Category: Archive

Writing Challenge: The Inciting Moment

by Deirdre McCluskey On Wednesday we published a Harlequin Romance Glossary, with terms editors use when talking about romance novels. (If you haven’t read it yet, check it out.) One definition you might not have heard frequently is the inciting moment: “The scene or situation that throws your hero and heroine together and gets those…

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From Alpha Hero to HEA: A Harlequin Romance Glossary

We all know the romance genre has conventions and guidelines that set it apart from other types of stories. And with those guidelines comes a vocabulary. Here at Romance HQ, we use that vocabulary every day, and sometimes we take it for granted. So we came up with a partial list of definitions so you,…

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Interview with…Cathy McDavid!

We’re pleased to have New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cathy McDavid with us today. She’s here to tell us about her new Sweetheart Ranch mini-series and her transition from writing for Harlequin Western Romance to Harlequin Heartwarming. What is your writing process? Perfect timing for this question. I’m giving a workshop at…

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Advice from the Archives: How to Keep the Romance in Your Sex Scenes

Do you like the steamy bits best? Sex is an important part of relationships and many romance novels. But writing compelling sex scenes that move the plot forward is not as easy as it seems. Sex scenes can include some of the most poignant, meaningful moments in a story, or they can make us shudder…and…

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Advice from the Archives–Why: The Foundation of Your Story

by Katie Gowrie If you’ve thrown yourself into writing, you’ll notice we’ve been posting a lot lately on conflict and characterization. Let’s talk about something that goes hand-in-hand with these two things. And I’m so excited about it, I’m going to caps-lock about it from a virtual mountaintop: IT’S MOTIVATION, FOLKS. Ah, motivation—the foundation of…

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Writing Challenge: Best Buddies

By Deirdre McCluskey For our last writing challenge we talked about frenemies. Another favourite secondary character in romance is the hero’s best friend. And, no, we don’t mean this kind.   The best friend can be a foil for the hero, highlighting his “hero” qualities by showing his somewhat more “regular” friend. Or he can…

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Interview with…Michelle Major!

We’re thrilled to have Harlequin Special Edition author Michelle Major joining us. She’s here to tell us about her new mini-series, Maggie & Griffin, and the experience of writing a trilogy about one couple. Falling for the Wrong Brother, the first book in this series is available now. How did you get into writing? Like…

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What We’re Watching: Mr. Sunshine

By Katie Gowrie If you love sweeping historical dramas as much as I do, you might want to check out Mr. Sunshine. This Korean period piece takes us back to the Joseon dynasty at the turn of the 20th century, as activists fight for Korean independence. It’s worth it for the stunning cinematography and gorgeous…

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What Type of Harlequin Villain Are You?

Take our quiz and see which beloved Harlequin villain you could be. We’ve played up some of our reader’s favorite villainous storylines, and while they’re favorites to us, too, now we’re looking for how they might be twisted and subverted to create something fresh and new! So after you take the quiz, let us know…

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Writing Challenge: Frenemies

by Deirdre McCluskey This week we’ve been talking about secondary characters. One of my favourite character types is the “frenemy”. Sometimes the frenemy is just an enemy that the main character must tolerate politely. But the frenemy role I enjoy is the irritating friend who creates friction in practically every scene. The friction might be…

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