This week: Love is in the airEdited by: Lonewolf
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Romance liven up your characters, but it adds real drama and emotion to your story. If done correctly, it contributes to real depth. It’s the idea that when two people meet, they change each other. For better? For worse? Either one can be great for your characterization. In real life, finding and getting along with your “other half” long-term is difficult. The good news when it comes to fiction is that conflict is the engine that keeps every story going, and the love relationship between your characters is one of the most important parts of that engine.
A great romance is about the people, not just the plot. It's about the growing relationship between two individuals. Besides, loving someone is about loving their personality and everything else that comes with it. You want your characters to struggle and fail and ultimately succeed just as much as real people do in their love lives. People in relationships grow independently and collectively.
Your character can grow and change without their partner's influence just as much as your character can grow and change due to their partner's influence. Agreements, disagreements, similarities, differences. They're never going to be static, for they too will change. After that, write their relationship like any relationship between two people.
There should be a voluntary consensus between the people involved, even if it's not explicitly said. This doesn't mean that a relationship should be perfect. There's banter about who's cooking dinner tonight to full-blown ignoring each other for a week, moments of disagreements and tension can be used to improve any relationship if used correctly.
Meaning; they're not solely for the sake of creating drama
And as much as many shows and books would like to say otherwise, most people in a close relationship share more similarities than differences. Generally, we are attracted to people who are, to a certain degree, similar to us; we prefer times when our partner would support us than oppose us.
Thus, while differences are great and stimulating, don't forget that your characters should have similarities that can help strengthen or even start their relationship.
So what interests or hobbies do they share? In what ways do their views clash? What makes the characters attracted mentally, physically, etc to each other? What repulses the characters about each other? How do they settle their differences or make peace after an argument? Are they stubborn or are they flexible when it comes to their beliefs? Build on their characteristics separately and then connect them.
Once you have the core aspects of their relationship, add the romantic traits into it. What is romance to you? Most importantly, what is romance according to the characters involved?
Romance, in general, is interpreted differently in many cultures and upbringings, so it's important to focus on what your characters deem as romantic. As long as the romance delivers, and is believable, for the characters involved, then your readers will pick up on that.
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