One of Hollywood’s hardest working women is about to discover there’s a lot more drama behind the camera than in front of it…
Faith “Freakin’” Sinclair probably shouldn’t have called her boss a perv…or grabbed his “privates.” But as creator of the hit dramedy Modern Women she’d had enough of his sexist insults. Now she’s untouchable in the industry—not in a good way. The only way to redeem herself is to convince Alex the wildly popular wildly demanding former star of her show to come back. But there’s one obstacle in her way—one very handsome broad-shouldered obstacle…
Professor Mason Mitchell is head of the theater department where Alex is studying “real” acting. The only way he’ll let Faith anywhere near Alex is if she agrees to co-teach a class. It’s an offer she can’t refuse—and as it turns out the professor just might end up teaching Faith that there’s more to life than work—and that real-life love scenes are way more fun than fake ones….
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/unscripted-jayne-denker/1114865242?ean=9781601831316
(Also available on iTunes)
What’s Your Ride?
Every writer (and reader) knows that attention to detail is important in a novel. Although too many details can make the story boring, but including the right amount is essential to building a believable world. When it comes to writing romances, you’d think that the most-attended-to details would have to do with fashion, careers, and maybe some pop culture thrown in for good measure.
And I did all that…although I’ve never been much into fashion, so I tend to be a little remiss on namedropping famous shoe and handbag designers. But then I found myself doing something unexpected: taking a very long time to determine what type of vehicle each character drives.
Unusual, yes, but being specific about characters’ cars really matters. Whether it’s a Porsche or a Ford, a Mini or a big honkin’ Dodge Ram pickup, the model says something about the character, just as much as what they wear or what type of home they live in. Same goes for the car’s condition. Is it clean and well maintained? Is it scraped and dented? Is it a total beater? And ditto for its vintage. A character short on funds would likely drive a dozen-year-old domestic car, while someone flush with cash will have at least one late-model vehicle, possibly more than one. And what color is it? Beige? The character is conservative. A custom color? The character likes to be unique.
If I had started writing my novels before my son was born, I don’t think I’d have paid that much attention to the details of my characters’ rides. But he became obsessed with cars around age 2 (no exaggeration) and I’ve had to scramble to keep up with his knowledge of the automotive industry. No surprise, then, that all this information I’ve been absorbing for the past eight years would creep into my writing.
Faith, the main character of my second novel, Unscripted, is a very independent, high-powered TV executive. I knew she’d drive herself everywhere; she isn’t in the upper echelons of one of the Big Three networks by any means, so she couldn’t afford a driver even if she wanted one. But what would she drive? She definitely wasn’t a Prius type (no time or patience to be environmentally conscious beyond separating her recycling), nor was she into Mini Coopers (she likes her space). Limos in general are out but, as I observed while tooling around L.A. doing my preliminary research for the novel, Porsche Cayennes (the company’s SUV) are very, very in. So that’s what she drives. With all the bells and whistles, of course.
On the other hand, Mason, her underpaid, community college professor love interest, drives what she describes as a “dusty Toyota.” I noticed there are absolutely tons of Toyotas in Southern California, and because Mason lives in very dry and arid Moreno Valley (and likely doesn’t think about driving through a car wash all the time), his would be rather unkempt. Faith calls him Dusty Toyota before she learns his name.
Faith’s mother, a legendary movie producer, drives a Bentley (of course) but hires a limo to take her from her plastic surgery appointment to her beach house in Malibu to recover. Faith’s freeloading stepbrother doesn’t have a car at all, and instead borrows hers all the time.
When I started writing my current work-in-progress, I asked my son, now 10, what the hero, Niall, a famous movie star known for his broad comedies, would drive. He milked me for details (good boy, making me be specific about a character) and, taking into account the character’s age (mid-thirties), star status (pretty huge), and income (sizeable), he gave me several options, all very impressive, like a Porsche 959, a Maserati Granturismo, and a Noble M600 (look it up—I had to). But in the end I went with a 1974 Corvette Stingray 427. You know—the cheesy, low-to-the-ground model, with the comically long nose? Yeah, that one. Why? Because it’s silly, just like him, and he could drive it ironically.
Hm. If I’d had the guts, I would have given Niall the Ferrari 308 from Magnum P.I. That would have been even more ironic. But because I’ve had to take my son to practically every car show and car museum on both coasts, I know Magnum’s Ferrari is at the Petersen Auto Museum in Los Angeles. Which we’ve been to. Twice.
At least I can use my newfound knowledge to provide unique detail in my novels. So thanks, kid.
About the Author
Jayne Denker is the author of three contemporary romantic comedies, By Design, Unscripted, and Down on Love, and is hard at work on a fourth. She lives in a small town in western New York, USA, with her husband, son, and one very sweet senior-citizen basement kitteh who loves nothing more than going outside, where she sits on the front walk and wonders why she begged to go outside. When Jayne’s not hard at work on another novel (or, rather, when she should be hard at work on another novel), she can usually be found frittering away stupid amounts of time online.
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This is a fun romantic comedy! I liked the characters, especially Faith. I really enjoyed the Hollywood setting. It’s a light weekend read.