Brainstorming Chemistry Moments For Your Characters – “Putting It Out There”

Photo by cjhallman

Photo by cjhallman

Have you ever seen a romantic moment in a movie that left you waiting for the moment when two characters would finally make the leap?

All of these moments lead up to the great moment when a romance begins. So, how do they figure out the chemistry moments for characters that leave us hanging and begging for more?

Check out this clip:

How can you brainstorm chemistry moments for your characters that keep us coming back for more?

Brainstorming Tip One:

*Brainstorm situations to use stressful moments in the character’s lives to push them toward exposing their feelings. In this NCIS Los Angeles clip, we see that Erik and Nell are faced with a case that reminds them of their own mortality. As a result, they are willing to share their emotions on the spurt of the moment.

Brainstorming Tip Two:

*Brainstorm ways to build tension in the relationship by getting them close, but not quite before they finally speak their feelings for one another. We don’t find out in the NCIS LA episode what the two of them wrote on their paper. That makes us want to watch next week, or in our case, read the next chapter. Be careful not to use this for too long. It can irritate readers. Balance is the key.

Brainstorming Tip Three:

*Brainstorm a moment in the story that pushes your character to share their feelings. Notice in this clip that Erik does something out of character to express himself. He is normally shy, but here he, “Puts it out there.” 

This is a tip I learned from Susan May Warren at My Book Therapy. Have the character do something out of character that they would never do. This is often not a romantic action, but in this episode of NCIS LA it is.

Brainstorming Tip Four:

*Brainstorm ways to dangle the carrot. When they finally discover the way they feel about each other, create obstacles to keep them from acting on it right away. 

Check out what happens at the end of this same episode:

Erik and Nell still don’t have an opportunity to act on the way they feel about each other. An obstacle gets in the way.

What movie romance is your favorite for chemistry?


About Michelle Lim

Author Michelle Lim is the Brainstorming/Huddle Coach with My Book Therapy Press and the Midwest Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers. Michelle’s romantic suspense is represented by Karen Solem of Spencillhill Associates and has gained contest recognition in the Frasier, the Genesis, and the Phoenix Rattler, winning the Genesis in 2015 for her genre. Michelle writes devotionals for The Christian Pulse Online Magazine and Putting On The New. Since her nonfiction book release, Idea Sparking: How To Brainstorm Conflict In Your Novel, through public speaking and online chats Michelle helps writers discover the revolutionary power of brainstorming to bring new life to their stories.

5 thoughts on “Brainstorming Chemistry Moments For Your Characters – “Putting It Out There”

  1. Michelle Lim says:

    I can’t just pick one. I love the chemistry in “The Proposal”, “27 Dresses”, and so many others.

  2. Liz Johnson says:

    I love the chemistry in While You Were Sleeping. And it’s the BEST that they can’t act on their feelings because she’s supposed to be engaged to his brother. It makes the ending SO sweet. Such a good payoff. 🙂 Great post today!

  3. I like the chemistry in While You Were Sleeping, too. Great ideas, Michelle!

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