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The romance novella: Hot or not?

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Whether you’ve got a long commute or an afternoon waiting for your doctor’s appointment, chances are you’ve brought out your smartphones to find something – anything – to do while you wait.

How about reading an entire romance novel in the time it takes you to get your hair colored?

Enter the exciting world of the romance novella. Short enough to read in just an hour or so, but yet hot enough to curl your hair. Sound good? Then listen up.

Goodreads offers an entire list of romance novellas to read, all 50K words or less. You might think pfft, these are indie authors and just can’t write an entire book. Take a look again. Courtney Milan, Kresley Cole and Lisa Kleypas are a few of the authors featured on the list.

Heroes and Heartbreakers gives us a short but sweet list of historical romance novellas. Julia Quinn, Mary Balogh and Eloisa James are a few of the authors listed.

Romance Writer’s of America even recognizes the romance novella with a category for their famous RITA awards.

Why are these authors penning such short novels? First and foremost, it’s fun.

Writing long books takes well, a long time. In between writing their fabulous full-length novels, your favorite authors take a break and write a novella to introduce their series characters, or pen a novella that’s part of an anthology to introduce you to like-minded authors.

To the author, it’s a short and fast book, one that can introduce new characters into an older series, or finish the love story between two secondary characters they couldn’t quite let go. Some introduce a new story line entirely with never-before-seen characters to test out a new series idea.

To the reader, it’s a chance to read your favorite author’s latest book, all in the time it takes you to wait for soccer practice to finish, or to find a new author and see if her style is to your liking.

The best part? You don’t get short-changed reading a novella. There’s still the chemistry between the hero and heroine, the spicy moments that make your heart pound and the happily ever after that leaves you with a smile on your face. All in the time it takes to wait for the pizza delivery guy to show.


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