This is by no means an exhaustive list. It’s a selection of tale-types I am personally sick of. Do pile in and suggest others. I think we should stop telling these stories in fiction, and stop celebrating them in real life as well.
A problem is solved by killing a person, probably with guns.
A man is a total asshat, but he’s also a ‘genius’ so we should treat him like a hero and overlook his shit.
A white person turns out to be the chosen one of a non-white community. He (it is usually a he) goes on to be better at the thing important in this community than anyone raised there. He needs little or no time or training to achieve this because he’s naturally gifted.
A woman falls in love with a guy who has treated her appallingly. I might accept this as a dark and psychological piece, but please stop telling me this is romance.
A person (usually a woman or a more effeminate man) is too beautiful and good for this world, so they die pointlessly and everyone who failed them has feels.
A story in which a person is in love with two other people and is obliged to choose between them.
A white person travels to an ‘exotic’ place and discovers or does something important with little or no reference to the indigenous people. Lose extra points if the indigenous people are portrayed in a patronising way, with no reference to the culture that exists in the actual setting, or they are all played by middle aged white men.
Stories about how a woman has to change to make her attractive to a man.
Any story that hinges on one person failing to tell another person(s) something hugely important that they knew all along.
Stories in which women change their loyalty and betray their people because a male character they’ve just met is sexy.
What kinds of stories would you get rid of if you could?