Category: romance novels

Let’s Talk about Plot

We wanted to talk a little about plot and found this useful blog post from one of our past contributors. Here are some basics… What is a plot? Plot in its most basic form is a series of linked events that take place. It is the stuff that stories are made of.  Without it your…

Read More »


5 Reasons Why You Need a Setting

by Patience Bloom When you are writing a romance, it can be easy to forget about setting. Your protagonists are wrapped up in a love cocoon, grappling with their conflicts. Classic romance hooks abound with a baby, maybe a cowboy, a wedding, a stuck-in-an-elevator night of passion, a pregnancy, a misunderstanding, and at the end,…

Read More »


Book Recommendations for Writing

We editors have done much research on writing and have come up with this excellent list of craft related books for you. Don’t be intimidated! These books will inspire you to organize, plot, re-plot, dream, and get yourself in that chair to write. So without further ado… Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg This…

Read More »


10 Ways To Make Your Submission Stand Out

Discovering new writing talent is the one of the most exciting things we get to do as editors. But how can you help yourself catch an editor’s eye? Read on for our top tips… Do your series research! You can pitch an editor a great idea, but if it’s not something we can actually acquire,…

Read More »


Getting the Call: Meet Julie Danvers!

Ever since I was young, I’ve wanted to be a writer. I grew up in a rural area, and books provided the adventures I craved. I dreamed of writing the kinds of books I loved to read: sprawling fantasy novels, suspenseful thrillers, and mysteries with irresistible twists. Romance didn’t exactly make the list. I liked…

Read More »


Dear Editor, I don’t know where to start my romance novel!

Every now and then, we like to revisit some of our classic blog posts, which are still helpful (we hope). From our Advice from the Archives… Dear Editor, I don’t know where to start my romance novel! Help! Leah Dear Leah, Never fear! You’re not alone in this quandary. Sometimes, a writer will pen several…

Read More »


10 Romance Clichés: Love ‘Em or Leave ‘Em?

by Patience Bloom, adapted from her blog Every genre has its clichés and I sort of love them because they can be like chicken soup or The Brady Bunch, i.e. comforting old friends. At the same time, when you’re a voracious reader, these clichés get tired and seem like a quick exit. Here are some offenses…

Read More »


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,…

Read More »


Five Tips to Preserve that Post-Workshop and Conference Enthusiasm

by Patience Bloom You’ve just returned from your first (or eighteenth) Romance Writers of America conference–or meeting of your local romance chapter. You’re on that high after spending time with writer-friends, and the lessons you learned were life-changing. After unpacking your clothes, swag, and free books, you throw yourself on the couch for a restful…

Read More »


10 Tips for Writing the Perfect Cinderella Story

We’ve all known and adored the classic Cinderella tale from the moment we started to read (or listen to bedtime stories!) It’s the ultimate escapist fantasy and one we challenge you not to get caught up in! If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at creating your own, read on for my top 10 tips to…

Read More »