I haven't read a lot of romances since writing them. Don't want to accidentally steal from them , yes, but that's is only one reason. The other is that I find myself unable to enjoy the story. I constantly edit sentence structure, rearrange how they're saying things, and adding or subtracting from the plot. It's annoying, I really want to enjoy the story!
However, this has had the advantage of allowing me to rediscover my love for historical fiction. Fiction not romance. And in doing so I've noticed a double standard. In so-called literary fiction the author gets away with a hell of a lot more that we mere romance writers. The dreaded head hopping, several plot holes never revised, and worst of all, lack of coherency.
Sure, the writing is decent, good, sometimes even great, but the story itself doesn't gel. It shifts POV, it grinds on with a plot that needs to be seriously shortened. Not always, of course, and not even with all books by a single author.
Generally speaking, though, fiction writers aren't held to such an exacting standard as romance writers. Why is that? Are our stories any less because we involve man/woman emotion and sex?