I love a good heroine, don't you?
Of course, writing one is easier said than done. Especially as what makes a good heroine is so personal to each reader and it's so easy to do one wrong thing and then *poof* there goes the reader's sympathy.
I've had a few different types myself - the young, trying to find out what it's all about, Alfie, heroine, the older I'll use my wiles to get what I want heroine and a I won't be told, damn you heroine. My latest heroine is my favourite though. Josie is--well she's a lot of things; smart, sassy, sexy, hard to catch and a danger to anyone who crosses her. She was also a complete blast to write.
Anyway, it got me to thinking about where I got my ideas for heroines, my influences. I can remember the first female character that really made an impression on me. Servalan. Which may seem a little odd because she was actually the Bad Guy, er, Girl. Supreme Commander of the Terran Federation no less. Pretty impressive for the Seventies. What impressed me most at that tender age was that she wasn't just the Bad Girl - she did what she wanted, when she wanted to, and she had fun doing it. Blake's 7 was pretty good to its female characters. Jenna was second for me-smuggler and one of the best space pilots in the galaxy, she had a cool head in a crisis and in fact the only one who could fly the ship when the computer conked out. Dayna was a weapons expert and famous dissident, and sexy as hell.
In fact the whole series made a big impression on me (not just that it gave me my love of snarky anti-heroes in Avon *swoon*) despite the wobbly sets and shabby special effects. I grew up watching these women, seeing that they were as capable (or more so sometimes) than the men, but were still sexy. I think it's safe to say that those women helped shape who I am, because all of a sudden it seemed possible for women to be like that in real life too. It never occurred to me to be anything else.
So, who were your heroines growing up? What influence did they have on you?
Julia Knight writes fantasy with excitement, adventure and dollops of romance. Her latest release, Ten Ruby Trick, is out today from Carina, and is a tale of pirates, magic and mayhem. You can find out more about Julia here.