This is a brilliant post on how female protagonists can be interesting. Highly recommended. It was like someone had tapped into my brain and saw what I thought.
Disclaimer: Keep in mind that these are my opinions and observations after reading many YA books with weak female characters.
1. If she is pretty, she should know it.
They shouldn’t flaunt it (unless it’s part of their character arc), but they shouldn’t not know it and continually say, “Oh, I wish I was pretty like that girl!” when they have two guys falling head over heels for them.
2. She should be decisive.
But not to the point where they aren’t uncertain. If they have two guys falling for them, they should have a reason to like both. (As a love triangle is a common literary device in YA, I will use it frequently.) Not because one is cute and friendly and the other is hot and mysterious and they can’t decide which one they like better. They must have legitimate reasons.
3. Don’t make her ignorant.
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