What specifically irritates you about Romance Novels?

Many people love them and many people hate them but there is no denying that they are one of the most successful genre’s out there. I know we have all read at least one or two, it is what I write actually so I was wondering what irks you the most when you are reading one. Here are a few thoughts of mine.

  1. The couple goes from complete strangers to having sex overnight.

  2. Overly describing every outfit that every character is wearing. A few are ok but excessively is just frustrating.

  3. Using profanity constantly for no apparent reason. Sometimes it does help your story along or feel necessary for emphasis but it should not be every other word.

clears throat I am going to be a hypocrite right now, but that’s ok XD

  1. I ESPECIALLY hate when people assume that there’s always going to be a happy ending at the end of the story. Like, where’s the ugly side of romance? Break ups? HELLO?
  1. I was about to say this one, but you took it XD

  2. Billionaires who have a bad side. I get it, it’s great and all, but can we get something different now? Oh, and also those bad boys in school too. shakes head in disappointment You get what I mean.

  3. When people overly describe their feelings about their crush or lover. We get it. We know how it feels, we don’t need a whole movie to explain how the MC feels about love.

  4. You know in the story, when the MC and some snotty girl always compete for that one boy and the snotty girl is always the one that gets put down later because of something she did which is usually bad? Come on! Snotty girls have a reason to be snotty. They’re not snotty because they like to be snotty. There’s more to that than meets the eye.

That’s all I have on the top of my head but I’ll edit this post once I have more that comes to mind XD

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I hate when the entire book is about nothing except the two people who are getting together. Um, even though, yes, that’s ultimately what the story is about, there still has to be another plot. The characters need goals, there needs to be an antagonist, and there need to be stakes.

It still needs to be a well crafted novel!

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In Romance-with-a-capital-R, there is always a Happy Ever After. It’s literally part of the definition of the genre, as defined by Romance Writers of America.

In ANY other genre, including Women’s Fiction, there can be strong romantic elements, and the romance does not have to have an HEA.

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That is a great observation and I know it is something I have struggled with, developing the supporting characters. You do get so much more out of it when there is an entire cast of characters.

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Those are all great and I feel on overly describing the feelings of the MC. It can get carried away!

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I usually dislike romance as a genre.

  • I can usually tell who’s going to end up with who the instant they’re introduced.
  • Too many “bad boys” that are usually toxic and should ping as horrifying
  • Too many horribly creepy situations passed as “aww, cute, he/she cares about him/her!”
  • The whole character is ALL about the romance and forgets he/she is supposed to be a (fictional) real person
  • Characters tend to outright obsess over their love interest like they’re on a drug
  • There’s ALWAYS a love rival.
  • … and they’re USUALLY irredeemably awful so that the author reader doesn’t feel bad when the MC ends up with the correct love interest.
  • Too much abuse passed as healthy love
  • Too much stalking passed as cute.
  • Too many “TRUE LOVE OF MY LIFE!!!” situations
  • Too much love at first sight
  • Often the MC just “knows” that he/she is fated to be with him/her and they’re the perfect “true love”
  • This doesn’t happen all the time, but when the conflict isn’t about that rival, it tends to be that the love interest did something AWFUL, be it that they started the relationship for all the (humiliating) wrong reasons, or they otherwise just do something nasty, and it’s somehow okay and they’re forgiven in the end because they totally changed and love the MC for real now.
  • Often, the MC is supposed to be pretty unlikeable or average… but everyone likes them?
  • Somehow it seems that the whole universe revolves around many of these MCs. The world was turning just fine before they arrived at their new setting, but somehow everything will be turned upside-down just because they’re there, everything will revolve around them, etc.

I understand that not every romance story has these, but I’ve seen/read too many romantic stories with them.

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But as an author, you need to point out the ugly side of life. You can’t keep burying your head into the sand and say that these things don’t happen. It’s not a fantasy, it’s life. It’s not realistic at all if all of them are happy endings shrugs

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Agree with you on this!
Having the same type of romance plot line can get annoying and boring, so it’s nice to spice things up and try something new.

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No one claimed it was. And NO ONE said you can’t write that story – and even publish it. It just wouldn’t be sold as Romance-with-a-capital-R. That’s all it means.

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Yeah, have you seen those Wattpad books that are blowing up with reads and votes? They’re the bad boy and billionaire stories and I’m just sitting here, confused XD

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You pretty much nailed it. I always giggle a little when I think about Fifty Shades. Don’t get me wrong, I like a good Romance Novel/Movie as much as the next girl but for Pete’s sake in real life any girl would have run screaming from that freaking “Red Room”. If he wasn’t a billionaire he would have been considered a psychopath!

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i have no idea what the difference is between Romance and romance. Is that a thing?

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There is truth in that but I think on some level the reason people are so addicted to Romance is so they can escape reality and pretend for a little while like everything works out in the end.

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Honestly, I love these kind of threads because I don’t read romance but am trying to write a cliche/trope filled romance story from the POVs of two characters who are friends of the male love interest and are just watching all this stuff happen and saying ‘That’s not how it works’, ‘Why are you talking about her ‘orbs’? What the hell are ‘orbs’ anyway?’ ‘Dude, I don’t need to know what designer clothes she wore on your date, so please stop waxing poetic on it.’ and things like that.

So these are good reference points.

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Yes, they are, on some level, I think it fills the need some woman have to “fix” a man, turn the bad boy good.

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I’m not sure?

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The ‘orbs’ thing is hysterical, I haven’t read it personally but have seen it commented on in a different thread. I would call it a desperate attempt to find creative variances on words.

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I agree and sometimes I do that too, but doesn’t it get a little old to see all these books that have the same outcome? I read a couple of books that had a bad ending and I was shook for like 2 days straight XD

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Me neither, have not heard of that!
I thought Romance/romance was…well just Romance/romance :woman_shrugging:

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