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You don't need sex to have a romance novel. Look at Inspirational romance. A romance is two people (unless a menage or more) where the romance between them is the main component of the story. Think of it as if you took the romance out there wouldn't be a story. If you could take out the romance and the story stands, it isn't a romance. Romance readers also expect a happily ever after (HEA) or at least a happy for now (HFN) ending to the story.
 

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DDark said:
I'm hoping some writers can offer their advice:

My Mageri series is a blend of Urban Fantasy with Paranormal Romance, so I labeled it "Urban Fantasy Romance". I ran into a bit of a snag with my novella, "Closer", because it's paranormal with romance, but no sex. I had to label it paranormal romance. The problem is: Most readers associate PNR with sex. A lot of the series books I've read are basically a hot and heavy love story with graphic scenes. I really don't know how to label the novella without misleading the consumer, and I sure don't want to spell it out for them.

I've been thinking about this because I've written another book which may become a series. It feels like a contemporary romance, but it's set in the paranormal world. It's lighthearted, bittersweet, romantic, and in some parts... sexy. It is not a dark read, and it is not centered around sex anymore than my Mageri series is. I'm concerned about what may happen if I label it paranormal romance. It IS paranormal. It IS romance. Can I get away with contemporary paranormal romance? (Is there such a thing?) But then, what does that suggest? ::)

I may be overthinking this, but how you label your book sets the expectation for the reader. I wouldn't want someone diving into a book thinking it's erotic PNR when it's milder. Does anyone out there write books like these which are romance novels, but are light on the sex? I can rarely find books that deviate from the genre formulas, and I realize they're always going to be subject to criticism because of it.
I think you're safe with paranormal romance without sex. If it's romance, people are mainly looking for romance. If it's erotica on the other hand, betta deliver the goods.
 

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If you're concerned, you could always label your book as a 'sweet' paranormal romance. Readers would automatically know that means it's a clean romance.
 

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Call it "sweet paranormal romance" and you should be okay. You might even gain some readers who prefer their romance free of explicit sex.
 
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