Sometimes we’ll hear writing advice like “avoid clichés,” but what does that mean when it comes to story tropes? After all, while clichés are usually considered bad, tropes can be downright helpful.
In other words, there’s likely more nuance in that typical “avoid” advice that we should understand. For instance, if tropes can sometimes be helpful, how do we tap into that helpfulness?
Most writing advice, no matter how eye-rolling, contains a kernel of truth, but there’s also a risk of taking the advice too far. Let’s take a closer look at clichés and tropes, and how we might make them work for us.