Another day, another guest post. I know, I’m so good to you! But only because you’re good to me. Thanks SO much to everyone who’s sent me nice things about my next book (see previous post).
So, over to the very lovely and very talented Talli Roland who, today, is in defence of Chicklit (which is just as well, because she writes it)…
In Defence of Chick Lit
‘What do you write, anyway?’ the academic asked, looking at me with interest (or a squinty eye, maybe?).
My hand slid across my mouth. ‘Um . . . chick lit,’ I mumbled.
‘Oh. All that pink, girly stuff with high heels and cupcakes.’ He backed away, as if curlicues would leap off me and contaminate his rigid Times New Roman.
As exaggerated as that scenario may seem, it’s one I’ve experienced in many forms over the past few years. While I can’t say I’m thrilled with others’ reactions to my chosen genre, what really gets me is my own apologetic stance when it comes to chick lit. I like cupcakes. I like high heels. And I love pink! And while chick lit – or romantic comedy, or light women’s fiction or whatever you want to call it – books may not be in the running for the next Nobel Prize, they are fast-paced and relevant reads.
So why do I sometimes mutter the phrase ‘chick lit’ as if I’m admitting to a STD?
Like many writers, I studied English Literature at school, slogging my way through the great tomes – and flying through authors such as Sophie Kinsella in my down time. I was supposed to be awed by the mastery of the world’s greatest writers, but instead I was just counting the minutes until I could get back to my chick lit. In a way, it felt like my dirty little literary secret: I’d hide the covers on the tube and shove them under my bed, away from enquiring eyes.
Well, no more. From here on in, I’m dropping the repentant tone and standing strong. I’m Talli Roland, and I’m proud to write chick lit!
You see, chick lit can be fluffy and fun, sweetness and light – all those wonderful things that make it so entertaining. But it can also take on more serious issues with wit and understanding. From kick-ass heroines conquering the world to warm, emotional storylines, it tackles a wide range of topics relevant to women – and men. Beyond the pastel covers lies some seriously good writing by authors I’d pit against Dickens any day.
So give curlicues a chance. Or, at the very least, don’t back away from me at a party when I mention chick lit!
Talli Roland has three loves in her life: rom coms, coffee and wine. Born and raised in Canada, Talli now lives in London, where she savours the great cultural life (coffee and wine). Despite training as a journalist, Talli soon found she preferred making up her own stories — complete with happy endings.The Hating Game is her first novel and she is currently working on her second, Watching Willow Watts.