Guest Post: Sherri Goodman

prince-charmingPlease welcome Sherri Goodman to my blog today!

As a lover of the erotic literature and the romance genre, you’ve probably spent many moments fantasizing about the characters and steamy scenarios you encounter in your reading. In these fantasies, you may have deviated from the script a bit and implored the help of your own imagination. Why not take all that creativity and enthusiasm for romance to the next level and create your own erotic piece? While it may seem daunting, the process of writing an erotic or romance novel is no different from the methods used to produce a work of fiction or a biography and the benefits can be just as rewarding.

Although the basic writing procedures provided by PBS are the same for most types of literature, there are a few slight differences when it comes to romance—the original narratives and themes, for example—that make the process of creating erotic literature unique. Even with the number of writers and novels in the genre, there is still some uncharted romantic territory that has yet to be explored. So whether you want to write something with a supernatural theme or prefer to develop your own sensual motif, you can easily concoct an authentic erotic work.

Much like any other type of writing, the practices used to produce romantic literature takes time, research, and the development of ideas. Because this genre has such a tight-knit, discriminating group of readers and fans, there are certain expectations that you must meet in order for your book to be a success with enthusiasts of erotica. Essentials like creating a sympathetic protagonist and a strong, charming, and attractive love interest; building emotional and romantic tension; and crafting an intriguing, yet realistic plot and suitable conclusion.

When it comes to your characters, ideally you want all your readers to believe that they could fall in love with one of them. Unfortunately, you can’t please everyone. As Adam and Eve explained in a blog post, everyone has different characteristics that make up their “Prince Charming Fantasy.” The Prince Charming Fantasy includes being swept off your feet by the person who’s perfect for you in each and every way imaginable. Granted, it’s impossible to create someone everyone loves, but there are some classic characteristics they mention for males that will certainly give your characters a boost. Among them, of course, is the classic look of tall, dark, and handsome. In addition, they mention other highly desirable male characteristics including strength and financial stability.

While these are great ways to appeal to a mass audience, what’s even more important is that you make the characters a perfect match for one another (if that’s the direction you choose to take). One man certainly isn’t going to be considered flawless by every woman in the world, but you can definitely make him seem so for the character that you create.

Once you properly nail down your characters and plot lines, you can move on to other significant writing techniques, including effective pacing, adequately seizing the right emotions and actions of the characters, and applying conflict and a proper resolution—all of which are crucial to crafting a romance novel, according to Writer’s Digest’s tips on writing about conflict. By paying careful attention to how your story unfolds and how your characters develop, your work is more likely to get noticed by editors, publishers, agents, publicists, and, most importantly, readers.

If your end goal is to be published, it’s wise (and worth the investment) to hire professionals to edit, proofread, and fact check your work. If you can’t afford to hire people, brush up on your own editing skills or acquire the necessary editing capabilities and edit your novel yourself. In addition, be mindful of certain stylistic elements such as margins, fonts, and spacing. Not much can be done in terms of the book’s layout and formatting, which is usually dealt with during the production stage; however, you must make sure your work is stylistically symbiotic prior to disseminating your book to potential publishers, per this advice from Harlequin.

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