I think I'm the last writer in this month’s themed Snarkology blog run about heroines. I'm honored to bring up the tail end. First, thanks to Melissa for hosting all of us this month and to the many writers from whom we’ve learned a lot about heroines.
Right now, my daughter is my heroine. She started college this past September at her number one choice for university, and then went right out and found a job a week or so after moving into her dorm. She intends to help pay for her tuition, and she has learned a new skill as a barista. Good grades, a good work ethic, and her eye on a promising future. What more could a proud mother ask for?
I also want to introduce you to my latest fictional heroine, Miss Josephine Holland, a self-made, independent lady. I tell her story in An Impassioned Redemption, which I dedicated to my daughter (though the similarities stop at the feisty personality and sharp intelligence). Jo is a partner in a successful saloon and bordello. She apologizes to no man for making money, especially for making it in a way that is frowned upon by more polite society and particularly by her own gender in the late 1880s.
Saloons were male territory except for the women who worked in them and a few female owners. There were also, of course, a number of famous madams across the country. Jo isn’t cruel or exploitative, though, as many were. She genuinely cares about her employees, all rescued from lives that would otherwise have been short and brutal. Her women go as far as they want with the men they entertain, and they make a good living doing so.
Jo doesn’t need a man to come along and rescue her from her life of ill-gotten gain. Absolutely not! But she is at the point where she might like to relax, enjoy her success, and as with many modern businesswomen, find a good man with whom to share her life. She may wear corsets and carry a derringer, but she’s not very different from you or me. In fact, there’s a little romance heroine in all of us!
I'm going to spend the last of this post inviting you all to channel your inner romance heroine. Tell me what you most like about you. What’s your most heroic trait? What do you admire about yourself? Go on, don’t be bashful! Josephine Holland is never reticent. She has charisma and spunk to spare. And that’s what draws the attention of the man she has her eye on, riverboat gambler Jameson Carter.
Share with us (we’re all friends here): What drew your significant other to you? Or if you’re still looking, what quality about yourself do you think most attracts a partner?
It’s hard to focus on yourself sometimes, but make the end of 2014 and the upcoming year your time to shine as a heroine. Whether with your family, your partner, your pets, your job, your friends, your community or anywhere else, it’s your turn to show what a true heroine is made of.
Title: An Impassioned Redemption (available in the anthology Lost in a Kiss)
Publisher: Love Historicals
Date Published: October 20, 2014
Genre: Historical romance
Word Count: 30,000
Self-made woman, Jo Holland answers to no one. She runs a successful saloon and bordello, keeping off the streets women with few opportunities in life. Unlike her girls, she neither needs nor wants any man. That is, until she meets the wickedly attractive and intriguing Jameson Carter.
From atop his gambling riverboat, Jameson rules what he sees, and he has his sights set on one delectable lady. His odds of winning Jo are suddenly stacked against him, when a series of unexplained events puts more than his heart in danger. They threaten his life and that of the woman he intends to make his.
Why she didn't simply stroll up to Carter, place her hand on his broad shoulder, and introduce herself, Jo had no idea. Well, she did actually. He sparked an interest in her that was simply not allowed. She knew she could have him in her bed if she wanted. All her life, she'd been told of her appeal—she was curvaceous in all the right places and had naturally red-tinged lips to which men showed an inordinate amount of interest. However, at the moment, she found she couldn't put her mouth to use to smile or even to speak. She simply didn't know how to approach the man.
Jo glided quietly toward her private table. She didn't want to speak to him in the guise of a saloon owner and a madam because more than anything, she wanted to impress him, talk to him, get to know all about him. Then she wanted to run her fingers through his dark brown hair and look into his intelligent toffee-colored eyes.
Oh, she wanted him in her bed all right—after all he was the essence of dash-fire and sensual appeal—but she also wanted a man, an interesting man like him, in other aspects of her life. To take supper with, to go to a play, to sit with on a sunny afternoon and talk about the day's events or read over the local newspaper. And women like her simply didn't get that opportunity, except the bed part, and then only for a night at a time. No matter how financially rewarding that arrangement might be, it wasn't what she wanted with Jameson Carter.
With his back still to her, Jo pulled out her chair, which made a thunderous scraping sound that seemed as loud to her ears as a gunshot. She cringed as heads started to turn and Carter looked around.Another shot rang out and all hell broke loose. Jo realized that it hadn't been her chair making the first noise after all. As her heart leaped into her throat, she dropped to her knees and scrambled under the table.
An Impassioned Redemption is only available in a boxed set entitled “Love Historicals presents Lost in a Kiss” containing stories from 8 historical romance authors.
Currently at a bargain price of only $2.99!
Sydney Jane Baily completed her first novel at the tender age of 17. Thankfully, that manuscript resides in an undisclosed, secure location. After completing degrees in English literature and history, she spent years as a book editor and a website developer, both of which she still does. However, Sydney is most content when crafting stories of a bygone era, such as her Defiant Hearts series, set in 1880s America.
Born and raised in California, she currently lives in New England with her family—human, feline, and canine.
Website & Blog: http://www.SydneyJaneBaily.com
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Sydney-Jane-Baily/e/B009LAIOM6
Twitter: https://twitter.com/SydneyJaneBaily, @sydneyjanebaily
Anything else you'd like the reader to know?
My favorite charity is Best Friends Animal Society, a 501(c)(3) registered nonprofit organization that operates the nation's largest sanctuary for homeless animals and provides adoption, spay/neuter and educational programs.
Their goal: Save them all!
Their mission: To bring about a time when there are No More Homeless Pets. The problem is a big one, no question...but they believe (as do I) that it’s possible to make this senseless killing a thing of the past.