• Marci Belle

How To Live Like A Romance Writer

Updated: Jul 24, 2021

I want to live every moment with the same vehement passion I put into creating my books. Imagine how beautiful life would be if we all did this instead of obsessing over our phones, eyes glued to our screens. We miss out on exhilarating and spontaneous moments because of them. Perhaps we were too preoccupied with the drama of the next election when our soulmate smiled at us in the supermarket line. An opportunity lost.

You must first know, these stories don’t come together effortlessly by simply tapping on a keyboard; nothing could be further from the truth. Turning the incomplete images and voices in our heads into a digestible novel takes skill and an ingrained, insatiable curiosity about everything. A raging thirst for detail we explore by tuning into our five senses.

A Kiss Isn’t Just A Kiss

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It’s the taste of desire, the dancing of tongues or the nibbling of lips. Romance authors write scenes they hope will transport you away from reality and into the character’s experience so you can experience the moment in vivid detail.

When you kiss your sweetheart, notice how their lips feel and how your body is reacting. Tune in every time and see how it improves your connection.

The Way They Touched

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One bright afternoon, I was walking along, about to enter the grim dampness of an underground footpath littered with broken glass. I noticed an attractive couple kissing passionately and openly in the shadows. Nothing in the world could peel my eyes away from the most fervent, seductive kiss I’d ever witnessed. There isn’t a scene in a film that could parallel the sizzling energy emanating from them as I went past.

Luckily, they never took notice of the vigilant voyeur. They were too immersed in their affections. I shamelessly preoccupied myself with how the handsome man’s fingers ran through the woman’s perfect blonde bob and the way she stroked the taut muscles of his bare arms. One couldn’t help but wonder if they were covertly kissing in the shadows because they were in the middle of a heated affair. Intuition, and a writer’s investigative nature, suggested this could be the case. My imagination went wild.

Try couple-watching next time you’re out. It’s harmless. But don’t gossip or giveaway their secrets. Eavesdropping is vital for author research.

The Places We Go


Like most people, authors snap a cornucopia of touristy photographs on vacation. There’s always an interesting angle or backdrop we need to document for our next book. This is an ideal time to conjure up an adventurous spin on love.

I’ve been known to spend twenty minutes framing an old doorway where my lovers will kiss in chapter five. Make each observation intense. Lay in the sand and watch clouds drift by and take in their shapes. What do you see? A castle? A rose? Notice the cracks in the blue paint of the pretty villa.

The world is a three-dimensional experience that follows us every step of the way. Study it with curiosity and carry its beauty in your heart.

On A Whiff

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Think of the times you’ve walked past the local bakery and the scent of fresh bread and pastries hijacked your nose. There isn’t a smell in the world that can evoke so much pleasure and hunger.

Scent plays an important part in framing the scene of a story. Perhaps the character is visiting the Farmer’s Market in summer. What odors are in the air? Is there a scent you associate with a day at the market? Oranges, flowers, or spices?

When an unusual scent arrests you, take in everything around you. Give it a memory and nostalgia will bring you there again.

Food Is Life

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Our taste buds bind with food or drink molecules that send signals to our brain describing whether something is sweet, sour, salty or bland. This is my favorite of the five human senses, and often linger with these descriptions.

I recall the over-zealous reaction I had to the sweetness of the red onions I bought in Crete for a salad I was making with vegetables purchased in a local organic grocery store. We rented an apartment for a week and explored the native ingredients and recipes. I recommend this, it's a wonderful way to immerse oneself in local culture.

I’m sure there are a lot of wrinkled noses, but you have to believe me. The onion was great. When I cut into it, I didn’t shed a single tear. I even waved it in front of my eyes. And nothing. I’m still impressed a year later. Crete is the home of the Mediterranean Diet after all. The sunshine, soil, and the fact that the onions were so fresh, made them incredibly sweet. I’ll stop now.

Perhaps it’s nicer to ponder the mintiness of a kiss or the unique saltiness of your partner’s skin when you slide your tongue along their collarbone.

Do you remember what the first kiss with the love of your life tasted like? Did it taste of wine and cigarettes after a night out? Maybe the kisses are more memorable and satisfying now. First kisses can be clumsy and abrupt.

In the end, there are no rules. Enjoy life. See it the way only you can.

Break the monotony, enjoy everything, and live in the moment.

Article Written by Marci Belle

January 18, 2020

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