Wednesday, 30 June 2021



Writing a romance can be difficult and ideas for characters and a romantic plot don’t always spring to mind. So, what can an author do when one book is finished and another is about to begin but ideas are in short supply?

If I’m really stuck and the spontaneous “got to write this” inspiration well is dry, I’ve been known to pin TROPES along with ARCHETYPES on a board and fire off the darts. This gets me started and gives me something to work with.

Once I’ve got, eg. FRIENDS TO LOVERS and THE REBEL or the EXPLORER, etc., I work through the STASIS, TRIGGER, QUEST, etc. until a RESOLUTION is found. Using this method, in no time at all, there’s a rough outline of a synopsis that I can work with. And if the characters happen to take me on a different journey to the one I’ve plotted and planned … I go with it!

So, what TROPES are on offer? The most common tropes used in romance are:


Friends to Lovers

It might be they work together professionally, or they’ve know one another for years and were the typical boy and girl next door – only now attraction kicks in and things are getting hot. As it says on the tin, their relationships changes from friends to lovers.


Stuck Together

Two people are forced into a situation and there’s no getting away from each other. It might be they have to pretend to the outside world that they are a couple, or they could be confined in a location, and a romance evolves between them


Soul Mates

The couple are usually destined to be together although more often than not, during the story, they must be driven apart before they can be reunited.


Forbidden Love

Something or someone, family, religion, beliefs, etc. are keeping the two lovers apart. But their love for one another is so strong, that no matter what their problems are, they find a way to be together.


Fake Relationship

Usually, the couple pretends to be lovers in love. They could be together in a marriage of convenience or they could fake being together to give society a false impression of who they really are. Whatever the reason and whatever the situation, the couple eventually find true love with one another.


Secret Billionaire

A billionaire who has everything, a lavish jet-set lifestyle, answerable to one, and can do what he/she likes whenever he/she likes, is mistaken for an ‘ordinary’ person. Usually, the end result is that the billionaire is loved for their personal qualities/goodness, and not for their possessions.


Love Triangle

Three characters and only two will find true love. It’s an emotional struggle to choose who to love – the handsome inconsiderate CEO or the hard-working, caring nerdy-looking executive – the beauty queen or the wallflower. You’re rooting for all three characters, but someone has to lose.


Enemies to Lovers

They can’t stand one another, but somehow they find themselves in a situation where their hate and dislike for one another turn to respect and love.


These are just a few of the most popular TROPES. There are many more, and I hope you find a combination that inspires you…



Wednesday, 23 June 2021

Heat Levels - How Hot Do You Write?


I write contemporary and historical novels and offer them to my readers as: Tender love stories with a hint of sensual passion . . . and moreMy publisher, when choosing search engine categories for my novels, brackets me in the #erotic romance genre. So, how do you decide where your novel fits into the world of romance and erotica.
The “hotness” or “heat levels” in this post have been split into four groups. I’ve tried to include in each section what I believe are the expected ranges of sexual interaction and heat.
The boundaries between these groupings can be a bit blurred and merge, so please don’t take what is written as absolutely true or without variations. Each publisher's requirements are different and every reader's personal expectations are individual.

As a Rule of Thumb...
Sweet/Clean = the bedroom door is closed
Sensual = a romance for the mainstream reader - use imagination
Erotic = a romance story with varying heat levels of sexual interaction
Erotica = a story heavy on sexual interaction, with a high heat level, and some romance in the storyline
Pornography = the graphic depiction of sexually explicit scenes – end of.

Heat Level 1
Minimal or no physical sexual interaction.
There might only be kissing and touching. Physical romance is usually implied or mentioned in vague general terms.
Often described as “sweet or “clean” romance.
The emphasis is on the romantic emotional journey.

Heat Level 2
Usually found in the mainstream romance section of book stores.
Might contain graphic sex, subtle erotic content, and adult language.
A bit of hanky-panky happens and the physical details are described, but they are not “full-on” or graphically depicted. Most of the “bedroom” interaction is left to the reader’s imagination.

Heat Level 3
Contains graphic sex, erotic content, and adult language. May offend mainstream readers.
Explicit descriptive narrative and adult language used. Sex is portrayed in graphic terms. Lots of sex scenes and likely to depict acts beyond intercourse.

Heat Level 4
Hardcore erotic content. Graphic descriptive sex and adult language used. Will offend mainstream readers.
This heat level tends to stray from the elements of erotic romance and enter the boundaries of strong pure erotica.

I hope you find your romantic reading and writing comfort zone...

Tuesday, 22 June 2021


Sharing the NEWS!!! 

PUBLICATION DAY... Amazon #1 in Fiction Anthologies

RELUCTANT BRIDE - ANTHOLOGY    Evernight Publishing ​
12 amazing #erotic #contemporary #romances    

He’s older, wiser, and always gets what he wants. This wedding is happening ... whether the bride likes it or not.
Twelve hand-picked stories that feature young reluctant brides and the older men determined to claim them. These forced marriages may start out frigid, but they will prove that love can conquer all.

Evernight Publishing's Reluctant Bride anthology stories are sure to deliver passion that is off the charts, scorching hot sex, and sigh-worthy happy ever afters.


Reluctant Love is included in the 
Reluctant Bride - Anthology

Can Amal commit to an unwanted marriage?

Amal Khan doesn’t want a new man in her life and she certainly doesn’t need a sexy, silver-haired Frenchman nearly twice her age as a lover. But when design engineer, Lucas Martinez, arrives to troubleshoot during the pandemic, he invades not only her world, but also her bed and her heart.

Lucas falls ill with the deadly virus and in an attempt to solve a family problem, he forces the unwilling Amal into a hasty marriage.

Amal’s faced with a dilemma. It’s one thing to have a fling with an older man, but another to marry, knowing Lucas might die.

Dare she take a chance, or would she be out of her depth and facing heartache?

FLEETING ENCOUNTERS: Lady Francesca - Arabella Sheen - Excerpt One

   Fleeting Encounters: Lady Francesca     Arabella Sheen Fleeting Encounters Series … offers erotic bedtime reading Dare Lady...