Strong Women, Strong Heroes

Building on my post from a couple of weeks ago, where I talked about building the perfect hero, I’d like to talk a little bit more about how to create a supportive hero.  I write strong women, mostly, but they can be a bit clueless, or overwhelmed.  Mostly overwhelmed, which is my usual state in my day-to-day life.  It can take me a bit to figure out how to “fix” something, and in the meantime, I need the man in my life to be supportive, but not in there just trying to fix it for me.  And I like my heroines to be like that too – perfectly capable of fixing their own problems, if given time to figure it out.

So I have a list of ten things that a hero should do to let his heroine, the woman who will be the love of his life, get to the fix for her own problems, yet allow him to be supportive, too.  I’d love to hear about things you might add to this list (answer in the comments!)

1. Be Aware of Her Responsibilities

She has a lot going on.  Strong women always do.  So make sure you know what those things are before you decide to jump in and help.  You are only seeing the tip of the iceberg, I can guarantee you!

2. Step in Before She Burns Out or Loses It

Be watchful and know when you do need to step in.  No (wo)man is an island.  She may need your help at some point.  Don’t let her reach the point of being so overwhelmed that she can’t figure it out on her own.

3. Be An Active Participant

You are, or are going to be a couple.  Act like it!  Be there to catch her, listen to her, remove obstacles and distractions.  Help her be successful!

4. Stop Trying to Fix Her Problems

Hey, everyone needs a hero now and then.  But if left to her own devices, she’ll get this.  If she complains about what she can’t figure out or solve, she may just need to talk it through.  Don’t make suggestions or try to jump in like the White Knight and fix every little issue.  Chances are you don’t really know the whole story.  That will come out if you are patient.

5. Hold Her

Women are physical creatures too.  Sometimes, they just need to feel like they can rest for a minute.  Be that resting place.  Hold her, without expectations of more.  Believe me, the reward for your behavior WILL be coming later.

6. Let Her Talk For As Long As She Wants

Women are talkers.  They talk through problems, they talk through nerves, they talk through excitement and happiness.  Let her talk.  You will learn so much if you are listening.  Women aren’t that complicated, but you won’t know that unless you listen.

7. Be a Partner

Are you half of the whole?  Or just there when there is some crisis to solve?  Partnership is a two-way, 50/50 street.  Do your part.

8. Provide Her With Hope

Life is hard, even if it is a romance novel fairy tale.  Everyone needs to know there is hope in the future.  Hope beyond the ogre at the gate, the taxman at the door, the villain around the corner.  Be that hope for her.  Don’t give up, on her or yourself.

9. Be Useful

Seriously, what are you doing going fishing when there are things to be done?  Be useful.  What burden can you take that will give her the time and energy to solve her problems?

10. Ask Her How You Can Help

Were you already listening (Number 6).  If you were, you should already know how you can help, but maybe she hasn’t been clear or you aren’t sure what she meant.  Ask.  She will be more than happy to share the burden with you.

Do all these things, and I can guarantee you will not only get, but keep, the girl. And that’s the whole idea, right?

I’d love to hear the things you’d add to your list.  Leave them in the comments!


Fairest of the Faire

Fairest of the Faire book coverBlurb:

Schoolteacher Connie Meyers is suddenly a young widow, her husband killed in a horrific car accident. Heartbroken to find out he had gambled away everything they had, she moves to her sister-in-law’s Midwest home to rebuild her life. A trip to the local Renaissance Faire with her nieces leads to a summer job as a costumed storyteller.

Avowed bad boy and fair performer Gage Youngblood is infatuated with Connie at first sight. Despite his deliberately commitment-free life, and Connie’s don’t-touch-me attitude, he soon has her in his arms, realizing quickly she is also in his heart.

When she is threatened by her late husband’s bookie, he steps into the role of protector, his fate forever sealed with hers.

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