Romance novels aren’t generally the place for political discussions. After all, the guaranteed happy ever after is seldom what we get from our politicians More seriously, discussing politics usually ends by annoying someone, if not everyone, and frankly that doesn’t seem worth the hassle. I save my political opinions to share with the car radio while driving — um, yeah, I’m the crazy lady talking to herself in the car. Fortunately, these days, people just think I’m on a hands-free phone.
So why am I so proud to say that my about to be released romance, It’s Love, Dude, has politics in it? Because I’m fudging what I mean by politics.
“Politics” has a stinky smell because we often use the term to describe the bad behaviour of bickering politicians. But the political system in Australia is actually robust and makes our lives better. I wanted to celebrate the role of local Members of Parliament (MPs) who without fanfare just get on with the job of representing their communities, helping and fighting for them. So when I “met” my heroine Molly I knew she worked for her local MP. She loved living in her town and being the point of contact for people who needed help navigating government bureaucracy or getting an unfair law changed or simply having someone listen to them. It was about giving back to the community that supported her.
One of the joys of reading and writing romance novels is this glimpse into other people’s lives, and the chance to celebrate the good things we sometimes take for granted.