The Dos and Don'ts of Writing Love Letters—from Actual Romance Authors

Posted by Hayley on November 16, 2018
If writing love letters was easy, everyone would do it. Instead, we awkward romantics let our texts and tweets do the work, leaving the handwritten notes to more enlightened lovers. But no more! Here to the rescue: Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward. The bestselling writer duo celebrated the release of their latest contemporary romance, Hate Notes, by sharing their professional tips on the subject.

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A love letter is the perfect gift.

We’ve all struggled with what to get someone we care about. A blender? Too impersonal. That poster she loved? It'll look cheap. But a romantic love letter is always just right. And unlike a purse or a sweater, it never goes out of style or wears out. The receiver can cherish it forever.

In books, love letters are special gifts because a character can convey what he or she may not be able to articulate in person. A letter is an opportunity to open your heart without having to face the immediate consequences of a reaction. It takes away a certain level of vulnerability, acting as an emotional shield, making it easier for the person to open up and express their true feelings.

Want to learn how to craft your own passionate love letters? Here are our tips.


  • Be honest. This is your opportunity to say everything you need to say exactly how you want to say it.
  • Take your time. Once something is written down and sent, you can’t take it back.
  • Say why you’re writing the letter. We ladies love when the answer is “no reason at all,” but there always can be a reason—maybe you can’t stop thinking of her or you just miss her. Let her know!
  • Be romantic. You might not be the most romantic person normally, but a love letter is a great place to let your inner Cyrano de Bergerac out.
  • Get some stationery. While your words are the most important thing, don’t let a messy piece of ripped-out notebook paper distract from what you're trying to say.


  • "Dear Jane" it. Open with something specific. Think nicknames and extra-special romantic expressions.
  • Type it. Nothing reads as intimate as a handwritten letter.
  • Ruin it with bad grammar and typos. Double-check your letter to show you took your time.
  • Hold back. Go for it! Say all the things you have in your heart, even if it makes you nervous.
  • Use clichés. That’s too easy. She’s unique—your letter should be, too!

Books that get love letters right:
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Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward's Hate Notes is now available. Add it to your Want to Read shelf here.

Comments Showing 1-47 of 47 (47 new)

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message 1: by Zachary (new)

Zachary This is cute

message 2: by Gracies Mum (new)

Gracies Mum Hate Notes was a beautiful story that I could have gone on reading forever. Simply beautiful. Thank you P & V.

message 3: by Zan (new)

Zan I LOVED IT. LOVED IT. LOVED IT. U made me laugh,chuckle, smile and cry all through the beautiful journey of HATE NOTES. Just couldn't keep it down until finished ,which btw took me only 2 days for that. U R THE BEST......

message 4: by Cyndi (new)

Cyndi I loved this book so much!

message 5: by Valeen (new)

Valeen Robertson (Live Thru Books Blog) Beautiful! Just like Hate Notes.

message 6: by Socorro (new)

Socorro Loved it big time!

message 7: by Marilyn (new)

Marilyn Loved it!! ❤️

message 8: by Cathy (new)

Cathy They are two of my favorite characters. I absolutely loved their bantering!❤️

message 9: by Bianca (new)

Bianca i loove it ❤️

message 10: by Amanda (new)

Amanda This book was yet another amazing coming together of these talented authors. Loved the book!

message 11: by Fiona (new)

Fiona Fog A beautiful read and that ending made me cry. Thank you ladies for a fantastic story.

message 12: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Such an amazing book. My brother has MS so this book is close to my heart.

message 13: by S (new)

S Loved it from the banter to the emotions, it was perfection ❤️❤️This book was phenomenal and kudos to the two genius authors . A huge fan of both Vi and Penelope

message 14: by Judy (new)

Judy Lewis At almost 70 years young, I think my generation is a little more in tune with the value of a handwritten note and understand the power it can wield in any relationship, whether it's a thank for your gift, thank you for your thoughtfulness, thank you for being my friend, a simple thank you for loving me, or a beautiful, heartfelt confession of love. After reading the blurb, I was intrigued and immediately fell in love with the premise for this story. My expectations were high but Keeland and Ward did not disappoint. They knocked it out of the park with Hate Notes! I loved Reed and Charlotte and they were so perfect for each other, even though it took them both a while to realize it. Thank you so much Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward for reminding our fast-lane, instant gratification, tech-savvy generation to put down their electronic devices and give a true gift from the heart. Love these tips for note writing!

message 15: by Joelle (new)

Joelle Love it

message 16: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Pennington Loved Hate Notes!!!
And OMG best epilogue ever!!!

message 17: by Ney (new)

Ney Awww love this 😍❣💌

message 18: by Sanna (new)

Sanna Bengtsson This is so cute

SeekingAlpha.Obonty Sanna wrote: "This is so cute"

Gracies Mum wrote: "Hate Notes was a beautiful story that I could have gone on reading forever. Simply beautiful. Thank you P & V."

message 20: by Morgana (new)

Morgana I think that for this Christmas I will write letters to my loved ones and hang them on the Christmas tree for them to read. Maybe this way we will start a new Christmas tradition.

I just want to add how much I enjoyed Hate Notes, thank you Vi and Penelope for this!

message 21: by Vicky (new)

Vicky So beautiful ♥️

message 22: by Eliza (new)

Eliza I loooovvvveeee Hate Notes...that's why i rate it with 5*....

message 23: by Ruth (new)

Ruth McDonnell Loved this book! But then again I love everything they write!❤️❤️❤️

message 24: by Hazel (new)

Hazel Loved this book so much 💞

message 25: by Molly (new)

Molly I Love It 😍

message 26: by Regina (new)

Regina Frame Loved it!

message 27: by Brittney (new)

Brittney I loved this book

message 28: by Lei (new)

Lei Very Helpful. Loved. Loved. Super Loved it!

message 29: by Aneesah (new)

Aneesah If someone placed "Dear Aaron" on a list of books that "got love letters right", we must have read two different books. I was NOT a fan. Hate Notes was wonderful though!

message 30: by Tabitha (new)

Tabitha Dumm I loved Hate Notes.

message 31: by JBird831 (new)

JBird831 Loved Hate Notes!

message 32: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Head over heels in LOVE with this book. There is no way after reading it you won't feel warm and be grateful for all the good things life gifts us with.

message 33: by Amneris (new)

Amneris Cesare Started reading yesterday! Yay!

message 34: by Sheila (new)

Sheila thanks!

message 35: by Krista (new)

Krista Webster Absolutely loved this book.

message 36: by Yolanda (new)

Yolanda Ruiz-Fabian It was an awesomely good read!

message 37: by Carrie (new)

Carrie  Turner I loved this book.

message 38: by Chloe (new)

Chloe Lucca Love it. Thank you ❤❤

message 39: by Mal (new)

Mal This duo is the best❤

message 40: by Tutors (new)

Tutors Help It's a lovely thing I know how to write professional or legal through tutors help online but love letter is difficult to write you can explain your emotion and love through words is not an easy task.

message 41: by Mariana (new)

Mariana So awesome! I loved it 💜

message 42: by Audra (new)

Audra Ennis Love this book! Thank you for taking the time to give hints like these! I appreciate you both! 😍

Margaret McGovern Sounds accurate & awesome for love letters.

message 44: by Karima (new)

Karima Love it💕💕

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message 46: by John (new)

John Wick Thank you for using the time to give this information. I like

message 47: by John (new)

John Wick Wow. What a great discussion. Thank for sharing.
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