Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Writer's Wednesday: Jacqueline Diamond on Writing

Prolific Harlequin American Author Jacqueline Diamond shares some of her top tips for writing a series romance
Those of us who write series or category romances sometimes run into people who’ve never read our books and who assume that the clich├ęs must be true. Surely we “churn” out these stories, using simple formulas and flowery prose.
As a writing teacher and as an author who’s learned from every one of my 90 published novels, I only wish it were that easy. Not by a long shot!
The heart of any romance is the deep emotional bond between hero and heroine. This translates into a connection to the reader as well. If I don’t feel the emotions, you won’t either. There are no short cuts or tricks. Moreover, there must be real differences that divide these people, not simple misunderstandings or petty jealousy, but issues of trust and character that could drive people apart in real life, too.
In a way, I’m lucky when it comes to arguing with people who look down on category. Having also sold mysteries (Danger Music, The Eyes of a Stranger), a thriller (Echoes) and a fantasy novel (Shadowlight), I can honestly say that the short romances aren’t easier. They’re just different.
The research must be genuine, too. For my Safe Harbor Medical miniseries, I look into the latest developments in fertility treatments. In addition, a close friend who’s a nurse reviews my medical scenes. The Detective’s Accidental Baby also draws on my news experience reporting on police, and was read by a friend who’s a retired sheriff’s investigator.
But when you sit down with one of my books, my behind-the-scenes work should simply vanish. My goal is for you to get lost in a story and fall in love along with the characters. I like to think that the doubters and naysayers would do the same. Wouldn’t that surprise them?
The author of 90 novels—75 of them for Harlequin—Jacqueline Diamond has also issued a book of tips for writers called How to Write a Novel in One (Not-so-easy) Lesson, available for e-readers such as Nook and Kindle. Her February Harlequin American Romance, The Detective’s Accidental Baby, is the seventh book in her Safe Harbor Medical miniseries. Jackie has received a Career Achievement Award from Romantic Times Magazine and has twice finaled for the Rita Award. She is a former Associated Press reporter in Los Angeles.
Synopsis of The Detective’s Accidental Baby:Nurse Erica Benford may work with fertility patients, but she has no interest in babies. Then an impulsive affair with a detective leads to an unplanned pregnancy – along with the discovery that the man she trusted was secretly investigating her. The Detective's Accidental Baby is available wherever good boks or ebooks are sold.
To learn more about Jacqueline and her books visit her website
 or follow @jacquediamond (Twitter) for writing tips


  1. It is so true that emotions are a big part of category romance. If the author can engage the reader emotionally, they have done your job.

    I am always interested in reading writing tips. As far as I am concerned, I can't get enough of them.

  2. I'm just a reader but i wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your books. I read about 250 books a year and mostly romance. Although some of the basic story lines are the same, it never ceases to amaze me how different the stories are.