Beth Fantaskey, author of Jekel Loves Hyde, has stopped by to offer her thoughts on why Paranormal Romance is hot, hot, hot! I mean popular... well, hot too!
The Popularity of the Paranormal
Since becoming a “paranormal” writer – a title I love, because it makes ME seem “beyond normal” – a lot of people ask me why I think paranormal romance is so popular.
As a writer, the answers are easy. To venture “outside the normal” allows me to open up as many doors as my imagination can conjure. Beyond what I choose to impose, there are no rules for or limits on what my characters can do.
Somewhat conversely, working in the “human” and “paranormal” realms also offers me opportunities to create barriers to romance that can make a story more interesting. In the book I’m working on now, what separates the two potential lovers is essentially the gates of hell. That kind of drama – those high stakes – are difficult to find in the “normal” world.
Of course, I know what the question really means. Why do READERS like paranormal romance?
Well, I can answer that as a reader, too. And my responses are similar to those I offered as a writer.
It’s exciting to enter a story and not know just how far it will take you. Down a dark tunnel into another dimension? To a castle in Romania with a room that a new vampire bride could never have imagined? A chemistry lab where things go terribly wrong? The end of the universe?
And things “beyond the normal” are inherently dangerous – and that can be fun and exciting, too. Just how much can you trust a vampire or werewolf... even one who claims to love you?
Some people say that paranormal literature is a fad, and I agree that interest in it ebbs and flows. But as someone who thrilled to The Mists of Avalon and The Lord of the Rings way back in my teenage years, I believe there will always be a core audience of readers and writers who look at the world and ask, “What’s out there that I haven’t perceived, or dreamed of, yet?” And those people will always look to literature for possible answers – and romance where the risks and rewards are unexpected, too.