Hi, everyone! And a special hello and thanks to Mary for inviting me back. It’s great to be with the Seekers again.
To start off, I’d like to share the cover blurb from my current release, A RANCHER’S PRIDE (May 2011), which introduces my topic.
Sam Robertson's life just changed. In one short day, he found out that he's a daddy; that his beautiful little girl, Becky, is deaf; and that her aunt, sign language teacher Kayla Ward, intends to fight him for custody.
Despite their ongoing custody battle, Sam and Kayla's love for Becky brings them closer than they ever expected, and Sam knows that no matter who wins in court, he could still lose—Kayla or his daughter.
I certainly hope the story sounds intriguing to you!
Today, my focus for this post is not so much the hero and heroine but the pint-sized character of the story.
One of the things I like about writing romance on the sweeter side set in small-town communities is the wonderful opportunity to do more with secondary characters.
They get to play many roles. Among other things, they can mirror the hero and heroine’s situation, add contrast to the main characters’ qualities, and find ways to cause as much trouble for the lead characters as possible. I love having these other adults in my books. They add so much to the plot and often show up in sequels, where they become the heroes and heroines of their own stories.
I also enjoy writing about children. As with grownup secondary characters, kids add humor and complications, pathos and poignancy, and sometimes just downright fun. Because I know my own stories best, I’ll share some examples from them.
As you’ve read above, in A RANCHER’S PRIDE, one of the main characters is a four-year-old child. Becky is deaf, but that doesn’t make any difference to her.
As she doesn’t hear, Becky uses other means to communicate with people (and with a stray dog she befriends). She has a very well-developed sense of sight. And for someone her age, she has a great ability to read body language. All this helps her pick up on everything happening around her—which sometimes is more than the adults in the vicinity want her to know. (smile)
FAMILY MATTERS (October 2010), went to the opposite end of the underage continuum. There are several teenagers in the book, two brothers of the heroine and an eighteen-year-old runaway. As I’m sure you know, that age group comes with its own set of concerns.
Teenagers are often likely to be self-absorbed and egocentric. On the other hand, as with one of the boys in FAMILY MATTERS, they can have a knack for hitting on painful truths—and be outspoken enough to share them! This makes life very...interesting for my hero and heroine.
In my first novel, THE SHERIFF’S SON, the young character is a seven-year-old whose run-in with the law gets him—and his mother—into more trouble than even he can know.
COURT ME, COWBOY, a baby not yet born is instrumental in setting up an entire range of awkward issues for the hero and heroine—while giving them some very sweet and special moments along the way.
No matter which story I’m telling, from four-year-old Becky to the troublesome teenagers to all of the underage characters I’ve since written about, I feel the need to caution the adults: Be careful, the children are watching....
But every time, I’ve managed to rein in that impulse.
Those are my stories—literally—and I’m sticking to them.
But what do you think? Do children add a lot to a romance novel? Or would you rather not have them on the page?
Originally from the East Coast, award-winning author Barbara White Daille now lives with her husband in the warm, sunny Southwest, where they love the dry heat and have taken up square dancing.
From the time she was a toddler, Barbara found herself fascinated by those things her mom called "books." Once she learned the words between the covers held the magic of storytelling, she wanted to see her words in print so she could weave that spell for others.
Barbara hopes you will enjoy reading her stories and will find your own storytelling magic in them!
A RANCHER’S PRIDE (May 2011) was just released and has received wonderful reviews, including a 4-1/2 star Top Pick rating from RT Book Reviews.
You can find Barbara online at her web site and blog: http://www.barbarawhitedaille.com/ where you can check out her Virtual Book Tour schedule for A RANCHER’S PRIDE!
You can also reach her via Facebook and Twitter: http://www.facebook.com/barbarawhitedaille and https://twitter.com/BarbaraWDaille
Barbara’s looking forward to chatting, so please feel free to take a look at her questions to you and to leave comments or questions for her.
Also, she will be holding two drawings for one of her backlist books. One winner’s name will be drawn from comments left here at Seekerville today, May 27th. A second winner’s name will be drawn from those who send her a message today via the “Contact Barbara” form at her website AND mention Seekerville in the message.