Read on to find out more from the next extract from All About Writing's “The Guide To Writing Romance”:
Fifth Secret: Write in strong scenes.
Too many novices commit the cardinal sin of storytelling: Their narrative consists of just “one damned thing after another”, as Elbert Hubbard put it.It should never be a series of “and then…and then…and thens.” Neither do you want to tell us what happened, as though you were telling us quickly over the phone.
We want to feel we are there. We want to watch the action unfold and hear the lovers argue and make up. Plunge us into the action by telling us the story in a series of tangible scenes that show us what’s happening to them.
Each should have a dramatic point which drives the story forward or reveals an important aspect of your hero or heroine’s character. You may choose to write a scene to extol the beauties of the landscape – but only if this gives us insight into the heroine’s state of mind.
If you like, try this to see how you get on with scenes. Write a short scene in which your heroine, who has just discovered that the hero has refused her leave application, marches into his office to find his personal assistant massaging his shoulders.
Show us what happens from the time she enters the room. What do they say to each other (in direct speech, or dialogue) and how does the scene end? You may choose to include a scene where two people merely pour tea and exchange pleasantries – but only if this sheds light on your heroine, or someone says something shocking in this context of domestic banality.