Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Love Is In the Air

Photo by Jim, the Photographer
by Shannon Fay from the July 16, 2012 issue

Tagline: A mix-up with some seats, an act of kindness...and Pamela found herself sitting beside a man who might just be her Mr. Right...

In a Nutshell: Pamela agrees to change seats on the airplane so a wife can sit with her husband. Divorced, she wistfully comments on how nice it would be to experience such a long marriage. Her new seat mate replies that she's mistaken about the older couple. They only got married two weeks ago. Pamela thinks she recognizes his voice, and sure enough he's a news reporter for her local radio station. They go out for coffee.

Observations: In a way, this was two romance stories in one. You have Pamela's story, which unfolds as we read "Love Is In the Air" (which is a wonderfully clever title) and then you also have the old woman's story as she recounts it to Pamela. (This actually occurred in last week's story, "Fireworks," too, but I only just noticed it.)

Airport/airplane stories have an inherent difficulty to overcome: the characters are obviously traveling some distance. The reader will wonder how will they develop a relationship. Usually, the man she sits next to would just happen to be from the city she lives in, a fact that I would have to begrudgingly accept. But Fay cleverly had them returning from wherever they had been. So it's actually likely that they both live in Phoenix. Smart!


Pat said...

Though I liked this story, but I had issues with the passengers changing seats because it is against FAA regulations to do that. This is why I'd never think to write a story like this. I'd be afraid it would be rejected.

Another show of WW world building. You gotta love it. As I said, I did like the story.

Anonymous said...

I liked the story, too, but agree with what Pat said. Still feel it was a really good read. I enjoyed it.

Kate, do you know if the wordcount is still set at 800 words? Also, when submitting to WW, how do you typically format your story? Font, etc. (Courier New is such an unappealing font..IMO) Also, do you know how to do an em-dash to avoid the dreaded double hyphen? (Hope this question makes sense)

Best wishes!

Pat said...

I use Times New Roman, 12 pt font for WW. Yes, romance is still 800 words. Mini mystery is 700 words.

I type my word, use the two hyphens, then type the first letter of the next word and hit space. That usually converts the two hyphens to an em-dash, then type the rest of the second half of the hyphenated word. There's probably an easier way but if there is, I don't know it.

Hope this helps you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Pat! Very sweet of you to help :)

Kate Willoughby said...

I use Courier New because I've heard it's easy to read and I imagine that the editors' eyes are tired from all the reading they have to do, so anything I can do to make it easier on them... :)

I use the same trick Pat described to make an m-dash.

Tamara said...

I type my long dash that way also. I switched from Times New Roman to Ariel, because it is just more attractive. I have stopped stapling my pages together, because I read somewhere that editors prefer they not be stapled.

Kate Willoughby said...

That's right. No staples. :)