The force is the element in a romance novel which won't allow the hero and heroine to simply walk away from each other, or to shrug and say, "That's the way some people are" and pay no more attention. Because really -- if a man and a woman honestly annoy each other as much as the usual hero and heroine in a romance, they'd run... unless they absolutely couldn't.
There are three main kinds of forces. Most romances use one of these three types to keep the hero and heroine in proximity long enough to fall in love:
1. The hero and heroine need each other so badly they can't just walk away.
She owns the business but can't run it; he has the expertise but no cash.
He needs a wife to keep his job; she's the manager of a temp agency who's trying to find him the perfect woman.
He needs her to pose as his fiancee to cement a deal; she needs money to secure the future of her sick aunt.
2. Either the hero or the heroine has a logical and valid reason for forcing the other into the situation.
He believes she's defrauded a charity and demands that she make it right.
Her job is at stake unless she can convince her boss that he can't afford to fire her because her connections with the hero are too powerful.
His wedding has been called off and he's not willing to pay the bills; she's the wedding planner whose reputation is at stake if the bills aren't paid.
3. Outside influences conspire to keep them in close proximity.
They work for the same company and are assigned to a joint project.
They are isolated by storm or accident (marooned on desert island, stuck in a cabin in a blizzard, etc.)
They're family members who can't avoid each other (step-siblings, cousins).
This exercise is copyrighted material and is offered for the individual's own use. Further distribution or sale is not permitted without permission of the copyright holder. Copyright 2013 Leigh Michaels.
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