#FiftyShades of Reality

Seems like everywhere I’ve gone to online for the past week has been papered with cheers and jeers for Fifty Shades of Grey. I haven’t read the book (too many of my writer friends have commented on how poorly written it is – I’m struggling to improve my writing – don’t need to read examples of poorly written stuff!) and have no intention of seeing the movie. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a prude. Whatever two consenting adults do is okay with me. But I do worry about the romanticism of what sounds like an abusive relationship. A BDSM contract? Stalking? Control?

Um, no thanks.

Instead, I love books and movies that tell the reality of relationships (but not too much reality). Everything isn’t all roses and champagne and limo rides and opera. That’s probably why I used to read LaVyrle Spencer books. Her heroines were real, lived in regular houses, and had a little meat on their bones. Her heros had baggage, sometimes did the wrong thing, but always treated the heroine with respect and kindness.

That’s what I strive to do in my writing: create a bit of romance without it being saccharine or fake. That said – it is nice to add a little money to the mix to make the reality of life a bit more fun! ;o)

But I digress. What is it about Fifty Shades that is so attractive? What is fantasy? What is reality?

  • The hero is a millionaire.
  • The hero is a hard-working man.
  • The heroine is a partner at a high-powered law firm.
  • The heroine is a paralegal at a small law office.
  • They live on a beautiful horse ranch, in a big, beautiful, rustic lodge.
  • They live in a modular home with three miniature horses in the pasture.http://lorilrobinett.com

Ah, yes. Pretty easy to figure out what is fantasy and what is reality, isn’t it? Perhaps Fifty Shades is intriguing because it is something we will never experience. But don’t confuse fantasy and reality. If you are in a relationship and the man stalks you, follows you, controls you, isolates you from friends and family. Run. Quickly.

For the record, all the reality above is MY life. And I love it. 🙂

Miniature Diamond J

When I was growing up, I always said I was going to live on a farm surrounded by animals. I wanted dogs, cats, horses, goats, cows . . . I wanted it all! I spent my summers armed with a recycled jar with nail holes in the lid, determined to catch lightning bugs, frogs, crickets and praying mantises (OK – that word has shown up twice today . . . I really need to look up the plural for that. Manti?). And I awoke each morning horrified to find the tiny dessicated carcasses of whatever creature I had caught the day before.

But I digress. Animals, whether large or small, were destined to be part of my life. When I met my husband, I was delighted to learn that he wanted to move to the country. And we did. Several years ago, we bought the 10 acres that we live on, then we bought a modular home, built a shop and built a barn. We’ve had cattle (and, oh, boy, are there some stories there. When you read Denim & Diamonds – which you will, right? – the scene where Andi helps deliver the calf is the story of our first calf), horses (tip: If someone offers to sell you a horse named “Satan’s Lady” – run.), dogs, cats, turtles, fish.

Cali, Cinnamon & Jasper

Cali, Cinnamon & Jasper

My favorite farm animals by far are our miniature horses. We bought Jasper when our kiddos were little, and gradually added to our little herd over the years. We’ve had babies and we’ve lost horses. Right now I’m sitting on the back deck watching Jasper, Cali and Cinnamon graze in the small pasture behind the barn lot. There is something so calming about the snuffling of horses, the small of fresh hay, and their soft nickers when you talk to them. Though I dreamed of having a horse ranch like the Diamond J, I’m quite happy with our little mini farm here in rural Missouri.

When you were a kid, what was your dream home?