Saturday, 16 February 2008

English Lord, Ordninary Lady - Hero & Heroine

I had a very clear picture in my head of what Josie, my pink-haired heroine in English Lord, Ordinary Lady would look like. I’m not someone who has to find a photo of my hero and heroine before I can write. I normally have a vague idea of what they look like – although this often comes in to sharper focus, or even changes, as I write the book.

Josie is 24 and petite – 5ft 2 – and when Will first meets her, he notices her large eyes and her stubborn little chin. She’s not conventionally pretty, but gorgeous in a quirky, Audrey Hepburn kind of way. Certainly, Will can’t seem to take his eyes off of her once he’s got past the bright fuchsia hair. Especially her ankles. And her feet. Isn’t it a relief when men get fascinated by the less obvious parts of a girls’ anatomy?

I was watching Without A Trace one day and suddenly saw an actress that bore a striking resemblance to Josie. Although Christina Hendricks is taller and doesn’t have the pink hair, she had the quirkiness, the twinkle in her eye that made her a dead ringer.

And then there was Will, 35 and old beyond his years. If I had a heroine who wanted to rebel and escape the upper-crust life she’d been born into, then who is the worst possible person she could fall in love with? Yup, that’s right. A man with a title. And just to top it off, I made sure he was traditional and concerned about his heritage, and I gave him a sure-fire reason to want to be the best Lord Radcliffe there had ever been. The last thing he needed was a “pink-haired pixie”, as he calls her, fouling up his plans to restore the family honour.

Will started off looking a bit like the picture of Richard Armitage above. But the gorgeous Mr Armitage was just a bit too wild-looking (and don’t we love him like that, ladies?) to make a good Will. And for that I will be eternally disappointed. As much as I wanted him to look like the original picture, he just didn't. And I couldn't seem to talk my subconscious out of it.

Once again, I was flicking through the TV channels and I spotted someone who looked a little bit more like the Will I had in my head. This is Joe Flannigan, from Stargate Atlantis. If you imagined him British and less spiky-headed and smiley (as he can be in the show), he could be Will’s twin brother. The frown is certainly Will’s!

Will was born to be solid, respectable and in charge. Too bad then that his grandfather ran off with a stripper and was disinherited. But then he learns that the previous Lord had died childless, and Elmhurst Hall belongs to him. Life is finally going his way. Well, at least it is until he turns up at his new home and finds fairies at the bottom of the garden…

Come back soon to see pictures of the real-life setting for English Lord, Ordinary Lady!


Anonymous said...

Hi Fiona,

I like the picture of the man with downswept gaze. That looks like a really great one for the hero you've described. I use pics to capture emotions, too.


Ray-Anne said...

Joe Flannigan. Yes. Now I have seen the pic - he is perfect. I did wonder about Rupert Penry-Jones, but perhaps he is a little too blond. :-)