The holidays are many things to many people. For some, they’re a chance to reunite with friends and family. For others, they’re an opportunity to give of ourselves and to receive. I count myself lucky in that I usually get to do both. Yet I also find that I’m very reflective at this time of the year. I think of the changes I’ve seen in my three growing boys. I see the changes in myself as I age (sigh), and wonder if I’ve matured in equal measure. I remember both the happy memories of the past twelve months, and the sad. I think about what the coming year might bring.
And then after I’ve done my bit of soul-searching, and make promises to myself that I fully intend to keep, I give a gift to myself. Outsiders to our genre might not understand, but I think you will. I find myself a stack of holiday-themed romances, and I dive right in. Whenever characters are kissing under a sprig of mistletoe, taking sleigh rides in the snow, or linking hands together in front of a Christmas tree, I’m hooked.
I think it’s because romances are inherently hopeful, and especially at this time of the year, we are hopeful. Just like the heroes and heroines in the books that we read, we’ve come through everything this past year has thrown at us, and we’ve survived, right along with our capacity to love.
This year, that’s especially true for all those romances when a hero falls for a hero, and a heroine meets that one special someone in another heroine.
This is the gift-giving season, after all, and love is the greatest gift we can give to another person. Romance books aren’t afraid to acknowledge that. Indeed, they celebrate it, and it’s one of the many reasons I’m so proud to be a part of this industry. All of us are worthy of love, and as the new year dawns, the future is shiny, and full of possibility.