Crafting a Paranormal Romance Plot

On my “About” page, it says that I’m working on my first Male/Male Paranormal Romance. That’s true. What it leaves out is that last year I wrote a Paranormal Romance with a non-LGBT main pairing. That book, though it was published (under another pseudonym), didn’t sell a lot of copies. The problem? My suspicion is that the two elements of “paranormal” and “romance” didn’t quite fit together in my book, and potential readers picked up on that.

“It’s not enough for the paranormal and the romance elements to be present – they need to work in harmony.”

I’ve written a lot of paranormal fiction. A lot. I’ve read a lot too. I’ve also worked as an editor on a huge number of romance novels, novellas and short stories, and I’ve dabbled a little in writing them. But when it comes to a paranormal romance book, it’s not enough for those two things to be present – what’s needed is for both the paranormal and the romance to work together, in harmony, as the plot builds to its conclusion.

How do I intend to do that on my new project? Well, I’m a planner. I’ve spent weeks planning and re-planning, without writing a single word. My intention is that the romance between the two main characters will grow naturally out of the paranormal adventure that they’re involved in, so intertwined that one wouldn’t work without the other.

“They should be so completely mixed that they create something entirely new.”

If you’re writing in a genre that combines two or more other genres, you’re creating an alloy, not simply plating one with another. The two elements should be so completely mixed as to create something entirely new that’s not just the sum of its parts. That’s what I forgot when I wrote my book last year, and it’s what I intend to do differently this time around.


Written as a response to the daily prompt: Harmonize.
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