Tuesday, September 7, 2010

My new favorite bad boy

As you know we just had a long three day weekend pass.

Mine was wonderful, thank you very much for asking.  Hope yours was great too.

One of the things I was really looking forward to was my extra day off this weekend because I was convinced that I would have the time to explore the relationship I am having on the side.

No, I am not cheating.  Not really.  Or at least not in the traditional sense of the word.  

I am talking about my story.  And the leading character Seth.  I love Seth-right down to the bone love him.  He is the guy I dreamed about when I was a little girl.  He is dark, with a wicked sense of humor.  He has a code of honor that is so deeply ingrained from his military days.  He works hard and plays harder.  He is a bad boy who embodies the idea of what an alpha male is supposed to be.  Get it?  I.  Love.  This.  Guy.

Okay, so whats the problem?  I have tried on three different leading ladies.  Not one of them fit.  How do I write a leading lady who would be his match or his equal in some way that would work?  My problem is simply, none of them are good enough for him.  They come across as two dimensional and unlikeable. 

That's right folks I am stuck.

Then this weekend it dawned on me.  I think I am jealous of them.  I love spending time with Seth in my head.  I have created this guy and no female character has been able measure up.  Plus I don't think I want anyone to be good enough for Seth?  Have I completely gone around the bend?

Tell me what you do when you find yourself in this type of a situation?  Because I do not want to find myself obsessing over Seth and his bad boy ways.


Karla Nellenbach said...

Oh, I feel for you. Believe me I do. I run into the same problem from time to time and I end up hating my MC because I start to think that she just doesn't appreciate my boys the way I do. The only advice I can give is when you get stuck like that, give your MC a characteristic of yours that you'd think Seth would gravitate to most. If there's a pinch of you in the MC then maybe you won't be so jealous of her...considering she's you only on paper :)

Alyson Peterson said...

I agree with Karla. I get too attached to the men in my books. So much so that their love interests have to have me in them or I get irritated with them and do something mean like knock them off mid book.

Candyland said...

Karla said it. That way you get the best of both worlds:) Or just keep listening to Little Sister until an idea hits!

Linda G. said...

Yup. What they said. Your heroine shouldn't BE you, but should at least be somebody you can identify with readily. That way you'll write her sympathetically enough for your readers to identify with in some way, too.

Patty Blount said...

How about this: think about Seth's story. What's happening to him? We know he's an alpha male, ex military with a code of honor. But what are you going to do to him?

Will he raise the child of the soldier who died in front of him? Perhaps "she" is the child's mother. Will he head up the research team working on robotic limb replacements for stricken vets? Then, "she" becomes the bean-counting paper-pusher he must convince to let him run with his ideas (and ideals).

Don't try for an equal; try for an opposing force. If he has a wicked sense of humor, maybe she does not. If he has a code of honor, perhaps she is a small-bit crook. If Seth is the alpha male, maybe "she" is the alpha female, and butting their heads together for control becomes the central conflict in your story.

It's fun playing what-if games. I'm sure you'll find the perfect complement to Seth's wickedness.

Laura Pauling said...

I've written middle grade so I haven't had to deal with this. But what about his opposite? A ditzy blond who is messy, but has a heart of gold underneath. :)

LReneeS said...

My weekend was pretty good, thanks.
In response to your question on my blog, yes I will be posting the cover once it's finished. I always do that for anyone who is interested and passing by.

Sorry to hear you're struggling. I laughed when I read that you're in love with your MC because I was thinking, "Where is she going with this post" and then you just put it so simply it was funny.
I think the lead lady should be somebody perhaps totally opposite of Seth. Or perhaps the lead woman could be somebody that Seth cannot stand but still has to get along with. Do you know what I mean? I've worked with a lot of MC man and women relationships; if you need any extra help just email me and I'll be more than happy to try my best to help you:)

Please keep me updated on your progress, though I'm sure you will.

Happy writing,

Jeannie Moon said...

You've heard this before, but I'll say it again...find the piece of you that appreciates Seth and embed it in your FMC. She can have her own life, personality and hair color, but there has to be something you two have in common. My best friend and I are very different people, but we married guys who are very similar. Figure out what you love about Seth, and make her love that too. Finding common ground will help.

Kelly Breakey said...


You guys rock! Thanks for all of the great recommendations. Last night when I sat down to write nothing was working, but I think I have spent so much time working on who Seth is (he is actually a take off from a boy I knew growing up with all the good stuff from the hubs thrown in) that I have made him larger than life.

So I am going to start over with just concentrating on who Sara is and her backstory for the time being and see how that turns out.

Thanks again for all of the great recommendations!