Contemporary Romance is Alive and Well, Right?

I noted in passing the other day a passing comment on twitter, that a particular writer would “save the contemporary.”

Does the contemporary need saving? It doesn’t look like it to me.

From perusing bookstore shelves, I see contemporaries and historicals in about equal numbers. If you add in category romance, almost all of which is contemporary, the numbers go up quickly. Also, Nora Roberts and Susan Elizabeth Phillips, two of the largest selling romance writers, publish contemporaries.

Plus, it looks to me like contemporary even has its own subgenres, romantic suspense and contemporary humor, as well as combinations thereof, none of which appears to be in danger. Linda Howard or Meg Cabot, anyone?

What am I missing? Do categories not count? Do the subgenres like romantic suspense not count? Is the contemporary in “danger” because there are fewer authors but with larger sales? Or am I missing the point entirely?

Happy Friday!

About Victoria Janssen

Victoria Janssen [she, her] currently writes cozy space opera for Kalikoi. The novella series A Place of Refuge begins with Finding Refuge: Telepathic warrior Talia Avi, genius engineer Miki Boudreaux, and augmented soldier Faigin Balfour fought the fascist Federated Colonies for ten years, following the charismatic dissenter Jon Churchill. Then Jon disappeared, Talia was thought dead, and Miki and Faigin struggled to take Jon’s place and stay alive. When the FC is unexpectedly upended, Talia is reunited with her friends and they are given sanctuary on the enigmatic planet Refuge. The trio of former guerillas strive to recover from lifetimes of trauma, build new lives on a planet with endless horizons, and forge tender new connections with each other.
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