These are a few of my favorite tropes…

Like many readers and writers I love a good trope. Here are three of my favorites–and which books I use them in!

Friends to Lovers:

I really like how the characters who are already friends can dive right into the story without any “getting to know you” set up. They already have a shared history, which can add depth to their back-story. I utilized this in Deadly Courtship, which is also a second chance romance. Jas and Madi have a history where they used to be lovers but now are friends with the occasional benefit. Jasper is desperately in love with Madi (unrequited love is another favorite trope of mine) and remains friends because he can’t cut her out of his life entirely. Madi is allergic to feelings and doesn’t want to admit how much Jasper means to her, which leaves them ripe for a shift in their relationship.

Fated Mates:

Characters who are meant to be together due to supernatural forces beyond their control is a super popular trope in paranormal romance, and I find the idea really fascinating. In Secret Courtship, Ophelia is a seer with very strong and accurate visions of the future. I used her magical goddess-blessed ability to make a kind of fated mates set up, in that she knows she’ll have a child with Ulric from the time they are young, and her foreknowledge affects all of their interactions. Neither of them is very happy to have the goddess meddling in their lives, which seems like a natural response to being forced together. It creates a situation where being fated mates is a barrier to their happiness, rather than something that smooths the way.

Fake Dating:

I am a total sucker for fake dating! I love the angst characters go through as they realize their feelings are real but can’t tell if their love interest is still pretending. In Crowning Courtship, Terin needs to convince his politically minded mother that he is not available for her matrimonial games. Aurelia steps in to help him, but she is really clear on not wanting her heart involved. It leads to a series of negotiated boundaries and conversations about relationships that is vital to building their trust in each other, and wouldn’t have been possible without the pressure of pretending. There are a lot of layers to a fake relationship story, and I’m not sure I’ll write another one any time soon, but I sure had fun with Terin and Aurelia’s story!

What about you? Do you have any favorite tropes? Any books to recommend as prime examples?


Jaycee Jarvis has been an avid romance reader since devouring all the Sweet Dreams books her middle school library had to offer. Also a fantasy fan from an early age, she often wished those wondrous stories had just a bit more kissing. Now she writes stories with a romantic heart set against a magical backdrop, creating the kind of book she most likes to read.

When not lost in worlds of her own creation, she resides in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three children and a menagerie of pets.

Jaycee is a Golden Heart® finalist and author of the Hands of Destin series. The award winning first book in that series, Taxing Courtship, released in June 2018. The final book in that series, Crowning Courtship, came out in May 2021.

Learn more about her around the web:

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4 Responses to These are a few of my favorite tropes…

  1. I actually don’t think about tropes. My stories are driven by the character’s goals and obstacles, however, I still enjoy reading about them and having them spelled out by you. Thank you.

    • JayceeJarvis says:

      Every author approaches tropes differently. While I do think about tropes at the brainstorm stage, I usually don’t even realize all the tropes I’ve used until the story is complete!

  2. sueberger3 says:

    I believe I might be better off if I thought about tropes. But I don’t I’m a complete Pantser. Plot comes afterwards.

    • JayceeJarvis says:

      I totally understand not looking at tropes from the get go! Sometimes I’ll only notice the tropes I’ve used after the book is written and I’m trying to tell other people about it. I also shop for books to read by trope a LOT!

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