Romance Writing I
See also:
Fiction Guide
Romance Writing II

Romance Writing II is a 10-week workshop, which includes lectures, exercises, and the critiquing of student projects. The prerequisite is Romance Writing I, or the equivalent; Level II courses work best when students know the fundamentals and have experience with the workshop process.  Farther down, you can view a syllabus for this course.

What’s more addictive than romance? Perhaps romance novels. They account for a hefty portion of all fiction paperback sales, with many millions of readers worldwide experiencing the thrills and heartbreaks of these ever-appealing stories. For the aspiring writer, there is ample opportunity to publish in this field.

To write successful romance novels, you must marry the skills of a fiction writer with a thorough understanding of the genre. Here you will learn about the various types of romance novels and their special requirements, as well as fiction craft and how to market your work.

Whether you seek to write historical or contemporary, sassy or suspenseful, we’ll show you how to write romance novels readers will fall in love with.

About Romance Writing
Romance Writing II

I would not hesitate to recommend this course to anyone who is serious about a writing career.

George Strout



The “romance” genre does not refer to any fictional work that contains romance; rather, it refers to novels that are usually part of established romance “lines.”

You may also work on a “romance” novel in a Fiction I or (at the advanced level) Novel II First Draft or Novel II Critique, or one of our other genre courses: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery.

If you’re working on a YA novel, you may take a Fiction/Novel course, or a “genre” course, or you may take a Children’s Book course, where the full spectrum of children’s books will be covered. 

Upcoming Classes

Check back soon. You'll likely see options when we finish our next schedule.


This course helps you sharpen your skills at the romance genre and work toward completion of a romance novel. Writers often repeat Romance II to continue their projects. Course components:
     Workshopping of student projects (each student presenting work three times)

Week 1
Getting Started: The bones of a romance. Structuring a story. Scenes and chapters. Beginnings. Apt details. Narrative flow. Creative rule-breaking.

Week 2
Planning & Outlining: Developing plot/conflict. Plotting techniques. Outlines.

Week 3
Conflict & Plot: Conflict—problem, solution, tension. Strengthening the conflict. Backstory and hidden story. Subplots and secondary characters. Plausibility and coincidence. Cause and effect.

Week 4
Things that Stump the Best of Us: Boring backstory. Ponderous pacing. Troublesome transitions.

Week 5
Battle of the Sexes: Exploring a multitude of ways in which men and women are (generally) different.

Week 6
Love Scenes: Sweet to spicy. How much sex? Satisfying love scenes. Things to avoid.

Week 7
Writing a Series: Types of series. Building a world. Pros and cons of creating a series.

Week 8
Writing the Synopsis: The importance of a synopsis. Synopsis vs. outline. Creating a great synopsis.

Week 9
Traditional Publishing: Agents. Creating the perfect pitch. The submission process. Getting an offer. Contracts. The publishing process. The professional writer.

Week 10
Independent Publishing: Types of independent publishing. Editing. Formatting. Cover design. E-books. Printed books. Marketing and promotion.

Note: Content may vary among individual classes.