Shannon here: Historical Romance author, Melanie Dickerson share insight into her fictional characters’ romance. Comment on any post dated May 16 – 20 for a chance to win a copy of The Healer’s Apprentice. Deadline: May 21st, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Melanie:
Here are some questions I asked Rose just before her story in The Healer’s Apprentice began.
1. Are you open to your own romance?
I’m afraid romance is out of the question for me. You see, I have been chosen by the town healer, Frau Geruscha, to be her apprentice. One day I will become the healer, and in the meantime I must dedicate myself to the healing craft, learning how to relieve the suffering of the sick and injured, and learning which herbs are good for which ailments. I will live in Hagenheim Castle where those in need can come to me for help. I’ll have no time for a family of my own. [whispering] To tell you the truth, I am glad of it. As a poor woodcutter’s daughter, my prospects for marriage were not very good, and I no longer have to fend off all my mother’s repulsive suitors.
2. What’s the number one quality you’d require in a mate?
Well, as I always tell my friend, Hildy, who is quite the romantic and believes in true love, the most important quality in a husband is kindness and a love of God. If he is dedicated to doing what is right in God’s sight above all else, he will make a good husband.
3. What’s the number two quality you’d require in a mate?
Hmm, I haven’t thought that much about it, you understand, but I believe being physically strong and competent, yet able to appreciate finer things, like music, would be a very nice quality in a husband. Don’t you? Perhaps someone who loves music and plays an instrument.
4. Where is the best place you can think of to find a mate?
Why, one must find their wife or husband in one’s own town or village, mustn’t one? Where else might you find them?
5. Where is the worst place you can think of to find a mate?
Personally, my mother keeps trying to foist the most disgusting men off on me. It doesn’t matter to her if they are twice my age, have never taken a bath, or haven’t a tooth left in their head, my mother only cares if they have money. She used to drag them home to meet me! Sometimes I would sneak out the back before they could see me and stay away until they left. So I would say, my own home is the worst place!
6. What type of character traits are you attracted to?
Kindness, generosity, gentle chivalry … if I were to allow myself to be attracted to a man, those would be the characteristics that would attract me. Not that I allow myself, mind you.
7. What type of features are you attracted to?
Well, again, if I allowed myself … I have always preferred dark hair and blue eyes, broad shoulders and big hands. My friend Hildy prefers red-haired men.
8. What’s the one habit or lifestyle that would make you run the other way?
A man who shows himself cruel and indifferent, or immoral and hedonistic, would be sent on his way before he could engage my affections.
9. What would be a reason to end a potential romance for you?
If the man could not respect my love of God and my intention to serve him in all I do, I would tell him “Fare thee well” in no uncertain terms.
10. Where do you dream of getting married?
Why, the only place in Hagenheim to get married is the cathedral. Not that I will ever get married there.
11. Where do you dream of spending your honeymoon?
Honeymoon? Is this a new word? I have never heard this word before.
12. Where do you dream of celebrating your wedding anniversary?
Why, at home, of course. That is, if I were to ever have a wedding anniversary.
13. If you could order a carbon copy of an actor or actress with the perfect character traits and beliefs for your mate, who would it be?
Actor? You mean those men who perform morality plays in the market square?
14. What would be the best gift a potential mate could buy for you?
I don’t think it would be appropriate for a man to buy a gift for me before we were married, unless it were a betrothal gift. Perhaps a ring would be lovely, with gold filigree and a ruby, one that he could place on my finger during the wedding ceremony.
About the book: The Healer’s Apprentice is a double finalist in the 2010 National Readers Choice Awards in the Inspirational category and the Best First Book category and a Christy Award finalist in the Young Adult category.
In this historical romance loosely based on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale, a woodcutter’s daughter becomes the town healer’s apprentice. Rose’s job is to care for the sick and injured in Hagenheim Castle. But she gets sick at the sight of blood and is more suited to making up stories than sewing up wounds. She is determined to overcome her weakness and prove herself a competent healer, or she faces marrying a disgusting old merchant her mother has picked out for her.
Lord Hamlin, the future ruler of the region, is injured and Rose must overcome her squeamishness to save him. He is everything that is noble and good, but loving him is forbidden. He is already betrothed to a mysterious woman in hiding.
With two noble-born brothers vying for her affections, Rose learns that the people of Hagenheim are not always who they seem.
About Melanie: Melanie Dickerson is the author of The Healer’s Apprentice, a fairy tale retelling and medieval romance. She believes God is the creator of healthy romance and hopes to share that vision with her readers. She is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), as well as her local chapter of Romance Writers of America (RWA). A former teacher and missionary, she earned a degree in special education from The University of Alabama and now lives near Huntsville, Alabama, with her husband and two daughters. You may visit her on her website, www.melaniedickerson.com and write to her. She enjoys hearing from her readers.
Come back May 18 for an excerpt from The Healer’s Apprentice.