Who doesn’t love a good romance, right? Especially the part of the story where the guy is stunned by the beauty, personality, camaraderie, or even the smile of the woman who’s bound to steal his heart. You know what I mean.
It’s like the part in the movie How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days when Kate Hudson steps out in the killer yellow gown and Matthew McConaughey places his hand over his heart…
or when Jack sees Rose for the first time on the Titanic….
or when Jack in While You Were Sleeping sees Lucy for the first time (or their cute little moment on the ice ;-)
It’s that little bit of ‘fairytale-feel’ in real life. Boy meets girl… and is spellbound, or at least attracted (maybe even against his will ;-).
Simply put, it’s the ‘Wow’ factor.
We entered the great wide world with the ‘wow’ factor firmly in place – set up by a loving Father – and to be honest, we’ve never quite recovered.
If you don’t believe me, just go to the beginning.
The VERY beginning.
The children’s book When the World Was New by L.J. Sattgast explains it best.
As we know from Genesis God said everything was good… until Adam was lonely. Well, God planned to remedy that problem lickety-split. So he caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam.
Here’s how Sattgast explains what happens next:
So while he slept God made a wife
And breathed in her the breath of life.
The man awoke. She took a bow.
And all the man could say was… “Wow!”
In fact, Adam is so wowed by his bride he immediately starts spouting poetry.
It’s fantastic! God’s first gift to his creation is…a woman, and with her came wonder and pure unadulterated amazement.
And women have liked holding that sort of wondrous appeal ever since ;-)
One of my favorite parts of a book is getting inside the hero’s head. When we learn what draws him to the heroine, what softens him to her and not someone else – it’s the ‘wow’ factor. When a manly man falls all over himself for a woman, it’s touching, sweet, and endearing – tapping a part of our hearts with a craving instilled from the dawn of time.
We love living it and we love reading about it, or watching it on movies.
That’s why we get all dolled up for dates and add a spray of perfume.
In my most recent WIP, Just the Way You Are, my hero, Wes, is a reformed British bad-boy. He’s seen it ALL when it comes to women, or so he thinks. As a former actor, he’s spent time with plenty of beautiful women, but what is it about my heroine, Eisley, which captures his heart? Her authenticity and generous nature. One thing he’d never expected and it gives her the ‘wow’ factor. :-)
Here’s his first reaction to her (he’s placed his palm over her mouth to keep her from revealing his identity to the passersby at the airport:
A shock ran up Wes Harrison’s arm, directly from Eisley’s lips. Heat rifled through him, awakening his senses with every detail, the interlocking ribbons of green and gold in her eyes, the warmth of her breath against his palm, the scent of rosemary and mint. Her honesty set his cynical perspective into a spin. Whether it was the easy drawl of her accent or the feigned innocent look in her eyes, he was tempted to allow the suspicion of the past two years fall from his shoulders.
Would you share a book you’ve read lately which dazzled you with a ‘wow’ factor from the hero’s point of view? Or maybe share a movie you’ve watched recently which showed the ‘wow’ factor so well.
Valerie Comer says
I love this, Pepper! The WOW factor indeed.
Thanks, Val. It was fun to write :-)
Andrea Cox says
Great article, Pepper! The book I’m reading now, The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn, has a pretty good wow factor from the hero’s point of view. The first time he sees the heroine, she’s in a blue silk dress. He’s struck silent by the shock of her beauty. Wonderful book, by the way.
Just so you know, the quote from Dr. Seuss at the top has been misquoted and his name spelled wrong. Here’s what I found on Goodreads.com: “You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”
― Dr. Seuss
Thanks, Andrea! Will fix.
And the book sounds wonderful
Andrea Cox says
Heather Gray (@LaughDreamWrite) says
Who doesn’t love a little “wow factor,” right? Great post! One of my favorite wow moments is when hero/heroine have known each other for a while and then suddenly – bam – he looks up and sees her in a different way than he’s ever looked at her before. This person he’s known forever and always thought of as x, y, or z, is now suddenly…wow. ;)
Oh Heather! I love that moment!! I have a few books in the works when “friends” change into something more romantic. Some of the best romances are born of friendship!
Cathy Bryant says
Great post, Pepper! (And I loved the excerpt from your WIP–well done!) In my latest book (just typed THE END yesterday & about to dive into edits/rewrites), the WOW factor comes when the hero (who previously had a relationship with the heroine) sees the new her–especially spiritual changes he didn’t expect. LOVE the Wow factor! :)
Congrats on typing ‘the end’, Cathy. I love that feeling! And your book ‘wow’ sounds lovely
Carol Moncado says
Oh, Pep! I love your book! It’s so good!!! I can’t wait for the rest of the world to read it and know what I already do – fantabulousness!!!!!!
I love when Travis sees Meredith in Short-Straw Bride. Or when Tom Linscott realizes he’s in love with Mandy Gray [never mind that she’s married, at the time, to a… well, we don’t use words like that around here ;)]. I’m sure there’s more. The one I’ve got out on proposal now has an h/h with a past together but haven’t seen each other in many years. He doesn’t HATE her, but he wants nothing to do with her. Ever.
Then he sees her crying.
And that’s pretty much all she wrote.
Oh man, Tom Linscott!! (swoon). Good choice! And thanks for the kind words, Carol. Hoping and waiting…right along with you, friend
Narelle Atkins says
Pepper, great post and I loved your excerpt! That WOW moment is what will hook romance readers into the story :)