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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Guest Blog: Lynn Crain: A Need for Luxury

Many times as a writer, authors are drawn into a need for wealth, fame and fast cars. So many of us want to have a rich hero or heroine because it is something we’re drawn to, something we desire.

While most of us will never have the wealth of billionaires, the one thing we do have is that need to have the many things we don’t.

The interesting thing is we would not be the first to have such desires. Throughout history those desires have been seen as the drive for exploration or, as some may see it, exploitation. Rome built its empire on the spoils of war and its need for silver. Silver and money are exactly the same word in at least fourteen different languages.

Silver was seen as power in 43 A.D. Rome and they conquered a nation, Britain, just to get at their silver cache. But just as silver was the money to spur Rome onward with its practicality and usability, silk was worth its weight in gold and desired by many of the citizenry. Rome even went so far as to send emissaries into a country not known for its hospitality just to try and steal the secrets of silk. However, what resulted was the more long standing arrangement we know as the Silk Road.

Many, if not most, of the world’s great advances were done because people wanted more and more luxuries for their daily lives. Things like gunpowder, which was developed to give an emperor a longer lifespan, or cotton, once considered a luxury by all people, or even pepper, which took a whole month’s wages for most people just to purchase one pound, are items we take for granted because we can purchase each and every one of them at a reasonable price.

Just like our ancestors, we authors are drawn into that need for luxury and write our books in such a manner. If you don’t believe me, take a look at the number of titles on Amazon with the word billionaire in the title. Add that to the words rich and millionaire and you’ll get what I mean. Authors have just as much desire to attain those luxurious items as the characters we write about, whether they are the girl next door who falls for the rich guy or a rich girl who falls for a self-made man, it’s all about getting from here to there.

Everyone has a desire to be successful, even those without the means to attain the wealth I’m alluding to here. Many times, wealth can be discovered in other ways, such as a good home-cooked meal, coming back after a military mission, or just seeing the one we love. Wealth isn’t always measured in material items but visceral ones as well.

But in the beginning, it was for the material ones because many of the needs were related to everyday living needs. One can’t be happy if they are always hungry, cold, don’t have a roof over their heads or a safe place to sleep at night. Wealth can and does mean some very common things for normal people. We as writers can’t discount those needs either.

The point for us as writers is human nature hasn’t changed that much over time. The things we wanted millennia ago are the same things most of us desire today. Think about what I’m saying here: We still want the same things as our ancestors. We all want a happy life. Sometimes that life is full of trials and tribulations and other times it’s filled with wealth and grandeur.

As writers, it is our job to get it right. To get the feelings and desires of our characters down so we don’t have a misstep be that step full of wealthy people or just the common day folk that many of us are. Whatever we choose, it must be first real to us because if not then we can never convey it as real to the readers.

One last luxury that needs to be mentioned. Reading. Reading was considered a luxury of the wealthy for a variety of reasons. One is that books cost so much and two, only wealthy kids learned how to read. Oh, how far have we come…we live in a world where reading is commonplace…and we are shocked when we find there are people who can’t read. Personally, it makes me want to teach them all.

In my mind, it is our job to entertain the readers with a great book about people, who may be wealthy or not, who may be like us or not but with whom we can empathize with on their journey to a happily-ever-after. If we can do that, readers will always be coming back for more.

BLURB: Worth The Wait
Release Date: February 18, 2015

She made a promise and took a gamble…

Jenny Adams wasn’t a popular girl in high school. No one understood the attraction star-running back Reese MacGyver had for her, least of all Jenny. When it looked as if things were getting hot and heavy before going away to college, Reese put on the brakes by soliciting a promise from her that they would get together, if neither were taken, at their tenth high school reunion. In a split-second decision and because of her love for him, Jenny puts it all in, vowing to make good on a teenage wish.

But ten years is a long time to wait. While Jenny has had relationships come and go, the promise always remains on her mind even when Reese becomes the man of every woman’s dream. He’s been very busy with his life and has become one of the richest men under thirty in decades. Jenny has done good too but not nearly that good and she wonders if he’ll be a man of his word as their tenth reunion looms.

And as the day draws every closer, she wonders if it will all be worth the wait…

Award winning author Lynn Crain has done it all in her life. From nursing to geology, her life experiences have added to her detail rich stories. She loves writing full time as she weaves contemporary, fantasy, futuristic and paranormal tales, tame to erotic, for various publishers. Her home is in the desert southwest though her latest adventure has taken her to Vienna, Austria with her husband of many years as he works his dream job.


Cara Marsi said...

Love your post. Thanks for the great info. Salt was another commodity, and the Roman soldiers were paid in salt. Therefore the term, "worth your weight in salt."

So true about all the romance heroes being billionaires and millionaires. We read to escape and dream.

Love the premise of your new book.

Paris said...

Thanks for the wonderful and informative post. I'm echoing Cara's comment but I think we do read to escape and dream. The new book looks like a fun read!

Rose Anderson said...

Loved your post, Lynn! Best luck on your newest and thanks for joining us today.

Sandy said...

Lynn, I enjoyed your informative history about wealth. Great post!

jean hart stewart said...

The Silk Road and its history has always fascinated me. Your interesting post reminded me of a lot of stuff I've forgotten. ( And some I didn't know!) Thanks for writing it.

Melissa Keir said...

I believe that's why the 50 Shades books are so popular. Who doesn't love a man with money to make all your dreams come true.

Your book looks great! I wish you all the best!

Lynn Crain said...

Thanks, Cara, for dropping by.

Yes, salt was another one that was considered as a luxury item. Thanks for mentioning that one.

Reading is my only escape many times and it's one of the big reasons I became a writer. I wanted to provide the same enjoyment to others.

Again, thanks for stopping by.

Lynn Crain said...

Thanks for dropping by, Paris.

The new book is a fun read and so fun to write.

Lynn Crain said...

Thanks, Rose, glad you liked the post. And I enjoyed being here.

Lynn Crain said...

Thanks for stopping by, Sandy. I love history when I can use the connections for writing. There are so many historical things where it's hard to connect it back to writing. Pretty easy with luxury items.

Again, thanks for stopping by.

Lynn Crain said...

Thanks, Jean, and yes, the Silk Road is one of those interesting things that actually connects to so many other things from our past.

Again, thanks, Jean, glad you could stop by.

Lynn Crain said...

Yes, Melissa, that is a very true statement. I think what I found so fascinating about the history shows I've been watching recently is the fact that we haven't changed much over time.

The things we wanted or needed in the past are pretty much the same. At first, they were all luxury items then they became the normal and new things became the luxury items.

Thanks for stopping by!

Marin McGinnis said...

Fascinating post, Lynn! I never really thought about how many books feature wealthy heroes (and the occasional heroine), but I do think you're right. And it gives me an idea for a story... :) The new book sounds great!

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