Thursday, 20 February 2014

Creating the perfect heroine with Portia MacIntosh

Today I am very excited to be part of the blog tour for Between a Rockstar and a Hard Place by Portia Macintosh.


When it comes to writing the perfect heroine, it can be hard to get it just right. When you’re writing a book your leading lady needs to be realistic. Readers need to be able to relate to her and if you make her too perfect that’s not going to happen. Similarly, if you make her unrealistically flawed, no one is going to like her. Bridget Jones is a great example because she wasn’t perfect, she had her flaws and that was OK – that was normal. Nobody wants to read about a girl with a perfect life because it’s just not real. I know this is fiction we’re talking about, but chick-lit is supposed to be relatable, and real life is never perfect.

No matter what your books are about, your leading lady needs to go on a journey. By the end of your book your main character needs to have grown and learned something about herself or about life – otherwise, what was it all for?

I have two books coming out over the next two months and my leading lady in both in a music journalist called Nicole. Nicole has a great job, a pretty easy life and her friends are all rich and famous musicians. I’ve used my real life experiences working in the music industry to inspire my fiction, so Nicole gives readers a unique insight into the music biz, but she would be a pretty boring character if the entire book was about how fabulous her life was. So while Nicole has a great job and awesome friends, she is also pretty rubbish at living in the real world. She’s spend so much time around bands and enjoying the perks of their job that she doesn’t know how to function in normal scenarios. She can’t really take care of herself or manage her finances. A boyfriend isn’t on the cards because she’s used to the fleeting relationships that happen on tour, not proper commitments. She can’t even show up for work on time.

It’s all about creating a balance. I’m working on a new book at the moment and my main character is a bit of an antiheroine. This means I’m having to balance out her bad behaviour by making her a likeable person regardless – this can be tricky, because she’s a very bad girl. It’s OK for your heroine to do bad things because people do bad things all the time, just make sure it’s justified.

Between a Rockstar and a Hard Place is out 12th February, ahead of How Not to be Starstruck in March. For more information visit

A big thank you to Portia for dropping by The Love of a Good Book

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