Erotic Romance Novella Plot Template
Genre: Erotic Romance
Projected Word Count: 20,000 - 25,000
Number of Chapters: 10
Template Length: 14 pages, 4,000 words
Title: <sexy sounding>
- There are a lot of title options and what’s hot will change over time. Check the Amazon Top 100 romance books. Look for short, steamy books to see what the current titles look like. One-word titles like “Crave” or “Dominate” might be in season some months, while in other months titles with phrases like “A Scandalous Christmas” are more popular. You can also use evergreen titles like “Dirty Professor”.
Series Name: <Something interesting>
- Always, always write in a series.
- Make the series name unique and sexy sounding, but don’t get too creative. You want to hit the reader over the head with it. Go with something like: Hot Vegas Nights, A Bad Boy Secret Baby Series, Forbidden Professors, etc.
- If you can use a well-known trope as your series hook, even better. However, you do run the risk of turning off readers who don’t like certain tropes. (E.g. Daddy’s Best Friend series are super popular right now, but some readers might be turned off by the trope.)
- Forbidden love is one of the most common tropes
- g. The boss’ daughter, my brother’s best friend, the reclusive stranger.
- Forced Proximity is a really helpful trope to use to keep the characters together. In a novella length story, you don’t have a lot of time for them to be apart. They should be together in almost every scene.
- Hot Sex!
- It can be kinky or vanilla, but it must be hot. Unusual positions, locations, the fear of being caught, etc. You have a ton of options to explore your character’s sexuality.
- Generally written in first person past or present tense, but some authors also write in third person past or present tense. Personally, I like to write these in first person present.
- To keep the outline simple, I’m using a FMC and a MMC, but obviously you can have two MMCs, two FMCs, or any other combination of genders.
Sample Blurb Outline - The file will include a sample blurb outline with an example.
Characters - The file will also include the MMC as well as other characters to consider.
<First Last Name> (FMC)
- Innocent or naughty? You get to choose.
- Falling in love would mean <some terrible consequence>
- g. He’s her college professor. She can’t fall in love with him because the scandal would destroy his career.
- g. He’s her brother’s best friend. She can’t fall in love with him without risking her relationship with her brother.
- If she’s naughty, then she has less hesitation about hooking up with the guy. She might even convince herself that she’s only doing it for the sex. She has more of a closed heart, so she really tries to resist falling in love with him.
- If she’s nice, she tries to resist him, but he’s so hot, and/or convincing, that she throws caution to the wind and hooks up with him anyway. She feels guilty after the sex and vows never to do it again… but she can’t help herself. Being with him awakens her deliciously naughty side and once it’s unleashed, she can’t control her feelings for him.
- Younger than the hero.
- Generally early 20s, but it can vary.
Scene 1 (Heroine POV)
Goal – Avoid the MMC.
Complication(s) – (NOTE: Novellas move super-fast, so it’s helpful if the characters already know each other when the story begins. You could have strangers meet, but it will be harder to create instant conflict. You would need a darn good reason why they can’t act on their lusty feelings. The fact that they don’t know each other is not strong enough conflict to carry a novella. But there are ways around this too. E.g. MMC and FMC hook up in a bar. She doesn’t know that he’s going to be her new boss. He does. Instant conflict.) The FMC has been trying to avoid the MMC as much as possible. She’s in lust with him, but she can’t be with him for some reason. He’s forbidden, but he’s so hot. She’s dripping wet for him and can’t stop thinking about riding his cock. She’s never been this turned on in her entire life, but she can’t be with him for a very good reason. (E.g. He is her professor and the university has a policy against professor/student relationships. E.g. He’s her brother’s best friend and her brother would kill the MMC if he touched her.)
Choice – Should she try to resist interacting with him, or will she let desire override her instinct to avoid him?
Consequences – She can’t avoid him forever. She runs into him and they flirt but she holds back just enough to keep from crossing the line between them. Then something occurs which makes it impossible for them to ignore each other. (E.g. The professor asks her to meet him at his office hours. She considers ignoring his request. She ends up going to office hours and he asks her to be his research assistant for a project he’s doing on alternative sexual practices. E.g. Her brother is getting married. His best friend (MMC) is the Best Man at the wedding. She is the Maid of Honor and they have to work together on tasks related to the wedding.) Now she can’t avoid him anymore and she knows she’s going to get into all kinds of trouble if she’s not careful.
POV Character's Feelings – She’s in lust with the MMC but doesn’t want to act on her feelings. The MMC is forbidden and she’s not willing to risk <the stakes> in order to satisfy her lust. (E.g. She’s not willing to risk the possibility that her professor will lose his job in order to satisfy her lust.)
Scene 1 (Hero POV)
Goal – Try to ignore his overwhelming lust for the FMC.
Complication(s) – The MMC is forced into a close proximity situation with the FMC. (E.g. He’s the professor and she’s his assistant. They’re working on the research project together in his office. E.g. He’s her brother’s best friend. They are at the catering business where they are working on last minute changes to the wedding party’s menu.) He wants to bend her over the nearest table or drag her into an empty room and fuck her brains out. He knows she was flirting with him in the last chapter, but he also knows why they can never cross that line and start any kind of relationship. But he really wants her.
Choice – Should he ignore the consequences and make a move?
Consequences – He’s holding back as much as he can until he can’t take it anymore. He flirts with her more intensely than in the last chapter. He finds a way to “innocently” touch her. (E.g. Professor – Their hands brush as they both reach for the office door at the same time. E.g. Brother’s Best Friend – He teasingly feeds her hors d’oeuvres and she licks his fingers.) This is the first time they have ever touched. The contact is electric, and he wants so much more. He hates being in this situation, but he knows he can’t have her. This makes him want her even more. She’s the ultimate forbidden fruit.
POV Character's Feelings – He’s in lust with the FMC but doesn’t want to act on his desire. The FMC is forbidden and he’s not willing to risk the potential costs in order to satisfy his lust. But he is barely holding it together and he can’t risk trying to push things just a little bit by touching her.
END SAMPLE - But in the actual outline, you get a chapter by chapter breakdown.