Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Morning After

There's nothing quite like the awkward silence, the bashful glances and tender touches. Don't forget the bad breath, lack of makeup and stale perfume smell.

Ahh, the morning after!

They're one of my favourite scenes to read and write.

There are so many places we can take our characters following the emotion and physical buildup. Whether we have our characters making out, steaming up the mirror in the bathroom or its the hot and sensual love scene - there is always the emotional let down that follows. The uncertainty, self doubts, nervousness and awkwardness all come in to play.

It's at this moment that I find real life comes into play. This is where we take our experiences, our memories and use them to their advantage. Do you remember what happened after your first kiss? Or the first time you woke up and realized that it wasn't all a dream - there was someone sharing your bed and they were breathing on you?

There's also the tiny flare of hope that comes along with the morning after. The flashes of a future you've been dreaming about, hoping for, wishing for. The whisper of longing for what could be.

What is it about the morning after that you love?

(A word of personal note - today is my Morning After from The Master's release! Yes - it's now Available!!!)


Visit my Author Page: Anya Winter
The Master - now available!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Near Misses

Let's face it, we all enjoy reading about a good snogging every now and again...maybe even like it when things get steamier. That's what romance is about right? The hugs, touches, kisses, intimacy.

But, in fiction, none of that is as much fun if the "near misses" aren't there. You know, those scenes where the hero and heroine are just about to break and give in to the attraction one--if not both of them--has been trying to deny.

In that moment, they want it to happen. We want it to happen. Everyone wants it to happen. doesn't happen.

Something stops them before they're able to be fully swept away. Whether it's a pair of teenagers interrupted mid-makeout by a parent, or an adult couple sidetracked by some other force of life, they aren't allowed to cross the finish line.


It's this dissruption--this sense of "Damn it! What would have happened if the phone hadn't rang just then?!?"--that drives us insane as readers and makes us root for the couple to get together even more.

So while all the hand holding and stares of longing are great, and we're happy for the tremendous sex once the couple gets together, it's the near misses that truly set the scene.

The better the near misses and frustration we feel as a result, the better the satisfaction when our heroes finally break through all their barriers. Make sure you don't skimp on this part while you're writing your story...the potential payoff is too great.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Head-Butting Romantic Conflicts

According to Writing a Romance Novel for Dummies, by Leslie Waigner, there are three common issues facing the hero and heroine:
Trust: Need I say more?
Control: Who needs the guy to control you—and ultimately your heart—when your skills and confidence make you a kickass [fill in the blank]?
Self-image: How could he possibly be interested in me when XX is much prettier, smarter, skinnier (the list goes on)?
The benefit of using an issue such as above is that it keeps your hero and heroine together plot wise, but keeps them apart emotionally. This helps drives the conflicts (both internal and external) while allowing the happy couple to eventually fall in love.
Does anyone have any other issues to add to the list?

Don't forget about our contest going on for SoloPlay right now. Any comment left between now and Friday will be entered to win Miranda Baker's new ebook. Of course, if you'd rather not win it - just make sure you put that in your comments too :)

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Come Play with SoloPlay & Win

Want to win a copy of SoloPlay by Miranda Baker? Sure you do! I promise, you won't regret it. Keep reading to find out how.

I don't think it's a secret anymore. I have a bit of a crush on Miranda Baker. She's soft, sensual, erotic and knows how to bake. Just the baking alone is what sold me on her.  But all that aside - this woman knows how to write. When I first read Bottoms Up, I knew I had an addiction. SoloPlay is just as good.

She had me right at the beginning. A woman (librarian) having lacklustre sex (yes, that's how it opens). We've all been there, done that and have all tried to burn the bra with it - right? The man blames her - of course...and then it hits you. You're hooked. You meet Crystal who blows your mind away and find yourself in a place where you ignore your husband, children and supper that is burning in the oven. The only thing that matters is that you find yourself wet and wanting. Wanting the kids to either be invited to a sleepover and go play over at someone's house so you can have time alone with your 'other' to try some of these moves Miranda mentions in SoloPlay.

Whether you are someone who likes to use toys or not, it won't matter. You'll either find yourself wishing you had some or googling the nearest toy store to buy some. This story is full of erotic whispers and longing. But more than that - it's a story that every single woman can see herself in - at one time or another. Doubt. Self exploration. Passion. Love. This has a HEA that will bring a smile to your face and a sigh to your heart.

You'll love it.

Wanna own it? You can. Here's how. You must be a follower and leave a comment. Simple as that. No hoops to jump through. Oh wait - it would be nice if you would share your favourite chocolate dessert. For my benefit - selfish I know ;)  I'll leave it up until Friday at midnight.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Get Them While They’re Hot!

Are you one of the lucky writers attending the RWA national conference in NYC next month? If not, you can still benefit from some awesome handouts now available online. One of my favorites is Character Mining. Judging from the handout, I can’t wait to attend the workshop.
Is anyone else going to be there?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

What POV is it?

Have you ever read a scene where you were confused about whose POV you were in?
What about writing it? Especially during those "oh so naughty" body action scenes. Have you ever written the scene and realized that the male POV was perhaps too feminine or that the girl POV wasn't feminine enough?
I found a fun blog with a tool called the Gender Genie. Plug in a paragraph and it'll tell you whether the POV is male or female.
Try it! Let me know how it worked for you.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Page Turners in Romance

Why do readers of romance keeping turning the page instead of rushing off to clean the toilet? (I mean, other than the obvious reason) It’s because they want to know what happens between the hero and heroine.
But it’s not enough to give the two characters a happily-ever-after from page one (save that for the ending). You need to create tension and conflict between them, which is maintained throughout the story.
According to Leslie Waigner (Writing a Romance Novel for Dummies) this can be achieved by creating an emotional conflict (one that grows from the heart) between the two characters that has nothing to with the plot. After that, you can throw all kinds of complications at them.
However, don’t confuse emotional conflict with intellectual conflict. Intellectual conflict comes from the head, such as opinions.
Remember, at the end of the day, the reader cares more about what’s in the hero’s and heroine’s hearts than what’s in their heads. (Okay, you know what I mean.)

Is there anything in a romance that keeps you from turning the page?