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Monday, February 15, 2016

Writing About: Valentine's Day + The Muse Party Blogfest



Valentine’s Day is always a sweet holiday for a romance, but it could also be a sinister holiday for a mystery/thriller. Here are a few things for you to consider for your fictional Valentine’s Day:

1. Couples

Couples love Valentine’s Day. Unless, of course, they are going through a divorce or aren’t happy in their relationship. This is the day for couples to profess their love for one another and spoil each other rotten with chocolate/treats, flowers, dinner, cards, and other gifts. For a romance, you can share the sweet and steamy details of your characters Valentine’s Day. Get your readers to feel all warm and fuzzy or hot and bothered.

But not all Valentine’s Days are good, though. An evil spouse could try to commit murder or maybe someone is unfaithful and has an affair on Valentine’s Day. You can get their route and create any storyline with V-Day.

Image from Pixabay

2. Single People

Single people tend to hate Valentine’s Day. We roll our eyes at all the mushy posts on Facebook and even try to hide until the day is over. We grumble, grit our teeth, and cringe. Write a romance story with a single character who hates everything V-Day and maybe bumps into someone who could be a future love interest. Or…for a mystery/thriller, a single could go around killing couples on Valentine’s Day. Now wouldn’t that make a good detective thriller?



Valentine’s Day traditions:

-       In the Philippines, they have mass wedding celebrations on Valentine’s Day. In 2013, 4,000 couples were married together.

-       In Guatemala they wear feathered masks and Mayan-inspired clothing to celebrations.

-       In South Africa they pin the name of their sweetheart on their sleeve all day.

-       In Estonia, Valentine’s day is known as “Friends Day” so single people can be included in on the festivities. Family and friends exchange gifts to show their love for each other.

-       In Denmark, they exchange “lover cards.”

-       Back in the day, in France, women would burn images of the men who wronged them in a bon fire. This is no longer practiced because this as well as the insults they’d shout at the opposite sex became too...crazy. Well, I’m sure some still do this in private. haha



QUESTIONS: Do you like V-Day? Have you written about Valentine’s Day?




Here are the questions:

1. Who did you bring to the party? Is he/she your Valentine or anti-Valentine?

I brought my muse, Ena. She is both my Valentine and anti-Valentine. Why? Because she loves Valentine’s Day but I hate it, so we both play the part to satisfy each other.

2. Which one of you is the more romantic person?

Ena. I feel awkward just hugging people. Even my loved ones. But Ena gushes romance. If she were to bleed, her blood would be glittery and swirling with red, pink, and purple. She is THE romantic.

3. What gift are you giving to your (anti) Valentine?

I’m giving Ena a day off from musing. And she’s promised me a great day of writing tomorrow. Yippee!

4. Are you guys wearing red or pink (or black...)?

I’m wearing a black T-shirt because it’s what I prefer, and skinny jeans. But don’t worry! I have on some pretty jewelry and red lipstick. I’m not a pink person, but Ena is a full-time girly-girl. When you have lavender hair and transparent wings, it’s hard not to be. She’s wearing a sparkling pink dress, reminiscent of the blue dress Ariel wore when she come out of the water and ran to her prince at the end of The Little Mermaid.

5. Did you bring any Valentine's Day treats?

Sure did! I brought chocolate cheesecake and Ena brought pink Rice Crispie treats...cut into hearts. See what I mean? She’s a hopeless romantic, which is good since I write romance.

6. Name a song for our Love Playlist or Anti-Love Playlist (or both)!

For the Anti-Love Playlist I have to go with Tears Don’t Fall by Bullet for My Valentine.
Ena chose the song for the Love Playlist...Take My Breath Away by Berlin. *groan*

7. Got a great anti/Valentine party game?

Ena suggests the game where you pass an apple with only your neck. I veto that game. How about we throw darts at pictures of the people who broke our hearts?

8. Feeling the love or just feeling nauseous? How will you have fun at the party?

Ena will be fluttering around, flirting with the cute, eligible guys and dancing from person to person to shower them with Valentine affection. Me? I’ll be a wallflower; smiling nervously at everyone and nibbling on one of Ena’s Rice Crispie treats.

9. Has your muse been a good Valentine?

My muse had been a great Valentine. She pulled me out of my corner and got me to dance the Macarana with her. And she seems to have made friends with everyone. Even Jordan.


*Jordan's Bonus Question: Did you bring me & Sarah a musiversary gift?

Duh! I brought a good basket for of things writers need: chocolate, pens, notebooks, flash drives, candles, coffee, and much more.

Ena brought a bottle of writing fairy dust. She says to sprinkle just a tiny bit on your keyboard to get the words flowing. Not more than a pinch, though, because it’s very potent. If you use more than recommended...well, she says it’s not a pretty sight.


89 comments:

  1. Thanks for coming to my party! I love all of your answers (I want to respond to everything but that would probably take all day!). Ena sounds like a good Valentine :)
    I think I'll have to hide the fairy dust because Jordan will probably throw the whole bottle at me as a joke. He already ate all the chocolate.

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    1. Thank you for inviting us to the party. ;) We both had a blast. We hope you have another...like for Halloween. :D

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  2. Hello great post and answers. I hope you had a fun Valentine's Day! Happy Monday, enjoy your new week!

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  3. Never written a Valentine's story but am in the middle of my first romance. Another good story is being dumped on V-Day only to end up spending your romantic evening on the run with an under cover cop. Or witnessing a crime and needing police protection at a safe house.

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    1. Both of those ideas remind me of 30 Seconds. :D

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  4. I feel awkward just hugging people, too. Ena sounds like an excellent Valentine. :)

    I love that writers basket...especially the inclusion of flash drives. :)

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    1. I knew I wasn't the only awkward hugger. ;)

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  5. My first book is all about the 14th and Valentines. Taken directly from my life - not the murders, just the elopement on Valentine's Day! :)

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    1. You eloped on Valentine's Day? Nice. ;)

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  6. I love writing and reading stories where there's a different take on a traditional holiday. Those Valentine's Day traditions were interesting!

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    1. So do I. I love learning about other cultures and their traditions. :)

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  7. 4000 couples married at once? That's a lot. My husband and I renewed our vows in Albuquerque with about 40 other couples and I though that was quite a crowd.

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    1. That is a lot. I couldn't imagine what it had been like for 4,000 couples to be there with some guests watching.

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  8. I like the contrast you listed e.g. evil spouse, lol. I love that Ena has wings and purple hair. She sounds like a lot of fun. Great post.
    Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

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  9. I'm not much of a fan of Valentine's Day, even though our day included an exchange of gifts and cards. It was nice, but I remember one Valentine's Day where I was on a job interview, so I had to eat alone in the hotel restaurant with all these couples out having a "special" evening. Talk about awkward!

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    1. Aw. That would be awkward. I hate all the hype and how it makes us feel if we're single or not with our partner that day.

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  10. Great interview. It sounds like you're having a lot of fun with Ena. Send me soe of her glitter. My daughter would love it. :D

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    1. I will of course send you a vial of Ena's special glitter. :D

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  11. Those are some interesting ideas for Valentine mysteries!

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    1. Right? It's the perfect mix of love and death. ;)

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  12. I'd take it the murder route if I wrote about Valentines day haha A day off from musing isn't a bad gift.

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  13. I wrote a memoir piece once about Valentine's day (in the sixth grade, the day Cathy and I got together). We were an item for the next year and a half. She was the first girl I kissed and sadly (I wrote about this too, somewhere) she was killed in a golf cart accident and I didn't find out about it until several years later (but hadn't seen her since we'd bumped into each other in college).

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    1. That is terrible! I'm sorry for your loss. At least you have those sweet memories of her.

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  14. Sounds like a fun exercise! Dancing the Macarena with fairy dust in your hair (and keyboard), after indulging in chocolate cheesecake sounds like Ena has lured you to the 'other' side! ;-)

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    1. She sure has lured me to the other side. She's sneaky like that. ;)

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  15. What a cute little meme with this muse party blogfest :) How interesting too with the different customs about Valentine's Day as you featured here. I have never written about Valentine's Day; I think if I did I would say that love should be emphasized every day of the year, not just singly on one day like this.

    betty

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    1. I agree, which is why I find Valentine's Day annoying and unnecessary. It's just an excuse these days for people to show off their gifts and yada-yada-yada.

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  16. Can I have some dust too? I promise I'll use it correctly. =D

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    1. I'll ask Ena...she may start charging for it. :P

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  17. I love Ena! She sounds so cute! I loved reading about the Valentine's Day traditions too - the one about pinning your lover's name to your sleeve is so cute. Glad you had fun at the party :)!

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    1. If I had a lover, I'd do that for Valentine's Day and wear it everywhere I went. :)

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  18. haha! I think I'm pretty neutral about Valentine's day. I'm single, but I also hate mushy stuff so if I had a boyfriend I'd prob be rolling my eyes if he did anything super nice. It's always been a day for family for me growing up. my parents always bought me little gifts or candy. :)

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    1. I mean I wouldn't mind some flowers but anything else is too much. My mom always did something special for us kids on Valentine's Day too. :)

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  19. I loved this, Chrys! Ena sounds wonderful if a little too sweet. I haven't written a story around Valentine's Day. It would be a good one though for the end of a relationship. There's nothing more painful then knowing it's over and Valentine's day lurking the next day. It would make a great back drop to a divorce story.

    Meantime, I would love some of Ena's pixie dust for my keyboard!

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    1. She is a little too sweet because I can be a little too dark. I need the balance to write romantic-suspense. ;)

      My sister had her hearing for her divorce on Friday then if course Valentine's Day was Sunday....

      Ena will stop by and sprinkle some. :)

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  20. That bonfire idea might be a tradition worth reviving.

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    1. Hahaha! I wouldn't mind participating in that bond fire. ;)

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  21. We don't overdo it for Valentine's Day but we went out to dinner. The day never bothered me when I was single because I never felt I needed a partner to be happy. It's just not a big deal either way to me.

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  22. My hubby bought me some chocolates, a beautiful card and ....a teddy bear:) I made him a card and would have it on my blog today if I could download the pictures but they won't download-grrrr. I would bring fairydust for sure and glitter! The glitter must be blue though since I am not a pink type of girl. One year, when I was single, I wrote out my feelings about someone I loved and then I burned it! It felt very freeing.

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    1. Aw. The teddy bear gift is sweet. I'm not a pink type of girl either. That would be freeing.

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  23. I was always nervous about Valentine's Day when I was a kid. I worried that I'd be the one who didn't get a card on her desk while Ann Huffman, the beautiful and most popular girl, would have a stack of them. Our teacher must have known about those feelings because every desk had a small stack of card. I think she wrote all of them. Bless Mrs. Stockton, my third grade heroine.

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    1. You had a wonderful third grade teacher. Yay for Mrs. Stockton!

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  24. Mmm, chocolate cheesecake and rice krispy treats...sounds good to me!
    I liked Valentine's Day best when I was a kid and everyone in the class exchanged valentines and candy with each other. Back then, it didn't matter if we were single, because we were too young to date anyway.

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    1. I liked that too. I always brought in cards for everyone. :)

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  25. Do I like Valentine's Day? Here's a clue, the biggest tradition I have on Valentine's Day is watching the film, 'The St. Valentine's Day Massacre'.

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  26. "So, Chrys," says Will Scarlet. "Low-key: Would it be weird to ask to see Ena's blood? Not trying to come off like a vampire or something (I'm not /that/ kind of immortal), but I mean, glittery pink 'n' purple blood? You don't see that everyday!"

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    1. She says cutting herself would be a little too morbid for a Valentine's Day party, but another time would be fine by her. LOL

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  27. Nick and I'll hang out with you, Chrys. ;-)

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  28. Great post! Glad your muse brings the romance when you need it.

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  29. I'd be up for throwing darts at pictures of people who broke my heart, but I think I'd run out of darts before I ran out of pictures.

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  30. I really, really hate Singles Awareness Day.

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    1. That's a different way of looking at it.

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  31. What a fun post. I like the idea of throwing darts at the pictures of people who broke my heart.

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    1. Ya! I challenge you to a dart throwing contest.

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  32. I could really use some of Ena's fairy dust! That would be great.

    Really fun post!

    Heather

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    1. We'll have to start mass producing her fairy dust. ;)

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  33. I'm not really keen on Valentine's Day, for much the same reason I'm not so enamoured of other fairly modern holidays which are more about greeting cards and a general feeling of having to celebrate because everyone else does. I've probably written about Valentine's Day, but it's not one of the holidays I dwell on. My favorite holidays are Halloween and Yom Kippur.

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    1. Valentine's Day has been around for a very long time, though. It's just changed to be all about cards and candy. Halloween is my favorite holiday too.

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  34. Chrys, M&Ms can help make any day better!

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  35. Stop right there, first you're too kind with your amazing and uplifting comment on my own blog. And two, the French girls know EXACTLY what they're doing!!! Happy late valentines kisses!!!

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    1. LOL! We need to be French. ;) Happy late Valentine's Day!

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  36. Huntress: That Ena sounds like a great deity. Of course Chrys created her.

    Me: God Chrys you are not making my job any easier.

    Huntress: You're mad that she's not into Berlin.

    Me: Take my breath away is a classic! I'm going to go sing the lyrics with Ena.

    Huntress: If you get bored with your mortals you can come to my city Ena. Your wings and magic will be truly appreciated and we don't eat magical beings. Who are not human.

    Me: Thanks for being part of the party Chrys. Both you and Ena are great. Sorry but Huntress now wants to play that apple game with Ena. No Ena those treats are...!

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    1. Ha! I love that. I told you I loved Huntress. I had an odd feeling her and Ena would get along.

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  37. I used to enjoy Valentine's Day, but it's not the same on your own. Great post.
    Yvonne.

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  38. Hi Chrys - fairy dust I need .. and I'd love to have some extra to sprinkle around and share with others. Fortunately Valentine Day can easily pass me by .. but I enjoy the odd things I get from friends or others .. flowers, chocs!, Prosecco .. and oh yes - you have cheese coming up in the next post ...

    It's gone for now - but the 29th offers us another day doesn't it? Cheers Hilary

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    1. Your friends are sweet. I get...nothing. Care to share some of those goodies? ;)

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  39. Valentine's Day doesn't mean the same as it did when I was younger. I'm not sure why. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  40. Great writing tips! Maybe, just maybe I can get Evelyn to stick around and use some of them. Ena is a delight! Her and Sassy Pants were flitting about. I was surprised they didn't run into one another *laughs*

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    1. That could've been a nasty collision. lol

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  41. Valentine's Day is open to all sorts of manipulation in stories. Murder, mayhem, angst...love? Well I just participated in two Valentine's blogfests which are always a lot of fun, helping to hone writing skills to a theme.

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    1. Absolutely! I had fun reading the entries for the WEP Valentine's theme.

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  42. I actually wrote a story for a Valentine’s Day anthology a couple years back where a woman allegedly murdered her husband, cut off his naughty bits, and disappeared on V-Day. So much for romance. :)

    VR Barkowski

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    1. Ha! I love that. It's twisted but I like twisted. ;) Who needs romance when there's murder. :p

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  43. Those are really cool traditions from around the world. Thanks for sharing them!

    I love Valentine's Day, but since I was at a horror con all weekend, it wasn't much of an event this year.

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    1. A horror Valentine's Day...sounds good to me. ;)

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  44. You know, not every couple likes Valentine's day. My husband and I never do anything for it. This year I got our kiddo something and bought some sweethearts for him and me to share, but otherwise ... same as any other weekend. Saw a movie, had sushi.

    I like those traditions! Especially the friend one haha

    Cool contribution to the party! Your muse sounds like a character, definitely. :)

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    1. If I had a husband, that would be us. lol But a movie and sushi is a great date for V-Day!

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