As a plus-sized woman who reads a LOT, I want my fiction with a side of curves. No, scratch that. I NEED my fiction with a side of curves. I am loud and proud about my love of romance novels, as well. A billion-dollar business with a 23% market share of the publishing industry,
I’m fairly sure I’m not the only one who’s gobbling up steamy romance novels, either. I love them so much that when I set my sights on writing a book, I knew Moonlight & Whiskey would be a novel within my favorite genre–contemporary romance.
Last time I checked, though, most American women were NOT rocking a size six, yet, the heroines in fiction–including the romance genre–rarely reflect my body type. Excuse me, but why is that? I’m curvy and my money spends just like anyone else’s so why does publishing ignore me as a consumer segment?
Which is exactly why I decided my heroine would be plus-sized like me.
There’s a revolution going on out there, ladies. Curvy women are sexy, passionate, sophisticated, disposable-income-wielding, fashion-loving, curve-rocking beauties. We’re raising our voices, embracing our bodies, and getting comfortable in our skin. We need our heroines to reflect the BOPO (Body Positive) shift.
They help empower us to keep moving forward and claw our way out of the boxes society places us in.
Curvy Reads: Moonlight & Whiskey
I’d like you to meet Avery–the heroine of Moonlight & Whiskey. An engineer that likes her dips and curves, she’s sick of the haters telling her that she should be ashamed of her body instead of embracing it. Determined to send them a big f*** you, she resolves to cut loose during a girls’ trip, hightailing her quick-mouthed, plus-sized self to New Orleans. So, what’s a smart woman with a little extra gotta do to get laid in this town?
Not much if you ask musician, Declan McGinn. Tall, dark, and tattooed, Declan prefers his women as curvy as his guitars. Avery’s sharp tongue and quick mind make him want her even more. As they burn up the sheets, Avery and Declan realize this is no one-night (or even one-week) stand.
But, for all her bluster, like most of us, Avery isn’t sure she can handle more rejection. Besides, Declan has demons of his own. Avery will have to decide to play it safe and protect her heart, or place her trust in the hands of a man who’s as tempting as the devil himself.
Why We Need Plus Size Heroines In Fiction
Avery’s journey reflects what so many curvy women already know. Learning to embrace your curves isn’t a single decision––we don’t just wake up one morning and think today’s the day I will quit having all negative thoughts about my body! Woohoo!––instead, it’s a process.
We all go back and forth. We all have good days where we feel sexy and confident. And bad days where the negative thoughts, or negativity of outside sources, intrude.
Moonlight & Whiskey’s heroine is a reflection of that process. Like most of us, she’s learning it’s okay to have good days and bad days. That the negativity of others isn’t a reflection of who she is, but of who they are. We need heroines like Avery who understand our dichotomy and persevere.
In a society where body-shaming is an acceptable form of prejudice, curvy heroines who are owning their BOPO journey, embracing their curves, and loving themselves are the oxygen of the revolutionary fire. We need more curvy & plus size centered books and reads like Moonlight & Whiskey to help reinforce that we are sexy, beautiful, strong, and smart. continually convey that we deserve respect and love, and are a direct affront to the negativity we face.
We need curvy heroines for the same reason women of color, LGBTQIA, neurodiverse, and disabled women need heroines that are a reflection of their journeys.
Because the world isn’t a size six, flawless, white woman with perfectly quaffed blonde hair, and not a care in the world, who’s likely clutching her pearls right now, and exclaiming, “Well, I nevah!”
The question isn’t why curvy women need curvy heroines. The question is, in a country where most women are a size fourteen or above, why don’t we have more plus-sized heroines?
Moonlight & Whiskey is available for purchase at all major ebook retailers.
Do you have a favorite romance novel with a curvy girl as the lead? Give it a shout out in the comments.
Source: Romance Writers of America website. https://www.rwa.org/Online/Resources/About_Romance_Fiction/Online/Romance_Genre/
Author Tricia Lynne is fluent in both sarcasm and cuss words. She’s drawn to strong, flawed heroines, and believes writing isn’t a decision one makes, but a calling one can’t resist. A member of the Romance Writers of America, she's also co-founder of All The Kissing - a blog for romance writers.