Heroes are such a boring lot to write. Good intentions waving in the air, they swoop in and save the day with style, grace and not a hair out of place.
I’d rather deal with scruffy no-gooders who stumble into tough spots and survive by the skin of their teeth. If they happen to drag another poor, trapped soul out of the quagmire with them, so be it. They don’t mind giving a bloke a break, but they’re not going to go out of their way to do it.
Enter the “Significant Other.”
Equally flawed but often more even-tempered, they are tasked with recognizing the diamonds in the rough. A tough, dirty, frustrating job, the Significant Others put some serious wear on their own tires trying to make their relationships work.
In the end, the Ruffians and the Significant Others are as likely to fall in to each other’s arms due to sheer exhaustion from fighting as from a sense of Disney-like destiny.
This is my formula for writing a romance. Quirky, off-beat but real.
Bottom line: Don’t be afraid to find your own formula. Be imaginative. Be you. It might be quite surprising how well it will work… and sell.