Finally, we have a writers’ festival with actual romance authors in the program! If you’re at the Byron Bay Writers’ Festival this weekend, make sure you check out tomorrow’s panel, Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance, where local celebrity comedian Mandy Nolan chats with Amy Andrews and Jennifer St George and explores the world of romance writing and what it’s like to be a contemporary romance author.
From the press release:
Andrews, whose recent novel Holding Out For A Hero won Australian Romance Readers Association Best Contemporary Romance award, believes the key to longevity in publishing is diversification. ‘Authors have more choice than ever before. Digital publishing, self publishing, traditional publishing. And you know what? You’d be mad if you didn’t explore all your options.’
Local author Jennifer St George is thrilled to be teaming up with Nolan again. ‘Mandy launched my book Sweet Seduction at Mary Ryan’s last year. I laughed so hard, I could barely answer her hilarious questions. She got people so excited, the book sold out that night.’
Nolan can’t wait to talk heroes, heroines, love and sex. ‘Romance is to love what pasta is to sauce. It’s a delicious combination, but in the end too much makes you fat.’ The author of Boyfriends We’ve All Had (and Shouldn’t Have), Nolan writes about ‘real ordinary’ love. ‘I tell the truth about love. That’s why it’s funny. Most of us never really tell the truth.’
‘People have told me that my book is really honest — that I have been very frank — almost disarmingly so,’ says Nolan. ‘I find that a bit shocking. People were quite comfortable with Fifty Shades of Grey — a book fantasising about bondage and being tied up by a bloke in a suit — it was sold in Coles and read by women as young as 14 and older than my grandmother. I don’t get it. I don’t even mention sex dungeons. I don’t have one. I have a two car garage. It led me to this most astounding conclusion, that writing about pornographised S&M was more easily accepted than writing about ordinary, flawed and often hopeless sexual encounters.’
If you’re planning to attend the session and would like to post a round-up for Book Thingo, please let me know!