One of the most powerful moments in a great love story is the moment when the heroine or hero has the courage to face the fear that has been holding them back from fully living and step into love.
This is why romances are stories of transformation. Those who would push romance off to the side and scoff do not understand the healing aspect of romance. Naysayers simply don’t get that reading a well-written romance bolsters a reader’s courage and takes them on a journey to wholeness.
Why is courage the key to love? Because in order to love fully, a character has to be willing to give up their carefully constructed persona, the self they have constructed to protect them from pain, to strip away their emotional armor and dare to become the person they would be if they were not driven by fear.
In a great romance the hero and heroine see beneath the guarded persona, or false self, and connect with the truth of who they really are. The trials and tribulations that stand in their way are the path by which they gain the tools and insights and motivation to choose to love, no matter how scary.
Stepping into the truth of who we would be if our fears did not hold us back is scary. For most of us, our outer persona has been carefully crafted to keep us from facing pain and wounds from our past. We step forward, feel pain and then retreat, and it is only the call of the other that pulls us toward wholeness, the power of desire, the power of love.
This journey to wholeness is the heroine/hero’s journey. Joseph Campbell writes about the journey to wholeness in the Power of Myth. He says that we are fascinated, captivated, by story because story helps us find our way in life.
Ask yourself or your characters: What is the thing that frightens me and holds me back, the thing that keeps me from living life as I dream it, the thing that is so scary I would rather not reach for my goal than face it? Facing a wound from the past is perhaps the most frightening thing that one can do. But having the courage to face our fears and drop our defenses can lead us to the life we were meant to live; to the person we were meant to be.
Pamela Aares is the award-winning author of Love Bats Last, book #1 in her new contemporary series, The Heart of the Game, a sensual and action packed series about intriguing, powerful alpha males and the exciting and strong women who love them. Her historical debut, Jane Austen and the Archangel, explores the power of love to overcome fear.
Before becoming a romance author, Pamela produced and wrote award winning films and radio shows. After producing The Earth’s Imagination, she knew without a doubt that romance lives at the heart of the universe and powers the greatest stories of all.
Pamela holds a Master’s degree from Harvard and lives in the wine country of California with her husband and two curious cats.
You can visit Pamela on the web at www.PamelaAares.com –she’d love to hear from you!