Is it possible to blush and go pale at the same time? If so, then that's what I did. I'm sure it was delightful looking to him because he smiled. The woman went back to her other conversation. I backed away and said, "Well, it was very nice to meet you, Dave. See you at the next meeting probably." He nodded and smiled and let me run away. Why did I run away? Because I knew by the way he was looking at me he hadn't come over just to talk about writing. He was interested in me. Me! And I wasn't sure I was ready for that.
Luckily for me he's a patient man. If I close my eyes, I can still see that first sweet smile. The same smile he gave me at the next meeting and the next meeting and the next. You might call it a half-smile. But I know him and he's not given to overly expressive smiles in public. That was his I've-found-something-good smile. The same smile he makes when he gets home before I do and as he's scrounging for ingredients to make dinner, finds the little slice of chocolate cake I left for him.
Often mimicking life, first meetings in books can be awkward. But readers are rarely as patient as my David. Books are designed to have conflict. Romances, especially, are designed to have conflict between the hero and heroine. Why? Because overcoming conflict is a good way to show a reader that a couple belongs together. In my romantic suspense Six Days to Midnight, heroine Janet Thompson isn't looking for a relationship. She's trying to complete her PhD in economics.
What you and I might consider deadly boring turns just plain deadly. Brandt Mahler is an economist, too. Hey, it takes one to know one! He's also a fashion plate and rich Euro-playboy. But he's a playboy with a mission to build healthy economies that help ordinary people. Janet could easily buy into that noble mission, except that she's not expecting to be thrust into either the limelight or the gun sights of terrorists. She feels like running away, just as I did.
When the bullets don't stop flying, Janet combats her shyness and let's her long-repressed personality shine through to help Brandt save the day. Brandt doesn't mind being bumped to page two of the tabloids, he just wants to keep Janet safe. In fact, he wants to keep her forever. I can just see the barest hint of a smile on Brandt's face...
Did you feel like running away when you first met your special someone?A bit about Kat:
As a young child, Kat once tried to confess the telling of her stories to her parish priest because she thought they fit the definition the nuns gave for 'telling a lie'. The wise priest asked her if her stories were told to hurt other people. "Oh, no!" she replied, "I only tell them to make people happy." The priest asked her if she had any other sins to confess and when she didn't, he advised her to continue telling her stories and then he assigned her a few prayers to say for those who could not hear them. Kat has been telling her 'lies' ever since and writing stories to entertain and enlighten. After a successful career as a software engineer, Kat decided she needed something different to do. She's now a tutor of adolescents with special needs. With one teenager in high school (home school) and another in college, every moment of her meager spare time is spent creating romances.