Yep, this is gonna be a rant and a half. I sat down for a little while yesterday, piddling along the internet going – hmm, does anything look good to buy? I went to all my favorite haunts, but ended up ordering an old story from Half.com by one of my favorite romance authors and then sat wishing I had it in my hands. The author? Kathleen Harrington. The book? Cherish the Dream.
I actually do have the book. I just have to read it carefully. My copy is falling apart at the seams, literally. So, gingerly, I fell back in love with the characters. Blade Roberts – Captain and half Cheyenne Indian. Did I mention it was a historical? LOL. Theodora Gordon, botanist and blue stocking if ever there was one. Engaged to some entrepreneur who funded the mission to map over the Sierra's. Lieutenant Kearney/Fletcher/O'Fallon. It's amazing that I remembered so many of them, and all the good things about them. Why?
Because Ms. Harrington had the great ability to capture emotional drive and the story epitomizes exactly what emotional drive is. It's the fuel feeding the reader to turn pages. The angst that makes you wish the story would go on forever. It's real and you feel it as a reader.
There's some special quality that keeps you enthralled. I can say that with all honesty with this book because from moment one I read and read until it was four in the morning. An all-nighter I didn't regret in the least. And she isn't the only author who captured me that way: McNaught, Garwood, Rogers, Norton, Lindsay. They all brought their characters to life via emotional drive.
So what's happened to this aspect? I think it's more that writers have forgotten about it. That there should be more than – oh, he's hot and I want to screw him. Or, she's a babe, I wonder if she gives good head? This is what's happened. In a way, it makes me want to write better. To show the writers who load a story up with sex that I can write hot, with a plot and have my characters become memorable.
It's a tall order I've set upon myself, but then again, I've never shied away from a challenge.
Your turn, tell me what you think is lacking in stories today? Is it that emotional drive has gone by the wayside or is it that some stories aren't hot enough for you? What would you like to see in a story?
Until next week, cheers and happy writing,