Last year I found a great blog called Riding with the Top Down and I've been hanging out there ever since. It's a red convertible full of really cool writers including today's guest blogger. I just read my first book by her and I'm always excited to discover a new author, especially a woman who's in my same position -- the minority in a houseful of men. She's a California gal and married to a man she calls "Surfer Guy." So please give a big playground cowabunga to Christie Ridgway.
I’m surrounded by the reality of it, given that I live with my husband and two sons, no other female on the premises. I’m surrounded by the fiction of it too, as I write contemporary romances peopled with heroes that I consider all-guy as all-get-out. So how real are the words in our favorite romance novels? Has any man ever come close to saying to you, in those immortal tones of a Harlequin Presents hero, “You know you’ve been begging for my kiss, you darling little fool.”
Considering this topic, I wrote down what my men said to me this morning, beyond grunts and drowsy mumblings, that is:
“Don’t we have any breakfast meat?”
“Are there bugs in the cereal?”
“I didn’t knock it off the wall with a ball, I was tossing around a shoe.”
Obviously not the stuff of romance novels. But the hero of my next book, HOW TO KNIT A WILD BIKINI (out Tuesday, June 3!), is a writer/editor for a men’s magazine, so you’d think he might be more articulate, and perhaps slightly more, um, subtle, than those Presents men. I searched through the book for the most romantic thing he had to say, thinking he’d be a treasure chest full of knee-weakening bon mots. He turns out to be more “real guy” than I remembered, however. It’s what he does that appeals more to the heroine than what he says.
And that’s all man, isn’t it? They show us how they care, they don’t talk so much about it.
I did discover a lovely line or two, though. Heroine and private chef Nikki Carmichael has one eye that’s green and one eye that’s blue and they’re a source of fascination for the hero, Jay Buchanan. Early in the book he says to her: “Those amazing eyes of yours. When I look into them I don’t know whether I’m going to sink or fly.” Nikki’s response? She decides that murmured thought makes her want to swoon.
I hope you’ll be equally affected when you read the book. It’s the first in a new trilogy—all centered around a hip, surfside yarn shop in Southern California. Publisher’s Weekly says it “combines Malibu beachnik appeal with trendy knitting Zen” and that it’s a story in which “opposites attract, and steam rises in the kitchen and in the bedroom.”
But back to guy talk. What’s your favorite romantic line from a hero—either from fiction or reality? I’m giving away a copy of my new book and I’ll have the Playground Monitor select a winner from among those commenting. It’s great to be visiting here!