Thursday, June 2, 2011

Head-Butting Romantic Conflicts

According to Writing a Romance Novel for Dummies, by Leslie Waigner, there are three common issues facing the hero and heroine:
Trust: Need I say more?
Control: Who needs the guy to control you—and ultimately your heart—when your skills and confidence make you a kickass [fill in the blank]?
Self-image: How could he possibly be interested in me when XX is much prettier, smarter, skinnier (the list goes on)?
The benefit of using an issue such as above is that it keeps your hero and heroine together plot wise, but keeps them apart emotionally. This helps drives the conflicts (both internal and external) while allowing the happy couple to eventually fall in love.
Does anyone have any other issues to add to the list?

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Christine Murray said...

There's the much loved 'forbidden love' conflict, where the hero and heroine want to be together but can't be for a very good external reason, eg Romeo and Juliet.

Linda Kage said...

Hey, I'm reading a story right now where the heroine is dealing with the Self-image thing.

It's SOOOOO good. I just want to cry for her on every other page. And the hero really likes her but he sucks at boosting her self-confidence, so I feel bad for both H/H even though I want to bash their heads together and say "Hey, you love each other. The end!"

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Forbidden Love conflict is a great one.

Yeah, I have those 'bash their heads' moments too.

Marie Rose Dufour said...

Great post. I think those common issues facing the h/h are what readers can relate to the most. Those are the types of issues that we actually struggle with in our own lives!

McKenzie McCann said...

I'm a fan of time being an issue. It can be as extreme as The Time-traveler's Wife or as basic as The Notebook.

It presents an external conflict to a loving relationship. But it tends to get kind of sappy, if done poorly.

Tracy said...

My favorite is the sworn enemies who are attracted to each other anyway. It's sort of the Forbidden Love with a fiery twist.

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