The Leading Ladies of Lit

I’ve noticed, from reviews and speaking with readers, that we are very particular about our female protagonists. Sommer’s hesitance over trusting Austin was irksome, while Alexandra and Sydney’s unfavorable decisions were outright loathed by some.

As writers, I think it can sometimes be a struggle to achieve that balance between strength and vulnerability. As a woman, especially a woman of color, the same rings true.

We all want something different from our main characters, but the minute she starts playing hard to get or pushing our hero away, I feel the collective eye-rolls from across the contiguous United States. Sometimes, in reading other authors from across all different types of genres, I find myself doing the same.

So…what are we looking for in our leading ladies of lit? And as a woman, do you feel the pressure to be strong all the time?

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. As a reader and writer, I personally like strong women. And when I say strong, I don’t mean strong to the point that the lead woman is stubborn and irritating. I mean strong as in she stands up for herself, she’s smart, and has a mind of her own. As a writer it’s definitely hard to find that balance because you want to show vulnerability and strength and still have the character be likable/lovable. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Natasha says:

    Hello!

    I have enjoyed reading your books very much! I would have to say one of my favorite leading ladies of your books would be Tayler in “Angels and Assassins.” She was what Thalia Lake referenced too in her post above. Tayler demonstrated vulnerability and strength. She was a strong and smart woman who had a mind of her own. As a reader, you wanted Tayler to find her perfect match, which game in Gage. To me, it makes the book “sweeter,” especially a woman you want to have a happily ever after. I have put down many books where the leading lady was painstakingly annoying. Equally refreshing, it’s good to see African-American/Black women who are “regular people.” Not everyone is going to marry a billionaire or a mobster. Thank you for your awesome books! Can’t wait to read the next one 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Ms. Walker, thanks for the follow up. Awesome job, I simply just want to say that you are doing an a great job developing your characters. I feel that you being a female and the insecurities that the world helps to create. I feel that through your characters you have shown some vulnerable tendencies which makes the characters feel more realistic to me. Keep doing what you’re doing, because in the real world we can’t please everyone!!!

    Sent from Windows Mail

    Liked by 1 person

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