Wednesday, October 3, 2012

How to Write an Erotic Romance Novella

It takes special skill to write an interesting and page-turning

novella. Add the attempt to try and turn your reader on

within the short pages of a novella, and you have an even

more difficult task.

 Author Virginia Nelson is visiting the Fantasy Floozies today

to give us Five awesome tips in writing an erotic romance

novella! Before we get into her tips, check out her

new novella:

  • First off, thanks for having me on the blog.  That said, my

number one tip for writing an erotic romance novella is…get

very thick skin.  To be any kind of writer, you’ve got to be

 able to roll with all sorts of ups and downs.

From rejection letters to bad reviews, writing in general isn’t

 a great choice for those easily swayed from their dream. 

 This is at least two-fold for the erotic writer since you can

 expect everything from completely inappropriate messages

 on your social networks—“So, you write dirty books?  Bet

 you need lots of help researching for that, right?”—to the

 genteel social snub. 

I prefer the snub, myself, but if you’re going to be offended

 when someone makes comments about the genre, consider

a pen name because someone will.  If you’re like me, you can

 shrug and say, “Yup.  I write dirty books.  I get paid to say


  • My second biggest tip for this would be, cut

all the fluff.  In  any book, you want to make sure every word

counts, every  scene moves the plot forward, and no excess is

left on it before you’re done.

There are things you need to know about your characters

 and their motivations that the reader doesn’t really need to

 know.  You needed to know—to get in their head—but the

 reader would rather just read the story. In a novella, words

 are even more valuable.  If you can cut a scene out of your

 story and the story still flows beautifully, chances are very

 good you don’t need it at all.

  • Third, build a team.  Writing is a solitary sport. 
Like swimming, you’re only really competing against yourself.

Other authors are the only ones who actually understand

what you’re doing. If you manage to build up a strong team

 consisting of crit partners who can keep up with you, who

 aren’t afraid to tell you when you suck…beta readers who

 can just read, and friends and family who are going to be

 your never tiring cheerleaders, you really can’t fail. 

 If everyone believes in you and is waiting for the next

 chapter, it’s a bit easier to force yourself to do the butt in

 chair time that is needed.

  • Fourth, research.  Sure, you’re writing a novel
which will focus on two characters, their love story, and

there’s going to be graphic sex involved.  If you’re writing

BDSM, though, and have only lived a very vanilla sex life, you

 need to dig a little to find out what you’re writing about. 

If you’re writing the story of a cop, but he doesn’t ever go to

 work in your book, perhaps you don’t need to know every

 procedure he would use but you still have to understand the

 things he would know because they’re going to change how

 that character thinks, even if why he thinks that way never

 makes it onto the page.

  • Fifth, never fear writing sex scenes.  They’re just

like any other scene.  You’re showing the reader the

 development of the relationship using their physical

reaction to each other.  There are hundreds of different kinds

 of kisses and countless ways to make love.  Are they angry

 with each other but desperate for each other’s touch?

You’re not just writing sex.  You’re still telling the story and

 letting their bodies show the reader what’s going on.  Get

 past your own personal inhibitions because your character

 might not share them.  Just write…like any other scene, your

 gut will let you know when it’s just right.

If erotic romance is what you want to write, go for it. 

 Novellas are harder than full length novels because you

do have less time to make the reader not only care about

these characters enough to want to see them in bed but to

want them to make it out of the bed into a hea/hfn ending. 

 Harder isn’t always a bad thing.  Sometimes

 harder can be a whole lot more fun.

Happy writing!

About the author:

Virginia Nelson spends her days chasing

 three very active kids around.  When she is

 not doing this, or plotting taking over the

 world, she likes to write, play in the mud,

 drive far too fast and scream at inanimate objects. 

She can often be found listening to music that is far too loud and

typing her next fantastic tale of blood, sex and random acts of


  Romance, in Ms. Nelson’s opinion, is not about riding off into the

 sunset on the back of a horse with the knight in shining armor— it

is about riding the dragon.  If the knight can keep up… well, that is



  1. Kenya, we need to talk at the January residency. I want on this bandwagon!

    1. Shoot! We can talk now! lol! Feel free to contact me on gmail . You can do whatever you want posts, reviews, or oogle hot guys with me!


  2. Love, love, love this advice and "play in the mud, drive far too fast and scream at inanimate objects!"

  3. This is excellent advice and can be applied across the board. Great post, thank you for sharing.

    Oh and "...I get paid to say nipples." <=== LOL!