Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Heroines that are Stronger than they know.

Hello, Jolene Navarro here and I have a question.

Do you have a certain type of heroine you like? I have always loved the stories of the old west, stories of the women in my family.

Strong, independent and leaders. Women of faith that rode horses, took care of the land along with raising children and caring for a home.

The part of history we don’t see as much is the woman that mastered the tools of the cowboy trade such as ropes, spurs, knives, rifles and branding irons.  They rode beside the men of Texas. Some even before Texas was Texas.

Life was not easy as they carved out a home from the rock of the Texas land. They didn’t back down and they didn’t give up.

I was just reading about Bess Colemn.
She had a dream but as a daughter of a Cherokee father and an African American mother no one expected her to achieve them. Coleman defied all odds when she became the first black woman aviator (as well as the first Native American woman aviator).  It didn’t come easy. It was during World War 1 and she couldn’t find any one willing to teach a woman or an African American to fly. Undeterred, Coleman took a language course in French, and then sailed to France where she earned her pilot’s license at the age of 29. Unfortunately it would be just five short years later she was killed in a plane crash. She was a passenger when the plane malfunctioned in mid-flight.

But she changed the way people thought of women as she traveled across the country as a “barn stormer” or exhibition pilot. She didn’t follow the script someone else gave her.

Women in my family loaded up and headed to the unknown land of Texas in the mid-1820s. They ran ranches and farms, faced booms and years of devastation.

They loved their families and the possibilities in this wild untamed land. The heroine of my upcoming historical (My first with LIH and my last) LONE STAR BRIDE was influenced by stories of the women that helped build Texas.

She wanted to help her father – growing up she was allowed to work with the cattle and excelled at the cowboy skills. After the death of her mother and brother she thinks it is a perfect time for her to step up and become a partner in the ranch.

But her father has other plans for her, to prove to her father she is more than capable, she dresses up as a boy and help drive the cattle to New Orleans.

To call her feisty and stubborn might be an understatement. She was inspired by the history I read of my own family. I loved writing her and as we get word that the LIH is being discontinued I think about the determination I put into her to success and live out God’s plan even as other events and people try to stop her.

She perseveres and stays true to herself and God’s plan for her, a plan only she can fulfill.  It didn’t go the way she planned, but it rarely does. Our characters come from us, from our experiences or from the people that inspire us. We create from deep inside us. The characters I develop never seem to know how strong they truly are until they are forced to change and find their essence.

Finding your essence is never an easy path. When I look back, I see that some of the scariest moments of my life ended up taking me in a new direction I would have never even know – a direction that was greater than anything I could have planned.

Have you had a time that didn’t go as planned but looking back you wouldn’t change a thing? Reminds me of the Garth Brooks song: The Dance. 


  1. Love it, Jolene. I so love hearing about the strong woman of history who have carved their own paths. It couldn't have been easy for them and yet they persevered. I especially love reading stories set in my native state of Texas. Lone Star Bride sounds like a great read. Thanks so much for sharing.

  2. Sounds like a wonderful read. Thanks for sharing your inspiration and your story with the world.

  3. I'm trying to remember the series I watched almost 20 years ago about women in Texas and how they protected their land during the Alamo. It was great! I can so see you and yours there :)

  4. My Great Great...grandparents where part of protecting the homes and moving lifestock out of Santa Anna's troops. The Burkets and Greens.

  5. I love strong heroines in novels. They inspire me to rise above whatever I'm facing in my own life.

  6. Agreed Jolene! My first real introduction to strong literary heroines who created their own path and found love were Janette Oke books. I love how historical books have such strong female characters. I was also really inspired growing up by stories of my great-grandmother too, and how she ran the family farm after my great-grandfather died. Your book sounds wonderful.

  7. Jolene, your story sounds wonderful! Thanks for sharing Bess Coleman's story too. What a brave woman!

  8. I love this, Jolene! Especially how your heroine came from your personal history.


  9. Hey, Miss Jolene. I'm a big fan of Bess Coleman. Feisty. Strong. A pioneer. A fabulous heroine. I love your cover for Lone Star Bride and I can't wait to read it. It sounds wonderful. Blessings!

  10. Thanks for sharing the story of Bess Coleman. The early women pilots were incredible, and Bess really stands out for her perseverance and courage. Lovely post.

  11. As a historian, I loved the info on Bess Coleman. Thanks for sharing!

  12. I cannot believe I have never heard of Bess Coleman! What an inspiration! Now I am dying to know more about her story. Thanks for the great post!

  13. This is so intriguing! A must-read for sure!


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