Laura Haley-McNeil

4/28/19, Ending the Romance Novel

Hello, Everyone!

Recently, someone made a comment to me about ending the romance novel. Sometimes, the novel ends too quickly. The reader would like to spend time with the characters and see how they are with each other now they’ve finally admitted they are madly in love and can’t live without each other. Should everything be tied up quickly with the hero and heroine riding off into the sunset or should more time be spent showing how in love they are now that they’ve finally admitted their love for each other?


I remember hearing a similar complaint regarding fairytales. The prince and his bride marry and live happily ever after, but what happens after that? I was happy imagining that harp music played and birds sang everywhere they went. Heck, he’s a prince! It’s not like he has to sit in an interviewer’s office and sweat. But what about 5 years later? Or 10 years later? Does he snore at night and play golf on Saturdays while she hustles the kids to ballet and soccer practice? What about those sexy nighties that have shifted to the bottom of her pajama drawer?


I admit that once the hero and heroine have reached their happily-ever-after, I’m ready for another book, enjoying the new conflict between a different couple and seeing how they work through that. But the more I thought about showing the H/h in their relationship after their admission of love, the more I liked the idea. Yes, they’re happy, but now she’s pregnant with the number two child and still creating business events that she hopes will wrap up before she delivers and he’s in the garage finishing a bedstead for the 1st child who’s excited about sleeping in a big kid’s bed and happy to donate the crib to baby sister.


The possibilities are endless. Even though conventional wisdom says to end the story quickly once the climax has been reached, maybe it would be nice to spend more time with these characters because they’re no longer struggling with their emotions. What are they like now that they’ve worked through their angst and can readily admit they are in love?

What do you think? Does the story end too quickly or are you ready to move on to the next story? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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Have a wonderful and blessed week!