If I said my hero looked like Gerard Butler, as a reader I would think you'd attribute certain personality traits to that hero based on what you've seen Gerard Butler do in the past, whether as himself or one of the characters he's played.
Am I nuts in thinking that?
Maybe. But in the spirit of the theme, let's imagine who could play Rob from Underneath It All. Here's the skinny on Rob:
- professional hockey player
- 5'9", 210 pounds (aka stocky)
- olive skin tone
- dark brown hair
- brown eyes
- Italian descent
I found a guy for Rob's cover. This is him:
What do you think? How did I do?
The reason I liked this "Rob" was the facial expression. Rob, though a sweetheart, has a bit of "I'm hot and I know it" to him, and the eyes, the little smirk etc on this guy capture that perfectly. I can't think of an actor who would give me the same impression.
My heroines are even harder. I know what they look like, but I tend to describe my heroes more than my heroines. I guess the way I look at it, is -- most of my readers are female. They want to hear about the man, not the woman who's going to steal their book boyfriend away from them, as all heroines do.
Do you prefer, as a reader, to draw your own conclusions or do you enjoy having the author compare him to a real-life person when describing him in the book? I'm curious to hear your answers!