Writing business based romances comes with its challenges.  The major one being the working relationship between hero and heroine. 

I don’t write fantasy (although the events and characters are clearly fictional).  I can’t have the executive assistant falling in love with the CEO.  I often joke that those novels should be titled ‘The CEO’s Virgin Secretary And The Impending Lawsuit.’  Seriously ’cause all people involved in that relationship would likely get fired in real life.  Getting fired and then sued (and rightly so as the couple is literally screwing around on the shareholders’ dollars) is SO not sexy.

Most Fortune 500 companies have anti-fraternization clauses for execs and senior managers (if not everyone).  These clauses state that execs can’t date anyone working within the company.  Even if there are no official rules, the manager’s creed says that thou shall not fish in the company pond.  Getting caught doing so will make you unemployable (the business world is very small and extremely chatty).

It is also a strong statement on ethics.  I don’t consider using a role at work to help land a bed partner a heroic move.  The executive assistant turning down her boss’s advances is risking losing her job.  If the hero truly cared for her, he would never put her in that position. 

Then there is the imbalance of power.  Is the executive assistant (in the fairy tale romances, usually less educated, coming from the wrong side of the tracks) truly going to feel the equal of a CEO?  Especially when her day job is to do the bidding of the exec?  When push comes to shove (and alphas like to mentally push, it is a trait we’re known for), wouldn’t she back down?  Much to the disappointment of the hero? 

Yeah, difficulties all around in drafting the hero/heroine relationship.  In Breach Of Trust, the relationship between Anne and Philippe isn’t as clearly ‘wrong’.  Sure, she works for him on a temporary basis but more in a consulting role and as equals.  Even this causes big, big problems at work.  As it would and should. 

But then Philippe, as a venture capitalist, is a bit of a cowboy anyway.  A business rebel to his heart and that’s one reason Anne is attracted to him.  He isn’t afraid to break some rules.

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