I’m a romance nut. I started off reading teen romances by the time I was 13 or 14 years old. I eventually graduated to adult romances. The ones I like the most are historical romances set in the UK somewhere, but mostly in London. I also like to read historical romances set in the US. Once in a while I will read a contemporary romance. The point is, I love my romance books.
So, when I had my first book idea pop into my head I was sure that I’d be writing a romance. I began to write my book. What I noticed right away is that the book did have a romance in it but that really wasn’t the focus. The primary focus of the book is about my main female character and the tragedy that befalls her. The problem was that I was so new to writing I had no earthly clue the genre I was writing in.
I started to hear about women’s fiction (WF) but really didn’t know what qualified as WF. Then someone finally explained to me what WF is. The basic gist is that if the main story can stand alone without the romance, then it is WF. However, if you take the romance out and you don’t have much of a story left, then it’s a romance. I had my “Awe Ha” moment. My book was so WF.
The interesting part, or at least I thought, is that I didn’t read WF very often if at all. And we are told as writer’s to read in the genre that you write, yet here I sat writing in it and understanding it anyway. I feel blessed this genre does come naturally to me.
I found out about a year or so ago that both Francine Rivers and Emily Griffin are actually WF writers although I had no clue. I thought Emily’s books were romances and when I read Francine’s book Redeeming Love it felt like it read more like a WF novel than romance. But now that I better understand what WF is I can see how both of these writer’s books are and I love their work.