Friday, May 20, 2011

FINDING MY TARZAN (Or where do I get my Muses)

     Hello Gang! 

     I get asked a lot who are the muses for my stories. Are they anyone I know, someone I met on the street, blah, blah, blah. I get this question especially my family members. They always think they are in my stories. Truth be told—they aren’t that exciting. 
      I will tell you this. My heroes are a prototype of someone very close to me. My husband, Giuseppe. And this is so true for my latest book IT’S A JUNGLE OUT THERE, a story in the 1NightStand series. You see, like with most of my heroes in my books, I just look at my hubby and take the best parts of him and do a composite. For my latest book, I basically took a snapshot and Cut n’ Paste. LOL! 
            My character Maxwell Evans, is an actor. He’s introduced in my story, filming a scene for a Tarzan movie they are doing. He’s also thinking about the one nightstand he set up. He’s in full costume. Loincloth and jungle beads. Mmm. Nice. 
            Well, if you read the description of him (Buy the book, and you can get a blow by blow on the looks. LOL). he’s a carbon copy of my husband—just twelve years younger. But it’s how I remember meeting my Tarzan. It was over twenty-three years ago. 
            When I lived in Los Angles, I use to hang out at the Beverly Hills Wiltshire Hotel on Wednesdays. That’s the day they played free classical music. Anyone that knows me, knows I LOVE classical music and opera, especially since I sing opera. Different blog. Anyway, this particular Wednesday, I sat at my regular table. They served free finger food and wine at the time, too. I sat there listening to the music, I believe it was Mozart Night. 
            As I sat there the place was getting packed. Before I knew it, a man asked me if the seat at my table was taken. I looked up. WOW! Tall dark and handsome. Cliché, I know. But the long dark hair and banging body nearly knocked me out of my seat. 
            His accent was thick, and dreamy.  He started flirting with me, even had the nerve to tell me he could teach me Italian in one night. Oh brother! I told him, in Italian that I spoke it just fine, and that he needed another line. But that didn’t deter him. He told me that he was actually Sicilian and that he could teach me Sicilian in one night instead. Sicilian is actually a different language. 
            I laughed and told him no thanks, but he was persistent. I was dating someone at the time, so he was of no interest to me. He gave his number anyway. I took it and tucked in my purse, just so I wasn’t rude. 

            Well flash forward six months. My boyfriend moved to the East Coast, which I wasn’t ready to do. During that time, there was a thing called the Renaissance Fair that was in town. These are fun. You dress up in Old English clothes, and go have a blast, like the used to in Merry Ole’ England. I wanted to go, but none of my friends or family members were available at the time. But guess what? I found Giuseppe’s number, still in my bag. I called him and asked if he would like to go. He said sure. 
            We got our costumes and off we went. We remained friends—very good friends ever since. We didn’t started dating until six years ago and got married five years ago. Needless to say, we’re tight.     
            So as you can see, this man swept me off my feet. It took only 23 years, but hey, good things come to those who wait. LOL! 
            So long story short (I know, too late LOL). All of my heroes stem from this good-looking man that caught my eye over two decades ago, and will continue to do so. IT’S A JUNGLE OUT THERE, I took the liberty to describe him more fully. You see, he used to be an International Bodybuilder too. He still works out and is still in shape. In fact, he looks better now in is 40’s!

            I made a dedication in IT’S A JUNGLE OUT THERE. It says: To all the Janes looking for their Tarzan. 
            I found mine and never looked back.

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  1. What a wonderful post! Married to your own hero. My husband is a keeper, too, but I don't base my story heroes on him. Balding

    Best of luck with your sales.
    Starla Kaye

  2. Thanks so much Starla! And bald can be sexy. Look at Kojak!

  3. Hey mine is balding but this morning...well, never mind. Just let it be said that it doesn't lower the sexiness factor. Starla probably just wants us to look away and not leer at her hubs LOL. Anyway, I drooled over your Tarzan when I read the book, now I know he's real? Wow, Steph! No wonder you write such great heroes with such excellent inspiration at home.

  4. I have to agree with Kate on this one...I would sort of like to meet your hubster now, Stephanie. He sounds like a dreamboat and we can all use some inspiration from outside sources, even if we have plenty of hunk factor on the homefront!

  5. I love a good meet story! Sicilian is an entirely different language? Come on, that is a great line!

  6. Wow, what a perfect story, Stephanie. I had to work a bit to see the hero in my hubby at first. He was a diamond in the rough that needed a bit of polish in the way he dressed and he was almost painfully shy-only 19 when we met. Now, he is an incredibly sexy, funny, considerate, and confident man (Balding, too, but I like the feel of his smooth head beneath my fingers). I use bits of his personality in all my heroes. Glad you found your perfect Tarzan, Stephanie. Ahhh-ah-ah-ahhhhhhh.

  7. ROFL@Kate! Thanks Kate, hopefully I can drag the hubster to the Chicago RT. He's a sweetie, but he's super macho, and romance conventions just doesn't make him jump up and down. LOL!

  8. Hey Valerie! I tried a long time ago to talk him into posing for a romance cover. He just looked at me. So I said "Okay, fine, I'll just use parts of you in my stories. Of course he gave me the side-eye. LOL!

  9. I love this blog Steph I think it's my fav. LOL! Tell G hi. Wishing you very many sales my friend.


  10. Hey Maureen!

    Actual Scilian is a different language, In fact it's a differnt dialect. When I first meet hubster's parents, I spoke to them in standard Italian. They looked at me as though I was speaking Martian! I tried a little of the Sicilian that hubster taught me and we started a conversation. A slow conversation, but we tried.

    I stayed in Sicily for about a year with hubby (he was just a friend then) and I picked up on the language and the many variations. It's not as musical as Italian, It's a bit rougher. Also, words that end in "o" in Italian end in "u" in Sicilian.

    It's and Intersting language

  11. Hey Becca!

    They're all Diamonds in the rough. LOL! I think we can find that hero in all our husbands, that's why we married them. :)

  12. Telling G hi, LaVerne! LOL! Thanks for the well wishes. :)

  13. I think all of my male characters are somewhat based on my husband, just as there is a piece of me in each of my female characters. Not in looks though, but in personality. I cannot complain about my hubby though. ;)

    Best of luck with your new release Stephanie!

  14. wow this sounds interesting and i think its awesome you have a hubby you love so much you use him as a muse.

    im still a jane looking for my tarzan lol i liked that.

  15. Hi Jessica! And Thanks!

    I think I use a little (very little, LOL!) of myself in my stories too. I think as writers we all do, it can't be help.

  16. Hello Lindsey!

    Thanks so much. You'll find him, it will happen when you least expect it, like with me! :)