Love is in the Air! Tips on Writing a Successful Romance Novel

If you’ve ever considered writing a romance novel . . . what are you waiting for?

Romance is a best-selling genre with a built-in audience addicted to the drama, intrigue, and complex characters created specifically for them. As a result, Danielle Steel is one of the world’s highest-paid authors, with Nicholas Sparks as a close second.

Maybe it’s time to add your name to that list . . .

But romance writing, unlike many other genres, usually follows a pretty specific set of rules; some methods make some authors more successful than others. Here are some tips to consider as you embark on your career as a novelist:


As with any genre, you must read anything you can get your hands on, but with romance, it’s even more crucial. As you examine more books by different authors, you might see patterns that work for you and some that don’t. By reading the works of others, you’ll get a better idea of your own voice, and because romance is so personal, the result will be a book that will engage your reader and leave them begging you for more. And if you genuinely don’t love what you’re reading, then romance might not be the genre for you. Romance readers can tell when an author is not entirely invested.


As with most fiction, there needs to be a conflict or problem that your characters must overcome, but with romance, you really need to think about what the issue will be because this will be the central theme of your book. It needs to be believable to the reader and something that falls somewhere in the middle of complex and simple: it can’t be a simple misunderstanding that could be resolved in a short conversation, but on the other hand, it can’t be so complicated that it will get in the way of the couple’s happy ending (which is an essential facet of romance writing).


Of course, your book will have secondary characters, but be careful how much you develop them. With romance writing, the focus should remain on the hero or, in most cases, the heroine. Most romance novels are told in the first person so that the reader will be genuinely invested in their story. Developing this point of view allows the reader to feel the emotional response you’re looking for when it comes to romance.


Yes, romance novels are all similar in some ways (for example, they generally all end with a happy couple). And while you should follow the general guidelines, make sure that your book is . . . well . . . YOU. While there might be comparable conflicts throughout many romance novels, you need to include your own twists and turns along the way that the reader doesn’t see coming. Be daring. This will keep the reader engaged and your novel moving at the perfect pace.


While romance always includes a physical relationship, pay attention to how this plays out in your book. You can include knee-weakening physical scenes, but an emotional connection between your characters is a must. This should be carefully developed, adding to the reader’s emotional experience and response to your book.

So, off you go! It’s time for you to face that blinking cursor on your screen and start writing the romance novel you know you have inside of you. And if you’re not ready to start, maybe it’s time to settle on the couch with a novel that might spark your own ideas.

If you would like to talk to an Outskirts Press Publishing Consultant about publishing your romance novel or another book, call us at 1-888-672-6657 or visit our website at to chat with a Publishing Consultant.

We can’t wait to publish your work!