Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Guest Blogger Vivi Andrews - Tearing Up the Lists

Thanks to the Nine Naughty Novelists for having me here today!

Hi, my name is Vivi and I’m a list addict.

I confess. I’m one of those freakishly organized people who gets a little too excited when I check an item off one of my many To Do lists. Oh baby, the thrill of clicking strike-through on an Excel spreadsheet – it’s practically indecent. There’s probably a clinical name for people who lust after accomplishment and itemize their goals with little color coded sticky tabs – but I just call it incurable nerddom and wear my naughty librarian glasses with pride.

The heroine of my latest release, Serengeti Lightning (http://www.mybookstoreandmore.com/serengeti-lightning-p-6081.html), shares my list-mania, but beyond that our similarities pretty much break down. (In case there was any confusion, I am not, in fact, a shape-shifting lioness. But I am a Leo.)

Mara is all about goals and lists and plans. And like any true list-devotee, she has a checklist for her perfect mate. (Like you’ve never gotten a little tipsy on margaritas with your girlfriends and scribbled a list on a cocktail napkin declaring your need for a man with a bulging… intellect.) Pragmatic Mara’s dreamguy is faithful, sensible, and reliable. He’s the picture of stability and was probably an Eagle Scout who helped little old ladies across the street. Mr. Perfect-on-Paper.

Lust, emotion, heat – all the intangibles didn’t make it onto the list. Mara believes in making important life decisions with her head, not her heart.

Yeah, I’m guessing you can see where this one is going. Our hero, Michael, wouldn’t score very high on Mara’s mate test, but if anyone can get her out of her head and thinking with her, ahem, other places, it’s Michael. Hotter than sin? Oh yeah. The sensible choice? Not so much. Mara has discounted him as forever material since day one.

Don’t you just love it when a heroine is forced to realize just how wrong she can be?

I love my lists (oh baby, do I love my lists), but I also love tossing them aside for the sake of spontaneity. There are some things that lists and plans just can’t do. They can’t find you the love of your life or teach you how to listen to your heart when your head is screaming something else. Sometimes you have to tear them up and just enjoy the ride.

Have you ever made a Mr. (or Ms.) Perfect list? Is your real life significant other the kind of person you thought you would end up with?

Vivi Andrews lives in Alaska and writes paranormal romance for Samhain Publishing & Carina Press. For more about Vivi & her books please visit her website at www.viviandrews.com.


PG Forte said...

Oh, I love this post so much! Thanks so much for stopping by today, Vivi. But--not a shape-shifting lioness? Not? Say it isn't so!! :(

Ah, well, you're still in the right place, because all...er, most...okay, some of the Naughty Nine are listaholics too.

Sometimes I make lists just to cross things off. And how much does it bug me that Blogger refuses to accept "strikethrough" tags in comments? Grrrr.

Skylar Kade said...

Listaholic, right here. I keep index cards EVERYWHERE for on-the-go listmaking. And then I can organize my lists by swapping index card order!

I'm not OCD...really. Erm...

I have made an alcohol-induced Man Must Have list. And actually, it was vague enough that it worked out quite well!

Thanks for stopping by today, Vivi--loved this post!

Meg Benjamin said...

Welcome to the Naughty Nine, Vivi! Yeah, I'm as OCD as my fellow Niners. Not only do I make grocery lists, I arrange them according to where things occur in the store. Makes shopping at new places really difficult!

Vivi Andrews said...

Thanks so much for having me here today, ladies. And for making me feel so at home with your own OCD tendencies. List junkies unite! ;)

Juniper Bell said...

I make lists -- then forget to bring them with me. Is there a name for that problem? Sadly, my fiance has it too. We're like little lost lambs in the grocery store.

Great post, Vivi, your blogs are just as delightful as your books!

Eden Bradley said...

*waving to Vivi*
I am a long-time list-maker-and am totally jealous of your Excel lists! (I don't have Excel...hmm...maybe must get it...).
I've made my Mr. Perfect list-several times-and the list changes over the years. Always at the top are things like: Must be intelligent, kind, honest, have a good sense of humor. My last one also included:
Must not be threatened by my being an erotica author.
This is a big one for me! My ex had a hard time with it, and I wasn't going through that again.
I also wanted someone who liked my tattoos and maybe had some of his own, and who had some interest in art-I'm a huge art geek. A man who actually reads would be nice, too...
Lucky me-my boyfriend is a writer and cartoonist, has more tattoos than I do, is better-read than I am and knows art(which totally makes me swoon!). And he has all the other stuff on my list, too. Plus, he's cute. :) So, I say-make your lists! I think it's good to know what we want.


I'm shocked to find out you're not a shape-shifter. The list thing does not surprise me.

Vivi Andrews said...

Hi Eden! After dating some guys who were less than okay with my chosen career, that one jumped right to the top of my list too. Sounds like your fella's a keeper. :)

Juniper - Thank you! And if there isn't a word for that we should create one. Listolepsy, perhaps?

Vivi Andrews said...

Hi Kelly - If I were a shape-shifter, would I admit it on the internet?

Debra St. John said...

Hi Vivi,

I can't say I've ever made a list to find the perfect person, but I do adore being able to cross things off of my 'to-do' list. (Unfortunately, these days that doesn't happen too often...busy, busy, busy...)

Vivant said...

My mom is the world's most compulsive list maker. I have seen her include things like "go outside if the weather is nice." When I was a kid I was often assigned tasks from her lists, so I wasn't crazy about lists.

As a grownup, I've developed a friendlier relationship with lists, and tend to use them to organize my work. My life? Not so much. I don't think I've ever made a "perfect man" list, but I have used pro/con lists to help organize my thoughts for big decisions.

Hmm...I wonder if I make a perfect man list if that will jump-start the universe to send one my way?

Vivi Andrews said...

Good luck with your many To-Do Lists, Debra.

Vivant, knowing what you want can't hurt, right? I say go for it! :)

Kelly Jamieson said...

Ooh I'm another list maker. Like PG said, sometimes I make a list just so I can cross things off! And I organize my shopping list by the layout of the store, like Meg! (I thought I was the only one who did that!)

Serengeti Lightning sounds awesome Viv! Thanks for being here today!

Sherry said...

I don't make list because I would never go by them or I would lose them.


Autumn Jordon said...

Vivi, You know I'm a fan of your voice. Love it, and I do lists too. I have to admit, my DH has many of the qualities I had on my mate list-except rich. But money isn't everything.

Vivi Andrews said...

Thanks, Kelly, for having me!

Hi Sherry - I guess we can't all be compulsive and neurotic. :D

Autumn - Your husband sounds like he's rich in the ways that count. (Though you probably wouldn't turn down a little lottery windfall...) ;)