Celebrate International Women’s Day With Our Wonderful Authors
by Dianne Moggy, Vice President, Romance Fiction Editorial
We recently celebrated the publication of Marie Ferrarella’s 300th romance novel with Harlequin. Colton Baby Conspiracy, a Harlequin Romantic Suspense, was just published in January. Yes, that’s right, number 300. And although this milestone is unprecedented, Harlequin has had the honor of publishing and partnering with an additional 539 authors who have each written more than 25 books for us. And despite those numbers, we’re always looking for new writers—in the past five years we have published 160 debut authors.
Given the number of titles we’ve published in the past 70+ years, it shouldn’t be surprising that we have so many authors writing for us, and so many who have written an impressive number of books (it’s also completely awesome!). Of course, those of us in the industry know that in order to build a readership and a career, series romance authors generally need to be prolific, writing multiple novels a year. And beyond the obvious necessity of being a good storyteller and a fan of the genre, they also need to be curious, tenacious and strong.
Romance is, after all, a genre where the heroine rules—she’s the one in control and the story is her journey. Whether she was an inexperienced nanny in 1950 or running a global company in 2020, the romance heroine has always made her own choices and the decisions about her sexual and romantic future. Our authors have continually showcased her strength and they’ve ensured that the heroine’s story has reflected the changing roles women have embraced across the decades.
Our authors own lives have also reflected those changes. Their backgrounds are as eclectic as the backgrounds of the heroines in their books and increasingly they come from communities and cultures that bring diverse perspectives to their stories. Our authors live in 14 different countries on four different continents, their ages vary from early 20s to 75+, some are married and have children and grandchildren, others are happily single. Some write in their spare time after a day devoted to another career, some write full-time. Those other careers have ranged from homemakers, teachers, nurses, military officers and pilots to scientists, attorneys, artisans, business leaders, rappers and farmers. Some plot their stories from beginning to end (the plotters) and some fly by the seat of their pants and know only the ending (the pantsers). Many follow a regular writing schedule, needing to write a set number of words per day and others write when they’re feeling their most creative. But I believe there is one constant that hasn’t changed from the beginning and one that they all share. I believe all of our authors write because of their love of the genre and the power of the positive messages of hope and happily-ever-afters their stories deliver to readers around the world (in 23 different languages).
We know, in fact, from the fan letters our authors have shared and from our own experiences reading our books (I fell in love with romance novels in my early teens) and interacting with readers, that romance novels make a positive difference. They take people to a world with the guarantee of a happy ending and they provide an escape from a world that is often hectic and challenging. Our authors tell us this is the pay-off. And it’s also the reason to celebrate our incredible family of Harlequin authors for so successfully delivering “that Harlequin feeling!”
If you haven’t experienced That Harlequin Feeling for yourself, please visit ThatHarlequinFeeling.com to download two free ebooks today.