Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Love Stories: Blind Love

Happy April Fool's! Mother Nature's being really funny here—it's snowing. In April. *Shakes fist at sky* Don't believe a word out there on the web (except for these ones). Wow, can't believe it's April. Big day for me: resubmissions. Ack. I'm pretending I'm not a mess. And I'm totally writing this blog post first in attempts to put off the dreaded emails I must send.

Blind Love
The Formula: Boy and Girl know each other—don't know they're perfect for each other (or at least one of them doesn't know). Boy and Girl spend a lot of time trying to date other people, accomplish something in their lives, or overcome something. Audience sits back screaming, "Hello! He's/She's RIGHT THERE IN FRONT OF YOU!" Finally, after a life-changing moment, Boy and Girl finally realize they were meant for each other all along.

Oh, this one is a hard one to pull off, I think. But when done right, it can be adorable and fun and heartwarming. Doesn't every single person sometimes think, "What if he or she is right under my nose and I don't even know it?" It's an exciting yet frustrating idea. You don't see this one as often because you have to have that right situation—the right characters who are likable enough for the audience to accept their stupidity and obvious oversight. Or you gotta make it subtle enough that the reader doesn't realize the couple is perfect for each other without heading into "reluctant love" areas.

The first movie that comes to mind: 13 Going On 30. They pull off the blind love in a believable way—in a way that makes you accept the flawed heroine. Jenna is thirteen and just wants to be popular. She doesn't realize that her best friend Matt is in love with her. After a terrible birthday disaster, she gets whisked to the future where she's thirty and has all the things she wanted at thirteen. Her life sucks; she learns lessons; she realizes she loves Matt when she can't have him (he's engaged in the future). When she goes back in time, she throws away her popular crowd aspirations and stops taking Matt for granted. Aw. CUTE.

Of course I have to go back to Austen on this one—Emma is another well done "blind love." Emma is really a rich little brat who's all up in everybody's business, but somehow we get sucked into her story because she learns a whole lot from her pathetic attempts at match making. She grows up. And when she finally realizes that Mr. Knightly is much more than a brother-in-law to her, you're happy. Austen also pulls off that "hidden guy" aspect. You don't really realize Mr. Knightly is "the one" for a while—you discover it with Emma, which is exciting and hard to do. Go Austen.

I haven't dared attempt this one yet, but it may be happening very soon. I'm scared. The idea of blind love is very close to my heart. Why? Because it's my own love story. *Sighs dreamily* I knew Nick for almost a year without a single romantic thought. I had friends telling me we should go on a date, and I'd just say, "Nah, Nick's sweet, but he's just a friend." We were pretty good friends, but my friend also had a crush on him so he was "off limits" anyway. I don't know why I couldn't see it. Okay, maybe I do. I'd just gotten out of an emotionally abusive relationship and wanted nothing to do with guys. Then one day, it was like my blindfold was taken off and it was completely and totally DUH. How had I not seen how perfect we were together? It was magical.

Sigh, blind love. Where have you run off to? Oh, there you are...right in front of me.


  1. Aw that's sweet. I am enjoying your love posts.

    I adore 13 going on 30, such a great movie.

    Love is blind is definitely a hard one to pull off well. Obviously Austen can pull off anything :)

  2. Ah, blind love. The Great Geek Hope.

  3. Adam, you literally made me laugh out loud. Nick would totally agree. His crush on my started when he heard I played Final Fantasy...I know, sexy.

  4. Yep, did this in my last novel. I pulled it off with the whole "we're just friends" thing. Sounds corny and cheesy, but it works. And they're secondary characters, so not all the emphasis is on that relationship. :)

  5. I think the only way to pull this off is to only see the "blind" person's point of view. You have to watch the romance unfold through the eyes of the person it's happening to. The author has to leave inly subtle clues for the reader so that you can believe that the character is clueless. When it's done well it's magical.

    I totally agree with Glam - having secondary characters with their own dramas helps enormously.

  6. Janey, I agree. First person would certainly help facilitate a good blind love story. You need to see their thinking, how they interpret (or maybe misinterpret) the relationship.

  7. I can relate to this. I didn't see my husband as boyfriend potential because he is three years younger than me. We were friends, then penfriends (I'd moved away) and then one day he held my hand...

    We'll have been married 30 years this June.

  8. Aww, fairyhedgehog! Aww, Natalie!

    Blind love is the sweetest of the category, isn't it?

    I also tried it with secondary characters in one of my novels. It seems easier to manage that way. Main character blind love really is hard to pull off.

  9. I haven't attempted blind love either. I like when someone (can be one person) has a clue.

  10. Aw, Fairy, that's so sweet. Yay for us, hehe. I sat next to Nick and our arms touched—I know. Wow. Instant chemistry...after a year.

    Ren, I think it is probably easier with secondary characters. Michelle said that too. I need to give it a shot sometime.

    Anne, it is fun when one of them knows. It gets all angsty and stuff.

  11. That last line is nauseatingly cute.

  12. Hehehe! I LOVED this! I'm getting ready to edit my Emma remake Emmalee after I send Persuaded to my agent (Who could also be considered a blind love--or er, maybe a love in denial, huh?) Anyway, it's great to read this, because I've thought over and over.. what is it about Emma that people Love so much!? blind love.. hmm?

    I find the hardest balance for me though, was the snobby girl that everyone loves. She was really hard, Chase on the other hand (Mr knightly) was just a dream to write. And by far, by mutual consent of my readers, my best hero so far. (even if I don't agree! LOL! I've always been a Wentworth fan myself.) jenni

  13. I think my own love story must be very boring. We met. We liked each other. We kissed. We loved each other. We married. Bleh.

    Yes, blind love does sound complicated to write. And it does kind of crossover to reluctant love, right? If only one side is blind, and the other isn't?

  14. I think for Blind Love to work you need to have some red herrings. The hero/heroine is so focused on winning someone else (or some other goal), he/she doesn't notice the true love.