05-26-18 – Blog Queen - Sarah Raplee

Monday, September 1, 2014

Romantic Cliches- Love them or hate them? by Paty Jager

This month the queens of this blog picked an interesting subject that I've never really thought about. I don't think about romantic cliches when I write a story. I had to look them up on the internet to see what exactly they were.

I found one site that listed these as Romantic Cliches to avoid when writing romance.
Evil other woman
Evil ex-wife - Or I guess husband?
Evil relatives - (I'm seeing a pattern here) Avoid evil anyone other than a real evil person in a suspense or thriller maybe?
Country mouse theme - Did you get lost too? This is where a powerful woman from the city goes to the country and becomes meek.
Naive virginal heroine - I'm sorry but writing historical romance, I have to keep my heroines virginal or give them a really good reason for not being that way. My heroine in my contemporary action adventure had a good reason too.
The Duke of Slut! - This one made me chuckle. This is one cliche I can do without. I don't like this kind of hero so it definitely wouldn't be a favorite.
The Will stipulation - I think we've all read at least one book where the hero and heroine are brought together by a will. I've never been a fan of those either.
I guess I'm whittling down the list of what I don't like. ;)
Amnesia plot - Another one I've never been a fan of.
Silly Big Mistake - I don't care for this one either. When the conflict can be taken care of if the two just sit down and talk...

Then I went to a site that listed the Romantic Cliches in romantic comedies.
Small pond escape - This is where a person from a small town moves away to a big city and then comes back and falls in love.
Frenemies - need I say more.
Meet Cute - Where the hero and heroine meet usually because they are klutzy. (I didn't know this term until I watched The Holiday with Jude Law, Jack Black, Cameron Diaz, and Kate Winslet. Wonderful movie and they use the Meet Cute in the movie.  So I like this cliche. ;)
Dream Dismissal- One character gives up their dream job.
Movie Makeover- Turn an ugly duckling into a swan.
Make ex jealous - they kiss or carry on to make an ex jealous and end up falling in love. There are several movies I've watched like this. I kind of like this one.
Career gal regret - wanting to start a family/ get married.
Just friends -
Hidden agenda- I like hidden agenda. I used that in Staking Claim. And I think it might be my favorite romantic cliche.

Staking Claim
Book Two – Halsey Homecoming Trilogy – Colin’s story
Deceit, contradictions, and lies.

On a ship bound for America, Colin Healy encounters a contradictory woman, whose beauty and grace intrigue him.

Livie Leatherby boards the ship as an imposter to get the information she needs to save her family. Befriending Sir Colin Healy is easy with his chivalrous tendencies. But she soon realizes discovering his past marks him for death.

Forced together to stay one step ahead of the Lord set on killing Colin for his estate, can these two get beyond the lies and deceit that has brought them together before one or the other meets their demise?

Buy Links:  Amazon / Nook / Apple / Kobo / Windtree Press

Do you have a favorite cliche that you like to read about? As a writer do you notice if you use a favorite cliche in your stories?

You can learn more about Paty at her blog; Writing into the Sunset  her website; or on Facebook;!/paty.jager , Goodreads  and twitter;  @patyjag.


Rain Trueax said...

'The Holiday' is one of my favorite movies, which I can watch every so often for the great characters. I adore Jack Black in pretty much anything. Eli Wallach was also such a treat in it and hard to believe he was the same guy as years earlier in 'The Good, The Bad and the Ugly.' The joys of aging.

I don't know if my favorite scenarios fit the cliche list but I like to write and read stories where hero or heroine find they have to open themselves up to their inner self if they want a HEA. Fitting along with that are the stories where the character (usually a hero) feels they have gone so far in the wrong direction that they can't turn it around, and it's the job of the lover to convince them it's not too late-- but then comes the real work.

Genres though are the tough one for me when deciding which I prefer or even putting my own works into the right ones.

Paty Jager said...

Rain, It's interesting we keep finding more things we have in common. Yes, Eli Wallach did a great job in "The Holiday."

Sounds like you like the redeemed bad boy stories. ;)

Thanks for stopping in and commenting!

Judith Ashley said...

Paty, a very thoughtful post! As one of the Blog Queens who came up with this idea in August 2013, I now wonder why? What were we thinking?

Right now I'm reading an historical novel where the heroine is disguised like a boy and the hero has yet to see through the disguise so she is learning all kinds of things about him that don't fit the Ton's image of him.

It's well done, has good humor in some of the situations and I'm enjoying it. I think some of the romantic cliched stories, when well done, can be a good read.

Christy Carlyle said...

The Holiday is one of my favorite films! I actually visited Shere, the village in England where part of it was filmed and I was a bit in awe.

I actually love cliche stories most of the time. It's what a clever author does to make them unique that makes all the difference.

Thanks for a thought-provoking post.

Karen Duvall said...

I loved The Holiday. I also loved How To Lose A Guy In Ten Days, which I guess would be a frenemmies cliche, so that must mean I like those. Friends to lovers is also a favorite of mine. I also like stories where the kids are responsible in some way for getting the hero and heroine together. Kids or pets, either one. Those are cute. Plans that backfire are also great stories, like While You Were Sleeping and You've Got Mail. Those were fun.

Paty Jager said...

Judith, True. If the author does a good job with the story an overused cliche doesn't really matter. Thanks for commenting.

Christy, Now I'm green with jealousy. There are some movies that I watch just for the "travel". I would love to see those parts of England. Thanks for commenting.

Hi Karen, I watch While You Were Sleeping about every other month. Love most of Sandra Bullocks movies. I like the movies where kids or pets bring the hero and heroine together too. Thanks for stopping in!

Sarah Raplee said...

One of the things I find interesting about cliche's is that they often make statements that are not true. For example,'the naive virginal heroine" cliche assumes virginal = naive. In the first manuscript I wrote, I wanted to explore what happens when a very good girl does one Very Bad Thing. I'm talking attempted murder here. One of the results was that she remains a virgin due to being incarcerated, but she's far from naive.

Looking for those false assumptions is one way to turn a cliche on its head.

Diana McCollum said...

If written well with a new spin I enjoy cliche plots. I like some of the same movies mentioned above. I really like Sleepless in Seattle, How to lose a Guy in Ten Days, I think it's called the Wedding Planner, with Jennifer Lopez. Pretty much any Sandra Bullock movie.

Paty Jager said...

Sarah, that's true. Finding a way to tip a cliche in a different direction is a sure sign of a unique and intriguing book.

Hi Diana, That seems everyone has the same thought on the spin on a cliche.