It’s a bit late tonight for Friday’s Fearless Female, I know. I got home and totally crashed… But here they are… Whitney and Sierra!


A few years back, my son and I went to visit Sierra. She still lived in Colorado at the time, and, it was perpetual winter. After a long debate at Redbox, we decided we were going to watch “The Avengers.” Sierra was less than impressed, and certainly not excited about it. If I recall her words were, “I think I’ll go to bed.”

Kiddo and I, we smirked and let her have her opinion and popped in the DVD, and told her to “give it ten minutes.”

About the time Natalia Romanova, Black Widow comes on the screen tied up, playing the damsel in distress Sierra gets up from the couch. “Oh please, I’m not watching this.”

I smirked again and said, “Just wait. Two more minutes, then you can go to bed.”  With great and obvious reluctance, including some heavy sighs and watch-checking, Sierra agreed.

After the movie was over I asked her if it was all that awful. I think, she’s actually a Marvel fan, now. So, Sierra, what exactly changed your mind?


I don’t recall the story happening this way. At all. I fell in love with the Avengers the first time I saw Iron Man. I loved the backstory. Seeing Tony Stark, lying on the ground, dazed, broken, then looking around and focusing on a missile with “Stark Industries” on the side gave me the chills.

So I’m sure it was my idea to rent the Avengers movie. (I dislike a lot of things. Being wrong is one of them. So I will rewrite history when necessary.)

I’m not saying you’re wrong Sierra… I’m just saying you fell in love with Tony Stark when you made me bring Iron Man over AFTER watching “comic book characters” in the Avengers. 😉 Please, continue…


I’ve always had an aversion to “damsel in distress” type of storylines. Like many people, I had a rough upbringing. While parts of my childhood were sunshine, there were unspeakable rough patches. From many years of therapy followed by a divorce I never wanted, I learned to toughen up.

And it was important to me to instill a sense of resourcefulness in the women around me. I don’t believe that Prince Charming is necessarily coming to save us. And so, in my books, my heroines tend to be strong, clever, determined women.

They do become better people once they learn to love, as do my heroes. But you won’t generally find my heroines tied to the railroad track with a train bearing down on them, screaming helplessly while waiting for the hero to rescue the at the very last second.

So when a movie opens with a helpless-appearing female character, I start to twitch. I especially don’t want to waste my time when I could be snuggled under the comforter and dreaming up new storylines.

And then… And then… And then magic happens. Black Widow is no victim. She’s no helpless female just hoping her man shows up in the nick of time.

She is a heroine in her own right. A wicked, gorgeous, clever, kick ass heroine, capable of saving her own life and those around her, while dealing out her own form of justice.

Whitney and kiddo knew all along that I would fall in love with Black Widow and that it would lead to a scorching affair with Thor, Hawkeye, Captain America, and oh-me-oh-my, Iron Man. (Hulk? Not so much. He’s too much effort for me. If I have PMS and no chocolate, I can match his mood in an instant.)

Beyond Black Widow’s general kick-asseryness, I adore the humor that runs though the movies. That’s another thing all my books have to have…a chance to breathe through humor.

Long live brave, competent heroines. And to borrow from a famous phrase, may we be them, may we inspire them, may we raise them.


 Sierra Cartwright Website:


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