Love on the Brain

Hello my wonderful friends. I have romance on the brain and I feel the need to talk about it a little bit today. A good Twitter friend of mine wrote a post about how if she could go back in time and tell her younger self some things about the book world. One of the things she noted on her list was she would tell her younger self that there’s nothing to be embarrassed about reading romance. That stood out to me the most cause it made me think back to my younger self picking up that first romance novel and opening up my world to one of my now favorite genres but how if anyone asked what I was reading, I’d hedge a little. By hedging, I mean I would tell the title of the book but when someone asked me what it was about, I would talk about everything except the romance part of it. I also definitely steered clear from covers that had Fabio sweeping a woman off his feet. (I’m a little biased though there cause I hate faces on book covers). But who doesn’t like looking at a hot, musclely man?? Not something I personally can deny.. (looking at you Idris Elba!)

Everything I’ve ever heard about romance novels was that they’re trashy, only old ladies read romance novels, and it’s all porn. Back then, I didn’t necessarily believe this myself but I would always feel like I could hear other people just thinking these things. Definitely made it hard to read in public in general cause now you’re just wondering what people are thinking about your choice of book. I can’t pinpoint exactly when I stopped caring but one day I think someone asked me what I was reading and I proudly looked them in the eye and said the title and that it was a romance novel and yes, there were sex scenes in it. I can’t remember the reaction of the person and obviously I didn’t care considering it only made me voracious for more romance novels.

I have to state here that I’m seriously a romantic. I see love everywhere. I will play matchmaker if the opportunity presents itself. I stare at my husband with stars and rainbows and glitter in my eyes all day long and yes, I like sex. I’m human. There’s nothing wrong with that. I don’t understand why romance and sex have to be trashy. It’s a natural human process. Every living thing, mostly mammals, have sex in some form or fashion. It’s in our DNA because of the need to procreate. But what’s wrong with reading about a love affair between two imaginary people? Why is going into detail so bad? It’s not porn. People like to say erotica is porn but it’s not. Porn is porn; different category entirely. And see now that’s got me thinking, why is it okay to watch sex on television but reading about is an outrage?? Automatic stigmatization is just wrong to me. I pretty much compare this to stereotypes made about groups of people. Is it not the same thing?

Obviously, to each their own. If reading about romance, falling in love and having sex makes you uncomfortable, I’m in no way bashing you for that. There’s nothing wrong with that either but to be cruel about other people who enjoy it is just wrong. We shouldn’t have to hide something we enjoy you know? Oh and by the way, the romance genre dominates ebook sales; 61% to be exact. Ebooks definitely make it easier to read whatever you want in secret but seriously, don’t ever be ashamed about what you’re reading especially when it comes to love. (I’m hopeless. I know. πŸ™‚ )

Do you read romance novels? Are you embarrassed to admit it? Do you agree or disagree with anything I said? Let me know in the comments below! (Don’t be shy!)

19 thoughts on “Love on the Brain

  1. Excellent article. This is a subject near and dear. I too had the same hesitation when people asked what I was reading as a young teen. Now I boast about my romance novel choices. There is nothing wrong with wanting that feel good story, to get that burst of romance feeling chemicals, (Dopamine and oxytocin to name a couple) that makes us happy. For me, writing Romance and erotica is the ultimate high. There will always be those that feel their own views and values are the only views and values, too bad for them that way of thinking is becoming less appreciated by society as we stand up and say, ‘why do you care? Get over yourself.’ or something like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Cim! I agree with you completely! It’s scientifically proven the chemicals we generate when we feel that great happiness and love is one of the strongest contributors. Yes, I love your writings! They give me all the feels which is something to look forward to each day. Oh yes, there will always be the people who think their views are superior and you are totally right; as we move into the future it’s less appreciated more and more. I love that about future generations!

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  2. I’m a ridiculous fan for love too. And I’ve never really been ashamed about romance books per sa, but rather raunchy ones. I remember in high school when I used to read Mills and Boon books, one after the other. People would look at us funny cause the covers were just sex oriented. But not all romance has sex. But that’s just a stereotype we have to live with, I guess. But it’s fine. Let them think whatever πŸ˜€

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    1. Agreed, not all romance is sex. You’re right. But the ones that have sex, there’s nothing wrong with them. They should be celebrated! And I’m totally for raunchy if it’s written good. That’s where the word trashy comes in for me. It’s trashy not because of the romance but because it was so terribly written it just ruined my romance feels, haha.

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  3. Oh, I love a good romance! However, I do remember feeling weird about checking out Fifty Shades of Grey at my local library. Why? I don’t know really. I mean, the books are based on a ‘relationship’ that all in all isn’t ‘just’ sex. For some reason, some people say it’s trash though.

    I don’t see a thing wrong with romance novels. The only type I don’t like reading are BDSM and those that involve gang sex if you know what I mean. To each his own though!! ❀ Great topic, Nel. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fifty Shades is trash but only because the writing is bad and it was a terrible attempt at a BDSM relationship turned love. There are just better authors for that genre than E.L. James, haha, or at least authors who get the books proofread a few times before publishing.

      I do draw the line at gang sex but I’m okay with polygamy or open relationships as long as it’s stated up front. I also draw the line at like bestiality sex when it’s like an alien and a human or a centaur and a human. Oddly enough though I’m okay if it’s a shape shifter cause they have a distinct human form and animal form. Is that weird?? Hahaha

      Glad you enjoyed the post πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m one of those people that cringe at the thought of reading a romance novel! Sorry! The love at first sight trope, or even the “i don’t like you but I fall in love with you later” trope. Can’t do it! I’d rather a good murder mystery…does that make me evil? lol

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, nope. To each their own for sure as long as you don’t think negatively of those who love the genre. There are definitely romance tropes I hate like love triangles, can’t stand them! I love murder mysteries as well though even ones with subtle romance in them ;). Aren’t books great?? Thanks for stopping by Jo-Ann! Always a pleasure ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I read everything. From trash to Shakespeare to scifi to romance to poetry to blogs. Every genre has something to offer. What I can’t stand to read is badly written stuff or badly edited. It’s the editor in me, maybe.

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  6. If you’ve been following my blog for a while then you know I love love. I love all forms of romance whether it’s erotica or if it just happens to pop into some other genre I love it. I’ve never been ashamed to admit that I love romance. There was one time where I was reading Fifty Shade of Grey while I was at work when my boss asked me what I was reading. I told her but then she asked me what it was about and I couldn’t bring myself to go into detail about it so I just said I don’t really know much because I just started it (which was true) and then I mentioned that it was a romance but that’s as much as I could say. I have since reread that trilogy multiple times because I really liked it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! I love hearing this so much! I’m going to have to follow you on Goodreads so I can see all your reviews. I am right there with you. I mean, I feel like you can’t go wrong with a great romance especially when you need a pick me up. I read the Fifty Shades trilogy. I liked the concept but I thought the writing was so bad. That hasn’t prevented me from seeing the movies however, haha, cause I definitely plan to see Fifty Shades Freed on February 9th.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. hahaha oh I so relate to hedging!! I’ve done that before! (I don’t really like people on covers most of the time either, so I’m with you there- except in exceptional circumstances πŸ˜‰ ) Amen to this post! I’m very much a romantic too πŸ™‚ Nothing wrong with reading romance novels or having sex in them! (I’ll only complain if it’s badly done lol πŸ˜‰ ) I don’t know why people have to bash people for liking it. And I have to say, I love ebooks cos that way *I can read whatever I like* and no one gets to judge! πŸ˜€ It’s very useful on the tube πŸ˜‰ Brilliant post!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “except in exceptional circumstances* hehe I love that and yes! You get me! Agreed! It’s the badly written kind of romance that makes me cringe where the good written kind makes me feel…. πŸ˜‰ Agreed in the ebooks too. That’s probably why romance sales have skyrocketed so much. Thank you! Glad you enjoyed this post! 😁

      Liked by 2 people

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