Online: Zoom

There's Only One Bed: Writing Romance

6 Thursdays from 6:00pm to 9:00pm (EST), starting June 23rd.
Online: Zoom
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Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
12 seats max
Only 1 spot left!

What is the secret ingredient to witty banter? How do you pull off a believable love triangle? What role do sex scenes play in characterization and plot? Whether you’re working on a romance book or you just want to uplevel a romantic subplot in your story, this course will help you define your characters, their desires, and their relationships.

Over six weeks, we’ll explore romance tropes and how to use them or subvert them effectively, how to improve dialogue through strengthening character desires, and how to write intimate scenes that connect the characters to their larger arc and world. Each week, we’ll focus on a different aspect of romance––like using description effectively in romantic scenes, creating purposeful and complex plot situations, dialogue, characterization and relationships, and emotional beats––and read examples of well-written romantic scenes from authors such as Bolu Babalola, Kate Stayman-London, Alyssa Cole, Courtney Milan, Jenny Han, Sierra Simone, and others. We'll study romance beyond heteronormative tropes and include queerness, asexuality, different body types, and neurodivergence in our discussions. Weekly writing exercises will help you apply what you learn to your own work, and each writer will have two scene workshops with feedback from the rest of the class.

You will come away from the class with detailed character notes, outline ideas for longer works, scene-level checklists and exercises, and feedback on two scenes (or one scene + 1 revision) from your work in progress.

Please Note: Class will not meet on July 28th.

Class Format

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting!

Scholarship Information

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.

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Marcella Haddad
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Previous Students Say

  • "Generative"
  • "Supportive Environment"
  • "Great for Newbies"
  • "Diverse Reading Assignments"


  • Generate New Work
  • Study Published Writing
  • Craft Lessons
  • Homework
  • In-Class Writing
  • Workshop


  • The Novel
  • Short Fiction

Commitment Level



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