Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Dating Woes

I have a difficult time coming up with plausible dating scenarios for my hero and heroine. Most of them involve eating, and some people complain that there’s too much food in my books.

I think part of the reason is that my husband and I never really “dated.” We met in college. When I graduated, he still had a year to go, and most of our dating was long distance. We’d get together when he was home or if I was able to fly out to him. But dating? As in, him picking me up, taking me somewhere and bringing me home? Not so much.

For Book 3 of my Women of Valor series, I decided to take a completely different take on the dating scene. I had my hero and heroine meet while speed dating. Now, in addition to not really dating my husband, speed dating didn’t exist when I was single. So, as I do for most of my research, I went online. There I found websites that explained how the concept worked. The problem was, I could only find out so much about it without actually signing up to participate. And, while my husband is very supportive of my writing, and is willing to help me research certain things, I’m pretty confident he’d put his foot down if I asked him if I could start dating.

So I contacted a friend of a friend, who has participated in speed dating events, and she answered lots of my questions and entertained me with stories from her own experiences. Still, something was missing.

One evening, my husband, daughter and I went out to dinner with a friend who lives in New York City. He took us to an Irish pub and guess what? In the back, they were getting ready to host a speed-dating event. My daughter and I figured out ways to observe what was going on, and even to record the host discussing the rules. As a result, I was able to portray it well in my story (I think).


Aviva and Jason not only meet at their speed dating event, which both of them were coerced into participating, but they figure out a way to escape together from it. I’m pretty confident that by doing so, they’ve put themselves on the “banned for life” list, but if the story continues to shape up as it is, they won’t have to worry about dating again.

8 comments:

  1. Your dinner sounds like a serendipitous evening, Jen!

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    1. It really was. And everyone was into it!

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  2. I'm sure your scene will ring with authenticity, Jen. Witnessing something like that is the next best thing to actually experiencing it for yourself - since, quite reasonably, your husband would have a few objections!

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  3. Food does seem to be a common date. Many other things don't work in a book, though. I mean, if your hero and heroine go to a movie it's not like they can chat and get to know one another during it.

    I love the idea of your characters meeting on a speed date. (Probably a good idea you didn't do too much first-hand research yourself! Ah, the things authors do in the name of authenticity...)

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    1. It was pretty funny, Debra. And my daughter is quite sneaky at spying.

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  4. What an entertaining and amusing post, Jennifer. I don't think readers know what we have to go through in the name of writing.

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