21 Popular Science Fiction Tropes for Writers

Every Saturday evening, we get together as a family to watch an incredibly bad (and sometimes campy, though always bad) B-movie. Most of these fall into one of two categories: horror or science fiction. These movies are usually bad for a couple reasons: super boring and/or poor use of tropes.

(Popular Horror Tropes for Writers.)

Now, there’s nothing wrong with most tropes in any genre. A few are definitely problematic, but many are useful because they help set expectations for readers. And writers who are trope-aware can subvert those tropes judiciously to great psychological impact. Or just lean into the tropes, knowing that readers love them.

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