I know exactly what you mean, LunarSage.
Meh. I disagree quite a bit, Thufir... but I really don't want to start a huge debate that I am nowhere near eloquent enough to properly defend my stance on. I guess we'll leave it at that. *shrugs*
One-day romances occur in forum RPs because the players confuse real world time and game time. In the real world a month - or several months - can easily pass while in the RP just a single day does. Combine this long length of time in which the players get to know and become comfortable with their own and the other person's character with the opportunity to share all manner of correspondence via PMs or IMs for weeks and months and of course the two players
become extremely comfortable with each other and their characters' situation.
The weakness lies in them forgetting that for the characters, as you point out, only a matter of hours has passed.
Or perhaps its deliberate - they are here to do some smexy RP so they just skip their characters to that stage, despite it not being very believable.
I try to get around this by working timeskips into the story, usually of at least a day here and there and if I can, of some weeks. Once a month or more of the characters lives have passed, a full-blown romance (or perhaps a full-on-trust-filled D/s relationship
) is more beleivable. Time-skipping also helps you to close scenes off and start fresh ones which can keep the RP lively and interesting. You don't need to give every scene a literary conclusion. Look at how film and TV directors cut intense scenes off in mid flow in order to provide tension. You are free to end a kiss in mid-tongue or a fuck in mid-stroke and skip forwards a week, no-one says your RP must go through the alphabet in sequence.
I have just begun a 1-on-1 game that starts at about (to continue the alphabet analogy) "H". My partner and I are then splitting our posts and working forwards from "H" towards "Z" while at the same time staring at about "D" and jumping around to cover the first part of the alphabet in flashbacks.
Flashbacks generally can be another way to cover the "how we got to here" part of the RP.
Another very long-running game I'm playing has my dominant girl going on holiday for 2-weeks, renting a villa in Spain with a group of 10 established college-age friends. One of the friends has invited a younger girl and this girl, played by my writing partner is totally innocent and virginal. The game plans to slowly turning this innocent sweet thing into a painslutwhoreslave of my domme and she also becomes the pet and sex-slave of the 10 friends.
After several YEARS of RPing (with a long break) we are about 8 days into the 2-week holiday and my character just got as far as taking the girl's virginity. The game has included a number of day-long timeskips and where we are now, which seems a more realistic point in the two women's relationship, has covered only a few hours of posts... but over a week has gone by in game time.