Friday, June 7, 2013

Matchmaking Neighbors

by Marie Savage from the June 10, 2013 issue

Tagline: If only Mrs. Nelson next door would take the hint: Katie didn't need any help meeting guys...or did she?

In A Nutshell: Katie's neighbor, Mrs. N, is a self-styled matchmaker. Katie expects her to try again, but is surprised when Mrs. N only asks Katie to let a plumber in while they're away. The plumber comes and through conversation, they realize that Mrs. N created a perfect storm.

Observations: As you may know, I have three workshops geared toward teaching people how to write and sell romance stories to Woman's World. In one of the "advanced" classes I talk about the matchmaking story.

Here's an excerpt from the workshop in which I describe how the straight matchmaker story differs from a blind date story.

1.  There may not be an actual date.

·      The hero and heroine may meet, but soon they realize—surprise!—they’ve been set up. But the magic happens anyway, and the date gets planned.
·      They may be at the matchmaker’s house for dinner or whatever. Sometimes the matchmaker is there to oversee everything. Sometimes they may contrive to be absent.
·      The matchmaker arranges for the hero and heroine to meet at an event, like the school carnival, the blood drive, the Annual Rubber Ducky Regatta, etc.
·      One of the matchees is a professional painter, plumber, piano teacher, etc. and the other matchee needs that service. What a coincidence!

2. The matchmaker may actually appear and/or play a large part in the story. There was one tale I remember told from the point of view of the matchmaker herself. That was a refreshing twist on the cliché.

3. And once in a while, the matchmaker is unaware they’re playing Cupid. They drop an offhand comment that gets the hero or heroine thinking romantically, and the rest is history.

This story by Savage is a combination of the #1 variations, solidly written, but not particularly memorable for me. I did laugh at this line, though.

Mrs. Nelson was at it again.

Photo by Spierzchala (cc)


Pat said...

I like this story. It was in the 'Cute' category for me. Thanks for pointing out the premise for me, Kate.

Kate Willoughby said...

The poll is working! At least it is for me... :)