Romance writing rule #4621 – Never let your Secondary Characters undermine your Erstwhile Hero.

Posted on July 8, 2014

Romance writing rule #4621 – Never let your Secondary Characters undermine your Erstwhile Hero.

It’s no secret that I love to explore family dynamics when writing series romance. First came the Bennett family. Then came the Wests – two brothers and two sisters – I’m still finishing the Wests (there’s one brother left to write). I’ve just started a new family series – three brothers this time, with a family name of Jackson. As usual, I’ve started with the youngest.

The Honeymoon TrapBeing the youngest brother in a hero-driven trilogy is challenging. The youngest son doesn’t have the same intrinsic status as the first born (or even the second born) son. And when the first born, and second born, are sharing those first few pages with your hero – potential heroes, all of them – the going can get a little rough for the baby of the family. Which brings me to romance writing rule number #4621. Never let your secondary characters undermine your erstwhile hero.

I break this rule a lot. And then I shuffle up and pay my dues. You break it, you fix it. Meaning that at some point in the story, the baby of the Jackson family is going to have to get his alpha on.

The Honeymoon Trap starts with a computer gaming scene between three brothers and a young woman. The oldest brother is Cutter. Middle brother is Caleb. Our erstwhile hero here is Eli, the youngest. The heroine’s name is Zoey. Within the game, Eli’s character is marrying Zoey’s character for a boost (more powers, better recovery time etc.). Eli’s brothers, being older brothers, can’t help but have some fun.

‘We should get this wedding underway. I love a good wedding. All rise.’ Cutter had suddenly developed a lisp worthy of a television cardinal. ‘Dearly Beloved. We are gathered here today to witness the blessed union of this man, and this woman, and… who’s got the rings?’

‘There’s really only one ring,’ Caleb intoned. ‘And I don’t think it’s available.’

‘We don’t need rings,’ Fuzzy said. ‘We don’t even need a ceremony.’

‘No ceremony?’ Cutter sounded deeply offended. ‘At all? What kind of wedding is this?’

‘Eli, how old are these brothers of yours? Have they hit puberty yet?’

‘We’re his older brothers,’ injected Caleb helpfully.

‘So how old are you?’ Fuzzy didn’t wait for his reply. ‘Good grief, I’m marrying a two-year-old.’

‘He’s twenty-six.’ This from Cutter. ‘Are we ready? Because, seriously, our boy here’s so shy with women that this could well be his only chance at heavenly matrimony. All rise—

‘Be right back.’ Eli pushed away from the console with undue haste. He wasn’t panicking, much, he just… beer. He needed another beer, never mind the recently opened bottle sitting right there on the table. He needed pretzels and more beer. Possibly new brothers. Preferably no brothers, except that they were going to help him put a wall full of windows in this place this weekend so maybe he could disown them after that. He plucked a beer from the fridge and a bag of pretzels from the cupboard and took his sweet time returning to the game. He put on his headset, took a deep breath and reminded himself that it was only a game. ‘Am I married yet?’

‘Yes!’ Zoey sounded a little desperate. ‘It’s done. There was cake. Is anyone beside me ready to play the game?’

The Honeymoon Trap is available from Amazon at a launch price of $0.99c for 2 days only, then it reverts to a regular price of $2.99.

Available now from Amazon.


Share This

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Love it so much I shared the Amazon link w/ some of my gamer friends. <3

  2. Opened your newsletter at lunch time, read about this new book and bought it straight away. Have just finished reading it, great read and, as a person living with a number of chronic illnesses and have done for over 40 years, it was great to see a leading lady with health problems. They exist in life and having it appear in your book just made her more real. Now all I have to do is wait for the other 2 books as well as Jared’s story..Really need you to write three books at the same time!! Or maybe just bide my time.

    • Joan, I’m glad you liked the story, and especially the heroine. Always lovely to hear. I too would love to write faster!

  3. Deb Salonen

    Way fun! Made me want to read it so I just bought it. Now…to find the time. All of the Honeymoon books are so fun. Happy days!


    • Thanks, Deb. I was in geek heaven while writing it (could be I’m bent that way to begin with).

  4. kimberlyindy

    I just bought it and can’t wait to read it!

  5. Loved this book!

  6. This is such a fun book

  7. oops, I meant great excerpt! I do know how to spell :)

  8. great exerpt

Site by Jennifer Wu