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July, 2012

Character Review in Your Novel

by Bruce L. Cook

At some point, while writing a novel, you reach a point where you start to wrap things up. Here is your chance to conduct a review of characters. (Continued below...)


Why Do Romance Novels Have Such A Strong Fan Base?

by Carmella Borchers



Romance books basically deal with a plot that centers on a love relationship. Romance books should be as captivating as possible to make the reader hooked until the final chapter. Although many find them not fit to be considered a form of literature, the truth is that romantic books are some of the most widely read books in the world.

A recent research into this has shown that over half of the books sold in a period of a decade were categorized as romantic books. This could mean that romance books belong to the biggest niche of best sellers and might even be a profitable venture for any budding novelist.

The data from this research has dispelled some of the myths about Romance Novels. One of them is that these types of books are read by single and desperate ladies. Well with these kinds of figures of those who have bought romance books for the last decade, then the conclusion is yours to make.

But generally this might mean that romance books are read by people from all walks of life, from lawyers, doctors, employed, and the unemployed. Another school of thought argues that romance books are more or less the same. Reading one romantic book to the end is like reading all romance books. They claim that there is a certain formula that is adhered to by the writers of these books. Whilst this might be their own opinion, but the fact remains that there are different type’s romance books in the offering. And it’s all geared towards the fulfilment of all tastes.

Still another school of thought from a church based claim said that women who often read romance books have problem fitting into a real relationship. They say that these ladies will always want their partners to have behaviours that are similar to the characters in romance books, failure to which a breakup might occur. This is according to a recent posting on a church website. They advise women who are addicted to reading romantic books to instead go out and meet new friends or start a new hobby all together free from arousing scenes.

This claim about romance books brought a tremendous reaction on online forums, from romantic books writers, to readers. But for those who might be interested in reading these books, the choice remains theirs. The founder of a romance books website, advised readers of books in this niche that there was nothing wrong with exploration of a different world of relationships, emotional or personal relationships through works of romantic fictions.

A notable reader of romance books who claims that she reads one book every week says that she had never foamed in the mouth because of reading the so called arousing scenes. She also adds that reading to her is an escape brought to life in the fantasy of the brain. Books may be your best friend. People read books for different reasons, maybe to pass time, gaining a deeper understanding of a language or maybe improving their reading skills. This might also apply to the readers of romance books.

Carmella Borcher is the author of this article and is an avid fan of Romance Novels.

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Character Review ... (continued)

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Look back on your characters and find some you have basically "left hanging" without closure. (Others just had brief but necessary appearances and don't necessarily require such resolution.) In this step you are viewing characters as resources which may or may not add strength to your conclusion.

This kind of review is particularly useful as you approach the completion of the novel. Despite your best crafted plans, you consider whether certain character(s) could be brought to bear in your conclusion. The others can remain as they are, with no further action.

Whatever you do, the inclusion of such characters at the end must support your purpose. For example, in a story I'm writing about a problem in Afghanistan, I have a perfect place for an American anthropologist I featured in the first chapters. She could easily and emotionally lead the conclusion to my story. However, since it is not at all my purpose to have an American solve an Afghan problem, I shall not include her in the conclusion.   

As a caveat, it’s true that he story should resolve the action for all characters. In my example above, the American anthropologist has already completed her function in the story kin the last part of the novel. In the character review, on the other hand, we are considering whether to bring a character back at the ending, for any strong element from the early parts can have great impact when combined with other elements to create a strong ending.
At its most basic level, a novel is a story and a story is about people. As authors, it’s our responsibility to keep track of the characters we create and give them the strength they deserve.

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Publishing New Writers,

July, 2012 (no. 1307)


Dr. Bruce L. Cook
7337 Grandview Ct.
Carpentersvville, IL  60110

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