Romance novels need a canon
"Bet Me" by Jennifer Crusie
This is why everyone hates those bratty millennials: The Oxford Dictionary Online has yet again legitimized 20-something narcissism and Internet culture with the addition of words like “twerk,” “badassery,” “selfie,” “derp” and “vom” to its online dictionary. As Time notes, “Like it or not, these words are symbols of culture as we know it in 2013.” (“Vom?” really?)
Here are a few of the 65 terms, which originate from trends in technology, Internet and pop culture:
• derp, exclam. & n. (informal): (used as a substitute for) speech regarded as meaningless or stupid, or to comment on a foolish or stupid action.
• emoji, n: a small digital image or icon used to express an idea or emotion in electronic communication
• FOMO, n.: fear of missing out: anxiety that an exciting or interesting event may currently be happening elsewhere, often aroused by posts seen on a social media website.
• jorts, pl. n.: denim shorts.
• selfie, n. (informal): a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.
• srsly, adv. (informal): short for ‘seriously’.
• street food, n.: prepared or cooked food sold by vendors in a street or other public location for immediate consumption.
• TL;DR, abbrev.: ‘too long didn’t read’: used as a dismissive response to a lengthy online post, or to introduce a summary of a lengthy post.
• twerk, v.: dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance.
• vom, v. & n. (informal): (be) sick; vomit.
Visit Quartz for more terms.
Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.More Prachi Gupta.
"Bet Me" by Jennifer Crusie
"Welcome to Temptation" by Jennifer Crusie
Another of Crusie's romantic comedies, this one in the shadow of an ostentatiously phallic water tower. Read the whole essay.
"A Gentleman Undone" by Cecilia Grant
A Regency romance with beautifully broken people and some seriously steamy sex. Read the whole essay.
"Black Silk" by Judith Ivory
A beautifully written, exquisitely slow-building Regency; the plot is centered on a box with some very curious images, as Edward Gorey might say. Read the whole essay.
"For My Lady's Heart" by Laura Kinsale
A medieval romance, the period piece functions much like a dystopia, with the courageous lady and noble knight struggling to find happiness despite the authoritarian society. Read the whole essay.
"Sweet Disorder" by Rose Lerner
A Regency that uses the limitations on women of the time to good effect; the main character is poor and needs to sell her vote ... or rather her husband's vote. But to sell it, she needs to get a husband first ... Read the whole essay.
"Frenemy of the People" by Nora Olsen
Clarissa is sitting at an awards banquet when she suddenly realizes she likes pictures of Kimye for both Kim and Kanye and she is totally bi. So she texts to all her friends, "I am totally bi!" Drama and romance ensue ... but not quite with who she expects. I got an advanced copy of this YA lesbian romance, and I’d urge folks to reserve a copy; it’s a delight. Read the whole essay.
"The Slightest Provocation" by Pam Rosenthal
A separated couple works to reconcile against a background of political intrigue; sort of "His Gal Friday" as a spy novel set in the Regency. Read the whole essay.
"Again" by Kathleen Gilles Seidel
Set among workers on a period soap opera, it manages to be contemporary and historical both at the same time. Read the whole essay.