Tuesday, July 8, 2014

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?


20 comments:


  1. A lovable hero is a hero who loves the heroine over all else... even his dog!

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  2. I love a hero with a strong sense of humor. There are so many times when you can't do anything about an impossible situation but laugh at it. I also love the altruistic hero. I'd follow him to hell and back.

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    1. A sense, of humor, yes. I will add that to my list. Thank you, Muriel!

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  3. I love a sense of humor, too. Humor is my coping mechanism, so I'm drawn to that in others as well. I also like thoughtfulness in a hero--and not just the obvious like flowers or candy. But something that is truly full of "thought." And is all about the heroine--like Eva's sand dollars.

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    1. Thanks for your comment, Carol. I certainly agree about the thoughtfulness being something special to the heroine. That's what makes it truly romantic.

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  4. What makes me fall in love with a book's hero:
    That he doesn't come across as perfect. That sometimes he will be a jerk to others, but then later realizes he shouldn't have been. That if he messes up he admits it - if not then but definitely later.

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    1. Absolutely! This attribute was on the part of my list that I didn't share because it would've made the blog too long. But, yes, the hero is willing to admit when he is wrong. Thank you, Marcie, for seeing that it got included!

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  5. For me a hero isn't always perfect.he may be diffucult or hurting inside but he just has that special something that draws the heart and touches the soul.great post

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  6. Thanks, Eleanor. I like your reminder that the heroine needs to relate to the hero, too. It works both ways.

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  7. Great points. We know so little about men's emotional reactions to things that we have to guess a lot. Younger men are more in touch with their softer sides I think. I wonder if it's because many have decided to help out with raising the children now.

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  8. Good food for thought, Roz. Thank you!

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  9. Great list of hero attributes. I'm listing those to keep in mind for my heroes. I'm with Muriel and Carol. I like a sense of humor also. Thanks Linda

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    1. You're welcome, Sandra. And my list is growing longer as a result of this discussion.

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  10. My hero needs to have a sense of humor and a moment of selflessness. I kind of like a guy who is rough around the edges but has a heart of gold underneath!

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    1. I see that humor is ranking high on nearly everyone's list. Interesting. Thanks for your comment, Amy.

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  11. My perfect hero had better make me laugh!

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  12. Great list! Altruistic, selfless, humorous, loves animals, lovable, sympathetic...those are all characteristics that make me love a hero :).

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  13. Again, a great list. I want my heroes to be wounded. (So the heroine can 'fix' him.lol) That and a great sense of humor and to be willing to sacrifice something for the heroine.

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