Friday, April 13, 2012

L: Love

I believe that good stories needs a little romance in them. It doesn’t have to have to be the entire plot, but I enjoy it when it is there. What makes a good romance plot line?
1.      It can’t be too easy. If they meet and fall in love and have no problems, then that is boring and boring is never good.
Granted, if their only problem is they spend two hundred pages simply not communicating, then that is frustrating. Frustrating books aren’t enjoyable. If the main relationship problem can be solved in a ten minute conversation, then it isn’t compelling enough.
2.      The characters have to be likeable. If your protagonist is going to fall in love with the guy, the reader better fall in love with him too. Even if he is a scoundrel, make sure he has redeemable qualities.
3.      The characters have to be flawed. At this point, you’re probably thinking this contradicts the statement of number two. But that’s not the case at all. Likable does not mean perfect. No one is perfect and so no one wants to read about perfect people.
Important to note: whatever flaws your character has, don’t let it disappear when they begin a relationship. If he gets jealous easily, that isn’t going to mysteriously change after they become a couple. Flaws are important for character arcs, but an arc is just that . . . an arc. It can’t be a sudden and unexplainable change.
4.      With kissing, less is more. I recently read a book where the characters kissed every few chapters. It lost the impact. On the other hand, in a different book I read, the characters almost kissed several times but were interrupted. By the time they actually did kiss, it had been built up so much that it was perfect.


  1. Great tips! I ran that little check list over my WIP and I think I'm doing okay! :D

  2. Good tips for those who write novels, enjoyed reading them.


  3. Interesting! My first published book has no sex and my writing group was impatient for them to just do it. But it didn't feel right for my couple, so they didn't. And I got a comment, from a guy no less, who said he admired that I didn't resort to using sex as a mechanism to keep people's interest... maybe it was the hope for it at the end!

  4. A little romance goes a long way . . and the same goes for the kissing scenes. Great post!

  5. A little romance is always nice in a book. I like to have the romantic couple just a bit quirky: not beautiful and hunky, not the perfect match, not always faultless in the relationship.

    Thanks for stopping in to say hi at the Write Game during the A to Z.

  6. Good take on the whole kissing thing. That's also true in life - if you just reach out and plant a wet one on them all the darn time, it's like licking a toad. if you build it up, tease it, the resulting kiss is magic.

  7. I do love a good romance where the tension is high and they're kept apart for the majority of it! Good advice, Jessica :)