Heroic Women

Posted in Computers & Technology, On writing, Writers at 8:58 am by Marion

Or, A strong fictional woman is hard to find

Tech Thursday

An interesting query this morning that comes via a Facebook friend. We’re charged with finding a photo of a fictional character we believe best represents our character. Naturally, she had already my choice, which was Scarlett O’Hara.


I racked my brain, then, thinking of fictional characters that I identified with. Jane Eyre? Yes, a strong woman but … waiting for Mr. Right. The second Mrs. de Winter in Rebecca? Yes, but … mousy and without self-direction.

I scraped my mind and came up with the narrator of Doris Lessing’s The Golden Notebook, and thought, That’s just way too obscure for a superficial Facebook gesture.

Anna Karenina, suicide. Madame Bovary, suicide. Lara in Dr. Zhivago, a woman defined by Yuri Zhivago.

I thought about using Dr. Zhivago himself, since that’s the fictional character I most identify with, but refused to subvert the need for it to at least be female!

So I’m left with the Lady of the Lake … just mysterious enough to be fun, and significant enough in her own right. A giver of power.

In the end, the fictional character I most associate with is the one in my mind: Delia LaGrace, the narrator of the novel I’m working on.

Now that would be an obscure reference.


  1. Gene-o said,

    January 21, 2010 at 10:33 am

    Your other fictional equivalents:

    * Kathy in “Wuthering Heights” — beautiful, fascinating, unstoppable and slightly dangerous
    * Lady Glencora Palliser in Trollope’s Palliser novels — beloved, devoted, personable, regal
    * Melanie Wilkes, “GWTW” — generous, sweet, wonderful and strong as steel
    * Eleanor Dashwood — refined, educated, accomplished, destined to find happiness and fulfillment

  2. Marion said,

    January 21, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Great suggestions, all … I thought of Kathy in Wuthering Heights … but in the end, let’s face it, Healthcliff was borderline abusive, and I wasn’t quite sure that kind of relationship needed encouraging.

    Melanie Wilkes — yes, you’re right. She was generous and kind. Now that you mention Mrs. Wilkes, what about Belle Watling, the courtesan? Why not.