Wait…what? Tropes All Over

By: Aryanne Ferguson

There’s an entire website dedicated to tropes! Check it out here.  In case you didn’t click the link, tropes are devices and conventions that a writer can reasonably rely on as being present in the audience members’ minds and expectations.

As writers, readers, and TV-watchers we’ve all seen our fair share of recycled plots, and here they are—laid out in campy glory!  Some of my favorites:

  • Omnipresent tropes – the sometimes subtle patterns that are present in all our writing
  • Subverted Trope – nothing like giving the reader what they don’t expect
  • Strictly Formula – makes the case that when your action follows a predictable formula, you’re free to experiment with everything else, example characterization, language, writing style, description

Can you recognize the tropes in your own writing?

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