Love, Romance, and All That Gooey Stuff - Happy Valentine's Day
Happy Valentine’s Day! Ain’t love grand? I’ve been married for almost 36 years. In today’s world where 50% of marriages end in divorce that’s saying something. The icing on the heart-shaped cake is that my hubby supports my writing in every which way and twice on Sunday. May Cupid shoot a loving, romantic, supportive arrow in your direction today too and may you give or receive lots of chocolate and candy hearts. Oh, and maybe some flowers and jewelry.
So, let’s get on with it my loves. There’s no better day than today to discuss the fiction romance genre. The primary focus of a romance novel is centered on the development of a romantic relationship between two people, most commonly a hero and heroine. It must also have a happily ever after, ending.
The romance genre has two types of formats:
Category Romance is part of a series. Think Harlequin or Avon. Think similar setting, theme, and characters that may be shared from book to book. Think release dates with regular intervals of books that are short, no more than 200 pages or approximately 55,000 words.
Single-Title Romance is a book that is not necessarily part of a specific line of books but can be connected to other books from a series by the same author. Sometimes single-titled romance novels are stand-alones of about 350-400 pages, or approximately 100,000-110,000 words.
There are several important elements that all romance novels include:
Usually told from the woman’s point of view
Conflict leading up to the relationship or heartbreak within the relationship is present and must be overcome
The story is all about the romance, so external matters have less involvement
It speaks of an optimism of love that the reader feels maybe they can attain too
A happily ever after ending
Paranormal – combines a love story with supernatural elements
Contemporary – set in the time when they are written
Historical – the plot takes place in a setting located in the past
Fantasy – a combo of reality and fantasy
Young Adult – young people are the focus
Erotic – contain strong sexual content
Time-Travel – the heroine is usually from the present and travels into the past to meet the hero
Science Fiction – a blend of romance and science fiction, usually in an alternate world
Inspirational – Christian themes with the development of a romantic relationship
Multi-Cultural – typically features a hero and/or heroine who are in an interracial relationship