Tag Archives: HEA

Waiting on the Royal Bundle of Joy

Hello my lovelies. Suze here. Welcome, or welcome back!

IMGP0687[1]Unless you’ve been living under a rock or maybe in the beautiful White Mountains of New Hampshire (where I had no cell service this past weekend, but that’s another story–and I’m not holding it against you New Hampshire-ites), you must know that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton and Prince William, are expecting a new little prince or princess any time now.

You may also remember from a prior post that I have a possibly inappropriate little thang for the Dad-to-be, but again, that’s another story (click here). Bald(ing) is beautiful, baby.

I’ll admit to being a royal watcher. I was a kid when Charles married Diana–I’ll never forget watching the royal wedding and marveling at the biggest darn dress I’d ever seen–and the mystique and pageantry fascinated me. I’ve followed their sons (no, not in a creepy stalker way. I don’t live close enough to them to do that!) since they were babies. And of course I watched the wedding of William and commoner Kate. Those two seem to genuinely love each other, so, like any good romance novel junkie, I hope they’ll get their Happily Ever After.

Without further ado, here are my predictions about the Royal BOJ:

slurpeeDance-slurpee[1]Birth date: Today, July 11, 2013. I’m rooting for 7/11 because I want the young prince/princess to be able to get free Slurpees at 7-Eleven on his/her birthday. That will leave more money in the royal budget for fascinators (princess) or ascots (prince).

Weight:     Hmmm, we like the number 7 around here, but Kate and Wills are both tall and I’m going to guess there’s a decent-sized baby in that bump. So I predict 8 pounds, 7 ounces.

Length:    21 inches = three times seven! Coincidence? I think not.

Eye Color: Dark blue, like most all babies.

Hair:   Yes, lots of hair, dark and straight like Kate’s.

Name–Boy: George Albert James. I know James is the current favorite for first name, but I’m going to go with George, the name of Queen Elizabeth’s father. Albert of course was Queen Victoria’s husband. I don’t think we’ll see Charles or Philip in there.

Name–Girl: Alexandra Elizabeth Victoria Diana. This was a tough one. Alexandra is the favorite for first name, and it’s a pretty, traditional yet modern-sounding name so I’m going to go with it. Since this year marks the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s coronation, the baby will have almost certainly have Elizabeth as a middle name as a tribute. Victoria because she was the longest reigning British monarch and it’s also quite a pretty (even if Victoria wasn’t, um, too cute). Diana is a no-brainer for a middle name–but too controversial to be a first name.

1223673[1]Sex:  Drum roll, please! Girl. I think we’re having a girl.

All right, everybody. Be bold and give us your predictions. Whoever gets the most right will get a shoutout on next week’s blog!

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Nice Day For A White Wedding

Hello, friends, Susannah here. 

Have you checked the television listings lately?  Do you know how many wedding shows there are?  Neither do I, but here’s a partial list:  Say Yes to the Dress. Wedding Cake ChallengeAnd my personal favorite, My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding.  This last is a show about Travelers (Gypsy) culture in Ireland, and it is absolutely fascinating.   And the movies: Four Weddings and a Funeral, The Wedding Date, The Wedding Singer.  That list could go on and on and on.

This past weekend I attended my brother’s wedding.  Now this wedding broke with tradition in a lot of ways.  The couple did not have a large budget, so the nuptials and reception were a very small outdoor affair — just family and a few friends attended.  The bride’s family, for many reasons, was not able to assist her with the preparations, so my mother, my sisters, and I stepped in to help.  Mom hemmed the bride’s lovely, simple gown.  Among the rest of us we prepared a dinner, attached balloons to the tent that our menfolk set up, arranged tables and chairs for the guests, and created a head table for the bride and groom.   

When I found out there were no flowers, not even a bouquet for the bride, I thought, Not on my watch!  Unacceptable!  So I grabbed one sister and a pair of scissors and we denuded Mom’s flower garden.  Some white phlox and Shasta daisies arranged in Mason jars tied with ribbons in various shades of blue, and we had some lovely table decorations.  A dozen roses with baby’s breath from the supermarket were transformed into an arm bouquet by placing the stems in a wet paper towel inside a plastic sandwich bag, then covering the mess with a wrap of white ribbon.   I think it came out pretty well, and the bride was delighted.  After the ceremony, instead of a first dance, the newlyweds sang a first song to each other via Karaoke machine.  You know something?  That’s what they wanted, and it worked.  Sorry you missed my three sisters and me singing our theme song, Tammy Wynette’s Stand By Your Man, with our new sister-in-law.  Really.  Ya shoulda been there.  (And no, don’t ask.  None of us can remember when or why that song became our standard.  It just is.  Here’s a hipper version, if you need it.)

Why are we fascinated by weddings?  Same reason we read romance novels.  I think it’s because a wedding is so full of love, hope, and promise — the first day of a Happily Ever After that we get to relive with every new bride and groom.  

Tell us your favorite wedding anecdote — if you don’t have one of your own, then appropriate somebody else’s.   We Scribes love Love!

Fiction Vs. Reality

Hello all! Katy Lee here.

It has been said the difference between fiction and reality is that fiction has to make sense. But when writing romance, we are told we have to make sure there is a happily ever after. (HEA) Even though, in reality, no one is promised one.

I recently watched a cake decorating contest on The Food Network Challenge. Romance Writers of America’s own president, Dorien Kelly, sat on the judge’s panel. The participants were given the task of creating a book cover for a romantic story they created themselves. The challenge came when they had to design and create a cake that reflected their story. So they not only had to show their ability to tell a story, but they also had to show their expertise as cake decorators.

The cakes were beautiful. Beyond beautiful. Hundreds of butterflies covered one of them! Very cool! But in my humble opinion, there was one, in particular, that stood out above the rest. It was a cake made to look like a gigantic hardbound book. A chivalrous knight in shining armor with his sword drawn, stood beside it. His silver sword tip even dripped with a little blood from his recent kill.

A true hero.

But as beautiful as her cake was, she lost the competition because her heroine died in the end. In fact, I think the hero killed her. Yikes! But the point is, there was no HEA. This story wouldn’t fly in a romance market. It doesn’t matter how handsome that knight is under all that armor if the reader is left in mourning.

Even if the story is realistic.

The Unlocked Secret: As writers, it would be nice to be able to write that book of our heart, but if it doesn’t meet the needs (and requirements) of the market, we won’t be able to sell it. Realism is important, but in romance a reader will only come back for more if you leave them happy. When people read, they read to escape reality.

Have you ever read a book that  left you angry or in mourning? Did you run out and buy more from that author? Or are you now hesitant to try another? How do you want to leave your readers?