I write fantasy romance stories that are lighthearted and not too violent. While I’m all for the occasional pirate invasion (where no one is killed, of course), I don’t want to write about battles, torture, or a heroine suffering to overcome the ultimate evil and save the world. I like to focus on characters overcoming their internal conflicts and becoming stronger, while connecting with their love interest. My love scenes are consensual and free of violence.
While getting to know a romantic interest, my protagonists will also discover their own strengths and end up empowered. I’m committed to avoiding romance genre tropes that degrade women, and hope my readers will call me out if I slip up and fall into any unempowering stereotypes. I believe that stories can create positive change in our world, and see no reason why the romance genre cannot participate.
Characters in my stories often struggle to believe in themselves. Whether it is believing they are lovable, capable, or courageous enough to change their situation, they will gain the confidence they need as the story progresses. While everyone loves a romantic rescue, I’d like my heroines to also find their own way out of trouble and participate in making the change they need.
Some other goals of mine are writing stories with characters who experience depression and writing love scenes where things don’t work 100% right all the time (while still keeping the scene sexy!), because I’d like these real-life experiences to appear in romance novels. I’ve drafted two contemporary romances where I’ve tackled these challenges, but have not published them yet.
The themes in my stories are rooted in my own struggles to believe in myself. I was single for decades and have had a long (and ongoing) journey to discover my strength and believe I am valuable. Years ago, after self-publishing a how-to book on bread making, I thought I might someday write a self-help book with a chapter for each major crush I went through in my life. I decided that writing romance novels would be a more fun way to share my experiences.
I live in the historical, writer-filled town of Hillsborough, North Carolina. When I have any free time, which is not often, I like to hike with my partner, write paper letters to friends in the Cup A Joe downtown (pre-COVID!), sit on the front porch with the cats, or listen to podcasts to make mowing the lawn bearable.
“Jane” is my middle name and the pen name I use for my romance writing. You can learn more about my other pursuits at emilybuehler.com.