Sunday, 29 April 2012

Does There Always Need To Be A Love Triangle?

Why does there have to be a love triangle in every YA novel these days?

Think about it- a large number of YA novels these days have the same romantic plot/subplot of a girl having to choose between a two guys. Plus, the love triangle is usually quite typical. The first option is the 'nice guy'   who the heroine considers as more of a friend and the second option is the more attractive guy who might also represent something potentially risky.

Are love triangles that common in real life? I must admit I'm just a teenager and the couples I see in school are the only ones I know of, but I've never heard of a real love triangle. In school, there were kids who just went unnoticed and there were babes and dudes who had love polygons, not triangles. At the end of the day, nothing was serious and real love didn't exist within the limitations of classrooms and hallways. So why is it that writers need to have their teenage protagonists falling madly in love with not one, but two people at the same time?

At first I thought it was because the idea of a love triangle appeals to many people's fancy, especially girls. Most girls love the idea of having two boys fighting over them, and since it can't possibly happen in real life, they find a way to live their dream through books. Plus, a love triangle brings some edge to the storyline. You can use big words like CHOICE, DECISION and TRUE LOVE and make it appear as if the ultimate choice made by the protagonist can change everyone's lives.

All that being said, I must admit, I sometimes really enjoy these stories, if they are written the right way of course. I am still dying to find out if Laurel eventually chooses David or Tamani in the Wings series.

I decided in the very beginning that I didn't want a love triangle in 'Unexplained Disappearances'. Instead, I have a short, simple romantic subplot. Aria cares for her friend Riyan, but given the high-risk circumstances they are in, neither can express their feelings. Writing romance has never been my forte, but this time, I'm willing to give it a try.

So do Riyan and Aria get together in the end? Or do they just stay friends? As I always say, you won't find out unless you read the book.


  1. I've been in love triangles, so I don't mind them at all. I think they are very high school. At least they remind me of my high school days.

  2. Seeing as how my group of friends seemed to date from the same love pool in high school, well I can see how it pans out. But within my writing I tend to include a love triangle occasionally for the comparison. Think about--you can be in total love, but how do you know it's true love if you've never been with anyone else? That's where 3rd wheel comes into play. When the main character kisses 3rd wheel the feelings are hot and sexy, but that's all they are--they realize that what they have with the other guy is real etc. So it's fun to do that to spur on the story and give the read some "OMG she did not just kiss him after she already kissed the other guy" moments.