Girls Write Out
Friday, August 05, 2011
It takes so many things to build a novel from the ground floor up. To me, the thing I need most in order to visualize my novel is to know my characters--and I need a hero and heroine. Somewhere, someway, during the novel they are attracted to each other, they have some misunderstandings, they are drawn even more closely, and they come to a place in their relationship when they're sure they'll have to go their separate ways. But in the end they know they're in love. They belong together, and all is right in their world, and in the reader's world.

I've never been a true romance writer. I mean, I know some romance writers who can draw me into their worlds and keep me reading. I like to read a good romance. Unfortunately, I can't write straight romance. I bore myself to death, and would probably bore the poor readers who had the bad luck of trying to read one of my romances. If I write a good suspense with romance and some medical characters, I know I'll be engrossed, and then so will my readers.

My editors have recently asked me to write half romance and half suspense, so I'm digging more deeply into the romance and find I actually enjoy it. I have fun putting hero and heroine personalities together, draw them closer, let the reader see how much they belong together.

Even though I'm not a romance writer, I typically prefer to read a novel with romance in it. It gives the story more flavor, and draws me to the characters more completely.

If you write romance, or include romance in your writing, or in your reading, what are some of your favorite hero-heroine combinations? Movies? Books? Where do those characters come from for you?

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Hannah Alexander  
posted at 1:00 AM  
  Comments (6)
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At 11:59 AM, Blogger Barb said...

I like the hero and heroine to be genuine, with hang ups and struggles like the rest of us. Focusing on the physical beauty of the characters is a turnoff for me.

At 12:21 PM, Blogger Carla said...

I agree totally with you Barb!

At 3:29 PM, Blogger Rockin' Ruby said...

I enjoy strong character and wit in both the hero and heroine. I agree with Barb as well :)

At 11:18 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

And I agree with all three! I need the hero and heroine to have more beauty inside than outside, no matter how beautiful they are. And I need conflict to keep me interested. I need to be able to identify with the characters, which certainly means they aren't perfect. And wit. Even humor. I love my characters to not take themselves too seriously.

At 1:44 PM, Blogger Cyndi said...

And I totally agree with all of you! As my church's librarian, I've had to make a policy on romance books and I came up with some guidelines for us... namely, that the romance shouldn't be the over-riding focus of the story. Give me another reason than romance for reading the book. I love your books for that reason! The medical and/or suspense aspects (or historical in others) along with what y'all have already said make a hit in my book. :)

Oh! And as to favorite hero/heroine combinations... some that pop to mind are Elizabeth & Mr. Darcy, Emma & Mr. Knightly, Cheyenne & Dane... :0

At 1:50 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

All right! Cheyenne and Dane made it! That's good news. Coming from a church librarian, that's great news indeed!


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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

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