Archive for July 26, 2013

Movie Recommendation: Guys & Dolls


Watching Guys and Dolls when I should be writing. But I’m a sucker for a fun musical, and this one has bonus ’40s costumes, classic musical numbers (Luck Be a Lady; Sue Me; Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat) and Marlon Brando (I’m also a sucker for a guy with a deep voice and wearing a slick suit).

It’s heavily non-PC (check out Adelaide’s song and dance while dressed as a cat, called “Pet Me Poppa“), but it has some classic romance conventions: the naive girl with a lot of inner strength (Jean Simmons) and the bad boy who is redeemed by love (Brando); humorous sidekicks who often steal the show (Vivian Blaine as Adelaide and Frank Sinatra as Nathan Detroit); seemingly insurmountable odds; and a happy ending. Plus, there are a lot of sly winks – this film knows it’s fun.

Arvide Abernathy: And I never saw until now how much in love with him you are.
Sarah Brown: I’ll get over it.
Arvide Abernathy: Why would anyone want to get over the one thing you hope for from the minute you’re born and remember until the day you die?
Sarah Brown: I’ll get over it.
Arvide Abernathy: Why? Because it’s the greatest reward that woman or man can have on this earth? To love and to be loved?

Sky Masterson: “It is my understanding that the Constitution of the United States allows everybody the free choice between cheesecake and strudel.”

So grab yourself some cheesecake (or strudel, or both!) and and enjoy this classic musical romance.

6/4/2016: edited to add: Fox is remaking this classic!

SFA-RWA Heart to Heart Contest

The San Francisco Area Chapter of Romance Writers of America is holding its annual Heart to Heart contest for unpublished writers. I entered this contest ages ago (I’m afraid to even do the math to figure out the year) with a manuscript titled “Direct to the Heart.” I hated the name, but it fit because it was about a female videographer filming a documentary about musicians in San Francisco. She: sweet and insecure. He: the classic bad boy.

It wasn’t a very good book.

But I loved certain aspects about it, including the country western band and my male lead, Georgia-born-and-bred, Luke Tyler. So I took the manuscript apart, ousted Naïve Natalie and replaced her with Venturous Victoria, moved things into the world of reality television, and everything started to fall into place.

This year’s Heart to Heart is asking for “that magical scene in which [the] hero and heroine meet for the first time.” Victoria barges in on Luke and his band mates backstage at a San Francisco tavern to present them with the offer of a lifetime. Maybe not magical, but a whole lot of fun!