Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Please Welcome our Guest Barbara White Daille

It Takes a Village
By Barbara White Daille
Once again, I'm glad to be back at Seekerville and especially happy to be here to celebrate the publication of HONORABLE RANCHER, which...drumroll...releases today!  I hope you're all ready to party!

As this is the third book set in Flagman's Folly, New Mexico, it's provided me with quite a bit of info regarding today's topic:  the role of secondary characters.  First, let me introduce you to the hero and heroine.

A Best Friend’s Vow

The hero of Flagman’s Folly has been gone more than a year. But he still stands between Ben Sawyer and what he desires most—Dana Wright, the love of Ben’s life.

When soldier Paul Wright left for the last time, he made his best friend promise to look after his wife and kids. Ben—good, steady Ben—is honoring that promise. And it’s burning him up inside.

Because Dana is shutting Ben out. She wants him—so much—but she can’t afford to give in. If she does, she’ll spill her secret, and the betrayal will hurt everyone she cares about—her children, who loved their daddy; her town, which loves its hero; and Ben, who loved his friend. She’ll do anything to protect her secret—even give up her second chance at happiness.

And now, on to the secondary characters!

"It takes a village to raise a child." 

You've heard the expression before, haven't you?  For our purposes, let's rephrase that sentence to:  "It takes a village to help a hero and heroine reach their Happy Ever After.  Or not."  (grin)

One of the many things I love about writing romance is the ability to draw on secondary characters.  With books set in small towns—as mine usually are—we gain immediate access to family, co-workers, church members, neighbors, and friends of both the hero and heroine.  This melting pot of people offers never-ending possibilities for storylines!

Many of these folks are matchmakers who intend to help the romance along. 

Some are busybodies who want—need—to know what's going on in everyone's lives and who manage to add their two cents to any situation. 

And a few of these people are just there to cause trouble.  Because not every character in a novel, romance or otherwise, wants the book to end happily.

Sometimes it's hard to tell which role each character's playing.  Since I can best show you what I mean by giving you an example from my own work, I'll share one clip from HONORABLE RANCHER.  It's been edited for space...and to protect the guilty.  LOL

(A quick FYI:  Clarice and Ellamae are two older members of the Flagman's Folly community, and Clarice is also Dana's next-door neighbor.)

"Dana went back inside," Clarice reported, peering around the edge of the window curtain.  "I'll tell you, Ellamae, Ben's spending a good deal of time over there.  What will people think?"

To tell the truth, Ellamae didn't much care about anyone's opinion but her own.  "We covered that, didn't we?  You ought to be happy.  Considering all the work he's putting in, he'll raise the property values of the entire neighborhood."

"You think so?"

"Who mails out the town tax statements?" she asked, not expecting an answer.  They both knew very well that she did.  "I'd like to find out what those girls are up to.  I heard Kayla came into Town Hall the other day to look up some zoning ordinances."

"What for?"

"I don't know."  The admission bothered her.  She liked keeping up with what went on in her town.  "The judge and I were in court at the time, and nobody in the office asked her."  That would never have happened if she'd been at the front desk that day.

"I was talking with Dana just before you pulled up," Clarice said.  "She mentioned a proposal for the council."

"A proposal to do what?"

"She didn't say."

Ellamae bit her tongue.  Some folks just didn't have a proper curiosity bone in their bodies.

"People like to keep their troubles to themselves."

"Well, they shouldn't," Ellamae said flatly.  At Clarice's expression, she added, "I mean, they shouldn't be closemouthed with their friends.  Talking over troubles is what friends are for."

"Maybe Dana's doing all her talking with Ben now."

When Clarice picked up her kitting, Ellamae sat and brooded.  Some of the woman's comments had given her cause to think.  "You know," she said after a while, "I believe on my way home later, I'll stop at Town Hall and look up a few ordinances myself."

"It's Saturday.  Town Hall is closed."

Ellamae smiled.  "Not to me, it isn't."

With the above example, you might not be able to tell what roles these two women play—matchmakers, troublemakers, or just plain busybodies.  And that's okay.  Wondering what the secondary characters are up to makes a book fun for the reader.  Actually, it can make it fun for the author, too.

The roles of secondary characters aren't limited to those of the above.  Among other jobs, they can be confidantes, friends the hero and heroine trust to listen to their troubles.  (Ellamae would be happy to fill that role!)

They might serve as a reflection, revealing insights in the way their past or current situations parallel those of the main characters.

A secondary character can also act as a nemesis, a role that sometimes goes far beyond troublemaker even to the point of posing a threat to the main character's life.

From the friendliest to the most dangerous, secondary characters almost always have their jobs cut out for them.  Because it often does take a village to get the hero and heroine together.

What's your favorite type of supporting character?

Oh—and what have you brought to the party?  (smile)

To celebrate the release of HONORABLE RANCHER, Barbara is giving away an autographed paper copy of A RANCHER'S PRIDE and another of THE RODEO MAN'S DAUGHTER, the first two books set in Flagman's Folly.  To be entered in the drawing, answer her question about supporting characters.

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 lizards in the front yard but could do without the scorpions in the bathroom.

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.

She hopes you will enjoy reading her stories and will find your own storytelling magic in them!

Barbara would love to have you drop by her website: 
You can also find her on:
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/barbarawhitedaille  and
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/BarbaraWDaille


  1. Hello Barbara:

    I just downloaded your book for my Kindle. I consider setting to be a secondary character and I’m in the mood for a romance set in New Mexico. Bingo! I’m a big American Southwest fan. I’ve also read very few Harlequin American line books. I need to explore this line. I'm happy you came by today.

    I wonder how many POVs do you have in a story? It seems you use secondary characters in scenes by themselves. I am used to seeing secondary characters only when dealing with the hero or heroine. This made you sample very interesting for me.

    One of my favorite secondary character scenes was when the heroine was talking to her sister and the sister was trying to talk her out of marrying the hero. Then in the next scene the hero was talking to his mother and she was trying to talk the hero out of marrying the heroine. What was so interesting was the arguments the hero and heroine made were actually contrary to what they had been thinking to themselves. It was a wonderful use of secondary characters and very clever.

    I’m looking forward to reading your book. I hope you have more set in the southwest.


  2. Barbara! Thrilled you have another book out.

    I tend to like the male secondary characters who give the hero a hard time, for good or ill, about the heroine. Maybe because I expect women to talk to each other about such things but not men!

    Vince, Barbara is fantastic.

    Peace, Julie

  3. Good morning, Barbara!

    My favorite secondary characters tend to be the nosy busybodies, just because they are usually played for laughs but don't have a mean bone in their body. My favorite lovable busybody is Mrs. Rachel Lynde from the Anne of Green Gables books. She tends to say exactly what she thinks, which can be tactless, but is often close to the truth. Sometimes our hero and heroine need to hear the honest, non-sugarcoated truth.

    Your books sound great and I'll check them out! Have a wonderful day!

  4. Good morning, Barbara!

    I enjoy secondary characters - but I'm not sure which kinds are my favorites. I love the way a scene with a secondary character can show us aspects of the hero/heroine we can't see in other circumstances, so that means I like the confidant. But I also love the busy-body types who can't keep their own opinion to themselves. And then there's the town boss who has to run everyone's lives, whether they like it or not. It's always fun to see how that plays out in the story.

    In my WIP I have the aunt everyone hates - except my heroine sees her weak spot early on, which gives her an endearing quality. On the other hand, she's the nemesis for the hero.... When I added this character, I had no idea how hard she would be to write!

    I'm looking forward to reading your books!

  5. I like all kinds of secondary characters. I think as writers we have more freedom to make them more interesting and unique than even the hero and heroine who must be heroic!

    Stephanie, I love Rachel Lynde, too!

  6. Morning Barbara ad welcome back to Seekerville. It was great running into you at RWA Anaheim. I'm excited you have another book out.

    Vince, Harlequin Americans are wonderful. I always enjoy them. And Barbara's are especially warm and enjoyable.

    I have some great secondary characters in my book coming out in December, Current of Love. I like bringing in the older generation in my books. Probably because I relate to them. LOL

  7. HO yes, in honor of being from the southwest, let's put out a table of yummy fruit-melons are good this time of year and I bet Debby will send us some peaches from Georgia.

    Then we'll have a table full of cuisine from New Mexico. For breakfast here are some chile colorado con tortas (red chile with miniature omelettes), and for later in the day there are casseroles- cacerola de enchiladas and chile rellenos norte nuevo mexicano.


    Hmmm I'm getting hungry looking at all of this.

  8. Welcome to Seekerville, Barbara, and what a GREAT clip!!

    I love, love, LOVE secondary characters, so much so that in my books most of them become main characters at some point in time!! To me, nothing is more fun than fleshing out a family, a circle of friends, or a neighborhood with a wide range of quirky, fun and meddling types. Something which -- based on the clip above -- you appear to do quite well!! With just that one single clip, you drew me in with two secondary characters, which is amazing!!

    Thanks for the fun blog today!!


  9. Stories without secondary characters would have to be awfully flat, don't you think? i am a reader, so from that standpoint, i like all secondary characters from the young nuisance child to the older meddling aunt/uncle or whatever. i like Julie Lessman"s (and others) way of turning a secondary character in one novel into a main character in another!


  10. Good morning, Seekerville! I'm so happy to be back here today and am looking forward to a fun day.

    Thanks for the warm welcome and the comments so far. I'll be responding as soon as I fill a plate. ;)

    I see Sandra has started off the party with some wonderful breakfast selections.

    For my first contribution, I've brought cinnamon coffeecake drizzled with chocolate, still warm from the oven. Enjoy!


  11. Fun post, Barbara,

    I like many kinds of secondary characters. I think one of the most noteworthy to me is Rachel Lynde from the Anne of Green Gables series. She cracks me up with her need to know. :)

    I'd love to know how you develop your secondary characters.

    Thanks for such a fun post!

  12. I like a variety of secondary characters, but my favorite is the girlfriend who encourages but also nudges, or shoves, the friend when necessary. She's often everything the friend is not--short vs. tall, thin vs. plump, average vs. beautiful... You get the point. She's always smart and at times, when it's in the friend's best interest, she'll take on the role of nemesis.

  13. Hello, Vince - good to see you here again! I always appreciate your comments as they add--dare I say it???--food for thought to the party. ;)

    You're so right--setting can become a secondary character all on its own. (And FYI, five of my six published novels are set in the Southwest.)

    In another blog post along my tour for HONORABLE RANCHER, I'll talk about setting a bit, sharing that my preference is to add it lightly into a story, sort of the way the chocolate is drizzled over the coffeecake I've just added to the buffet table. ;)

    As for your POV question, how many I use varies from book to book. Always the hero and heroine, of course. I'm lucky with my line because I can include the viewpoints of other characters, too. Again, lightly.

    And yes, I do sometimes use secondary characters in scenes without the hero and heroine present. With matchmaker/busybody stories especially, it provides a good way to let the reader in on their schemes without the hero and heroine being aware of what's going on.

    Thanks for starting the conversation off this morning.

    Also, thanks so much for purchasing HONORABLE RANCHER. I appreciate the support and hope you enjoy the story!


  14. I love secondary characters and I love it when they are really quirky and weird.
    I love children in books, too. And quirky old people.

    I also remember someone telling me once that to have a character be likeable, have someone LIKE them.
    A strange way to put it but it really works. And a secondary character is the perfect foil for that.

  15. Hi, Julie - great to see you here, and I appreciate your support over at my Facebook page, as well.

    Thanks for the kind comment. (blushing)

    Love your thought about scenes with the hero together with another male who adds a bit of "stress," shall we say, to the hero's relationship with the heroine--and to his life in general. ;) Those are some of my favorite scenes, too.

    In the Flagman's Folly books there's another character--the local judge--who often manages to be the heroes' conscience, mentor, and thorn in the side--sometimes all at once. LOL He's such fun for me to write about!

    I think that's the thing with secondary characters, for both the writer and the readers--they add fun, depth, and complexity to a story.


  16. Stephanie - that *is* so often the wonderful thing about secondary characters--they can say things no one else can.

    I'm thinking of one scene where Clarice comes down hard on Dana. Whew. It's not something I'd ever have the hero say to the heroine! But the purpose is just as you've said--to give the heroine something she needs to hear. In Clarice's opinion, anyhow. ;)

    Thanks for the great example!


  17. Guy Talk

    In her book, “You Just Don't Understand: Women and Men in Conversation”, Deborah Tannen would call the conversation between Clarice and Ellamae ‘trouble talk’. This is how women establish friendships. Such talk shows they trust the other person because it can leave them venerable.

    Men have a different take. This is how men react to ‘trouble talk’. All the below are real cases.

    1. That’s women talk!

    2. That sounds like a personal problem.

    3. That’s something you should tell the chaplain. Why are you telling us?

    4. This example happened in the military the first time I experienced this little joke. (You’ve probably seen it happen many times.) I was telling some guys about a problem and they all started to move the fingers of one hand over the thumb and forefinger of the second hand. I had not seen this before. One guy said:

    “Do you know what these things are?”

    “No! But I don’t think I am going to like it.”

    “They are the smallest violins in the world playing “Hearts and Flowers”.

    Now that’s guy talk.

    I hope this might help some writers with a guy talking to guy scene. : )


    P.S. I think to have scenes with only secondary characters requires a longer format book.

    P.P.S. I thought of another memorable secondary character story. The hero takes the heroine away from a very nice guy. The heroine still kind of likes the guy but the hero is a better choice for her. Well, in the next book, the nice guy who lost the girl in the first book is now the hero and he gets an even better heroine! I can’t help it. I just loved this story. This was a Seeker story, too. : )

  18. Jan - isn't it fun to have so many kinds of secondaries to choose from? The good thing is, we don't have to make an either/or choice--we can have as many as the storyline calls for.

    Thanks for your comment about reading my books. I do hope you look for and enjoy them!


  19. Welcome back to Seekerville, Barbara! Thanks for your post on secondary characters. Your excerpt is terrific! I love the fun and trouble secondary characters bring to a book. My favorite role is when they teach the hero or heroine an important truth.


  20. Cara - that's a wonderful point!

    We often do have a lot more freedom--and flexibility--with secondary characters than we do with a hero and heroine. And I hate to beat this word to death, but it's so true--we can have a lot of fun with them, too.

    Also, as Stephanie and I touched on above, another of the benefits of secondary characters is being able to share info that we can't let the hero or heroine in on just yet.


  21. Welcome, Barbara--and what a fun topic!

    My favorite thing about secondary characters is discovering them when they show up on the page. While I'm writing a scene, sometimes they just materialize out of thin air (or blank screen). As Janet said, they often have something important to reveal about or to the main character, and usually they end up playing a key role somewhere along the way in plot development.

    For me, that's the joy of being a seat-of-the-pants writer. I love being surprised by my characters!

  22. I agrees that secondary characters are a must. I like the best friend who gives the hero/heroine a kick in the pants or comfort when needed.

    I happen to dislike the nosy busybody secondary characters, perhaps because my real life experience with those types has always been the negative sort. They give me the heebie-jeebies.

    It takes a skilled author for me to not want to whack the busybody upside the head (or as Mary C might do - bring out the guns *figuratively of course*)

  23. Sandra - good morning, and yes, it was great to see you in Anaheim!

    Like you, I enjoy writing about older characters. One of my previous books, FAMILY MATTERS, has an entire group of senior citizens in it. I LOVE that book! (Well, okay, I love all of them. LOL) It may not have reached as many readers as my other books, though, as there wasn't a cowboy or rancher in sight. ;)

    Thank you for the compliments. Knowing what a good writer you are, too, I'm honored.

    And thanks for all the goodies. Yum!

  24. Hi Barbara,

    Great topic! I love secondary characters. My favorite would be the quirky best friend, who adds humor but also a big dose of reality to the heroine.

    Somehow in my own books, I seem to write the 'favorite aunt' character who is wise and offers all kind of counseling, especially the spiritual kind!

    Your 'busybodies' sound wonderful! Gave me my morning chuckle!

    I've put the coffee pot on for Helen. Maybe she's on holidays!

    sbmason at sympatico dot ca

  25. Julie - thank you so much! I'm very glad you enjoyed the clip.

    I was on the fence about using an excerpt with secondary characters alone, especially when it has to be edited and out of context. But I love Ellamae and felt she'd be able to hold her own despite these challenges. ;)

    And I think that's an important point, too, which you reinforced.

    Walk-ins aside, all those secondary characters we love have to be people in their own right, not just cardboard characters added to move the story along.

  26. Thanks, Barbara, for a great post and a much needed reminder to beef up my secondary characters!

    Love your town busybody! She's adorable.

  27. Marianne - yes, I definitely agree about secondaries keeping a story from being flat.

    I love spinoff characters, too, and most of my heroes and heroines have been secondary characters in previous books. My secondaries become so important they need their own stories to be told, as well. IMHO, anyhow. ;)

  28. I see we've got questions coming up and more food for thought from Vince, and I'd like to respond coherently, so first, I'm going to take a break for some non-virtual sustenance. ;)

    Meanwhile, enjoy Sandra's contributions and keep those comments coming!

    Back soon.


  29. Secondary characters become especially important to do right when those characters will be having their own book. Now you've got to be true to their future character in book one, when book two won't be written for a while.

    I love to be able to get all three books written before the first one goes in and I used to be able to do that, but no more. I'm working much closer to deadline these days, so it has to be thoroughly thought through who ARE these people?

  30. Also, what Vince said about guy talk.
    I remember a book where the main hero's best friend was also involved with a troubled romance. A strong sub plot.
    The subplot hero comes into the house of the hero, both are really upset, driven crazy by their woman, and the hero is watching a football game and the subplot hero says something like, "I'm never going to figure that woman out."
    The hero looks up from the TV and says, "You want to sit here and talk about our feelings, Mary Lou? Or you want to shut up and watch the game?"
    The subplot guy sits down to watch TV while they are both just brooding---in silence.
    I just thought it was perfect guy talk.

  31. Barbara! Welcome back.

    The hardest thing is narrowing down the cast of thousands to a few key secondary characters.

    BTW, great, great, covers.

  32. One of my favorite authors was Dixie Browning. She did a tremendous job of prepping her stories with secondary characters who would be the hero in the next book.

  33. Hey, y'all--I'm back and ready to roll! Sometimes messages slip by me.

    Unintentional, of course. But if you don't get a response, please shout.



  34. Jeanne - good example! Stephanie mentioned Rachel earlier, too.

    As for developing my secondary characters..and this is only what works for me...most times they're dependent upon the hero and heroine and come to me as I develop those two main characters.

    For example, a hero who needs to learn a lesson the hard way might require a reflection secondary character to help him see the error of his ways.

    Then there are characters like Ellamae. She's either a matchmaker or a busybody--and I'm not giving that away here! LOL. But along with that, and as I may have said in a comment above, one of her many roles is to slip info to the reader that I don't want the hero and heroine to know yet.

    See the blog post, also, for additional roles for these kinds of character.

    Other books may have multiple main characters with their own strong storyline running parallel. But in my category romances, secondaries tend to be there in support roles. While they have their own story, it's more a thread through the canvas of the bigger book.

    Excuse the extended metaphor, but...I believe this is a good thing, because it ties the secondaries more closely to the plot.

    It's a good technique for longer books, too, but it's a very good thing when you're working with a shorter book.

    Hope that helps!


  35. Pat - I love the best-friend role!

    In the face of all the heroine's conflicts and doubts and misfortunes, it's so uplifting to see she has someone 100% in her corner.

    Even if, as you said, the BFF has to become a nemesis--for the heroine's own good. ;)

    It also very touching to have a character who's both selfless and true to a friend she could easily be jealous of.

    Thanks for the great comment!

  36. Hi, Mary - I just read through your list - quirky/weird secondary characters...children...quirky old people - and went: yep, yep, yep. I love them too and think I have them in all of my books. LOL

    Very important point here: << I also remember someone telling me once that to have a character be likeable, have someone LIKE them. >>

    Makes sense to me, since it's a way to show us the main character has likeable qualities, even though s/he won't let us see them.

    Going another step, it's a way to understand how a heroine can feel a hero is redeemable when no one else believes in him--because she sees something that no one else can see.

    Just one more thing to love about romances, huh? ;)


  37. Vince - thanks for the reference and the examples. I have one of her earlier books (Please Understand Me, I think. Should take it out for a reread.) And yes, I've heard the joke about the violin.

    Those were all great reminders, for me especially, since my DH is not much of a talker. ;)

    And it's important for any of us here who are writers to be able to convey dialogue that rings true, even from characters who don't share our gender or background.

    Thank you again for sharing the tips. Much appreciated.


  38. Hi, Janet - thanks for the warm welcome. Always good to come back here.

    And yes, I'm with you. I love having a character teach the hero or heroine a truth. And it doesn't have to be someone close to the person, either.

    I don't mean to be tooting my own horn a lot, but I know my books best...I had an 80-ish-year-old flirt in FAMILY MATTERS help open my hero's eyes to himself. Such fun!

    Thanks for the comment on the excerpt, too--glad you enjoyed it.


  39. Hi, Myra - thank you, too, for the welcome.

    You and Janet are right on the mark as far I'm concerned.

    And I love it when we get these bursts of inspiration with the characters. It should all be so easy, eh? LOL

  40. DebH - we're on the same page with the characters who are close to the hero & heroine.

    Uh-oh on the busybody secondaries. I would invite you to try one of my books but I'm not sure how you feel about Ellamae. LOL

    Without giving anything away...let me say, she *might* surprise you.

    Then again, she might not.

    That's one of the things about reading stories that hit close to home. They can be turnoffs. Or cathartic. It all depends on our perspective.


  41. Congrats Barbara!

    Thanks for reminding us the importance of secondary characters.

    Most of mine have been to bounce ideas off, but I'm not published yet so I probably need to work on that.

    I hope you sell more books than you dream of.

    Jackie L.

  42. Sue - from the comments so far, a lot of us love those best friends.

    And I'm always ready for a wiser older character imparting wisdom. Although some of mine are wise-***es, too. LOL

    Thanks for the coffee. For this afternoon, I'm bringing in sweet teas. And more sweets. They're my downfall.


  43. Hi, Debby - great to see you again! Thanks for your kind words, much appreciated. And I'm glad you enjoyed the clip.

    I think we all benefit from occasional reminders. I sure do.


  44. Mary - it *is* hard to set up characters in earlier books that might show up in future ones. A difficult balance between not telling too much, yet telling enough to get the readers interested in their story.

    And fabulous example about the man talk! Thanks for sharing it.


  45. Tina - thanks for the welcome. As said above, I'm very happy to be visiting again.

    Yes, with that cast of thousands out there to choose from, it's a wonder we ever pick the right ones. That's why it's good to have them all play different--even if multiple--roles. Helps us with the narrowing down. ;)


  46. Hi, Jackie - the secondary/best friend character to bounce ideas off is a good role and effective in many books!

    As for working at it, as Debby and I just said above, reminders are good.

    Besides, I don't think writers ever stop learning and growing and trying to improve. I won't stop, anyhow. ;)

    Thanks for your wonderful wishes! I really appreciate the thought.


  47. Welcome back, Barbara! I, too, write small towns and love secondary characters. It's so fun to add them in the mix. :)

    And now I'm going to keep reading for the answer to Vince's question about how many pov's you use. :)

  48. Hi Barbara:

    I’m now taking an online course called: “SETTING IS MORE THAN A BACKDROP” and I’d love to know where and when you will be blogging on the topic of setting. The timing is perfect.

    BTW: Seekerville is probably what I call a “Sanctuary Pantser City”. So would please comment on what you wrote at the start of “Honorable Rancher”:

    “Writing this book, I found myself holding my breath as I waited for this honorable man to find a solution to his dilemma. I hope you find your breath catching, too, as you read this story.”

    Wow! Did you really not know what Ben was going to do as you were writing the book? That would put you in the Pantser Hall of Fame. : )

    Also: I already love your southwest voice. Ben touches her dress and:

    “She shied like a filly come eye to eye with a rattler.

    This gets me in a southwest state of mind very quickly.

    Your first chapter is captivating. I’m totally hooked! (And you have four more SW novels! Bonanza!)


    P.S. That baby picture at the top of your website is an award winner! Ruth would say it was ‘stinkin’ cute. Oy!

  49. Hi Mary

    Perfect! Perfect! Perfect!

    Your story was so true of guys that I laughed until there were tears in my eyes. When the teardrops didn’t fall, I tried to rub them away with my fingers and it stung like the dickens!

    Do you realize you have literally written stinging comedy? (I’ve even never done that.)


  50. Hi, Missy - thanks for the welcome back!

    I know I answered Vince's question but let me expand a little.

    I have many secondary characters, but in each book I use the hero and heroine's POVs and other than that, as far as I recall, only one other character's.

    In the short category romances, there's really not a lot of room for many other POVs, and I try to keep the focus primarily on the hero and heroine and their developing romance.

    Hope that clarifies. ;)


  51. Vince - thanks so much for all your kind comments!

    We recently revamped my website and I love the photos we chose for it.

    I'm glad the first chapter of HONORABLE RANCHER hooked you.

    No, I really did not know how Ben was going to handle his dilemma.

    I'm not so sure that I pantsed my way through it, though. It was more that by the time I got to the end of the book, something happened that caused me to turn the entire story upside-down.

    We live and write and learn!


  52. My favorite kind of supporting character is the quiet 'best friend' that is always there for the heroine. She gives sound advice and is willing to do what it takes to make sure no one hurts her friend.

    What did I bring to the party? Some of Jeremiah's (local Christian coffee shop)Hazelnut dark roast with whipped cream! Yummo!

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.


  53. Cindy - that is such a good kind of secondary character, isn't it? Just the type of friend we love in real life.

    Thanks for bringing the coffee. I'm sure you'll find lots of takers for that around here. I'll just swipe some of the whipped cream for my slice of the 8-layer chocolate fudge cake I put over on the buffet table. ;)


  54. Barbara, sorry to be so late but hope you had a super "release day."

    Also wanted to tell you I read "The Sheriff's Son" several years ago and it is still one of my favorite American Romance books :-)

    Nancy C

  55. Nancy - thank you! With comments like that, you can be as late as you like. ;)

    As THE SHERIFF'S SON was my first book, it holds a special place in my heart, and I'm thrilled you enjoyed it so much.

    Yes, I had a wonderful release day. Am closing down the computer now, and your comments are a wonderful way for my day to end. Thank you again.


  56. I don't know that I have an absolutely favorite type of secondary character. I just want them to add something to the story.


  57. friendly and helpful to the main hero/heroine

  58. Mary - I'm with you!

    And we mentioned above how important it is for characters to have a purpose in the story.


  59. Shelia - that's a good one, too, and definitely works for me.


  60. My favorite secondary character is the quirky friend who makes you laugh. Thanks for having the giveaway.


  61. Rose - you're very welcome.

    And as you may have seen above, I love all kinds of quirky characters, so that's a good answer! ;)

    Thanks for commenting.