Inspy Romance, I’m excited to have Pepper Basham with us today! She’s taking over with a post about the romance trope Friends-to-more! Welcome Pepper!
If anyone knows me, he/she knows I LOVE romance!!
I love figuring out how two unique characters will find their way to each other and grow together through the process. As romance readers, there are books that show this ‘finding’ of each other in many different ways…or sometimes called ‘tropes’. A few of them would be the enemies-to-lovers, marriage-of-convenience, forbidden love, and fake romance, but one of my all-time-favorites is friends-to-more (AKA friends-to-lovers).
There’s something incredibly sweet about two people who know each other so well discovering that they love each other in a whole new way…but, as a writer, that also comes with its own set of challenges.
I use this trope in my most recent release, A Match for Emma, and I had NO idea it was going to be SO HARD TO WRITE! I mean, the relationship wasn’t difficult, the dialogue came easily, but one of the things we’re constantly reminded a romance book needs – romantic tension – was tough to find. Why? Well, through half of the story, the two characters aren’t attracted to each other in a romantic way. They’re best friends.
In other tropes, authors have the natural tension of people meeting for the first time and learning about each other – which helps move the plot along. Or, they have the tension ‘enemies’ or ‘pretending’ can create. But for besties, they already know each other. They already have a solid relationship and a history. They are already vulnerable to each other.
So the challenge was learning to show an organic growth of romance through the tension that comes from a growing ‘awareness’ of the other in a different way: small nuances of how their view of each other deepened or changed, or the simple things they’d notice they hadn’t noticed before, which would lead to internal conflict. What if my interest is only one-sided? Is romance worth the risk of changing a great friendship?
I have to say that I LOVED the way it turned out. I think Jon and Emma’s slow growth toward falling in love with each other is a sweet reminder that not all romances come in like a thunder blast, but maybe more like a gentle, spring rain (with a lightning-flash of a closet kiss here or there 😉)
Get your copy here!
Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance peppered with grace and humor with southern Appalachian flair. Both her historical and contemporary novels have garnered recognition in the Grace Awards, Inspys, and ACFW Carol Awards. Her historical romance, The Thorn Healer, was a finalist in the 2018 RT Awards. Her most recent historical romance, My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge, showcases her Appalachian heritage and family history, as well as her love for humor and family. She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC where she is the mom of five great kids, a speech-language pathologist to about fifty more, and a lover of chocolate, jazz, hats, and Jesus. Her next book, The Red Ribbon, is a true crime historical romance arriving in October 2020 with Barbour Publishing.
Pepper loves getting to know readers and other authors through social media outlets like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. You may also learn more about her on her website at www.pepperdbasham.com or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pepperdbasham/
What is a book you’ve read with the friends-to-more trope? How did the author handle the transition from friends to romance?
Leave your answer by 2-24-2020 to be put into the drawing for a copy of A Match for Emma (reader’s choice of digital or paperback)