My name is Chelsea Curran and I'm a newly published author! My first book "Unseen Road to Love" comes out April 11th, and I wanted to have the chance to connect with all my fellow LDS romance readers about the books we love so much, and why they make our hearts sing.
I'm a young single adult and spent the last six years trying to figure out the ins and outs of love. At 18, my parents decided to divorce. It wasn't messy, but it struck a raw nerve that forced me to see that growing up, the evidence of their love wasn't consistently present, especially later in their marriage. It was when my mother had agreed with the quote, "Love is what's leftover after the passion and the romance dies" that I wondered if love was even worth pursing. My parents were grieving over so much emotional heartache that it left me with very little hope for myself.
At the time I wasn't much of a reader besides enjoying the "Harry Potter series" or "Twilight", and my friends took it upon themselves to introduce me to the wonderful world of LDS literature. Over the past six years, I've read roughly 450 romance novels. Most LDS, others Christian themed or morally based. During this time of intense romantic study, I gained the perspective of literally dozens of authors and their take on what love is truly about. It's one thing to watch a movie where actors portray a feeling on behalf of the writer, but it's another to dive deeply into the thoughts of someone who truly believe love does exist and can be found.
Over time, I started gaining my own dating experience and began to apply what was real and what was fantasy based on what I read. What's amazing is that I was able to relate to LDS romances, not just for the obvious reasons, but because each story contains a certain amount of realism in love. If anybody knows of Anita Stansfield, then they know her content contains a lot of trials that people overcome not just in love, but in life. They are stories that people can relate to, such as dealing with divorce, infidelity, death, illness, etc., specifically in the church. These topics are disheartening, but real and allow people to feel a certain empathy in a situation where they lack emotional support. What's even better is that she applies gospel teachings in a realistic example to show how people can heal from it.
Of course there others that are just plain fun and put a comedic twist on issues that are my entire life. Living in the single's ward, my lifestyle is every bit as cheesy, dramatic, complicated and awesome as the books are. Finally, I was able to relate to something in bigger ways than "Twilight". Not to bag on "Twilight" but I think you know what I'm talking about.
Overtime, as I obtained my own philosophies and writing skills from education and observation, I decided to write my own novel. Gradually I gained more experience in life, refining my ways in how to deal a good story, but more importantly, I learned how to tell a real story directed to the hearts of people who feel the things as I do. I didn't have a big voice growing up, but this was my chance to say something that I learned from all my fellow authors out there. LOVE IS REAL AND ITS FANTASTIC...IF YOU WORK FOR IT. As a teen, I had little hope for it as I blossomed into adulthood, but I had authors willing to share their voice, who gave me what I needed to move forward with confidence and understanding in finding someone to experience it with. I wanted the chance to do the same for others, and so I wrote a story inspired by real events and people who have changed my life for the better. Cedar Fort Publishing felt I did just that!
If you want to know more, check out my website chelseacurranauthor.com or search my LDS romance novel "Unseen Road to Love" on Amazon, available for preorder. My friend and I also have a web show on YouTube called "Words on the Rocks" where we talk about dating in the singles ward and even reenact the awkward dating stories people send us. So tell me...what is your favorite LDS romance novel, and why?