Sunday, July 10, 2011

Calling All Heroes!

Posted by Bethany at July 10, 2011
Happy Monday All,

What do you look for in a hero? Someone larger than life? Super-Man, maybe? *EDIT as of 9:37 a.m.:  (I'm talking about FICTIONAL heroes. As Tess points out in the comments there are real life heroes that make this world a better place, and they have my respect, admiration and gratitude for what they do, but for this post I'm talking about heroes in novels, I apologize for being unclear).

  Or perhaps you're for someone a bit more "untouchable"--a little more "forbidding", like Mr. Darcy. Maybe you go for swashbuckling pirates like Captain Jack Sparrow.

One thing I was told about heroes is that they should be "larger than life".  

Heroes do have to be believable but they aren't likely to necessarily be someone you'd meet walking down the street. I don't know about you, but I've never run into Edward Cullen (or any other vampire) as I walked out of my house (maybe I wasn't looking hard enough?) I have yet to meet Mr. Darcy at the grocery store (kind of the wrong time period). Or Captain Jack Sparrow anywhere (not that I'd want to, I'd rather read about pirates, not encounter them in real life).

Last time I saw a shape shifter was...never. So, yeah, in a sense they have to be larger than life and unrealistic. But they also have to be believable, someone people can relate to. Now granted, most of us aren't going to believe that a demigod is existing in our swimming pool, like Percy Jackson, but believable in that a person can suspend their disbelief. That is, they have traits we can relate to.

Heroes have to have some kind of honor code. Something that makes them heroic. For Darcy, one of the things that made him heroic was helping Elizabeth Bennett's sister--and saying he only thought of her while doing so. That's not only heroic, but entirely romantic. (Now you men understand why we women swoon when someone brings up Fitzwilliam Darcy).

For Edward Cullen, I'd say a heroic gesture on his part was how he prized Bella's humanity. He treasured it. He didn't treat her as expendable as the other human-blood drinking vampires were prone to doing, he and his "family" treated her humanity as something to guard.

I don't know enough about Captain Jack to say what makes him heroic. 

My favorite heroes are the ones who did things because they are just so passionate over the heroine they couldn't help themselves. Yes, I'm that mushy-romantic. I'm sort of the "knight-in-shining armour" type heroes.

What defines a *edit as of 9:38 a.m.:  FICTIONAL or in a novel hero for you? (Like I said above, there's many real-life heroes I totally respect and agree that they truly DO make the world a better place, but I'm talking about fictional heroes that appear in novels, that's why I brought up Mr. Darcy, Captain Jack and Edward Cullen, rather than real-live people.  I apologize if I wasn't clear).

Have A Magnificent Monday!


Anonymous said...

My list of heroes include military personnel, police officers, fire workers (I couldn't say firemen, because there are firewomen), teachers...I think these people do an act of extreme bravery everyday. Not to mention so many others. My brother goes to Africa every summer and puts in water wells...I consider him a hero for the people there. I think there are heroes all around us...all we need do is look around.

Anonymous said...

Heroes are what make the world a better place. We are all a little safer because they are around. Of course, my real live hero is my boyfriend and hubby of 23yrs. In my books....I like 'em all! My current favorite is the protag in my 2nd novel- Ghost. He's an ole Virginia blue blood ex.spec ops. guy. Unfortunately he's been badly burned in the last novel and he's now trying to overcome his limitations while saving his best friend's sister. Love the broken men we get to save through our words!

Bethany on Monday, 11 July, 2011 said...


Ooops! I guess I wasn't clear I wasn't talking about real-life heroes, but rather heroes in novels :-)

Bethany on Monday, 11 July, 2011 said...


True enough, but like I said to Tess (and I apologize for being unclear in my post) I wasn't talking about REAL LIFE heroes, I was talking about the ones in novels (hence the reason I brought up Mr. Darcy, Edward Cullen, and Captain Jack).

Your protagonist sounds like a good hero--and I wish him the best being saved through your story. The broken characters are the ones that usually garner the most reader sympathy and it makes them "real" :-)

Bethany on Monday, 11 July, 2011 said...

P.S. To Tess: But you ARE right the people you mentioned truly are heroic and there are real life heroes like that that I truly admire and respect and am grateful for all they do.

Anonymous said...

Fictional hero, got ya.I just admitted after all these years to my husband over the weekend that I had a 'thing' for The Phantom, who used to be in the comic strips,(or maybe still is somewhere?).He had no super powers but he was a scientist who was super-fit and super-smart and handled a lot of extraordinary situations all over the world.He lived in the jungle , which was a major problem for me, but maybe with him????? LOL

I also like the Marvel animated cartoon of the 1970's (yeah, I'm old)...I particularly like Thor and his in-the-world persona of a dedicated doctor...either way, really attractive!

Bethany on Monday, 11 July, 2011 said...


I have my doubts you're old. I'm NOT likely to think someone is old. Here's one way to think of it: Aging is like fine wine--you only get better (well, I hope I get better anyway) with each year that passes.

Thor seems pretty cool. I haven't read his comic strip, but I know a little about Norse Mythology (not a lot, but a little). I want to see the movie that's out.

I'm not sure if "The Phantom" was in any of the comics I read. I can't remember.

Thanks for dropping by :-)

Anonymous said...

Ahh, I see...


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