The Romance Genre on the Web

Researching online romance genre communities and their perspectives

Under 18? Please read this page!

This blog is part of a research project for my PhD candidature at the University of New England in Armidale, New South Wales, Australia. This means that comments made on this blog will be used by me to help me understand what people who read and write romance books think about the genre, and that I might quote some of those comments in my thesis and the journal articles and conference papers that I present arising from this research project.

Because this is a publicly accessible blog on the web, I have no way of knowing the age of people who participate. So, if you’re under 18 years old, before you comment on this blog, I ask you to please read the Information for Blog Participants page and talk with your parent/s or a responsible adult about this blog, and whether, and how, you should participate.

The following are some questions you or your parents might have, and the answers:

Can I read the blog and contribute to it by commenting?
Yes, this blog is open and anybody with an interest can contribute by posting comments on the entries in response to the issues being talked about. There are teenagers who read the romance genre and, while I’m not specifically researching teenagers’ perspectives in this project, I am interested in comments from across the whole readership.

What name should I use if I comment?
If you do decide to contribute to the blog by commenting, remember that it’s not wise for young people to post information like their full name, or address, or other information that might make it easy for someone to find you. You should use a screen name or pseudonym (a made-up name) if you post. The software does ask for an email address (to reduce spam comments), but this is NOT published on the blog, and I will never pass it on to anyone else or publish it.

What if I make a comment, and then change my mind about it?
If you want to add something else, or expand on your ideas more, you can post another comment. But if you want your comment deleted, just send me an email telling me which comment it was, and what name you posted it under, and I’ll delete it.

What rating is this blog? Should I be reading it?
This research blog will discuss romantic fiction, which is a very broad definition of a genre of books that has as its main focus romantic relationships. Romance books range from the very sweet, in which sexuality is scarcely mentioned, right through to much spicier, explicit content. So, there may be some posts that will discuss how sexuality and sexual relationships are portrayed in the romance genre, which may include some short snippets of writing in the context of that discussion. There won’t, however, be post after post of explicit, graphic language, or pornographic images or other similar types of purely adult content.

If I feel that the content of the post or the comments is more explicit than say, what you might see on TV at 8.30 at night, I’ll put an advisory note in the post that it contains ‘adult themes’, and the bulk of the post on a clickable link, so that you and your parents can decide whether that’s appropriate for you.

What if I have other questions?
If you or your parents want to ask me any other questions about the research blog, please do so. You can do that in one of two ways:
1. You can email me at and I’ll answer you privately OR
2. You can post a comment on this page, and I’ll post a reply to this page answering your questions (so others can see the question and answer).

Please note that if you email me and I don’t respond within a couple of days, it may be that your email has been mistaken for spam, (I get a lot of it!) so please try again.