Hero, Meet Heroine

I began my current WIP about three weeks ago. There I was, pleased as punch, just churning out words. I’d plotted and researched for a while before actually putting words to screen. Then, when I was 30k words into the story, I had a revelation: I was writing the story all wrong.

What had seemed like a good idea when I was plotting it out, felt wrong. I didn’t want my hero to be such an ass that readers wouldn’t like him. He still has to be an ass though. It’s part of the lesson he has to learn (you know, how not to be an ass). But the way I was writing the story, he was too hard, the heroine was too soft. Meh.

So I had to think about how to turn it around without straying too far from my planned plot. All I did was change the way the hero and heroine met. That one scene gave the story an entirely different feel and my heroine isn’t a wimp now while my hero is a dangerously sexy ass instead of just an ass. (It’s my word of the day folks, sorry.)

What did I do exactly? Well, here’s a look at what it was and what it is now:

Before
It was inevitable. When you have an outdoor table full of steaming food, some nasty animal was bound to come by and try to snatch it.
With a growl of possessive fury, Talon lunged at the cat trying to steal a piece of fish from one of his many plates.

After
A naked woman answered the door, her lips wet and swollen, eyes heavy with sated desire.
Valeria York took an instinctive step back.
“I hope you’re up for a hard ride,” the woman said in a drowsy voice. “He’s insatiable this afternoon.”

I think the second is much better. In the ‘before’ my idea was for the hero to be so insensitive, he wouldn’t help a starving animal, scaring it instead and causing the heroine to rescue it and immediately label him as an animal abuser. Yeah, I didn’t like that so much. The ‘after’ we see is just a man with too much staying power for one woman…ahem.

What do you think? And what to do you do when you realize your characters’ first meeting isn’t quite right?

5 Comments

Filed under Writing

5 responses to “Hero, Meet Heroine

  1. I like the second one much better. It’s better written – because I think you believe in the idea more and it shows in the words. 🙂

    You’re telling the story the way it needs to be told – much easier than forcing it.

  2. edenglenn

    Good for you. I’ve agonized with the same situation. A judge just recently said my hero was an ASS. Seems like its the word of the day for other people too. Actually she went on to call him a foul mouthed jerk. Evidently I evoked some emotion there. lol.

    I had to accept the fact that I tend to fuel my aggression into my male characters and portray them as jerks.

    Sometimes I find it’s not necessary to re-write the scene but editing effectively to give a softer twist.

    • Allison – Thank you, dearest. Right now though, the WIP hates me and I hate it. Stupid characters…*mumble*

      Eden – Wow, talk about some strong emotion! Maybe she knew someone like him.

  3. I have had to stop in the middle and rewrite when they met. I sometimes just chuck the entire thing and start over. For me it’s the most crucial part of the story line.

  4. In one of my WIPs I had a heroine who appeared too weak, within a male dominated world. I agonized with her introduction, but it was worth it. I like your change, to strengthen your leads.

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