What's hot right now in reading and writing: NOIR

What Is Noir?
by Susan D. Taylor

Noir is a french term for black. British Gothic novels were termed "roman noir" back in the 18th century. Welcome the 20th century and America took a piece of the noir pie by creating a hard boiled thriller in paperback form that become all too popular.

I laughed reading the Merriam-Webster's definition.
Definition of NOIR (1): crime fiction featuring hard-boiled cynical characters and bleak sleazy settings.


The cover of seminal hardboiled magazine Black Mask, September 1929, featuring part 1 of its serialization of The Maltese Falcon, by Dashiell Hammett. Illustration of private eye Sam Spade by Henry C. Murphy, Jr.

We then have to contemplate the term hard-boiled. Not too difficult: think egg. That's right. According to Wikipedia "Hardboiled (or hard-boiled) fiction is a literary genre sharing the setting with crime fiction (especially detective stories)."

Now where doe that take us. Straight to Pulp Fiction or hard-boiled gangster films, another lick on transaggressive fiction popsicle.  

What about romance? Romance deals with emotions. The emotional aspects of the story are brought to us through internalization, nuances, non-verbal communications portrayed by the writer through each character. In noir there's a depth and breath of emotion that is delivered in the form of darker feelings such as apprehension, fear, rage, revenge, terror and the like. Noir is on the rise. Not really news but then again, in the publishing world it is.

Harlequin just announced another line of romance. Take a look at what they're seeking for submissions. Got that dark edgy romance and don't know what to do with it? Aha...now you've got options.

Harlequin Intrigue Noir
"We are looking for a darker, sexier, unbound counterpart to the Harlequin Intrigue romance series. At Harlequin Intrigue Noir we want authors to push the boundaries of the traditional romance with gritty stories of contemporary romantic suspense. Hard-boiled crime and dangerous situations are foreplay for your hot, hot heroes and sophisticated heroines. Here there are no restrictions to their steamy and risky encounters. Revamped, revved up and replete with graphic details—that's the Harlequin Intrigue Noir crime story that we want. More or less than 70,000 words.
  • High sensuality
  • Movie Examples: Out of Sight, Haywire, Tequila Sunrise, The Last Seduction, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Blue Velvet

Many publishers are actually seeking this darker sides to romance. With the rise of vampires and shapeshifters, readers are ready to delve into sinful seduction.



My recommendation for the holidays!

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