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I want to have one of my characters slowly fall in love with a boy who has liked her from the start, but I'm not sure how to

  1. Show that he likes her but not make it too obvious

and

  1. make her slowly fall in love with him.

Some background information: the book takes place in the real world where some girls have the power to turn whatever they're singing about into reality (weird concept I know). They are part of a singing group (of regular people that don't have powers) that can amplify the special girl's power. The two people that I'm talking about are around the ages 13-14 and the girl has this special power while the boy is just someone she knew from her childhood.

Edit: I probably should have clarified the book is not being told through the girl or the boy.

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  • Try watching(or reading) The Princess Bride. Wesley's relationship with Buttercup is a great example of this. May 27, 2023 at 19:02

2 Answers 2

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If I, as a reader, want to buy that two people are starting to like each other there are two things I personally like to see.

1- Pacing. Funnel those beats. If you leave one clue in each chapter, it gets stale. Feelings build over time, so start sparse and then, as the feelings come stronger, close the gap until the time it should be out in the open. People sometimes start to like each other before they know they like each other. That's attraction. feels natural.

2- Give and take. Chemistry. your readers need to buy that these 2 people actually care for one another. Or it's just one more paper-thin romance in fantasy...

One way to do this is to have the character that is slowly falling in love use the other as a reference point, as guidance. So, the person that already likes the character is being supportive, or gives a good pep talk, or has good ideas or knows just the right thing to say to lift the mood of the main character... and slowly... over time... that main character thinks of those times, those gestures, those words and feels good about it. or helps her move forward on a plot point or problem-solving.

Eventually, that could lead to "you think a lot about X don't you?" and that could be a jumping point for the main character to think "WHY" that is.

on Romance, oftentimes it works with the audience to have the Reader and the character in the story know the answer, and you are just there hoping and waiting for the main character to catch up.

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Think of the liking becoming apparent and the falling in love happening in steps, and work out what the steps are.

How can one person recognize that another person is in love with them? Make a list of the signs. Then order the signs by how unmistakeable they are. For example, wanting to spend time with someone is a weak sign, because that could be out of friendship or for some other goal (gaining the trust of someone one wants to rob). Looking at someone with a certain gaze is a stronger sign. Trying to kiss someone is an even stronger sign. Once you have this ordered list of increasingly clear clues, spread these clues over the course of your narrative: In chapter one the one person just wants to spend a lot of time with the other. In chapter two they look at them specially. And in chapter three (or whenever) they try to kiss them.

You do the same with falling in love. What are the steps of falling in love? Order them chronologically and spread them over your narrative, possible in some kind of relation to the clues for the other person's love mentioned before (e.g. parallel or slightly delayed).

If you don't know what the clues and signs are, do some research. (Please don't ask here, we will not write your book for you and such questions will be closed.)

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