Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, Women's Business

Red Lips and Rebellion

Juliette wearing red lipsticks in front of her bookshelf
Juliette wearing red lipstick

Today is the Fourth of July. Independence Day in the United States of America. There is an oft repeated line that authors shouldn’t get into politics. We should be quiet about our beliefs and feelings so as not to alienate our readers.

As a woman, with a degree in history, I have always disagreed with this point. There is a reason that governments come for writers and artists when they are floating with or full on embracing authoritarianism. And remaining silent so a few more people might buy books is not an option.

On this Independence Day, a movement that has been working for years to control women, and people with uteruses, bodies got the political win that they wanted. The Supreme Court, with five justices selected by presidents who lost our popular election, overturned fifty years of precedence protecting privacy and the right to bodily autonomy with their decision on Roe v. Wade.

The impacts are already being felt. I live in a state with a trigger law. In a state that is already considering a bill to take away my right to birth control. In a state with representatives who have stated that while assault and rape are horrid, it doesn’t matter. The life of a mother in danger…doesn’t matter. The right of a person to simply make the best decisions for themselves for their own reasons…doesn’t matter.

Did you know that red lips, bright red lips, were a sign of rebellion for the suffrage movement? Suffragettes painted their lips red to force men to notice. Elizabeth Arden passed out red lipstick to women marching for votes in 1912. Now a century later, I find myself painting my lips red. Readying myself for the battles to come, for the cries for justice and bodily autonomy.

If you live in the US, I urge you to vote in November. Our rights quite literally depend on it. If you are interested in joining the fight, please know, there is no need to reinvent wheels. There are organizations who have been in this fight for decades, largely led by women of color. Join those already in the fight, who know what we are dealing with. Two good resources to start with are: Planned Parenthood and the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Need to know how to vote in the US, this link will take you to a page explaining how to do that for which state you live in. AND what the deadlines are for when you need to register.

Remember, romance heroines get consent over their bodies. Romance by its nature is rebellious because it says we deserve pleasure and consent. Overturning Roe impacts us all.

Well behaved women seldom make history. ~ Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, Women's Business

Why Romance Heroines are all about Womens’ Rights

  1. Romance heroines never settle for second-best when choosing who they love.
  2. Romance heroines are strong in heart and in mind and in soul—or they end up that way after growing through the conflicts in the story.
  3. Romance heroines, like all strong women, are good role models for our daughters.
  4. Romance heroines don’t obsess over their weight or if their hair looks good. They focus their energy on what is important to them.
  5. Romance heroines believe in the sanctity of a strong and faithful relationship and will accept nothing less.
  6. Romance heroines choose mates who bring out the best in them.
  7. Romance heroines understand and embrace the power in being a woman.
  8. Romance heroines are brave enough to be vulnerable and fall in love.
  9. Romance heroines believe in hope for a happy, healthy future.
  10. Romance heroines gives readers hope that they can be the heroines of their own lives.

As a romance reader, I have been bolstered and encouraged and inspired time after time by the heroines in romance novels. While these are fictional characters, all characters are based on real traits we have in ourselves or we’ve seen in someone else. The women in the medical profession have my highest admiration. When writing Dr Stephanie Montclair, in  THE BABY WHO SAVED DR CYNICAL, I came to realize how strong-willed and strong-spirited these women must be. They must balance sympathy and compassion with the knowledge that what must be done to save a life could hurt, on so many levels.

In THE BABY WHO SAVED DR CYNICAL, Dr. Stephanie Montclair and Dr. Jason Drake are diagnosticians, the doctors of last resort. They have the lowest success rate in the profession because they are the doctors people turn to after everyone else has given up hope. They are strong, brilliant, independent people. Finding their equals is something neither thinks will ever happen for them. Until, one day….

Dr Stephanie Montclair finds in Dr Jason Drake a man who inspires her to be a better woman, just as she inspires him to be a better man. While they rely on each other they also challenge each other to grow. Love makes them vulnerable enough to grow and become more of who they were born to be.

And isn’t that what happily-ever-after relationships are all about? That we all become better people because we love.

THE BABY WHO SAVED DR CYNICAL is available at Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.com for Kindle and BarnesandNoble.com for Nook.