Woman in jeopardy. That was the downfall for my inspirational romantic suspense. The heroine placed herself directly in danger in order to save another. A role more suited for a hero than a heroine. The danger needed to be directed at her. But why? A woman is just as capable of being a rescuer as a man. Sometimes, women have to be the knight in shining armor for themselves. For their children. For each other.
At first I was heartbroken. This book was one of those writers labeled ‘a book of my heart’. I didn’t want to give up. I had come so close. I consulted some friends and showed them the encouraging rejection letter. I could try again. Write another book. Submit that one.
A wise and beautiful friend then said the words that changed everything. “You don’t write women in jeopardy. You write the self-rescuing princess.” Another friend chimed in agreement. “You’ll keep running into the same issue. It’s not in you to write the heroine they want.” And they were right. I knew the women I wanted to showcase in my stories. That I wanted to write about. Write for.
I’ve been in the position of having to save myself because those responsible to do so refused. Actually, those responsible created the danger and built the tower I wondered if I’d ever escape from. But I did. Not an easy task when you’re still really just a kid but one that was necessary. Sure, I could damsel in distress with the best of them … especially when my preferred snack was on the top shelf. But for the most part, I learned at a young age that I had to fight my own battles or else let the dragon burn me.
For many, there is no prince. No knight in shining armor … actually not even a knight in tarnished armor willing or able to go to battle. Some will have to defend their own honor. Slay their own dragons. Find a way out of the tower through their own strength. The self-rescuing princess isn’t doomed to life of unhappiness if a man doesn’t save her … because she’ll save herself. She’ll find her prodigal prince or help that knight shine up his armor. And if she doesn’t find her match, she’ll still live a life to be proud of and admired.
There was a happy ending to this story. I submitted my book to Desert Breeze Publishing. They were looking for strong heroines in rescue type of rolls, especially in romantic suspense. I was shocked when I received word that they not only wanted the first book … but the rest in the proposed series.
Push aside the damsel in distress that lurks inside and embrace the self-rescuing princess. Happiness. Hope. Empowerment. Future. It’s available for all. Heroines and heroes alike.