In this post, we have included 43 things for you to consider when you write about love.
How do we write about love in an authentic way?
This post is not about writing a love story. Rather, it is a post that looks at the emotion of love and how we write about it.
Love is complicated. The emotion covers feelings for family, friends, lovers, animals, and gods. When we write about love, we need to shade the emotion according to the characters and their loved ones.
The same is true for the characters we create. When we write about characters and the love they feel for others, we should remember to write about them in a realistic way.
The people, animals, things, places, and gods they love reveal everything about them.
43 Ways To Write About Love
Here are 43 things to consider when you write about love:
A) Types Of Love
According to the Triangular Theory of Love, love is made up of three components: Intimacy, Passion, and Commitment.
Depending on the mix of these components, you have eight types of love.
8 Types Of Love
- Nonlove – means the absence of all three components: Intimacy, Passion, and Commitment .
- Liking – means you have Intimacy, but the absence of Passion and Commitment.
- Infatuated love – means you have Passion, but the absence of the Intimacy and Commitment.
- Empty love – means you have Commitment, but the absence of Intimacy and Passion.
- Romantic love – a combination of Intimacy and Passion without Commitment.
- Companionate love – a combination of Intimacy and Commitment without Passion.
- Fatuous love – a combination of Passion and Commitment without Intimacy.
- Consummate, or complete love, – the full combination of all three components: Intimacy, Passion, and Commitment.
Read: Types Of Love
B) Body Language
In your body language, signs of love include those relating to desire, pleasure, and happiness:
- Looking up through lashes.
- Glancing over your shoulder.
- Crossing and uncrossing legs.
- Making eye contact.
- Tilting head backward.
- Leaning forward.
- Placing hand on heart.
- Parted lips.
- Wide eyes.
- Closed eyes.
- Crinkling nose and eyes.
- Swinging arms.
C) Ways To Create Conflict With Love
The love interest is the most useful and the most common of all sub-plots. Love interests in fiction are the most common way to create internal and external conflict. A love interest does not have to be a romantic love interest. ‘It can be a friend, a pet, or a family member.’ (source)
- Internal: Loving somebody means we are vulnerable and writers can use this vulnerability to manipulate their characters mentally, emotionally, and morally.
- External: Writers use love interests to thwart the main characters by threatening the well-being of the people and the things they love. What would your character do for a loved one?
D) The Importance Of Love In Plotting
- The pursuit of love is a great sub-plot, especially if a romantic interest is involved.
- You can use an established love relationship to support a character who has a challenging job.
- You can also use an unusual love interest to create depth in your story. Read 6 Uncommon Romantic Love Interests for inspiration.
- Use a place or an object that a character loves to show us more about them.
- Put something or someone the character loves in danger to move your plot forward.
E) Exercises For Writing About Love
- Write a love letter from your protagonist to the person they love most.
- Write a love letter from your antagonist to the person they love most.
- Create a playlist of love songs for your four main characters.
- Write about the disintegration of a loving relationship. (Read 9 Ways To Set Up Believable Fictional Breakups)
- List the five things your four main characters love most.
- Describe love in concrete terms. Do this exercise for yourself and for your main characters.
- If love were a place, it would be:
- If love were music, it would be:
- If love were a person, it would be:
- If love were weather, it would be:
- If love were a smell, it would be:
- If love were a taste, it would be:
- If love were a sound, it would be:
- If love were a texture, it would be:
- If love were a colour, it would be:
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© Amanda Patterson
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