Monday, August 18, 2008

Read Romance Or Perish

One of the byproducts of attending RWA is that I usually walk away with a new "girl crush." Can't help it, I just do. I hear some author give a speech or I have a private conversation, and a little piece of me falls in love.

This year it was Stephanie Laurens.

For the record, I've never read Laurens. Honestly, never. The fact that both of her series are now a gazillion books long has a little something to do with it.

But I was interested in the fact that she was the luncheon speaker for RWA's Librarian Event. For one, I know she lives on the other side of the world (Australia), so her being at the conference was a pretty big deal. All those authors that flew thousands and thousands of miles - my hats off to you! The jet-lag would have reduced me to a simpering idiot. Also, I have a coworker who adores Laurens' books, so if I could score an autographed copy of something for her it would be all good.

What I didn't plan on was how incredible her speech was or how bloody smart she is. I mean, really smart.

Not that the majority of romance authors are uneducated morons (because they aren't), but Laurens' speech was titled, "Read Romance Or Perish: A Biological Perspective On Romance Novels."

I'm dead serious here people.

And for the record? It frickin' rocked my socks.

RWA did record the librarian event panels, but podcasts aren't up yet. Lucky for us, Laurens has posted a transcript of her speech on her web site. Go forth, and let your own girl crush develop. I've had to hold myself back from rushing to the nearest Borders and buying all copies of her books currently in stock. The only reason I haven't? The Boyfriend and I have to eat. His motto is "Eat Food Or Perish."


Tracy said...

I've never read her either, I just may have to. Now I'm off to read the transcript.

Jessica said...

I've enjoyed her books for a while and I look forward to reading her speech. Welcome to the party. :)

sula said...

heh. i am just dying to see how you like Devil's Bride. Classic romance that one. :)

Liz said...

That is fascinating article/speech. Thanks for posting the link. I've always enjoyed her books! Completely understand the girl crush.

Bev(QB) said...

Wendy, just go buy Devil's Bride. Do NOT borrow it though, because you will find yourself re-reading it from time to time to remind yourself why you read romance.

Just trust me, Devil's Bride is closer to perfect than any other romance book I've ever read (and be glad you won't have to see the unfortunate back cover pic from the earlier editions :shudder:). In fact, I think you are depriving yourself by NOT reading it.

Now I'm off to read the transcript. And I'm still in awe that you got to meet her.

little alys said...

Her transcipt had a very interesting take on the biological situation via romance novels. Love a lot of her older romances and going to read her new ones...eventually. My favorite is Scandal's Bride. And if nothing else, she's so nice!

Wendy said...

Bev: Actually, one of the freebies they gave us at the Librarian Event was a copy of Devil's Bride (the reprint, so no scary back cover to look at). I know many, many readers who consider it a classic - and I always said if I ever read Laurens, that would probably be the book I would pick up. And now? I own it.

BookBukNut said...

Wow, I don't read romances but I may have to after reading that transcript. Very cool.