Thursday, October 1, 2015

Recipe for Romance

This is a recycled post I wrote for Literary Musings during my Hurricane of the Heart July - August Bewitching blog tour. Enjoy!

So you want to be a romance writer? Well here is a recipe you can use:
Serving size: 1 full length romance novel


1 really intriguing storyline
2 cups well developed lovable characters
5 tablespoons of memorable supporting characters
½ cup of conflict
1/2 cup sexual/emotional tension
Heat (variable depending on targeted readership)
1 emotional conflict resolution
A dash of comedy
Love making (optional)

Before we begin this recipe you need to prep. Here’s how you prep.
1.    Know what romance is
Have you ever read a book that’s labeled romance and found that there is everything in the book except romance? The genre romance can run the gamut. There are a million and one subgenres of romance including historical, paranormal, mystery, suspense, erotica, you name it. The heat level also covers a wide range from simple hand holding to explicit sex. So what really is romance?
Romance is a story about the love and eventual relationship between two people that is driven by the emotions with a hopeful ending.
So before you begin to write romance, make sure you know what kind of romance you want to write, the heat level and your targeted readership.

2.    Know your characters
Well developed lovable characters are essential for writing romance. Readers like to fall in love with the characters themselves. An interesting way to create multidimensional characters is by doing an interview with the main characters. It helps you to know how they think, what they would and would not do, and how they would react to different scenarios.

3.    Know your storyline
Whether or not you are using an outline know where you story is going. You must know how it begins, how the couple meets, and what would happen in the end. The middle is a determined by your imagination.

4.    Know how to create conflict.
Conflict can be either internal or external. It could be a residual scars from past relationships. It could be the person’s own insecurity or dislike for the other person. It could also be caused by other people, circumstances, or decisions that have to be made. The greater the conflict, the more interesting the resolution.

Now that you’re all prepped we can begin making that spicy romance.

To the intriguing storyline add two lovable characters. The characters should be strong, memorable and even if they are the most villainous characters, have something that readers could identify with and like. We want characters that readers will be rooting to get together.

Add a dash of conflict at the beginning of the recipe. We’ll add the rest later. Stir in a few memorable supporting characters or sidekicks.  Beat for a few minutes and add emotional/sexual tension drop-wise allowing it to build up to a fever pitch. Stir in comedy so that it blends with everything else. When mixture is nice and smooth, place it on the fire and slowly add heat. The heat depends on the targeted audience so be careful.  Let it simmer so readers can get a whiff of the HEA. Love making is optional depending on subgenre and heat level, but it should be driven by emotion. Use your discretion when adding this. As it comes to a boil add the rest of the conflict and turn up the heat. Keep stirring. When it begins to bubble out of the pot add the conflict resolution. Stir to make everything smooth.

Taste the pot (proof read) to make sure you have a lovely flavor and add or remove to improve the taste (editing). Now you have yourself an intriguing romance novel.


S Connell Vondrak said...

Your recipe is right on target.

Liane Spicer said...

Yes! Great recipe.