I get asked a lot by readers where I get my inspiration for my heroes. The answer, surprisingly, is real life. Let me give you an example.
A few months ago, during a particularly nasty rain storm, the fence around the external perimeter of my home came loose from its post. Four large panels were barely hanging on and I was worried they would fly off onto oncoming traffic and cause an accident. Unfortunately for me, it was 3:00 PM on a Friday afternoon which meant that every single fencing company I called was already closed until the following Monday. I was new to the neighborhood and didn’t know any of my neighbors well enough to ask for help.
Panicked by the potential danger, I grabbed my hammer – to do what with, I wasn’t sure. But other than get completely soaked, I didn’t stand a chance. To say I’m not handy is an astounding understatement.
Thankfully, just when I’m about to cry my eyes out in pure despair, my phone rang. It was a contractor who owned a fencing company in town. He offered to stop by right away and take a look at my fence. To my utter amazement, he not only took a look, he offered to reinforce the fence temporarily using his own supplies until I can get it permanently fixed. He also went ahead and inspected the rest of my fence to make sure that it too could withstand the storm. Did I mention it was pouring rain? After he was done, Hurricane Katrina could have come and my fence wouldn’t have moved an inch.
Naturally, I asked him what I owed. Here was the part where I turned into a sappy heroine in a romance novel and he turned into a genuine hero. He said I owed him nothing. Zero. Zilch. He offered to give me a quote to fix the fence permanently, but he didn’t need payment for what he’d done.
The poor guy doesn’t know I’m a romance writer, so he probably has no idea that he’d just been cast as the hero in my next story. I can see it now…sexy smile, hard edges, and wearing a tool belt that is the envy of all….