If you have been reading old and classical Romance stories in preparation to become a romance author yourself, you may be frustrated with the way women are portrayed in old literature. They are portrayed as naïve, sensitive, and a lost cause until the man comes around to save them. It is a frustrating thing for women to feel like a lost cause, especially when you want to portray a modern-day woman who has a career and ambitions. So what do you do in romance literature when you're faced with such a dilemma? The reality is the many readers actually want to see an ambitious Female Lead, who has goals and dreams.

Even though she may need a man or potential Love Story, you don't want to lead to be so insensitive and naïve that she puts everything on the line for this man. You don't want to make her unrelatable.

So how do you start writing your story and present your female lead? You want your heroine to be someone who understands what love is all about and you want someone who is strong enough to stand alone but would like someone to compliment her. That is how you're going to appeal to your female readers.

Underestimating her in the beginning

When you introduce your female lead, it's alright to make her question her own ambitions. You can write the narrative so it looks like your lead is questioning or underestimating what she's truly capable of.

This gives you something to focus on as you develop your novel. The female lead has a chance to prove herself, to both the readers and possibly to all the characters in the book. If you start out with a strong female lead, you may end up developing someone who was cold and not necessarily open to romance. That may not end well in a romance novel.

Strong is a gun

You always want to make the female lead stronger than you truly anticipate. If you make her question every decision she makes in regards to this relationship, readers could see her as weak and vulnerable. And since the majority of readers of romantic literature are women, you may not have the best reviews at the end of the day.

You want someone who can make decisions for herself, stand her ground when she doesn't agree with something, and give her intellect. You always want to portray the female lead as someone who can get along just fine without a man in her life. Don't make her dependent on a man for finances if you want her to be a strong woman.

You have to remember that a romance story is all about the different layers that these characters go through. A romance novel is not a love story that's perfect. These characters are going to be tested in all kinds of ways, including how they interact with others, possibly some jealousy issues, or even cheating and betrayals. If you have a weak female lead, she may be won over by the hero at the end of the story.

This is not the true ending of a romance novel. There has to be a mutual agreement. You want to push the boundaries but not make it a sad story in the end.

How do you portray your female leads in your stories? Do you always give her a strong personality and make her stronger than her male counterpart?