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)