Romance Writing Genre Exercise – How many are there and which ones are you good at?


Time: 30-60 minutes


Action Step #1 – Every story or novel that is written falls into a category. These categories are called genres, romance for example is a genre. Some of the more popular ones include: Action/adventure, mystery, crime, drama, romance, comedy, children, horror, fantasy and science fiction. Depending on how you break them up, there are many genres to choose from within the main category of romance.  Romantic suspense for example.  


Maybe you haven’t determined your sub-genre of choice yet. If you have a difficult story idea that isn’t panning out, it could be that you are writing in the wrong genre for you. Ask yourself these questions to give you an idea of what you’d like to write. Create a list.


·        What types of books do you read the most?

·        What types of books do you not like?

·        In your writing, does one genre stand out?

·        Are you prone to writing stories that fit more than one genre?


Action Step #2 – Some people are better than others at writing in different genres. It could be that you are being called to one particular category of creative writing, but you’ll never know until you sample a few other genres.


Here is your exercise. Create a scene involving two characters. Use one of the genres listed above or one that you like that you might not see here. Make it about a page. See where the story takes you.


After writing the scene with a genre that you like, write another scene involving two characters in another genre. Just try your hand at it. You might find you like other categories besides the one you seem to gravitate to.


Action Step #3 – Each genre has certain characteristics. For instance, in mystery stories, someone always seems to die under suspicious circumstances. In a historical romantic story, someone is going to fall in love at some point in the past – when and how is up to you and your chosen sub-genre.


Read a short story or an excerpt from your favorite romance novel(s). Write down what you see as the characteristics of that story genre. Next, research at your favorite sub-genres and jot down any recurring characteristics.