Romance writers have been writing romantic novels for centuries. One of the earliest romance writers was Samuel Richardson, who wrote the novel Pamela, in the mid 1770’s. As with most contemporary romance stories, Pamela, was written from the perspective of the female protagonist. The love story unfolds to reveal the longings and passions of Pamela’s courtship. The romance genre continued to develop when, during the 1800’s, Jane Austin wrote the novel, Pride and Prejudice. This spell-binding romantic novel maintains a timeless quality and is often revered as the quintessence of romance stories.
During the1920’s the romance writer, Georgette Heyer, set the stage for the writing of historical romance novels in the UK. In the 1930’s, Mills and Boon began to publish a line that has evolved into the genre of what we now know as contemporary romance. These early publications were released by Harlequin Enterprises Ltd, a publishing corporation that began to mass produce and sell romance stories to the general public in North America. In 1972, The Flower and the Flame, by Kathleen Woodiwiss, firmly establishment modern romance writing in the US and Canada.
Romance writing and reading thrived in the 1980’s as more romance series and single-line romance novels were introduced into the market.
Today, when romance novels constitute the largest and most readily received genre, the romance industry is thriving. In 2004, 55% of all paperback books were written by romance writers. Contemporary romantic novels include a rich and varied array of characters and are set in every type of setting imaginable! The stories range from modest first love to the steamy throes of adult desire!
Contemporary romance writers come from all walks of live. Many romance stories have been written at the kitchen table, while infants nap in their bedrooms, as well as on the sunny beaches of the Caribbean! ! Today’s romance market is as rich and varied as the passions and pursuits of the romance writers.