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I first met this lovely lady at a Writers weekend at Robina on the Gold Coast in 2010. I had read many of her books and wanted to write in the same genre – Romance Medicals – and she was my inspiration to attend.

Marion’s session, “Romantic notions – The perfect Kiss,” was packed out. A tall lady, she had a delightful and friendly way of talking and the audience murmured appreciatively throughout, as she spoke.

“Romance is fun and fantasy, a chance to escape the serious times when life is tough,” she said, “it gives a sense of freedom to go into your head and just be someone else for a while.”

Being good at Maths she said had deflected her for thirty years into the Maths, Science stream. I felt an instant connection. 🙂

We laughed when she said her first book was written in a play pen because the kids had the rest of the house. It was her time out from the surrounding stress.

Market research wants Romance, she continued, with Georgette Heyer, Jane Austin and Dick Francis, notable writers who fall into this category. The heroine was best someone the reader could become; slip into her skin. She must be gorgeous, wealthy, never ‘unlike-able’ and never ‘over the top.’

The Hero must be to die for! Tall, let fantasy take a free hand here – tender, incredibly strong, capable and if angry, has a solid reason for it.  Marion explained he would never be a new age guy and wouldn’t help with the washing up because there was never any washing up to be done in her books.

Romance was central to the book with emotion building, conflict between the Hero and heroine – and she being ‘aware of him’ all the time. “Kisses never happen in isolation. A beautiful kiss will have a wonderful build up, will create a change and realization suddenly that ‘he/she’s special’,” as the heroine/Hero truly sees each other for the first time.

Research was vitally important and whether we touch lightly or write in depth, the topic has to be accurately portrayed. Hence her request to the AIDS hotline to ask if leopard seals contracted AIDS. She was told chimps and green monkeys get it but are not sick.

At the end we asked her to name which of her own, was her favourite story. With her love of animals, especially dogs it was easy to see why “Falling for Jack,” one of her earlier novels fit the bill.

The following link to this excerpt will demonstrate why Romance and Medicine, along with the care of animals IMO, go hand in hand.