When I was young, I loved books with heroines that were impossibly hot. I’m not sure why. Perhaps I liked to imagine myself as that hot, but, like looking at the models in the magazines, they made me feel less than. Some of the descriptions I’ve never seen a woman look like that. Of course, that was the 80s. Things have changed a lot since then.
Now, I’m not particular about how a woman looks. It’s her personality that attracts me. Maybe it’s age–and wisdom?–that’s changed my mind on heroines. I want a real heroine, one that I can relate to. She doesn’t have to be perfect. Matter of fact, I don’t want her perfect, but I don’t want a nitwit. I know many women loved Barbara Cartland, but, even in my teens, I couldn’t bring myself to read her romance novels. Who wanted to read about a heroine who had more hair than brains? Certainly not me.
What I find that draws me, in my own writing and others, is a real woman. She may be beautiful, she may be plain, she may be in between, but she’s got baggage (because she has a past and past equates to baggage of some sort), she’s a real person with warts, peccadilloes, and virtues, and she’s intelligent, even if she sometimes does stupid shit. Whatever she does, though, it can’t be out of character. If it is, the author better do an amazing job of establishing why.
Recently, I picked up a book (I don’t remember the title) and never finished it. Why? Because the heroine (and hero) did something so out of character and incredibly stupid that I couldn’t believe it and was disgusted. I deleted it off my iPad. That’s the ultimate insult from me. LOL I hope I never do that to any of my readers. I hope no one dislikes my books so much they delete them.
My heroines, so far, have ranged from jocks to archaeologists to psychics to shifters. All have had their baggage they have to sift through and they grow and change by the end of the story. Those are the heroines I like to read, and write, about.
What about you?
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