Sinners & Saints:
A White Hat Ain't Gonna Get The Job Done
(Ladies Take The Stage)
When you think of a hero, what do you see in your mind’s eye?
Man with white cowboy hat on a white horse, coming across the horizon?
Or, that certain fella in blue with the big S on his chest?
Well, as the subtitle to this blog goes; a white hat ain’t gonna get the job done.
As a writer, it would be so easy to make every man a standard lead. Of course, he’d be Man of Steel or Man Of Green. His chiseled muscles and perfect persona would get the readers all dewy-eyed with admiration.
Similarly, creating a Snidely Whiplash character who snickers with a handle-bar moustache, while watching the locomotive moving towards the tied damsel on the tracks; can be simple.
Yet, as a writer, simple can be vanilla.
And, I’ve always been partial to mint chocolate chip. (Oh, yeah!!)
A hero might not have that courage and confidence, which is seen at first. In actuality, a barely visible streak of yellow peppers a trail down his back.
Oh, yes - I said it. The hero can be the coward.
"You cannot be a hero without being a coward." - George Bernard Shaw
For, without the world calling on him to save them, where would his place truly be?
I know what you're probably thinking as you read this - yet, just read a bit further.
For a moment take a step back and just think about this - If man is made of flesh and blood, what would make you think he does not bleed?
A fearless hero to me, is a myth. A robot, yes. A man, no.
Well, now, this is where my fun truly starts.
Oh, and by the way, the hero does not have to have a dangling participle between it's thighs to solidify the image of what courage is. A woman can be just as heroic as any man could be.
She just has a different set of skills to get the task at hand done.
Her arsenal doesn't have to have a howitzer, flame-thrower or anvil up a silk sleeves.
From the literary realm, there are a duo of female characters which fit the mold of which I am referring to. The Hunger Games’ Katniss Everdeen and Nancy Drew can handle themselves in any situation.
Of course, you can even look to Agatha Christie's refined sleuth, Miss Marple. Wit and wisdom didn't need an Uzi in that character's satchel.
It doesn’t take firepower to get the jump on the villains. But, for a hero that is a woman – just takes some craftiness.
Going into a sticky area, I’m going to be blunt and put it out in the open: Women are stronger than men!!
(whew, I said it and stand by it)
And, I don't just mean she's an intelligent woman. But, more important to me as a writer and as a reader, the heroine has to have grit and the scars from living. Scars seen and unseen are the most intriguing element to my characters, especially my female ones.
My heroines have to have enough wit and charm to catch the eye of the hero or male character. But, these ladies sure as hell better have the stamina to make it through the storms of scenarios and storylines that I have to unfold on the pages of my novels.
I mean, who wants a whiny, wimpy woman, who crumbles at the first rough wind of conflict. She's gotta be a fighter, even in pink stilettos and cotton candy lace lingerie.
"Part of the joy of dancing is conversation. Trouble is, some men can't talk and dance at the same time". - Ginger Rogers
High heels are a diversion that many may overlook or minimize for a woman to survive from point A to point B. In some cases, stilettos are the finest point of saving one's life above all else.
Writing a woman who becomes a hero is a more layered process. The character just doesn’t pick up a gun in one scene and suddenly becomes a sniper. A woman has a different power on another level, than a man.
Now, I’ve found placing a woman in danger would be such a false cliché for getting the attention of the reader.
But, if you can show a transformation of the female character living with the choices she makes and the results of them; then the reader will absorb the essence of the book.
It's more important to me as a writer and as a reader, that the heroine has to have grit and the scars from living.
Angela Chase is the main character in my novel, “Over My Head”. I think I could have given this heiress a fancy wardrobe and a nice car and left it at that.
She would be a polite hostess with a home on the hill and the wife of propriety in her social circle.
But, I’m not that lazy.
The metamorphosis from a wife who uncovers a secret of her husband, Lawrence, to thinking she’s in charge of events beyond her control, is what makes Angela a hero.
Angela Chase seems to have the world on a string. Yet, is it a silk strand of pearls or a tightrope of tragedy?
A single action Angela Chase takes in one segment of “Over My Head”, leads to unseen consequences.
OVER MY HEAD EXCERPT -
Snaking himself behind her, Nick Bell whispered into Angie Chase's ear, "Your husband is one unlucky son of a bitch", bringing Larry's name into the mix, "What makes you think he's going to pay back that amount", knowing that kind of money was far from that accountant's grasp, he focused on the heiress of the Carter Manufacturing fortune, "Without his wifey's help?"
"Help? You call this help?", seeing nothing positive in that description of what Bell was implying in hearing about a sexual encounter happening between them.
"Look at it, Angie", Bell smiled at her, "You are his ace in the hole", seeing just how determined this wife was to her husband's cause, while adding, "And, he doesn't even know it yet".
Turning doorknob without wishing to stay in that location with Bell any longer, Chase became resolute in her actions, "I'm leaving".
"Not yet", situated behind her, Nicholas held door closed with hand on it, "I have something to tell you".
"Let me out of here", Angela's hand twisted the knob, looking for exit from Nick's office in the Eight Ball.
"Listen to me, Angela", his voice fell to a tone of gentle coaxing, "If you walk out of that door", licking tongue against teeth in a loud flicker, "Then your husband will have to pay up", calmly laying out the consequences of leaving his office without thinking over an offer, "Sooner, rather than later", motioning hand away from that door in a quick movement, Nick wouldn't be keeping her any longer, if she wished to go right then.
Longing for this conversation to get back on the track of repaying a debt and not what Bell wished it to become in future moments, Angela uttered, "Nick, the money can be in your hands under 48 hours".
Nick turned his back to Angela and walked back to his desk without pressuring her, "Oh, don't I know it", resting himself on that desk edge, Bell played coy, "Angela, daddy's money won't satisfy me", taking in a deep whiff of light fragrance in that once stale office air, she was in his sights, "But, you can".
Slowly facing him, Angela tried to use a little charm of her own, "Nick, I'm begging you", attempting to reject this unpleasant request, "Don't do this".
"Do what, huh?", slyly snickering, Nick feigned ignorance over her objections, "I'm giving you a compromise", placing that reality of a spouse's debt into the open, "Your flesh for Larry's".
Lawrence Chase may have been imperfect. But, what Nicholas Bell was suggesting Angela Carter Chase do to pay off that debt, became an alien insurrection of internal conflicts, "I can't do this to my husband".
Looking at Angela, it was obvious that this young wife had no idea of how reckless her husband had actually been in gambling, "Do you honestly think Larry gives a damn about how this would affect your marriage", releasing a laugh from those lips to her, "He kept coming back for more and more", eyes of a churning sea started to squint at this brown haired heiress, while putting an offer of desire in focus, "Even when he knew he had the losing hands".
"He just had a bad streak, that's all", always trying to paper over the stench of Larry's mistakes, Angie stood up for the man who had her hand and heart.
Nick folded arms, as he sat on that desk edge, "How many times has dear Lawrence needed you to come to bail him out, huh?" understanding the benefits that Chase had in marrying Arthur Carter's little girl and all of the access to accounts that came with it.
Armor of protecting marital status and parental ties to her, Angela Carter Chase took umbrage, "That's none of your business".
"You know something", Nick nodded in agreement to Angie's utterance, "You're right. It is none of my business what you did in the past with your husband and his debts", upright and walking to face her, he rubbed thumb and index finger of right hand together, "But, this 250 is the here and now", slight irritation over this woman's reaction began taking a toll, as he proceeded, "And, I'm going to collect", blue eyes imagining how good it would be to be with her, he gazed Angela up and down.
"Not that way", flickers of shame caused Angie to turn away from this penetrating male's gaze, as she stood with back to him. Sense of unease began to encapsulate her.
Nicholas Bell could convey bright rainbows when the cause called for it. Then again, darkness remained an acquaintance of ascendancy's survival.
"Angela, I can assure you that this won't be a few bruises to his ego", hovering behind her, "For what he owes me", telling this wife about the probabilities of a husband's future health or lack thereof, Nicholas Bell went straight to the point, "Well, that hourglass may crack at any moment".
Angela's frame turned to look at this man who held her Lawrence's well being in his hands, "Before I say anything more", caution flowed from those glossed lips, "I need assurances from you, Nicholas".
"You needn't worry", relieved in her warming to what he wished to happen in future days, Nick gave a pleasurable smile to Angela, "The man with the moon face will remain in tact", letting Mrs. Chase know exactly what was expected of her in regards to being bedded by Bell, "As long as we understand what is required from us both".
Negotiation over a spouse's debt came down to a sole sentence from a wife's lips, as Angela replied to a salivating Nicholas Bell, "My answer is affirmative".
"You will receive all the information and particulars on this matter, within the next five days", Nick was filled with satisfaction, as he walked his voluptuous visitor to that closed door. Opening it, he beamed at her, "Take care of yourself, Angela".
As Chase's body made it's way out of that office, Angela feared gazing back at the man who'd just transformed a sunny afternoon into a hurricane of oncoming devastation, "As do you, Nicholas".
Gennaro Esposito was perched on a bar stool outside of Nick's office, as she passed by him. Angela could sense that this male of tanned hue knew exactly what was offered and accepted within Nicholas Bell's office.
Wife of Lawrence Chase exited the Eight Ball within brief seconds. Ironically, positioned behind that mythical ball of eight had been Larry's place for most of his life. Yet, the person who would reside in that orb's sights was now Angie. what Angela thought would be so simple, became a complication that would change her life forever....
- END OF OVER MY HEAD EXCERPT
“OVER MY HEAD” DESCRIPTION
Debt leads to desire. Desire leads to danger. Danger leads to a dormant disguise. Disguises dissolve and devotion's claw rips through society's satiny facade.
Lies and secrets are like molecules of fat. They always rise to the surface.
Lawrence Chase owed a debt. His wife, Angela, decides to take a gamble of her own, which leads to places that unseen consequences roam. What begins as a bargain of assisting a spouse with a problem, takes a woman down a rocky road of self reflection, desire and unraveling a secret from the past.
Man of varied lies and devilish alibis has snaked his way into the lives of this couple. Before either knows it, they are submerged in something beyond their control. For what was a frivolous flirtation, became a shower of a heart's hidden obsession onto a floor of doom's dance.
A wife. A husband. A lover.
Sex. Money. Power. Lies. Obsession. Murder.
No one gets out of this life without paying a price.
Devotion came in a single kiss.
If your interest is peaked with this snippet of my novel, “Over My Head”, then please purchase this work for 99 cents from the following:
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A.H. SCOTT COLLABORATIONS -
TONY WARD -
A.H. Scott is poet collaborator with internationally acclaimed photographer Tony Ward at TonyWardStudio. Come and take a peek for yourself, at the evocative photos from the talented lens of Tony Ward and titillating prose from the mind of A.H. Scott..
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LETTERS TO MY BULLY BOOK CONTRIBUTOR -
"I am proud to be a contributor to this anthology. "Letters To My Bully" sheds light on the soul crushing issue of bullying. It doesn't sugar coat the problem. It faces it head on. And, provides a pathway for all who are, or have been bullied in life. Glover Lane Press and Azaan Kamau have gathered together contributors from all walks of life to show that we all have constructed "Letters To My Bully" in some ways along our lives. This book is just the culmination of life's outpouring of emotion and reflection. Stand UP To Bullying! Stand UP For YOU..!" - A.H. Scott
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- My Philosophy -
"As an author, I enjoy letting my characters and plots that I've created get inside of the reader's heads. I make a promise to anyone that rolls the dice and catches a glimpse of my work that you will never be bored. Your eyes, mind and soul shall be thrilled. This is my bond to you, the reader. No simplicity ever from A.H. Scott. Always complexity is my main intent on anyone who reads my work." - A.H. Scott
"I want the reader to be affected in two ways - above the neck & below the belt". - A.H. Scott
"I don't write for children. I write for adults". - A.H. Scott
"I believe art should be as enigmatic as the artist who creates it." - A. H. Scott