I hadn’t gone too far into my first book in the Princes of Danislova series (Kiss the Frog) when one of the secondary characters started to demand his own story. My hero is the crown prince and heir apparent for this small Eastern European country, and he took the heroine to his homeland to meet his family. My critique partners fell in love with my hero’s father, Prince Royal Friedrich VonRamsberg, and I’ll admit I did, too.
Friedrich is old school in all the most positive ways. He believes that his duty as a man is to cherish and protect the people in his care. He did that for his beloved late wife, and now he’s doing it for his sons. When he learns that my heroine’s parents aren’t taking care of her properly, he takes her under his wing as well. Unfortunately, he also has a duty to his country and its people, and tradition dictates that his heir should marry a woman trained to be a princes and rule by his side. As much as Friedrich comes to love my heroine, Felice, he knows he has to break her heart because his son must marry someone else.
Eventually, Friedrich chooses love over tradition, and my hero and heroine have their happy ending.
Okay, at this point, I’d totally fallen head over heels for Friedrich, and when readers started to ask me if I was going to write his story, I knew very well that I was.
I had to write the other two young princes’ books first, and Friedrich became a more and more complex character in each one. When I’d finished them, I launched into Friedrich’s story.
How do you write a romance for a couple over sixty? Pretty much the way you write for a younger pair. I’m convinced that romantic love is romantic love at any age. A more advanced age has a few unique problems, though. Some are physiological, and I’ll leave those up to your imagination. I hope I dwelt with them in a realistic but not un-romantic manner. Others are psychological. Specifically, insecurity about one’s body and whether the other person will find it attractive.
Can a man over sixty be sexy? Absolutely. Patrick Stewart as captain of the Enterprise always made my heart beat a little faster. Cary Grant was a leading man long after his hair turned white. In fact, I’d argue that the silver hair, paired with the twinkle in his eye, made him more alluring than when he was younger.
I like the wisdom that so often comes with maturity. I like a man who has the patience to take his time and do things right in the bedroom. I love the feeling that a man has spent decades learning his way around a woman’s body before he gets to mine.
Royal Affair is a novella, about half the length of the other books, so it costs 99 cents. If you read it, let me know if you think a man in his sixties can make a good romance hero.
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