YA Bound Girls On… is a new monthly feature, topics ranging and selected ahead of time. We’ve discovered over the course of our time together on the blog that we LOVE to chat…about everything. Books, bad boys, writing, blogging, chocolate, heated topics, and some that make us blush. And, we want to include you guys in our discussions! We love chatting and our readers, so we want to hear your voice on these topics! Join in on the discussion in the comments below. The YA Bound Girls will check in throughout the weekend to chime in and talk with everyone.
For our first discussion, we've invited USA Today Bestselling author of UNBROKEN Melody Grace to be our featured author! She chimes in with how she worked her love triangle in UNBROKEN and her favorite TV love triangles. Check out her reply post here! Then please come and chat with us :)
Nereyda is going to get this party started! What say you on…dun dun dun…love triangles, girl?
Nereyda: Love triangles are always tricky for me. I used to hate them. Absolutely hate them! Then I started to slowly like a few and now, I really like them IF they are done right. Here are my do’s and don’ts for love triangles:
-Let the reader know from the synopsis or the first book that there will be a love triangle involved. If I know from the beginning that there will be a love triangle I am at least prepared and I know what I’m in for.
-Give both love interests a fair shot throughout the book/series. There should always be that internal conflict between both love interests, even if it’s just a tiny one.
-Give the losing love interest a happy or at least hopeful but realistic ending. Falling in love with the daughter instead is NOT okay. *cough Jacob cough*
-Introduce a new love interest in the 2nd or 3rd book out of nowhere. This is my biggest problem with love triangles. Some may work but most don’t.
-Make one book focus on one love interest only to have it change in the next book meanwhile the original love interest barely makes an appearance. A good example is The Body Finder series. It’s all about Jay in the first book and the author makes me fall hard for him then BAM! Books 2 and 3 are all about Rafe and Jay barely even comes out. The Unearthly series by Cynthia Hand is another good example. What happened to Tucker in books 2 and 3!?
-A triangle is more than enough. Don’t let it become a love square. Or a love octagon like Zoey’s case in The House of Night series. *cringes*
-Please for the love of God do NOT ‘solve’ a love triangle by killing off one of the love interests. Especially if they are sacrificing themselves so the other person can have a happy ending. Not only is this NEVER and okay solution, but it is also such a cop-out. *cough Ren cough*
Trish: Coming from a writer who has written a love triangle *gasp* I’m a bit biased, and do love them myself. But, I have to admit that I don’t love them all. Nereyda pretty much summed up my feelings on the topic, but I’ll elaborate on one of her points: Give both love interests a fair shot. I agree completely with this. If you’re going to introduce a love triangle, I say it’s better to go balls to the wall and give both boys some game, and let them equally battle for and have a shot with the heroine.
I don’t consider a book with a heroine who is obviously in love with or crushing hard on Guy1 and not on Guy2 to be true triangle—there has to be some tangible tension; her struggle over both guys pulling her in opposite directions. I need to understand her reasons for this struggle (also the same case for a guy in a triangle for two girls—same rules apply). Hell, I was young once and cared for more than one guy at a time. I can relate to that. But please, do not let the triangle make our heroine weak or indecisive. Which does not mean that she can’t have some internal conflict to battle with, just in the end, at least for me, she needs to come to a decision on her feelings and make the choice that’s best for her, and she needs to stand by it.
And, I’m not in favor of making that choice only to change one’s mind in the third book and suddenly go for Guy2 :/ I know this does work well in some series, but by this point, I’ve become attached, and it breaks my heart for the other guy. There needs to be a damn good reason why our heroine suddenly goes for Guy2 for me to go along with this shift—unless the triangle lasts the length of the series, in which case I may even have stopped reading by book five lol I’m all for a good triangle, but I tend to get weary when it lasts longer than a few novels.
Kelly: I admit to having been in a few love triangles in high school, so I do enjoy reading about them and writing them. The key is to make sure the emotions are genuine. There has to be a reason for caring about two people at the same time. It can't just be for the sake of conflict, or the reader will see right through it. Also, loving the guy (or girl) who is already in a relationship opens the MC up for a lot of heartache, but again those feelings must be real. There has to be a reason why the MC cares so much for the guy she's never dated before. So the author has to make sure the set up is complete and the feelings are genuine. If done well, love triangles can make for some really great and swoon-worthy reads.