A few weeks ago I blogged about warming up the romance in my story here. One of the things that came out of that discussion, besides some great suggestions for enhancing the chemistry between my characters, was the realisation that I had fallen into some stereotypically thinking.
I had been envisioning Abigail as the typical gently bred young lady of the Regency who knew little if anything about men or sex before she married, especially since she had no mother around to advise her. On the flip side, I saw Michael as the traditional experienced Regency gentleman who had sown more than a few wild oats during his transition to adulthood (while hopefully remaining disease-free).
Michael and Abigail don’t really fit those roles, however, which is probably why their romance was going nowhere fast. True, Abigail is gently-bred, but she’s determined and passionate, and willing to fight to get what she wants. Michael is experienced and mature, but it turns out he’s the one experiencing the sweaty palms and racing heart over a girl he still thinks of as just a kid.
Once I stopped trying to fit them into the stereotypical innocent virgin / experienced rake boxes, their romance warmed right up.
So, have you found any stereotypical thinking in your own writing or in anything you’ve read recently? Is there any particular stereotype that drives you crazy when you encounter it?