emotional bullets

How do you keep a reader? Keeping your reader interested enough to keep turning the pages of your book is  The key to a satisfying read for your reader. A demonstration of an author’s mastery of the craft of writing. How do you dow these two things? Emotional tension. Emotional tension. Emotional tension. So how do you […]

The Ten stages of Intimacy…creating sexual/emotional tension

Often writers get rejections that say in essence not enough emotional tension.So what is strange creature “Emotional Tension”  It is the No 1 essential ingredient. It’s what hooks your readers…and keeps them turning the page.  In romance…it equates to sexual tension.So how do you create it?The first thing a writer should do, and this applies to […]

Romance…the most maligned genre

Why is romance such a popular genre….this is a question that has occupied many a mind over the centuries. In the Georgian and Victorian eras husbands exhorted wives not to allow their daughters to fill their minds with trashy romance novels. Why? Girls were paraded through the Marriage Marts of the day and marriages were arranged […]

Ten Things I love About Writing.

I got to thinking about  this a couple of weeks ago. What is it about writing that keeps me at my keyboard? I’m not a great lover of lists but I’ll give it a go. Words….I love words. and when I come across a new one its treasure. I’ve worn out one dictionary an Oxford […]

The Gift of Storytelling …the elusive X factor

Is it better to plot a book before you start writing or let it evolve as you go?  The answer is as simple as a writer chooses to make it. Both methods are useful and each has its place. Do I plot…..well sort of.  And if that sounds like a half arse answer…it actually is. Once […]

How To Write Gripping Sex Scenes

Sex scenes are something a lot of writers struggle with, especially novice writers. A lot of this can be traced back to personal hang ups about sex in general.  For older writers who grew up thinking that sex was regarded as “dirty” there was good reason for stumbling over writing such scenes. The days of the romance […]

Tying Up Loose Ends

In every workshop we are bombarded by the the importance of the beginning. It has to be crisp…it has to immediately engage the reader…it has to introduce the characters…set up the  conflict….delineate the plot… And yet we have very few workshops and pointers on how to finish the damn book.It is the part of writing […]

Emotional Punch or Putting Conflict in Every Scene: Molly O’Keefe’s Workshop

Molly O’Keefe’s workshop at our RWNZ conference was brilliant. She gave us her take on creating conflict in every scene.  Something that is particularly relevant to romance writers.  I’m sure every writer has had one of those form rejections …. this submission lacks emotional punch….  And like every writer I’ve scratched my head… what is this elusive thing called emotional […]

Synopsis…. The Bane Of This Writer’s Life and a Eureka Moment

Writing  a synopsis that wows an editor into wanting to read my manuscript is something  guaranteed to have me tearing out clumps of hair….and at times turning down right homicidal. What do you put in and what do you leave out? Five times I’ve sent a synopsis to my critique partner this week and five times it’s […]

Romance Novels in the modern world

The more I see of world news the faster I reach for a good uplifting romance novel. After the recent devastation in Christchurch we are again seeing the appalling destruction wreaked by mother nature in Japan. That this time the devastation is on the other side of the world makes it no less terrifying.  And reinforces how […]

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