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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tuesday Spotlight: Lindsay Townsend

I've had heroines who can leap a charging bull and live (Sarmatia in Bronze Lightning.) I've had a heroine as a healer (Alyson in A Knight's Vow.) Sunniva, in A Knight's Captive, is skilled with a needle and she can also juggle with knives. Bride in Bronze Lightning is a warrior and a metal-smith. Ahhotpe in Blue Gold is an Egyptian princess who can do magic and plot like a Grand Vizier, while Hathor is a courtesan, faced with stark choices but still a survivor. Flavia in Flavia's Secret is a female scribe who constantly confounds her Roman master.

Some of my heroines, like Tiyi and Sunniva, yearn for children. Some, like Bride and Ahhotpe, aim for glory. All use their wits. Each one desires to be loved by a worthy man and all insist on being treated well by the men they become involved with.

Why do I give my womenfolk this variety of skills? So they can be active in my stories. So they can rescue others, including the heroes. So they can initiate vital events.

Modern women juggle motherhood, family, careers, relationships, friendships and must somehow scramble for time for themselves. I try to show something similar in my historical fiction, for the role of women has always been complex. In the Middle Ages, for instance, depending on her class, a woman could be expected to take over her husband's craft if she was widowed, or defend a castle against a siege if her lord was away.

Shrinking violets? Never!


Linda Banche said...

Great, I love heroines who do things in their own right. No sitting around waiting for the hero to do everything. My kind of women.

lainey bancroft said...

They all sound like awesome and unique characters, Lindsay.

Great stuff. I don't like shrinking violets either!

Lindsay Townsend said...

Thanks, Linda and Lainey! Strong or becoming-strong or very interesting heroines are always intriguing to write, aren't they?

Julie Robinson said...

I wholeheartedly agree, Linda! I don't believe that all women were the simpering fools men have tried to stereotype them as.
Love your post today,