In this very informative post on the Writer’s Digest site, romance author Linda Goodnight discovered, once she submitted a story proposal to her editors, that her story was not romance but women’s fiction.
In this post, Women’s Fiction or Romance? The Differences, and 5 Reasons Why They Matter, Goodnight explores the differences between the genres.
As the author points out, there is often confusion between the two genres because women’s fiction may contain romantic elements, or even a romance as one driving factor of the story.
The important distinction is that it is not the main driving force. In women’s fiction, the central plot surrounds the emotional journey of the main female protagonist(s), and the reader should accompany this character in her personal growth across the timespan of the novel.
Romance should have a Happily Ever After, whereas that is not expected in Women’s Fiction – although there should be a sense of hope at the novel’s conclusion.
Linda Goodnight does an excellent job of classifying the differences between the two genres, and helps clear up some confusion. Happy reading and writing to all – across genres.