Saturday, May 22, 2010



I thought it really appropriate that since I was blogging at Happily Ever After, that Iwould write about...well, happy ever afters. I mean it's what we all want? Right! Trouble is, for our characters, it suaually comes at the end of...well... trouble and angst and heart ache and all the stuff in between. But then the happy ending is worth it after a tumultuous path getting there.

I asked fellow romance writers to share their thoughts on happy endings...

Author Abbey MacInnis, who also writes as Eve Knight says...I think for a couple to be happy, there must be mutual respect between them. Arguing is fine. In fact it's healthy to fight, as long as there's good co9mmunication between the couple, and respecting each other if disagreements do arise. Providing support, whether its emotional security, or supporting their dreams can help reaffirm their own self-worth and self esteem too. Affection and passion :) (I do write romance) is important too becuase that can cross over in helping to improve communciation.

And that's the thing. As romance writers we also know the reality of life, we can be quite cyncial, but we have to believe there is a way forward.

So we have to make sure our characters talk, that their words arent' just going round in circles. They have to find the way forward.

Author Sandra Edwards writes...For me an HEA happens when two people love and respect each other enough to make the commitment to spen their lives together.

Writer friend, Helen, says...I bleieve in a Happy Ever After. When someone asks me what is the essential ingredient I immediately say trust. Specifically, emotional trust. When you invest yourself in someone and they in you, the true integrity of that relationship is shown by how much you can trust them to love, honor and not to judge you in your successes, or failures.

Love that phrase...EMOTIONAL TRUST. And integrity and honor. They are true chracteriestics we need to bring to our characters as their stories unfold. Without them they they may not be able to have their own happy endings.

Writing happy endings is so rewarding. In HE'S THE ONE I was blown away by the remarkable change in my alpha male I remember re-reading it after having left it for a few weeks, and saying ..."Oh, god, I wrote that." It was so exciting, so romantic and beautiful. I was very proud of myself as a writer.

Author Nalini Singh's article says to punish your characters, and also to find five things that they don't want to happen/or do, and then make it happen. A hero I have just written would never have cried. I made him cry as he realised he had lost the woman he loved, and it was too late. For me that worked. Another scene i was so very proud of.

Happy ever after stories take us out of the real world for just a moment. They revive our spirit and give us hope and help us believe that all will be okay, in the end. It has to be, because hope is what fuels us forward, just as it does for our characters.

And so with that, dear readers, Iwill leave you to your happy endings...

And happy reading

Read an excerpt of Jane's new release - HE'S THE ONE


Lindsay Townsend said...

I agree so much, Jane. Hope is vital, sometimes it's the one thing that keeps us going.
And I love a HEA!
Interesting blog - and a glorious cover!
Thanks for sharing.

ladybirdrobi said...

I'm not an author of books. I have written poetry. But I believe in a HEA in real life as well as in the books I so love to read. HEA happens when two people can commit totally to one another. Their emotions, feelings and the bond of love between them. Just because we have arguments or disagree or even have different feelings toward the same issues doesn't mean we are unhappy with one another. They say a commitment is 50/50, I disagree I think if each person devotes 100% to their commitment then that HEA is there and undeniably the glue that holds them together.

I'm not the greatest with words so I hope that that explanation of mine makes sense to everyone.


Maria said...

I love to see the HEA in any romance because it re-affirms for me that having a relationship is worth going thru the aggravation and disappointments that every day gives us. I'm also glad that romance writers give their hero and heroine something to solve and get thru because it makes the story so much more believable.

Celia Yeary said...

JANE- most HEA fairy tales end with the H/H in gorgeous clothes in a beautiful setting--much like a wedding. In a book, that might be the ending, or at least it's intimated. Everyone clean, spruced up, smiling, laughing, thrilled.
But then we take off the beautiful trappings and we have laundry, dirty diapers, a screaming toddler, no time for a cup of tea, and an argument or two, then we'll see about that happy ending. To me, a HEA is when two people can grow in their own way,and still maintain the physical and emotional trust. Wow, that's the hard part.In our novels, we only pretend, but at least we can give our H/H enough character to make us believe they will be able to work through everything and keep that HEA intact. Very good post. Celia

Anitra Lynn McLeod said...

I am a big believer in the HEA! I want to see characters grow and strive for that moment when they realize they are meant to be together. :)

Savanna Kougar said...

Jane, lovely insightful blog. I certainly couldn't have said it better. Kudos.

I think for my heroines and heroes, its often more about commitment to the mate of their choice, that deep well of knowing and believing that she/he is the one, and then doing whatever it takes to make the relationship come about, to let the love happen.

For me, it's also about joining together at a deep emotional level, so that a true partnership exists.


Savanna Kougar said...

Robin, you expressed yourself beautifully. Thanks for sharing.

JaneB said...

Lindsay... me too, i'm a sucker for a happy ending. In Desperately Seeking Santa, my hero had to teach the heroine to like Christmas all over again and it was so quirky and sweet.

JaneB said...

Great explanation Robin. Love has to be 100%


JaneB said...

Maria, yes relationships are real with all the ups and downs, but hey i'm a romantic, i met my hubby on a blind date and we married 11 months later and this year we celebrate our 27th wedding anniversary!
So go figure i write romance!

JaneB said...

Hi Celia, yes, reality can bite hard into the fantasy of a HEA. But that's where we take our flawed characters and make them hurt for a bit, give them something to sort out so it makes the romance really worth the angst.

JaneB said...

Hey Anitra
I really love that moment of realisation. Jane

JaneB said...

Doing whatever it takes. That's the ultimate test isn't it Savannah


Linda Banche said...

I love HEA's. Real life is so anti-HEA, I like romances because I know I will get one there.

I read somewhere that the H/H have to earn their HEA in a romance. If they've suffered and worked, I want to see them happy at the end. But happy at the end does not necessarily mean fame and riches and everything going right for the rest of their lives. It means they walk into the sunset together, the two of them stronger than each alone.

And I love your cover!

JaneB said...

Linda, totally agree, like all relationships if they are to survive whatever life throws at them, our characters too have to work for it.