Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Why most heroines in romance novels are YOUNG

Has anyone noticed the lack of middle aged romance novel heroines? My opinion is that most readers are middle aged, and want to live vicariously through a YOUNG heroine. What fun would it be to relate on a physical level with a heroine your own age?

If you're me...NONE! I want to remember the time when I was young, carefree, NO KIDS, no wrinkles, no gray hair, no body parts that are south of the equator when they used to be north, etc. My first heroine in TCH is young young young! Naive too. Gotta love ignorance, it is truly bliss. She does have to do a lot of growing up the hard way, but don't we all?

Now book 2....Josephine is a few years older, and far more wiser to the ways of the world. She didn't lead a sheltered life, as Margaret in TCH did. She's still got all her body parts in the right region though! That takes us to book 3. I think I mentioned Duncan McCue. He is a more mature hero, hence the need for a mature heroine. Lady Victoria Sinclair, Margaret's newly widowed mother, is that heroine. She will be the middle-aged woman that the rest of us would strive to be. Slim, beautiful, and with NO STRETCH MARKS! Not even sure I will give her any gray hair.

I tried to explain comments from my previous post to my husband (the part about all the men being well-endowed raised an eyebrow). Romance novels are fairy tales for us grown-ups. By the time we hit our late teens, most of us are disillusioned females. Where the hell is Prince Charming? Who beat us to him? WTF? Enlightenment about the way the world works is often a depressing thing. Not that there aren't some fabulous guys out there, just not many of even the best ones would measure up in EVERY way to a hero in a romance. Face it, we all have flaws, men and women.

I suppose I am wallowing in my self-pity and mortality as yet another birthday has arrived. Why they always seem so depressing to me, I can't quite pin down. Not sure if it's being faced with your own mortality, or the fact that I have not accomplished my elusive dream of becoming published yet.

This birthday I am going to take control. My goal is to have TCH not only revised, but in the grubby, money-hungry hands of an agent, who has signed to represent me, knowing that I may not be the next Nora Roberts, but at least I can crank out palatable historical romance novels that will sell. I have read and read (yes, Mel, I also finally got that part of class....READ WHAT YOU WRITE), and I can tell you, some of the drivel that makes it into print is not worth the ink on the paper!

Having said that, I definitely know what I want to write, and what I don't! My revisions will fix a few problems, such as character development that was sorely lacking. My later characters seemed to develop on their own, the more I wrote, the easier it became, but WOW! Those first dozen or about lacking character development on my hero! UGH! I wondered why everyone who read it liked Frederick better than Patrick(hero)...and let's not even talk about Duncan McCue (okay, just a quick line about how hot he is, and how much hotter he's gonna be as a pirate...ARG!)

Well, I certainly feel so much better. It's good to be able to talk to yourself! LOL Onward and upward we go! Now that I have this written for all the world to see, I better get busy and start making those characters POP! What scares me is when you submit to an agent/publisher, they want a query, synopsis, and approx. the first 3 chapters, which in my case, amount to a steaming load of dog....well, you get the point!

Time to make the first equal to the last chapters!

No comments: