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Button
02-04-2006, 07:06 PM
What is the popular point of view for suspense romance? I've seen it both in first and third person and I'm sort of at a loss as to which way to take this one I'm writing now.

I'm used to writing in first person and I've been hearing it is harder to get those types published. Any ideas?

Sakamonda
02-04-2006, 07:42 PM
The ULTIMATE classic of romantic suspense---Daphne du Maurier's REBECCA----is told from the first person. So I don't think it's out of the question, but you have to do a very good job writing it in first person in order for it to sell. I think the problem is, a lot of people who write in first person do a very poor job of it.

These days, the romances I read in the first person are almost always the wacky comedies. The straight romances or the darker ones are usually third person (but mostly from the heroine's point of view). I think that's what the pubs seem to want. Most of the Harlequin/Silhouette lines require third-person narrative.

Button
02-04-2006, 10:50 PM
Thank you Sakamonda!

Speaking of point of view, I have an old manuscript I've been meaning to pull out and take another look at, and it is from the hero's point of view. I have not read any romance book that is from the man's angle but I wondered if anyone else had.

Sakamonda
02-05-2006, 12:03 AM
It is extremely rare to see a romance novel told exclusively from the hero's point of view. Usually, it is a mix of the heroine and hero (heavier on the heroine), and more often exclusively the heroine.

Nora Roberts has written a few that have more of a hero's point of view, but, hey---she's Nora Roberts, she can do whatever she wants. I don't think it's a good idea for someone just starting out to try this, as it's not what the publishers seem to look for.

Cathy C
02-05-2006, 12:17 AM
I think both first and third person are equally purchased. It all depends on the story to be told. There are actually quite a few romance novels told from the male first person POV, including our own book, Hunter's Moon (http://www.ciecatrunpubs.com/hunterchapter1.htm). Linda Howard also wrote one at the same time as ours came out (but can't remember the name), and as Sakamonda says, Nora has done a few.


Just trust your instincts and don't try to play to what you think the market wants. If the story resonates, it'll sell---regardless of the POV. :)

Susan Gable
02-05-2006, 06:33 PM
One fairly recent book that I really enjoyed was told in first-person, alternating the heroine and hero's POV. It was called The Man in the Mask by Christine Rimmer. She did a great job of telling the story that way. When I first started reading it, I was a little disappointed because it opened in the heroine's POV, first-person, and I thought, awwww, I'm going to miss out on the hero's POV.

Then I got to the chapter where we switched and I was excited.

Each character had such a distinct "voice" in their POV that I never got confused as to whose head I was in. This book is an excellent example of doing something a little different with POV, and doing it well.

Susan G.

Sakamonda
02-05-2006, 07:49 PM
FWIW, all my romances are either told from the first person (romantic comedy) or third person exclusively from the heroine's point of view (straight category romance). I haven't written a mixed third-person POV yet.

Susan Gable
02-07-2006, 12:51 AM
FWIW, all my romances are either told from the first person (romantic comedy) or third person exclusively from the heroine's point of view (straight category romance). I haven't written a mixed third-person POV yet.

My categories are deep 3rd-person, and I usually have 3 character POVs. Hero, Heroine, and generally there's a secondary who gets his/her own POV.

Of course, I write the long categories, so I have room to do that. In short category, it's generally frowned upon (notice I say GENERALLY. It's not nec. a "rule.") to have anything more than the hero and heroine's POV.

Desire recently said that they want their stories to be more in the heroine's POV. Like at least 60/40 split between heroine and hero.

Susan G.