Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Expect the Unexpected with Bob Stewart

On February 15, 2014, ACFW's Writers On The Storm welcomed multi-published author, and our very own member, Bob Stewart. Since it was February and so close to Valentine’s Day, we asked Bob to speak on the subject of romance from a man’s perspective. Twenty-two people showed up to hear Bob speak, including his son, Bob III and grandson, Bob IV! 

 According to Bob, many men think of romance the way singer, Dean Martin summed it up in his famous song, Wham Bam Thank You Ma’am. But that is not Bob's philosophy. He thinks romance should be special; that it should be doing something completely unexpected for someone you love. 

Tips for writing male characters in a romance:

1. Male characters should have a ‘tell’ like in the game of poker. A ‘tell’ is a motion that reveals what’s going on behind the poker face. It could be something he’s noticeably uncomfortable with, or a physical movement he performs. 

2. Romantic gestures should be ‘over the top.’ Think of Dustin Hoffman in the Graduate when he storms into the church wedding and screams for actress, Katharine Ross. 

3. Bob said to always, ‘expect the unexpected’ in writing romance. Flee the expected cliche gestures and embrace the spontaneous. As an example, Bob gave each of the ladies present at the meeting a yellow rose. <3

Additional pictures by chapter photographer, Kathrese McKee:

If you were at the meeting, please share with us: What was the main thing you learned or took away from the meeting that you will use in your fiction?


  1. I took away that the chapter is composed of dynamite women with a great sense of humor.

  2. I learned that our very own Bob Stewart is quite the accomplished author. I had no idea he had such an extensive journalistic background! He did an amazing job speaking to our group. I could have listened for another hour. My take away is that men are complex creatures and I need to put more layers into my male characters. I also learned that Kathrese McKee is an awesome photographer who never gets her picture taken. Next time, one of us needs to get her picture!!

    1. Maybe we can get her to shoot a selfie.

      And I've told Bob that he my pocket speaker in case someone cancels last minute. We all want to hear about his journalism days!