Candelit dinners...champagne and chocolate...bouquets of roses...petals strewn across a bed...sensual music playing in the background...satin and lace and scented massage oil...
Sounds pretty romantic, right?
Maybe in real life...but what about in fiction? Many readers would find the above scenario...well, kind of boring.
Where's the tension?
Where's the conflict?
Where's the danger?
Two people on the run...depending on each other for survival...clinging to each other anywhere they can...a celebration of still being alive...
Now that gets my heart pumping and engages my imagination. Okay, so maybe I'm a little unusual, but I'm certainly not alone. If I were, there wouldn't be so many bestseller books or blockbuster movies or popular television shows that combine crime and romance.
My former writing partner used to laugh at me because I was willing to watch any movie that combined love and danger, no matter how bad. She was right. I still do. There's something about romance in the midst of murder and mayhem that gets my blood pumping. It was that fascination of chills and thrills that led me to write romantic suspense.
The world has changed in the past twenty-five years that I've been writing. It's become a much scarier place than it used to be. Violent crime seems to be everywhere. That six degrees of separation is narrowing and four years ago hit me dead on. Now I write with a greater need for justice and a story that speaks to the heart than ever before.
If real life is all too filled with unspeakable crimes, then I want my fiction-movies, television, books-to give me justice and give me love to balance the evil in that fictional world. I want to believe it can happen.
Happy Valentine's Day
In memory of my father, Walter Pinianski, buried four years ago on Valentine's Day after being murdered by a home intruder who still hasn't gone to trial.