New development: I’ve been thinking. A lot honestly and mostly about WW. The rewrite has been giving me a headache and I think I’ve figured out why.
I’ve never felt comfortable with using the term “romance” in reference to WW because I didn’t think I developed the romance between the protagonists enough to use the term. After thinking about it, I figured this was a problem to be during the revision process or maybe if I focused on another aspect of the story the romance would flourish on its own.
However, after extensive thinking and talking with June (although I doubt this was the direction she intended), I’m beginning to think WW should be in a different genre altogether. Yes, there is an inevitable romance between Will and Sophia. But, there is also a subplot with the murderer/assassin. This subplot is in reality what forced their meeting and is really the only thing that binds them together. If Will had the chance he would forget about the case and move on because his main goal is the safety of England. If not for the “case” and constant presence of danger, I doubt his feelings for Sophia would have developed. They’re both extremely stubborn characters and Sophia is particularly introverted.
That said, I believe WW and subsequent novels in the series, would be more mystery thrillers than romance. I could be wrong, but I would appreciate your thoughts.
Also, the whole “Steamy is in” (told to me by June quoting Mandy Hubbard) is true. As much as I would love to be a ‘genre bender’ and have a book published without explicit sex scenes, it doesn’t look like it would happen anytime soon. One, my writing is definitely not good enough to be published yet, and two, we live in a sexualized society. Although I like writing in a period where the sexual lives of others are often kept private, the females are naïve until their wedding night, and there is a rigid formality, that is all irrelevant in modern times. Modern readers like hot, steamy, often explicit, scenes that delve into every inch of a character’s life. We live in a time where everybody wants to know everything about everyone.
Oh, and there is also the whole thing…”Romance” is defined as a plot where the main focus is the developing relationship between characters. WW, however, the main focus is the “case” and the “romance” is a byproduct.