05-26-18 – Blog Queen - Sarah Raplee

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


I love stories with cliches that have been given an uncommon twist. For example, as a little girl my favorite Cinderella movie was one entitled Cinderfella.

Remember the way the movie SHREK twisted cliches? The hero is an ogre, the Fairy Godmother is a villain, the evil dragon is only misunderstood. And in the end, the hero is not transformed into a handsome prince. Rather, the Princess becomes an ogre permanently. Loved this!

The twisting of plot and character cliches shows up in my writing on a regular basis. In the short story, Curse of the Neahkahnie Treasure (in the LOVE & MAGICK Anthology from Windtree Press), I used the girl-disguiied-as-a-boy trope. The twist? My hero figures out the boy his dog rescues from drowning is a young woman right after he gets her aboard his sailboat. As soon as she regains consciousness, she learns he knows the truth. The cliche is a hook, not a plot line.

My Paranormal Romantic Suspense novel, BLINDSIGHT, will be out this fall, also from Windtree Press. The heroine is blind. Near the beginning of the book, she needs the hero's help to escape from the bad guys' fortified wilderness compound. The first twist in this story is that in order for the hero to help her escape, the blind heroine must first rescue him from a  drug lord's torture chamber. And she does.

How do you feel about story cliches?

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Judith Ashley said...

Your creativity is boundless, Sarah. I'm always amazed at how you can take a cliche and form it into an interesting read. "Curse of the Neahkahnie Treasure" is a Must Read for anyone who enjoys a well-written story. I'm looking forward to "Blindsight" this fall.

Diana McCollum said...

I enjoyed the movies mentioned, and because of their cliches. Having read parts of "Blindsight" I am looking forward to reading the whole book. Great blog post!!

Linda Paul said...

Good post, Sarah.

Sarah Raplee said...

Thank you for your kind words, Judith. In your short story Grandmother Moon, you have the city-girl heroine rescue the tough cowboy. Did you realize you were turning a cliche on its head?

Sarah Raplee said...

I'm looking frward to reading The Witch with the Trident Tattoo in the fall when it comes out!

Sarah Raplee said...

Glad you enjoyed the post, Linda. Thanks for stopping by.

Judith Ashley said...

Actually, until I read your comment, it would never have occurred to me to look at Grandmother Moon or any other story I've written from that perspective. But the city-girl heroine does rescue the tough cowboy. Thanks for pointing that out!