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Friday, March 24, 2017


Strong Women in Story – by Kristina Stanley

When Connie invited me to guest blog on the topic of strong women, my mind raced with possibilities.

She asked what does the phrase, “Strong Women” mean to me. I had to think about that. Strong physically? Strong emotionally? A combination of the two.

My gut reaction was to say a strong woman is independent. By that I mean, a woman who can take care of herself. Not that she should do that all the time, or that she shouldn’t rely on others, but that she can if she has to.

This led me to think about the protagonist I write about. Kalin Thompson is the protagonist in the Stone Mountain Series. She first appears in DESCENT.

She’s in love with Ben Timlin but has a life of her own. She relies on him but doesn’t need him. She cares for him and for their dog, Chica, sometimes at the expense of herself and sometimes not.

When Kalin Thompson is promoted to Director of Security at Stone Mountain Resort, she soon becomes entangled in the high-profile murder investigation of an up-and-coming Olympic-caliber skier. There are more suspects with motives than there are gates on the super-G course, and danger mounts with every turn.

Kalin’s boss orders her to investigate. Her boyfriend wants her to stay safe and let the cops do their job. Torn between loyalty to friends and professional duty, Kalin must look within her isolated community to unearth the killer’s identity. 

Strong female characters are smart.

Kalin is a director at a ski resort in change of security and human resources. To do this job well, she must use her brains.

Strong female characters are proactive.

Kalin actively searches for the killer of a skier who was murdered at her mountain. Even though her life is in danger, she tries to do what’s right for the murdered skier, her friends, and her coworkers.

Strong female characters stand up for others who aren’t as strong.

Kalin looks after others at the resort who are in need of her help. She’s kind when required and tough when she has to be.

Does that mean women in real life who are smart, proactive and stand up for others are strong? You tell me. I’d love to hear in the comments what you think the characteristics of a strong female protagonist are.


KristinaStanley is the best-selling author of the Stone Mountain Mystery Series. Her first two
novels garnered the attention of prestigious crime writing organizations in Canada and England. Crime Writers of Canada nominated DESCENT (Imajin Books, July 2015) for the Unhanged Arthur award. The Crime Writers’ Association nominated BLAZE (Imajin Books, Oct 2015) for the Debut Dagger. Imajin Books published her third novel in the series, AVALANCHE, in June 2016.

Her short stories have been published in the Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and The Voices From the Valleys anthology. She is the author of THE AUTHOR’S GUIDE TO SELLING BOOKS TO NON-BOOKSTORES.

As the co-founder and CEO of Feedback Innovations, a company started to help writers rewrite better fiction. She loves the self-editing process and wants to help other writers learn how to do a structural edit on their own work.

If you’d like more self-editing tips, you can find out more about her and Feedback at Connect with her @FictionRewrite.

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