I re-discovered this week that I have a major character flaw. A fondness for those cookies that my daughter has sold once a year for nine years. You would think by now I would understand that I cannot be trusted with a box of those things. I keep telling myself they are for a great cause and that’s why I continue to buy them, but am I lying to myself?
If I were in a contemporary romance, I would be the almost overweight heroine that gets snowed in with boxes of the one thing she can’t resist. Oh wait, no maybe that’s reality!
Characters need flaws. They are not interesting if they are perfect. I’m reworking my first book now, one of the reasons is my hero is too perfect. Can you imagine that, the perfect man? Sure my husband comes close to perfection but we are talking books here and the characters have to grow. They need to have learned something on their journey and changed for the better. My protagonist has plenty of issues, she almost needs a therapist. But somehow it’s taken me longer to learn how to develop the hero’s shortcomings.
As my writing has grown, so have my skills at assigning character flaws. In Highland Deception, my hero’s great flaw is on the first page of the book! My heroine’s is not far behind. Their defects feed off of each other and they must learn to overcome them in order for a Happily Ever After to take place.
Will I ever learn to overcome my current flaw? I think I learned a lesson, but I’ve said that before. Am I doomed to make the same mistake year after year? Those evil little cookies keep calling my name.
What do you think makes the best character flaws in the romances you’ve read? Jealousy, self doubt, greed or a phobia? I would love to hear from you.
Is there a recovery group for that? How could I not be in love with what is supposed to be the most romantic day of the year?
I think romance is directly related to either the time or the thought put into the effort. I am sure there are plenty of people that put lots of time and effort into planning a special day. But here is my take on the commercialized version of the holiday.
- Stopping at the gas station or grocery store to pick up flowers, balloons and chocolate say to me, “Honey, I did not think of you until the last minute.” And, “I did not really think about what would make you happy. I did what society expects me to do.”
- The giant teddy bear on tv or the chocolate scented one at the grocery store (yes they really do exist) are just plain creepy. Men, do you really want your woman snuggling with a stuffed animal instead of you?
- Okay, I know most women love flowers. Maybe I’m crazy, but does anyone else have this problem? I can’t see the people on the other side of the table I want to talk to? I’m constantly moving them from location to location to get them out of my way!
- Chocolate. Yes I do love chocolate, but I also love fitting into my clothes.
- Wine. Maybe that’s the answer. No complaints there. But if you drink enough, you could probably forget about the lack of emotion behind your “pick up on the way home from work” gift.
One romantic thing my husband did recently was tell me he was going to take the day off from work just to spend it with me. It was not forced upon him by a manufactured holiday. It was genuine and completely unexpected. I look at that as my Valentine’s Day, because who out there with kids gets to spend the day alone with their significant other anyway? And if you are able to make it out, it’s to an overcrowded restaurant with overpriced specials.
And ladies, what do you do for your men? I don’t think the holiday is marketed as much toward pleasing them. I usually make mine his favorite meal (which takes three hours to prepare).
I would love to hear other’s opinions. Please give me your thoughts on Valentine’s Day. I know it must have some redeeming qualities. Please tell me why you love it. 🙂