Tea and Biscuits Discussions: The “Round Table” of The New York Times

As many of your know, and if you don’t know about this article, then read on because I am going to be telling you all about it. There was a article that came out at the end of September and it was BIG news for the romance book community. It was on the front page, featured images of some of our favorite romances and authors. When I first heard about this article I was ecstatic, I mean especially with the New York Times considering their stance on romances and they haven’t been the best source to find those good romances that are keepers on the shelf.  So to see such a big time newspaper feature  a romance article I was intrigued. At first, I only skimmed it and didn’t really read it to be honest. I was a bit tired after a long day at work and then a few days ago, I kept seeing a ton of negative comments on twitter and on my blog feed about this article, and I was curious about what was so bad about it? So I just needed to know and wanted to put in my two cents since romance has brought so many good things for me. If you are curious and haven’t read this article check it out HERE

Well I read the article and couldn’t believe that words that were written. I was actually pretty shocked to tell you the truth. Because this writer (and I could care less about his credentials) knows nothing about what romance fiction is actually about. My overall feeling after reading his article, was a numb like feeling, with mixes of anger and frustration and it definitely had hardly any positive outlook on romance novels, and if there were some positive comments, it was written in such a way that came off as sexist and demeaning. It is obvious that the author of the article Robert Gottlieb is very condescending when it comes to women especially and many things he says here are something you would expect from the 70’s. It is interesting that they would choose someone that obviously doesn’t understand the genre at all. I would have preferred someone that at least enjoyed reading romance, but could still write a article that is objective.

I have lost much of my respect for The New York Times after reading this, I still can’t believe that the editors were okay with this article being published. It would have been nice if they had picked someone younger than say 80 years old right? Someone that isn’t sexist, racist, misogynistic and prejudiced against the romance genre. Well hats off to you Mr. Gottlieb for insulting a multi million dollar business and hundreds of thousands of the readers that love and admire this genre. Another downer on what he mentions is the genres. Its another obvious reason he doesn’t read romance because he implies that there is only two genres in romance contemporary and historical (regency) and I was like WHOA!! Rewind, because there are so many sub genres in romance. It may have been historical and contemporary ten or fifteen years ago however today there are many sub genres in romance like: Various era in historical, contemporary, new adult, paranormal, fantasy, urban fantasy, science fiction, mystery and dystopian/futuristic.

I really struggle with people that have this view of romance, and you know what I work with many of these type of people. It just would have been nice to have an article in the NYT that portrayed a positive outlook on romance instead of this condescending words that made me feel lower than low. But I guess it has its upsides too its just hard to see. I think there are a few positives even if its not what we want as readers and lovers of this genre. If you ignore the writing, we see photos of some great authors that are being recognized—but it is a bittersweet feeling. My overall thoughts on this article is that I am highly disappointed that such an article was written, in fact it saddens me that this type of article was even written.

Have you read this article yet? What are your thoughts on it?

What do you appreciate most about romance?