Natasha Oakley - British Romance Author

Writer of tug-at-the-heartstrings, feel-good romance for Harlequin Mills & Boon

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The reason we need category fiction!

For me, the hardest thing about blogging has been trying to decide whether I should mention all the trials and tribulations of my life. For the last six years I seem to have been a mecca for all things depressing. In fact, it's why I began writing in the first place and, judging from some of the heartbreaking emails I've received, it's why a good number of you read it. Life can be tough. And mine has taken another downward shift.

We had good news concerning my husband's cancer - but within two days my mum was diagnosed with advanced ovarian cancer. At this precise moment I feel cold and sick. And I'm tired from juggling all the millions of things I need to do each day.

Writing will be my solace. There is nothing better than disappearing into a world where I'm in complete control. My fellow Pink Hearters tease me for rejecting all books and movies that don't give me a happy ending - but who can blame me??

What I love most about writing for 'Romance' is that I'm able to give my characters real problems and issues - the kind we all face - and then I can give them the resolution we all desperately want for our own lives. We're having fun in the Pink Heart Society defending category fiction from those who denegrate it - but what's to defend? If the books we write and read celebrate love triumphant what's wrong with that?


  • At 8:22 am, Blogger Michelle Styles said…

    I am right there with you.

    HEA are important. They remind people that things are not always black or depressing. They give people a reason to believe.
    Yes, it may be a *fantasy* but it is a worthwhile one. Why is it wrong to look at rainbows in muddy pools?

    Hugs on your personal circumstances.

  • At 11:35 am, Blogger Kate Walker said…

    Natasha love

    Just wanted to send you hugs and thoughts. You know I'm always here as a shoulder to lean on/cry on/pound on - whatever - if you need it.

    Like you I have had many letters from readers who have more than they can cope with in real life, with no promise of happy ever after endings for them, so they don't want to read about them in fiction as well.

    You give so much warmth and love to people in your life that it shows in your books - it can't help but do so. And that is what gives your books a very special feeling too. I just hope that those hard realities of life ease for you soon.

    Thinkig of you



  • At 12:27 pm, Anonymous Kate Hardy said…

    Natasha, honey - what t'other Kate said. You know where I am, and if you need to escape for a couple of days I'm here.

    Really glad to hear about your other half, but hugs on your mum. Been there (was breast cancer, which is why I was so pleased that M&B is supporting breast cancer campaign this month and my Mod Ex is part of that) so I'm here when you me.

    love and hugs
    Kate H

  • At 1:14 pm, Anonymous Nicolette said…

    So sorry to hear your Mum's news. We've received the same news in my husband's side of the family about his aunt and it's awful the grief and fear that cancer generates.
    Hugs and best wishes to you all.

  • At 4:45 pm, Blogger Sue aka MsCreativity said…

    I'm so sorry Natasha for everything that's come your way for you and your family.

    You are such a strong person, and Kate W is spot on - your warmth comes out in your writing and makes your books the wonderful read they always are. You have a very special gift.

    Thoughts and prayers for your family.


  • At 9:50 pm, Blogger Barb said…


    I'm so very sorry to hear about your mother's ill health on top of all the problems you've had.
    But I'm glad though that you do find solace in writing. It can be a great way to de-stress. And it's wonderful that you bring others so much pleasure at the same time.
    So yay!! for category romance!!!

    Lots of love,
    Barbara xx

  • At 11:49 pm, Blogger Nicola Marsh said…


    you're so right.
    When real life gets too hard, we can always find solace in creating our own HEA.

    I'm here for you.

    Nic x

  • At 8:48 am, Blogger allyblake said…

    Natasha, I had no idea you'd heard good news about your hubby. That's so wonderful. How easy is it for these mercies to get swallowed up in bad news.

    Happy endings are not to be sniffed at my friend. And you are a creator of some beauties. As a reader, thanks forever. And as a friend, sending you every happy thought that good news continues to prevail.


  • At 4:29 pm, Blogger Marcy said…

    So sorry to hear about your mother. My thoughts and best wishes are with you.


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