As a wife and mother of three it amazes me that only 46 years ago, my family wouldn't have been legal!
On June 12, Alexa Day and I participated in the Loving Day Blog Hop to celebrate the anniversary of the Supreme Court decision, Loving v. Virginia, which invalidated laws that prohibited interracial marriage.
Why I write interracial romance
I read my first Harlequin when I was 11 years old-- and I was hooked. [Click here to read my blog post about my introduction to romance novels.] I'm not going to lie, those explicit love scenes were titillating. :-) But it wasn't long before I was swept away in the romance, the glamour, the relationships! I couldn't get enough. They sold boxes of Harlequin Presents at flea markets for $2.00 and before long, my room was full of every category trope you can imagine.
I carried a book with me everywhere, like an asthma inhaler or an EpiPen.
In school: instead of reading great lit-tra-chure, I was reading about the handsome boss and his plain jane secretary.
In church: I was thrilled when it was my turn to usher; my mom couldn't see what I was hiding in my hymnal!
At home: weekends were my favorite; nowhere to be and a book under my pillow.
But it didn't take long to notice that none of the heroines looked like me. One of the cornerstones of a romance novel is when the hero first "sees" the heroine. Pages were spent rhapsodizing about the heroine's beauty; her long silken blond, or red, hair; her large blue, or green, eyes and her silky soft pale skin. Yeah, none of that described me. And to a girl of 12, it almost felt like women who looked like me weren't worthy of a love story.
That all changed as more and more books about relationships between African American men and women were made available and I could finally read stories where sexy powerful heroes found big brown eyes, full lips and smooth cocoa skin desirable. I even wrote my own novellas for my friends so they could have their own fictional HEAs.
But 18 years ago I met the love of my life... and he was white. When the time came for me to pursue a career in romantic fiction, there was no question about the type of stories I would write. I would write stories that reflected my love journey and experience. Stories where men who looked like my husband fell in love with women who looked like me. When you read a Tracey Livesay novel you'll find powerful men, smart women, drama, passion and excitement. The fact that the hero and heroine are different races is a beautiful bonus.
True Love... in black & white.