Tell me a story. A story I can get lost in. A story that doesn't take me step by step through the character's sex life. One that makes me care, makes me laugh out loud or smile, maybe a tear or two, happy tears, and when it's done, make me feel as though I've made some friends. Friends I'll miss and care about. Friends I'll want to visit often. Maybe I'll start from the beginning, right then when it ends.
A special blog post joining other celebrations to mark the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark decision in Loving vs.Virginia, which struck down anti-miscegenation laws in the United States.
Growing up, I was fortunate to have an array of friends from different cultures, colors and backgrounds. Naturally my choice of boyfriends, crushes and guys friends ventured into that territory as well. I loved writing since the age of 10 years old and my stories reflected couples of the interracial persuasion. As a woman of color, I didn't see many faces like mine in the books, plays and stories I read. I loved sci-fi, fantasy, historicals and eventually I veered into romance and I loved reading about the development of the couples from the first meeting to the eventual promise to love and venture through life together forever. My heroines looked like me. They were adventurers, businesswomen, kick-butt females, whip smart and varied in their personalities but they were usually women of color with men of different races.
As I wrote, I experienced these adventures right alongside my characters. While they were of different races and backgrounds, the differences of their races rarely served as the main conflict (maybe a side conflict or two ;-)) but took a side to showcase my complex characters. Eventually, after searching for my own prince charming, he arrived and I began to live my own real life novel. Writing has always been number one in my life. But now, as my life began to change in the past few years, my writing has stepped aside to allow for my upcoming life as a girlfriend, fiancee turned bride transforming into a wife. The adventures (or perhaps misadventures) of wedding planning is enough to fill a War and Peace sized volume of drama but I couldn't help thinking about the timing of our wedding and how close I will be to the landmark Loving case.
Today is Loving Day. 46 years ago, Richard and Mildred Loving fought to marry. Due to miscegenation laws that barred different races from marrying, the Lovings took to the courts in a case against the state of Virginia and eventually overturned the laws. It's hard to think of such a time that merely existed a few decades ago where a man and woman couldn't marry merely because they were different races. They loved each other, supported each other and cared so much about each other to fight racism, hate and injustice just to love. My first exposure to this amazing couple was via the mainstream HBO movie starring Timothy Hutton and Lela Rochon (which I later read was exaggerated) and even though some of it was fictional, I was still entranced by this couple that fought great odds. They were a reflection of my relationships and as we come to the date this year, there is something different. I will be marrying my version of Richard in just 4 days and a few days after that, my new home will be in Virginia. It's a surreal feeling knowing that I would be in the state where a federal court decision affected all 50 states regarding interracial marriage. Here I will be starting my new life as one half of an interracial couple. Overall, I am ecstatic to be marrying my best friend in this new life and I'm already getting new ideas for stories as a new wife.
After the honeymoon, the writing will be taking off again. I have a lineup of new releases that have been in the wings that will resume and some near the end of their release. 2013 is a year of lots of change and a return to the thing I love most as a career. Everyday I count my blessings for meeting the love of my life and doing what I love. A big thank you to all my readers who have been there on my writing journey reading each of my books and waiting for the next. Thanks for your patience, support and time. I look forward to diving back into the waters and to bring you guys a new round of stories, diverse characters and fun stories you can read over and over again.
Click to visit author TJ Michaels next up on the Loving Day Blog Hop!
Loving Day (Pre-Release) Book Giveaway
I'm giving away some upcoming releases to arrive (tentatively) later this year! To enter, just leave a comment below along with your email addy and tell me which book you are interested in receiving when they are ready!