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Managing Emotions

The book hangover…

You know that feeling when a book is over and there isn’t another one in the series? That’s what we are talking about today. It’s tough growing so connected to the characters the authors have created just to have it all pulled out from under you with the simple words THE END. As a reader of romance I have struggled with this for years, which is typically why I am quick to pick up the next book. If I can get my mind off missing the last one with a new on then it’s a win. But what happens when you are the author? Do they feel the same way after writing a book?

As I began writing my series it was just for my own enjoyment. Now as I am revising and editing books to get them out for all of you, I have really focused on character development. This element of writing romance is one of the most important pieces to the puzzle. Without characters who grow, your book falls flat. In book three, Unbreakable I am writing the story of Avery and Drew. You meet them in books one and two however their true story is now being told.

Many authors will refer to the character voices that speak to them. Yes, I know it makes us all sound a bit crazy but it’s true. My characters talk to me when it’s good and when it’s bad. Avery and Drew have a rough time settling in to their new relationship and as the story progresses it can really make managing emotions tough! Now, all of my books end in a Happily Ever After so I know they will work it out, but when you are so invested in what will happen next it’s not easy. I’ve had to come up with some ways to manage the emotional rollercoaster that is writing and reading.

Somethings to try…

  1. Take a break – At the end of a good book or after a large revision of a particularly emotional scene, I take a break and jump back into the real world. It’s hard to be sad when you have a husband looking for dinner or a child pulling on your pant leg.
  2. Read something happy – This is a big one for me. I am a lover of dark romance and sometimes those books can be pretty heavy. I may stick a light and happy novella in between dark romance books. This is always helpful in keeping my mind set right.
  3. Talk to other authors and readers – Misery loves company… and so does ecstatic joy. Sometimes the best thing to do is talk about the book you read or the scene you wrote with someone who can understand. WARNING: That person is not your husband who doesn’t read romance. (Trust me). There are reader groups, writer groups and communities of people out there who would love to talk about the latest book you’ve read. Use them if you don’t have someone in your daily life to chat with.

Managing emotions is a difficult task on a regular basis. Many of us romance readers thrive on the ups and downs our characters experience. We read for the highs and lows and we love them. It’s just important to remember that if it’s too much to take a step back once in a while. I promise you, your characters will be there when you return.

Happy Reading.

-Nikki Rome

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