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For Writers: LGBTIQA Romance Tropes


One of the things that came up during our recent visit to the Dreamspinner retreat was the use of tropes, especially in romance. There’s a great list of general romance tropes here: I especially like “secret baby”. Yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like, if you aren’t already familiar with it. As Angel pointed out to me, tropes aren’t bad, per se, although they can become clichés. They can be used to build a story, and many readers seek out their favorite tropes to find new stories to read. Even Amazon has books categorized by them. The other thing … Read more

For Readers: Lesbian Movie Cliches and Why They Hurt Fiction

Film Tropes

Today’s writer topic comes from QSFer Angel Martinez: You know the ones. The Self-sabotaging protagonist. The angry, humorless lesbian. The butch badass. The omg a lesbian relationship is so scandalous movies. The man who comes along and magically breaks up an established lesbian couple. What are the lesbian film tropes, and what would you like to see replace them? Writers: This is a reader chat – you are welcome to join it, but please do not reference your own works directly. Thanks! Join the chat

Discussion: Why is Your Sword So Big?

giant sword

Today’s topic comes from QSFer and Admin Angel Martinez: Why are fantasy swords so dang big and complicated? We’ve shared this before, but there’s a great post on Fantasy weapon tropes here: Which includes: 7. The Weapon Too Big to Be Useful: Like mystical metals, this is a trope that’s supposed to act as a metaphor. See how big this weapon is? It’s directly proportional to either how awesome or evil its owner is. There is no doubt that for many characters in fantasy, their sword is tied into their identity. But, seriously, unless the size is meant to … Read more

Discussion: New Spins on Old Tropes

Ring of Power

Today’s topic comes from QSFer MK Mancos – “New Spins on Old Tropes”. We all know there are many tropes in speculative fiction. Some are harmful – only straight white men can be sci fi heroes. And some are harmless but overused – the giant sword, the ring of power. But all of them can be subverted or reinvented. So today’s questions – Which tropes would you subvert or give a new spin? And how would you do it?