Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Welcome Wednesday: Natalie Vawter's Shooting Stars and Summer's Fade

Everybody loves a summer romance.  Sun-kissed shoulders and cotton candy kisses and all that stuff.  I mean, I know it worked for Baby and Johnny in Dirty Dancing.  And loads of people went mental for that first summer in The Notebook--though I've got to say if I see one more video featuring their later kiss in the rain, I'll scream.  That beard was just too much.  Like a muskrat strapped to his chin. 

But back to the point.  Summer love.  Cynical as I can be, I still see there's something about it.  Something kind of magical.
I had my own little summer fling, though it didn't involve any of the typical tropes.  There wasn't an epic ferris-wheel ride or a spontaneous midnight swim.  And a walk on the beach wasn't even possible, unless I counted the muddy banks of one of Ohio's many mosquito-plagued creeks.  And I definitely didn't.

So, my summer romance wasn't typical. It featured Nine Inch Nails, an ancient, rusty Honda and a mutual love of Pixy Stix.  Not swoon-worthy, I know.  And probably even less swoon-worthy was the guy I shared this little fling with.    

He had a tragic haircut and probably weighed in at a hundred and seventeen pounds soaking wet.  But his eyes were amazing.  So, if maybe my memory hides him under a soft-focus layer that makes him look a little like Taylor Kitsch, I'm good with that. 
Anyway, for a few blissful weeks, we were inseparable. We drove with the windows down and held hands so tightly, I can practically still feel the press of his fingers between mine.  It was intense. 

Our first real kiss happened under a meteor shower.  Silver streaked through the sky and the world tilted beneath my feet.  No joke, it was the stuff of fairytales.

And it ended.

He picked up more hours at his summer job and I picked up a curfew when the school -year started.  Nobody cried rivers or screamed hateful words.  We just drifted apart.  And it was okay.  

It doesn't always happen like that.  Sometimes summer flings stretch into years.  Lifetimes, even.  But sometimes they're like the meteor shower, burning bright and wondrous and then fading away forever.

Personally, I'm cool with that.  Life is all about individual moments--from the magical to the mundane.  In my life and in my books, I try to cling to those experiences, savoring them not for what they might become, but instead for exactly what they already are.

Natalie Vawter won her first writing competition in the second grade with her short story about Barbara Frances Bizzlefishes (who wouldn't dare do the dishes.) She later misplaced her writing dreams in a maze of cubicles and general office drudgery. Natalie never forgot about Barbara or those dishes, and eventually she found her way back to storytelling, following the genre of her heart, teen fiction. When she's not writing or editing, you can probably find her wading through the towers of dog-eared paperbacks that have taken over her bedroom. Natalie lives in Ohio with her amazing husband and their three children, who inspire her every day to stick with her dreams.  Natalie is represented by the ever-amazing Cori Deyoe of 3 Seas Literary Agency and her books Canvas Crossers and Pandora's Clock were finalists in the 2012 RWA Golden Heart® Contest. 
Please visit her at or follow her on Twitter @natalievawter

So, what about all of you?  Do you believe that summer love is worth it, even if it ends?  Or would you rather spare yourself the pain of a hard goodbye? 


Lea Nolan said...

Thanks so much for visiting us, Natalie. You had me at "tragic haircut" but kissing under the meteor shower killed it! Holy cow that must have been romantic.

Melissa Landers said...

Aw, that was so sweet. You guys are making me seriously jealous with your tales of summer romance. No summer flings for me. :(

Natalie C. Markey said...

Great post Natalie! It was wonderful to meet you in Anaheim. I'll look forward to seeing those books on the shelf!

Natalie C. Markey

Tonya Kuper said...

Natalie, you captured the essence of summer love perfectly! Your post brought back buried memories of my own wondrous summer romance - the months right before my first year of college.
Thanks for a fun post!

Natalie D Richards said...

Lea, thanks so much! It was a little unbelievable to be there - like living out a rock ballad. ;)

Melissa, never say never! Maybe you'll have a super special summer with someone this month!

Natalie - thanks!

Tonya - thank you so much - it's easy to bring the memories back - they are pretty vivid. :)

Melissa Landers said...

Haha! Don't tell my husband!

Margaret said...

ahh...summer love, a time capsule that can't be touched by others as you create your own world. It doesn't last long enough to learn all the annoying things about the other. Probably why it's so perfect. (Not that I'm cynical). Great post!

Natalie D Richards said...

Aw, thanks, Margs. It is a special thing and it does usually fade before reality sets in. Which may be for the best.

Melissa...who knows, maybe it will be *with* your husband. ;-)

FB3 said...

Where is Lily Finn's debut novel? I've searched high and low and can't find it!

Melissa Landers said...

FB, some of us write for adults as well as teens, but we typically only promote our YA work on this blog. FWIW, Lily's debut hasn't been released yet. I'm excited to read it too.

Melissa Landers said...

Wait a minute...I think we're talking about different authors. lol! For our resident Lily, what's your pen name?

Leigh Anne said...

Sounds like a lovely Summer fling. Tragic haircut fluttering with the windows down...First kisses and meteor showers. *Twilighty sigh* ™

P.S. Taylor Kitsch? Pretty. :)

CareyCorp said...

Hi Natalie - Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your magical summer memory. I LOVE what you said about individual moments-from the magical to the mundane.

BTW- are you COFW?

Write Life said...

Mutual love of Pixy Stix!
I loved this,and thanks for including the pic of Taylor Kitsch!
I'm off to imagine meteor showers and Taylor! : )

Sheri Adkins said...

Hey Natalie! Loved the post--you crack me up. :) No summer romances for me, except the summer reads that kept me happy. I love the idea of it though.

Natalie D Richards said...

Aw, thanks all! Yes, Carey, I am COFW. And I'd be careful with Pixy Stix and dreams of Taylor Kitsch - could get crazy!! :-)

Romily Bernard said...

Hi Natalie! I loved the post!! You guys kissed under a meteor shower?! That's all kinds of awesome. Am JEALOUS!!

Cecily White said...

Aw, I love summer romances!!! You can fall twice as hard because you have half as long with them. Like Blade Runner but with less dismemberment!

P.S. Can I have Taylor Kitsch when you're done with him?

Kimberly said...

What a great post! The meteor shower is sure to make everyone jealous. :-)
It reminds me of a quote from The Notebook: “Summer romances begin for all kinds of reasons, but when all is said and done, they have one thing in common. They’re shooting stars, a spectacular moment of light in the heavens, fleeting glimpse of eternity, and in a flash they’re gone.”
I love summer flings. They are truly full of hope and excitement, and, you're right. They usually fizzle away instead of ending badly. Those are the memories that make you smile wistfully at the girl you once were. At least I do. :-)
Thanks for a great post.
It was wonderful meeting you in Anaheim!