Are you sure you’re original? I asked an agent, who will remain nameless, the most overused, overwrought storylines and openings. Here’s the list–
1. Bad Weather creates problems for protagonist
2. Protag wakes up from a baaaddd dream, or even a good one
3. Protag is standing on a battlefield or hill overlooking the wreckage
4. Protag wakes up drunk/hung-over and doesn’t remember what happened the night before
1.Girl loves her boyfriend/husband. Gets pregnant. Is thrilled & happy to tell him, but he complains about money or acts like a bachelor-cad and girl decides not to tell him. Drama ensues.
2. Girl feels like an outcast. She’s clumsy. She’s kinda average pretty. Other girls are mean to her because they’re either A.) jealous of her since the hot boy likes her for some God-forsaken reason or B.) she’s new in school and threatens their turf
3. An orphaned witch/vampire/werewolf discovers they are a witch/vampire/werewolf and then commences to uncover their parents’ deaths and how they’re linked with the all-mysterious dark half.
4. There is at least one character in your novel where there is a god/angel/demon in disguise to deliver information or carry any weak plot points
5. Boy meets girl. Boy is super hot and arrogant, withdrawn, mysterious. Girl is tough as nails outwardly, but is all warm goosh inside and a sex goddess in bed who just wants to be loved.
6. Protag is a farmhand with mysterious parentage…
7. Boy/Girl is being chased the entire novel as they try to uncover a sacred lost relic, encrypted with the secret to immortality
8. Girl/boy is a have-not in a dystopian society, which seeks to control their every thought, their every move. Boy/girl challenges authority and by their disobedience ultimately takes down the ruling class.
If you fit into one of these categories, never fear! You can always REWRITE to make your novel breathtaking, original, A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! Ahh, but how does one do this? Stay tuned for OVERDONE PLOTLINES & WHAT TO DO ABOUT THEM (part two).
P.S. Are there any other trite storylines or openings you have noticed? Do tell.