Yesterday was my anniversary. Eight years ago, my husband and I braved one lost bridesmaid, one un-hemmed flower girl dress, one pair of torn ring-bearer's rented pants, and more dead and wilted roses than I really want to remember. And it was the best wedding ever.
Seriously, you think yours was better, but I'm promising you it wasn't. Or at the very least, we had many more cookies and cakes* and WAY better music and dance moves.
In his toast, our best man wished us the "quiet miracle of an extraordinary life together." It was a pitch-perfect toast, because it gets to the heart of what makes romance so compelling for many of us. It's more than just the big moments that draw us to romance (not that we can ignore those). But the extraordinary emotional punch of the repeated quiet miracles we experience in our relationships everyday are what we replicate for our readers when we write--even if we do it through dukes and assassins and vampires. The article that appeared recently about romance novels being dangerous, about the readers of romance novels participating in a kind of dangerous escapism got it exactly wrong. We read and write these types of books because we see in them something that we hope and-- if we are truly lucky--something that we know is true. We are drawn to them because we want to experience again and again that one true thing.**
Now my husband has never been one for the grand gesture. He did not woo me with flowers and jewels*** or rent a hot-air balloon to propose. But since we started dating, two mostly broke undergrads at Kent State, he's made me cards. Someday, he's going to realize he could probably make a heck of a lot of money if he sold them to Hallmark, but for now they're all mine. They're never big, gushy professions of love, but they're always funny. And they always, in their subtlety, let me know just exactly how he feels. And they give me a bigger emotional punch than any hot love scene in a romance ever has, because they always convey to me his unwavering support--and for me, that's probably more romantic than the biggest diamond ring (not that I'd turn down one of those, either).
So without further ado, I'd like to share his most recent creation with you. Because nothing's better than romance in real life.
Five Signs You Married a Professional Writer****
5. Every other conversation begins with "can you think of a word that means...confused yet with a strong desire for spaghetti."
4. Your house used to have hard-wood floors, now you have wall-to-wall paperback novels. Although, some of those have "hard wood" in them (if you know what I'm sayin')
3. Your wife can claim one of those new eReaders as a business expense on your taxes.
2. Your bed is never cold--thanks to a Macbook.
And the #1 sign is...
1. When making dinner plans, you must consult her agent first.
Because nothing is more romantic than having a partner who is even more excited by your successes than you are and who can believe even when you don't. And isn't that what we really write about--the dream of finding someone who sees us for exactly who we are and loves us anyway?
See? I'm one lucky, lucky girl. Now excuse me while I get back to the book I just bought. It has the hottest cover....
*I'm talking enough baked-goods to put a diabetic into a sight-induced blood sugar surge. And I have the pictures to prove it.
**Also for the pictures of hot, cut men on the cover.
***Okay, there were a couple of times he sent me flowers, but that was mostly when he did something stupid he had to apologize for.
****A production of Dunick Cards (When the Hallmark store is too damn far to walk to)