What is it about our heroes that make them:
And most important,
3) Worthy of our heroine
I’m in the process of revising my second book, ON THIN ICE, due out in December. One issue this story has had for me, is that Carter, my bad boy match for Penny, who is my good girl making bad choices seventeen year-old protagonist, is a bit…well…flat. Don’t get me wrong. Carter is cute, sweet, and sympathetic, but since he doesn’t get a lot of on the page time, I don’t know him well enough to fall for him.
Not that Penny does either.
Teenagers don’t always have to know the nitty-gritty depth of a person to let their hearts be swooped up and carried away. In fact, they are usually ruled by hormones, attraction, and instinct. But that isn’t enough for the fictional world of Contemporary YA Romance. We need to have a reason for our girl to fall in love with our guy.
In Heaven is for Heroes, Jordie and Alex had the benefit of a past—a friendship turned romance that was left unresolved, so they already had conflict and tension built in.
So what about characters that just meet, fall head over heels, and jump into bed right away? Where is the conflict, the build-up of tension, the oh-so-satisfying push and pull required for us to root for our couple to find their hopefully ever after?
I know there are tricks—like giving your hero a quirky habit, something about him that makes him real and more three dimensional. Maybe he’s nice to animals or shares a common emotional journey with our heroine, but how do we make him really deserve the love of a young girl who is putting her heart on the line for someone she barely knows?