|Researching in Italy|
Some of you may have followed my recent FaceBook posts of a quick trip to Europe. Interestingly some of the photos that provoked the greatest interest were the pics of ice creams enjoyed along the way. What does that say about romance readers? Possibly that we're women of great taste who know the importance of a treat now and then.
Now I've returned home and am starting to turn my mind to my next story. Last night I was mulling over the question of what my next hero would be like and, in my slightly jet-lagged brain, the two subjects became linked: the nature of my hero and ice cream. Yes, I know, a writer's brain can be odd.
But think of it this way. When it comes to choosing a hero, we have a whole smorgasbord to choose from. Rather like this:
There are so many flavours of ice cream to choose from, but the same goes for the guys who strut across the pages of our romances. Each one is different, with his own foibles and fears, passions and strengths. There are an infinite variety to choose from. As fellow LoveCat Michelle Douglas and I discovered some time ago. We invented a game of comparing our heroes with ice cream flavours. It soon became obvious that each of our heroes had his own particular flavour.
For instance, Fabrizio, the take-no-prisoners Roman aristocrat who stars in my current novella release 'Back in the Italian's Bed' is rich, strong coffee ice cream, probably made from dark, potent ristretto. His perfect match is a woman who's not afraid of that jolt of a high you get from a good, strong coffee or a challenging hero.
Then there's Damaso, the Brazilian slumdog tycoon in my September release. Definitely rich rum and raisin ice cream served with rum-soaked tropical fruit.
Or my most recently written hero, Asim, ruler of his own desert kingdom. His ice cream flavour is wild honey rippled through with pistachios and topped with Persian pashmak.
Looking back, I realise all my heroes have their own distinctive flavour. Maybe I should make it my business to recreate all of them next summer. In the meantime I've got the fun job of deciding what style of man my next hero will be and what sort of flavour. He's strong and ruthless but not uncaring and he definitely has a sweet side, albeit well hidden. I'm thinking possibly dark chocolate with rich cherry centre, but I need to do some more research before I decide. Usually I make those decisions by sitting staring into space, imagining my hero. Now I'm thinking I might also do some hands on taste testing. I wonder if that would help. I'm sure it can't hurt.
How about you? What flavour do you think your favourite hero might be? Chocolate and raspberry ripple? Strong peppermint? Caramel or even passionfruit? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
By the way, no heroes were injured in the making of the ice cream featured in this post.
Hmm, sorry, I forgot the question. have gone into a sugar daze....ReplyDelete
Looks like you have a lot of fun researching your heroes, Annie!
Hi Amy, sugar daze? Surely not! Actually, I'm wondering if this is the right approach to take when researching heroes. Think of the effects of all that taste testing! On the other hand, there's nothing like hands on, or maybe lips on research, is there?Delete
I'm thinking mint chocolate...cool exterior but sweet inside. Corny or what?ReplyDelete
Loved the pictures!
Claire, not corny at all. Mint chocolate - cool but with a bit of a bite and sweet inside sounds just perfect for a hero.Delete
Oooh Annie, those icecreams are to die for!!!ReplyDelete
Tash, they were terrific. Well, they weren't all mine, but I got to drool anyway.Delete
Ooh, heroes and ice cream, my two favourite things! Hmmm, you've got me thinking now, Annie.I'm so appreciative of you doing all the research for your different heroes. I'm going to choose dulce de leche flavour for my latest hero. He's got an exotic name, he's as smooth as caramel and you can't get enough of him :)ReplyDelete
Barb, what a great contribution. I adore caramel and I can see how it would work wonderfully for a special hero. Great choice!Delete
Yummy, my two favourites things--ice-cream and romance heroes--in the one post. Winning!ReplyDelete
I was going to suggest a mint/dark chocolate: the one at our local gelateria in Florence was called "After Eight" and I rather like the idea of a night-time hero. A tad dark. Definitely rich. But with a fresh acerbic wit.
Ooh, I love the idea of dark chocolate and mint. Some heroes are definitely at their best at night. Love the comment about a fresh, acerbic wit too! Are you going to write him? Please?
Next ARRA lunch we could decide which hero would be each Lindt Dome of Decadence. That would be a fun topic.ReplyDelete
The publisher Choclit describes heroes as various flavors of chocolate.
Hey, Elaine, what a terrific idea. I know how fond you are of your Lindt Domes so that would work out well.Delete
Chocolate and heroes is as addictive, I suspect, as ice cream and heroes.
This sounds really good a hero you could eat lol I would pick caramel with honeycomb through it fun and lucsious :-) :-)
Laine great idea and caramel is my favourite
Helen, I'm a caramel girl too, especially when it's rich. yum! Love the idea of the combination with honeycomb.Delete
Not surprised you approve of Laine's suggestion. That would keep us busy over lunch, wouldn't it?
Yum. Yum. Annie, I can't think about heroes...am off to get some ice-cream!ReplyDelete
Jennifer - shame on you! Of course you can think about heroes, while you eat ice cream!Delete
My next hero is going to be in self-imposed exile…and kinda bitter…so I was thinking lemon sorbet, but while that's tart it's also so light and refreshing (which won't fit this hero at all). Could fit my heroine though. :-)ReplyDelete
So I'll go for a dark chocolate ice cream with crushed scorched almond bars mixed through it. Hmm…*note to self: check out the ice cream aisle at the supermarket later today*
Michelle - now that's interesting. I was thinking of lemon sorbet for one of mine too - the really tangy sort that sticks to the roof of your mouth. I'm already looking forward to what you do with the crushed almonds and dark chocolate ice cream hero! How intriguing. I want to hear more about the self-imposed exile.Delete
Yummy. I think I'll go with chocolate peanut butter swirl hero - sweet with a bit of darkness and nuttiness mixed inside. :D I like wounded warriors with a sense of humor.ReplyDelete
Oh, Marcy, isn't it decadent how well peanut butter and chocolate go together? And made it ice cream... I'm drooling. Love the idea of a hero with that extra crunch!Delete
Annie, how about my latest favourite ice cream - peanut butter with a chocolate swirl? He's sweet, but with an edge, and has a touch of decadence? (Though now I'm thinking a little bit nutty, so that might not work as well as I'd thought...)ReplyDelete
Annie, I can see you've been very diligent in your research! Those pictures are mouth-watering! (sigh) Sadly, I can't eat ice-cream these days - there's something about it that really unsettles my tum. But I still appreciate the delicious yumminess of the way those desserts look!ReplyDelete