Lifestyle Learning Direct

Romantic Fiction

Discover the basics of romantic fiction writing by learning about the most popular types of romances, what makes a true romance, and how to find ideas for writing in this genre. You also learn how to analyse your market and introduce passion to your story.

It's vital to understand the fundamentals of romantic fiction writing before beginning your work. In this module you explore aspects such as theme, purpose, conflict and the importance of plotting. A carefully chosen plot is integral to your story, along with creating the framework and developing a touch of mystery within your romance.

No matter how innovative, exciting and sensual your plot may be, its features will be wasted if your characters are boring run-of-the-mill, two-dimensional cardboard cut-outs. Your aim as a writer is to portray your characters so convincingly that the reader sees them as flesh and blood people, and by selecting and combining various traits and physical attributes, you can build lifelike and multi-dimensional people with whom your readers can identify. Together with plotting and dialogue, this is an essential ingredient in the recipe for successful writing.

Think of some unforgettable people you have “met” in books, such as Rhett Butler and Scarlet O’Hara from Gone With the Wind. Why are they so memorable? What made them stand out for you? Was it their strength of character, larger-than-life attributes, heroic qualities or their evilness/goodness? Ideally, readers should come away from a story feeling a sense of identity with the characters, and sympathetic to their needs and motives. In other words, they must care about the characters and what happens to them.

Learn how to move your story along, give information to the reader, reveal more about your characters, and create and enhance sexual tension. The subjects of creating dialogue and setting are examined in detail, along with the many mistakes to avoid when writing romantic fiction.

Sexual tension is not shown by your hero and heroine murmuring endearments: it comes from the pull of sexual attraction, and the push of whatever is keeping them apart. This can be shown through a clever mix of dialogue and narrative. Introduce a vivid writing style by including elements such as smell, sound and touch.

Examples and techniques of different types of endings are outlined and we look at editing your work. Finally, we provide helpful hints on how to prepare your manuscript and contact a publisher.