Saturday, November 22, 2008

I'm In Yur Blog, Savin' Yur Bacon


KMont of Lurv a la Mode here – hi, folks! When Tracy emailed to ask if I would guest blog, she said I’d be saving her bacon. Since I’m a stalwart advocate for bacon, I didn’t mind in the least. I was going to get the post done by Friday night and swoop in first thing Saturday morning and post like a pro.

Except the post did not get written Friday night. Short, yet boring story; I’ll spare you fine folks.

So, dang, it’s a lot harder to come up with an interesting post on another blog that’s not my own (not that I’m that thrilling on mine either), but what got me thinking this morning as I woke up though was how my reading habits change over the years and I was wondering if this has been the case for other readers out there. I remember my first real romance (I’d dabbled in some kids lit and V.C. Andrews – hello, mentally scarred with that stuff) as this torrid, dare I say, bodice ripper. It was probably written sometime in the 70s and it was one of those sheik/white harem girl routines. I could not put it down and was all of fourteen or so, so I felt breathlessly bad for opening its pages, a real deviant. I really wish I could remember the title and author because even if my views had changed about it today, I’d love to have it on my shelf for old times sakes.

After that one though, I had to have more such similar books and storylines and still have a fondness for the ‘ole sheiks. From there I discovered historical romances. I started going through phases, where all I wanted to read was that one certain genre or subgenre. Mainstream fantasy. Whoo doggie, mainstream science fiction! But at the core of those was a tiny bit of romance, so I think romance has always been where it’s at for me. But yeah, I definitely noticed a specific trend in my reading habits and that was to stick pretty much only with one kind of genre for a while. That “while” could be years of one genre, or only a few months.

These days I stick pretty much with paranormal fiction and paranormal romance. Ever since I became aware of how I read though, I’ve been trying to kick that habit of boxing myself into one reading corner. I try to disengage from the paranormal sometimes and read a historical or a contemporary, something to mix it all up a bit. Because I don’t want to get tired of paranormals. They are my first love – at the moment – and I want to keep ‘em that way. There’s just too many out there, a whole wide world of good possibilities.

What about you? Do you have any particular reading habits (or other influences) that shape how you read and shape what you choose to read? Do you tend to stick with one or two main genres? How do you keep your favorite genre from getting old?


Carolyn Crane said...

Great post I love your sheik story. Back in high school, a friend gave me Sweet Savage Love, and I was already a bit of a classics snob and I NEVER READ IT!

I often look back on that moment, wishing I'd read it. I know I would've enjoyed it. Lord knows I could've used some fun at that point. My life would have been sort of different, I think. Instead, I came to romance SO late. Like, in the last few years. SIGH. But now I'm loving it.

KT Grant said...

I loved VC Andrews when I was teen. The Flowers in the Attic series ruled my life. Yeah, I know, incest between brother and sister, blah blah... but it was so good!
Hmm I love turkey bacon.

Kati said...

Halllllooooo kmont! Thanks for the bacon saving, there's more for all of us!

Reading habits? Well mine is basically that I do. All the time. But I have definite mood swings. I'm in a contemporary phase right now. Well, except that I'm reading Kushiel's Dart. But mostly, I've been digging contemps lately.

But as soon as Larissa Ione and Lara Adrian's books come out, I'll be swinging back to paranormal. I've been out of the historical mood for quite a while now. Since summer. I've got about 20 historicals on my shelf waiting until the mood strikes again. I've read ONE historical in 6 months. And I loved it, but it didn't make me seek out more. Sooner or later it'll swing back.

Anyway, I started reading romance when I was 12, and it's pretty much all I read. I do occasionally wander into the mystery realm and every once in a while, a non-fiction book. But for the most part, I'm all romance.

It's lovely to have you here!

little alys said...

LOL. Oh gosh, I love how you expressed the early years of romance reading. I used to hide my books because it was 'bad' (tender age of early pre-teen era). Nowadays, they overflow my bed, bags and room. >_<

Well, when a genre starts getting a bit bleh for me, I switch and take a break. Going back to it helps some. I get into moods too. Wanting to read certain genres, or specific authors, but I must always have some romance in the stories.

Nicola O. said...

I just read tons of romance, any kind of romance. Preferrably without psycho serial killers, but even that is sort of negotiable.

For a break I used to head for high fantasy type stuff, like Roger Zelazny or Melanie Rawn. These days there's so much overlap with the paranormal romance genre it doesn't really count as a break.

LesleyW said...

I mainly read urban fantasy, but I try to slip a little something else in there every so often, just to keep the UF fresh.

At the moment it's usually sci-fi or historical romance. :)

And I think we've all got a sheik story somewhere in our past. LOL

Nicola O. said...

Oh, and if you're trying to figure out what the sheik/harem book was, look into the Skye O'Malley series by Bertrice Small. Several of them involved harem adventures.

Anonymous said...

Hey, ladies, sorry for not dropping back in all day. It's been me and the toddler doing turf wars all day lol. She keeps me on my toes that's for sure!

Carolyn, it's never to late to come to the side with the cookies lol. Welcome to the dark side, hon. We're glad to have you in the romance circle!

Katiebabs, I dunno if I ever read Flowers int he Attic, not all of it anyway, but I read that other one where the girl got raped by her friggin' uncle (who'd also tried to rape his sister). I think that series got passed around to all the girls in my seventh grade class.

Kati, ain't bacon da best?! I hear ya - I cannot wait to get Ione's book either. I envy you you're "all the time" reading habit too! That used to be lol. Kushiel's Dart and that series seems to be making a come back - or else it just never went out of popularity. I need to read it too.And thank you, it was a lot of fun posting here today. :)

Alys, I hid my books too, but I bet I was NOT fooling my mom. ;) Moms are craftier than young girls think lol. And yes to always having at least a little romance! I'm reading a straight fantasy right now, but there are two potential love interests for the heroine and both are driving me nuts. I wish one would make a move already!

Nicola, I'm not much of a romantic suspence/serial killer fan either, although I'll pop open a Linda Howard sometimes. And Melanie Rawn! Hae you read her urban fantasy book? I think it's about witches??

Lesley, *gasp* aren't those sheiks naughty? It would make a lot of sense for many young girls to have encountered a fictional one or two lol.

Tracy said...

Hey there Bacon Saver!! Or can I call you BS for short? lol - Yes, I know, baaaaaad. I do appreciate it though and you rock! :)

So my reading habits lately have been all over the freakin place. They're usually more sane. It's just been crazy. BUT I'm TRYING to get back in the habit of reading at least one contemp., one historical and one paranormal romance a week. The rest of the books might be a double but at least I get my fix from all of them. Now, let's see if this works.

Katie Reus said...

I read across the board, though lately I've been reading more paranormals and straight mysteries. I only have one 'rule' about reading. When I'm working on a new story, I try not to read in that genre.

Anonymous said...

Tracy - LOL! BS, huh? I'll try to live up to its one and only TRUE full name. Bacon Saver! It'll be my superhero name. :D

Katie, I've heard that's common, for writers to stay away from the genre they're reading at the moment. Have you found that it helps when you're writing then?

KT Grant said...

For myself, I don't do that because what I am writing now iw very different from the books I am reading.

JenB said...

Flowers in the Attic was my first "romance". That could be why I'm so screwed up today. LOL

When I was in elementary school, I read everything I could get my hands on. I gravitated toward romance at that age (if you can call the Alice books and Are You There God, It's Me Margaret romance), but I liked pretty much anything. I've always had a fondness for talking animals too, which may be why I like shapeshifter romances today. *ponders* Hmm.

I went through a snobby phase in HS and college where I'd only read "classics" and nonfiction and religious books in public, but I read Cosmo and Marie Claire magazines at home.

These days I'll read pretty much any kind of romance. I read mostly contemporary (m/f and m/m), but I love paranormal as well. Not a fan of historicals.

Umm...where was I going with this?

Oh reading habits are erratic, but I always stick with some kind of romance. The end.

Christine said...

Hey Kmont!
I read VC Andrews in 7th or 8th grade and was really enthralled by reading something that seemed so dark. forbidden, and downright creepy. That Flowers In the Attic series was so addictive, but so inappropriate for a 12 year old! Anyway, I don't even think it would be considered romance... probably thriller?

I do remember reading Gone With the Wind in my early teens, but I didn't read romance until about two years ago. I mostly gravitate to paranormal romance, but this year I've spread myself across a lot of romance subgenres. A bunch of contemporaries, UF with romance, sci fi romance, and a few historicals. I lurve it all!

jessewave said...

Hi KMont
Thanks for saving our bacon!
I love all kinds of books - doesn't have to be romance. My fave genre is murder mysteries from Agatha Christie to Erle Stanley Gardner to Ruth Rendell and Sherlock Holmes! Quite a list.

My current reading is mostly M/M - have been off het romances for quite a while but I did read Flowers in the Attic during my teen years *g*

When I was a teenager (oh so long ago) I loved the old Mills and Boon stories about sheiks and their innocent damsels. Now I just want a well written book with great characters or a murder mystery I can't solve until almost the last page.

Katie Reus said...

KMont, sorry I'm late answering :) I don't know if it necessarily helps, but it makes me feel more sane, lol. I have this fear that I'll 'take' a phrase subconsciously or something and insert it in one of my manuscripts. Maybe the fear is irrational, I don't know, but I sleep better by not reading in those genres :)

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