ago this is no longer valid and your Ivy League ass is not allowed to use this excuse! 
 
Summer: 
You guessed it, more let down. Are you catching on to the theme here.  Blah, blah, blah, oh and a musical! What in the world, literally 20 wasted minutes on a musical that tied into absolutely nothing! But the one good thing about the Summer episode was JESS, and he is the voice of reason in your chaos Rory (very similar to Luke & Lorelais dynamic) but once again you even drab down on the conversation, of all the things that can be said you state that you don’t have any underwear.  
 
More Tiffany Insights: Jess does convince her to write a book about her and her mother which spurs a spark. I fell asleep after the first hour in this episode my body was literally rejecting this revival bullshit. Nonetheless I sadly still know what happens (out of order) Lorelei decides she’s going to do “WILD” the book version and it’s just a dumb added in twist, Lorelei is not supporting Rory’s book idea, and lastly even though it didn’t really happen last Rory and Logan “break up”.
 
DAYS later and I am still upset about this whole ordeal Rory because if were really listening to this conversation you know all you would have to do is pull a Meredith Grey and tell him to choose you, love you, and it would be done Logan would be there for you, there would be no more Odette!! 
 
Fall (finally): 
This is it and any expectations I had have far been diminished. My favorite part of this episode though happened to be everyone’s least favorite and while I will admit it was dumb it was still the best. Shall I say Guerrilla masks?! That can only mean one thing, the Life and Death Brigade are about to takeover your life Rory, and my beloved Logan was with them. Why would he be with them when you two ended the bullshit affair, because he LOVES YOU THAT’S WHY!! So whilst the scene was dumb it was Logans devotion to you that made it my favorite. 
 
More Tiffany Insights: Fast forward Lorelei is back from her trip and not breaking up with Luke and they’re finally getting married, Emily went off to Nantucket, Rory is using Richards office to write, and Lorelei and Rory make amends.  Back to Rory and she sees Dean and thank all that he atleast made it out alive and his character is intact. And I’m going to fast forward again real fast to the infamous last four words, which was a dialogue not just 4 words from Rory.  
Rory: Mom 
Lorelei: Yeah
Rory: I’m pregnant. 
 
So, Rory, yes I could of wrote a letter to your mother or grandmother or even to Logan himself so he knew these episodes would never change my perception of him but instead I have to write it to you. To you because I’ve loved you through all your previous stages of life and your truth didn’t make me love you any less but the way you grew into that truth is what subtracted from my love for you. This is the thing this “full circle” conclusion, it’s bullshit! YOU Rory Gilmore had a chance, you were granted opportunities so you didn’t end up in the same position as your mother and yet you still did, but 16 years older than her. And the cryptic visit to Christopher’s office wasn’t for your book like we thought, it was for your own insight to raise your child on your own and well that’s selfish. I have to assume it’s Logans and he should be given the chance, given the chance because I know he would do right by you, he always has. Let’s be clear Jess is not your Luke, Logan is not your Christopher, and Dean is not your Max. They aren’t because you have the insight to not mislead or mistreat these men because YOU KNOW BETTER. MORALS RORY, MORALS, you have them but did not practice them. I am very literally undoing this revival, in my book I will keep you on the pedestal I always have where you graduated Yale and followed Obama and you became your own woman one who defied the full circle and even though you loved a man you defined your own happiness on your own. So there the end for me will always  be at season 7, where even though I was sad you turned down Logans proposal you stood proud and were an admirable woman. 
 
Sincerely, 
Tiffany Ly (my actual last name because this is a letter of importance) 
 

 

P.S. – I read in a previous article the Amy Sherman-Palladino and her husband never watched season 7 because they didn’t write it and after seeing these 4 episodes it was clear they didn’t. Rumored this is how the series was always supposed to end and had Rory been 22 it might have made much more sense but that is not the case and this ending felt more like closure for the writers and not the viewers. BUT no matter how bad Amy Sherman-Palladino tainted these characters, and she did, for me LOGAN will always be the man who surprised Rory on rooftops, sat in the hospital with her after Richards heart-attack, and gave her experiences that will last a lifetime, always! 

 

 


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RomanceRanting

I spent the weekend at the Emerald City Author Event in Seattle, and let me tell you, I had the freaking time of my life.  Driving home I was in tears – some from exhaustion, but mostly from being so filled with those gross things called emotions I was overflowing.

Something happened on the last morning I was there, and it wasn’t something I ever planned on talking about, because it really isn’t my story.  But after the last couple of days and some of the stuff being posted in Facebookland, I really wanted to remind everyone about how AMAZING our crazy little book world is.

There was a group of seven of us having breakfast at the most amazing little restaurant.  We didn’t have reservations, most of us were hungover, and we’re all pretty high on the hot-mess-scale-of-life.  We were loud, hungry, ordering everything off the menu and practically licking our plates.

At the end of our meal, one person (an author) quietly grabbed the ticket for the entire table and most of us were clueless that she had even done that.   The next thing I know, I turn to my left and see my fellow blogger crying.  The author on my left who had grabbed the ticket had her back to me, but was obviously wiping tears herself.  And off to the side?  The cute little waitress who dealt with our shit the entire morning was a sobbing mess.  She hugged the girls and quickly rushed to the back of the restaurant to compose herself.

What the Hell had just happened?   I looked left and right and the majority of us had no idea why two of us were crying.  I mean, the food was great… but I personally have never cried tears of joy from a perfect bowl of cheesey grits.

So we asked, and come to find out when the waitress brought back a wad of cash as change, the person who paid told her to keep it.  She earned it.  We were starving beasts and she worked her butt off.   And that’s when the waitress broke down.  You see, her and her fiance were to be married soon, but something had happened and he had suffered a serious brain injury.  Money was tight. In a time where they should have been high on life and love, she was completely stressed and worried.   “That little bit of extra money will go such a long way to help,” she said.

Her tears brought those two to tears.  And when they told the rest of us, we all cried.   And you know what?  Within seconds the entire table pulled out their purses and they started piling together money for this girl.  No questions asked, no prompting, no reason other than helping another human being have a little more hope and happiness.

Handing her the money was something that I’ll always remember and cherish.   Giving her a hug and feeling her entire body shake with emotion still makes me want to cry now, two days later.

You see, from where I’m sitting, this isn’t the only time I’ve seen this happen.  In this crazy little book world we live in, I see it all. the. time.   A reader with cancer has a GoFundMe set up and it explodes with donations.  The town of Flint has a water crisis and authors band together to raise money.  An authors posting their Starbucks card so readers all over the county can have a cup of coffee on her.  Just recently an author held an auction for kids with Autism and authors and bloggers went crazy with donations.

The amazingness of this book world is EVERYWHERE.  Authors promoting other authors.  Readers meeting up at signings and becoming best friends.  Online groups doing monthly  book giveaways.

I could go on and on, but really what I’m trying to say is:  Don’t let the times when you see negative post after negative post cloud your day.  The majority of what I see is a huge community that genuinely cares…and cares passionately.

I am so humbled and honored to be a part of this book world, and love ya’ll to pieces.  Thank you for being such an important part of my world.  <3


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RomanceRanting

 

My journey to being an Indie reader is a bit convoluted.  I’ve always been a big reader.  When the hubs and I struggled financially, we never had internet or cable, so I practically lived at the library or at yard sales searching for cheap paperbacks that typically already had the covers ripped off.  I’m not one of those readers who hadn’t read since high school but picked up FSOG and fell in love with reading…  reading and I have always been the very best of friends.

But one of my girlfriends is one of those people that I mentioned above.  She read Fifty, like fifty times, and then searched the web for what to read next, and the rest is history.  She became a fucking savage and somehow fell into the Indie world.

I remember sitting with her at work in between saving lives and squishing boobs and her being like, “You should really download the Kindle app.  E-books are legit.”  And all I could do is snarl and judge her a shit ton little.  I’d respond, “Um, no thank you.  I prefer real books that I can hold.”

And then my girl would be like, “Leah, you should really try a couple Indie authors.  You don’t know what you’re missing!”   And I would smile politely and say, “I’ve never had hemorrhoids either, but that doesn’t mean I need to experience them to know that I won’t like them.”  Because I totally thought Indie authors were trad-pub rejects, or bored housewives who needed to get a real hobby.  (Yes, I was a judgmental whore. But just hear me out.)

And this went back and forth for a while until she went a little ghetto on my ass and threatened bodily harm if I wouldn’t just try one.  (That’s a little over exaggerated, but you’re picking up what I’m throwing down.  I already said she turned savage, and I meant it.)   So, I begrudgingly downloaded the Kindle app and downloaded a book that all of her crazy book friends were loving, My Side by Tara Brown.

I read it.  And I hated it, just like I knew I would.

I seriously hated it.  So I went over to Amazon to check out the author’s profile and prove to my friend that the author was probably a schmuck and that’s where things started to turn for me.  Tara’s  ‘About Me’ on Amazon is different than it used to be, but I remember reading something like, “I won’t talk about myself in the third person because that’s weird” and LOLing because it really is weird.  And her whole spiel had me rolling in my chair, because that bitch is funny (she’s also one of my most favorite humans now, ever.)  So then I went to her website and read her blog posts for hours and kind of turned into a weird stalker.

So of course in my total stalker-haze I downloaded one of her paranormal stories (without telling anyone, of course.  It was a total special-ops moment because this bitch hates to admit she’s wrong) and I read the entire series in a matter of days.  I loved it.  Her writing was brilliant and I had never read anything like it ever.

I ended up reading every single book that woman had self-published, and when I read her BORN series, I was hooked.  If an Indie author could write a story that completely and utterly gutted me like that did, I was hooked.  I was a fan. I was a believer.

I made a second Facebook account just for book shit, because that entire world intrigued me.  Authors were on Facebook?  There were other people in the world who loved reading as much as me?  There were giveaways for books and free shit?  I could message an author and they would actually respond?   My mind was fucking blown.

I stopped reading paperbacks for the most part because being able to read at night when I’m laying in bed listening to my husband snore cuddling with my husband without a light on was a huge game changer.  And I’ll totally admit now that e-books have made me weak as fuck, because when I actually do have to hold up a paperback, I swear my wrists get so sore and I actually contemplate wearing wrist braces.

I still read traditionally published books, but 95% of what I read is Indie… and I truly believe that the quality of those books sometimes far surpass some that get published.  I mean seriously, some of those Indie authors are life-changing, soul-crushing, heart-stopping geniuses!

And I love the Indie world.  The authors, the bloggers, the readers.  Some of my closest and bestest friends are my internet book friends that no one in my real life really understand, but that’s okay, they’re my people.  My spirit animals.

And having relationships with authors is pretty fucking rad.  Getting to ask them questions, tell them how they made me ugly cry, getting to meet them at events – it’s a new way of life.  Indie authors have to be some of the hardest working, most generous human beings on this planet, and I feel pretty damn lucky to call them my friends.

So yeah.  I went from a judgmental, paperback self-righteous whoreface to being a loud and proud Indie reader.  And I’m pretty sure I’m here to stay.  🙂

I’d love to hear how you found yourself immersed in this crazy, awesome Indie world!  Let me hear your story!

 

 


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RomanceRanting

It was brought to our attention that we bitch a lot. Okay, that’s not really true. It was suggested that we come up with a post about what we love about Romance. Surprisingly (not really), it’s so much easier to come up with a list of the things you hate.  It’s pretty easy to gloss over all the things we love. But we’re not quitters (unless it’s a diet) so we’re going to give it a try!

 

Top Romance Moments That Make Us Swoony Bitches:

The Face Cup – You know that moment. The one where he holds her face as if it’s the most precious thing in the world. Because it damn well is, and he knows it and he wants to keep it. Protect it. Own it. And then he kisses her and it’s the swooniest of all swoony moments. Ever. THAT moment melts us. Every. Damn. Time.

Choking – What? When did we ever say we were hopeless romantics looking for the next Mr. Darcy type? Give us a Naz or a Javier or a Caleb. Someone that plays a little dirty. We’re not saying choke a bitch out. But a little pressure on the neck during sex is a damn fine thing.

Brow to Brow –  This one gets used in a couple of different ways. Sometimes it’s so adorable. Two people with their heads together, just breathing each other in, in love. Other times it has a darker feel. It’s a struggle for them to be near each other, to fight the feelings they have for the other person. Either way, we love it. Give us a well placed forehead to forehead and watch your rating rise.

Anal – We know y’all are thinking this was Ali’s contribution, but it was not! That girl does like a little surprise anal in books, though.  Surprise anal is NOT to be confused with accidental anal. Two totally different things! Accidental anal is not acceptable. Prep is absolutely required with this procedure. Always. ALWAYS. But when done right, all us Black Heart ladies like some butt sex.

Forehead Kiss – Does this even need commentary? I think not. If you need explanation as to why this is a swoony moment – YOU ARE READING ROMANCE WRONG.

Father Figure – There is nothing sexier than a great dad.  Or a non-dad with great dad potential. Grab the hose and point it in our direction when this shit pops up in a Romance…because it makes us smoking hot.

DP – This might be an odd choice, yes? A two sausage, one taco meal may not be the typical order for a romantic dinner. Though, we’ve read a few double penetration scenes that in no way took away from the overall romance.  Again, it just has to be done right.  We don’t like a girl who carelessly bed hops from one guy to another with no care as to their feelings or the consequences that may come.  We are, however, all for a couple secure enough in their relationship to let another in on occasion for some kinky fun.

Conversation -Let’s face it, you can’t build a meaningful relationship without dialogue. Sadly, there are books where this is lacking.  When there is great, fun, meaty dialogue between the main characters, it’s much easier to fall in love right along with them.  And who doesn’t like falling in love with people falling in love?

Wall Sex – It takes some coordination and certain size parameters to accomplish great wall sex in ‘real life’.  It’s not as easy at it seems. But we can all get hammered like a nail to the wall in a steamy romance. Yes, please!

The Jerk of Our Dreams – There is just something about the guy that pushes all your buttons (yeah, even that button). They get you all fired up in both the best and worst ways. But the angry sex is so good it makes up for everything. 😉

Alphas in Disguise – Not all Alpha males are created equal. There are some males that masquerade as a beta, and then BAM! he does or says something totally Alphaliscious (whether in bed or publicly), and you’re left wondering where the hell this side of him came from. It totally blindsides you, surprises you, but also has you wanting more of that hungry Alpha.

 

These are only a few of our favorite romance moments. Do you agree with some of them? Tell us what some of your favorite romance moments are.



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Romance Ranting: Heroines I Want To Shank

RomanceRanting

 

Heroines.  Those bitches will make or break a story.  

A good heroine makes you fall in love and become invested in their story.  She will become your best friend, and you will be her biggest supporter when she gets accidentally knocked up on that one night stand we all see coming a mile away.  Her crazy antics make you laugh and shake your head in jest, and when she cries you’ll gracefully shed a tear or twelve with her, because that’s what friends are for.

But a bad heroine?  A bad heroine will make a reader feel so stabby that you literally dream about cutting the bitch.  You’ll wish you weren’t reading an e-book and that you had the physical hardback in your hands just so you could slam the pages together and pretend it was her face that you were promptly smashing shut.

Or, well, maybe the excessive violence is just me… but we can all agree that a bad heroine can cause a no-fucks-given DNF.

I know, I know – you’re just dying to ask, “Gee whiz, Leah.   What makes you want to shank a fictional bitch?”   And that’s a valid question.  No, that’s a great question.  So I’ve decided to compile a list of things that make me commit delusional character murder.

Top 5 Worst Heroine Traits That Make Me Feel Stabby:

1 – The Ever-Forgetful Waif.  You know who I’m talking about.  The heroine that is always commenting on how she just so happened to forget to eat all damn day, because that’s normal.  Stab.  It’s the end of the day and she mentions she can’t remember the last time she actually ate something.  Stab.

I mean, I get it.  There’s some days where I’m so busy doing…whatever it is I do when I’m busy… that I forget to eat for a solid thirty minutes.  And I know some people can hold out for even longer.  But when the heroine is forgetting to eat the whole damn story, where it actually becomes a storyline?  You’re a grown woman.  Eat some Cheetos.  (I highly recommend the spicy ones.  Just trust me.)

2 – The Debbie Self-Downer.  Let me start by saying that I love broken characters.  I actually prefer them.  Ain’t nobody got time to ready about a perfect character with a perfect life.  Boooooring.  BUT – the character that’s confidence is soooo lacking that she’s practically pathetic?  Blech.

You can be broken, yet strong.  You can have insecurities, yet have strength.  But when the character spends the entire book doubting why the hot sexy alpha is after her because she’s ugly or gross or unloveable?  Fuck off.  You have a vagina and he wants it, so why are you staring in the mirror all sad and lonely?  Head up, tits out.  Own that shit.

3 – The Toddler Wearing Grown Up Clothes.  I go from calm to I’m-going-to-shank-a-bitch in 2.2 seconds when the main character is a petulant, whiny child.  If the only things that come out of her mouth is cry baby whining, I can’t.  I just can’t.  Give that bitch a pacifier and shut her up.

So you have Daddy issues, I get it.  But are you a stripper who’s addicted to coke?  No?  Well then, he didn’t fuck you up too badly.
Your high school sweetheart that you were certain would love you forever broke up with you before you started college and now you can’t trust any man?  Well, I bet he works as a car salesman and is 40 lbs over weight.  So, you should be thanking him for dumping you.

Put on those big girl chonies and move on.

4 – The Finicky Bitch.  So, there are a few levels of being finicky.  I, myself, am a self-proclaimed finicky bitch.  But, I am not the main character of a romance novel, so I can get away with it.  But do I want to read about a woman who can’t make up her fucking mind?  NO.

For the love of all things holy, you aren’t deciding between turkey or ham…  you more than likely have a hot, sexy, hung alpha who wants to get into your pants.  Why must you constantly question if he loves your or not?  He loves me, he loves me not.  He loves me, he loves me not.  He loves me….  *shank*

Seriously.  Are you getting oral?  Anal?   Multiple orgasms?  …yes?  Then he fucking loves you so knock. it. off.  No more back and forth shit where you can’t make up your mind.    “Oh no!  I can’t fall in love with him, I swore off men!  But I think I love him.  But that can’t be!  Oh Heavens!”   *stab*

5  – Well.  Fuck.  I just stared at this screen for far too long.  I was trying really hard to get five, because a list with four reasons makes me feel a little itchy…but alas, even my ranting has its limits!

Alright, those are my top four Heroine no-no’s.  Do you guys have any character traits that you just can’t stand?


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RomanceRanting

I love romance novels, stories with romantic touches, all of it.  Give me a good book with some good penetration and I’m a happy girl.  That’s all I ask for, really.

Yeah, that’s a lie.  In reality I’m a finicky bitch.  And I have pet peeves when reading… lots of them.  My fellow blogmates like to make fun of me for them, think I’m crazy on a few…but hey!  Different strokes.  We’re an eclectic bunch.

So, of course I decided to make a list of things in romance novels that make me feel stabby.  Or at the very least DNF the current read.

Leah’s Please-Stop-Doing-This-Shit-In-Books List

1 –  Fingers Tingling/Zapping When Touching For the First Time
This cliche kills me.  Let’s set the scene:  Girl is in coffee shop.  Boy walks in.  Girl sees boy for the first time and gets happy vagina tingles because he’s so hot.  Girl’s blood goes straight south and she loses all motor function and becomes a hot mess and, oh no!, drops her coffee. Or purse.  Or whatever.  She kneels down to grab the fumbled object of vagina induced insanity and so does the Adonis stranger…at the same time.  Their hands accidentally touch and KAPLOW!  Electricity jolts through their hands and sharp tingles spread through their arms like they just got a vaccine from a unicorn horn.

Puh-lease.

If a man touched my fingers and a strong bolt of lightning electrocuted my hand, I’d do one of two things.
1, I’d probably react without thinking and karate chop him in the throat, because that sounds painful.   Or,
2, I’d wonder if it was me or him who dragged their feet like the living dead when they walked.

Either way… not sexy.

2 – Man Growls
This is one that my fellow bloggers disagree with.  Those ladies love a sexy man growl.  Me?  Not so much.  Let’s set this scene up, too:  Sexy Adonis man has woman against a wall.  They’re making out like rabid animals and tearing off clothes.  The man pulls on the chick’s hair and says,  ” I want inside of you so bad I’m about to blow just thinking about it, ”  he all but growls.  Grrrrr. 

Just, no.   I’ve been with my husband twelve years and the only time he growls is when he needs an antacid.

I mean, don’t get me wrong.  I love when the heroine is with the hero in a crowded room and whispers all sexily in his ear, “I’m not wearing any chonies under this dress,”  and then pats his bum and sashays away.  The guy is instantly hard and groans in an almost painful way because his dick is so hard its gonna tear through his slacks.

Groans.  Groans are sexy.  But growls?  It makes me feel like he needs a good burping.

3 – Excessive Use Of !!
There’s nothing like a giant mood-kill in a story when the author uses an excessive amount of explanation marks when the characters are chatting.  Especially the man’s verbiage.  I call it the spirit fingers of dialogue and it makes me feel stabby.   For whatever reason, when a the male character ends all of his sentences with a big, fat “!” he instantly loses his man card.   *shrugs*  Like I said, finicky.    But here’s some examples.

“You make me so happy!”
“I love that color on you!”
“You eyes are like magical moons on a starry night!”
“I miss my Mommy!”

Okay, okay, you get the picture.  Things just aren’t sexy when it’s yelled.  Or said with spirit-finger mentality.

And when the chick is droppin’ those ! like dollars for a stripper, she’s just too peppy, and ain’t nobody got time for an always super happy heroine.  Gross.

4 – Orgasms on Command
Alright.  This one.  On-command cumming.  (Or is it coming?  I never know which verb to use here, damnit, someone please enlighten me.)  Either way, this one makes me get a good chuckle out of it.   Time to scene set:  Guy is pounding into chick.  Her legs are tied up like a pretzel, they’re both glistening from their effort.  The guy starts to growl, obvs.  When he knows he’s about to finish he says, “Baby, come with me.  I’m close.”  She pants, “Yes.”  He thrusts a couple more times and then he commands, “Now.”  He might even throw in a nip pinch, which I appreciate.

But for fuck’s sake.  Tell me seriously that if a man just looked into your eyes with his dick inside you, that all he has to say is, “Come for me.”  And bam, walls start to quake.  Because I call bullshit.  If it were that easy…well, that’s a whole different story.

Stop telling her to come and make it happen.  With fingers and tongues and even vibrators, you lazy piece of shit.

5 – Feel Them Across The Room, Without Any Eye Contact Or Knowledge They’d Be There
I wish you could see my face right now, because it portrays exactly how I feel about this.  Let me get straight into setting this scene up:  Lucy is at a party.  She’s wearing a pretty red dress and dancing with a handsome bloke named Bobby.  As they’re twirling around Lucy starts to get goosebumps and a tingle on the back of her neck.  She knows, just knows that her boss that she was fucking but broke up with has showed up to this totally random party.  She can feel him without even seeing him.

Ahem.  If someone bathes in a vat of cologne, you can smell them without seeing them.
But feeling the guy, who I bet growls, too, is just a load of crap.  Or maybe it’s left over electricity from when their hands sparked when he grabbed her accidentally dropped coffee cup.

But what I really think the moral of this one is… ladies, if you can sense he’s there, it’s probably not for a sexy reason – more like you feel danger and someone has a gun pointed at you.  So my advice?  When you feel them there, DUCK.  And fast.  Or run, that should work, too.

Well, those are my top five, but there are also some runner-ups that deserve a mention.

Runner-ups:

  • When a heroine “releases the breath she didn’t realize she was holding.”  I’m snort laughing at this.  Bitch, just breathe.  Ain’t no man so sexy that you hold your breath.  And fainting stopped being cool in the 1800’s.
  • Anal without lube.  Now that’s just being an asshole, you fucker.  A wise woman once said, “anal sex without lube is the act of a douchebag.”  And I agree.
  • I read about grown ass women.  Not children.  So please don’t put on “jammies.”  Put on pajamas, or go to bed naked for fuck’s sake.  And don’t tell me that your “tummy” hurts or I’ll karate chop your jugular, too.Alright, that’s it for me.  Do you have any Romance Rants?

 

 

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