Just returned from my first writers’ residency at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA. It was a fabulous trip. It’s my first residency as part of the Writing Popular Fiction program. The hope is that this program will force me to finally finish the YA fantasy series I’ve been writing for entirely too long.
For each residency, we are required to read a novel that represents a
specific genre. Apparently the genre for this residency was romance.
For unknown reasons, however, the novel chosen was the YA book Fated by Alyson Noel. I won’t get into the many varied opinions of Fated, mostly because they were all negative. Instead, I will simply say that Fated was
at a disadvantage because it was being judged as a romance novel, which
is completely ridiculous. It was unfair to the novel and extremely
unfortunate to the entire romance genre. Most of the people reading
this novel had never read a romance novel before and probably never will
again and this was their one opportunity to experience quality romance
and unfortunately, Seton Hill failed to provide that experience. To the
extent that I would say those who had never read a romance novel before
still haven’t because Fated does not qualify under any circumstances as a romance.
Ultimately, despite this rocky beginning, the week was exceptional.
Fabulous modules focused on writing, lots of inspiration and we had the
opportunity to hear Kevin Hearne speak about The Iron Druid Chronicles
series (that I have not yet read, but have added to my list of novels to
read soon). I found Hearne to be delightfully humorous and
down-to-earth. I look forward to reading the first book in his series, Hounded.