Box? What box? We don’t need to think outside no box…!

On genres and tropes and gender roles and HEAs and HFNs and all the other neat little boxes some people still think we need to use….

For those who don’t know what a trope is, it’s a metaphor or literary device. I’ve seen the word used most often in regards to romance and erotica writing, where the ‘trope’ is the semi-requirement that all the heroes be tall and good-looking and every novel has to end Happily Ever After (HEA). Or, in the case of erotic romance sometimes just Happily For Now (HFN). Just recently I was dinged on this (dinged being my word for the sound made when someone whacks you upside the head) by a reader of one of my books. She said she liked the book overall but that it ‘couldn’t be a romance because it didn’t have an HEA’ and gave me one star.  Well… we won’t mention (often) that the book in question is a thriller, not particularly a romance – although it does have a romance in it – and the ending was pretty much telegraphed from the beginning, because I understand. Most of us who aren’t watching Game of Thrones want our happy endings. But as G.R.R. Martin has proven Continue reading “Box? What box? We don’t need to think outside no box…!”