Thursday, May 26, 2011

Guest Post: Deborah Cloyed

Please join me in welcoming Deborah Cloyed, author of the new book, The Summer We Came to Life to Always With a Book! If you missed my review, you can read it here. Today Deborah talks about the modern world of dating.

An Ode to Modern Dating
By Deborah Cloyed

When my book The Summer We Came to Life opens, Samantha, age 29, has accepted a marriage proposal from a rich, successful, handsome French movie director.  Samantha and her best friends are still mourning the recent death of their ‘fourth musketeer,’ so the proposal becomes a metaphor for all the choices faced by the modern woman.  Should she really marry him and be absorbed into his world and life? Throughout a vacation in Honduras, her best friends and their parents’ love stories help Samantha evaluate her life and decide what’s next for her as an artist, woman, and human being.  Her friend Kendra faces an unexpected pregnancy, and has to decide whether to stay with the father, her boyfriend, or not.  For third friend Isabel, finding a man is the least of her problems. 

Welcome to the modern world of dating, where women happily stay single into their thirties.  They delay motherhood, focusing on their careers and personal fulfillment, or they proceed on their own terms through adoption or single motherhood.

When I wrote the book, I was fascinated by this phenomenon I’ve observed all too closely living in New York and Los Angeles.  Five of my best girlfriends and I started The West Clovernook Society, a club that combines resources to raise money for charities.  These women are gorgeous, successful, and headstrong.  Two out of six are married.  And those two are the only married women I know!  I socialize with dozens of thirty-something women that love to gossip about their dating travails, but in reality are in no hurry to give up the single life. 

And for the women who do find love, they’ve already experienced a decade of the Sex and the City phenomenon whereby their girlfriends function as soul mates, protectors, and support system. 

As for me, I live with my boyfriend, my childhood best friend and two writer-actor guys in a huge house in the Hollywood Hills.  Certainly, the rules have changed for what’s expected of a thirty-two year old woman.

In The Summer We Came to Life, we see the girls navigating love and loss, but we see the parents’ stories from the 60’s in 70’s during the Iran Revolution, US Civil Rights, and Panama.  After living in Honduras and Kenya, I went back to my parents’ home in Northern Virginia to write the book that was bouncing around in my head.  It was the first time I’d spoken to my parents about love and history as an adult.  I heard stories I had never heard before – about racism, politics, love, and revolution in the 60’s.  It got me thinking about all the ways dating, love, and marriage have changed.  And the ways it will always be the same.

Read The Summer We Came to Life, and write to me about your own love stories, no matter what your age, gender, or background.  From writing the book, I have learned that everyone has a fascinating, heartbreaking, hilarious story to tell.  And I’d love to hear it! 

About the author: Deborah Cloyed lives in Los Angeles, in Humphrey Bogart’s old room with a view. As a photographer, travel writer, or curious nomad, she’s previously resided in London, Barcelona, Thailand, Honduras, Kenya, and New York City. She’s traveled to twenty other countries besides, several as a contestant with her childhood best friend on CBS’ The Amazing Race. She runs a photography school for kids and is happily at work on her next book – a nonlinear love story set against the political violence in Kenya 2007-2008.

Thank you Deborah for contributing this great guest post and thank you Eric at Planned Television Arts for coordinating it.

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