Thursday Thoughts: Universal Words

One of the strategems that romance writers often use to create drama and tension is the “Great Misunderstanding”–words or actions tossed out that create hurt feelings. In romance, this has become if not a trope, a cliché. This in and of itself is not a bad thing. We all say things that are taken wrong. We think we’re saying one thing but our listener hears something totally different for whatever reason, be it difference in experience, expections, and/or emotions. What drives me batty is when this drama could easily be cleared up if those involved would just sit down and discuss the whys and wherefores, the ins and outs, the differences that pushed things off the rails, and the author just lets the misunderstanding keep festering in order to draw out the disconnect so there can be a big make-up scene.

Sadly, this does happen in real life, which is why it’s become a staple of romance scenarios. The Universe has an interesting thought on this.

It’s not what one says, Silver, that determines whether it’s true or false, but what they tried to convey.

Listen with your heart,
The Universe
© ®

For mere words, dear Silver, can be chameleons.

As writers, we need to be very aware of this. Yeah, yeah. I know, trust me. It’s hard enough to decide if we’ve picked the right word/words when we’re telling our stories. Don’t let that stall out your writing–especially during NaNoWriMo. My NaNo project is currently littered with **FIND THE WORD THAT SAYS THIS** (whatever this is). But our job as writers is to convey ideas and situations, emotions and actions in a way that advances the story as well as touches our readers in the way we want. In the real world, we also need to be aware of what comes out of our mouths and goes into our ears.


About Silver James

I like walks on the wild side and coffee. Lots of coffee. Warning: My Muse runs with scissors. Author of several award-winning series--Moonstruck, Nightriders MC, The Penumbra Papers, and Red Dirt Royalty (Harlequin Desire) & other books! Purveyor of magic, mystery, mayhem and romance. Lots and lots of romance.
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2 Responses to Thursday Thoughts: Universal Words

  1. Ah, the big misunderstanding. Yep yep… staple in the romance genre. And in the mystery genre, if I’m thinking right. (Long day, big dinner… want to sleep, but have to write…) And yep, yep, the word finding thing is a pain in the buns. Lucky we have edits later to fix all those wrong words and little notes to ourselves.

    Yeah, not so good at the talking. Today’s been a bad one for that. At one point, I was trying to tell Hubs something and said “That pile of leaves is only from just past the…” and then all words stopped flowing. I couldn’t think of what that thing beside the garage was… you know, a GARDEN… and all the words around it got clogged and I stood there like a retard. Lucky for me, Hubs is used to it. In my defense, it gets worse when I’m tired and I overdid the raking so I was dead tired. Not much better now, which doesn’t bode well for tonight’s writing session. But hey, I managed to type this whole comment, so maybe there’s hope.

    • Silver James says:

      Words have been hard for me today too. I’ve got about 1300 words on the day so I’m close. Dinner’s over, dishes done, Live PD Cam DVRing so I’m going to finish this chapter and hopefully have 2k+ words to report to NaNo. Hot shower before bed to help the muscles loosen up! Gotta take care of you. 🙂

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