Jul 22 2010 6:17pm

Because It’s Shiny

I’ve been asked why I’m drawn to paranormal romance—and I’ve been asked this a lot.

Now some of my fellow romance writers have these wonderful answers…the intrigue, the alpha males, the mythos…

Me? Well. It’s shiny. Not literally. But in a story-teller’s sense. Ideas abound. And for me, that sort of equals shiny.

I’m easily distracted. Very. Easily. Distracted. Have you seen the movie Up? Doug? If so, you know where I’m going with this…squirrel!

That’s me.

Now I write in a lot of different romance subgenres—a lot of my titles are erotic romance, although not all. A lot of my titles have paranormal aspects, although not all. But not all of my paranormal books are vampires, or shapeshifters. Some have ghosts. Witches. Psychics.

And that’s the appeal of paranormal romance for me.

I can indulge my inner love of all things shiny on a fairly regular basis. Because paranormal is so broad. It can be a vampire. Or it can be a werewolf. Or it can be a psychic. It can be really, really out there, or it can be just this side of normal—there’s always going to be something that will catch my attention. And that’s what I need…shiny ideas to catch and hold my attention, because when I get distracted... I’ve mentioned that, right?

That why I don’t just write paranormal, why I don’t just write contemporary, or romantic suspense. And the cool thing about paranormal is that even when I’m writing paranormal, there are so many different ways to break down the paranormal romance genre, I don’t have to worry about getting bored. There’s always, always, always going to be a shiny new idea just waiting for me to find it.
So that’s why I like paranormal romance.

What about you? Does it work for you? Why? Why not?

Shiloh Walker has been writing since she was a kid. She fell in love with vampires with the book Bunnicula and has worked her way up to the more…ah…serious vampire stories. She loves reading and writing anything paranormal, anything fantasy, and nearly every kind of romance. Once upon a time she worked as a nurse, but now she writes full time and lives with her family in the Midwest.

This article is part of Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy Month: ‹ previous | index | next ›
John Massey
1. subwoofer

John Massey
2. subwoofer

not really sure what para- romance is. I am somewhat of a throwback to the 60's for guys, John Wayne is my role-model. Maybe one paranormal romance that is on the verge of blossoming is between SpongeBob and Patrick. I was thinking it was a very good friendship, but after the movie and seeing Patrick in spiked heels and fishnets, I began to have my doubts.

JP Ikäheimonen
3. Oldtribe

I definitely like 'gritty' better than 'shiny'. Maybe that's why paranormal romances don't work for me.

I wonder if that correlates on a wider scale - people who prefer shiny to gritty also prefer romances to science fiction, and vice versa?
lanyo lanyo
4. lanyo
I generally dry-heave to Romance, but I can handle it if it Is paranormal. It gives the story something else, not just the relationship(s) to make the story move forward.
Shiloh Walker
5. shiloh_walker
oldtribe... *G* actually, the shiny thing is just short-hand for 'distractibility'.

There's a bumper sticker that reads: I'm easily distracted by shiny objects... *G* Not that it really needs to be shiny. It just needs to grab my attention.

I actually love a good gritty story-that's part of why I love certain UF writers. Granted, I'm drawn in by those who can weave a romantic thread into the story, although it's not necessary for me to love it. I'm just a romantic at heart.

But basically 'shiny' is just 'different' for me. Paranormal romance doesn't have to be (and I honestly prefer it NOT to be) brooding alpha males, swooning, simpering females and white picket fences and wedding dresses... if that works for a reader, that's totally fine for me-I'm not one to knock somebody's reading choices.

It just doesn't hold appeal for me.

I want a couple flawed people-I want the heroine to be able to hold her own against the hero, I want some smart-alec humor, I want a real story, and preferably something other than "You're my chosen mate and we'll fight until you see otherwise".

There is plenty of that in paranormal romance.
Ruth X
6. RuthX
Because it's shiny is a good answer. :) For me it's the general emphasis on witty banter, the broad variety of topics, the question of how they'll approach "canon" concerning various paranormal least that's what comes up off the top of my head.

I enjoy some Regencies too, but perhaps paranormal has the advantage in that even though it's sort-of been done before, it hasn't been done nearly as much yet.

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