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Does a romance novel beat in your creamy, heaving bosom? Can you envision a hero whose sinewy arms could take a woman to the highest apex of pleasure—or tear her limb from limb? The genre of romantic fiction has exploded since the days of virgin governesses, and today’s books are written for every taste and at every level of explicitness. Romantic Times magazine lists novels by theme, including the time-tested—amnesia, doctors and nurses, male-order brides, and women disguised as men—and the newfangled—time travel, psychic abilities, and the intriguing “romances with animals.” This isn’t some small publishing niche: RT reviews more than 150 new novels per month. Authors Courtney Henke, Karen Alarie, and Julie Moffett Czechowski, and therapist Diane Perkins will teach you how to build characters, write synopses, and master the bread and butter of the genre—sexual tension—at an all-day workshop sponsored by the Washington Romance Writers from 10:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. at the Reston Library, 11925 Bowman Towne Drive, Reston. Free. (410) 486-6178. (Janet Hopf)