Thursday, February 14, 2013

THE STRUGGLE TO LOVE by Rolynn Anderson

It’s Valentine’s Day, and I'm happy to talk about the topic on almost every American’s mind.  But I'm going to take a slightly different tack on the subject by focusing on characters who shun romance.  As you know, I write romance/suspense.  I like to see events shake up a hero and heroine, pushing them to address their flaws and opening them to love and be loved.  I enjoy being the author-puppeteer, urging transformations in my characters.

In real life, people don’t change very much, probably because their  ‘shake-up’ never comes.  Still, we readers are eager to live, vicariously, the tumultuous lives of heros and heroines in a romantic suspense.

The mathematics I use in writing the story is interesting.  If I ramp up the flaws in a character, I must also intensify the events as well as sharpen the elements of the love interest.  But I have to be careful: the reader has to believe the transformation is possible.

Linda Howard, who writes fabulous romantic suspense, meets this challenge in DEATH ANGEL, with a terribly flawed hero.  Impossible, yet, believable transformations.  One of my favorite contemporary romances, WHEN VENUS FELL, by Deborah Smith, gets my ‘A’ as well in presenting a damaged hero and heroine. 

I’d like to know what romance novels you’ve enjoyed that present an extremely flawed hero/heroine whose character arc is well-crafted.  I need more pep pills…those stories charge me up!

Take a look at my Funeral Planner Suspense Series for a heroine who’s forced to change.  Here's SWOON:

Don't miss SWOON by Rolynn Anderson! If you like an interesting cast of characters, a heavy dose of mystery and a lot of fabulous surprises, you'll be happily turning pages late into the night.ˮ
~ Brenda Novak, NYT and USA Bestselling Author of WHEN LIGHTNING STRIKES
Her dead clients won’t rest in peace.
When the dead tell tales, Jan Solvang’s first reaction is to RUN!  But then she gets caught up in their mysteries.
Jan’s a boutique funeral planner, new to risk, hired to bury a missing woman and memorialize an infamous man.  Yet when she digs for clues to write their eulogies, she disturbs family secrets and unmasks killers.
Roman Keller, hard-driving documentary writer, is in complete control of his life and his stories, until he falls for Jan, a woman who trusts her dog, her faint-dreams, and her instincts more than she trusts him.

Can they make the sacrifices necessary to cement their relationship or will the mayhem caused by the dead ruin their second chance at love?  

Print version Amazon


Ana Morgan said...

I think in most good novels, one or both main characters have to have flaws.
In my WIP, the hero is fairly perfect--except that he's French--with attitude, swagger and self-absorption bred inherently. My heroine is more flawed, but she saves the hero anyway.

Ana Morgan said...

Happy Valentine's Day, Rolynn!!!

Rolynn Anderson said...

Thanks, Ana! All of us have love struggles, but we make our characters suffer more!

Ilona Fridl said...

I can relate completely! I love to make situations for my characters and see how they come out of them.

Rolynn Anderson said...

Right, Ilona! We're kind of god-like that way, aren't we...while we struggle for control over our own lives!

morgan said...

The ultimate flawed heroine Scarlet O'Hara didn't get to keep the hero. I often wonder if it was a reflection of Margaret Mitchell's philosphy that no one truly gets what they want. Sad, no hea there.

Misty Dietz said...

One of the heroes that stays with me to this day is Jacques in Christine Feehan's Dark Desire. I haven't read a more physically and psychologically tortured character in my life, yet the way Feehan crafts the story, I am completely willing to suspend my disbelief. It wasn't the best book I've read, but for some reason, he just really stays with me. And yes, there is definitely a HEA for him, so it was a satisfying ending. :)

Sandra Dailey said...

You pose a tough question. I'll be thinking about this all night. I do love Linda Howard and have all her books, but I'm going lighter and choosing the hero in Vonnie Davis's book, 'Those Violet Eyes'.

Rolynn Anderson said...

Sandra, Misty and Morgan, thank you for your ideas. Scarlett Ohara is a great choice and I can't wait to read the Feehan novel with the tortured hero. I've only read two of Feehan's books..she builds characters well. I have read Those Violet Eyes...excellent choice in the hero. I'll be sure to let Vonnie know!