Meet My Muse

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Welcome to Sin

I am not the most well-read person in the world. With working 40 hours a week, having a fairly active social life (considering I'm in bed by 10 every night), and my writing, I haven't managed to carve out regular reading time like I should. Since Nationals, and even a little before, I've been trying harder to fit regular reading into my schedule. Especially since I brought home an outrageous number of new books from Nationals.

That said, I'm curious if any of my fellow contemporary romance readers have noticed the same trend that's caught my eye lately. If I'm noticing a trend, I'm either picking out just the right books to cause a trend on my shelves, or I'm late to the party and somebody's gonna be saying, "Well, duh, Honey, all the publisher spotlights at Nationals pointed that out," in the comment trail. :)

How many books have you read and/or noticed lately that have a town called "Mystery," "Sin," Temptation," etc.? Books where the town has character defined by its name. Think along the lines of Jennifer Crusie's Welcome to Temptation a few years back (which I thoroughly enjoyed, by the way).

In my admittedly limited experience, these books seem to have more than an identifying town name in common. Most have a town bible-beater or moral equivalent, a prominent citizen has a secret about a murder that it takes an outsider to solve, and each of the town residents are just a hair past quirky, making them more of a caricature than character. It's not a standard romance recipe, or is it?

I was discussing this with Mr. Honey this morning, and he pointed out that it almost sounded cliched. So it made me wonder. At what point does an idea go from original to cliche? We watched Casablanca a few weeks back, and there's one scene near the end where every line Humphrey Bogart says has now become a cliche for something or other. Was it cliched back then? Or was it new and original, just so darn catchy it was bounch to become cliched? Is this where towns of "Problem," "Secrets," and "Confusion" are bound to be categorized in a few short years? Or are they already there?

What do you think? Have you noticed trends in other genres that make you scratch your head and rethink your current wip? Or rethink which books you pick up on the bookshelf? Curious minds want to know. :)

Posted by Honey :: 7:37 AM :: 6 Comments:

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