By Delsora Lowe
I read many different romance genres, but I write contemporary – yes, I write what I know best. I admire the authors who write historical or paranormal or…you name the genre. But I know I do best when sticking with—in a way—what I know best.
Which leads me to why I write small town-based romances.
For me to write what I know includes a myriad of experiences of being born and growing up in a city, in between stints of living overseas. But the childhood experiences that mark me are spending summers in two small towns in New York (my grandmother’s house and an Adirondack camp), going to college in a tiny town in Vermont, spending summers in an out-of-the way small beach community, visiting my daughter in the mountains of Colorado, and living most of my adult life in a medium-sized town near the coast of Maine. These towns are the basis of my world building. Then my imagination takes over with what-ifs.
Don’t get me wrong, I love cities. As a teen it was a great place to grow up, with its little neighborhoods, easy transportation to wherever you wished to go, the cultural and educational opportunities, and vibrant diversity. And I do write about big city experiences, but usually in the context of coming home to the small town.
All my experiences are like nutrients that nourish and grow my stories. And when you can add in elements of true experiences, all the better.
My daughter used to live in the Colorado mountains, so I know the glitz of small-town Aspen compared to the family- and small-business-friendly towns down valley. Elements of both types of small towns show up in my upcoming series, Cowboys of Mineral Springs.
In The Prince’s Son, book one, due out in April, the setting is based on a ranch near Aspen once owned by a middle-eastern true-life prince. My daughter taught skiing to children of wealthy visitors to Aspen. Both are true-to-life inspiration for my entirely fictional characters.
|Lobster Trap Christmas Tree|
Plus, there is something romantic about small towns, where you can walk down the street and know people, or jar memories from when you were a child or a teen or a young married couple. Where you can hear the high school band warming up for the Veteran’s Day parade from your back porch, even though the high school parking lot is across town. Or walk several blocks to the town square to watch outdoor movies on the green, or listen to the municipal band at the gazebo, or wander the weekly farmer’s market, or skate on the man-made pond in the winter. And what’s a day without running into and chatting with half-dozen friends in one trip to the grocery store.
Basically, small towns conjure up the images of being able to stop and smell the roses, instead of letting life pass you by in a whir of work, rushing to catch public transportation, climbing the corporate ladder, never having time to say hello to a neighbor in the apartment hallway, or even recognizing them as your neighbor.
I was asked if writing about small towns is limiting.
I believe there is a never-ending source of inspiration for creating small-town worlds. You take bits and pieces of reality, and they morph into fiction on the page. In small towns your characters can find their happily-ever-after, maybe with a bit of meddling from the aunt who has always been there for them, or under the microscope of the entire town. It’s a different dynamic than in a city setting.
The layout of the small town facilitates the ability to constantly run into friends and enemies. The characters can’t get away with avoiding people, being put under the microscope of scrutiny, or being the victim of matchmaking.
For me, writing small town is fun! And when the big, bad world around us gets to be too much, immersing myself in writing (or reading) small town romance can take me away, at times, to what seems like a less complicated way of life. Don’t get me wrong, there are villains in small towns too. Where would the fun / challenge / growth be if everything was all life as seen through small-town rosy glasses?
The Prince’s Son
A first meet, royalty and nanny romance between a self-exiled prince, Ari Orula, with a royal chip on his shoulders and the local rancher’s daughter, Carla Peters, who rails against any man who tries to tell her what to do. When she tries to tell the prince how to raise his son, tempers flare and sparks fly.
Delsora Lowe writes small town sweet romances and contemporary westerns from the mountains of Colorado to the shores of Maine ~ cottages to cabins ~ keep the home fires burning ~
A transplanted big city gal, world-wide traveler, and foreign-service brat, who now lives in a coastal Maine town, Delsora Lowe loves to write about small town heroes from the cowboys and ranchers of Colorado to the game wardens and lobstermen of Maine. Her work in the hospitality industry, rape crisis, admissions, alumni relations, and women’s advocacy has allowed her to interact on a daily basis with real life heroines and heroes.
Lowe’s family visits to Colorado are the inspiration for an upcoming contemporary western series, Cowboys of Mineral Springs, to be released in 2019 and 2020. And her daughter’s wedding and her son’s home, both on the coast of Maine, provided plentiful ideas for the Starlight Grille series (released in 2017 and 2018).
Look for Delsora’s short romance, entitled Sweet Change of Heart, in Woman’s World Magazine, to be released on January 31 – February 7, 2019
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