On the list of the things you are dealing with and describing, of course, is human beauty. Most of the people, certainly the heroines and heroes in a romance novel are going to be beautiful. It’s part of the fantasy, and attitudes toward beauty, effects of beauty and the consequences of beauty are going to influcence the plot of the story.
But in writing about women’s looks, you’re also writing about women’s perceptions of their own looks, and their comfort with their bodies and sexuality. On the list of reasons I enjoy romance writing is it gives me a chance to explore, examine and present positive attitutudes toward the whole range of female beauty, along side positive relationships and positive sexual choice.
And this is EXACTLY why I’m so bloody PISSED OFF right now.
Maybe you’ve heard. Fox News, that Defender of Democracy (TM) and arbiter of what is and is not Really American has decided that a Lane Bryant lingerie ad that doesn’t even BEGIN to hit the Victoria Secret standard for strutting and pouting in underware, can’t be shown in the eight o’clock hour. Disney’s TV arm, ABC has joined the refusal to air the ad.
What’s the problem with it? The women in it are all reubenesque. They have normal, fit bodies with curves. What’s more, they are pleased with what they see when they look in the mirror.
Horrors! Shield your eyes! Guard your children from this utter indecency of women with curves being shown not hating their own bodies!