What Is Love? The dictionary entry says it's an intense feeling of deep affection, a deep romantic or sexual attachment to someone, or affectionate greetings conveyed to someone on one's behalf. But how can we know that we love another. You see two people holding hands, walking on the beach and kissing and think aww, they love each other. But is it love or lust? How do you tell if you love with someone or if it's just lust?
Some people believe you have to first have a very long courtship, dating for a long time, then do all the "right" steps, eventually moving into the stage of living together in the same house as the person you love for it to be real. That a relationship lived differently than the traditional norm isn't real. That everything has to be two people, living together as a family for the love to be real love.
But love doesn't work that way. As a romance writer I create stories of love, putting two or three people together who find something special, that others may see as wrong, but it's their relationship and their love. In the romance-writing world there is this notion that love isn't possible in the first few weeks of a relationship. That two people can't be instantly attracted to each other. Even when the author delays the L word till the end of the book, if two characters fall for each other in the first few meets then it's declared "insta-love" and the whole book is invalid. They declare that two people can't find love quickly, that they won't experience deep attraction, and that they won't say anything about a possibility of relationship until a long time has passed, months and months, and months of dating. But real life doesn't work that way. Real life is messy and complex, strange and crazy at time.
I've known many people who fall in love quickly. Some find love on the first date, running off to get married in Vegas and they are still together years later. Sometimes when two people meet, they hit it off so quickly; the chemistry is just right, so explosive that they know the other person is right for them. Other people date for years before they know. But every person is unique, finding their love and their life outside of what is the "norm." Saying that fictional characters can't fall in love quickly is a fantasy that doesn't really fit real life. People find love when they find love, not based on a timetable set in stone.
For me, I met my husband on a Thursday night at 6:32 in the evening on October evening in 1989. I knew by 7:45 that we would be married. You might think it was lust, but trust me, my husband wasn't the type of guy I lusted after. He didn't have the same body type, the right hair, the typical face or any of the other things I picked out on guys that I wanted to have a fun time with. No, when I met my husband and shook his hand, something passed between us, an undeniable attraction that had me instantly thinking of love and marriage. He was dating my roommate at the time so I had to wait for them to break up. By Thanksgiving we'd finally started dating. In January I moved in with him. We've been together every since. It took him longer to admit that what we had was love, but now he admits that he fell in love with me that first night but was too afraid to admit it, thinking that love couldn't happen that fast, but now wishes he would have been open to see it.
You see, Love knows no bounds. It doesn't adhere to your parameters and play by your rules. Love just is...And in romance books, however the author decides to write it, that's how they saw Love for their two characters, not the way you think it should be, but the way those characters demanded it to be.