Here to challenge the views of what seems to be the majority comes a new, hilarious, and overtly honest podcast dedicated to the ever so “naughty” literary genera of romance novels. Boobies & Noobies challenges the not so seasoned, aka I’ve never read a romance novel in my life, to open their minds to this unexplained taboo section of books and just give it a go, if it is for one time.
Creator and host of Boobies & Noobies, Kelly Reynolds, sat down with us to talk about her show, it’s hilarity, and why she feels there is no reason to be ashamed of the genre.
SO TELL US ABUT BOOBIES & NOOBIES, HOW DID IT COME TO BE?
Boobies & Noobies is, more than anything, a passion project! I launched the podcast this summer in Los Angeles, though I've taken the show on the road to Chicago and San Francisco, too, and I'm happy to say that we've recorded 17 episodes since June. I wish I could say there was a specific moment, something memorable that sparked the idea for a podcast, but truthfully, it just came to be. I've been a romance reader for years and, for years, I've endured great judgment, sarcasm, and side eye from my friends, all because of my taste in literature. I became a fan of podcasts more recently while living in Chicago and enduring the daily commute via public transportation. I figured why not put together two of my favorite things...with a slight twist. On every episode of Boobies & Noobies, I ask a novice romance reader (or two) to read and review a romance novel with me. Think of it as payback for all those years of judgment.
HOW DO YOU PICK WHAT BOOKS TO READ FOR THE PODCAST?
The book selection process definitely varies! I always asks my guests if there's something in particular they're interested in reading. This may shock a lot of people, but romance has so many sub-genres: paranormal, historical, contemporary, etc. Then there are sub-sub-genres: pirates, shifter/werewolves, motorcycle club, etc. Plus the graphic nature of romance varies as well; I'm not looking to make anyone (too) uncomfortable. That being said, if they're up for anything, then all bets are off! There's a HUGE novelist/reader/book blogging community on Twitter and Instagram, so I grab a lot of great ideas from there. Also, while I try to select books that I haven't read beforehand, I do fall back on authors I've read and enjoyed in the past. That way, I know that what we're going to read will most likely be good (though, not always).
HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN INTO ROMANCE NOVELS?
I can remember the very first romance novel I read and when I read it. The book was I'm in No Mood for Love by Rachel Gibson and I read it during winter break, freshman year of college. I was actually never much of a reader growing up, so I can't really say what prompted me to pick up a romance, but I'm glad I did. My mom has been an avid romance reader for years - she and my grandma are always swapping books - and this was one of hers. It was the perfect blend of romance, comedy, and "naughty bits" that every nineteen-year-old secretly wants to read, but is ashamed to ask for. After that, I was hooked! Here we are, nearly ten years later, and I eat romance novels like candy...and then I share that candy with my mom and grandma.
WHAT’S THE BEST PART OF CREATING BOOBIES & NOOBIES?
That's got to be the actual podcast recording! Everyone has been so enthusiastic about the process, especially considering the environment in which we work. I mean, this is a low-to-no budget operation, we record at my dining room table in Los Angeles, most of the guests are friends and co-workers...you get the picture. This podcast could not exist without the wonderful folks that show up every Saturday to sit down and talk erotica with me, free of charge. And more often than not, we have a BLAST! You can hear it in the episodes - the laughing, the hi-jinx, etc. It's not work (though a lot of work goes into the planning and editing). The recording process itself is all about having fun, which is why I love it so much.
WHY DO YOU THINK THEY GET SUCH A BAD WRAP?
That's a great question, but it's also one that punches my buttons. It amazes me that in 2018, we've had shows like Girls and Sex and the City and Orange is the New Black, all of which feature sex and female sexuality so prominently, yet we still feel the need to shield a book cover, just because it features a woman's heaving bosoms. The book covers may have changed since the days of Fabio, but for some reason, our attitude towards them has not. If you listen to the podcast, you'll hear several of my guests describe romance as "written porn", but it's so much more than that. Romance novels have strong characters, engaging plot lines, and story arcs, like any other novel. Sure, some of them are better than others, but the same can be said about any genre. That's definitely one of my goals with this podcast: to demystify the genre and reclaim the genre in a positive light.
ARE ROMANCE NOVELS YOUR FAVORITE GENRE?
Abso-freaking-lutely. I think it also goes back to the fact that I'm also a screenwriter and my genre of choice is and always has been, romantic comedy (I'm talking way before Netflix jumped on the romcom bandwagon, though I'm loving that romcoms are on the rise again). Some of my favorites include Irresistible You by Kate Meader (which we read for the podcast), Too Much Temptation by Lori Foster, Vincent by Sarah Brianne, and Drumline by Stacy Kestwick. I tend to gravitate more towards contemporary romance, as I find it much easier to relate to than say a historical novel, though I'm a sucker for anything by Lisa Kleypas. Moreover, romances that feature strong, self-sufficient women and slightly aggressive, yet witty gentleman suitors are my faves. I like a good woman that puts her man in his place!
HOW CAN PEOPLE BE MORE OPEN MINDED WHEN IT COMES TO ROMANCE NOVELS?
I am a firm believer in the "try everything thrice" mentality. For example, every time a new season of American Horror Story comes out, I always watch at least three episodes before giving up. Sometimes I even make it to six. Are you going to know that you love and/or hate the romance novel genre after reading one book? Absolutely not. One book does not define an entire genre. I'd recommend that new romance readers explore the genre and find something that they can connect with. Do you fantasize about pirates? Fabulous - grab a Kat Martin swashbuckling romance. Find motorcycle men hunky? Perfect - check out the Regulators series by Chelsea Camaron & Jessie Lane (it's very Sons of Anarchy). There's a little something for everyone - all it takes is a quick Amazon search.
DESCRIBE YOUR SLAY.
I SLAY by staying busy 24/7. Whether I'm writing, reading, teaching, or what have you, I look at every opportunity as just that: an opportunity. It helps that I love the work I do, because then it doesn't feel like work. Do I make barrels of cash doing it? Absolutely not. Do I have an awesome time and meet a lot of amazing people? Heck yes. And at this point in my life, I value that so much more than any amount of money.
You can find Boobies & Noobies across most of the popular podcast platforms such as, iTunes, Podbean, Stitcher, and Spotify. Make sure to stay updated with new episodes and adventures through Twitter and Instagram.