And if they don’t, why not? A few weeks ago Monica Mingo posted a question on her über-popular blog asking how many people there read romance. (No, I didn’t put her up to ask the question, though I probably should have. I’m not sure why she asked it.) Well, the result was about the loudest chorus of crickets I’ve heard in a long time. I don’t have demographic information on Monica’s blog, but I would guess it’s primarily black women with a generous helping of other races and genders (I could be wrong, though). Of course, my first thought was, “I really do need a new gig.” But I got to wondering, Monica posts topics about books on a regular basis. These women are all very well-read and seem to be prolific readers of just about every genre, EXCEPT romance. So the burning question is, Why? I’ve noticed a lot of black women seem to dislike romance novels and wonder the same thing. Oprah, who’s never met a pathology porn story she didn’t like dismisses romance out of hand. So how do we go about changing that? What is it about romance that turns these people off? I mean, I think I write some pretty awesome books full of interesting characters and story arcs, but if I’m missing out on a sizable segment of the population I need to do something to rectify that. What do you recommend? I’d be more than happy to give them free books to try to lure them to the pink side, anything else?
Oh, and before anyone say this I’ll say it myself, I know there’s a general disdain for romance, though how that can be when romance is the best-selling genre out there I’ll never know, but I’m focusing on black women because that’s my target audience.