Writer Down…I Repeat Writer Down


Writer down people!

I don’t know how I did it but I have displaced a top rib which in turn has made the shoulder blade on that side to be displaced as well.

Im in constant pain and it feels like I need someone to pop my arm back into place but its not that simple.

The major downside is I think I’ve got a pinched nerve because whenever I try to do anything I loose feeling in my fingertips.

So as you can imagine its become hard to type. Hence the missing blog post on Wednesday and today.

Musings from a Curvy Romance Writer will be back as soon as I get this figured out.

Wish me luck, say a prayer and send positive thoughts my way!

BTW – I welcome any and all suggestions you guys might have to treating this crazy rib, shoulder and arm thing.

How to Write a Villain That Readers Will Love to Hate

How To Write A Villain That Readers Will Love To Hate

Every story has a villain.

While most stories have villains that are generic and somewhat boring others have villains that are creepy and leave you feeling freaked out.

The best type of villain, in my opinion, are the ones where you aren’t quite sure if the character is truly a villain or just misunderstood or the type where you know they are the villain of the story and yet you find yourself rooting for them anyway. 

Literature examples of villains we found ourselves rooting for:

  • Lestat from Interview With A Vampire
  • Hannibal Lecter from Silence Of The Lambs
  • The Phantom from The Phantom of the Opera
  • Normal Bates from Psycho
  • Count Dracula from Dracula
  • Patrick Bateman from American Psycho
  • Smegal/Gollum from The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (Not the main villain in the story)
  • Humbert Humbert from Lolita
  • Lord Voldemort from the Harry Potter Series

TV/Movie examples of villains we found ourselves rooting for:

  • Loki in The Avengers
  • Dexter in Dexter
  • Professor Moriarty from Sherlock
  • The Joker in The Dark Knight
  • Tony Montana in Scarface
  • The Grinch in How The Grinch Stole Christmas

What is a villain?

By definition a villain is:

  • a character whose evil actions or motives are important to the plot.
  • a cruelly malicious person who is involved in or devoted to wickedness or crime.
  • a scoundrel.
  • an antagonist who tries to keep the protagonist from obtaining their goals.
  • a character who has a negative effect on other characters.

What makes a great villain?

  • Traits and qualities the reader can hate.
  • Traits and qualities the reader can love.
  • A soft spot or weakness. Something that really speaks about the humanity of the character.
  • A strong and compelling backstory that guides and motivates the villain from beginning to end.
  • A believable relationship between the villain and the protagonist that plays off of each other in an interesting way. For instance creating opposites between the antagonist and the protagonist.
    • Example: The protagonist is shy, honest and noble while the antagonist is out going, deceitful and out for himself.
  • An end game that goes beyond defeating the protagonist. Really take the time to flesh out the villains goals, motivations, wants and desires. What would be the villains Happily Every After Ending be?

The #1 “Don’t” rule for Villains

Don’t build your villain up, creating a compelling back story that feeds into the main story and then fail to write a proper climax between the antagonist and protagonist.

Nothing will turn a reader against a story as quick as a villain who doesn’t follow through.

Don’t tease the reader by slowly building up the tension between the two characters to basically have it fall limp and end before the climax has even begun.

If you’ve taken the time to write a strong, believable villain who creates compassion, tension, and conflict in your reader don’t short change them by making the climax lack-luster with the villain easily defeated.

Give the reader and the villain a climax to be proud of.

Never forget that the best villains are the ones readers can connect with.

The more believable and like-able the villain the more frightening and captivating they become in the readers mind.

I’ll end this with a question/quote to ponder on by Gregory Maguire from Wicked:

“Are people born wicked or do they have wickedness thrust upon them?”

– Gregory Maguire

Every Villain is a hero in his own mind

Stay Tuned

Wednesday @ 9 am “The Most Popular Book Villains”

Friday @ 9 am “Plus Size Hatred and The Bullies Who Enforce It”Let's Chat Graphic

  • Who is your favorite book villain?
  • Who is your favorite TV/movie villain?
  • What is it about a villain that captures your interest?

Do Men Who Prefer Plus Size Women Actually Exist?

Do Men Who Prefer Plus Size Women Actually Exist

If you’ve been around my blog then you know I’m all about body confidence no matter what your size is.

I’m also all about embracing your body and learning to appreciate what you have right now, not what you hope to obtain in the future.

This includes believing when someone else says

“Damn woman you are fine!”

When you are a plus size woman hearing that your first thought is always going to be

He’s joking with me. Someone must have dared him to say that.

Which is sad but true.

When it seems as though he isn’t being put up to it the next thought is,

He must be one of those guys with a fat fetish or he’s a chubby chaser. 


Why do we think like this?

What is the difference between a fetish and a personal preference?

When you really sit down and analyze this there is no difference.

When a man says “Damn woman you are fine!” to a tall, tanned, skinny blond woman do we think he must have a barbie fetish or that he’s a skinny chaser?

No, we don’t.

So why do we automatically think this way when the woman is fat?

It’s because we are all taught that being fat equals something disgusting.

If someone is attracted to someone else that happens to be fat then their preference is abnormal therefore that person has a fat fetish.

Please. That’s just lazy thinking. Lazy and destructive.

What one person might view as a fetish another person might view as a normal desire

Yes, there are sexual preferences that will seem unusual, bizarre, mind boggling, scary and even disgusting to you but that’s just your opinion. To someone else it’s just normal.

We are all different.

We all have desires and attractions that do not fit society’s mold.

It might be something small or it might be something extreme but if we labeled every “abnormal” desire a fetish then we would technically all be fetishists which negates the term entirely.

Let’s look “fetish” up in the dictionary.

1. an object regarded with awe as being the embodiment or habitation of a potent spirit or as having magical potency.

2. any object, idea, etc., eliciting unquestioning reverence, respect, or devotion:

to make a fetish of high grades.
3. Psychology. any object or nongenital part of the body that causes habitual erotic response or fixation.

So basically, according to this definition on Dictionary.com every man that has a habitual erotic response to boobs has a fetish for boobs.

I don’t know about you but, I have a thing for thick necks and large rough hands on men.

All I have to do is look at them and I get aroused. Does this mean I have a neck and hand fetish or that my personal preference is men with thick necks and large hands?

Do you get where I’m going with this?

We need to stop thinking that fat people are undesirable just because society says so.

We are society.

If we want society to stop treating fatness as disgusting then we need to stop thinking and acting that way. 

We also need to stop thinking that if someone is attracted to someone else because they are fat then that person is odd and has a fat fetish.

That person is not odd.

You can not control what attracts you physically or mentally but you can control how you handle that attraction.

Now, let’s move on to whether or not men who prefer truly plus size women actually exist.

Yes. Yes they do. 100%. Without a doubt. 

You’re probably thinking, Where are they? If they truly exist why can’t I find them?

Here’s just a few reason why:

  • You haven’t been looking. Meaning they are in your daily life but you haven’t noticed them.
  • You’ve been “looking” but have a negative body image of yourself so you come off as angry or unhappy which is never appealing no matter what your body size is.
  • You’ve been looking but the guys who have showed interest in you weren’t your type.
  • You had guys who were your type approach you but you thought it was a joke and either dismissed it or were rude to them.
  • You have guys who are attracted to you but are just friends with you because they are either afraid you will reject them or afraid that they will be made fun of by other people.
  • You have guys who are attracted to you but have bought into the whole fat = disgusting mindset that they are freaked out by their attraction and either ignore you or are rude to you.

Once you learn that you don’t need to be a perfect size to be happy, or healthy or attractive a huge burden will be lifted from you.

You will find that you smile more, are happier and your body language will exude a feeling of confidence which is always sexy.

After you realize you are beautiful just the way you are the next step is to learn to accept compliments from others. Once you’ve accomplished that you will start to see people (both men and women) gravitate towards you.

Be open to it.

Don’t judge or second guess someone’s intentions.

Go with the flow and if you like the other person give them a shot.

However, listen to your instincts. If you feel uncomfortable around them, there’s usually a reason why.

Ok, so now that we know that these men do exist where can you find them?

Anywhere and Everywhere

No. Really.

Clear your mind, squash your self doubts, and open your eyes.

The next time you see someone you think you might be attracted to, smile!

A simple smile could be just the thing to give him the courage to come over and speak to you.

If clubs and group dating events aren’t your thing , where do you go to meet these men?

Well, what sort of things do you like to do?

  • Do you like to read? Then hang out at all your local bookstores, coffee shops and libraries.
  • Do you like shopping? Then hang out all your favorite malls and shops.
  • Do you like watching movies? Then hang out at the movie theater or movie stores.
  • Do you like art? Then hang out at art museums and local art galleries.
  • Do you like to eat/cook? Take a cooking class or hang out at cooking supply stores.

Are you catching onto the theme here?

Think about what excites you and get out of the house and immerse yourself in that.

Chances are that the other people there like the same thing you do and if they are single you’re good to go!

If you still doubt that men who prefer plus size women exists and you are looking to pick the brain of a man who is openly attracted to plus size women or just belong to a community of open admirers of people of size try:

The following are a few online dating websites to try out:

If you still can’t believe that such men exist take some time to listen to MrAdamSir and his feeling on big beautiful women and his attraction to them.

Stay Tuned

Monday @ 9 amHow To Write The Perfect Villain We All Love To Hate

Wednesday @ 9 amThe Most Popular Book Villains

Let's Chat Graphic

  • Have you noticed a man who prefers plus size women (in real life, not just online)?
  • Have you dated a plus size loving man?
  • What are your thoughts on the stigmas that are placed on men who are attracted to plus size women?

How To Write The Perfect Curve Loving Hero

How To Write The Perfect Curve Loving Hero

The perfect curve loving hero is not a unicorn.

He actually exists, to a certain degree, in real life. (I say to a certain degree because no one is truly perfect.)

If this is true why is it so hard to write one?

Because writing is just plain hard.

Well, it is. It’s not easy, especially when you’re trying your hardest to portray the characters and the story the best way possible.

However, crafting your curve loving hero doesn’t have to be so difficult.

Step 1: Do you research. 

If you are a man who loves curvy plus size women and is writing about a man who loves them as well your first step should be to sit down and really think about why you are attracted to plus size women.

  • What is it about that particular body type that attracts and excites you?
  • What do you think about when you look at her?
  • How does she make you feel?
  • What do you say to her?

If you are a plus size woman who is loved by a curve loving man then sit and think about the reasons he’s mentioned as to why he is attracted to you. Asking him again is a great way to refresh your memory and bring you two closer together (in and out of the bedroom). Here are some questions to ask him:

  • What is it about you as a person that he is attracted to?
  • What is it about your body that excites him?
  • What turns him on in the bedroom?
  • What turns him on when you are out in public?
  • Did his friends or family give him a hard time because he was attracted to plus size women?
  • How does he feel about being attracted to plus size women?

If neither of these holds true for you, don’t despair. There are plenty of forums and dating sites that are for men who love plus size women. Send out a message to them to let them know you are researching a character and need their input. They will be more then happy to help you. Here are some questions to ask them:

  • Are you only attracted to plus size women or any women that excites you?
  • What is it about plus size women that attracts you?
  • Has someone ever made fun of you for loving plus size women and if so how did you handle it?
  • What is your dream woman like physically and mentally?
  • How do you feel when a woman you are attracted to puts herself down? What do you say to her when that happens?
  • Can you name your favorite sexual fantasy?

Step 2: Read some popular plus size romance books.

Technically you can still classify this under research but I feel it’s separate because now you need to pay attention to how you feel when you read the heroes other people have created. While reading, keep a pad of paper and a pencil to write down what comes to mind. Some questions to consider:

  • Do you like this hero? If yes, why? If no, why?
  • Is there anything in particular that he says, thinks or does that you like?
  • Is there anything in particular that he says, thinks or does that you hate?
  • Is the hero surprised that he is attracted to her? If so how does that make you feel?
  • Does the hero’s friends and family make of fun of him for being attracted to her? If so, how does he handle it and how do you feel about it?
  • Is he open about his attraction to her or does he try to hide it? If  he tries to hide it why? How does that make you feel?
  • If the heroine puts herself down and has poor body confidence how does the hero handle it? Do you like how he handles it or does it make you roll your eyes?
  • How does the hero show his attraction? What does he do with her in the bedroom? Do you find his attraction real and believable? If not, why? What in particular seems unrealistic?
  • After you are done reading the book go online and read the comments left by other readers. How did they react to the hero? How do their reactions compare to yours? (After you do this you will have a good idea of where your like and dislikes are compared to other readers.)

Step 3: Write a hero that excites you. 

If you write a hero you are excited about and proud of, it will show and your readers will fall in love with him.

Don’t stress about pleasing every reader because that’s impossible but some guidelines you could keep in mind when crafting your hero are:

Things he likes:

  • Smart Women
  • Strong Women
  • A Woman who keeps him on his toes but treats him with respect

Things he loves:

  • All of her body
  • All of her imperfections
  • All of her little quirks

What he has:

  • Faults but acknowledges them
  • A life and desires outside of the heroine
  • Family and friends that he cares about
  • A healthy respect for women

What he doesn’t care about:

  • The fact that she is plus size
  • The fact that he is attracted to her because she is plus size
  • The heroine being fat and needing to loose weight (Meaning he never asks her to go on a diet)

What he will do:

  • Openly show his attraction to her
  • Treat her with respect
  • Pick her up when her confidence falls

If you need help fleshing out your hero check out some of the articles and worksheets I saved on my Pinterest board titled: Character Building

All of Me by John Legend, for me, sums up what the perfect romance hero feels when he falls for his plus size heroine. Listen to the lyrics and tell me if you agree.

Stay Tuned

Wednesday @ 9 amThe Most Dream Worthy Heroes of All Time

Friday @ 9 amDo Men Who Love Plus Size Women Actually Exist?”Let's Chat Graphic

  • What do you like to see in curve loving heroes?
  • What do you hate to see in curve loving heroes?
  • Who is your favorite curve loving hero?


A List of Plus Sized Heroines and the Heroes That Love Them

20 Plus Size Heroines and The Men Who Love Them

We’ve all got our favorite couples in romance.

Why they are our favorite is as varied as the reader.

However, when someone sees a fictional couple as a favorite then you can guaranteed that the writer did their job.

In order for there to be a favorite there has to be a connection between not just one character with the reader, not just two, but the dynamic between two characters with the reader.

That is not easily done.

Sure, there are a lot of favorite heroines and we’ve all got a long list of book boyfriends we gravitate too ;-) But its rare for a reader to fall in love with both the hero and heroine and who they are as a couple.

I did an informal survey where I asked two questions.

(*Keep in mind that these answers are varied. I randomly picked romance readers, asked them two questions and pooled thier answers together. There is a wide variety of romances listed along with a wide variety of “meaning” when it comes to couples.*)

Question #1: What is your favorite Plus Size Romance?

Listed below are the top 20 answers.

  1. Beau: Cowboy Protector (Harts of the Rodeo Series #5) by Marin Thomas
  2. Bonds of Justice (Psy-Changeling #8) by Nalini Singh
  3. Curve My Attitude (The Curvies #2) by Sarah Gai
  4. Delicate Devastation (The Endurers #3) by Rose Wynters
  5. Fat Assassins by Marita Fowler
  6. Heart Secret (Celta’s Heartmates #11) by Robin D. Owens
  7. Heavy Issues (Bowen #2) by Elle Aycart
  8. How To Drive A Dragon Crazy (Dragon Kin #6) by G.A. Aiken
  9. Making Chase (Chase Brothers #4) by Lauren Dane
  10. Master of the Mountain (Mountain Masters & Dark Haven #1) by Cherise Sinclair
  11. Misadventures of Fatwoman by Julie Elizabeth Powell
  12. Motorcycle Man (Dream Man #4) by Kristen Ashley
  13. My Wolf Cowboy (Wolf Town Guardians #3) by Rose Wynters
  14. Nine Rules To Break When Romancing A Rake (Love By Numbers #1) by Sarah MacLean
  15. Perfection (Neighbor From Hell #2) by R.L. Mathewson
  16. Taking Shots (Assasins #1) by Toni Aleo
  17. Too Big To Miss by Sue Ann Jaffarian
  18. Too Much Temptation (Brava Brothers #1) by Lori Foster
  19. You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me by Sarra Manning
  20. Zaftig: Well Rounded Erotica by Hanne Blank

Question #2: Out of the top 20 Romances You listed which couple did you like the most?

The following list shows the couples rated from 1st – 20th.

  1. Sierra and Beau from Beau Cowboy Protector
    1. Beau Adams can’t stop thinking about Sierra Byrne. Her feisty spirit and ample curves dominate his thoughts, while he should be focused on getting himself and Midnight, the Harts’ prized stallion, to the National Finals Rodeo. When Beau and Sierra’s electric connection finally leads to a steamy night together, Beau hopes it’s the beginning of something more. As much as Sierra wants to be with Beau, anything long-term is out of the question. A recently diagnosed eye disease will soon leave her blind, and she can’t ask a rising rodeo star like Beau to take on that responsibility. Though she tries to pretend their tryst was just another item on her bucket list, Sierra’s true feelings run a lot deeper. Will she let her affliction steal not only her sight, but her dreams of happiness, as well?
  2. Andi and Misadventures from Misadventures of Fatwoman (another “couple” I’m so happy to see on the list)
    1. Andi has always been anxious about her weight and like many women, thinks that unless she is thin, she has no value. Follow her ‘misadventures’ and see if this is true or will she find there are more important things that makes a person who and what they are?
  3. Rebecca and Logan from Master of the Mountain 
    1. When Rebecca’s lover talks her into a mountain lodge vacation with his swing club, she soon learns she’s not cut out for playing musical beds. But with her boyfriend “entertaining” in their cabin, she has nowhere to sleep. Logan, the lodge owner, finds her freezing on the porch. After hauling her inside, he warms her in his own bed, and there the experienced Dominant discovers that Rebecca might not be a swinger…but she is definitely a submissive. Rebecca knows that no one can love her plump, scarred body. But, to her surprise, Logan disagrees and is quite happy to show her just how much he enjoys her curves. Under his skilled hands, Rebecca loses not only her inhibitions, but also her heart. Damaged from the war, Logan considers himself too dangerous to be around the enticing little sub. He sends her away for her own safety, not realizing she thinks she’s been rejected because of her size. When Logan’s mountains echo with her voice long after she’s gone, he knows she’s left behind part of herself—and taken his heart. But when he arrives in the city to reclaim her, Rebecca’s phone has been disconnected and her apartment is empty…
  4. Tyra and Tack from Motorcycle Man 
    1. Tyra Masters has had enough drama to last a lifetime. Now, she’s back on track and looking forward to her new, quiet life. Until she meets the man of her dreams. The tattooed, muscled biker plies her with tequila-and the best sex of her life. She knows it isn’t the tequila and hot sex talking. He’s the kind of man she’s always wanted. Unfortunately, he’s also her new boss . . . Kane “Tack” Allen has a rule. He doesn’t employ someone he’s slept with. So when he learns he spent last night in bed with his new office manager, he quickly fires Tyra. Yet when Tyra stands up to him and fights for her job, Tack is intrigued. He tells her she can keep her job on one condition: no more sex. Ever. But as things heat up between them, Tack finds that he’ll be the one breaking all the rules…
  5. Elise and Charlie from Curve My Attitude
    1. Elise Michaels has to deal with her first love, Charlie Barnes, when he turns up at her best friend’s wedding. Charlie never expected to come face to face with Elise, the woman who broke his heart, when he returned home to support his friends on their wedding day.
  6. Kim and Peter from Delicate Devastation
    1. Who knew the priest could be such a bad boy?
      Peter Rynalt is every woman’s sinful dream. The other Endurers might call him a priest, but there’s nothing saintly about his seductive desires. He gets what he wants, but he sticks to one cardinal rule… he never goes back. Kim Jones hasn’t forgotten Peter since the night she made a play for him. He’s the one man in New Orleans that she can’t have. She doesn’t think she’ll see him again, but one night he rescues her from a demonic attack, and the heat between them can no longer be denied.
      Demons are roaming the streets of New Orleans. To survive, Kim will have to remain with Peter, but it comes at a price. She’ll have to pay for her protection with her body… and her heart.
  7. Izzy and Eibhear from How To Drive A Dragon Crazy
    1. Some things never go away, like vile enemies, bad ale, and annoying kin. Honestly, though, I thought I was finished with the one dragon I’d have done anything for: Éibhear the Blue, a big, gorgeous, blue-haired beast who thinks the world belongs to him. The world and, apparently, me. If Éibhear wants to play the caring hero and travel into the most forsaken of Gods forsaken lands to protect the one woman who doesn’t need it—namely me—I’ll let him. Because while I’m trying to fulfill  a ridiculous quest for a pushy god, I’m going to draw this overconfident warlord much too close, rekindle his fires, and enjoy every minute of his delicious defeat…
  8. Odelia and Greg from Too Big To Miss
    1. Too big to miss–that’s Odelia Grey. A never-married, middle-aged, plus-sized woman who makes no excuses for her weight, she’s not super woman just a mere mortal standing on the precipice of menopause, trying to cruise in an ill-fitting bra. She struggles with her relationships, her crazy family, and her crazier boss. And then there”s her knack for being in close proximity to dead people . . . . When her close friend Sophie London commits suicide in front of an online web-cam by putting a gun in her mouth and pulling the trigger, Odelia’s life is changed forever. Sophie, a plus-sized activist and inspiration to imperfect women, is the last person anyone would ever have expected to end her own life. Suspecting foul play, Odelia is determined to get to the bottom of her friend’s death. Odelia’s search for the truth takes her from southern California strip malls to the world of live web-cam porn to the ritzy enclave of Corona del Mar.
  9. Callie and Gabriel from Nine Rules To Break When Romancing A Rake
    1. Lady Calpurnia Hartwell, a plain but wealthy 28-year-old who refuses to marry a man who only desires her fortune, acts on a long-held crush and flings herself at Gabriel St. John, marquess of Ralston. Gabriel finds her antics more amusing than enticing, but his half-wild half-sister needs an impeccable chaperone and he chooses Callie for the role. Their proximity creates an infinite series of opportunities for the rake to practice his wiles on the more than willing wallflower.
  10. Neve and Max from You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me
    1. Sweet, bookish Neve Slater always plays by the rules. And the number one rule is that good-natured fat girls like her don’t get guys like gorgeous, handsome William, heir to Neve’s heart since university. But William’s been in LA for three years, and Neve’s been slimming down and re-inventing herself so that when he returns, he’ll fall head over heels in love with the new, improved her.
      So she’s not that interested in other men. Until her sister Celia points out that if Neve wants William to think she’s an experienced love-goddess and not the fumbling, awkward girl he left behind, then she’d better get some, well, experience.
      What Neve needs is someone to show her the ropes, someone like Celia’s colleague Max. Wicked, shallow, sexy Max. And since he’s such a man-slut, and so not Neve’s type, she certainly won’t fall for him. Because William is the man for her… right?
      Somewhere between losing weight and losing her inhibitions, Neve’s lost her heart – but to who?
  11. Zoe and Trevor from Perfection
    1. Zoe is used to taking care of herself and has long ago accepted that if anything bad was going to happen, it was going to happen to her. So when she loses her job over something most bosses would probably be happy with and her life starts going down hill from there she doesn’t expect it to get any better. She certainly didn’t expect any help from the loud jerk next door, but then again she has nothing to lose so puts her trust in him and hopes for the best. What she didn’t expect was the once in a lifetime opportunity that he offers her through an arrangement where they both benefit and no one is supposed to get hurt, but she should have known better because her luck has never been that good. Like most Bradfords, Trevor has a soft spot for food, but that’s about all. He leads a pretty straightforward life and likes to keep things simple and that includes his relationships. He wants the perfect woman and knows exactly what she’ll be like. So when he discovers much to his horror that he’s thinking about his frumpy little neighbor he decides the best way to get his head straight is by working her out of his system. He’ll keep her around, but only until he finds perfection.
  12. Christy and Cole from Heavy Issues
    1. Steering clear of relationships has never been difficult for demolitions expert Cole Bowen, but now, with his brother’s engagement sending the female population into full-blown hysterics and the town of Alden’s month-long festivities helping along, he finds himself in hell. When he discovers Alden’s new resident and the object of all his wet dreams, Christine Sheridan, has sworn off relationships and is going to hire a gigolo to get professionally laid, he decides to kill two birds with one stone. Christy is so not drinking again. Thanks to José Cuervo she has her friends signing her up for stud conventions and Cole frigging Bowen offering sex in exchange for fake dates, which is so out of the question it isn’t even funny. She knows the domineering man will push her boundaries, and after battling all her life with self-esteem issues, she isn’t ready for that. Too bad he won’t take no for an answer.

      Cole is determined to strip away all of her defenses but refuses to lower his ever-present walls, so when Christy realizes she wants more, she’s left with only two options; walk away or crack his shield and risk her heart in the process.

  13. Tate and Matt from Making Chase
    1. Tate Murphy is a girl from the wrong side of the tracks. She grew up a million miles away from the easy life Matt Chase has had. She’s spent her life pulling herself and her siblings up and out of that trailer by the railroad tracks and she hasn’t looked back. Matt Chase is a dream of a guy and she’s certainly not going to turn down a short fling with one of the most handsome men she’s ever seen! Matt Chase has watched each one of his brothers find love and he knows he’s ready for that too. It’s all a matter of finding the woman who captures his heart. He’s certainly sampled his fair share of them but none has moved him the way Tate Murphy does when he goes to her shop to thank her for some cookies and a thank you note. But as Matt gets to know Tate and appreciate her strength and unique beauty, he also realizes she’s got some big self esteem issues about her past. To build a future, he’s got to find a way past some big road blocks.
  14. Sophia and Max from Bonds of Justice
    1. Max Shannon is a good cop, one of the best in New York Enforcement. Born with a natural shield that protects him against Psy mental invasions, he knows he has little chance of advancement within the Psy-dominated power structure. The last case he expects to be assigned is that of a murderer targeting a Psy Councilor’s closest advisors. And the last woman he expects to compel him in the most sensual of ways is a Psy on the verge of a catastrophic mental fracture…Sophia Russo is a Justice-Psy, cursed with the ability to retrieve memories from men and women so twisted even veteran cops keep their distance. Appointed as Max’s liaison with the Psy, she finds herself fascinated by this human, her frozen heart threatening to thaw with forbidden emotion. But, her mind filled with other people’s nightmares, other people’s evil, she’s standing on the border between sanity and a silken darkness that urges her to take justice into her own hands, to become judge, jury…and executioner…
  15. Elli and Shea from Taking Shots
    1. No matter how hard she tries, Elleanor Fisher never thinks she’s good enough, from her job to her weight to her love life. After enduring years of abuse at the hands of an ex-boyfriend, Elli has been drifting through life in a daze. Until, that is, she meets Shea Adler on a promotional shoot for the NHL’s Nashville Assassins. Before Elli knows what’s happening, the gorgeous Shea breaks the ice and shatters her world. A brilliant athlete inside the rink, Shea Adler is tired of the life he’s living outside of it: the women, the money, the drinking. But everything changes when he meets Elli. After laying eyes on this feisty, witty, beautiful woman, he feels like he’s just taken the hardest hit of his life. No matter how skeptical she is, Shea knows they are meant to be together–if only he can convince Elli to put her insecurities aside before she misses out on a shot at love.
  16. Artemisia and Garrett from Heart Secret
    1. When a virulent disease killed the woman he loved and her baby, Garrett Primross was left alive, a reluctant survivor. Now, as a private eye, he strives to banish the memories of his past and rebuild his life. The Healers of Celta have something else in mind: Discover why he survived. He is monitored by Healer Artemisia Panax—his HeartMate, a love he never pursued. Still mourning his loss, he refuses to acknowledge her. Since her family was publicly disgraced, she’s used to such treatment. She wants nothing more than to guard her livelihood and protect the secrets she’s sworn to keep. Thrown together by duty, Garrett and Artemisia find the body of the last Black Magic Cultist who ruined her family. Suspicion flares, but they have little choice but to investigate the crime together. When their own lives are placed in danger, they realize that denying their HeartMates is only denying their own future.
  17. Natalie and Connor from My Wolf Cowboy
    1. Natalie Miller spent her entire life living on the Amish settlement in Missouri. Her world was safe… until the night a posse of snake shifters attack them. It seems like all hope is lost, but then theycome. Out of the darkness and flames, a group of naked men step out of the shadows, some of them human, while others are wolf. In the glow of the burning building, they are perfection, much too beautiful to ever be just mortal. And when one of them proclaims her to be his mate, Natalie realizes nothing will ever be the same again. The werewolf Connor is pure sin, packaged in a sexy, muscular frame of perfection… and he’s tempting her beyond belief. Her attraction to him goes against everything she was taught to believe in, but her body doesn’t care. She’s in heat, and he’s the only one that can quench the flames that burn inside of her.
  18. Grace and Noah from Too Much Temptation
    1. Grace Jenkins has had little experience with men–feeling too awkward and insecure to free the passionate woman inside her. But that hasn’t stopped her from dreaming about Noah Harper. Gorgeous, strong and darkly sexy, his rough edge beneath the polish promises no mercy in the bedroom. When Grace learns Noah’s engagement has ended in scandal, she shyly offers him her support and her friendship. But Noah’s looking for something extra. . . Noah wants Grace–badly. He wants to possess those curves that go on forever, to savor her sweet innocence, to take her to the limits of white-hot desire. . .again and again. What he doesn’t want is anything more complicated than that, and he knows Grace is a woman who deserves better. Grace, however, knows exactly what she wants–the kind of ecstasy only Noah can give her. Brazenly, she accepts, and Noah promises to make all her secret fantasies come true. . .
  19. Shasta and Ulyssa from Fat Assassins (I love the fact that a book which features best friends got picked on here!)
    1. Southern style sweet potatoes Shasta and Ulyssa have stuck together through thick and thin since their escape from third grade fat camp. But on one dark day, they both find themselves unemployed. A hazardous job hunt sees them turn down egg harvesting, drug dealing and phone sex before they settle for an exterminator job. 

Confusing mafia lingo leaves the girls thinking they’re being interviewed to cope with a rodent infestation. Confident that they can handle the job, they oversell their skills and demand half the payment up front to seal the deal. Skeptical at first, the mob boss decides to hire this unlikely pair when he mistakes their attitude for professional stoicism. The girls are shocked when presented with a target profile and an envelope full of cash. They want out, but it’s too late. The mob doesn’t allow do-overs. And certainly not when they’re whacking one of their own.
 The clock is ticking and when the body count is still zero after multiple attempts, the boss decides to bring in additional assassins to finish the job and tie up loose ends. And the girls just happen to be one of those loose ends.
  20. Women and their sexuality from Zaftig: Well Rounded Erotica
    1. “Many of the pieces are frank in celebrating the transformative force of sex, lust, desire, and the recognition that one is desired.” Zaftig women, described variously as “full-figured” and “pleasingly plump,” have long been a source of fetish and humor in erotic literature. Now the publisher of Best Women’s Erotica turns the tables with surprising, steamy stories showcasing the sex lives of women of size and their admirers. “Not only is Blank’s work infused with humor and mischievous irony, her delight in her own body and her sexuality is fabulously contagious: she makes you feel good about yourself in every way, shape, and form.” — Paramour

I was pleasantly surprised at what stories and couples came to mind. I can’t wait to read them all!

Stay TunedSaturday @ 9 amA List of Plus Sized Actresses and the Characters They Portray

Monday @ 9 am How to Craft The Perfect Curve Loving HeroLet's Chat Graphic

  • Did your favorite plus size romance or couple make the list?
  • If not what is the name of the romance and who are the couples?
  • Do you agree with what is on the list?
  • Where you surprised by any of the titles?

How To Create The Perfect Plus Sized Heroine

How To Create The Perfect Plus Sized Heroine

First things first… There is no such thing as perfect.

Back when romances began, readers could only find heroines who had the perfect “barbie” body. Blonde, white, tall, young and skinny.

Over the decades the romance community has slowly created a somewhat wide variety of heroines to choose from.

You can now find, heroines of almost all races, colors and physical size. Although, the normal romance is still a variation on white/anglo-saxon barbie.

Lately, this past decade has brought on the rise of the plus size heroine.


Maybe it’s because the average size women today are a sz 14/16 or maybe it’s because the majority of romance readers fall somewhere inside the plus size category themselves.

Whatever the reason, plus size heroines are here and I believe they are here to stay.

So, what kind of plus sized heroines are readers looking for?

  • A woman they can relate to
  • Someone who has flaws but doesn’t let those flaws hold her back
  • A woman not afraid to explore her sexuality

What do readers NOT want to see in their plus sized heroine?

  • A woman extremely negative with herself
  • Someone who is bitter about being fat and how the world treats her because of it
  • A woman who feels no man will ever love her because she is fat

Now, If you are a plus sized women yourself you know that we all have had these negative traits mentioned above at some point in our life. However, romance heroines are typically women romance readers strive to be. That’s why so many of them are the embodiment of “perfect”.

A perfect plus size heroine is:

  • A woman who is fat but doesn’t let that be a negative in her life.
  • Someone who wrestles with society’s beauty standards but still knows she’s beautiful and that beauty does not equal her worth.
  • A woman who, though fat, still chases after her dreams and enjoys her sexuality

Now that’s we’ve covered both the positive and negative traits a plus size heroine can have here’s how to mix it all together to create the perfect plus size heroine.

Step 1: Read books with plus size heroines.

In order to excel in a certain genre you need to read that genre. Plus size romances, though not a genre or sub genre, are an entirely different species of romance. You need to read at least a handful of these books to understand what works and doesn’t work. How? Well, first off, pay attention to how you feel when you read it.

  • Do you feel you can relate to the heroine? If so how?
  • Do you feel the heroine is too focused on her weight? If so, how?
  • Do you feel the heroine isn’t realistic? If so how?

More often then naught what stood out as a positive and negative to you was likewise a positive and negative to other readers. By paying attention to these things in other books you can be sure to add or eliminate in your own. Here is a list of plus size books on GoodReads to check out: Plus Sized Heroines.

Step 2: Ask romance readers what they want to see in their plus sized heroines. 

You would think this would be an obvious step, like step #1, but so many writers forget to do this. They craft their characters in a way that they envision them but rarely ever see what the majority of romance readers are looking for in their next read. A way to avoid this mistake is to check out forums, groups for readers, and book blogs specifically for plus sized heroines and the readers that love them. One particular Facebook group that I enjoy is Curvy Girl Romance: For Readers Who Love Alpha Heroes and Curvy Heroines.

Step 3: Watch some movies/videos and listen to songs with plus sized women. 

The best way to write about a certain character is to observe. (This holds true for characters of every race, size and physical makeup). Why do I think you should observe?

  • You can watch how a plus sized woman carry’s herself. Is she insecure? Is she confident? How does that show in her body language?
  • You can see how the world around her reacts to her size. Is she noticed? Is she discriminated against? Is she ignored?
  • You can observe how she handles someone she is attracted to. Does she let him/her know? Is she too shy? Does she struggle with thoughts that she isn’t lovable?
  • You can observe how a potential love interest views her. Does he/she see her as someone beautiful for a fat person or just plain beautiful? Does he/she let her size dictate how they show their feelings?

By doing this you will obtain a better understanding of how plus size women are portrayed in media and how best to describe your plus sized heroine and her story in the most believable way.

Step 4: Give your character depth.

  1. Break out a character work sheet and get the basics down.
  2. Fill out some character surveys to unearth her likes and dislikes.
  3. Dig deep into what makes your heroine who she is today and who you want her to be by the end of the book.
  4. Give your heroine real world problems and experiences so that she is real to the reader.
  5. Make sure you really think about the dreams and aspirations of your heroine and all the ways she might obtain them.

In the end it doesn’t matter if your heroine is a size 2 or 22 or even bigger, there will always be a reader out there just waiting for her to be created.

However, that doesn’t mean you can slack off and make a lack luster heroine.

All you have to do is pay attention to what you like, what readers are looking for, and what makes real people tick and your character will shine no matter the size.

Stay Tuned

Wednesday @ 9 amA List of Plus Sized Heroines and the Heroes That Love ThemLet's Chat Graphic

Friday @ 9 am “A List of Plus Sized Actresses and the Characters They Portray

  • Do you have any experience reading or writing plus size heroines?
  • What do you like/want to see more of with plus size heroines?
  • What do you hate/want to see less of with plus size heroines?


Does Your Appearance Really Make a Difference?

Does Your Appearance Really Make A Difference


Appearance really does matter.

I know it sucks to say that and it shouldn’t be that way but it does.

If you think that you are the only person on earth who isn’t affected by appearance think again.

Think back to the last homeless person you saw. What if that “homeless person” wasn’t really homeless. What if he just dressed to look like that and your brain labeled him homeless because that’s how he looked.

Check out this video from ModelPrankstersTVDoes Appearance Change How People Are Treated


We all do this.

We all make split second decisions based on how something or someone looks. It’s just how our brains are wired. 

However, just because that is human nature doesn’t mean you shouldn’t stop and think about it and treat each person with respect and kindness no matter what. 

Now let’s take it from the extreme to the every day.

Picture yourself at the mall walking along checking out some of the stores and doing a little bit of “people watching”. You see a person dressed in a white tank top, a thick gold chain, pants hanging off the butt and visible tattoos and you think “Thug” right? Well what if you saw the same man in a nice tailored suite? Do you still see him as a thug just dressed in a suite or a business man who takes pride in his appearance and who seems to have his life together?

Check out these eye opening photos that Joel Parés took for his series “Judging America“.

Society as a whole needs to learn to stop judging someone based on physical appearances. However, that hasn’t happened yet and I’m pretty sure it wont anytime soon.

So what does that mean? 

It means that if you want to be treated a certain way you need to dress the part. It’s shallow but it’s true.

  • If you want to be seen as someone who’s life isn’t a mess then you can’t dress like a slob.
  • If you want to be seen as a professional who would get hired at job interviews then you can’t go to the interview dressed like a thug or a biker or etc…
  • If you want to be seen as someone who takes care of themselves then you cant walk around in dirty clothes and such.

We can’t control how people judge us but we can control who they see upon first impression.

In order to obtain what we want in life we have to actively reach for it. 

What do I mean?

You can’t walk around looking like a slob (no matter how comfortable that is) and expect people to take you seriously in the professional world. If you want a great job you need to dress for the part.

Now, let’s think of this on a more social level.

If you want to have a social life you need to dress like you care about yourself.

Now, you’re thinking, “If they are a true friend it wont matter what I look like.” 

And that is 100% true to a certain degree.

We all take our cues on how to treat someone by taking into account how they look at that moment, what their body language is saying and what they are verbally saying.

Do you feel like people ignore you or go out of their way to not interact with you?

Are people commenting that you look tired or asking if you’re sick when you aren’t? 

It’s all in your appearance and body language. 

I can tell you from personal experience that if I go through a day where I put no effort what so ever in my clothes or my hair or my makeup that I basically become a walking ghost where no one seems to notice me and the ones that do will always comment on how tired I look or ask if I was sick.

The same people that are friendly and interactive with me when I look good will barely talk to me on days where I’m looking like a slob. If they do they are usually abrupt about it.

I once asked a few “friends” why that was and they were honest and told me because I was harder to look at when I wasn’t “pretty” (I kid you not). So the logical way to look at this is that I needed better friends but in reality we all think like this in some degree.

These friends also mentioned that I looked angry when I didn’t take the time in my appearance, like I didn’t want people to talk to me.

It took a while for me to not be pissed about that but eventually I calmed down enough to really think it through.

Why is that when women go without makeup they give off the impression that they are angry or that they want to be left alone? 

I really thought long and hard and I realized that when I go out without putting any effort into my appearance I feel uncomfortable, awkward, self conscience, tired and yes even angry.


I have no idea but I’m assuming since I’m feeling that way inside it’s showing outwardly as well.

What happens if I spend time on my appearance even though I’m angry and pissed off and go out in public?

Will I be treated the same as when I looked like a “slob”? 


It seems that no matter how you feel inside, if your outward appearance shows positively that is usually how you are perceived.

The most surprising thing I found out was that after taking the time on my appearance and having good interactions with people my bad, pissy mood turned into a great mood where I felt friendly and dare I say it, even happy.

Have you noticed this about yourself?

We are all beautiful and deserve respect, kindness and love no matter what we look like. 

We don’t need makeup to look or feel beautiful BUT makeup does have an affect on how we are perceived.

You might hate makeup and you might not but you can’t deny the power it has to change your opinion about someone.

Check out Vadim Andreev’s Before and After Makeup Photos.

Before and after makeup


Pay attention to how you feel about each persons when you look at their “before” image vs their “after”.

It’s pretty different isn’t it.

It’s amazing really, how something so visual affects everything we think, feel, and observe about someone else.

You do not need to have the best clothes, the best hair or the best makeup to be worth someone’s time, attention, kindness and love. 

However, don’t expect society to see you as one way when you look and dress another.

Go for what you want out of life.

Do everything in your power to make your dreams happen, including paying attention to your appearance in some form or another.

If you want society to stop judging on based on appearances then think twice before judging someone else on theirs.  Encourage others to do the same. Eventually we might all get to a point where it wont matter how we are dressed.

Stay Tuned

Monday @ 9 am “How To Craft The Perfect Plus Size Heroine”

Wednesday @ 9 am “Awesome Plus Size Book Heroines You Need To Check Out” Let's Chat Graphic

  • How did you feel when you watched the video and check out the pictures on appearance?
  • Do you notice yourself making snap judgements based on appearances?
  • Have you noticed being treated differently based on how you look?
  • Do you feel better about yourself when you take time to do your hair and makeup?

What Are The Most Popular Sub Genres in Romance & How Do They Compare?

The Most Popular Sub Genres in Romance and How They Compare

Most people who have not been lucky enough to read a romance book think that all romance books are the same.

Of course, those of us who actually read and enjoy romance know that this genre is vast and varied.

Romance is a literary genre that has many sub genres. Even some of the sub genres have sub genres or themes.

But no matter how many different types of Romance sub genres we have they all have one thing in common:

An emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending

I’ve been a reader of romance for more then a decade and I just started realizing about two years ago that there was a whole world of romance I didn’t know existed.

Why are there so many seb genres in Romance?

I think it all has to do with supply and demand. The writers and publisher hear what we want and write it and then it gets classified so that we can easily find it. Sometimes that’s a great thing and sometimes that’s a horrible thing.

How can this classifying system be horrible?

Let’s say you like romantic suspense and therefore you only look in the romantic suspense category when you are checking out books. Because of that you will only see books and authors that fall under Romantic Suspense. Big deal you say? It is a big deal. Just think about all the great stories and authors you are missing because your reading focus is too narrow.

I realized a few months ago that I was guilty of this. That’s why I decided to create the Ultimate Romance Reader Challange 2015. I decided the best way to widen my romance reading horizon was to read two books out of every sub genre of romance Amazon listed.

I hope by the end of this year I will find an appreciation for all the genres and even stumble across a new favorite author or two.

So, just how many sub genres are there?

Let’s break it down. (All definitions are from RomanceWiki.com and all links are to Amazon and GoodReads)

Literary Genre:



Category Romance: Also known as Series Titles. Category Romances are short books with no more then 200 pages or 55,000 words. The books are published in clearly delineated categories, with a certain number of books being published in each category every month. Each book in a line will usually share a theme but be different from each other.

Single-Title Romance: This label is given to any romance book not published as part of a category. They are longer books with 350-400 pages or 100,000-110,000 words. Each book is different and will stay on bookshelves until the bookseller decides to take it down.

Sub genres:

African – American Romance

Contemporary Romance

The following are common themes of Contemporary Romance:


 The following are common themes found in Erotica:

Fantasy Romance  

Gay Romance

Gothic Romance

Historical Romance

The following are common themes in Historical Romance:


Inspirational Romance

The following are common themes in Inspirational Romance:


Military Romance

Multi-Cultural Romance

New Adult Romance

Paranormal Romance

The following are common themes in Paranormal Romance:

Regency Romance

Romantic Comedy

Romantic Suspense

Science Fiction Romance


Time-Travel Romance


Western Romance

Young Adult Romance

According to RWA the following sub genres and tropes are the most popular in the Romance genre:

Top romance subgenres by format read primarily:

Print: #1) Romantic Suspense (53%) #2)Contemporary Romance (41%) #3) Historical Romance (34%) #4) Erotic Romance (33%) #5)New Adult (26%) #6) Paranormal Romance (19%) #7) Young Adult Romance (18%) and #8) Christian Romance (17%).

E-book: #1) Romantic Suspense (48%) #2) Contemporary Romance (44%) #3) Erotic Romance (42%) #4) Historical Romance (33%) #5) Paranormal Romance (30%) #6) New Adult (26%) #7) Young Adult Romance (18%) and #8) Christian Romance (14%).

Top 10 popular romance tropes: (#1) Friends to Lovers (#2) Soul Mate/Fate (#3) Second Chance at Love (#4) Secret Romance (#5) First Love (#6) Strong Hero/Heroine (#7) Reunited Lovers (#8) Love Triangle (#9) Sexy Billionaire/Millionaire (#10) Sassy Heroine


According to Amazon: the following Romance Genre sub genres are listed from the most amount of books to the least:

Amazon Romance Genre Print Books (559,350)

  1. Erotic (220,651)
  2. Contemporary (142,522)
  3. Historical (60,672)
  4. Paranormal Romance (41,098)
  5. Romantic Suspense (32,071)
  6. Fantasy (17,724)
  7. Romantic Comedy (17,058)
  8. Inspirational Romance (16,764)
  9. Gay Romance (15,664)
  10. Regency Romance (12,944)
  11. Young Adult Romance (12,507)
  12. Western Romance (11,277)
  13. New Adult (10,412)
  14. Vampire Romance (7,408)
  15. Multi-Cultural Romance (7,213)
  16. Holiday Romance (6,935)
  17. African American Romance (6,891)
  18. Gothic Romance (6,320)
  19. Military Romance (5,954)
  20. Science Fiction Romance (4,612)
  21. Time Travel Romance (4,364)
  22. Lesbian Romance (4,208)
  23. Sports Romance (3,337)

Amazon Romance Genre EBooks (251,571)

  1. Contemporary Romance (92,026)
  2. Paranormal Romance (31,021)
  3. Historical Romance (29,536)
  4. Romantic Suspense (26,276)
  5. LGBT Romance (18,655)
  6. Fantasy Romance (17,850)
  7. Romantic Comedy (14,710)
  8. Inspirational Romance (14,601)
  9. New Adult Romance (9,108)
  10. Western Romance (7,917)
  11. Multi-Cultural Romance (6,471)
  12. African American Romance (6,359)
  13. Holiday Romance (5,970)
  14. Science Fiction Romance (5,742)
  15. Military Romance (5,202)
  16. Sports Romance (2,977)
  17. Time Travel Romance (2,772)
  18. Gothic Romance (895)

No matter what sub genre you like to read or what format you like to read it on,

there is plenty of reading material to last you a lifetime!

So no more excuses. Go out there and explore the world of Romance!

Stay Tuned

Friday @ 9 amDoes Showing Pride in Your Appearance Really Make a Difference?

Monday @ 9 amHow to Craft The Perfect Plus Size HeroineLet's Chat Graphic

  • What is your favorite sub genre of romance? Why?
  • What is your least favorite sub genre of romance? Why?
  • Do you feel a sub genre and/or theme was left out?
  • What do you think of the popularity numbers and amount of books published per sub genre?

Your Formatting, Word Counts and Page Length Questions Answered

Formatting Guidelines Word Counts and Page Lengths for Fiction

If you’re new to the submitting process you might be racking your brain right about now on how to properly format your fiction manuscript.

No doubt you’ve done a quick Google search and found a few examples or read a few books that talked about it and found that they all have slightly different things to say.

That’s because the proper way to format your fiction manuscript is really up to who you are submitting it to.

However, there is a basic guideline to follow so that in case you’re favorite publisher doesn’t post specific guidelines your MS won’t look like a big pile of ….

Overall Manuscript Basics

Font: 12 point Times New Roman

Font Color: Black

Margins: 1 in – 1.5in on all sides

Title Page

Contact Information: Top left corner, single spaced and left justified. Include the following information:

  • Your full name (not your pen name)
  • Your Address
  • Your Phone Number
  • Your Email address

Title: Centered 1/3 – ½ the way down the page in all CAPS.


Author: Centered 1 double-spaced line below the title (If you use a pen name, use it here)

Example: by Darla G. Denton

Word Count: Centered 1 double-spaced line below your name or top right hand corner of the page.

Example: 70,000 words


Header: Located at either the top left or right of every page except the title page. Include the following:

  • Your Last Name
  • The Book Title
  • Page Number

Example: Denton /Destiny Be Damned / 200

Tip: Pages are numbered continuously with page 1 being the first page AFTER the title page. 

Chapter Titles: Each chapter is started on a new page and put in the center about 1/3 – ½ of the way down from the top and written in all CAPS

Example: CHAPTER 1

Line Spacing: Double-spaced throughout the whole document

Paragraphs: Indent the 1st word of every paragraph 1/2 in. (0.5″).

⇒ Tip: Use the format paragraph feature on your word processor and don’t insert extra lines between paragraphs. 

1st Paragraph: Begin 4-6 lines below the chapter title

Space After Punctuation: 1 space.

Dialogue: Start a new paragraph every time you change speakers

⇒ Tip: Check out Novel-Writing-Help.com for 8 Rules For Writing Dialogue

The End: Double-space and center the word “End” after the the last sentence of your story.


Click on the following to see picture examples of a proper cover page and MS format.

First Manuscript’s – Proper Manuscript Format For a Novel

Marlys Pearson’sHow To Format Your Novel For Submission


MS Word is the most common way to submit a document to a publisher; .doc or .rtf files will work. However, you need to clarify with the submission guidelines on what type of file they can read.


Now that we’ve tackled the basic guidelines for formatting your MS let’s dive into word counts and page lengths.

For the purpose of this article I will be referring to guidelines for Romance and it’s sub genres.

Before we get into the numbers lets talk about why page lengths and word counts matter.

It’s all about the money.

It costs money to print a book. Therefore publishing houses have a guideline of how many words or page lengths they will accept from an unpublished writer vs seasoned author.

The amount of books you’ve had published + the amount of readers you have to buy your books =

the amount of page  and shelf space publishers are willing to risk. 

Books with a higher page  and word count cost more to produce meaning more copies will need to be sold to see a decent profit.

When you are starting out it is very wise to stick to the word and page count guidelines set by the publisher you are looking to pursue.

Word Counts

Below is a list of genres and sub genres with estimated word counts :

  • Short Contemporary Romance: 40,000 – 70,000 words
  • Long Contemporary Series Romance: 70,000 + words
  • Contemporary Single Title Romance: 70,000 + words
  • Short Historical Romance: 40,000 – 95,000 words
  • Long Historical Romance: 95,000 + words
  • Regency Romance: 40,000 – 85,000 words
  • Inspirational Romance: 40,000 + words
  • Paranormal Romance: 40,000 + words
  • Romantic Suspense / Gothic Romance: 40,000 + words
  • Young Adult Romance: 25,000 + words
  • New Adult Romance – 60,000 – 85,000 words

For more information and specific details regarding each genre check out the following:

RWAThe Romance Genre

Literary RejectionsWord Count

Witchita Area Romance Authors (WARA) WritersRomance Genres and Sub-genres

Page Counts

The industry standard is 250 words per page.

Below is a list of general page lengths for romance:

  • Short Contemporary Romance: 160 – 280 pages
  • Long Contemporary Romance: 280 + pages
  • Contemporary Single Title Romance: 280 + Pages
  • Short Historical Romance: 160 – 380 pages
  • Long Historical Romance: 380 + pages
  • Regency Romance: 160 – 340 pages
  • Inspirational Romance: 160 + pages
  • Paranormal Romance: 160 + pages
  • Romantic Suspense / Gothic Romance: 160 + pages
  • Young Adult Romance: 100 + pages
  • New Adult Romance: 240 – 340 pages

Surprise! We aren’t done. I decided to add a bonus part to this article that I’m sure you will appreciate.

Below are links with extensive lists of publishers that handle romance. Listed along side the publishers names are links to their submission guidelines. Enjoy!

Karen FoxList of Publishers

Killer Book MarketingThe Passionate PenRomance Publishers List

A List of 28 Publishers for Erotica and Romance

Stay Tuned

Wednesday @ 9 amWhat Are The Most Popular Genres in Romance and How Do They Compare?

Friday @ 9 amDoes Your Outward Appearance Really Make A Difference?Let's Chat Graphic

  • Do you format your first draft or wait till you’re ready to submit it?
  • Have you had a publishing house or agent ask for something different?
  • Do you have a formatting tip to share? 


What is Body Confidence?

What Is Body Confidence

I’m going to bet that you’ve probably heard about body confidence by now.

Maybe you’ve already read a few blog posts about it, read a news piece or two, or heard one of your favorite celebs talking about it.

But what is it really?

To understand what Body Confidence is we must first understand what Body Image is.

Body Image is the way we SEE our bodies through our eyes and the eyes of society.

Body Confidence is the way we FEEL  about our bodies that is brought on by how we see ourselves and the way others treat us.

What is the big deal about body confidence?

Have you ever had a day where you just FELT like crap? Like you were worthless? Like nothing good has ever or will ever happen to you?

Now, think back on that day. Did you also FEEL like you looked like crap? Did you see yourself in the mirror and THINK, “I’m worthless. No one is going to want anything to do with me because I look like this.”

We’ve all been there. Where a bad hair day or an uncomfortable outfit will ruin your whole day.

Maybe you even heard someone make a negative comment about your appearance and it ended up turning a great day into a horrible one.

Body confidence is important because so much stems off of how we feel about ourselves whether we want to admit or not.

When we feel good about our bodies we:

  • Look happier and healthier
  • Feel happier and healthier
  • Our actual physical health improves
  • We are more willing to be social
  • We are more willing to take chances with our career and education
  • We get along better with our friends and loved ones.

Really, the list could go on forever.

When you lack body confidence you are in a daily battle of self worth. You feel:

  • You look unhappy and outwardly portray negativity
  • You feel unhappy and your body just aches all day long
  • Your actual health is being harmed by the negative thoughts that drown your brain on a constant basis
  • You will do anything to avoid being social
  • You never take an opportunity to advance in your career and education because you feel like it would be pointless
  • You are in constant arguments with your friends and loved ones because they want to help but they cant. Why? Because body confidence is something YOU need to obtain for yourself.

How do you achieve body confidence?

We are born with body confidence.

I know it might not seem like it but we are not born thinking we need to look a certain way to be relevant or to be worthy.

That way of thinking happens over time as societies standards are slowly shoved into our face.

Think about this.

You did not always hate your body.

Something at some point made you think, “My body is not pretty. or My body doesn’t look the way it should or I will never get what I want until my body is perfect.”

On a daily basis we are bombarded with pictures, commercials, newspaper articles, books, songs, and even the comments of strangers or loved ones that we just aren’t good enough. That our bodies aren’t good enough. That unless we change the way we look we will never achieve our dreams.

Industries make billions of dollars every year on our feelings of inadequacy.

So how do you break out of this prison of negativity and find a way to love and appreciate yourself?

Step 1: Realize that everything you see on TV, in newspapers, written in books, in videos and in songs Body Love Mantrahas no control over you.

You have control over your own thoughts. 

Step 2: Sit down and understand WHY you FEEL so negative about yourself and about your body?

Once you understand the WHY you’ll be able to understand the HOW.

Step 3: Realize HOW those negative thoughts and feelings impact your day, your life and your health.

You will be shocked once you see just how much power negative thoughts have over you. 

Step 4: List all the positive things about yourself and your body.

Negative thoughts can’t harm you unlessyou let them. 

Step 5: Surround yourself with positivity. Listen to body positive music, watch videos that talk about body confidence, read books that will help you learn how to appreciate yourself and surround yourself with people who encourage body positivity and body confidence both online and in the real world.

Once you surround yourself with Body Positive People you will begin to understand that you are enough! 

♦ You don’t need to loose weight to love your body

♦ You don’t need to get plastic surgery to love your body

♦ You don’t need to wear the perfect clothes and you don’t need to have the perfect hair

 All you need is the confidence to know that what you have right now is perfect.


Be Obsessed with Body Acceptance

Watch this video about a documentary in the making Embrace: Learning to Love Our Bodies by Taryn Brumfitt at BodyImageMovement.com #ihaveembraced.


Stay Tuned


Monday 9 am How to Format Your MS and What Page Lengths and Words Lengths to Expect in Your Genre”

Wednesday @ 9 am “What Are The Most Popular Genres in Romance and How Do They Compare?”

  • How do you feel about your body image? Do you lack body confidence or do you have abundance of it?Let's Chat Graphic
  • Can you remember what made you first see your body in a negative way?
  • What do you think should be done to help future generations overcome this?