Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Give us a kiss

Another area I had to address during revisions was "passion." As in, insert some (pardon my French) during a particular scene. Not something I find easy, especially when I imagine people I know having to read it.

I did write a bedroom scene earlier in the book, but the emphasis there was very much on humour. Now it was time to up the ante (why does everything sound like a euphemism?)

I'm not talking full on rumpy-pumpy with heaving, thrusting, panting and glimpses of hairy buttock. God no. My imagination's not THAT good.

It was essentially an important kissing scene, which needed a bit more oomph.

Less, "Ta-ra love, don't forget to put the bin bags out" and more .... oh, it's no good I can't even do it on here. Okay, let's say kissing with intent. You know what I mean.

Naturally I thought about doing some research - picking a snake-hipped, broad-shouldered, taut-muscled, man-totty neighbour to practise on. Except we don't have any.

I did try smouldering at the postman (quite hunky) while I signed for a parcel the other morning, but he looked quite scared and asked if I was contagious. (If my husband's reading this - you know I'm kidding, love.)

Anyway in the end I put on some smoochy music, thought about Sawyer from Lost
and had to be thrown in the garden and doused with cold water an hour later.

Job done.


Talking of fancies, here's a little joke that tickled mine this morning.

"What did Mary Poppins say after dinner?
SUPER cauliflower cheese, the lobster was atrocious."
Ho HO!

Please yourself ...

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My name is ...

One of the things I had to do while editing was make one of my male characters more appealing. Trouble was I'd been writing about him for so long I couldn't get my initial image of him out of my head.

It occurred to me it was his name that was the problem. Names are so evocative, tending to conjure a certain type of person, and the name I'd chosen isn't one normally seen in chick-lit.

Okay, he wasn't called Pogo or Woopsie (apologies to any Woopsies reading) but I had invented a type of character to go with the name. In case any of you are ever daft enough the read the book - IF it ever gets published - let's say I called him Maurice.

Leading men are rarely called Maurice in romantic comedies. If they are you know they're going to be losers in love, gay or somebody's granddad. I might as well have written in ginormous letters "BY THE WAY, SHE'S NOT GOING TO END UP WITH HIM!"

I was reminded of a couple of films I've seen - can't remember their names, I think one starred Sandra Bullock - where the leading lady started out happily married or engaged to a rather non-descript actor I didn't recognise (I watch a LOT of films) and I knew immediately he would wind up dead or dumped in a very short space of time, and I was right - she copped off with Antonio Banderas (or whoever) in the end.

A small detail, but one that gave away quite a lot and I think my character's name would have had the same effect.

Just changing him from Maurice to Hunter-Gatherer (I jest but you get my drift) shifted my perception straight away and I was able to 'write' him more appealingly - I hope. No more Brylcreem and ham suppers with mummy for my man - no sireee.

Not that he was having ham suppers with mummy - I'm not THAT obvious.


As an aside, it's quite hard getting away from the usual names for leading men - Matt, Nathan, Jack, Zac etc.

Maybe we should start a campaign to bring Cyril, Bertrand, Norman and Keith back into fashion.