Meet 2012 Golden Heart Finalist Marni Folsom
Posted by Elisa Beatty Jun 21 2012, 12:01 am in 2012 finalists, golden heart, heroes, inspiration, paranormal romance, women's strength
Today we’re welcoming Marni Folsom, 2012 Golden Heart Finalist in Paranormal Romance.
Marni writes in a tiny corner of the Pacific Northwest, strategically located at the base of her laundry pile and in the fine company of a baby boy, a toddler girl, three black dogs and a burly, artistic husband. Her Golden Heart manuscript, FLANNIGAN’S GRACE, is the first in a series about the magic-wielding descendants of pre-Celtic demigods. She blogs joyfully yet irregularly at marnifolsom.com.
Take it away, Marni!
Go-To girls, both fictional and real
Hello, Rubies, and thank you for developing this blog! I confess that I’ve silently garnered writerly tips and Golden Heart inspiration from you all for the last couple years. It’s a thrill to be invited to post.
The ruby-slippered theme hits home today; I’ve been thinking about resourceful literary heroines, and Baum’s Dorothy Gale definitely falls into that category. Maya Angelou said we must honor our heroes and our “she-roes”. She likely meant historical figures that helped shape our culture, but I’ve always found comfort and inspiration in literature, so my favorite she-roes are of the fictional persuasion.
My first literary she-roe was Encyclopedia Brown’s friend, Sally, because she stood up to the class bully on Encyclopedia’s behalf (Save the Cat, anyone?). Lucy Maude Montgomery’s Anne Shirley proved another popular heroine in my early reading life. Anne defined “resilient” for me at a time when my hormone-laden blush preceded me into every room, and other than her idiotic tendency to overlook the wonderfulness of Gilbert Blythe, I thought Anne-with-an-E hung the moon.
My literary she-roe list goes on: Jo March; Lizzie Bennett; Nancy Drew; Adah Price in Barbara Kinsolver’s The Poisonwood Bible; Bridget Jones; young Arya Stark in George RR Martin’s Ice and Fire series; Hermione Granger; Lily Owens in The Secret Life of Bees; Janie Crawford in Their Eyes Were Watching God; and many, many more….
In the romance genre, Joanna Bourne blew me away with Annique Villiers’ cunning in The Spymaster’s Lady, and she did it again with young Jess Whitbey’s determination and loyalty in My Lord and Spymaster. I loved Meljean Brooks’ Yasmeen in Heart of Steel (nothing like a fierce airship captain who dumps the hero into a zombie-teeming swamp because he challenges her command!) and Kitala Bell in Marjorie M. Liu’s Soul Song.
Then there’s Deanna Raybourn’s stalwart Lady Julia Grey and Julia Quinn’s Miranda Cheever. Right now, I’m enjoying tough-girl Rowan Tripp in Nora Roberts’ Chasing Fire and whip-smart Nora Towe in Meredith Duran’s At Your Pleasure. So many captivating heroines populate our genre!
Some of these she-roes overcome incredible odds in order to kick bad-guy ass, or to solve a big mystery, or to save the world. That’s all fine and good, but sometimes the most compelling heroines simply aim to bridge the gap between who they are and who they want to be. Me, too, girls. Me, too….
Each of these heroines is very different from the next, but they all inspire me with their ability to bounce back from adversity and internalize difficult lessons for future growth. Such is the way of women, and a message I’ve needed to hear lately.
A few weeks ago, I felt a bit defeated by some hardship in my world, and I rattled off a Yahoo post to my fellow GH finalists about the general rotten-ness of life as I knew it. Immediately afterward, I was embarrassed. I, a card-carrying Do It Yourselfer to Ridiculous Degree, had aired the dirty laundry in a public forum. I had, in essence, asked for help. *gasp*
But you know what? I’m now very glad I did! The responses to my post were filled with empathy, encouragement, and poignant personal stories from others who’ve traversed the murky waters I’m currently swimming. And those stories, like our GH-finalist manuscripts, brimmed with love and loss and the quiet-yet-indomitable strength of women.
These fabulous people who make up the list of 2012 GH finalists shared their collective experience and spurred me to open myself to greater possibility. Their stories reminded me of the power inherent in building something strong and good, even if it occurs via inch-high accomplishments. Ultimately, they reminded me that we are all she-roes in our own right.
I’d love to hear who your literary she-roes are. Do you have a favorite author who motivates you or character that inspires your writing? What traits denoting strength do you like to build into your romantic heroines?