Wednesday, January 8, 2020

What inspires me… 

When I asked Jenn if I could slide into her blog to help promote my newest book, she told me to write about something that inspires me as a blog post.

I have to tell you honestly, I sat at my computer for an hour before anything popped into my head. And even then, none of the things that did seemed right.

I write romance stories, mostly romantic comedies and books about families and all the warts and foibles that make each family – and each romance – individual and special. So, you might ask, doesn’t the concept of romanceitself inspire me?

Kinda. I mean, it’s fun to think up scenarios and meet cutes, then take the characters and put them through the emotional wringer before allowing them to be together. But that’s not the impetus, the real reason I write romances. A romance, in and of itself, isn’t what inspires me to pen them.

Well then, is writing about family my inspiration?

Again, the answer has to be kind of. The family structure is the backbone of civilization and society, but not all families are comprised of people who are related to one another by DNA. I’ve written a bunch of books where friends make up what are truly the bonding glue - the family -  in the protagonist’s life and not her blood relatives. So family is only a part of it.

I thought long and hard about this topic, folks. A few cups of tea and a brisk walk on the treadmill later and it finally came to me; what truly inspires me; why I write what I write.

It’s the capacity for human beings to believe in the concept of a Happily Ever After.

It’s not a myth, that HEA, despite what some will tell you. It real. It’s not a mythical unicorn or a tagline developed by Walt Disney to scroll at the end of his movies, but a living, breathing entity that we only have to glance around to see truly exists.

How else can you explain the overwhelming monopoly the romance book market holds in fiction sales? The financial success of RomCom films? The market share for the Hallmark channel from its never ending Holiday Romance Movies? In books, on television, at the movie theater, people want to see stories about finding an everlasting love, a Happily Ever After. 

People believe in a Happily Ever After. They yearn for it. Despite what the divorce statistics show us, and maybe even because of them, we still want to find our soul mates and believe we can, no matter what obstacles sit in our way. That’s the very concept and definition of faith, isn’t it? 

I believe we can, too, and more: I believe every person deserves their own HEA. Everyone deserves to be loved and adored, cherished and cared about. Despite all the darkness in the world, the light of an HEA burns brightly for everyone.

So, Jenn, thanks for giving me the impetus to discover this about myself!

Elite bodyguard and P.I. Rick Bannerman's job is to protect. He doesn't get emotional with his clients, but when a woman from his past is threatened, his next job becomes personal.

Family lawyer Abigail Laine is the target of a client's vengeful husband, but refuses Rick's offer of protection. He walked away from her four years ago, and she swore to forget him.

Now her reluctance to accept his help could cost Abby her life.

“Right there.” She aimed her fork at him as if it were a spear. “Perfect example. You know I hate being called Abigail. I’ve lost count of the hundreds of times I’ve told you and you still do it, knowing it pisses me off. And”—she cut him off before he could speak— “your usual response is to lift your hands and say ‘and still’ when you’re called on it. Who does that? What kind of person persistently and purposefully annoys people?” 
“So you’re saying I’m intentionally annoying?” 
“Persistently, so. Yes. Makes the lawyer in me wonder why.” 
Just the lawyer? “Any answers come to mind?” 

“Care to share?”

She placed her fork down next to her plate and regarded him across the table. “You really want to hear this? Because if you know anything about me, you know I’m truthful. I don’t hold back.” 
Oh, he was sure she didn’t. And wouldn’t. Her tenacity was one of the things he’d first been drawn to. 
That and her fabulous ass. 
“I’m a big boy,” he said with a grin. “I can take it. 
She took a sip of water first, her eyes trained on him the entire time. “Okay. If you really want to hear this.” 
He waved his hand for her to continue. 
“I think you use your cocky, aren’t-I-simply-too- witty attitude to keep people at a distance.” 
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Peggy Jaeger is a contemporary romance writer who writes Romantic Comedies about strong women, the families who support them, and the men who can’t live without them. If she can make you cry on one page and bring you out of tears rolling with laughter the next, she’s done her job as a writer!

Family and food play huge roles in Peggy’s stories because she believes there is nothing that holds a family structure together like sharing a meal…or two…or ten. Dotted with humor and characters that are as real as they are loving, she brings all topics of daily life into her stories: life, death, sibling rivalry, illness and the desire for everyone to find their own happily ever after. Growing up the only child of divorced parents she longed for sisters, brothers and a family that vowed to stick together no matter what came their way. Through her books, she’s created the families she wanted as that lonely child.

When she’s not writing Peggy is usually painting, crafting, scrapbooking or decoupaging old steamer trunks she finds at rummage stores and garage sales.

A lifelong and avid romance reader and writer, Peggy is a member of RWA and her local New Hampshire RWA Chapter.

As a lifelong diarist, she caught the blogging bug early on, and you can visit her at where she blogs daily about life, writing, and stuff that makes her go "What??!"

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  1. Always enjoy your posts, Peggy. Good luck with your new release.

    1. Thanks CB!!! Enjoy your day and happy writing/reading!

  2. I love this statement, Peggy, "It’s the capacity for human beings to believe in the concept of a Happily Ever After."

    All the best with your new release! I'm sure it will soar to success!

    1. AWWW, Mary, thanks! I really did have to think long and hard abt the impetus for my need to write romances. And as far as the success of the book : from your mouth to the book-buying public's ears!

  3. I agree completely, Peg! I believe in Happily Ever Afters, and people need them...desperately. That's why I always end my books with a HEA or--in the case of an ongoing serial-type series--on a positive note. You know I'm wishing you all the best with this new book and series!

    1. Judith - great writers, like great minds, think alike! hee hee.Thanks for you kind words!

  4. Great post. If we live without hope, what's the point. Wishing you all a HEA.
    D. V. 🦉

    1. D.V. RIGHT!!!! we need hope, especially during these dark days!

  5. Jenn- I wasn't kidding with that thankyou at the end of this piece. I really had to look - deeply - to find the reason for the inspiration, so thankyou, a million times, thankyou! Peg

    1. I'm so glad I helped you. Thank you for appearing on my blog!

  6. Hi Fives on the happily ever afters, Peg. I feel just the same-- Your words "the capacity of human beings to believe in..." HEA. Love the sound of you new book. All the best :)

    1. Barbara - thank you! I really believe in the HEA!!!!

  7. A lovely post! Family of choice is a favorite theme of mine--when fate doesn't give us a supportive family, we must build our own. Best of luck with your newest book.

    1. Sadira - I feel that way, too! Your family are thepeople who love you most and are present in your life - in many cases that's people non-dna'ed to you!