Friday, 3 August 2012

Tough love

I came to the realisation this week that the part of my novel I'm having most trouble with - a couple of chapters in the middle - is problematic because my characters are too darned happy. I ramp up the tension at the start; I build to a crescendo at the end. But for a fair few pages, right in the middle of the story, everything is going marvellously for my hero and heroine, and, frankly, it's boring me.

So at the risk of sounding like a sadist, my job this week is to make these two (mostly) lovely people unhappy. I'll keep them apart. I'll bring them together with unfortunate timing. I'll make them jealous and peevy, nervous and awkward, and really quite frustrated - in every sense of the word. Anything really, as long as they're not too happy about it.

Why do I take such pleasure in making them suffer? Because I'm writing romance! So I know they'll get their happy ever after soon enough, and they (and I, and hopefully you) will enjoy it all the more if they haven't taken the quickest, smoothest path there. I know they'll thank me in the end.


P.S. Feel free to share any ways you like to torture your characters in the comments box (within reason - no actual torture please :) )


  1. Ellie, loved this post. It's a good reminder that our characters have to go through a lot to reach their H.E.A.

    Have a great weekend! :-))

    Jan Romes

    1. Hi Jan, Thanks! I feel mean doing it, but just have to tell myself that it's for their own good! x