Indie-WednesdayAlong my reading journey, I’ve made a conscious decision to include self-published and small press works in my reading schedule.  But it is difficult to know where to start: So many new authors and books to examine to find the perfect fit for my tastes.  And to help others with this same problem, I’ve decided to turn my Indie Wednesday feature into a day where writers can introduce themselves and their work to everyone.

With this in mind, I’m turning over the blog to Catharine Glen, author of The Rose Crown, who has been nice enough to submit a guest post for everyone’s reading enjoyment.


Believing in Your Characters: Developing the Protagonists


As a reader, characters are the most important part of a story. If I can’t connect with them, believe in them, see them as real people, then it is difficult to fully engage in what I am reading. Sure, I love lots of world-building, awesome fight scenes, and unique magic systems, but those all come secondary to the characters. I need to care about what happens to them. I need to experience what they are experiencing right along with them.

I suppose that’s why, as a writer, I tend to focus on characters first. Most of my ideas begin with one or even a few characters (along with a general essence of the story). I develop early on the key aspects of their personality and their motivation: what they lack or what they seek. There’s just something about connecting with them early on that really drives the planning phase. Everything else grows from there.

When I first conceived ideas for The Rose Crown, I had this pair of characters kicking around in my head. As they formed and became more “solid” in my mind, I knew I had to tell their story. I couldn’t wait to start writing.

First, there’s Marian. She’s the only female soldier in the king’s army who, despite legitimately earning her position, must continually prove her worth to her less-than-accepting comrades. She’s a competent fighter, but she’s also an anomaly, which garners negativity and doubt among many of her peers. Not to be hindered by this, she strives to do her best and to do what’s right in the name of fulfilling her duty. She worked hard to get there, and by golly she’s going to do her job and do it well. She’s tough and goal-driven, but sometimes doubts herself and questions her worth. What is she without her sword?

The other half of the pair is Henryk, an ex-mercenary who’s had to fend for himself all of his life. A man of few words, he’s indifferent towards others and content with that fact. Being paid to use his fighting skills was an easy way to support himself. After all, he had to learn from a young age to kill or be killed. His life takes a hard turn when he learns about the notorious relic of legend – the Rose Crown – forcing him to face not only the sins of his past but the choices he must make for his future.

The Rose Crown ultimately brings the two together, each affected by its manipulative power, its inherent will to be restored.

Marian questions her ability to not only protect the royal family, but to trust that her thoughts and actions are still her own.

Still, the fear remained of what those horrible insistent feelings made her feel, think, and do. She shuddered, remembering that unbridled elation as she killed.

Did Henryk fear her now, too?

Henryk takes a leap of faith in helping Marian, struggling to overcome his reluctance to rely on anyone but himself.

He’d had time to learn and accept the existence of the Rose Crown. For Marian, it had all been thrust upon her in a short time. He suspected she needed him now just as much as he needed her.

I really enjoyed writing Marian and Henryk, especially for the mutual respect that grew between them. I cared about them, wanted them to find the one thing they both sought: acceptance. To me, they were real people, rising to face an extraordinary challenge that threatened far more than their individual lives. But most importantly, I believed in them. With Henryk’s knowledge of the crown and Marian’s determination, how could they not succeed?


the rose crownElite soldier Marian serves and protects the royal family—a responsibility she does not take lightly. But when she thwarts an assassination attempt on the king, she unwittingly becomes a prime suspect. Worse, she is left with a terrible, pulsing wound and vile, intrusive thoughts that are not her own. Now, the mysterious cult behind the attack has targeted her, and Marian soon learns of their goal to restore a devastating relic: the legendary Rose Crown.

Former mercenary Henryk has vowed to prevent the restoration of the Rose Crown at any cost. When he encounters Marian, he discovers the terrifying truth of her involvement—and the mortal danger they both face. Drawn together by the very thing that could destroy them, Henryk and Marian must forge a bond of trust—before it’s too late.

Can Marian battle against the ancient darkness consuming her soul, or will it utterly destroy them both?

Buy Links:

Amazon (both ebook and paperback available)

catharine glenAUTHOR INFO: Catharine Glen is an independent fantasy author residing in New England. As a child, she loved creating stories about distant lands filled with adventure and mystery. She was probably one of the only students who actually liked writing academic reports, and as an adult discovered she had a knack for technical writing. Returning to her first passion—fiction—is like reliving a part of her childhood.
Author Links:
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  1. Reblogged this on Archer's Aim and commented:
    Here’s an interesting indie fantasy book written by Catharine Glen!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Believing in Your Characters – Catharine Glen

  3. Thanks for introducing Catherine and her book. It sounds like a great read. My teetering TBR pile continues to grow….

    Liked by 1 person

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