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My Very Own Hero

September 12, 2020 by in category The Writing Journey by Denise Colby tagged as , ,

I’ll admit it. I read a lot of romance and have accumulated several favorite heroes in my book list through the years, but there’s just one that I claim in real life as my very own hero, and that’s my husband. 

Blog Header Titled My Very Own Hero  by Denise M. Colby

We’ve been married for 25 years now, and I have to say that romance novels have shown me new ways to appreciate bits and pieces that I wouldn’t have otherwise thought of.

Some of my favorite stories include a hero and heroine who are perfect for each other because of the how they compliment each other in the little parts of every day life.

This is what makes a true love match. This is what I mean when I talk about my own hero in my life. 

And like in our stories, it’s easy to forget about this layer, especially when we get frustrated with the hero, which happens in our novels, too. It’s one of the things we enjoy when we read a story about two people who are finding out about themselves and this person who has grabbed their attention. And they don’t know where they are going in their journey, but we know they will at some point end up together.

As a new writer, I’ve worked through generic personality traits for the heroes of my books. But, as in our stories and real life, it’s important to find specific traits that make a hero unique. So to dig deeper I had to think about things from my own perspective a bit. I thought about my husband as how I would portray him in one of my novels and there are some specific things that came to mind.

Ways my own Hero is a good fit for me

  • He shares my love of Disney, movies, and family time
  • Gets offended for me when I’m wronged
  • He loves me in his own special way
  • Knows when he’s in a no-win situation
  • Uses humor when he’s uncomfortable
  • Doesn’t complain about my incessant talking and my messes

And as I’ve learned from those book heroes, it’s not always about the things he does, it’s also about the things he doesn’t do – like leave the toilet seat up and he lets me turn the toilet paper roll the way I prefer – all the time.

Sure, my own hero and I are still learning and adjusting to each other, but the romances I read help remind me to take a step back and appreciate the blessings that I’ve been given.

photo of Ken and Denise Colby riding the Matterhorn at Disneyland in 1994
Denise Colby and her very own hero on one of their many date nights at Disneyland, back when they were dating in 1994. The old seats on the Matterhorn added to the romance of going on a date in the park.

I hope the stories and the heroes I write about are able to do the same for my readers. That’s our goal as writers, right?

If you’d like to find our more about the stories I’m writing, I’d love to have you visit my website at denisemcolby.com.

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Just the Right Match

January 4, 2017 by in category Events, Reading, Spotlight tagged as , , ,

Finding the right match for the hero and heroine is one of the toughest and most exciting parts of writing a novel. The hero of INTO THE FIRESTORM is Luke Brodie, one of my strongest, toughest, sexiest heroes.

Luke, a former special forces soldier, is a bounty hunter who works at Brodie Operations Security Services, BOSS, Inc., in Seattle. A fat $600,000 is the 20% bail enforcement fee he’ll collect if he brings in international criminal, Rudy Vance. Luke is a womanizer par excellence and a dedicated bachelor. But he is also a complex man, one who has given up the idea of having a normal life.

Fortunately, Emma Cassidy showed up, a strong woman in her own right, a fighter, a lady determined to achieve the goal she has set for herself–bringing a murderer to justice, a criminal who is threatening her family.

Emma is also hunting Vance. It’s been almost a year since she arrived at her sister’s home to find the housekeeper murdered and her young niece the victim of Vance’s sick assault.

Emma is determined to find Vance and make him pay. And no one–not even the infamous Luke Brodie–is going to stop her.

I loved that Emma was just as determined as Luke, perhaps more so. I liked that Luke came to admire her. Though Emma is nowhere near his equal in skill and physical strength, she is smart and she has learned to handle herself well enough to keep up with him.

The attraction between them was magnetic from the start. Add to that, the sexual heat both are fighting to control is a battle they are sure to lose.

Finding the right woman for Luke was fun, and of course setting them off on a dangerous, desperate adventure added to the mix.

I hope you enjoy INTO THE FIRESTORM and if you haven’t read INTO THE FURY and INTO THE WHIRLWIND, the first two BOSS Inc. novels, you’ll give them a try.

Till next time, all best and happy reading.

 Kat

New York Times bestselling author Kat Martin is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara where she majored in Anthropology and also studied History. She is married to L.J. Martin, author of western, non-fiction, and suspense novels.

Kat has written more than sixty-five novels. Sixteen million copies of her books are in print and she has been published in twenty foreign countries, including Japan, France, Germany, Argentina, Greece, China, Russia, and Spain.

Born in Bakersfield, California, Kat currently resides in Missoula, Montana, on a small ranch in the beautiful Sapphire mountains.

Her last 12 books have hit the prestigious New York Times bestseller list. INTO THE FURY and INTO THE WHIRLWIND her most recent releases, both took top ten spots.

Visit Kat’s website at www.katmartin.com

Or look for her on Facebook at Katmartin/author.

 

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Cooler Than the Other Side of the Pillow

February 7, 2012 by in category Archives tagged as , , ,

How’s this for a hero:
He strides into the story, ripped and ready, but with an understated calm reminiscent of Humphrey Bogart, Mr. Darcy, or Aragorn. He makes things happen with a mere flick of his eyes and remains in control of all he surveys. But this hero is a flesh and soul man – capable of making mistakes, but even more adept at shaking them off and getting on with it. He’s got a backstory of royalty, yet he’s worked like a coal miner to get everything he has. As the story surges towards its climax, he gets sweatier and dirtier, but the eyes remain steady. The battle he’s fighting makes your heart stutter and your breath catch – he makes you gasp and scream – both in ecstasy and in terror. You’ve thought about leaving him – maybe you should have! – but you never could. The promise of the next time was always too deliciously inviting. And there is always a next time – he never lets you down. When he finally vanquishes the demons and sweeps you away on a gush of euphoria, you love him with all your heart: the challenges, the heartbreak, the agony of the past make every moment in the afterglow unbearably sweet. You want it all again and again, and so rich is his potential that you’ll be plumbing the depths of his character for sequels to come.
“That’s Eli, man, cooler than the other side of the pillow.”
So said New York Giants wide receiver Mario Manningham about his quarterback Eli Manning just moments after their Superbowl victory Sunday night.
Mmmruh…
And for those of you who don’t like football, I get it. I spent 30 years of my life resenting televised sports. In my family, guys watched sports as they shooed girls out of the room. Lucky for me, I grew up and married a guy who loves football so much that he loves explaining it to me, teaching me, sharing it with me. Football is smart, complicated and chock full of amazing history. To get a sense of this, just check out Don Cheadle’s NFL Playoffs commercials on YouTube. (My favorite is the one titled “Joe.”)
And if you missed the Superbowl, NFL Network is replaying the game Wednesday at 8. And the replay is better than the televised broadcast. NFL films gives amazing shots and angles of the action, sound bytes from players and coaches who were miked up throughout the game, and best of all, they cut out all the downtime between plays so all you get is sixty minutes of rocking action that will leave you breathless. 
Check it out. You just might find yourself inspired.

 
-Geralyn Ruane
Ten year New York Giants fan and lifelong fan of men in general

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STORIES MY MOTHER TOLD ME

October 15, 2011 by in category Archives tagged as , , ,


My parents made a pact to stand on every continent in the world. When my dad passed away, my mother went to the Antarctic for both of them. That’s when I figured there was a lot I didn’t know about mom.

When she returned with a bright orange jacket that she got ‘for free’ (don’t count the cost of the cruise), she had lots of stories to tell. Yet, when the excitement of the trip wore off, we both had the sense that we were still standing on a pitching deck with no way to sail to calm seas. A big piece of the puzzle – my dad – was missing.

“Write your memoir,” I said.

“My life wasn’t interesting,” she answered.

But the idea must have taken hold. Not long after this conversation, she called. She was done with her memoir.

“Impressive,” I mused.

It takes me months to write one novel and she finished hers in a week. When I saw her manuscript, I understood why. It was five pages long and she was eighty-five years old. There had to be more.

So began a year of weekend sleep-overs as we poured over photographs for inspiration. She had twenty beautifully documented photo albums, a box filled with pictures taken when cameras were still new fangled things.

There was mom in waist-length braids and Mary Jane shoes standing in the German village she called home.

She was a teenager in the U.S. while war raged in Europe, threatening the grandmother she had lived with, cousins and friends.

Here was mom, posing in a swimsuit she bought with the dollar she found on the street.

Mom in her twenty-five dollar bridal gown perched in the back of a hay wagon beside my father, a skinny, wide-eyed farm boy who would become a doctor.

Mom with one child. Two. Three. Five. Six of us all together. Dark haired and big eyed, we were her clones dressed in beautiful, homemade clothes. I remember going to sleep to the sound of her sewing machine.

And there were words! I bribed my mother with promises of Taco Bell feasts if she gave me details. Funny, what came to her mind.

To keep body and soul together when my father was in med school, he was a professional mourner and bussed tables for a wealthy fraternity. My mom worked in a medical lab where the unchecked radiation caused her to lose her first baby. They ate lab rabbits that had given their all for pregnancy tests. They were in love and happy and didn’t know they were poor. But St. Louis was cold, she remembered, and they couldn’t afford winter coats. Still, she insisted, they weren’t poor.

She typed, I edited; I typed, she talked. My youngest brother almost died when he was 10. She didn’t cry for a long while; not until she knew he would live. The captain of the ship that took her back to Germany was kind. She dreamed of becoming a missionary doctor. In 1954, she had two toddlers (me and my brother) and another baby on the way when she and dad drove to Fairbanks, Alaska where he would serve his residency at the pleasure of the U.S. Air Force. Her favorite outfit was a suit with a white collar. She loved her long hair rolled at her neck in the forties. In the fifties she made a black dress with rhinestone straps and her hair was bobbed. In the sixties she made palazzo pants and sported a short bouffant. She looked like a movie star in her homemade clothes. I wanted to grow up to be as glamorous as she was. She still thought she wasn’t interesting.

Mom wrote the forward to her memoir herself. It began:

A great sense of loneliness fills the house as twilight approaches. In the silence, I can almost hear the voices of my grown children as they recall their childhood years, the laughter of grandchildren and the quiet conversations of friends who have gathered here in years past, echoing through the empty rooms.

You see, she really had no need of my help as a writer.

We had seven copies printed. On the cover was a beautiful picture of a sunset. She called her book In The Twilight of My Life and would not be swayed to change it. Mom thought it perfect and not the least depressing. It was, she laughed, the truth. It was her laugh that made it right. She gave my brothers and sisters a copy for Christmas. My older brother had tears in his eyes. Everyone exclaimed: “I never knew that”.

Now I have a book more treasured than any I have written. I learned a lot about my mom and I realized why I create fictional women of courage and conviction, strength and curiosity, intelligence and, most of all, spirit. It’s because, all this time, I’ve been writing about my mother.

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