I once wrote a blog post about what life would be like if we lived in a romance novel and though funny, it wasn’t exactly a viable option. Basically nothing would ever get done and there wouldn’t be anything good to read. Well on the flip side, my manuscripts aren’t exactly true-life experiences. I’ve never had sex with the office security guard on my desk, I don’t fight rogue shape-shifters in my spare time, there isn’t a millionaire I knew as a kid pining away for me as I type this…sigh. If I were to write non-fiction it would be hundreds of pages of ranting about customers that annoy me and how my kids won’t leave me alone when I’m trying to read. Yeah, exciting stuff. That’s why I’m a novelist rather than a journalist and also why I tend to read fiction more than non-fiction to relax.
However, both as a reader and a writer I like a splash of realism in my literature. My husband thinks it’s funny when words like “a vampire would never really say something like that” come out of my mouth. What can I say, I like dialogue and action that might actually occur between two people whether they’re human or not. So, though I write fantasies that I’ve never actually experienced, I feel secure in the assumption that someone, somewhere has actually done what I’m making my characters do. Okay, okay, maybe not the rogue shape-shifter one. But…you never know.
Of all of my stories, this is my favorite scene and one I could picture actually happening in my life:
From Educating Macey:
I bent my head slightly to the right as I watched the screen, trying to decide if the acrobatics were physically possible for the average person. Beside me, my twenty-five-year-old neighbor, Max, sipped his beer and watched in silence as gasps and moans filled the room from the television. I took a sip of my soda and wondered exactly what was going through his head. He didn’t seem the least bit bothered by my storming into his house and taking up residence on his sofa as he watched sex on his flat screen.
I’d been in the process of mowing my lawn and decided to see if he had anything cold to drink. Max always keeps the brand of soda I like in his fridge and I have the bad habit of going weeks without buying groceries. He answered the door after my first knock and didn’t say a thing as I brushed past him into the house. He wasn’t wearing a shirt and his jeans were unbuttoned, but I assumed he’d just rolled out of bed by the look of his spiky black hair. It was barely nine o’clock on a Saturday. I guess I didn’t really expect him to watch porn so early in the morning.