Help Wanted: Romance writer in desperate need of new ways to describe hero and heroine's hair is looking for creative solutions from her readers.
I've written about my weak areas as a writer. One of them is setting. I know I need to weave it in, but it's not my favorite thing to write about. I have friends who love to write about locations. They can wax poetic about rooms, interiors and exteriors. Me? I have to remind myself to layer that stuff in cause I'm happy being in my people's heads.
Another area I'm weak in is the clothing department. What the heck are these two people wearing? And why? I honestly could care less about their clothing choices, but I know I have to put them in something. They can't be naked throughout the entire book. Sure, in bits and pieces it is okay, but then that has to be part of the natural progression of their story. I confess. I'm not a clothes horse--I had to go to Canada to visit my BFF before I went shopping. I trusted her to put me in great clothes. It is NOT my forte at all. I may have to hire her as a consultant when I finally do publish a book :-).
And here is another sad truth: the hero and heroine's hair has become an issue for me. The first book was easy because I used my hair color. Blond. I go to that one a lot. My heroine usually has blond hair. I know blond hair. I am trying to branch out to other colors, but I don't know what it is like to be a redhead or a brunette. I only know blond.
Help! Does hair color impact the personality of the heroine? What colors do you go to when you describe your heroines' hair color? Are they similar to your hair color or your friends? Share your secrets with me. I need a gorgeous auburn hair colored heroine. Or one with hair the color of a copper penny. What about a sleek brunette? A sable headed beauty? A rich caramel colored mane of hair? How does that compare to a honey blond?
My guys usually have tousled, slightly brown hair with gold tips. They have hair that reminds me of a man who is slightly on the wild side. You know the guy that rides a motorcycle and has windblown, wavy hair that begs for a woman to slide her hands through the locks. Sigh. I lean to a bit of curl in the hair. A bit of wildness. I don't think I've written about a sleek, dark haired hero. I've got one in the works, but brooding dark haired heroes don't often come to mind. I like my guys to be mavericks on the move.
What about you? What hair color choices do you have for your heroes? I wonder if readers prefer to read about the kind of guy that attracts them (now you know my type) or if all that matters is what is in the dude's head and how he treats the heroine. I remember my first book. I based the hero loosely on Viggo Mortensen. Lord of the Rings had just been released. Honestly, was he not beautiful in that movie? Oh my goodness I could watch him play Aragorn on a daily basis. What an amazing hero. Sigh. Oddly enough my BFF read the book and she had a different image come to her mind. Richard Gere! Granted, Richard is a hottie and on my hero wall of inspiration so I guess he bled into the pages.
Do readers just superimpose their own visual on top of the one writers try to create? Given my imperfect scientific data point--one--I believe so.
The thing is does hair matter? Does the color matter? Does the length matter? Will a short-haired, gamin heroine who is built like a pixie or Tinkerbell evoke different reader responses than a long-haired tall and curvaceous blond like Katherine Heigl? You tell me. I wonder about that. What about dark haired beauties versus blond bombshells? Will a dark, brooding hero with black hair the color of night give a different kind of ooh la la shiver to the reader than a hero with long, slightly unruly chestnut colored hair that looks like it was dipped into sunshine? You tell me.
Of course they're all beautiful, gorgeous, ruggedly handsome, broodingly attractive--they're perfection on the page. But they aren't perfect on the inside. They're flawed, afraid, needing to grow, needing each other more than they know before they can feel complete. Isn't that what a reader really is looking for in a hero and a heroine? The internal journey toward each other?
You tell me. And if you've got any tips about hair that I can use in my stories, please share!