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Monday, October 11, 2010

Hello Out There!

Hello, everbodeeeee!! (Shouted in my best Grover voice)

::::waves madly::::

I'm here! I'm here! I wasn't sure I'd make it on time, but I managed.

Who am I? I'm another Marianne -- Marianne Arkins. Truthfully, Marianne is my pen name, but I actually respond to it better now than I do my legal name, to the point of signing personal emails with it (note to my husband: maybe I should just sign notes "Love, Your Wife" so I don't confuse you).

A little about me? Um ... I love animals in all shapes and sizes, but am only owned by one old, cranky cat and one crazy but loveable three year-old dog. I raise butterflies in the summer, and homeschool my daughter. I live in New Hampshire but hope and pray every day that I'll move south and out of the frozen north. So far, that hasn't happened.

What else?

I write romance in various genres and decades, though I tend to lean toward lighter fare. I don't like to call my work "romantic comedy" because it's not laugh-out-loud funny all the time, but it seldom takes itself seriously ... with some exceptions (most notably, my two vintage romances, "Miles From You" and "Don't Fence Me In", neither of which is in the least bit funny ... in fact, I have one friend who cries at the end of "Don't Fence Me In" every time she reads it.)

Mostly, though, I figure life in general pretty much sucks (have you looked at the news lately?), so why write books that are depressing, too? Plus, I just tend to think funny thoughts, so that typically oozes on over to my writing. It's a good ooze, don't worry. You won't need antibactierial gel.

The tagline on my website says exactly what I feel about romance: "No Matter the Decade, Always Happily Ever After".

I don't do Nicholas Sparks. I don't do Oprah bookclub novels. I want to have my heart sigh and my lips smile when I read something, so naturally I try to write stories that reflect that desire.

What about you? Do you enjoy reading the kinds of books that leave you a little sad? Be honest... are you a Nicholas Sparks fan? If so -- why? If not -- why not?

How about sharing some of your favorite "Happy Ever After" books? I'm always looking for something good to read.

And, thanks, too for joining me here today!


  1. Good morning :-) Just wanted to stop in and say "hello" before starting the day...and I notice another friend blogged just before you. Let me go tell her hi, too. :-)

  2. Hi. Fun Blog. Have a great day.

  3. Hi Marianne,

    I like my books to end with satisfaction and if I'm going to be sad, it's a good sad because I've finished the book.

    Have a great Monday.

  4. Hey everyone .. thanks for coming by! And Dru, I'm with you on that. It's okay to be a little sad because a fabulous story ended, but NOT because the hero dies at the end. IMHO.

  5. I'm with you, Marianne. Gotta have that HEA ending and fun along the way. If I want "real" life, I'll read or write a nonfiction book! Romance books need to "whisk us away" from reality and take us to a world of happy endings...because, truthfully...there ARE some happy endings in the world and let's focus on those!

  6. I am totally a "happy ever after" type reader (and writer). You'd have to force me to read an Oprah book club book. Ugh.

  7. I don't mind bittersweet endings, after all some HEAs do come at a cost, but I don't like sad endings. That's not why I read.

    Great to see you at your new digs, Marianne!

  8. Marianne, I just think if I want "realistic", I'll read the newspaper. For entertainment, I want happy. But I know others feel differently... silly people.

  9. Tori, an Oprah recommendation pretty much means I'll never touch it. LOL... Not that my one sale would make that much of a difference.

  10. Maria, bittersweet is a little different, I suppose. The ONLY Nicholas Sparks book I've read and actually liked was "The Guardian" and it was definitely bittersweet.

    Still, I'm more into Jennifer Crusie-like entertainment.

  11. I read just about everything. But, the books that stay in my heart are always the ones with a bit of humor and fun along with a HEA. I am not a Nicholas Sparks fan. Life is sad and hard enough without filling my free time with books that will make me cry.

  12. Brandy -- exactly! Which is why I gobble up Jenny Crusie, Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Rachel Gibson (among others). They're fun, sexy and happy. A perfect trifecta.

  13. Hiya fellow Marianne! I love that you put humor in your books-my favorite author Kerrelyn Sparks is a genius at it and I'm a devoted fan for life as a result! I'm always sad the book ends, but I can always read it again & again, and the jokes never get old!
    I gotta ask-since you live in NH do you know Lara Adrian? She's another HUGE favorite of mine, but not for the humor in her dark paranormals. However, sometimes one of her Breed warriors gets a good line in-lol!

  14. Marianne, I don't know Lara Adrian, but am hoping to go to the New England RWA conference this spring. Maybe I'll meet her then?

  15. I'm in favor of a good HEA. I most enjoy reading historical romances set in the Regency and Victorian eras...really anything in the 19th century is good reading IMO! I do like the occasional romantic comedy or will toss in a good suspense/mystery/thriller once in a while.

    One of my 2010 reads is a Victorian set in Chicago during the 1893 World's Fair titled 'The Belly Dancer' by Deanna Cameron. Excellent story with good background about the Fair. And while not a traditional HEA, the heroine did achieve a happy ending for herself.

    And speaking of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, if you really don't care about that HEA, try 'Devil in the White City' by Erik Larson in 2004. This is a true story of the planning & building of the Fair and a real serial killer stalking women in Chicago. This book reads almost like fiction but it is all true.

    I've never read Nicholas Sparks but I have enjoyed the films I've seen based on some of his books.

    kkhaas at bellsouth dot net


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