Archetypes: The Ups and Downs

Great post> Thanks!

Broken Mirrors

As a reader and a writer, archetypes and tropes are things that I like a lot. I recognize them frequently in the fiction I take in and incorporate them into my own writing too. And I fully believe that archetypes are great–but only up to a point. So I want to talk a little about the good and bad points of archetypes and how they should be used.

First of all, let me clarify my terms in case anyone isn’t sure. An archetype or a trope (I’ll probably use the terms interchangeably here) is a common character, event, setting, or other element that recurs in different stories time and time again. For example, in a typical good versus evil story, there’s a common set of characters: the hero, the villain, the girl who the hero rescues and/or falls in love with, the sidekick or partner or friend who helps the…

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