Writing Tip 34: Fictional Male Tropes

If you’ve read tip 33 you would’ve already known the definition of tropes but if you haven’t then I’ll write it here as well but don’t get mad if its redundant information if you’ve read tip 33 already. Sorry not everyone reads these tips in order. So you can skip it if you’ve read it or read it again to refresh your mind.

The term trope in the literary community has come to have a creative meaning. Its literal definition is the use of figurative language for artistic effect. However, now the term trope has come to be commonly defined as recurring literary and rhetorical devices, motifs or cliches in creative works.

Males should be written to reflect their role in the story. For example, the MC shouldn’t have arrogant, rude, or mean qualities if those characteristics doesn’t fit the scene. He shouldn’t be written as a douche bag all the time to everyone including his love interest.

Although, having them not instantly fall for the other is a great concept and even better when there’s tension between them. However, it shouldn’t be rude, mean, or disrespectful.

Below are some male tropes that has me rolling my eyes.

1. The ugly villain

Why does the villain has to be hideous. Also, why does the villain has to have terrible and disgusting qualities?

I as a reader want to love to like the villain because evil people usually have qualities that reel others to them.

Usually the villains in books are hideous and have nasty and terrible personalities that no one wants to be around them.


2. The rich stalker guy

Somehow authors makes it seem okay that because this MC is rich and handsome that being a stalker is also okay.

And somehow, the love interest is intrigued by the stalkerish behavior. Girl run, he’s psycho and this isn’t love is infatuation to the next level.

3. The perfect man

The strongest, smartest, tallest, handsome man in the story. He’s the kind of guy that he doesn’t have to workout to have muscles. Doesn’t have to have a college degree to be eloquent or intelligent. Doesn’t need any techniques or pointers on anything because he’s the jack of all trade and can’t do no wring.

He’s too perfect for his own good and is the only handsome man in the story. Often times he’s the only man in the story that every girl wants.

4. Too emotional

These are the guys that flip out for no reason or for the smallest reasons. They go from 0 to 60 in 1 millisecond. They throw chairs, punches, kicks, tables, you name it they probably smashed it already.

It’s fine to have anger and rage when the situation calls for it but at every turn of a page he’s throwing a temper tantrum gets old, unrealistic, and ridiculous.

It reminds me of this 90’s telenovela called El Premio Major where one of the MC’s played by Marcelo Buquet would get overly upset at everything. He played this role in every scene and in every telenovela he played.

Being emotional over a death is fine but because something is not going your way is not cool at all.

Throwing things around does not make you manly it makes you seem like a spoiled brat.

5. Can’t get right

This is the guy who seems to do everything wrong, does not believe in his capabilities of being the one, whines about everything, and his sidekick is the character that basically does everything.

He just doesn’t have the qualities but yet he’s the MC

6. He doesn’t do anything

I read this book last year where the MC didn’t know how to do anything. He entered in an archery contest and he couldn’t use a bow and arrow. Yet, he won the contest. He wasn’t physically fit, clever, or good with his hands, but he was the MC and all the girls liked him.

7. The pretend womanizer

The guy that says he slept around with a lot of women but its never shown to have done. Only that its mentioned by his best friend a lot but we never see it.

8. The friendless guy

This is the loner guy. The guy that doesn’t need anyone and can do everything by himself. He usually has a pet which by the way found him and not that he actually adopted a pet. This guy also has a bad attitude and is rude. He probably was heart broken or something drastic happened in his past.

He also has negative emotions and his character is usually the strongest in the story but he doesn’t care about anything.

9. The clueless

I know this is often times seen in women tropes but I have read about some clueless male characters too.

The most obvious things are happening and he can’t figure out what to do, what to say, or how to exist for that matter.

This guy is so lost and out of tune with himself and his surroundings that is so bizarre how he became a character let alone the MC with a love interest who is also not the sharpest tool in the shed.

10. He’s just flat

This is the character solely written to fill a spot either, the comedian, clever/wise, witty, or sidekick. Readers know nothing about him or what he does outside of when he enters the chapter and we don’t hear from him again until the next encounter.

We don’t need a backstory to every character but if this character appears many times in the story then he needs at least some background to his existence.

These are some male fictional tropes I found annoying. Let me know in the comments which ones I’ve missed.



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