Mischief and Mistletoe β€” the genesis

Anne here, doing a kind of Ask A Wench β€” talking about how our Wenchly anthology, MISCHIEF AND MISTLETOE  (released on 25th September) came about. We think it's the first time a group of authors who blog together have brought out an anthology together. To illustrate the process, I'm using snippets of the email discussion the Wenches had in working out the concept. They're all in blue, so you'll have to guess who said what.
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The idea originally came up in a discussion in Mary Jo's room at the RWA National conference in Washington DC in 2009, where Mary Jo, Jo, Pat, Nicola, and I had all met for the first time as wenches. We talked about doing an anthology together, agreed it was a great idea and then… got swept up in various activities and forgot about it.

In August, 2010 Pat raised the idea again on the wenchly loop. Her email started: I'm procrastinating major big time, as may be obvious. <G>
She suggested we could each write a story of around ten to twelve thousand words, either with an overall story arc, or based around a loose theme.
"We just need a tie-in factor."

Anne: I have to say, we all seized on the idea with enthusiasm and the suggestions flew thick and fast. The discussion went something like this:

*We could set all the stories under a full moon or at the time of a full moon.

*Love the anthology idea, and the idea of a loose theme, by moonlight or otherwise.
 

*I quite like the idea that the moon is involved — maybe "They met  by moonlight" or  "Wenches by Moonlight" or something like that. One moonlight scene in each story and that's the connection.


Moonatsea*With any concept we'd have to make sure we had a variety of themes and no outright repetition of them. But beyond that, lots of scope for variety.

*This is why I like doing short projects.  Feeds the muse, who likes variety.

Anne again: Most of us loved the full moon idea but then we discovered it had already been done, so that was that. But we thought Winter might be a good time of year to set the stories in. We thought we should have wenches in the title, as it was a celebration of the Word Wench group, and then for a while we debated the idea of wicked wenches.

*I keep thinking Wicked Wenches.
Then the link could be wickedness. I think it would have to be a  fairly serious badness, but it could be theft, a really bad lie, sex, treason, all kinds of things. Or even, probably only by one Wench, an  unjust reputation for wickedness. Or does anyone fancy the 7 deadly  sins? *G*

*The Wicked Wenches has possibility! Since there are 8 of us, 7 sins probably aren't enough. And I'm not sure I want to argue over who gets Gluttony. πŸ™‚
Servingwench

*Deliberately wicked – because she has no choice.
I like. Oh there are so many wicked little things a heroine could do that can be justified in a romance plot…

*What are the side effects if we brainstorm this during a retrograde?  <g>

*Actually, considering that the idea was first bruited about more than a year ago at the DC RWA conference, returning to it on a retrograde makes sense. 

*I'm not sure about having "wicked" in the title. It suggests more erotic stories, and I don't think that's what we're going for here.

Anne here: We all agreed that we wouldn't have "wicked" in the title, because it would make people expect more erotic stories, but we still liked the idea of some kind of wickedness in the story. But how wicked is wicked? And could we still make our heroines likable?

*I don't know that I would want to put a level of badness, since it could be relative. A proper young lady who slips outside to kiss under the full moon might be called a wicked wench by her parents. Just depends on the level of conflict we want.

*True, but I always feel cheated if a story in an anthology seems to wimp out on an edgy concept. I don't think it means the wickedness has to be awful, but it has to  have that edge to it.
But you're right that it's relative. The proper young lady being caught with her clothing considerably disheveled, with a man with a very wicked reputation could do it. Whereas if the Wench were a whore, it wouldn't be seen as wicked at all!


BlueMoon*I "vote" for Wicked Wenches, with maybe a moonlight theme, if others like it. (In other words, I'm easy, and quite happy to go with the flow.)  

*My vote would also be for WICKED WENCHES, and if people want to add moonlight, all the better. <G>
 

*Yup, I'm happy with this. I suspect the "wicked" will push me out of my comfort zone, which is a good thing.

*Good point about comfort zone. It's always good for us to go out on the edge, wherever that edge is for us personally.

*I'd say as soon as anyone has a wicked concept they want to use they should toss it out so that others can try not to use the same thing.

*Okay, if we want to do Wicked Wenches, then we want to make it deliberately edgy? Not sweet misses kissing in the moonlight but a miss who has deliberately done something she knows is wrong.

Anne again: I'll spare you the rest of the discussion β€” we made long lists of different kinds of wickedness, and as for titles β€” well, we have dozens.
But the stories were, in the end, linked in the following ways:β€” a dash of wickedness during the winter season, which for some of us also meant the holiday season. Hence the title, Mischief and Mistletoe. Most of the stories also involved an inn, named after a wench of some sort. Mine was the Wench and Haggis Inn, so you can guess where my story is set.

Mine's called The Mistletoe Bride and here's the set-up. Ronan McAllister must marry an Englishwoman to receive his inheritance but having one distastrous marriage behind him, he's reluctant to marry again. His lawyer offers to find him a dying woman to marry and reluctantly Ronan agrees.(You can read the scene here)

Of course the scheme goes wrong, there is a mix-up at the inn, and Marguerite Blackett-Smith finds herself with a wicked choice. Here's a tiny snippet of the story.

     The thought of having to leave this cozy, friendly house and take up residence with an uncle who was the most notorious skinflint in the county made her stomach sink with dread. But there was no help to it β€” they thought she was Peggy Smith andβ€”
    
And Peggy Smith was dead.
    
Peggy Smith, who'd promised to marry a man for money and then disappear from his life, no questions asked.    
    
What if . . ?

I have to say, I really enjoyed writing this story. It did stretch me out of my comfort zone a little, writing a heroine who deliberately does something wicked, but I liked Marguerite and I really enjoyed watching Ronan open up to her in the end.(You knew it was going to end happily, right?)

I also really enjoyed reading the other wenches stories β€” it's a wonderful demonstration of our different voices and I have to say, I'm very proud to be part of this collection.

So, I'm giving away a copy of Mischief and Mistletoe, and I want to ask you, how wicked is wicked when we're talking romance heroines? Are heroines harder to redeem than heroes? Have you ever read a book where the heroine was, in your view, unredeemable? Did any author make you change your mind? Or if you don't want to wrap your head around wickedness, what's one of your favorite holiday stories? 

230 thoughts on “Mischief and Mistletoe β€” the genesis”

  1. Fascinated to read about your brainstorming process! I do think wickedness is tricky in a heroine. Can’t actually think of any truly wicked heroines I’ve enjoyed … Both Loretta Chase and Mary Balogh have had courtesan heroines, but we understand exactly why they have taken that course and that doesn’t count as wickedness in my book.
    For me, wicked is more than just naughty or deceitful or immoral, all of which are fine in a heroine if her motivation is clear. Hhhmmn, you’ve got me thinking now ….
    Love the premise of Mistletoe Bride, btw!

    Reply
  2. Fascinated to read about your brainstorming process! I do think wickedness is tricky in a heroine. Can’t actually think of any truly wicked heroines I’ve enjoyed … Both Loretta Chase and Mary Balogh have had courtesan heroines, but we understand exactly why they have taken that course and that doesn’t count as wickedness in my book.
    For me, wicked is more than just naughty or deceitful or immoral, all of which are fine in a heroine if her motivation is clear. Hhhmmn, you’ve got me thinking now ….
    Love the premise of Mistletoe Bride, btw!

    Reply
  3. Fascinated to read about your brainstorming process! I do think wickedness is tricky in a heroine. Can’t actually think of any truly wicked heroines I’ve enjoyed … Both Loretta Chase and Mary Balogh have had courtesan heroines, but we understand exactly why they have taken that course and that doesn’t count as wickedness in my book.
    For me, wicked is more than just naughty or deceitful or immoral, all of which are fine in a heroine if her motivation is clear. Hhhmmn, you’ve got me thinking now ….
    Love the premise of Mistletoe Bride, btw!

    Reply
  4. Fascinated to read about your brainstorming process! I do think wickedness is tricky in a heroine. Can’t actually think of any truly wicked heroines I’ve enjoyed … Both Loretta Chase and Mary Balogh have had courtesan heroines, but we understand exactly why they have taken that course and that doesn’t count as wickedness in my book.
    For me, wicked is more than just naughty or deceitful or immoral, all of which are fine in a heroine if her motivation is clear. Hhhmmn, you’ve got me thinking now ….
    Love the premise of Mistletoe Bride, btw!

    Reply
  5. Fascinated to read about your brainstorming process! I do think wickedness is tricky in a heroine. Can’t actually think of any truly wicked heroines I’ve enjoyed … Both Loretta Chase and Mary Balogh have had courtesan heroines, but we understand exactly why they have taken that course and that doesn’t count as wickedness in my book.
    For me, wicked is more than just naughty or deceitful or immoral, all of which are fine in a heroine if her motivation is clear. Hhhmmn, you’ve got me thinking now ….
    Love the premise of Mistletoe Bride, btw!

    Reply
  6. I eagerly await Mischief and Mistletoe. I love holiday stories and I love Wench books, so this one is sure to be a favorite.
    As for a heroine’s wickedness, I think wrongness–or wrongheadedness–that springs from immaturity or particular circumstances is forgivable. Flaws make characters more human and thus more credible. But wicked acts that come from greedy, selfish hearts are much harder to forgive, and it takes a gifted writer to persuade me such characters are redeemable. I think generally romance readers are quicker to forgive heroes, but I do have some favorite books in which the heroine is redeemed. Lady Annabelle Wylde (To Wed a Stranger by Edith Layton), Lady Helena Stapleton (The Christmas Bride by Mary Balogh), and Bathsheba Compton, the Countess of Randolph (My Favorite Countess by Vanessa Kelly) come to mind. And in contemporary romance, there’s the unforgettable Sugar Beth Carey (Ain’t She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips).

    Reply
  7. I eagerly await Mischief and Mistletoe. I love holiday stories and I love Wench books, so this one is sure to be a favorite.
    As for a heroine’s wickedness, I think wrongness–or wrongheadedness–that springs from immaturity or particular circumstances is forgivable. Flaws make characters more human and thus more credible. But wicked acts that come from greedy, selfish hearts are much harder to forgive, and it takes a gifted writer to persuade me such characters are redeemable. I think generally romance readers are quicker to forgive heroes, but I do have some favorite books in which the heroine is redeemed. Lady Annabelle Wylde (To Wed a Stranger by Edith Layton), Lady Helena Stapleton (The Christmas Bride by Mary Balogh), and Bathsheba Compton, the Countess of Randolph (My Favorite Countess by Vanessa Kelly) come to mind. And in contemporary romance, there’s the unforgettable Sugar Beth Carey (Ain’t She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips).

    Reply
  8. I eagerly await Mischief and Mistletoe. I love holiday stories and I love Wench books, so this one is sure to be a favorite.
    As for a heroine’s wickedness, I think wrongness–or wrongheadedness–that springs from immaturity or particular circumstances is forgivable. Flaws make characters more human and thus more credible. But wicked acts that come from greedy, selfish hearts are much harder to forgive, and it takes a gifted writer to persuade me such characters are redeemable. I think generally romance readers are quicker to forgive heroes, but I do have some favorite books in which the heroine is redeemed. Lady Annabelle Wylde (To Wed a Stranger by Edith Layton), Lady Helena Stapleton (The Christmas Bride by Mary Balogh), and Bathsheba Compton, the Countess of Randolph (My Favorite Countess by Vanessa Kelly) come to mind. And in contemporary romance, there’s the unforgettable Sugar Beth Carey (Ain’t She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips).

    Reply
  9. I eagerly await Mischief and Mistletoe. I love holiday stories and I love Wench books, so this one is sure to be a favorite.
    As for a heroine’s wickedness, I think wrongness–or wrongheadedness–that springs from immaturity or particular circumstances is forgivable. Flaws make characters more human and thus more credible. But wicked acts that come from greedy, selfish hearts are much harder to forgive, and it takes a gifted writer to persuade me such characters are redeemable. I think generally romance readers are quicker to forgive heroes, but I do have some favorite books in which the heroine is redeemed. Lady Annabelle Wylde (To Wed a Stranger by Edith Layton), Lady Helena Stapleton (The Christmas Bride by Mary Balogh), and Bathsheba Compton, the Countess of Randolph (My Favorite Countess by Vanessa Kelly) come to mind. And in contemporary romance, there’s the unforgettable Sugar Beth Carey (Ain’t She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips).

    Reply
  10. I eagerly await Mischief and Mistletoe. I love holiday stories and I love Wench books, so this one is sure to be a favorite.
    As for a heroine’s wickedness, I think wrongness–or wrongheadedness–that springs from immaturity or particular circumstances is forgivable. Flaws make characters more human and thus more credible. But wicked acts that come from greedy, selfish hearts are much harder to forgive, and it takes a gifted writer to persuade me such characters are redeemable. I think generally romance readers are quicker to forgive heroes, but I do have some favorite books in which the heroine is redeemed. Lady Annabelle Wylde (To Wed a Stranger by Edith Layton), Lady Helena Stapleton (The Christmas Bride by Mary Balogh), and Bathsheba Compton, the Countess of Randolph (My Favorite Countess by Vanessa Kelly) come to mind. And in contemporary romance, there’s the unforgettable Sugar Beth Carey (Ain’t She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips).

    Reply
  11. One of my favorite holiday stories is a heroine who redeems herself by traveling back in time. She goes back to the point just before everything crashed and burned.

    Reply
  12. One of my favorite holiday stories is a heroine who redeems herself by traveling back in time. She goes back to the point just before everything crashed and burned.

    Reply
  13. One of my favorite holiday stories is a heroine who redeems herself by traveling back in time. She goes back to the point just before everything crashed and burned.

    Reply
  14. One of my favorite holiday stories is a heroine who redeems herself by traveling back in time. She goes back to the point just before everything crashed and burned.

    Reply
  15. One of my favorite holiday stories is a heroine who redeems herself by traveling back in time. She goes back to the point just before everything crashed and burned.

    Reply
  16. My favorite sort of “wicked” is someone who through rebellion or bad circumstances has done things she really shouldn’t have and who acknowledges it and puts her (or his) life together. Or else someone who’s been too straitlaced and needs to go a little wild. I’m just saying that “wicked” is very much subjective.
    And that I like it when people figure themselves out. I’m still working on that for myself πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  17. My favorite sort of “wicked” is someone who through rebellion or bad circumstances has done things she really shouldn’t have and who acknowledges it and puts her (or his) life together. Or else someone who’s been too straitlaced and needs to go a little wild. I’m just saying that “wicked” is very much subjective.
    And that I like it when people figure themselves out. I’m still working on that for myself πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  18. My favorite sort of “wicked” is someone who through rebellion or bad circumstances has done things she really shouldn’t have and who acknowledges it and puts her (or his) life together. Or else someone who’s been too straitlaced and needs to go a little wild. I’m just saying that “wicked” is very much subjective.
    And that I like it when people figure themselves out. I’m still working on that for myself πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  19. My favorite sort of “wicked” is someone who through rebellion or bad circumstances has done things she really shouldn’t have and who acknowledges it and puts her (or his) life together. Or else someone who’s been too straitlaced and needs to go a little wild. I’m just saying that “wicked” is very much subjective.
    And that I like it when people figure themselves out. I’m still working on that for myself πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  20. My favorite sort of “wicked” is someone who through rebellion or bad circumstances has done things she really shouldn’t have and who acknowledges it and puts her (or his) life together. Or else someone who’s been too straitlaced and needs to go a little wild. I’m just saying that “wicked” is very much subjective.
    And that I like it when people figure themselves out. I’m still working on that for myself πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  21. I’ve read books where a secondary character is wicked…. but in a subsequent book you find out the whys and wherefores of the wickedness.. now if the titles would just come to me magically… older and wiser, but more forgetful…

    Reply
  22. I’ve read books where a secondary character is wicked…. but in a subsequent book you find out the whys and wherefores of the wickedness.. now if the titles would just come to me magically… older and wiser, but more forgetful…

    Reply
  23. I’ve read books where a secondary character is wicked…. but in a subsequent book you find out the whys and wherefores of the wickedness.. now if the titles would just come to me magically… older and wiser, but more forgetful…

    Reply
  24. I’ve read books where a secondary character is wicked…. but in a subsequent book you find out the whys and wherefores of the wickedness.. now if the titles would just come to me magically… older and wiser, but more forgetful…

    Reply
  25. I’ve read books where a secondary character is wicked…. but in a subsequent book you find out the whys and wherefores of the wickedness.. now if the titles would just come to me magically… older and wiser, but more forgetful…

    Reply
  26. SO looking forward to reading this anthology! All of my favorite writers in one place!
    I think heroines are definitely harder to redeem than heroes. Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.
    Wicked has so many connotations in romance novels. Wicked often means naughty, or socially inappropriate or simply scandalous. Women like that are right up my alley!
    However when wicked crosses the line into mean or evil I have problems with that sort of behavior in heroines.
    And I can think of one historical romance I read a few years ago in which I heartily disliked the hero AND the heroine. To give the author her due I had to keep reading, her writing simply gave me no choice! However, at the end of the book I was screaming at the hero “RUN! Get out! You can do better!”

    Reply
  27. SO looking forward to reading this anthology! All of my favorite writers in one place!
    I think heroines are definitely harder to redeem than heroes. Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.
    Wicked has so many connotations in romance novels. Wicked often means naughty, or socially inappropriate or simply scandalous. Women like that are right up my alley!
    However when wicked crosses the line into mean or evil I have problems with that sort of behavior in heroines.
    And I can think of one historical romance I read a few years ago in which I heartily disliked the hero AND the heroine. To give the author her due I had to keep reading, her writing simply gave me no choice! However, at the end of the book I was screaming at the hero “RUN! Get out! You can do better!”

    Reply
  28. SO looking forward to reading this anthology! All of my favorite writers in one place!
    I think heroines are definitely harder to redeem than heroes. Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.
    Wicked has so many connotations in romance novels. Wicked often means naughty, or socially inappropriate or simply scandalous. Women like that are right up my alley!
    However when wicked crosses the line into mean or evil I have problems with that sort of behavior in heroines.
    And I can think of one historical romance I read a few years ago in which I heartily disliked the hero AND the heroine. To give the author her due I had to keep reading, her writing simply gave me no choice! However, at the end of the book I was screaming at the hero “RUN! Get out! You can do better!”

    Reply
  29. SO looking forward to reading this anthology! All of my favorite writers in one place!
    I think heroines are definitely harder to redeem than heroes. Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.
    Wicked has so many connotations in romance novels. Wicked often means naughty, or socially inappropriate or simply scandalous. Women like that are right up my alley!
    However when wicked crosses the line into mean or evil I have problems with that sort of behavior in heroines.
    And I can think of one historical romance I read a few years ago in which I heartily disliked the hero AND the heroine. To give the author her due I had to keep reading, her writing simply gave me no choice! However, at the end of the book I was screaming at the hero “RUN! Get out! You can do better!”

    Reply
  30. SO looking forward to reading this anthology! All of my favorite writers in one place!
    I think heroines are definitely harder to redeem than heroes. Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.
    Wicked has so many connotations in romance novels. Wicked often means naughty, or socially inappropriate or simply scandalous. Women like that are right up my alley!
    However when wicked crosses the line into mean or evil I have problems with that sort of behavior in heroines.
    And I can think of one historical romance I read a few years ago in which I heartily disliked the hero AND the heroine. To give the author her due I had to keep reading, her writing simply gave me no choice! However, at the end of the book I was screaming at the hero “RUN! Get out! You can do better!”

    Reply
  31. Thanks, Pam β€” this was really only the tip of the iceberg of the emails exchanged, but it was nothing like the enormous pile of emails Nicola and co had when they did a linked anthology, which was something over 300 emails, I seem to recall. I guess the linking was the tricky part for them, whereas we pretty much just fell into place.
    The wickedness was probably the most discussed, and I hope you all think it was justified in each case.

    Reply
  32. Thanks, Pam β€” this was really only the tip of the iceberg of the emails exchanged, but it was nothing like the enormous pile of emails Nicola and co had when they did a linked anthology, which was something over 300 emails, I seem to recall. I guess the linking was the tricky part for them, whereas we pretty much just fell into place.
    The wickedness was probably the most discussed, and I hope you all think it was justified in each case.

    Reply
  33. Thanks, Pam β€” this was really only the tip of the iceberg of the emails exchanged, but it was nothing like the enormous pile of emails Nicola and co had when they did a linked anthology, which was something over 300 emails, I seem to recall. I guess the linking was the tricky part for them, whereas we pretty much just fell into place.
    The wickedness was probably the most discussed, and I hope you all think it was justified in each case.

    Reply
  34. Thanks, Pam β€” this was really only the tip of the iceberg of the emails exchanged, but it was nothing like the enormous pile of emails Nicola and co had when they did a linked anthology, which was something over 300 emails, I seem to recall. I guess the linking was the tricky part for them, whereas we pretty much just fell into place.
    The wickedness was probably the most discussed, and I hope you all think it was justified in each case.

    Reply
  35. Thanks, Pam β€” this was really only the tip of the iceberg of the emails exchanged, but it was nothing like the enormous pile of emails Nicola and co had when they did a linked anthology, which was something over 300 emails, I seem to recall. I guess the linking was the tricky part for them, whereas we pretty much just fell into place.
    The wickedness was probably the most discussed, and I hope you all think it was justified in each case.

    Reply
  36. I do love the quality of exchange we often get in the comments β€” it’s the reason I became a wenchly blog readers long before I met any of the wenches.
    Janga, I do agree that youth/immaturity is a reasonable excuse in some cases. I also think it needs a longer book to be able to redeem a character from a true deed of wickedness, and I doubt I’d have the fortitude for it. I have to like my heroines myself. I liked your list of redeemed heroines β€” haven’t read them all, but am filled with a need to reread the Balogh and the SEP

    Reply
  37. I do love the quality of exchange we often get in the comments β€” it’s the reason I became a wenchly blog readers long before I met any of the wenches.
    Janga, I do agree that youth/immaturity is a reasonable excuse in some cases. I also think it needs a longer book to be able to redeem a character from a true deed of wickedness, and I doubt I’d have the fortitude for it. I have to like my heroines myself. I liked your list of redeemed heroines β€” haven’t read them all, but am filled with a need to reread the Balogh and the SEP

    Reply
  38. I do love the quality of exchange we often get in the comments β€” it’s the reason I became a wenchly blog readers long before I met any of the wenches.
    Janga, I do agree that youth/immaturity is a reasonable excuse in some cases. I also think it needs a longer book to be able to redeem a character from a true deed of wickedness, and I doubt I’d have the fortitude for it. I have to like my heroines myself. I liked your list of redeemed heroines β€” haven’t read them all, but am filled with a need to reread the Balogh and the SEP

    Reply
  39. I do love the quality of exchange we often get in the comments β€” it’s the reason I became a wenchly blog readers long before I met any of the wenches.
    Janga, I do agree that youth/immaturity is a reasonable excuse in some cases. I also think it needs a longer book to be able to redeem a character from a true deed of wickedness, and I doubt I’d have the fortitude for it. I have to like my heroines myself. I liked your list of redeemed heroines β€” haven’t read them all, but am filled with a need to reread the Balogh and the SEP

    Reply
  40. I do love the quality of exchange we often get in the comments β€” it’s the reason I became a wenchly blog readers long before I met any of the wenches.
    Janga, I do agree that youth/immaturity is a reasonable excuse in some cases. I also think it needs a longer book to be able to redeem a character from a true deed of wickedness, and I doubt I’d have the fortitude for it. I have to like my heroines myself. I liked your list of redeemed heroines β€” haven’t read them all, but am filled with a need to reread the Balogh and the SEP

    Reply
  41. Kate, that’s an interesting thought β€” and a great plot device. I can’t help but wonder whether something she does when she goes back in time could result in some even worse result, though. *g*
    Phyllis, I agree. I think in that case the act of wickedness is ameliorated by the courage it takes to admit you did the wrong thing and then try to fix it.
    And yes, we’re all on a long learning curve as far as self-knowledge is concerned.

    Reply
  42. Kate, that’s an interesting thought β€” and a great plot device. I can’t help but wonder whether something she does when she goes back in time could result in some even worse result, though. *g*
    Phyllis, I agree. I think in that case the act of wickedness is ameliorated by the courage it takes to admit you did the wrong thing and then try to fix it.
    And yes, we’re all on a long learning curve as far as self-knowledge is concerned.

    Reply
  43. Kate, that’s an interesting thought β€” and a great plot device. I can’t help but wonder whether something she does when she goes back in time could result in some even worse result, though. *g*
    Phyllis, I agree. I think in that case the act of wickedness is ameliorated by the courage it takes to admit you did the wrong thing and then try to fix it.
    And yes, we’re all on a long learning curve as far as self-knowledge is concerned.

    Reply
  44. Kate, that’s an interesting thought β€” and a great plot device. I can’t help but wonder whether something she does when she goes back in time could result in some even worse result, though. *g*
    Phyllis, I agree. I think in that case the act of wickedness is ameliorated by the courage it takes to admit you did the wrong thing and then try to fix it.
    And yes, we’re all on a long learning curve as far as self-knowledge is concerned.

    Reply
  45. Kate, that’s an interesting thought β€” and a great plot device. I can’t help but wonder whether something she does when she goes back in time could result in some even worse result, though. *g*
    Phyllis, I agree. I think in that case the act of wickedness is ameliorated by the courage it takes to admit you did the wrong thing and then try to fix it.
    And yes, we’re all on a long learning curve as far as self-knowledge is concerned.

    Reply
  46. LOL Cate β€” I think wisdom is the most important.
    There was a Mary Balogh book where a secondary character was wicked β€” for the sake of the heroine’s fortune he tried to force her to elope with him and failed. Then in the next book he’s still a fortune hunter and marries a woman for her fortune. . . but Balogh (and the heroine) redeem him wonderfully. The first book, I think, is TEMPTING HARRIET and the second one is DANCING WITH CLARA.
    Thanks for prompting me to remember those books.

    Reply
  47. LOL Cate β€” I think wisdom is the most important.
    There was a Mary Balogh book where a secondary character was wicked β€” for the sake of the heroine’s fortune he tried to force her to elope with him and failed. Then in the next book he’s still a fortune hunter and marries a woman for her fortune. . . but Balogh (and the heroine) redeem him wonderfully. The first book, I think, is TEMPTING HARRIET and the second one is DANCING WITH CLARA.
    Thanks for prompting me to remember those books.

    Reply
  48. LOL Cate β€” I think wisdom is the most important.
    There was a Mary Balogh book where a secondary character was wicked β€” for the sake of the heroine’s fortune he tried to force her to elope with him and failed. Then in the next book he’s still a fortune hunter and marries a woman for her fortune. . . but Balogh (and the heroine) redeem him wonderfully. The first book, I think, is TEMPTING HARRIET and the second one is DANCING WITH CLARA.
    Thanks for prompting me to remember those books.

    Reply
  49. LOL Cate β€” I think wisdom is the most important.
    There was a Mary Balogh book where a secondary character was wicked β€” for the sake of the heroine’s fortune he tried to force her to elope with him and failed. Then in the next book he’s still a fortune hunter and marries a woman for her fortune. . . but Balogh (and the heroine) redeem him wonderfully. The first book, I think, is TEMPTING HARRIET and the second one is DANCING WITH CLARA.
    Thanks for prompting me to remember those books.

    Reply
  50. LOL Cate β€” I think wisdom is the most important.
    There was a Mary Balogh book where a secondary character was wicked β€” for the sake of the heroine’s fortune he tried to force her to elope with him and failed. Then in the next book he’s still a fortune hunter and marries a woman for her fortune. . . but Balogh (and the heroine) redeem him wonderfully. The first book, I think, is TEMPTING HARRIET and the second one is DANCING WITH CLARA.
    Thanks for prompting me to remember those books.

    Reply
  51. ” Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.”
    That’s so true, isn’t it Louisa? I remember telling a roomful of aspiring writers that they needed to imagine their readers as potentially critical mothers-in-law β€” the heroine has to really deserve their lovely boy. πŸ˜‰
    Interesting the distinction between a wicked and a mean act β€” somehow we can imagine there might be a reason for the wicked one, but mean? That’s just mean.

    Reply
  52. ” Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.”
    That’s so true, isn’t it Louisa? I remember telling a roomful of aspiring writers that they needed to imagine their readers as potentially critical mothers-in-law β€” the heroine has to really deserve their lovely boy. πŸ˜‰
    Interesting the distinction between a wicked and a mean act β€” somehow we can imagine there might be a reason for the wicked one, but mean? That’s just mean.

    Reply
  53. ” Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.”
    That’s so true, isn’t it Louisa? I remember telling a roomful of aspiring writers that they needed to imagine their readers as potentially critical mothers-in-law β€” the heroine has to really deserve their lovely boy. πŸ˜‰
    Interesting the distinction between a wicked and a mean act β€” somehow we can imagine there might be a reason for the wicked one, but mean? That’s just mean.

    Reply
  54. ” Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.”
    That’s so true, isn’t it Louisa? I remember telling a roomful of aspiring writers that they needed to imagine their readers as potentially critical mothers-in-law β€” the heroine has to really deserve their lovely boy. πŸ˜‰
    Interesting the distinction between a wicked and a mean act β€” somehow we can imagine there might be a reason for the wicked one, but mean? That’s just mean.

    Reply
  55. ” Women are far more harsh on other women than they are on men.”
    That’s so true, isn’t it Louisa? I remember telling a roomful of aspiring writers that they needed to imagine their readers as potentially critical mothers-in-law β€” the heroine has to really deserve their lovely boy. πŸ˜‰
    Interesting the distinction between a wicked and a mean act β€” somehow we can imagine there might be a reason for the wicked one, but mean? That’s just mean.

    Reply
  56. Thanks, Kelly β€” I have to say, I never used to be a big reader of short stories, but maybe I have less time these days, because I really enjoy them now. I’ve also discovered that I love writing them, too. Who knew?

    Reply
  57. Thanks, Kelly β€” I have to say, I never used to be a big reader of short stories, but maybe I have less time these days, because I really enjoy them now. I’ve also discovered that I love writing them, too. Who knew?

    Reply
  58. Thanks, Kelly β€” I have to say, I never used to be a big reader of short stories, but maybe I have less time these days, because I really enjoy them now. I’ve also discovered that I love writing them, too. Who knew?

    Reply
  59. Thanks, Kelly β€” I have to say, I never used to be a big reader of short stories, but maybe I have less time these days, because I really enjoy them now. I’ve also discovered that I love writing them, too. Who knew?

    Reply
  60. Thanks, Kelly β€” I have to say, I never used to be a big reader of short stories, but maybe I have less time these days, because I really enjoy them now. I’ve also discovered that I love writing them, too. Who knew?

    Reply
  61. I agree with the one who said that wicked was more than haughty or a little naughty. Editors seem to like the word wicked, though, and include it in the general bad boy trope.
    I am not a fan of bad boy stories. I do have double standard. I will put up with a bit of sexual freedom on the man’s part, but usually careless for stories featuring a woman who does likewise.
    Now, mischief is a different sort of bad behaviour. Unfortunately I associate it with stuff like practical jokes which I hate.
    Still, the anthology sounds great– how can it miss with such wonderful writers?

    Reply
  62. I agree with the one who said that wicked was more than haughty or a little naughty. Editors seem to like the word wicked, though, and include it in the general bad boy trope.
    I am not a fan of bad boy stories. I do have double standard. I will put up with a bit of sexual freedom on the man’s part, but usually careless for stories featuring a woman who does likewise.
    Now, mischief is a different sort of bad behaviour. Unfortunately I associate it with stuff like practical jokes which I hate.
    Still, the anthology sounds great– how can it miss with such wonderful writers?

    Reply
  63. I agree with the one who said that wicked was more than haughty or a little naughty. Editors seem to like the word wicked, though, and include it in the general bad boy trope.
    I am not a fan of bad boy stories. I do have double standard. I will put up with a bit of sexual freedom on the man’s part, but usually careless for stories featuring a woman who does likewise.
    Now, mischief is a different sort of bad behaviour. Unfortunately I associate it with stuff like practical jokes which I hate.
    Still, the anthology sounds great– how can it miss with such wonderful writers?

    Reply
  64. I agree with the one who said that wicked was more than haughty or a little naughty. Editors seem to like the word wicked, though, and include it in the general bad boy trope.
    I am not a fan of bad boy stories. I do have double standard. I will put up with a bit of sexual freedom on the man’s part, but usually careless for stories featuring a woman who does likewise.
    Now, mischief is a different sort of bad behaviour. Unfortunately I associate it with stuff like practical jokes which I hate.
    Still, the anthology sounds great– how can it miss with such wonderful writers?

    Reply
  65. I agree with the one who said that wicked was more than haughty or a little naughty. Editors seem to like the word wicked, though, and include it in the general bad boy trope.
    I am not a fan of bad boy stories. I do have double standard. I will put up with a bit of sexual freedom on the man’s part, but usually careless for stories featuring a woman who does likewise.
    Now, mischief is a different sort of bad behaviour. Unfortunately I associate it with stuff like practical jokes which I hate.
    Still, the anthology sounds great– how can it miss with such wonderful writers?

    Reply
  66. Oooooooh – A Christmas theme book! I have a positive ORGY of Christmas themed reading in December each year then from January to November I gather the next Christmas hord. This has gone on my MUST by list for this year πŸ™‚
    My idea of a wicked heroine is one whom society perceives as wicked, is even made to feel they are wicked, but the hero realizes she isn’t at all wicked really – just misunderstood!

    Reply
  67. Oooooooh – A Christmas theme book! I have a positive ORGY of Christmas themed reading in December each year then from January to November I gather the next Christmas hord. This has gone on my MUST by list for this year πŸ™‚
    My idea of a wicked heroine is one whom society perceives as wicked, is even made to feel they are wicked, but the hero realizes she isn’t at all wicked really – just misunderstood!

    Reply
  68. Oooooooh – A Christmas theme book! I have a positive ORGY of Christmas themed reading in December each year then from January to November I gather the next Christmas hord. This has gone on my MUST by list for this year πŸ™‚
    My idea of a wicked heroine is one whom society perceives as wicked, is even made to feel they are wicked, but the hero realizes she isn’t at all wicked really – just misunderstood!

    Reply
  69. Oooooooh – A Christmas theme book! I have a positive ORGY of Christmas themed reading in December each year then from January to November I gather the next Christmas hord. This has gone on my MUST by list for this year πŸ™‚
    My idea of a wicked heroine is one whom society perceives as wicked, is even made to feel they are wicked, but the hero realizes she isn’t at all wicked really – just misunderstood!

    Reply
  70. Oooooooh – A Christmas theme book! I have a positive ORGY of Christmas themed reading in December each year then from January to November I gather the next Christmas hord. This has gone on my MUST by list for this year πŸ™‚
    My idea of a wicked heroine is one whom society perceives as wicked, is even made to feel they are wicked, but the hero realizes she isn’t at all wicked really – just misunderstood!

    Reply
  71. Nancy, I think you’re a lot like many readers β€” we tend to forgive things in a man more easily than we will with a woman.
    I hope you enjoy the anthology. i certainly did.
    Lynette, hope you enjoy it, too. Good luck in the draw.
    Sally, I think there’s a fine and interesting line between wicked and misunderstood. I hope you’ll enjoy exploring it in our stories.

    Reply
  72. Nancy, I think you’re a lot like many readers β€” we tend to forgive things in a man more easily than we will with a woman.
    I hope you enjoy the anthology. i certainly did.
    Lynette, hope you enjoy it, too. Good luck in the draw.
    Sally, I think there’s a fine and interesting line between wicked and misunderstood. I hope you’ll enjoy exploring it in our stories.

    Reply
  73. Nancy, I think you’re a lot like many readers β€” we tend to forgive things in a man more easily than we will with a woman.
    I hope you enjoy the anthology. i certainly did.
    Lynette, hope you enjoy it, too. Good luck in the draw.
    Sally, I think there’s a fine and interesting line between wicked and misunderstood. I hope you’ll enjoy exploring it in our stories.

    Reply
  74. Nancy, I think you’re a lot like many readers β€” we tend to forgive things in a man more easily than we will with a woman.
    I hope you enjoy the anthology. i certainly did.
    Lynette, hope you enjoy it, too. Good luck in the draw.
    Sally, I think there’s a fine and interesting line between wicked and misunderstood. I hope you’ll enjoy exploring it in our stories.

    Reply
  75. Nancy, I think you’re a lot like many readers β€” we tend to forgive things in a man more easily than we will with a woman.
    I hope you enjoy the anthology. i certainly did.
    Lynette, hope you enjoy it, too. Good luck in the draw.
    Sally, I think there’s a fine and interesting line between wicked and misunderstood. I hope you’ll enjoy exploring it in our stories.

    Reply
  76. I think what you consider wicked in a heroine or a hero and what is unforgivable varies greatly from person to person. I think it is more common for the hero to have done wrong, especially in historicals, but what I’m looking for is true remorse from the character and a change in their behavior.

    Reply
  77. I think what you consider wicked in a heroine or a hero and what is unforgivable varies greatly from person to person. I think it is more common for the hero to have done wrong, especially in historicals, but what I’m looking for is true remorse from the character and a change in their behavior.

    Reply
  78. I think what you consider wicked in a heroine or a hero and what is unforgivable varies greatly from person to person. I think it is more common for the hero to have done wrong, especially in historicals, but what I’m looking for is true remorse from the character and a change in their behavior.

    Reply
  79. I think what you consider wicked in a heroine or a hero and what is unforgivable varies greatly from person to person. I think it is more common for the hero to have done wrong, especially in historicals, but what I’m looking for is true remorse from the character and a change in their behavior.

    Reply
  80. I think what you consider wicked in a heroine or a hero and what is unforgivable varies greatly from person to person. I think it is more common for the hero to have done wrong, especially in historicals, but what I’m looking for is true remorse from the character and a change in their behavior.

    Reply
  81. I love the idea of the wenches turning wickedness inside out!!!
    For me, ‘wicked’ has sparkles on it. It’s all about pushing through social strictures with panache (mostly the ones around enjoying yourself…) It’s not about being cruel, mean, or dishonest.
    I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.
    Left brain speaking – the degree of deus ex machina that is often employed to bring this about is invariably less redeemable than the heroine!
    Right brain speaking – great story-telling can redeem anything!
    Looking forward to reading the anthology.

    Reply
  82. I love the idea of the wenches turning wickedness inside out!!!
    For me, ‘wicked’ has sparkles on it. It’s all about pushing through social strictures with panache (mostly the ones around enjoying yourself…) It’s not about being cruel, mean, or dishonest.
    I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.
    Left brain speaking – the degree of deus ex machina that is often employed to bring this about is invariably less redeemable than the heroine!
    Right brain speaking – great story-telling can redeem anything!
    Looking forward to reading the anthology.

    Reply
  83. I love the idea of the wenches turning wickedness inside out!!!
    For me, ‘wicked’ has sparkles on it. It’s all about pushing through social strictures with panache (mostly the ones around enjoying yourself…) It’s not about being cruel, mean, or dishonest.
    I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.
    Left brain speaking – the degree of deus ex machina that is often employed to bring this about is invariably less redeemable than the heroine!
    Right brain speaking – great story-telling can redeem anything!
    Looking forward to reading the anthology.

    Reply
  84. I love the idea of the wenches turning wickedness inside out!!!
    For me, ‘wicked’ has sparkles on it. It’s all about pushing through social strictures with panache (mostly the ones around enjoying yourself…) It’s not about being cruel, mean, or dishonest.
    I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.
    Left brain speaking – the degree of deus ex machina that is often employed to bring this about is invariably less redeemable than the heroine!
    Right brain speaking – great story-telling can redeem anything!
    Looking forward to reading the anthology.

    Reply
  85. I love the idea of the wenches turning wickedness inside out!!!
    For me, ‘wicked’ has sparkles on it. It’s all about pushing through social strictures with panache (mostly the ones around enjoying yourself…) It’s not about being cruel, mean, or dishonest.
    I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.
    Left brain speaking – the degree of deus ex machina that is often employed to bring this about is invariably less redeemable than the heroine!
    Right brain speaking – great story-telling can redeem anything!
    Looking forward to reading the anthology.

    Reply
  86. Oh Boy – I always look for Christmas stories (& I love anthologies) – helps get me in the mood for the holidays & all the tasks to be done – maybe I’ll even get cookies baked this year!
    As for ‘wicked’ – I don’t think I’ve ever read about a hero or heroine who were evil wicked, but wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.

    Reply
  87. Oh Boy – I always look for Christmas stories (& I love anthologies) – helps get me in the mood for the holidays & all the tasks to be done – maybe I’ll even get cookies baked this year!
    As for ‘wicked’ – I don’t think I’ve ever read about a hero or heroine who were evil wicked, but wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.

    Reply
  88. Oh Boy – I always look for Christmas stories (& I love anthologies) – helps get me in the mood for the holidays & all the tasks to be done – maybe I’ll even get cookies baked this year!
    As for ‘wicked’ – I don’t think I’ve ever read about a hero or heroine who were evil wicked, but wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.

    Reply
  89. Oh Boy – I always look for Christmas stories (& I love anthologies) – helps get me in the mood for the holidays & all the tasks to be done – maybe I’ll even get cookies baked this year!
    As for ‘wicked’ – I don’t think I’ve ever read about a hero or heroine who were evil wicked, but wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.

    Reply
  90. Oh Boy – I always look for Christmas stories (& I love anthologies) – helps get me in the mood for the holidays & all the tasks to be done – maybe I’ll even get cookies baked this year!
    As for ‘wicked’ – I don’t think I’ve ever read about a hero or heroine who were evil wicked, but wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.

    Reply
  91. If I remember correctly, wasn’t there a time when someone who was sentenced to be executed and if someone married her, the sentence was commuted(?)…
    To me, that would be a wicked woman that was redeemed… hopefully.

    Reply
  92. If I remember correctly, wasn’t there a time when someone who was sentenced to be executed and if someone married her, the sentence was commuted(?)…
    To me, that would be a wicked woman that was redeemed… hopefully.

    Reply
  93. If I remember correctly, wasn’t there a time when someone who was sentenced to be executed and if someone married her, the sentence was commuted(?)…
    To me, that would be a wicked woman that was redeemed… hopefully.

    Reply
  94. If I remember correctly, wasn’t there a time when someone who was sentenced to be executed and if someone married her, the sentence was commuted(?)…
    To me, that would be a wicked woman that was redeemed… hopefully.

    Reply
  95. If I remember correctly, wasn’t there a time when someone who was sentenced to be executed and if someone married her, the sentence was commuted(?)…
    To me, that would be a wicked woman that was redeemed… hopefully.

    Reply
  96. How about someone who does the wrong thing for what seemed at the time a good reason? Usually seems to be a little girl (Atonement, Falling Angels, Once Upon a Time)And then later as a woman has to live with the fallout, or attempts to make it right. *** My Aged Parent had a lot of those Christmas anthologies. I kept some but gave many of them away.

    Reply
  97. How about someone who does the wrong thing for what seemed at the time a good reason? Usually seems to be a little girl (Atonement, Falling Angels, Once Upon a Time)And then later as a woman has to live with the fallout, or attempts to make it right. *** My Aged Parent had a lot of those Christmas anthologies. I kept some but gave many of them away.

    Reply
  98. How about someone who does the wrong thing for what seemed at the time a good reason? Usually seems to be a little girl (Atonement, Falling Angels, Once Upon a Time)And then later as a woman has to live with the fallout, or attempts to make it right. *** My Aged Parent had a lot of those Christmas anthologies. I kept some but gave many of them away.

    Reply
  99. How about someone who does the wrong thing for what seemed at the time a good reason? Usually seems to be a little girl (Atonement, Falling Angels, Once Upon a Time)And then later as a woman has to live with the fallout, or attempts to make it right. *** My Aged Parent had a lot of those Christmas anthologies. I kept some but gave many of them away.

    Reply
  100. How about someone who does the wrong thing for what seemed at the time a good reason? Usually seems to be a little girl (Atonement, Falling Angels, Once Upon a Time)And then later as a woman has to live with the fallout, or attempts to make it right. *** My Aged Parent had a lot of those Christmas anthologies. I kept some but gave many of them away.

    Reply
  101. For romance heroines, wicked would likely mean elopement (in a historical setting), marrying a family nemesis, or in my own terms, cuckoldry, which unfortunately was not seen as truly wicked in historic times as too many people did it. I don’t think heroines are harder to redeem, because they tend to wring greater sympathy and often find themselves with lesser means and opportunities to support themselves. Most female readers would find some sympathy in a situation where the heroine has to cheat or trick the hero in something because her livelihood, or the livelihood of those she cares, is in danger. Aside from the cases in which a definite and oftentimes heroic purpose is involved, heroines would probably be disliked (like if they try to seduce the hero just for fun, or for a bet, etc). Though they appear more unredeemable in the eyes of the heroes it seems. I haven’t yet read a book where the heroine is truly evil or is utterly spiteful towards the hero for no good reason, but then again, I try to stay away from books that contain nefarious, femme fatale heroines. (The Wife Trap by Tracy Anne Warren, for example, has had the heroine so slandered and brought to be such a horrible character in the first book of the trilogy that I can’t stomach the idea of her being the heroine of her own book.)

    Reply
  102. For romance heroines, wicked would likely mean elopement (in a historical setting), marrying a family nemesis, or in my own terms, cuckoldry, which unfortunately was not seen as truly wicked in historic times as too many people did it. I don’t think heroines are harder to redeem, because they tend to wring greater sympathy and often find themselves with lesser means and opportunities to support themselves. Most female readers would find some sympathy in a situation where the heroine has to cheat or trick the hero in something because her livelihood, or the livelihood of those she cares, is in danger. Aside from the cases in which a definite and oftentimes heroic purpose is involved, heroines would probably be disliked (like if they try to seduce the hero just for fun, or for a bet, etc). Though they appear more unredeemable in the eyes of the heroes it seems. I haven’t yet read a book where the heroine is truly evil or is utterly spiteful towards the hero for no good reason, but then again, I try to stay away from books that contain nefarious, femme fatale heroines. (The Wife Trap by Tracy Anne Warren, for example, has had the heroine so slandered and brought to be such a horrible character in the first book of the trilogy that I can’t stomach the idea of her being the heroine of her own book.)

    Reply
  103. For romance heroines, wicked would likely mean elopement (in a historical setting), marrying a family nemesis, or in my own terms, cuckoldry, which unfortunately was not seen as truly wicked in historic times as too many people did it. I don’t think heroines are harder to redeem, because they tend to wring greater sympathy and often find themselves with lesser means and opportunities to support themselves. Most female readers would find some sympathy in a situation where the heroine has to cheat or trick the hero in something because her livelihood, or the livelihood of those she cares, is in danger. Aside from the cases in which a definite and oftentimes heroic purpose is involved, heroines would probably be disliked (like if they try to seduce the hero just for fun, or for a bet, etc). Though they appear more unredeemable in the eyes of the heroes it seems. I haven’t yet read a book where the heroine is truly evil or is utterly spiteful towards the hero for no good reason, but then again, I try to stay away from books that contain nefarious, femme fatale heroines. (The Wife Trap by Tracy Anne Warren, for example, has had the heroine so slandered and brought to be such a horrible character in the first book of the trilogy that I can’t stomach the idea of her being the heroine of her own book.)

    Reply
  104. For romance heroines, wicked would likely mean elopement (in a historical setting), marrying a family nemesis, or in my own terms, cuckoldry, which unfortunately was not seen as truly wicked in historic times as too many people did it. I don’t think heroines are harder to redeem, because they tend to wring greater sympathy and often find themselves with lesser means and opportunities to support themselves. Most female readers would find some sympathy in a situation where the heroine has to cheat or trick the hero in something because her livelihood, or the livelihood of those she cares, is in danger. Aside from the cases in which a definite and oftentimes heroic purpose is involved, heroines would probably be disliked (like if they try to seduce the hero just for fun, or for a bet, etc). Though they appear more unredeemable in the eyes of the heroes it seems. I haven’t yet read a book where the heroine is truly evil or is utterly spiteful towards the hero for no good reason, but then again, I try to stay away from books that contain nefarious, femme fatale heroines. (The Wife Trap by Tracy Anne Warren, for example, has had the heroine so slandered and brought to be such a horrible character in the first book of the trilogy that I can’t stomach the idea of her being the heroine of her own book.)

    Reply
  105. For romance heroines, wicked would likely mean elopement (in a historical setting), marrying a family nemesis, or in my own terms, cuckoldry, which unfortunately was not seen as truly wicked in historic times as too many people did it. I don’t think heroines are harder to redeem, because they tend to wring greater sympathy and often find themselves with lesser means and opportunities to support themselves. Most female readers would find some sympathy in a situation where the heroine has to cheat or trick the hero in something because her livelihood, or the livelihood of those she cares, is in danger. Aside from the cases in which a definite and oftentimes heroic purpose is involved, heroines would probably be disliked (like if they try to seduce the hero just for fun, or for a bet, etc). Though they appear more unredeemable in the eyes of the heroes it seems. I haven’t yet read a book where the heroine is truly evil or is utterly spiteful towards the hero for no good reason, but then again, I try to stay away from books that contain nefarious, femme fatale heroines. (The Wife Trap by Tracy Anne Warren, for example, has had the heroine so slandered and brought to be such a horrible character in the first book of the trilogy that I can’t stomach the idea of her being the heroine of her own book.)

    Reply
  106. And I forgot to mention that I’m a Christmas romance Novella whore. I love them all and have a special place on my keeper shelf that get re-read. Is that wicked? πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  107. And I forgot to mention that I’m a Christmas romance Novella whore. I love them all and have a special place on my keeper shelf that get re-read. Is that wicked? πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  108. And I forgot to mention that I’m a Christmas romance Novella whore. I love them all and have a special place on my keeper shelf that get re-read. Is that wicked? πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  109. And I forgot to mention that I’m a Christmas romance Novella whore. I love them all and have a special place on my keeper shelf that get re-read. Is that wicked? πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  110. And I forgot to mention that I’m a Christmas romance Novella whore. I love them all and have a special place on my keeper shelf that get re-read. Is that wicked? πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  111. I enjoy reading Christmas themed stories, it puts me in the mood for the festivities, and I like anthologies too so I am looking forward to this book. Wicked in romance novel terms doesn’t mean evil to me, it implies something naughty and a bit scandalous. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever read a romance with a truly horrible heroine – or hero- and I’m sure I wouldn’t enjoy that kind of book. I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.

    Reply
  112. I enjoy reading Christmas themed stories, it puts me in the mood for the festivities, and I like anthologies too so I am looking forward to this book. Wicked in romance novel terms doesn’t mean evil to me, it implies something naughty and a bit scandalous. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever read a romance with a truly horrible heroine – or hero- and I’m sure I wouldn’t enjoy that kind of book. I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.

    Reply
  113. I enjoy reading Christmas themed stories, it puts me in the mood for the festivities, and I like anthologies too so I am looking forward to this book. Wicked in romance novel terms doesn’t mean evil to me, it implies something naughty and a bit scandalous. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever read a romance with a truly horrible heroine – or hero- and I’m sure I wouldn’t enjoy that kind of book. I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.

    Reply
  114. I enjoy reading Christmas themed stories, it puts me in the mood for the festivities, and I like anthologies too so I am looking forward to this book. Wicked in romance novel terms doesn’t mean evil to me, it implies something naughty and a bit scandalous. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever read a romance with a truly horrible heroine – or hero- and I’m sure I wouldn’t enjoy that kind of book. I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.

    Reply
  115. I enjoy reading Christmas themed stories, it puts me in the mood for the festivities, and I like anthologies too so I am looking forward to this book. Wicked in romance novel terms doesn’t mean evil to me, it implies something naughty and a bit scandalous. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever read a romance with a truly horrible heroine – or hero- and I’m sure I wouldn’t enjoy that kind of book. I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.

    Reply
  116. Yes, heroines are harder to redeeom. Lottie Cummings was a pretty wicked character and I thoroughly disliked her in Nicola’s book, “Notorious”. I mean, she betrayed her best friend! Until I read “One Wicked Sin”, where she was the heroine, I would have said she was unredeemable, but I ended up loving the story. Terrific writing job!

    Reply
  117. Yes, heroines are harder to redeeom. Lottie Cummings was a pretty wicked character and I thoroughly disliked her in Nicola’s book, “Notorious”. I mean, she betrayed her best friend! Until I read “One Wicked Sin”, where she was the heroine, I would have said she was unredeemable, but I ended up loving the story. Terrific writing job!

    Reply
  118. Yes, heroines are harder to redeeom. Lottie Cummings was a pretty wicked character and I thoroughly disliked her in Nicola’s book, “Notorious”. I mean, she betrayed her best friend! Until I read “One Wicked Sin”, where she was the heroine, I would have said she was unredeemable, but I ended up loving the story. Terrific writing job!

    Reply
  119. Yes, heroines are harder to redeeom. Lottie Cummings was a pretty wicked character and I thoroughly disliked her in Nicola’s book, “Notorious”. I mean, she betrayed her best friend! Until I read “One Wicked Sin”, where she was the heroine, I would have said she was unredeemable, but I ended up loving the story. Terrific writing job!

    Reply
  120. Yes, heroines are harder to redeeom. Lottie Cummings was a pretty wicked character and I thoroughly disliked her in Nicola’s book, “Notorious”. I mean, she betrayed her best friend! Until I read “One Wicked Sin”, where she was the heroine, I would have said she was unredeemable, but I ended up loving the story. Terrific writing job!

    Reply
  121. Seems to me, I have some other Christmas themed things by the Wenches ;o) and I am SO looking forward to getting this one too.
    As far as wicked is concerned, I’ll read wicked-naughty, wicked-sexy, wicked-funny, wicked-smart, wicked-rich, wicked-poor or any number of other ‘wickeds,’ but a ‘truly wicked’ to me is/should be the villain, and I haven’t read a ‘truly wicked villain’ yet that was redeemable.
    So, that said, lighter wicked for me, please :o)

    Reply
  122. Seems to me, I have some other Christmas themed things by the Wenches ;o) and I am SO looking forward to getting this one too.
    As far as wicked is concerned, I’ll read wicked-naughty, wicked-sexy, wicked-funny, wicked-smart, wicked-rich, wicked-poor or any number of other ‘wickeds,’ but a ‘truly wicked’ to me is/should be the villain, and I haven’t read a ‘truly wicked villain’ yet that was redeemable.
    So, that said, lighter wicked for me, please :o)

    Reply
  123. Seems to me, I have some other Christmas themed things by the Wenches ;o) and I am SO looking forward to getting this one too.
    As far as wicked is concerned, I’ll read wicked-naughty, wicked-sexy, wicked-funny, wicked-smart, wicked-rich, wicked-poor or any number of other ‘wickeds,’ but a ‘truly wicked’ to me is/should be the villain, and I haven’t read a ‘truly wicked villain’ yet that was redeemable.
    So, that said, lighter wicked for me, please :o)

    Reply
  124. Seems to me, I have some other Christmas themed things by the Wenches ;o) and I am SO looking forward to getting this one too.
    As far as wicked is concerned, I’ll read wicked-naughty, wicked-sexy, wicked-funny, wicked-smart, wicked-rich, wicked-poor or any number of other ‘wickeds,’ but a ‘truly wicked’ to me is/should be the villain, and I haven’t read a ‘truly wicked villain’ yet that was redeemable.
    So, that said, lighter wicked for me, please :o)

    Reply
  125. Seems to me, I have some other Christmas themed things by the Wenches ;o) and I am SO looking forward to getting this one too.
    As far as wicked is concerned, I’ll read wicked-naughty, wicked-sexy, wicked-funny, wicked-smart, wicked-rich, wicked-poor or any number of other ‘wickeds,’ but a ‘truly wicked’ to me is/should be the villain, and I haven’t read a ‘truly wicked villain’ yet that was redeemable.
    So, that said, lighter wicked for me, please :o)

    Reply
  126. I have to admit to loving wicked (villainous) heroes, but definitely have reservations about heroines in the same circumstances. But it always bothers me that if a hero is the villain in a previous book, the other woman is almost never redeemed as well.
    To me, wicked would be if the character does something they know is wrong, or will be viewed by others as wrong, but does it anyway for their own gratification/gain, not because they were forced to it by circumstances.
    Definitely looking forward to this anthology!

    Reply
  127. I have to admit to loving wicked (villainous) heroes, but definitely have reservations about heroines in the same circumstances. But it always bothers me that if a hero is the villain in a previous book, the other woman is almost never redeemed as well.
    To me, wicked would be if the character does something they know is wrong, or will be viewed by others as wrong, but does it anyway for their own gratification/gain, not because they were forced to it by circumstances.
    Definitely looking forward to this anthology!

    Reply
  128. I have to admit to loving wicked (villainous) heroes, but definitely have reservations about heroines in the same circumstances. But it always bothers me that if a hero is the villain in a previous book, the other woman is almost never redeemed as well.
    To me, wicked would be if the character does something they know is wrong, or will be viewed by others as wrong, but does it anyway for their own gratification/gain, not because they were forced to it by circumstances.
    Definitely looking forward to this anthology!

    Reply
  129. I have to admit to loving wicked (villainous) heroes, but definitely have reservations about heroines in the same circumstances. But it always bothers me that if a hero is the villain in a previous book, the other woman is almost never redeemed as well.
    To me, wicked would be if the character does something they know is wrong, or will be viewed by others as wrong, but does it anyway for their own gratification/gain, not because they were forced to it by circumstances.
    Definitely looking forward to this anthology!

    Reply
  130. I have to admit to loving wicked (villainous) heroes, but definitely have reservations about heroines in the same circumstances. But it always bothers me that if a hero is the villain in a previous book, the other woman is almost never redeemed as well.
    To me, wicked would be if the character does something they know is wrong, or will be viewed by others as wrong, but does it anyway for their own gratification/gain, not because they were forced to it by circumstances.
    Definitely looking forward to this anthology!

    Reply
  131. I’m enjoying this discussion about wickedness immensely. I guess in this case, context is everything. I’ll be interested to know how you’ll view each of our wenches when you read them. There’s a wonderful variety in the stories, and in the next few posts, some of the Word Wenches are going to share a little about the background of their individual story.
    Maureen, yes, in romances heroes can get away with more. I wonder whether it’s true in life, as well. Do you think men get away with more than women? I suspect they do.
    Betty, thanks for that recommendation β€” I’ll see if I can chase up that story. I love Christmas romances, too.

    Reply
  132. I’m enjoying this discussion about wickedness immensely. I guess in this case, context is everything. I’ll be interested to know how you’ll view each of our wenches when you read them. There’s a wonderful variety in the stories, and in the next few posts, some of the Word Wenches are going to share a little about the background of their individual story.
    Maureen, yes, in romances heroes can get away with more. I wonder whether it’s true in life, as well. Do you think men get away with more than women? I suspect they do.
    Betty, thanks for that recommendation β€” I’ll see if I can chase up that story. I love Christmas romances, too.

    Reply
  133. I’m enjoying this discussion about wickedness immensely. I guess in this case, context is everything. I’ll be interested to know how you’ll view each of our wenches when you read them. There’s a wonderful variety in the stories, and in the next few posts, some of the Word Wenches are going to share a little about the background of their individual story.
    Maureen, yes, in romances heroes can get away with more. I wonder whether it’s true in life, as well. Do you think men get away with more than women? I suspect they do.
    Betty, thanks for that recommendation β€” I’ll see if I can chase up that story. I love Christmas romances, too.

    Reply
  134. I’m enjoying this discussion about wickedness immensely. I guess in this case, context is everything. I’ll be interested to know how you’ll view each of our wenches when you read them. There’s a wonderful variety in the stories, and in the next few posts, some of the Word Wenches are going to share a little about the background of their individual story.
    Maureen, yes, in romances heroes can get away with more. I wonder whether it’s true in life, as well. Do you think men get away with more than women? I suspect they do.
    Betty, thanks for that recommendation β€” I’ll see if I can chase up that story. I love Christmas romances, too.

    Reply
  135. I’m enjoying this discussion about wickedness immensely. I guess in this case, context is everything. I’ll be interested to know how you’ll view each of our wenches when you read them. There’s a wonderful variety in the stories, and in the next few posts, some of the Word Wenches are going to share a little about the background of their individual story.
    Maureen, yes, in romances heroes can get away with more. I wonder whether it’s true in life, as well. Do you think men get away with more than women? I suspect they do.
    Betty, thanks for that recommendation β€” I’ll see if I can chase up that story. I love Christmas romances, too.

    Reply
  136. Shannon, I *love* the phrase “wicked has sparkles on it” β€” so true. The lure of the forbidden, the dangerous edge. . .
    “I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.”
    That’s the problem in a nutshell β€” it’s got to be a believable happy ending, or it’s not a satisfying romance.

    Reply
  137. Shannon, I *love* the phrase “wicked has sparkles on it” β€” so true. The lure of the forbidden, the dangerous edge. . .
    “I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.”
    That’s the problem in a nutshell β€” it’s got to be a believable happy ending, or it’s not a satisfying romance.

    Reply
  138. Shannon, I *love* the phrase “wicked has sparkles on it” β€” so true. The lure of the forbidden, the dangerous edge. . .
    “I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.”
    That’s the problem in a nutshell β€” it’s got to be a believable happy ending, or it’s not a satisfying romance.

    Reply
  139. Shannon, I *love* the phrase “wicked has sparkles on it” β€” so true. The lure of the forbidden, the dangerous edge. . .
    “I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.”
    That’s the problem in a nutshell β€” it’s got to be a believable happy ending, or it’s not a satisfying romance.

    Reply
  140. Shannon, I *love* the phrase “wicked has sparkles on it” β€” so true. The lure of the forbidden, the dangerous edge. . .
    “I think the main problem that a truly wicked heroine poses in historical romance is the conundrum of how to provide a bells and whistles happy-ever-after that includes full social acceptance – regardless of how improbable such acceptance may be.”
    That’s the problem in a nutshell β€” it’s got to be a believable happy ending, or it’s not a satisfying romance.

    Reply
  141. Thanks Ella and Diane. Diane, I *always* plan for a big Christmas bake-a-thon, but most of the time Christmas comes upon me as a shock β€” what, here already?
    “wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.”
    Hmmm, sounds like my kind of hero.

    Reply
  142. Thanks Ella and Diane. Diane, I *always* plan for a big Christmas bake-a-thon, but most of the time Christmas comes upon me as a shock β€” what, here already?
    “wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.”
    Hmmm, sounds like my kind of hero.

    Reply
  143. Thanks Ella and Diane. Diane, I *always* plan for a big Christmas bake-a-thon, but most of the time Christmas comes upon me as a shock β€” what, here already?
    “wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.”
    Hmmm, sounds like my kind of hero.

    Reply
  144. Thanks Ella and Diane. Diane, I *always* plan for a big Christmas bake-a-thon, but most of the time Christmas comes upon me as a shock β€” what, here already?
    “wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.”
    Hmmm, sounds like my kind of hero.

    Reply
  145. Thanks Ella and Diane. Diane, I *always* plan for a big Christmas bake-a-thon, but most of the time Christmas comes upon me as a shock β€” what, here already?
    “wicked as a verb such as wickedly handsome’ or as a term to describe extreme skill in certain pleasurable arts is definitely ok with me.”
    Hmmm, sounds like my kind of hero.

    Reply
  146. Suzy, I haven’t read any books with this premise where the woman was the criminal β€” men yes. It’s a trope I’ve enjoyed several times in western historicals β€” I do miss western historicals.
    It wasn’t an English law, as far as I know. I think it was very much part of the wild west. But it’s an interesting premise.
    This discussion of “wickedness” has certainly started me thinking. It might even spark some more “wicked wench” stories. Who knows?

    Reply
  147. Suzy, I haven’t read any books with this premise where the woman was the criminal β€” men yes. It’s a trope I’ve enjoyed several times in western historicals β€” I do miss western historicals.
    It wasn’t an English law, as far as I know. I think it was very much part of the wild west. But it’s an interesting premise.
    This discussion of “wickedness” has certainly started me thinking. It might even spark some more “wicked wench” stories. Who knows?

    Reply
  148. Suzy, I haven’t read any books with this premise where the woman was the criminal β€” men yes. It’s a trope I’ve enjoyed several times in western historicals β€” I do miss western historicals.
    It wasn’t an English law, as far as I know. I think it was very much part of the wild west. But it’s an interesting premise.
    This discussion of “wickedness” has certainly started me thinking. It might even spark some more “wicked wench” stories. Who knows?

    Reply
  149. Suzy, I haven’t read any books with this premise where the woman was the criminal β€” men yes. It’s a trope I’ve enjoyed several times in western historicals β€” I do miss western historicals.
    It wasn’t an English law, as far as I know. I think it was very much part of the wild west. But it’s an interesting premise.
    This discussion of “wickedness” has certainly started me thinking. It might even spark some more “wicked wench” stories. Who knows?

    Reply
  150. Suzy, I haven’t read any books with this premise where the woman was the criminal β€” men yes. It’s a trope I’ve enjoyed several times in western historicals β€” I do miss western historicals.
    It wasn’t an English law, as far as I know. I think it was very much part of the wild west. But it’s an interesting premise.
    This discussion of “wickedness” has certainly started me thinking. It might even spark some more “wicked wench” stories. Who knows?

    Reply
  151. Artemisia, I think most of the heroines in this collection fit your description of wickedness β€” doing something that’s wrong for what seemed to them at the time a good reason.
    I wish my mother had left me a pile of Christmas anthologies β€” I love them β€” but she had a more literary bent.
    Chen Sod, you raise some very interesting points. One would think that women would be more sympathetic to a heroine in trouble, but I’ve seen some of the comments on reader boards, and they can be pretty tough on a female character who they don’t think has done the right thing. And I certainly think female readers find it hard to accept infidelity in a heroine.
    Thanks for joining in the conversation.

    Reply
  152. Artemisia, I think most of the heroines in this collection fit your description of wickedness β€” doing something that’s wrong for what seemed to them at the time a good reason.
    I wish my mother had left me a pile of Christmas anthologies β€” I love them β€” but she had a more literary bent.
    Chen Sod, you raise some very interesting points. One would think that women would be more sympathetic to a heroine in trouble, but I’ve seen some of the comments on reader boards, and they can be pretty tough on a female character who they don’t think has done the right thing. And I certainly think female readers find it hard to accept infidelity in a heroine.
    Thanks for joining in the conversation.

    Reply
  153. Artemisia, I think most of the heroines in this collection fit your description of wickedness β€” doing something that’s wrong for what seemed to them at the time a good reason.
    I wish my mother had left me a pile of Christmas anthologies β€” I love them β€” but she had a more literary bent.
    Chen Sod, you raise some very interesting points. One would think that women would be more sympathetic to a heroine in trouble, but I’ve seen some of the comments on reader boards, and they can be pretty tough on a female character who they don’t think has done the right thing. And I certainly think female readers find it hard to accept infidelity in a heroine.
    Thanks for joining in the conversation.

    Reply
  154. Artemisia, I think most of the heroines in this collection fit your description of wickedness β€” doing something that’s wrong for what seemed to them at the time a good reason.
    I wish my mother had left me a pile of Christmas anthologies β€” I love them β€” but she had a more literary bent.
    Chen Sod, you raise some very interesting points. One would think that women would be more sympathetic to a heroine in trouble, but I’ve seen some of the comments on reader boards, and they can be pretty tough on a female character who they don’t think has done the right thing. And I certainly think female readers find it hard to accept infidelity in a heroine.
    Thanks for joining in the conversation.

    Reply
  155. Artemisia, I think most of the heroines in this collection fit your description of wickedness β€” doing something that’s wrong for what seemed to them at the time a good reason.
    I wish my mother had left me a pile of Christmas anthologies β€” I love them β€” but she had a more literary bent.
    Chen Sod, you raise some very interesting points. One would think that women would be more sympathetic to a heroine in trouble, but I’ve seen some of the comments on reader boards, and they can be pretty tough on a female character who they don’t think has done the right thing. And I certainly think female readers find it hard to accept infidelity in a heroine.
    Thanks for joining in the conversation.

    Reply
  156. Phyllis, not wicked at all. I love the idea of a shelf of Christmas keeper novellas.
    Gail, as Kelly suggested in an earlier comment, it looks like shorter stories are coming into their own again, maybe because of the e-reading revolution.
    “I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.”
    Yes indeed. It’s why I can’t get into horror stories or the more gruesom crime ones.

    Reply
  157. Phyllis, not wicked at all. I love the idea of a shelf of Christmas keeper novellas.
    Gail, as Kelly suggested in an earlier comment, it looks like shorter stories are coming into their own again, maybe because of the e-reading revolution.
    “I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.”
    Yes indeed. It’s why I can’t get into horror stories or the more gruesom crime ones.

    Reply
  158. Phyllis, not wicked at all. I love the idea of a shelf of Christmas keeper novellas.
    Gail, as Kelly suggested in an earlier comment, it looks like shorter stories are coming into their own again, maybe because of the e-reading revolution.
    “I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.”
    Yes indeed. It’s why I can’t get into horror stories or the more gruesom crime ones.

    Reply
  159. Phyllis, not wicked at all. I love the idea of a shelf of Christmas keeper novellas.
    Gail, as Kelly suggested in an earlier comment, it looks like shorter stories are coming into their own again, maybe because of the e-reading revolution.
    “I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.”
    Yes indeed. It’s why I can’t get into horror stories or the more gruesom crime ones.

    Reply
  160. Phyllis, not wicked at all. I love the idea of a shelf of Christmas keeper novellas.
    Gail, as Kelly suggested in an earlier comment, it looks like shorter stories are coming into their own again, maybe because of the e-reading revolution.
    “I don’t demand perfection from characters – how boring that would be! – but my leisure time is too precious to want to spend it in the company of someone genuinely nasty.”
    Yes indeed. It’s why I can’t get into horror stories or the more gruesom crime ones.

    Reply
  161. Karin, I do love it when a clever author like Nicola can make you first thoroughly dislike a wicked character and then redeem her so well in the next book that you;re cheering for her β€”the character, I mean. Well, you can cheer for Nicola too. *g*.
    And you know what? I love stories like that, I guess because I do believe people can change and learn and grow.

    Reply
  162. Karin, I do love it when a clever author like Nicola can make you first thoroughly dislike a wicked character and then redeem her so well in the next book that you;re cheering for her β€”the character, I mean. Well, you can cheer for Nicola too. *g*.
    And you know what? I love stories like that, I guess because I do believe people can change and learn and grow.

    Reply
  163. Karin, I do love it when a clever author like Nicola can make you first thoroughly dislike a wicked character and then redeem her so well in the next book that you;re cheering for her β€”the character, I mean. Well, you can cheer for Nicola too. *g*.
    And you know what? I love stories like that, I guess because I do believe people can change and learn and grow.

    Reply
  164. Karin, I do love it when a clever author like Nicola can make you first thoroughly dislike a wicked character and then redeem her so well in the next book that you;re cheering for her β€”the character, I mean. Well, you can cheer for Nicola too. *g*.
    And you know what? I love stories like that, I guess because I do believe people can change and learn and grow.

    Reply
  165. Karin, I do love it when a clever author like Nicola can make you first thoroughly dislike a wicked character and then redeem her so well in the next book that you;re cheering for her β€”the character, I mean. Well, you can cheer for Nicola too. *g*.
    And you know what? I love stories like that, I guess because I do believe people can change and learn and grow.

    Reply
  166. Theo, you would indeed have other Christmas novellas from the wenches β€” though only one from me, before this one. I’m relatively new to novellas, though I’ve discovered I do enjoy writing them.
    I think you’re right β€” there’s a difference between the various kinds of wickedness you’ve listed, and absolute evil, which isn’t redeemable.
    Wicked-light β€” I like that.
    Margo, in the Balogh book I mentioned, where the hero is redeemed, there was no female in it who needed redemption. The heroine of the first book was a darling, and the heroine in the next book was wonderful, too.
    I hope you enjoy our MISCHIEF AND MISTLETOE

    Reply
  167. Theo, you would indeed have other Christmas novellas from the wenches β€” though only one from me, before this one. I’m relatively new to novellas, though I’ve discovered I do enjoy writing them.
    I think you’re right β€” there’s a difference between the various kinds of wickedness you’ve listed, and absolute evil, which isn’t redeemable.
    Wicked-light β€” I like that.
    Margo, in the Balogh book I mentioned, where the hero is redeemed, there was no female in it who needed redemption. The heroine of the first book was a darling, and the heroine in the next book was wonderful, too.
    I hope you enjoy our MISCHIEF AND MISTLETOE

    Reply
  168. Theo, you would indeed have other Christmas novellas from the wenches β€” though only one from me, before this one. I’m relatively new to novellas, though I’ve discovered I do enjoy writing them.
    I think you’re right β€” there’s a difference between the various kinds of wickedness you’ve listed, and absolute evil, which isn’t redeemable.
    Wicked-light β€” I like that.
    Margo, in the Balogh book I mentioned, where the hero is redeemed, there was no female in it who needed redemption. The heroine of the first book was a darling, and the heroine in the next book was wonderful, too.
    I hope you enjoy our MISCHIEF AND MISTLETOE

    Reply
  169. Theo, you would indeed have other Christmas novellas from the wenches β€” though only one from me, before this one. I’m relatively new to novellas, though I’ve discovered I do enjoy writing them.
    I think you’re right β€” there’s a difference between the various kinds of wickedness you’ve listed, and absolute evil, which isn’t redeemable.
    Wicked-light β€” I like that.
    Margo, in the Balogh book I mentioned, where the hero is redeemed, there was no female in it who needed redemption. The heroine of the first book was a darling, and the heroine in the next book was wonderful, too.
    I hope you enjoy our MISCHIEF AND MISTLETOE

    Reply
  170. Theo, you would indeed have other Christmas novellas from the wenches β€” though only one from me, before this one. I’m relatively new to novellas, though I’ve discovered I do enjoy writing them.
    I think you’re right β€” there’s a difference between the various kinds of wickedness you’ve listed, and absolute evil, which isn’t redeemable.
    Wicked-light β€” I like that.
    Margo, in the Balogh book I mentioned, where the hero is redeemed, there was no female in it who needed redemption. The heroine of the first book was a darling, and the heroine in the next book was wonderful, too.
    I hope you enjoy our MISCHIEF AND MISTLETOE

    Reply
  171. Oh! This book sounds so exciting!
    Hmm, I think as long as the story was told from the heroine’s point of view, a lot might be redeemable. Learning the character’s motivations always helps make them less of a villain.

    Reply
  172. Oh! This book sounds so exciting!
    Hmm, I think as long as the story was told from the heroine’s point of view, a lot might be redeemable. Learning the character’s motivations always helps make them less of a villain.

    Reply
  173. Oh! This book sounds so exciting!
    Hmm, I think as long as the story was told from the heroine’s point of view, a lot might be redeemable. Learning the character’s motivations always helps make them less of a villain.

    Reply
  174. Oh! This book sounds so exciting!
    Hmm, I think as long as the story was told from the heroine’s point of view, a lot might be redeemable. Learning the character’s motivations always helps make them less of a villain.

    Reply
  175. Oh! This book sounds so exciting!
    Hmm, I think as long as the story was told from the heroine’s point of view, a lot might be redeemable. Learning the character’s motivations always helps make them less of a villain.

    Reply
  176. I think a lot of people are capable of doing something bad out of desperation or to protect someone they love. I don’t like stories where they do nasty things for fun. Love Christmas stories!

    Reply
  177. I think a lot of people are capable of doing something bad out of desperation or to protect someone they love. I don’t like stories where they do nasty things for fun. Love Christmas stories!

    Reply
  178. I think a lot of people are capable of doing something bad out of desperation or to protect someone they love. I don’t like stories where they do nasty things for fun. Love Christmas stories!

    Reply
  179. I think a lot of people are capable of doing something bad out of desperation or to protect someone they love. I don’t like stories where they do nasty things for fun. Love Christmas stories!

    Reply
  180. I think a lot of people are capable of doing something bad out of desperation or to protect someone they love. I don’t like stories where they do nasty things for fun. Love Christmas stories!

    Reply
  181. The book that comes to mind with a truly wicked heroine isn’t really a romance. It was Phillipa Gregory’s Wideacre. I read the whole trilogy hoping for someone to be redeemed and it didn’t happen, sigh. To me true wickedness is rooted in selfishness. I can’t think of a selfish heroine whom I’d cheer for. (In my mind there is a difference between selfish greed and self preservation!) if the heroine is sufficiently thoughtful or has truly realized the error of her ways (like Sugar Beth Carreyby SEP) then I an enjoy reading her story and hope for the best for her.

    Reply
  182. The book that comes to mind with a truly wicked heroine isn’t really a romance. It was Phillipa Gregory’s Wideacre. I read the whole trilogy hoping for someone to be redeemed and it didn’t happen, sigh. To me true wickedness is rooted in selfishness. I can’t think of a selfish heroine whom I’d cheer for. (In my mind there is a difference between selfish greed and self preservation!) if the heroine is sufficiently thoughtful or has truly realized the error of her ways (like Sugar Beth Carreyby SEP) then I an enjoy reading her story and hope for the best for her.

    Reply
  183. The book that comes to mind with a truly wicked heroine isn’t really a romance. It was Phillipa Gregory’s Wideacre. I read the whole trilogy hoping for someone to be redeemed and it didn’t happen, sigh. To me true wickedness is rooted in selfishness. I can’t think of a selfish heroine whom I’d cheer for. (In my mind there is a difference between selfish greed and self preservation!) if the heroine is sufficiently thoughtful or has truly realized the error of her ways (like Sugar Beth Carreyby SEP) then I an enjoy reading her story and hope for the best for her.

    Reply
  184. The book that comes to mind with a truly wicked heroine isn’t really a romance. It was Phillipa Gregory’s Wideacre. I read the whole trilogy hoping for someone to be redeemed and it didn’t happen, sigh. To me true wickedness is rooted in selfishness. I can’t think of a selfish heroine whom I’d cheer for. (In my mind there is a difference between selfish greed and self preservation!) if the heroine is sufficiently thoughtful or has truly realized the error of her ways (like Sugar Beth Carreyby SEP) then I an enjoy reading her story and hope for the best for her.

    Reply
  185. The book that comes to mind with a truly wicked heroine isn’t really a romance. It was Phillipa Gregory’s Wideacre. I read the whole trilogy hoping for someone to be redeemed and it didn’t happen, sigh. To me true wickedness is rooted in selfishness. I can’t think of a selfish heroine whom I’d cheer for. (In my mind there is a difference between selfish greed and self preservation!) if the heroine is sufficiently thoughtful or has truly realized the error of her ways (like Sugar Beth Carreyby SEP) then I an enjoy reading her story and hope for the best for her.

    Reply
  186. I think most heroines can be redeemed, but it really depends on the offense. I’m trying to think of a wicked heroine, but none are readily coming to mind.

    Reply
  187. I think most heroines can be redeemed, but it really depends on the offense. I’m trying to think of a wicked heroine, but none are readily coming to mind.

    Reply
  188. I think most heroines can be redeemed, but it really depends on the offense. I’m trying to think of a wicked heroine, but none are readily coming to mind.

    Reply
  189. I think most heroines can be redeemed, but it really depends on the offense. I’m trying to think of a wicked heroine, but none are readily coming to mind.

    Reply
  190. I think most heroines can be redeemed, but it really depends on the offense. I’m trying to think of a wicked heroine, but none are readily coming to mind.

    Reply
  191. Deniz, I hope you enjoy the book. It’s very true, isn’t it that to understand all is often to forgive all. Thanks for dropping by.
    Peg, I think a lot of convicts were transported to New South Wales because of acts of desperation, rather than wickedness. I hope you enjoy our winter collection.

    Reply
  192. Deniz, I hope you enjoy the book. It’s very true, isn’t it that to understand all is often to forgive all. Thanks for dropping by.
    Peg, I think a lot of convicts were transported to New South Wales because of acts of desperation, rather than wickedness. I hope you enjoy our winter collection.

    Reply
  193. Deniz, I hope you enjoy the book. It’s very true, isn’t it that to understand all is often to forgive all. Thanks for dropping by.
    Peg, I think a lot of convicts were transported to New South Wales because of acts of desperation, rather than wickedness. I hope you enjoy our winter collection.

    Reply
  194. Deniz, I hope you enjoy the book. It’s very true, isn’t it that to understand all is often to forgive all. Thanks for dropping by.
    Peg, I think a lot of convicts were transported to New South Wales because of acts of desperation, rather than wickedness. I hope you enjoy our winter collection.

    Reply
  195. Deniz, I hope you enjoy the book. It’s very true, isn’t it that to understand all is often to forgive all. Thanks for dropping by.
    Peg, I think a lot of convicts were transported to New South Wales because of acts of desperation, rather than wickedness. I hope you enjoy our winter collection.

    Reply
  196. Jana, I haven’t read that particular Phillipa Gregory book, but as she’s writing about real people for the most part, I suppose it’s hard to redeem someone unless they redeemed themselves.
    Isn’t that what the old joke says? Q: How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?
    A: Only one, but the lightbulb has to want to change.
    Kim, I think in romance fiction, we all want the happy ending, so we don’t have truly wicked, evil downright rotten unredeemable heroes or heroines, just unhappy or desperate people doing desperate and sometimes wrong things.
    Pam Hartshorne’s book TIMES ECHO (discussed in the previous post), however has a truly creepy villain, but also has a lovely romance.

    Reply
  197. Jana, I haven’t read that particular Phillipa Gregory book, but as she’s writing about real people for the most part, I suppose it’s hard to redeem someone unless they redeemed themselves.
    Isn’t that what the old joke says? Q: How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?
    A: Only one, but the lightbulb has to want to change.
    Kim, I think in romance fiction, we all want the happy ending, so we don’t have truly wicked, evil downright rotten unredeemable heroes or heroines, just unhappy or desperate people doing desperate and sometimes wrong things.
    Pam Hartshorne’s book TIMES ECHO (discussed in the previous post), however has a truly creepy villain, but also has a lovely romance.

    Reply
  198. Jana, I haven’t read that particular Phillipa Gregory book, but as she’s writing about real people for the most part, I suppose it’s hard to redeem someone unless they redeemed themselves.
    Isn’t that what the old joke says? Q: How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?
    A: Only one, but the lightbulb has to want to change.
    Kim, I think in romance fiction, we all want the happy ending, so we don’t have truly wicked, evil downright rotten unredeemable heroes or heroines, just unhappy or desperate people doing desperate and sometimes wrong things.
    Pam Hartshorne’s book TIMES ECHO (discussed in the previous post), however has a truly creepy villain, but also has a lovely romance.

    Reply
  199. Jana, I haven’t read that particular Phillipa Gregory book, but as she’s writing about real people for the most part, I suppose it’s hard to redeem someone unless they redeemed themselves.
    Isn’t that what the old joke says? Q: How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?
    A: Only one, but the lightbulb has to want to change.
    Kim, I think in romance fiction, we all want the happy ending, so we don’t have truly wicked, evil downright rotten unredeemable heroes or heroines, just unhappy or desperate people doing desperate and sometimes wrong things.
    Pam Hartshorne’s book TIMES ECHO (discussed in the previous post), however has a truly creepy villain, but also has a lovely romance.

    Reply
  200. Jana, I haven’t read that particular Phillipa Gregory book, but as she’s writing about real people for the most part, I suppose it’s hard to redeem someone unless they redeemed themselves.
    Isn’t that what the old joke says? Q: How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?
    A: Only one, but the lightbulb has to want to change.
    Kim, I think in romance fiction, we all want the happy ending, so we don’t have truly wicked, evil downright rotten unredeemable heroes or heroines, just unhappy or desperate people doing desperate and sometimes wrong things.
    Pam Hartshorne’s book TIMES ECHO (discussed in the previous post), however has a truly creepy villain, but also has a lovely romance.

    Reply
  201. I think in the context of most historical romances I’ve read, “wicked” generally means more “deliciously naughty” rather than actually awful and repulsive. I don’t think I could enjoy a truly wicked heroine. But delicious and naughty? Bring it πŸ™‚
    @kaetrin67

    Reply
  202. I think in the context of most historical romances I’ve read, “wicked” generally means more “deliciously naughty” rather than actually awful and repulsive. I don’t think I could enjoy a truly wicked heroine. But delicious and naughty? Bring it πŸ™‚
    @kaetrin67

    Reply
  203. I think in the context of most historical romances I’ve read, “wicked” generally means more “deliciously naughty” rather than actually awful and repulsive. I don’t think I could enjoy a truly wicked heroine. But delicious and naughty? Bring it πŸ™‚
    @kaetrin67

    Reply
  204. I think in the context of most historical romances I’ve read, “wicked” generally means more “deliciously naughty” rather than actually awful and repulsive. I don’t think I could enjoy a truly wicked heroine. But delicious and naughty? Bring it πŸ™‚
    @kaetrin67

    Reply
  205. I think in the context of most historical romances I’ve read, “wicked” generally means more “deliciously naughty” rather than actually awful and repulsive. I don’t think I could enjoy a truly wicked heroine. But delicious and naughty? Bring it πŸ™‚
    @kaetrin67

    Reply
  206. I have often read books that were so great that I hoped that the author would write a sequel using some of the supporting characters. However some of these ladies were so wicked that I didn’t feel that they would make good heroines. Maybe a crafty author could redeem them.

    Reply
  207. I have often read books that were so great that I hoped that the author would write a sequel using some of the supporting characters. However some of these ladies were so wicked that I didn’t feel that they would make good heroines. Maybe a crafty author could redeem them.

    Reply
  208. I have often read books that were so great that I hoped that the author would write a sequel using some of the supporting characters. However some of these ladies were so wicked that I didn’t feel that they would make good heroines. Maybe a crafty author could redeem them.

    Reply
  209. I have often read books that were so great that I hoped that the author would write a sequel using some of the supporting characters. However some of these ladies were so wicked that I didn’t feel that they would make good heroines. Maybe a crafty author could redeem them.

    Reply
  210. I have often read books that were so great that I hoped that the author would write a sequel using some of the supporting characters. However some of these ladies were so wicked that I didn’t feel that they would make good heroines. Maybe a crafty author could redeem them.

    Reply

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