You Gotta Love 'em, by Linda Hope Lee
Recently, I was asked to speak to a romance writer's group on "How to Create a Lovable Hero." It got me thinking, and so I made a list of attributes I use in my stories. I'd like a share a few of them with you.
A lovable hero makes an emotional connection with the heroine. For example, in my April Heartwarming release, Eva's Deadline, as the story progresses, Eva learns to trust Mark enough to share a painful event from her past. He not only sympathizes but also shares a difficult problem he struggles with.
This establishing of an emotional connection proves to be a significant turning point in their relationship.
A lovable hero is altruistic. He reaches out to help others. In Eva's Deadline, Mark's volunteer work at the community center demonstrates his altruism. Eva admires him for this. She joins in, too, and serving at the Thanksgiving dinner brings them closer together.
A lovable hero is romantic. Here, I search for something he can do that is special and meaningful only to her. For example, in another of my stories, the heroine collects sand dollars. The artist hero presents her with several on which he's painted scenes of things they've done together.
A lovable hero is willing to make a sacrifice to be with the heroine. Love changes him, and what he once thought was so important now pales in comparison to being with her. In Eva's Deadline, when Mark realizes that giving up something he values highly is the only way he and Eva can be together, then that's what he will do.
Of course these aren't the only attributes of a lovable hero. Writers, how do you make your hero a man your heroine will fall in love with? Readers, what makes you fall in love with a book's hero?