"All love is sweet, given or returned. Common as light is love, and its familiar voice wearies not ever."– Percy Bysshe Shelley
All love? What about bad love? With Valentine's Day, celebrating "LOVE," I'm reflection on how "bad love" figures into good writing.
Many of my novels, short stories, and plays are built around toxic relationships--perhaps because of personal experiences (as well as observation of those of friends and relatives.) I don't mean difficult relationships--I mean truly toxic relationships--where a partner is abusive, addicted, even criminal.
This situation, while tragic in real life, supplies the writer part of my brain with intimate knowledge of the tensions, the suspense, and the dangers of adapting to and/or escaping from such situations. The sensitive person suffers for loss of love, for loss of illusions, and yes even for the loss of truly bad love.
This paradox has been the heart of my mysteries--a woman who somehow has been caught up in a marriage or relationship that has turned deadly--how will she use ingenuity, courage, and physical strength to escape and build a new life? Will she survive (sometimes she doesn't) thrive, find good love? (You can take a journey of suspense as bad love unravels in Crimson Ice and Double Deception.)