Monday, April 24, 2017

Guest Post: The Inspiration behind A SYMPHONY OF HEART STRINGS by T.E. Hodden #Romance #NovellaNiblets


A Symphony of Heart Strings
Paranormal Romance
By T.E. Hodden
Release Date: April 24, 2017
Publisher: Roane Publishing

Keywords: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Contemporary, London, Novella Niblets

Meet Bob. Bob is the guy between the lines of every love story you ever met. The lucky chance, the twist of fate, the astounding coincidence that sets sparks flying. Never seen, but always there.

Today Bob is assigned to help Jenny find love. But there is something more than bad luck working against the quirky librarian. Bob might have to save her life, before he can help her find love.

And he can't do that from the shadows....



Some time ago I was writing a romantic drama (rather than a real romance) about a writer who greatly preferred the fictional worlds of romantic fiction to reality. Romance is an odd genre. It has few rules, but it enforces them far stronger than other genres (there absolutely has to be a Happy ending these days, Romeo and Juliet just won't cut it) and there are all kinds of patterns that we find in the stories, some of which become hackneyed and tropes (at least in the hands of a bumbling fool like me), and some which never seem to get old.  This is true of every genre, to some degree. Over thousands of years we have found the beats and the tones of a story that resonate. Look at Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, and Die Hard, and you will see the same patterns showing through in very different stories.

Over time I kept going to that idea, and wondering: What if these patterns cropped up, because somebody was tinkering behind the scenes. This is not an entirely new idea of course, but the golden rule of writers is to find a new angle to look at something from, and new ways to toy with a subject. I make no qualms in admitting that the story is a love letter to better romances. The fun in writing came from admitting I don't quite get the recipe right, and appreciating the ingredients that Roane stablemates have far better grips on.

There are some direct inspirations that are worth noting. Dressing a bloke all in white to emphasise something a little unnatural is a bit of classic. Simply not having stains, dirt, or hints of abuse is an effective shorthand. You will have seen it all the time on film, or TV, for angels, or ghosts. Notably in the cult classic Randal and Hopkirk (deceased).

The "lead girl" role is another staple. A lot of romances start with girls who are out of luck in love. You have to start there, so they have somewhere to go, love to find, and a journey to take. When done carelessly (and I think I am guilty of this) you are stuck with a paradox: How can a character we fall in love with on page one, not have been noticed by the whole world. It was fun to suggest that sometimes there reasons that bad luck and bad choices haunt good characters.



T. E. Hodden trained in engineering, and works in the rail industry. He writes as a hobby, when he is not walking the Kent coast, looking for forgotten nooks and crannies of history and folklore.


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