Nothing to be ashamed of

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I was teaching an English course and we were talking about what they were during the holidays. And a lady said she’s embarrassed to share. She read a book but doesn’t want to reveal which one. My subconscious rolls her eyes because I’ve never gotten why anyone would feel shame because of a book.

Straightaway I knew what she meant and read. I press further. The pushy bastard that I am I wanted her to say it out loud. Because this – the judging from others and ourselves – needs to stop. She smiles shyly finally admitting that she read Fifty Shades. And she starts laughing nervously. And I? I went to full preacher mode. Why does enjoying reading romance novels have a stigma? Still? If I could, I’d shout it from the highest of rooftops. I read romance novels. I enjoy reading them. I love it. It relaxes me. And I’VE WRITTEN ONE (If you don’t believe me, check My works section.).

If you present anything as something worth feeling shame for, people will judge. Even about reading certain books. Who gives a shit? You read because it’s relaxing and entertaining. It occupies your mind so that you finally let go of some of the daily stress. And if a certain genre does that to and for you, you shouldn’t feel embarrassed.

When I go to a bookstore, I’ll probably leave with at least one romance novel (the last time I left with three but who’s keeping track). And if I start reading and it’s good, I know it will consume me and I’ll read it into the late hours of the night fully aware that I should go to sleep having to get up early in the morning for work but not caring enough to actually do it. In my mind what sleep deprivation takes from you, reading gives you. I will take the book with me. I’ll cherish every moment I can steal to open it during the day.

And I don’t care what anyone thinks. I read for me and not for anyone else. Reading romance novels doesn’t take anything away from my intelligence and character. It adds to it.

What is it about romance novels that people crease their noses at and judge? Why does it matter? And why does anyone care? Nobody should give it a second thought, not even a first one. It’s like a comedy film – you know it will make you laugh and be entertaining. That is what romance novels are. They are wildly enjoyable and captivating. They are a lot of fun. Why would you rob yourself of that? Read on!

Hope you’re all well.

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6 thoughts on “Nothing to be ashamed of

  1. It’s the same for authors. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard. “Oh, you write *those* sort of novels.” Uh, actually, no, mine are on the sweet side with not a lot of heat, but even if they were, thanks for devaluing them for no reason at all. I even had a friend I considered part of the family call my romance stories “simple” compared to her fantasy stories. And she didn’t mean simple in a good way. Yes, a friend did that. People are just . . . I don’t even know. Hopefully, the woman got a confidence boost talking to you and begins to know she shouldn’t be ashamed.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What you said is very true. It feels wrong to be judged by others while letting know what we like. Though I appreciate criticism in what I read, it very much offends me when I see people contempt me on the pretext that they know all about it. I too think that we should never be ashamed to say, moreover, to like any genre irrespective of what others say or think. Rather we should strongly opine on what we like and why we like it, unprejudiced.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s so true! There’s a book store in Bangalore where we can return the books after reading (not a library). And when I went to return the fifty shades of grey I had audience who were looking at me wierdly including the store guy.

    Liked by 1 person

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