Lessons in Courage from Novels
By JoAnn Ainsworth
Maybe you’re like me in this way. I learn life lessons from book characters who show courage in the face of adversity. When a heroine gets herself out of hot water, I say to myself, “I should try that.”
My stories are about people going about everyday life. Something slams into them that knocks them of kilter. It could be a scheming person or a physical threat or Mother Nature acting up. Whatever the cause, my heroines must respond. There’s no getting away from it. Just how she’ll respond is something I often don’t know until I start writing the scene.
It’s one of the aspects I like best about writing. I know the crisis I’m going to throw at the heroine, but I don’t always know how she’s going to face it. Will she crumble? Will she fight back? Will she take another direction or turn a blind eye? I know where I want the story to go, but that character might not be the one to take me there.
The answer comes from the heroine herself. Depth is built into her character from the way she interacts throughout the novel. How she reacts to the problem is a natural follow-on to the way her character was forged to that point.
You might think from what I just said that I don’t plan ahead. The opposite is true. Before I write the opening sentence, I create the characters, research the time period, develop my theme, my pitch and my story question, and outline the whole novel. But just like with life, you can plan all you want. It’s not until you’re in the middle of the disaster that you know for sure what you’re going to do to get yourself out.
As readers, we can learn from these literary examples.
I find there are certain themes about courage that my characters discover as they face up to life’s difficulties. They learn that ethics matter, sometimes you have to fight, and rewards come with risk. We learn similar lessons as we face up to life’s challenges.
Then again, maybe I focus on courage because the Ainsworth family motto on its coat of arms is fearless courage.
Expect Trouble Blurb:
Opening herself to ridicule by revealing she’s clairvoyant is the last thing U.S. WAVE Livvy Delacourt wants, but when Uncle Sam needs her skill to track Nazi spies, she jumps in with both feet.
Join this emotional journey through paranormal realms of fast-paced suspense and supernatural battles as U.S. Navy psychics pit themselves against their Nazi counterparts.
When JoAnn Smith Ainsworth carried wood as a pre-teen so her Great Aunt Martha could stoke up the iron stove to prepare dinner, she wasn’t thinking, “I could use this in a novel someday.” Yet, the skills she learned from her horse-and-buggy ancestors translate into backdrops for her historical romance and paranormal suspense novels. JoAnn’s debut medieval romantic suspense novels received 4 stars from RT Book Reviews. Of her historical western romances released fall 2013, one reader said, “seamlessly, flawless writing.” Another said, “WOW, it was amazing! There was fun, excitement, adventure and so well put as a love story.” Her paranormal thriller, EXPECT TROUBLE, released May 2014. She is represented by Agent Dawn Dowdle of Blue Ridge Literary Agency.
For more, visit: http://www.joannsmithainsworth.com.
Twitter @JoAnnAinsworth or @JoAnnParanormal or Facebook’s JoAnn Smith Ainsworth Fan Page.
Redroom.com Blog: http://redroom.com/member/joann-smith-ainsworthhttp://temptingromance.blogspot.com/
Contact her at JoAnnParanormal@gmail.com.
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MATILDA'S SONG (ISBN: 978-1-60504-195-7)
OUT OF THE DARK (ISBN: 978-1-60504-277-0)