DISCLAIMER: I am cis and heterosexual, that is what I am basing my opinion and examples on. If you aren’t, I would love to hear how your opinions differ.
You didn’t think I wouldn’t talk about love interests, did you? Imagine this, you’re reading a YA fantasy and the wonderfully flawed heroine has just met the love interest. She’s instantaneously in love with him because he’s so hot. That’s it. That’s all there is to it, the only way for him to be identified. He’s super fucking hot. Oy.
In the same vein of Is Your Protagonist a Plot Device?, you have to give your love interest human characteristics. Maybe he laughs at inappropriate times and doesn’t think before speaking. Maybe he makes terrible jokes that only he finds funny. Maybe he’s an accountant. There are myriad directions for you to go in, you just have to pick one. Because, if your love interest is hot and nothing more, why would your reader believe the romance?
But, as important as it is to imbue your protagonist’s love interest with fallacies, for the love of all that’s holy don’t make him physically perfect. Unless the character is actually a Greek god, reading about god like perfection is about as interesting as watching paint dry. Maybe he’s short, but incredibly charismatic. Maybe his eyes are too close together and he has a beak like nose. Maybe he has a man bun to hide his male pattern baldness. When describing Elias in Ascendent, I built on the basics, like height and hair color, with imperfections. “…a faint snore… The bump in his nose, the slight upward slant of his mouth, …”. Instead of perfection, he snores, there’s a bump in his nose, and his mouth is crooked.
Thank you for reading and tell me what you think in the comments. Bye!
Image does not belong to me (I couldn’t find who it belongs to, if you know please tell me)