Perfect recipe for literary romance

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The Indian book market was always a favourable ground for international romantic novels. However, in recent times the readers have been steadily warming up to desi love stories penned by Indian authors. A new crop of authors are now walking the love route. And for the first time, the romance genre is wearing a best-seller label in the Indian publishing industry.
In the past many Indian writers had tried their luck in romance writing but couldn’t hit the bull’s eye, so what is this new-found recipe of romance that’s proving a mega success?
Kapish Mehra, MD, Rupa & Co., opines that there are multiple factors behind the success of a romantic fiction. He says, “The growth in Indian fiction writers in past years can be credited to three important factors — growth of three generations of English speaking readers, increase in number of urban audience and light-hearted entertainment.”
Faraaz Kazi, author of Truly, Madly, Deeply, calls his book a semi-literary romance fiction that is not too difficult to understand for the majority of Indian readers. Talking about marketing the book, he informs, “Post Chetan Bhagat’s success in romance fiction, there was a phase when everyone wanted to write their own love story. It was very challenging for writers to stand out in the crowd because after a point there were too many stories with same storyline. Later, publishers started adopting innovative strategies to market such authors and the sale of romantic novels saw an unprecedented growth. The pricing of these books also played a very important role and now the market is so vast that many companies even scout for writers to produce in-house romantic tales.”
Advaita Kala, author and script writer, feels that the new-age readers want to read more indigenous tales. She says, “Confidence level and presentation skills of Indian writers in the segment have gone up. There has been a rise in number of readers. In addition, readers relate more to indigenous stories with local flavour.”
Young author Anjali Kirpalani, who wrote Never Say Never and is now writing her next romantic novel, feels that new-age romance fiction is about happy escapism. She says, “The recipe for an ideal romantic fiction would be about a central character that starts from a low point in career or relationship and eventually follows his\her dreams and reaches a happy conclusion.”

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