Editing… Tweaking… And Romantic Comedies…

So, a lot has happened recently. Just to recap, I now have had feedback from three people about Not Famous, and I’m currently in the process of editing and tweaking the manuscript to incorporate their suggestions. It’s been a slow process, mostly because I’ve been allowing myself extra time between editing sessions to help see it from fresh eyes each time.

There’s also something else. I shared my book description with author Jon Rance to see what he thought. He sent back some suggestions, which were great. (I’ll reveal the next iteration of the book description later, btw.)  The last line which he wrote did get me thinking though…

Not Famous is a funny and full of heart romantic comedy about finding true love against all the odds.

“Romantic comedy” is not a genre I had been thinking about because I didn’t really think of my novel as a comedy. I see it as a serious story with some humor in it. Anyway, I decided to look into this “romantic comedy” genre a bit more. So, I went to Wikipedia, where it defined romantic comedy as “a genre with light-hearted, humorous plotlines, centered on romantic ideals such as that true love is able to surmount most obstacles.”

The basic plot of a romantic comedy is that two characters meet, part ways due to an argument or other obstacle, then ultimately realize their love for one another and reunite. Sometimes the two leads meet and become involved initially, then must confront challenges to their union. Sometimes they are hesitant to become romantically involved because they believe that they do not like each other, because one of them already has a partner, or because of social pressures. However, the screenwriters leave clues that suggest that the characters are, in fact, attracted to each other and that they would be a good love match. The protagonists often separate or seek time apart to sort out their feelings or deal with the external obstacles to their being together, only to later come back together.

Now, this doesn’t describe the plot of my novel by far, but it definitely still fits the basic tone and some key elements. I’ve been hung up on the word comedy a bit too much, I think. Further down I read a subsection discussing more serious-toned romantic comedies, something called a “meet cute” situation, and I’m starting to think this is actually the genre the book belongs in.

Of course, while I’ve written several lines of dialogue and situations meant to be humorous, I do think that to earn its rightful place in the “romantic comedy”  genre it might need to amp up the humor a bit. Of course, it might more accurately be considered a “romantic comedy-drama” (yeah, that’s a thing, see the entry for Silver Linings Playbook) but I think by putting in a touch more humor might make me comfortable with labeling Not Famous a romantic comedy-drama.

So, yeah… Jon Rance, you were even more helpful than you realized!

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