Sunday, June 16, 2013


Welcome to RWA/NYC's Hero Blog Tour.
Join us every day from June 14-25 for a new look at Heroes.

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By Jean Joachim

When crafting a hero in a romance book, I call on my own desire, what kind of hero would I like to read about? The character comes to me rough and I sand him down, smooth out his edges, as the image of my ideal hero gets blended with who this guy needs to be for the story.

As a romance writer, I’d say a hero is superhuman with a few human imperfections thrown in to keep him almost real. A hero must be protective of his lady. Who wants to read about a wimpy guy who lets the world run roughshod over his woman? Sure as heck not me! A hero doesn’t have to be gorgeous, but being handsome never hurts. While he doesn’t have to be tall, he should be taller than the heroine…and smart! All my heroines love brainy men…and so do I!

I love a man with a sense of humor, so I try to make my heroes funny and able to laugh at themselves, at least occasionally. My hero must be a man who listens to the heroine, though I know this is a great challenge for flesh and blood men. If the hero isn’t listening to the heroine, then I’m closing the book.

A thoughtful gift from the hero, not necessarily something expensive, endears him to me. When my hero, Quinn Roberts, from RED CARPET ROMANCE, gives Susanna a basketball because she’s good at it and doesn’t have one, he’s carved out a special place in my heart.

A touch of jealousy, like a pinch of clove in a good recipe, makes the hero real to me. If he doesn’t care enough to be jealous, then he’s lost me. On the other hand, if he’s so jealous he gets easily enraged, he scares me and again, I close the book.

When it comes to sex, it gets a tricky. My hero must be an experienced lover, but not a man-whore. If he’s sleeping with every woman who walks by his cave, then I’m not interested. So where does he get all his experience? From women he knew before he met my heroine. He must be a lover who’s tuned in to her responses, paying attention and remembering what turns her on. If he was once a womanizer, he must give that up once he falls for my heroine. Can’t have her overwhelmed by jealousy or coming down with STD, either!

And he must have foibles, make mistakes, screw up from time to time. He can’t be doing everything perfectly 24/7. If he is, my heroine is going to feel he doesn’t need her and hate him for being so much better than she. Imperfections make him more loveable.

Crafting heroes tests a writer. Knowing how perfect to make him, how imperfect to make him is challenging. Blending your ideas with your character’s persona reminds me of mixing the perfect Cosmopolitan. In either case, the end result is thrilling.♥

Jean Joachim is the author of numerous books, including SUNNY DAYS, MOONLIT NIGHTS; NOW AND FOREVER; and THE MARRIAGE LIST. Her latest book, MEMORIES OF LOVE, is part of her Hollywood Hearts series. To learn more about Jean, visit her website or her blog at Friend her and follow her at and @jeanjoachim.


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  1. Hard to create and hard to find the heroes in our lives but I am ever watchful. Thanks.

    1. So true! Once you do find a few heroes in life, they will lift your spirits and perhaps bring another kind of happiness as well. Lol!

  2. Great post. and so true. Creating a good hero is so very important, and so much fun!

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Nancy. Yes, it's fun to craft a good hero.

  3. If only we could craft real flesh and blood men to our own specifications! :) But I agree; we need just the right mixture of perfection and imperfection to make the "perfect hero."

    1. You are so right, Lis. If we could make our own real life!! Thanks for stopping by.