Girl Power/Kickass Heroine Fiction Writing Guide | PART 2

Ace Author Club
4 min readApr 26, 2022

Ⅴ. How to Design a Unique Kickass Heroine?

1. Make the heroine self-aware and independent

The classic Korean film 200 Pound Beauty involves a fat girl who longs for love. Because of her inferiority complex, she has cosmetic surgery and changes her name. However, becoming a beauty does not make her confident. She is always afraid that her past will be exposed someday. After experiencing a variety of conflicts, suffering, and a series of emotional pains, she eventually confronts her true self and accepts her imperfections. In the end, she declares, “I’m not Jenny. I’m Hanna. I’ve had plastic surgery, but I’m still Hanna!”

This film gives an excellent example of how does a self-aware and independent heroine looks like. The heroine and the hero might have unequal identities in the character settings, but they must be equal in their spirits. Compared with female characters of other fiction, the heroine here should have a strong personality and bear the same responsibilities and tendencies as male characters do in other stories. She might lack confidence in the early stages of the story, but she would gradually build up more confidence as the story goes on.

Photo by Rafael Leão on Unsplash

2. Design a pathway for the heroine to grow

What can a girl do to win her boyfriend? The answer of Elle, the heroine in the movie Legally Blonde, is to study hard and manage to get into Harvard Law School. Because her ex-boyfriend intends to become a successful politician, she believes if she shows herself capable of achieving the same things, he will change his mind. But after she is accepted by Harvard and suffers from a lot of discrimination, she finally realizes that seeking the love of her ex-boyfriend cannot be the only goal in her life. At the end of the story, she ditches her ex-boyfriend and becomes a good lawyer.

This story indicates that a female-centric story should focus on the heroine’s growth. The timid protagonist may become a strong individual. An indecisive girl can change into an independent female. A Kickass Heroine fiction is the history of her growth.

3. Ensure the heroine herself is the determining factor to success

The protagonist in a kickass heroine story should have her own beliefs and goals. The male characters in the story may assist her in growing, but she would never rely on them to achieve her goals. The direct driving force behind her successes comes from her desire, her pursuit of faith, and her dream.

4. Weak the heroine’s plot armor to show human nature

Nobody is perfect, even the protagonist in a kickass heroine story. The heroine is not necessarily perfect or unbeatable. In short, if their plot armor is too strong to believe, the stories will be dull. She could be vulnerable or fragile sometimes; she could make mistakes. And these weaknesses would contribute to her growth and success. More importantly, making the heroine imperfect will make the story more believable and give readers a more immersive reading experience.

For example, in the film Princess Diaries, Mia keeps trying something she is not good at. At the beginning, she is too afraid to try to fail. But she finally overcomes her cowardice and makes great speeches.

Photo by Becca Tapert on Unsplash

Ⅴ. Two Tips to Make Your Girl Power/Kickass Heroine Fiction Boom

1. Ensure the central idea of the story is relatable to readers

How can a girl who has been bullied at school relate to a princess who is being harassed in a castle? The answer is empathy. If the primary pursuit of the kickass heroine is relatable to readers, readers are more likely to walk into the story.

2. Combine the central idea with the behavior style of the heroine

Best-selling writers always use clear logic to tell stories. A logical storyline is also essential for Kickass Heroine Fiction. The character set determines the obstructions heroine might overcome and experience in a story. There is a common phenomenon in many novels that the heroines often achieve their goals too easily. By contrast, if a girl achieves her goal with effort, her success will be more touching. Every plot obstruction aims to reflect the heroines’ personalities and push them to grow.