Bad RomanceDecember 21, 2009 at 11:46 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | 11 Comments
“You and I could write a bad romance.”
Lady Gaga knows the insecurities of writers, it seems. What makes a bad romance? Is my book a bad romance?
Pitfalls and booby traps are so VERY hard to avoid when I’m writing. Sometimes I get lost in the flow of my MC and her LI, that I basically keep re-writing the same scenes over and over again. But real-life relationships aren’t like that. They make progress. They have beginning, middle, and (sadly, it’s true) end points. And at each stage, the characters act differently around each other. They’re not static. And static characters make for a bad romance.
Other notorious screw-ups I catch myself making (and when I don’t, my betas catch–thank you betas!):
1. No more chemistry. The MC and her LI start out strong at the beginning, exchange witty witticism, tease each other, and their hearts pound when they catch a glimpse of each other. But once they’re together, it becomes dull, monotone. There are no more mysteries. There are no surprises left waiting for the LI in his locker. Yes. This does happen to crumbling relationships in real life. But are those interesting to read about?
2. Lack of conversation. You know you’ve got a problem (and the relationship does) when your characters are talking about the weather. About other characters. About last night’s homework. Anything but the good stuff.
3. Cheesy one-liners. While on the other hand, the guy’s lines and the girl’s lines appear to be scripted. We have joke books and the internet for that.
4. A too-perfect couple? Creepy. Give me the cracks, the imperfections. Perfect people are depressing enough in real-life.
5. Super implausible pairings. Paris Hilton will not date a cashier at Subway.
What do you think I may have missed in my defining of a bad romance?