Tag Archives: guest post

My Guest Post at FictioneBook.net

Ernie Lindsey might be on to something. He’s started a new blog featuring book reviews for readers and information for readers who’d like to be writers. And he’s building it into an Internet staple.

Check out his corner of the web sometime. With ideas and posts flooding in from a number of guests from all walks and areas of the literary world, there’s sure to be something that catches your attention and answers a nagging question for you.

I am pleased to have been asked to be a regular contributor to the Fiction eBook blog. My first post is up and I invite you to stop by and check it out:

http://www.fictionebook.net/how-do-you-get-published/

The best part about the Internet is connecting so many you’d never otherwise have the opportunity to meet. Quite exciting.

Thanks, Ernie!

Alex.

2 Comments

Filed under For Readers, For Writers, What's New @ R.S.

Plans For 2012 – You’re Invited!

Happy New Year!!

Oh, so much up and coming in 2012…

We’re currently reworking our writer contracting process. E-mailing and mailing signed contract back and forth all over the world just isn’t working for us… With one or two writers, it’s do-able. But getting up into dozens and we’re tripping over paperwork everywhere. This is supposed to all be paperless…

So, we’re writing the content to be able to accept submissions online with an agreement to Terms and Conditions required to enable the submit to work. Oh, so obvious. But once again, the learning curve is flexing its solid steel muscle…

As well, we’ve got plenty of new stories coming up. Very exciting. The quality and variation in plot, setting, and character is so enthralling. I had hoped. But this is exceeding expectations.

I am also very excited to be putting together a presentation by author Reid Lance Rosenthal. I read the first book of his An American Saga, entitled Threads West and can’t wait for the next in the series, Maps of Fate, due out this March/April*. I asked Reid to write a guest post for Romantic Shorts and was stunned by what I got back.

He had asked me what I would like him to write about. I simply left him with, “How about writing romance from a man’s point of view?”

He said, “Sure thing,” and went to work…

The result is not what I had expected to present to Romantic Shorts writers as inspiration and support. Though it certainly qualifies as such.

What he gave me is probably one of the most romantic pieces of writing I’ve ever read. While Reid is explaining the components and styles of romance – what constitutes romance, and how would one go about writing one’s thoughts down, I was reading something every woman wants to hear. Something every man should know. And something that was as moving and emotional as it was educational and supportive. Got to admit, I came away from this ‘lesson in romance writing’ more than a little flushed.

And so I decided to use it as a Romantic Short instead of an HQ post. You’re gonna love it!

Watch for it here and at Romantic Shorts’ Reading Room at the beginning of March/April*, to coincide with the release of Maps of Fate.

And that pretty much takes care of January.

I am so looking forward to the next year of growth and adventure with Romantic Shorts!

Feel free to join us – and bring some friends!

Alex.

(January 13th, 2012 – I’ve just heard from Reid and learned that what I originally thought to be a February 2012 release date for Maps of Fate, has now been pushed back a bit to late March/early April. Ah well. Naught to do but wait. But there’s nothing that says I have to wait patiently…)

2 Comments

Filed under For Readers, For Writers, What's New @ R.S.

What is Romance, anyway?

Brian Knight is the co-owner of Premium Promotional Services through which he helps up and coming authors promote their books. His journey in writing began with the creation of his blog ‘The New Author’ which he has been operating and posting articles on for almost 4 years now. His poetry and short stories have been published in magazines and anthologies. Currently Brian is preparing to write his third novel and has set the goal to join his many friends by becoming a published author.

When I first started my online journey to bring Romantic Shorts to life, one of the first people I met was Brian, through his blog The New Author. Brian’s immediate acceptance and support of my idea has been the most genuine encouragement I’ve received. I was privileged to write a guest post at The New Author, and invited Brian to share some of his experience with us. It is my pleasure to introduce Brian to you…

What Is Romance, Anyway?
By Brian Knight

We walk through the grocery stores and periodically scan the books on the shelves. Many of the books have one thing in common – the covers consist of a man without a shirt on holding a woman in some sort of revealing dress. They are either in a warm embrace or passionate kiss. Is this the sum of Romance? Is this the prime example of the Romance genre? Of course not, this is just a small piece of a very big puzzle.

So, with that said, what is Romance?

Romance is a combination of multiple aspects that combine and generate a particular response from the viewer (if it is a movie) or the reader (if it is a book). That would beg the next big questions; what are these aspects and what is the desired response(s)? Well, I’m glad you asked but before we get to that I want to take a moment and say that this is only my opinion and thoughts. With that out of the way let’s get back to the topic at hand.

Romance should reflect the passion of a couple fresh in a relationship. The aspects of a romantic story replicate the meeting, courtship, and coupling of individuals as they find love with one another. Think back for a moment to your first love. The first time you saw her or him; the first time you talked and touched. Those are the feelings we want in a romance story.

To start things off we want to give the reader that idea of something more; the anticipation needs to start building. We want the reader to think “oh, I think there might be something there.” Once we have established the hook of the budding relationship the next aspect is tension. We need to drag out the actual acknowledgement of the affection felt by the characters. Yes, drive the reader crazy; make them shout at the book and think “come on, can’t you see that he or she is in love with you?” My example of this is ‘Bones’ (the show on Fox). Everyone that watches this show knows for a fact that Booth and Bones love each other but they make excuses why they shouldn’t be together or situations arise that keep them apart. Once you have dragged this out to the point that the reader simply can’t take it anymore, and you have built it up to the highest of high it’s time to deliver. At this point you might be thinking – alright time for the sex scene – but you would be wrong. There is a place for hot and steamy scenes in a romance novel but not yet. True romance is delivered with the first kiss. It is in that kiss that the sparks fly and the hearts of readers melt. Why is that? Well, think back to your first kiss with your significant other. You were nervous but once your lips touched the world fell away, your knees got weak, and all that remained was the kiss.

Some of the greatest romance novels gravitate around the kiss. For example, the kiss in ‘Romeo and Juliet’ completed shifted the flow of the story and confirmed their love. An even more iconic kiss can be found in ‘Gone with the Wind.’ When Rhett kissed Scarlett O’Hara, I’m sure there was a sigh of relief and a smile on the face of every reader. That kiss delivered the full blow of passion that everyone knew existed. Okay, take a moment and let those thoughts and memories dance a little. This is not the last of the romance roller coaster.

A true romance takes another step and that step is dejection, rejection, turmoil, or separation. That’s right, you need drama. Your main characters need to be pulled apart for some reason that deals with your plot. Often this can be done by the introduction of a third character but it can be just about anything that maintains the flow of your story. The next aspect of this is the groveling and pining for each other. The reader needs to see and feel their pain when they are apart. The reader needs to know that the only cure is for them to be together. This, of course, brings us to the finish line.

From now to the end of your novel you complete the plot and resolve the drama. I’m getting ahead of myself here. First, the main characters need to be brought back together. This is the critical time and (depending on your story) this would be the perfect time to insert the hot and steamy scene. This is the time when their passion is overwhelming all thought and reason. The perfect example of this is ‘The Notebook’. I’m sure you’ve seen the movie so let’s have an experiment. Do you think the story would have the same impact if the sex scene was closer to the beginning or after they were separated for so long? These scenes are important but should be handled with care and placed properly. One other note about sex scenes; they don’t have to be so detailed or graphic. Romance resides in the mind of the reader and if you, as the author, take away that ability for the reader to imagine the scene as they see it, then the story will lose part of that impact that we all want. Think of it this way, when you first met your significant other did you picture them naked? Did you fantasize about what it would be like to sleep with them? Do you remember the emotion and energy that produced? This is what we are looking for. In sex scenes we want to give enough to paint the picture but leave enough out so the reader can add the details.

This brings me back to my original question. What is romance? Romance is the combination of drama, tension, innocence, passion, loss and desire that prompts an actual stirring of feelings within us. These elements combine to form those fantasies and memories that we hold on to as we grow old.

I thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts and opinions regarding romance stories. It is my hope that they free your mind to think and develop your own opinions about this complex genre. I also want to thank Alex for the opportunity to appear on Romantic Shorts.

2 Comments

Filed under For Writers, From Writers, Writing and Getting Published 101