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Advice from the Archives: 5 Things Romantic Conflict Provides

In today’s post from our Archives, we share the many benefits of creating romantic conflict, a key building block of great romance!

We editors strive to relay the importance of romantic conflict. After reading umpteenthousand books, we just know that the key to long-lasting romance novel love is the delicious brewing of angst between your hero and heroine. I mean, things are never perfect in romance, are they? To make this point more clearly, here’s five reasons why romantic conflict fuels the relationship in your story.

1. Without conflict, your hero and heroine would spend 250 pages doing this…

The Notebook - Soulmate GIF | Couples, I love you animation, How to fall  asleep

I mean, good for them, but well, I have laundry to do. Give me conflict before the HEA! Make them fight for the happy ending.

2. Conflict builds character. You know that annoying adage that hardship builds character? There is truth to that. Conflict adds layers to your hero and heroine. If they had led harmonious lives, why would we want to read about them? They would be writing self-help books telling us how to lead perfect lives. Right?

3. Conflict creates a bond between you and the character. We all go through stuff. How great is it to see someone else suffer and know that you’re not alone? I adore heroines who truly never expect to get more than what they already have. And those good heroines go through a lot and they are fighters. Doesn’t that make you want her to have an HEA?

4. Conflict adds richness to the story. Without it, you would have, well, not a romance novel that we could sell. The landscape would be colorless, instead of bursting in glorious shades of anxiety, courage, and redemption!

5. With conflict, the romantic payoff is huge! Those warm fuzzies you feel are even fuzzier when the hero and heroine overcome their resistance and bond like magnets.

So go out there and torture your characters. Give them a big can of angst and three bottles of determination against all odds. Your readers will thank you and ask for your next book!