Tropes and Special Snowflakes
It’s always amazing to me the things I don’t know. One, in particular, was what a trope was.
Yeah, I know.
Five full novels under my belt, half a million words of fan fic, and tropes were one of those things I heard about on blogs and nodded my head like I knew what was going on.
At best, I figured it was synonymous with cliché. And cliché is a bad word. Therefore, trope was a bad word.
I WILL NOT HAVE TROPES! I would cry. I AM A SPECIAL SNOWFLAKE!
Then came this thing where I had to explain what tropes were present in a book, and research away!
Cut to my horrifying conclusion that I had been mentally bad-mouthing something that is not something to be ashamed of.
TROPES ≠ CLICHÉS
TROPES = PLOT DEVICE
Yeah, I totally knew that! But kinda like how all chocolate is good, but not all good things are chocolate, there seems to be a barrier in there somewhere. First, because I’m a list kinda person, let’s get us a list going of some common tropes in romance novels
I know, I know. So actually, what I’ll kindly do is point you to a FANTASTIC blog post I found and used to garner my own knowledge on the subject. There are lists of common tropes, and the author of the post breaks them down to what they look like.
So, for fun, what I’m going to do is pull examples from one of my own books to better explain what a trope is, and then boogie about being a special snowflake.
Hello, Order Up!
For those of you unfamiliar with it, Order Up is my New Adult romance about a pizza delivery guy falling for his coworker, and aside from them being adorably geeky best friends/lovers, problems prevail everywhere they turn.
(I highly recommend it, biased as that is)
BACK TO TROPES!
Tropes can best be summarized as the main focus of a story—the plot lines you ravenously can’t get enough of and inhale like I do the fancy cheese section in my grocery store. You know, the ones that stink so good and are right next to the wine. DON’T JUDGE ME.
Love books about secret babies? Secret babies are a trope.
Can’t get enough cougar romance? You’re a cougar trope lover.
Think tales of virgins falling in love and experiencing intercourse for the first time are the only books that should be written? Virgin tropes be your thing.