Two series romance authors (and best friends) Lynn Raye Harris and Kimberly Lang discuss writing for Harlequin Presents. The authors talk about what makes series romances the "most amazing books in the world", share their experiences at the RT Convention and reflect on hitting the best-seller list.
Contemporary romance author Jane Porter shares some essential lessons on emotional writing for aspiring authors.
Writing women’s fiction is about writing stories that are relevant to our women readers. According to Donald Maass, in Writing the Breakout Novel, today’s readers want an authentic experience. So if many modern-day readers expect to live the story through the mind of the character, than its our job as writers is to make the experience as real as possible. We must infuse our characters with depth and emotional integrity.
Last August in New Zealand I attended an all day seminar given by Christopher Vogler. It was an amazing session and he talked about how people are always looking for meaning in life, and how we especially look for it in stories. Readers crave stories that help them sense of life. Readers want to connect emotionally and spiritually.
So how do we write emotion? How do we show rather than tell?
I. KNOW YOUR CRAFT
There are six different techniques for conveying emotion in fiction writing:
1. Stating emotion - The easiest means of adding emotion to a story is for the narrator to simply state the character's emotion.
In the world of fiction we love to read about men who are bigger than life. Heroes and daredevils. I’ve found that most of the time it’s hard to define the line between the two. In life, as well as in books, there seems to be a certain kind of man who walks the knife’s edge between one and the other.
In my stories I love to create a hero who fights for what is right, who wins battles against injustice or saves the day, but there is another kind of man who takes one step further along the road. The daredevil, the man who doesn’t see, or fear death. He lives in many fields. He’s the barnstormer among pilots, the bull rider among rodeo people, the Special Forces in the military.
Historical romance author Maggie MacKeever explores the ugly side of Regency England with a heroine who has been forced to become able to fit in at both a ball and a bar. Learn about the historical truths that inspired The Tyburn Waltz in this special author message and then enjoy an excerpt of the story!
I was seduced by Georgette Heyer in the 70’s, and haven’t recovered from it yet. Since then I’ve written forty-three novels, most of them set in the English Regency.
The Regency was an era of contrasts, a time of artistic refinement and cultural achievement; social, political, and economic change; bloodshed and warfare. Regency London was an excellent example of the immense contrast between rich and poor. One street might be lined with noble colonnades, bow windows and gleaming doorknockers; the next with gin-shops, pawnbrokers and broken-down dwellings so squalid they oozed filth.
Series Romance Fans, thank you for your patience!
We know you've had quite the wait for the reviews of the Harlequin Romances from November 2010. However, now you can browse through all six reviews online. Be sure to check them out to find out which novel RT Reviewer Pat Cooper calls a "sweetly romantic and sexy holiday romance that readers will find the perfect fit for their Christmas stocking reading." Answer Here >>
Anne O’Brien’s new historical fiction, The Virgin Widow, shows King Richard III in a very different light than other fictional works. Now the author discusses why she made this choice and provides a snapshot of her version of the king in an excerpt at the end of the post.
Writing history as romance can be a challenge, but a fascinating one. The hero and heroine must be worthy of the role or it just doesn’t work. Some lovers leap from the page of the historical novel: Abelard and Eloise, Katherine Swynford and John of Gaunt, Lord Nelson and Emma Hamilton. Some most certainly do not, and for many readers, Richard of Gloucester, later to be Richard III, heads the list.
It was my deliberate choice to write Anne and Richard’s story as a romance.
I was thrilled when HCI Books invited me to write one of the launch titles for True Vows, their new line of Reality Based Romance™—and also apprehensive. Since selling my first book in 1983, I’ve seen eighty-six of my romance novels published. I’ve written comedies, dramas, novellas, series romances and stand-alone novels. But True Vows was an entirely new concept: romance novels based on the courtships of actual couples.
In all the other novels I’d written, I’d made everything up. I’d created the characters, the stories, the conflicts. Could I write a novel in which the characters were real people? Could I shape a dramatic, passionate romance novel out of an actual love affair?
Traditional romance novels are usually about one woman getting her HEA. Sometimes she has a friend, co-worker or family member who falls in love in the same book, but as a rule, it is the romance between one hero and one heroine that is the main focus. It is rare to find romance novels where the heroine's friends are as much a part of a woman's story as her hero is. However, Nora Roberts has created just this with her outstanding series the Bride Quartet.
In these books, readers get to know the inner workings of four dynamic characters - Mac, Emma, Laurel and, the binding force behind them all, Parker. These women have been best friends since they were little, and have recently come back together to create a business where each of them is an equal partner. The series starts with the Quartet, as the women are called, living together on an estate outside of New York City planning weddings for bridezillas and loving every second of it. During each of the stories, one of the ladies finds true love, but at no point does this love get in the way of their deep and abiding sisterhood.
Fans of Nora Roberts have been treated with lasting female friendships before. Examples of this can be found in the Stars of Mithra series, the Dream Trilogy, or from the male POV the Chesapeake Bay Saga. But while in earlier series' this friendship is only a part of the whole story, the Bride Quartet is actually structured around a friendship that oftentimes takes precedence over the character's love lives.
Best-selling historical romance author Jillian Hunter talks about her latest Regency hero, a writer who has stumbled upon "the bad boy phenomenon" in his serialized stories. And don’t miss the excerpt and GIVEAWAY at the end of the post.
Hello to RT readers everywhere! I’ve been a fan of RT BOOK REVIEWS since it was first published, and it’s always a thrill to be invited to share what is new in my small corner of the romance world. This blog actually brings me full circle.
"Never Been To Me is by turns gut wrenching and heart warming”, says RT Reviewer Kate Girard. This latest contemporary romance from author GiGi Gunn follows heroine Persi as she transitions from “the other woman” to someone’s only woman. It's unusual to write about cheaters as the heroes and heroines of a romance novel, so we went right to the author to learn why she took on this challenge and get the heroine's take on the five signs a man is wrong (or right) for you. And don’t miss the excerpt and *Web Exclusive Review* of Never Been To Me at the end of this post.