Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Book Resarch

I've been doing research for my current work in progress. As I write, when I don't know something or need a fact check, I make a note in the margins and keep typing. with this book, the margin questions started to pop every paragraph. I knew I had to step back and take some time to figure out the details.

I've chosen a part of the world I am not as familiar with: the Middle East. My husband and his family lived there for a number of years and they have been great providing information, books, and personal anecdotes about their experiences. Internet searches have helped a little too.

I've having fun with this book and learning a lot, although the extra research has slowed the pace of my writing a bit. Once I hash out the details, I hope the flow of words will increase.

What are your favorite ways to research? Do you research your book first and then write, or write and research in tandem?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Front Matter

The next step in the publishing process is completing the front matter for my book.

This includes:

- Author biography : short and to the point

- Dear Reader Letter : From the ones that I've read, this is usually 3-4 paragraphs about what the book is about or what inspired the book. Sometimes, the author shares a personal story about writing the book.

- Dedication (optional)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Love Scene

Love scenes in romance novels (or any type of novel really) should be organic to the story. I don't believe in writing love scenes to meet a quota and thankfully, this isn't a problem when writing for Harlequin. Some of the lines have different heat levels, but there's no number of pages or certain number of love scenes required per book.

In my current work in progress, I have two characters who come from very different backgrounds, culturally, socially, and economically. The heroine of my novel is Muslim and she believed until recently that she would have an arranged marriage. For this reason, she isn't experienced with men and generally avoided being alone with them.

When the hero becomes part of her life, because her arranged marriage is no longer an option, she is thinking differently about what she wants for her future and from a relationship with a man.

The dilemma I have is that I am not sure how she would react to a new sexual experience with the hero (at this point, kissing/touching). Would she feel excited? Guilty? Awkward?

And how would the hero react to knowing she is inexperienced with men? Would he be hesitant? Try to resist her?

How do you get into the emotions of a love scene and explore what your characters are feeling?