What does it take to be considered a romance in the Christian fiction genre? Is it young love? A man who at the end proposes marriage? Is romance not for the middle-aged or already married?
I've considered all these things as I begin to write my new Amish Romance series and I've come to think that romance can (or should be) defined as when a couple comes together in unity in both mind, spirit and, (if they're married) body. I believe this is independent of age and marital status.
Can a dead marriage be made alive again? Through Christ I believe it can. I would consider that a romance, wouldn't you? But what if the couple didn't obey God's Word and came together anyway, in marriage or in body? Will we cast their problem out for secular audiences only, not willing to consider a Christian character who is less than perfect? Nay, there is redemption for them, too. That is both a romance and a realistic portrayal of what life is actually like.
And that's why you may find a book or two here and there in my series with characters who marry long before the happy ending.