Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Author Karen Rose Smith: What Makes A Larger Than Life Hero

It’s my pleasure to welcome award-winning author Karen Rose SmithKaren-Rose-Smith-219x300 to Thoughts in Progress today as she makes a stop on her Pump Up Your Book Virtual Blog Tour with her latest release, ONCE UPON A GROOM.

Karen is the bestselling author of 75 published romances. Here’s a brief synopsis of ONCE UPON A GROOM: Zack and Jenny fell in love in high school. But Zack intended to escape the Rocky D while Jenny craved the roots she’d found on his parents’ ranch. With resentment and bitterness toward his father, blaming him for his mother’s death, Zack left for California to find a life as a movie director with wealth, fame and privilege. Now when he returns to Miners Bluff, his father isn’t the man he once was. And Jenny has a secret she has never divulged. 

As old fires reignite, Zack and Jenny fall in love all over again. A rescued horse becomes a bond that helps them revisit the good times in their past. Due to Jenny’s passion for the holidays and her insistence that they visit with friends, Zack begins to remember the meaning of Thanksgiving and Christmas. Will their differences push them apart once more? Or is Jenny truly Zack’s Cinderella and he will be able to whisk her away into their happily-ever after?

Karen is here to talk about a ‘Larger Than Life Hero.'
118795760My hero in ONCE UPON A GROOM was once the son of a rancher who had a gift for gentling horses. But then his dreams and ambition led him to a career as an Oscar-winning movie producer/director. Instead of videotaping horses, his talent led him to videotaping people. He is larger than life. He has several properties, lots of money and a lifestyle anyone would envy. But when he returns to the Rocky D and reunites with his high school sweetheart, he begins to look at life differently...he begins to appreciate everything he thought he left behind. 

What makes a hero?

When I consider a hero for one of my plot lines, I give him a painful background, a sexy appearance, confidence, a career he is passionate about and a heroine who can not only catch his eye, but keep it for a lifetime. The men I create are never perfect. They do have flaws. But I lay the groundwork for one character trait that never changes—these men are true blue. They are loyal, full of integrity and have always stepped up to protect and defend the people they care about. When they accept the vulnerability of loving, they become real heroes, steadfast husbands for the rest of their lives. 

My heroines are women I'd like to have as my best friends. And each becomes a friend as I write a book. But my heroes? I have to fall in love with them to make the romance work. I definitely fell hard for Zack Decker and I think readers will be able to tell! He's a larger than life hero because of his cowboy spirit and loyal heart. 


Karen, thanks for guest blogging today. Zack sounds like the perfect hero. Wishing you much success with ONCE UPON A GROOM.

Readers can visit Karen at her website @ http://www.karenrosesmith.com, follow her on Twitter @karenrosesmith and on Facebook (Karen Rose Smith author), and access her e-zine In Touch at karenrosesmith-ezine.blogspot.com for new releases and contests. 

If you’re a reader, what do you look for in heroes and heroines in books? If you’re a writer, what qualities do you give your heroes and heroines? Thanks so much for stopping by today.


  1. Karen, thanks again for stopping by during your blog tour. Keep writing about those intriguing heroes and heroines.

  2. Mason - Thanks for hosting Karen.

    Karen - Thanks very much for sharing what goes into the makeup of your heroes. I really happen to admire integrity and loyalty in people, so I'm glad you emphasise that in your "lead roles." I wish you much success!

  3. Sounds like an interesting love story. I like my heros to be strong both physically but also mentally. I like for them to know themselves and why they do what they do.

  4. Mason--Thanks so much for having me!

    Margot--I try to make my heroines and heroines unique. Yet they share those important qualities.

    Clarissa--I like to show change and growth in my characters during the course of the book. Sometimes their flaws can be turned into strengths. That's what makes writing so exciting! But they do have to have that "know-thyself" quality.

  5. Karen, It's interesting to see how you create your characters, working within a framework of sorts, then exploring them within those parameters. Thanks for sharing :)

  6. Nice to meet you, Karen. Strong and flawed - good qualities for a hero.

    Hi, Mason!

  7. Joanne--The right character can drive a book. In the 3rd book in the Reunion Brides series, my heroine is a music therapist. So that essentially colored the whole book with music!

    Carol--Thanks for stopping by. I usually have my head buried in my writing and I don't always consider exactly how I do it!

  8. Karen, thanks for sharing. I like all types of heroes. The unexpected, the typical, they are all fun.

  9. Holly--I especially like the ones who fall hard at the end!

  10. When I write, the hero must rise above the ordinary - despite himself.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.