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Writing a Romance Novel for Dummies

3.88  ·  Rating Details  ·  130 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
In love with romance novels? You're not alone! Romance is today's most popular fiction genre, accounting for more than half of all mass market fiction sold. If you're looking to make a serious effort at writing a romance and getting it published in today's multifaceted markets, you need to learn as much as you can about this highly successful field--especially how to creat ...more
Paperback, 360 pages
Published May 7th 2004 by Wiley Publishing
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Erin Klitzke
May 06, 2012 Erin Klitzke rated it did not like it
It's unfortunate that this book hasn't been updated in the past eight years. I assumed after thumbing through it in the bookstore that it would still be useful for my purposes, but shame on me for not thumbing through enough! The entire back third of the book is painfully outdated given how quickly the publishing industry has been changing over the past few years. Anyone who reads this book should be aware that a great deal of the book is out of date--styles, tastes, and the like have changed. S ...more
Lisa Annesley
Jul 21, 2012 Lisa Annesley rated it really liked it
Shelves: reference
You're not a dummie.

But perhaps you're an aspiring romance author and you're just dipping your toes into the waters of romance novel writing. Or maybe you've got a few manuscripts written and you're looking for some advice to improve your writing.

This book is for you.

Leslie Wainger took everything she learned as a romance editor for Harlequin/Silhouette/MIRA and turned it into a guide for romance novel writers. The beauty of Writing a Romance Novel for Dummies is that it is specific to romance n
Sep 17, 2014 Silvia rated it really liked it
Shelves: on-writing
I have always loved writing stories but it got lost along the way. Then I discovered fanfiction (yes, and I am not ashamed of it) and thought this was a good way to worm myself back into a hobby that I though I had lost forever. Although I think I'm an OK enough writer for the internet platform I'm using, there's always things to learn and to improve and as we all know, practice makes perfect. I stumbled across this book through browsing and bought it without thinking twice.
What a good idea! It'
This is awkwardly outdated and it didn't, at all, sit well with me that the author came over as shaming authors in specific genres and sub-genres of romance.

No idea how old she is, but my grandmother used to be less stuffy, conventional and right-wing. Given that she is an editor of a major publisher you needn't wonder why a lot of romances out of these houses are so horrid.

Take this for instance:
So what’s the appeal of the tortured hero? Psychologists say that women are nurturers; they like to
Becky Black
Aug 07, 2014 Becky Black rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
A useful reference and a lively and entertaining read too. I'll keep this close to hand for reference.
Addicted to Books
Jul 02, 2016 Addicted to Books rated it liked it
Shelves: own-kindle, nf
Outdated information!!!!!!
Bogna Maslanka
Mar 02, 2014 Bogna Maslanka rated it liked it
It's an alright book, but it is very outdated. Specially when it comes to what a heroine should/shouldn't be and the publishing industry. I found it gross how stereotypical and sexist the "rules" for female characters were.

I still give the book three stars because it does have some very basic romance writing advice for someone who is just starting out.
Aug 22, 2015 Deborah rated it really liked it
I gave this book four stars because I read it in 2015. If it was up to date, this would probably be higher. There was a reference to backing work up on a floppy disc, and how to submit manuscripts was probably out of date. However, the information on conflicts, creating characters and lists of what to avoid were still useful.
Apr 03, 2016 GCB-LovesGoodBooks rated it really liked it
I found it interesting though dated. But some basics are worth knowing like setting and plot as wel as setting up conflict - emotional versus intellectual. It gave me some insight into the novels that I read. I think it might help me be a better reviewer... or not.
Sep 13, 2014 Lexington rated it liked it
This book won't teach you how to write a romance novel, but it will teach you what to write and who the audience is as well as what they expect. Honestly, there isn't much information in this that can't be found online. Unless you have absolutely no idea what you're doing, it won't be of much help to you.
Leanne Bristow
Nov 21, 2015 Leanne Bristow rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great resource for writers.

I learn something new every time I read it and I refer to it on a weekly basis. A must have for all new writers.
May 23, 2012 Tasneem rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writing
This is a fabulously helpful book that shows you the practicalities of writing romance. I had dipped into this book time and time again when struggling to write my work. It is a very useful tool and I can't recommend it enough. The guidelines are simple to understand and the tips so clearly laid out that it is impossible to not get a full and complete understanding of the key requirements.
Jul 02, 2008 Jen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writing
I've been working on romance novels off and on since I was a teenager. I picked this book up three or four years ago, and it has a permanent place on my bookshelf as a reference manual. While I agree that it does discuss the process of sitting down to actually write the novel more than the actual nitty details of writing, it does enable you to think about new ways of writing your novel.
Mar 22, 2008 Leonard rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: anyone starting out in writing and wants to actively publish something.
Shelves: lost-interest
This is interesting book if you're starting out in writing. It appears to give all the particulars when creating a Romantic Novel, but it feels like it concentrates on the process of getting the book out there, instead of what's being put into the book. It's very informative, but I had more fun with "On Romance Writing" by Leigh Michaels.
Jan 23, 2010 Michael rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing, 2009
No, I'm not planning on writing a Harlequin. It was written by an/the executive editor at Harlequin Books. I wanted to see the break down and what drove the plot in a romance novel. Thought it would help me with another project I'm working on. It definitely did.
Jo Anne
Sep 28, 2008 Jo Anne rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: aspiring writers
Recommended to Jo Anne by: n/a
This book gives you and easy and understandable guide to writing your movel. It teaches you how to plot, POV,write loves scene, which is really important if you are writing a romance.
I recommend this book to aspiring writers.
Amber LaShell
Jul 20, 2011 Amber LaShell rated it it was amazing
To see my full review, check out my examiner article.
Christine (AR)
May 25, 2008 Christine (AR) rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing, romance
I keep going back to this one. Very basic in some respects, but that just makes it a good reference. The relationship building section is outstanding.
Xondra Day
Mar 28, 2013 Xondra Day rated it liked it
Useful, but geared towards those wanting to break into the category romance business.
Jan 18, 2010 Theresa rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing-books
The sections dealing with romantic characters are particularly useful.
Jul 08, 2008 Mary rated it it was amazing
I hope to one day thank the author in an acceptance speech!!
Lesley Ann
Oct 21, 2011 Lesley Ann rated it really liked it
Shelves: craft
A good introductory text for beginner writers.
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