External conflict on its own rarely stands up as being big enough, emotional enough or important enough. Yes, external factors are important in keeping a story moving, but internal factors are the driving force behind character arc and development, and our pathways to making two-dimensional, imaginary characters human. Real.
But despite all those things people tend to say about romance, reading it has made me a fundamentally better author, both in and out of the genre. These books are often escapist and fantastical, yes, but I have taken many important writing skills and themes away from them. Here are just a few.
Most of my ‘real-world’ characters become amalgams of the people I know, faces and personalities, verbal ticks, cute quirks, a version of a real person that doesn’t exist in the real world.
There is no right or wrong way to go about an interview, but I’m going to share some of my favorite techniques for better understanding, empathizing and, eventually, sharing my characters with the world at large.
When I tell people I write romance novels, I get myriad responses. By far, the ones I find most offensive are those people who ask, Do you ever want to write real books? Yeah. I do want to write real books. That’s why I write romance novels.
Because no matter what we write, we must give some of ourselves over the story, to the writing, to the characters, the sacrifice every writer must make to get it right.
I may have a little insight into how to reconstruct your book while you are standing in it. Here are a few tips and tricks to starting over from the inside out.