Sunday, April 27, 2008

Well, Ain't That Just Perfect!

As many romance authors are women, we really know how to describe men. I love to read descriptions of bulging muscles, broad shoulders, six-pack abs, five o’clock shadows, and even tight behinds. Of course, some authors go into long descriptions of their heroines but I’m more apt to skip that part while reading and insert my characteristics there. Or at least what I wish they were.

I hear a lot of people complaining about how tired they are of perfect heroes and heroines. And I understand completely. Don’t we get tired of reading about how slim and fragile the heroine is? Or how the hero looks like Michelangelo’s David?
PLEASE! Get for real. Sure, I’m more interested in a fantasy hero than what most men look like, but let him snore, have stubby toes, or be a little rough around the edges. You get the idea.
I guess my heroines are most likely not to be perfect. They can be on the chubby side, overly tall, have a long face, stutter, or be plain looking.

If you think about it, when we’re in love, doesn’t the other person look so much better than they really do? How many times have we heard love is blind? It’s true.

So you can describe your guy as being homely but when the girl falls in love, he’s the best looking man in the world to her. And of course it can go the other way. The woman could be mousy but the guy believes her to be a goddess. All in the eyes of the beholder.

What flaws do you give your heroes and heroines?


Naima said...

I guess I've given my heroes and heroines more internal flaws than physical ones. Even though, one of my favorite books was by Johanna Lindsey where the prince had claw marks across one side of his face. And the princess loved him because, even though she was incredibly beautiful, she was scarred on the inside and could identify pain with pain. So, now that I think about it, maybe in my next manuscript I'll mingle physical with emotional flaws. Makes for a way more interesting book, not to mention conflict, conflict, conflict!

JoAnn said...

I think giving your hero and heroine physical flaws is a really hard task. It doesn't take much to cross the line from "endearing" to "gross!" I've never been able to stay on the "endearing" side of the line, so I'm afraid my characters are rather perfect physically. But I try to make up for it by giving them a few internal and emotional flaws.

Diane Richmond said...

I purposely am vague when I describe my characters. I give the basics but want to let each reader add his/her spin to what I have written. I think we do that anyway. Carla is right. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.