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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Finding Love on Vacation: Left at the Altar Series by Jana Richards

In my novel “Her Best Man”, Sarah and Will find themselves sharing a cabin on a cruise ship. The forced closeness hastens their romance, and helps them fall in love forever. In real life, holiday romances happen with great frequency. How often have you heard this story; two people meet on vacation in a tropical paradise or a romantic city, and fall in love. People are more relaxed during a break, more ready to take a leap of faith. Sometimes this love affair is a moment in time, a brief interlude to be remembered fondly upon return to the real world. But sometimes it’s the beginning of a lasting relationship. How do you tell the difference? Is it even wise to let yourself fall for someone while on vacation?

It goes without saying to be careful when considering a liaison with someone you’ve never met before, especially in a foreign country. But if your love interest has passed the safety test, the consensus seems to be ‘go for it!’  The Singles Warehouse says that if you’re looking to fall in love on vacation, or you just want to meet someone new to have fun with, keep yourself open-minded and accessible. For example, if you’re a woman, don’t dance in the middle of a group of other women if you want a man to approach you. The advice to men is to “make yourself a source of enjoyment and pleasure. Participate, dance, laugh and make a name for yourself as someone who thrives in the joy of life”.

If you do make a connection, Keen.com offers a four point plan to discover if a vacation fling can turn into a real relationship.

1.      Make sure he’s single and available.  Keen.com says that “Plenty of men get good at being single during business trips’.  Look him up on the Internet, and make a speedy getaway if a search turns up a wife or girlfriend.

2.      Examine his values. Connect with him on social networks to discover how he presents himself to the world. You’ll also discover whether your values can co-exist. If he loves the night life and you want a family, this relationship probably isn’t going anywhere.

3.      Reconnect. You can keep in touch by phone and over the Internet, but real connection happens in person. Don’t quit your job, but meet for a weekend. Is there still a spark?

4.      Transition to the Long-Distance Relationship.  If you pass the first three steps, it’s time to move to the long-distance relationship. Keen.com says: “Alternate visits to your place with visits to his part of the world. Introduce him to your life first, then to your friends, then to your extended social network and finally to your family. Follow the same pattern with his world for best results. Enjoy your time together and make use of your time apart to understand what it was about the magic encounter you had on vacation that changed two lives forever.”

Sometimes a vacation fling doesn’t work out. What seems like magic on a tropical beach loses its shiny luster in the ‘real’ world. Kim Gamble met Alex on vacation in Greece. But when he followed her back to New York City, the relationship wasn’t the same: “We had a passionate reunion for a week, but soon — without alcohol and sunshine — the initial thrill began to fade. Once we were confined to my small apartment, navigating the thorns of daily life, our relationship became prematurely serious and painfully pedestrian.” Ms. Gamble writes in Marie Claire: “Oddly, it reminded me of the vacations my family used to take — how at the beach I'd pay to have my hair braided Bo Derek-style. It was a look I could pull off on the sand, but once back home, waiting for my school bus in the snowy Pittsburgh winter, the braids looked absurd. I was starting to suspect that bringing Alex home was the starry-eyed equivalent of wearing cornrows in January.”

Though Ms. Gamble’s affair didn’t work out in the end, I’m sure she didn’t regret the experience. What might be truly regretful is having a connection with someone while on vacation on not acting on it.

Whether it works in the long term or not, if you’re single and available, leave yourself open to falling in love. Even if your vacation fling doesn’t turn out to be your soul mate, you’ll always have the memories.

Have you ever fallen in love on vacation? Did that relationship last once you got home?

Her Best Man
Left at the Altar Series
Book One
Jana Richards

Genre: Humorous contemporary romance

Publisher: Uncial Press

ISBN: 978-1-60174-019-9

Number of pages: 166
Word Count: 55,000

Cover Artist: Judith B. Glad

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Book Description:

Sarah Stevens experiences a bride's worst nightmare; being dumped at the altar. When she goes on the Caribbean cruise meant to be her honeymoon in order to lick her wounds, she discovers her ex-fiancé has sent his brother, Will Marshall, the former best man, on the cruise as well. Everyone on board thinks they're newlyweds, and Sarah is too embarrassed to set them straight. How is she supposed to share a tiny cabin with a man she barely knows? Even worse, how is she supposed to pretend that she and Will are on their honeymoon? Sarah discovers the best man for her really is the best man.

There Goes the Groom
Left at the Altar Series
Book Two
Jana Richards

Genre: Humorous romantic comedy

Publisher: Uncial Press

ISBN: 978-1-60174-159-2

Number of pages: 157
Word Count: 52,500

Cover Artist: Judith B. Glad

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Book Description:

Eight years ago Tony left Olivia at the altar. He was sure she didn't really want to marry him. Now he's back, and they're forced to work together.

Coming home isn't easy for Tony, because his father wanted him to work at a trade instead of going off to college. Their relationship is still unsteady. Even before Tony's return, Olivia began questioning the depth of her love for her fiancé, a man she chose because he was safe and reliable. Yet the last thing she wants is a loveless, faithless marriage like the one her parents suffered through.

When Tony, who never stopped loving her, insists her fiancé is the wrong man for her, Olivia sets out to prove him wrong. But the sexual chemistry between them is still strong, and so are her feelings for him. Even so, how can she break her engagement, hurt her fiancé as she was once hurt? And how can she trust Tony not to abandon her as he did before?

If anyone does the jilting this time, she will.

Always a Bridesmaid
Left at the Altar series
Book Three
Jana Richards

Genre: Humorous contemporary romance

Publisher: Uncial Press


Number of pages: 201
Word Count: 61,000

Cover Artist: Judith B. Glad

Unical Press    ARe    Amazon   BN

Kobo     Untreed Reads     Itunes

Sony     Chapters

Book Description:

Dani Dipietro has always considered herself an ugly duckling in a family of swans. She's the bridesmaid her friends count on, but never the woman any man wants for his bride. So she plays the funny girl and guards her emotions, and her secrets, closely.

When Zach Morrison was dumped at his wedding, Dani was there to help him through the humiliation. A year later they meet again and once more Zach needs her help. To fend off the unwanted attentions of his former fiancé, he asks Dani to pretend to be his girlfriend. They play their roles a little too well, and make believe turns into reality. But their relationship comes crashing down around them when Zach's trust issues cause him to accuse Dani of cheating. Telling the truth means Dani will betray a friend, something she will never do. But keeping her secrets means she may be destined to remain a bridesmaid forever.

About the Author :

When Jana Richards read her first romance novel, she immediately knew two things: she had to commit the stories running through her head to paper, and they had to end with a happily ever after. She also knew she’d found what she was meant to do. Since then she’s never met a romance genre she didn’t like. She writes contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and historical romance set in World War Two, in lengths ranging from short story to full length novel. Just for fun, she throws in generous helpings of humor, and the occasional dash of the paranormal. Her paranormal romantic suspense “Seeing Things” was a 2008 EPPIE finalist.

In her life away from writing, Jana is an accountant/admin assistant, a mother to two grown daughters, and a wife to her husband Warren. She enjoys golf, yoga, movies, concerts, travel and reading, not necessarily in that order. She and her husband live in Winnipeg with their Pug/Terrier cross Lou and several unnamed goldfish. She loves to hear from readers and can be reached through her website at www.janarichards.com

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Jana Richards said...

Thanks so much for having me on your blog today!