St. Louis is home to a fabulous annual film festival, STL Film Fest.
(True story: a few years ago at the festival, I saw an early screening of A Little Help starring Jenna Fischer–a.k.a. Pam Beesly–with Jenna Fischer. Like, she sat a row away from me while I watched her onscreen. Don’t worry guys, I totally kept it cool.)
This year, the festival is screening Love Between the Covers, a documentary about the romance novel industry.
Romance novels and their signature covers are ubiquitous around the world, but the millions of women who read, write, and love them remain oddly invisible. “Love Between the Covers” provides a corrective to that oversight, profiling six very different romance authors: Mary Bly (aka Eloisa James), Len Barot (aka Radclyffe), Beverly Jenkins, the team of Susan Donovan and Celeste Bradley, and Joanne Lockyer. A comprehensive overview of the genre, the film makes a persuasive case for romance novels as a feminist expression and emphasizes the diversity of romance lit (the principal subjects include African-American and lesbian writers). “Love Between the Covers” especially celebrates the surprising collegiality and lack of boundaries between romance readers and writers. Although the film offers fascinating insight into the book business — the massive popularity of romance novels essentially helps support the entire publishing industry, and the revolution in e-books and self-publishing has opened still more doors to aspiring writers — the primary focus is on the emotional and intellectual needs that the books fulfill in both authors and devoted fans.
And after the screening, look what’s happening:
With a video introduction by director Kahn and a post-film panel of local romance writers Lynn Cahoon, Eileen Dreyer, Angie Fox, Amanda Heger, Shawntelle Madison, and Claudia Shelton, moderated by Jeannie Lin, Missouri Romance Writers of America president.
Don’t worry guys, I’ll totally keep it cool.
Come hang out with me!