I, as a writer, hate cliches. Most romantisize disturbing topics or just bore you to death, but what if they’re written correctly? As I’ve been stuck in writers block, I started my story out by creating some characters to see if I could inspire myself. I ended up creating a couple of love interests and I don’t know what to do! What are your suggestions and ideas for well written cliches.
If you hate cliches you can do that the MC has to pick between a girl and a boy as she battles figuring out her sexuality
Remember that tropes are tools, and a tripe only becomes a cliche when it is inherently annoying.
Try studying what it is that makes people not like love triangles, and avoid that.
Don’t make the characters who like the MC instantly fall in love with her/him. take it slow
I completley agree! I always hate it that many Episode stories take things way too fast, like they can’t wait to write romance scenes (which I understand), but it’s just not realistic. I like to really develop my stories and keep it interesting while avoiding unnecessary rapid growth. Thanks so much! <3
It’s funny you said that, I stayed up all night last night reading why people avoid love triangle stories (even though I have seven hours of drivers-ed each day this week but it’s whatever). I try to avoid cliches and, like many other authors/writers, I look over my stories as though I’m a reader and make sure it’s not getting annoying, boring, etc. Thanks so much! <3
I have seen this be used before and I think it’s a really great idea, it is a great challenge considering I am not personally LGBTQ+. Thanks so much! <3
If you do have one female love interest and one male love interest, try not to make it biphobic. I mean, it’s okay if she chooses either one of them, but make it about the character, and not her “choosing whether to be gay or straight”. I’ve seen it done like that, and it’s incredibly offensive. A bisexual (or pansexual) person doesn’t suddenly turn gay or straight because of the person they’re dating… But good luck with your story!
You are absolutley right and I completly agree. Though I’m not personally gay, I understand that it’s not just an overnight decision, it is a literal feeling and it’s full of emotion. I respect the LGBTQ+ community fully and would not write a story involving it if I was ignorant about the subject. Thank you so much for your input! <3
I hate the whole “love at first sight” thing. In many Episode Featured stories they give you a gem choice if the MC wishes the kiss the love interest. Normally this happens a couple of minutes after the two first meets. Can’t we take it slow?
Yeah so maybe do a slow burning romance instead of an immediate one.
I’m so glad you said this. I love to develop my stories, it makes them more real, as most cliches are as “disney” as it gets. If you don’t say I love you to a boy in middle school after two days you don’t do it in a story. Thanks so much! <3
So the main character of the story I’m currently working on has three love interests, but it’s not a love square, exactly. They don’t fight over her because they’re all very different girls who don’t hang out in the first place, and though one of them starts out kind of flirty, a relationship can’t take place with any of them until you know the one you chose more.
I’d say just treat your love interests like actual characters; just because they’re not as in-focus as the MC (assuming you’re writing in first person) doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be fleshed out. That’s the most important thing, imo.
I would actually add more people. So if there was one girl and three guys, I’d add more girls and have it kind of like this:
Guy1 - loves MC, jealous of Guy2
MC - indecisive, but really good friends with both
Girl2- Loves Guy1
I believe this is a cliche, but when it is executed in a better fashion, it can be tear-jerking.
Another thing I would concentrate on is the development of the relationship, rather than “he’s hot”. Just a lot of emotions everywhere to make the story as painful as possible and leave the reader with a void in their heart once the story is over.
Say if I have a love triangle… how exactly do I choose “JAKE” over “RYAN” or “RYAN” over “JAKE” and keep the story going if either is chosen? like a simple version of doing it?
Do you mean like if the MC collects a certain amount of points for either Jake or Ryan throughout the story ? Or does the MC get to chose who to romance right from the start?
Here’s my advice.
Don’t worry about cliches. Cliches are a thing because they can work, they can effectively be entertaining.
When writing, don’t try to give yourself restrictions based on, “Oh, I don’t want to be too cliche,” or “Oh, this has to have this character be a love interest” and so on.
Write characters first. Figure out who they are.
How do they talk? Do they have an accent? Where do they live? Are they well-off? Are they poor? How did they get to where they are now? Are they happy with how their life is currently? Do they have ambitions? Dreams? Fears? What do they look for in a romantic partner? What can they bring to this relationship? Does it make sense within the universe of the story for these characters to be interested in one another?
Once you start building the actual characters, you can work on putting them where they need to be.
How do these characters meet? What makes them want to talk to one another? Do they have shared interests? Do they immediately like/dislike something about the other person based on their appearance? How about based on their personality or social status? Are they correct in these assumptions?
Work on these things first. The more you get to know the people you’re writing about, the more naturally you can make their social relationships develop.
Love triangles work when they’re actually a source of internal conflict for the main character. The reason they fall flat so often is because the author shows obvious favor toward one love interest over the other. Make sure to give both love interests equal screen time and time with the main character. Develop them both equally and make it plausible that either one could end up with the main character. It should really make the reader put more thought into choosing a love interest than simply “MC met this LI first, so it’s just going to end up being them anyway”. There should be the potential for the main character to have a healthy relationship with either love interest. The answer for which love interest is endgame shouldn’t be obvious to the main character or to the reader.
Also keep in mind that a happily single main character and polyamory (depending on how good those involved are with trust, communication, and avoiding jealousy) are both relatively unexplored possibilities for how the love triangle can be resolved.
This is probably the best observation listed so far, to be honest. I hate reading about a romance when I already know what’s going to happen. It makes me feel like I’m just wasting my time.