Laura Haley-McNeil

7/1/18, Kiss and Love

Hello, Everyone!

I hope you had a great week. Summer seems to roll in rather lazily and then picks up steam as the days past. I’m not sure if it’s because I find more things to do or if I’m afraid I won’t complete all my summer plans before fall arrives and the kids are back in school. Scary thought!

About a year ago I read an interesting article about Pride and Prejudice and the words that are used in the novel. I wish I could remember who wrote the article. Though I’ve searched the internet, I’ve yet to find the proper search term that will lead me to that article, but what this author wrote made quite an impression on me. I try to relate the point that made an impression on me.

The author, and I don’t remember if the writer was a man or woman so for simplicity’s sake, I’ll assume a woman, but if I’m incorrect, please accept my apologies. In the article, she discussed the number of times the words “kiss” and “love” were used in Pride and Prejudice and compared that with the number of times they’re used in a contemporary romance novel. The difference is astounding, and I don’t remember the number, but these words were used much more frequently in Pride and Prejudice than in contemporary novels. I don’t believe the word “Kiss” was used as often, according to the article, but the word “Love” was used frequently.

I won’t go through these books and count the number of times these words were used, but the point of the article is that these are very powerful words, which Jane Austen must have understood. As I read the article I started to think about books I’ve read that rarely use the word “Love.” Something I have noticed when I read is that characters no longer “make love”, but instead, “have sex.” That term is used very frequently and it seems almost clinical. The phrase doesn’t stir much emotion for me.

If what the author wrote is true, and assuming I’m remembering the article correctly, I’m saddened that two such powerful words in our language are falling out of disuse. Romance writers write about romance and what words could be more important than “kiss” and “love?” As writers, we should consider that what we want to portray is the emotion of our characters. What could be more emotional than two people falling in love?

Just a couple of words to ponder.

I hope you have a great week and that good things are happening to you.