Friday, February 21, 2020

Contemporary Fiction and Today's Politics by Connie Vines @author_connievines

How should fiction set in today’s times treat politics?

Thank you Dr. Bob for this month's Round Robin Blog topic.

I do not mention politics in my contemporary fiction. My western romance and romantic suspense novels highlight regional influences and traditions but ignore politics.


It's not because I'm unaware of the world of politics, Global and within the U.S.A., I am writing fiction with a strong romantic element.  I do not find politics romantic.  And even if I did, by the time my novel came into print or were downloaded into eBook readers, the political climate could have changed--my hero's stance is no longer be considered 'hero-like', or, relevant.  

Now my historical novels are a different matter.  History is history.  Historical research involves  means fact collecting: diaries, journals, newspaper articles (different slants), art, government records, (often) first-person interviews, and photographs---there was no photo-shop history to hide scars, or disguise the look of hunger or sorrow in the eyes of children.

"Tanayia--Whisper upon the Water" highlights a 'hot-bed' of political, racial, and government policies from the late 1800s until early 1900s--when the Native American Indians was forced onto Reservations and their children to sent to government run boarding schools.

I choose my political stories with great-care.  I make a point of showing both-sides of the story.  The world was different, harsher, less-forgiving and less open-minded place then.  Life was often cut short. I do not paint anyone as purely 'evil' but a product of his or her time and or environment because everyone is a innocent at birth.

So, reader's what is your take on politics in a contemporary novel?

Be sure and visit the talented writers of this month' s Round Robin Blog Hop and read what they have written.

Skye Taylor
Dr. Bob Rich
Fiona McGier
Rhobin Courtright

Saturday, January 25, 2020

How Can Contemporary Fiction Cope with the Changes of Today? #RR, #RoundRobin

Thank you, Dr. Bob, for this month’s blog topic. 

How can contemporary fiction cope with the rapid changes of today’s world?

First, I’d like to define what I believe defines a contemporary romance. 

·         A bone-deep sense of hope that true love is possible. 

Books that show Love is the way to everything that’s good.

·         Before the HEA there must be character growth and endings can also aim at a broad moral good.

·         A romance doesn’t have to solve the world’s problems.  Sometimes you want to witness the power of love.

 How Contemporary Romance Can Cope with the Rapid Changes of Today.

What trends do I see so romance novels can keep pace with today’s world?
·         Becoming more inclusive (though I have witnessed this trend over the past several years).  Everyone needs to be experiencing his/her happy ending.
·         This means people over 40, people of color, same-sex couples, disabled people, the list goes on. 

Redefining Motivating Factors.

·         Uphold/subvert capitalism.  In so many romance novels, the two seem inextricably tied (more so in historical novels). Marriage and romance over the centuries have been connected.  Therefore, it isn’t easy to liberate romance (Cinderella, Jane Eyre, etc.) from this narrative.

·         Or individualism in the romantic arc, “I need to complete this project so I get a big promotion.”

What do I expect to see in 2020 and in the hear future?

·         Narratives of belonging.

·         The arts

·         Community spirit

·         Family gathered at the dinner table giving thanks for the meal delivered by a ‘home-chef service’ but prepared by all.

What changes to you expect to see in contemporary romance novels?

What plot is your favorite?

What do you believe defines a modern day contemporary romance?

List of this month’s participants:

Rhobin L Courtright


Saturday, December 28, 2019

Flash Fiction Story by Connie Vines #RoundRobin

This month's Round Robin Blog Authors are posting Flash Fiction or story excerpts for your enjoyment

Marrying off Murphyⓒ
Flash Fiction
Contemporary Romance
Connie Vines

Snagging a copy of the OP News, Professor Murphy Flynn found himself staring at his unflattering photo. The headline: “Bachelor Auction.” The submissions editor was Sylvie Dupree. A dark-haired Creole beauty who was his stepsister’s best friend.

“Tallulah Belle!”

Sylvie bolted from her chair.

“You’ve made me the laughing stock of the faculty.”

Sylvie peaked around the corner to see her boss wave the program under his nose.
“Murph, it’s for charity.”

Murphy’s gaze locked with hers. “If I’m going to do this, I need to look the part. Sylvie, can you help me?”

Her mouth went dry and her pulse fluttered.  “Laissez les bon temps rouler, Murphy.”

Leaving Murphy at the barbershop, Sylvie examined the tailored shirts in at the department store.
“Is that the shirt you’d like me to try on?”

The tall, vaguely familiar man reached for the garment and she released the hanger with nervous fingers. No way. This gorgeous male was… “Murphy?”

He arched one eyebrow. “Yes?”

Sylvie knew her jaw had gone slack and she was staring, but she couldn’t help it. Murphy had gotten his haircut and styled, and he’d shaved his beard. His cheekbones had a Slavic slant to them, his jaw was firm and sexy; and his hair had a tousled look. She had a feeling she’d unleashed a tiger.

“Let’s go over the program again,” Sylvie coached Murphy behind the temporary rigged curtain inside the crowded restaurant.

“I smile, walk down the runway, take off my jacket, turn around, and then walk back to the podium.”
The frenzied sounds of bidding for the first bachelor filled the room. “It’s the emcee’s job to pump up the bids. Just strut your stuff.”

“Strut my stuff!” he yelped.

Sylvie seized him by the hand. “It’s an auction, a bachelor bidding war, remember?”
“Sylvie,” Murphy growled, his eyes dark with desire, as well as a hint of fear.

She liked the crisp scent of his cologne and the flare of fire in his green eyes.

Murphy stroked Sylvie’s jaw, is mouth hovered a mere inch from her own.  “Do you really want me to smile at other women?”

Before she could admit her feelings, Tallulah parted the curtain and shoved Murphy onto the stage.

“What did you say to him?”

Sylvie watched Murphy toss his jacket into the crowd and yank off his bowtie.  “I told him to strut his stuff.”



Tallulah glanced at the crowd. “Don’t just sit there, Sylvie. Bid!”

“Oh, I can’t just—” Sylvie watched, rendered speechless, as Murphy unbuckled his belt and tugged his shirt free of his trousers. “Five hundred!” she screamed.


“Seven!” she countered.

“One thousand!”

The emcee’s gavel hits the podium. “Going once, twice—”

“Two-thousand!” Sylvie shouted, knowing darn well her check would bounce.

“Sold!” yelled Murphy. He jumped off the stage, hauled Sylvie out of her chair, and led her to a secluded corner.

As his lips captured hers, Sylvie tangled her fingers into his hair. The sweet and gentle kiss soon turned hot and fierce.

“Laissez les bon temps rouler,” she murmured against his lips. Let the good times roll!

I hope you enjoyed my Flash Fiction Story, "Marrying Off Murphy".

Remember all of my ebooks are on sale!  75% off on Smashwords until Jan.1, 2020.

Smashwords  Link for Sale Prices!

Visit the blogs our participating authors to see what tales each has woven for your enjoyment!

Friday, December 13, 2019

I'm Blogging at Romance Gems

I'm Blogging Today at Romance Gems

The Scents and Memories of the Holidays

Please stop by and sign up for Candy Cane Kisses Giveaways!

Saturday, November 23, 2019

The Oddest Character I Ever Dream Up by Connie Vines #Round Robin

Thank you, Robin, for this month’s Round Robin Topic:

What is the oddest character you have every dream up, and how did he/she fit into a story?

Odd adjective, odd·er, odd·est.
differing in nature from what is ordinary, usual, or expected: an odd choice. singular or peculiar in a strange or eccentric way: an odd person; odd manners.

I seem to have eccentric people in most of my stories.

My favorite, however, is Caldwell, the cankerous cook in Brede, Rodeo Romance Book 2.

Caldwell keeps everyone on their toes.  His humor is biting, but Caldwell also has a soft-spot for those he cares about.  And to everyone’s amazement, he’s a bit of a Romero!

The ‘winner’ of my oddest character, should probably be awarded to Meredith, my zombie heroine in Here Today, Zombie Tomorrow.  Though I must admit, even in her Zombie persona, Meredith is surprisingly normal.  Perhaps this is what is ‘odd’.

How do you feel about odd characters in a novel?

What is the favorite ‘odd, oddish’ character from a novel?

Please visit the other authors in this month’s round robin blog!

Happy Reading,


Skye Taylor
Victoria Chatham
A.J. Maguire
Dr. Bob Rich
Diane Bator
Beverley Bateman
Fiona McGier
Judith Copek
Rhobin L Courtright

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