HEA — My Drug of Choice

The first romance I ever read was a gothic – Menfreya in the Morning by Victoria Holt. I was in 8th grade, and didn’t realize at the time that gothic romance was a genre. I just thought Victoria Holt was awesome, and read all of her books that I could get my hands on.

I didn’t read the quintessential romance, Pride and Prejudice, until after I graduated from college, and then almost by accident – I was visiting my cousin in Indianapolis and pulled the Holy Grail of Romance off her bookshelf because I had nothing to do while she was at work other than read (and try to keep the crazy landlady from soaking the inside of the apartment when she hosed down her aluminum siding every day). Again, no clue about the genre. I just thought Austen was fabulous and read all her books.

HEA_heart_blueDitto Georgette Heyer.

At that time – pre-Kindle, and heck, pre-Amazon – I spent most of my reading hours switching between science fiction, fantasy, and mystery, until I got a Regency hankering and re-read P & P and the entire Heyer Regency oeuvre in alternating waves.

I should have gotten a glimmer of a clue, however — even then, regardless of what point I was at in my Circle of Literary Life, the stories that got the most re-read traction always had a romantic subplot or at the very least romantic elements. My craving for the HEA dopamine hit had already begun, and like any addict, I wanted my fix.

Then came Kindle and free books and Smart Bitches, Trashy Books bundles and holy crap! An epiphany!

Suzanne Brockmann. Jennifer Crusie. Loretta Chase. Mary Balogh. I binged on romance, and my writing projects shifted genres as well.

Then a chance remark by fellow Rose City Romance Writer Cathryn Cade sent me to Josh Lanyon and I discovered a whole new world – M/M romance.

Let the binge reading re-commence.

Amy Lane, KA Mitchell, Damon Suede, Jordan Castillo Price. So many wonderful authors. So many fabulous love stories.

All of the romances – whether M/F or M/M, contemporary or historical, paranormal or romantic comedy – deliver that same rush on the downhill slide into happily-ever-after.



Posted on April 28, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Dear Janes,

    Y’all need a Google+ share button on your site.



  2. EJ,

    Heh, heh, book pusher here, thrilled to have enticed another innocent victim–Wait! I mean reader! Yeah, that’s what I meant.

    Having read your fabulous MM romance ‘Northern Light’ (with a ghost, no less!) I’m so glad you had all those grand genre influences in your reading past. They definitely flavor your writing.

    Looking forward to more stories from your pen. Now, can I sell you on a little self-publishing?



    • Aww, thanks, Cathryn! That means a lot, coming from someone I admire as much as I do you. I’ll try to “pay the pushing forward” and pull more readers into the romance vortex!


  3. Binge-worthy authors (and series)… now you’re talking! Funny how we can all reflect on those early HEA glimmers 🙂


  4. Growing up, I read Victoria Holt as well, in Swedish. 😉


  5. I’m not addicted. I could quit anytime I wanted. I don’t neeeeeeed an HEA… But why WOULD I give that up?!


  6. A fellow Victoira Holt fan. Yay! I remember Menfreya in the Morning and all her earlier books. I love your title “HEA – My Drug of Choice.” Me too. No matter what torture my characters go through I know they will have an HEA. And that reflects my personal life outlook too. Though there are those days when I wish the HEA would come faster. 🙂


  1. Pingback: HEA — My Drug of Choice | E.J. Russell

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