Category: Writing Tips

#WritingChallenge: LISTEN to create stronger dialogue

By Deirdre Strong dialogue will draw readers into your book and catch an editor’s ear. There are a few things that make your dialogue stand out in the slush pile and feel fresh and contemporary: The dialogue sounds natural: The speech isn’t overly formal, and doesn’t read like a Wikipedia entry explaining the characters’ feelings.…

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Top Tips for Writing a Forced Proximity Romance

By Kayla King, Editorial Assistant for Harlequin Intrigue Just like enemies-to-lovers, I feel like I can’t get enough of this trope!  It’s the perfect opportunity for lots of conflict and tension.  See my top five tips below to spice things up during your next writing session. 1. Remember that it’s all about trust.  A huge point of…

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Top 10 Reasons to Write a (Non-Billionaire) City Romance

By Megan Broderick, editorial assistant to Harlequin Special Edition and Harlequin Romantic Suspense As the editorial assistant for Special Edition, I see a lot of amazing small town romances chock full of quirky characters, cute bakeries and, of course, eligible bachelors. But every once in a while, a girl gets a hankering for something a…

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Advice from the Archives: Second Book-itis: 5 Tips for Writing Your Second Book

Second book-itis: a painful and demoralizing syndrome common among authors who wish to produce a second book after their first success. Here’s how it works: After three years of writing, polishing and shopping around your prize manuscript, you finally get “the call” from an editor wanting to publish your book. Break out the Champagne, baby! …

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Dear Editor, Is it bad that my characters love to fight?

Dear Editor, My characters love to fight. From the first page, they just have this witty repartee that turns into romance. My critique partner thinks this bickering is a little unbelievable and I don’t agree. Some people just fight, right? –Vera Vera, I agree with both you and your critique partner. There’s nothing wrong with a little bickering in…

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Advice from the Archives: What Is a Satisfying Ending?

So we’ve shown you how to start and how to tackle writing your first chapter, but here’s the big question that we’re sure is on everyone’s lips: How do you write a powerful ending that stays with your readers for a long time? Well, never fear, here are our few sneaky tips to achieving those happily-ever-afters…

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Top 10 Reasons to Feature Pets in Romance

by Carly Silver, Assistant Editor for Harlequin Romantic Suspense If you know me, you know I love pets. Dogs are (hu)man’s best friend; cats are loyal, if occasionally incomprehensible, companions; and who doesn’t love an unusual tale of a rabbit becoming a human’s BFF? Pets make great additions to romance novels, as well – but…

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Advice from the Archives: How to Write a Great First Chapter

Can you guess the opening line? “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” “Scarlett O’Hara was not beautiful, but men seldom realized it when caught by her charm…” “New Year’s Resolutions           I Will Not…” There’s no better way to stand out from the crowd and catch an…

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#AdviceSwap: How do you handle a rejection letter?

 “Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th.” – Julie Andrews Happy New Year! Do you make New Year’s resolutions? Opinions differ on whether making resolutions for the year really works, or what the best way is to  achieve your goals. But the truth is there’s no one best way for everyone. This week…

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