It’s Valentine’s Day, Who Are You Kissing?

Happy Valentine’s Day to all!  Here’s the Author’s Note I wrote for the reissue of You Have to Kiss a Lot of Frogs.  I think this is a great approach to life, not just love.  We always want to be open and available to new people and experiences.  Enjoy the day and Keep Kissing!

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I couldn’t have been more delighted when I learned that MIRA was to reissue You Have to Kiss a Lot of Frogs.  The frogs have always been close to my heart as the book was inspired by events in my life.  A storyteller, I always enjoyed relaying the tales and travails of a quirky date.  With each retelling the story would take another spin, until it took on a life of its own.

Since I was working as an actress, people encouraged me to perform the stories, or at very least write some of them down.  Not memoir, I chose to narrate through the eyes of an alter-ego protagonist, actress Karrie Kline.  The stories became You Have to Kiss a Lot of Frogs, my first novel.  And with true poetic justice, Karrie, in turn, performed them in her first solo show, Frogaphobia in the subsequent Looking for Mr. Goodfrog.

One of the most significant things about Frogs is that the men Karrie meets come into her life simply through the course of day-to-day living.  If all the world’s a dating pond, the frogs are everywhere.  In the bookstore, a party, the park.  On the subway, a bus, a club or a cab.  There is no online dating.  The search engine is Karrie, and the optimization is her availability to the moment.  Matching keywords are eyes that smile; and they ignite chemistry without asking five hundred questions.  No perusing profiles, it is not a numbers game.  It is not the same as looking for a job, and it is not efficient.  It is random.  And romantic.

But can this route pave the way to true love?  Can a frog turn into a prince?  And if not, was it even worth the kiss?  You are about to find out.

But I what I can tell you is that these frogs, these dates, are just men, all different men.  And for the right woman, each one is a prince.  In the song of love we all hear a different melody, each of us beating to a slightly different drummer.  Karrie’s rhythms, closer to mine, I know my best relationships are with those men I meet naturally.  That serendipity provides me with a context that makes it flirtatious and fun.

It’s that fun, that sense of possibility – anywhere, anytime – that propels Karrie and keeps her going.  In pursuit of, she is not goal oriented about love.  That whimsy adds a magical quality to her life.

While there’s much to be said for social media, I feel the best life happens through all five of our senses.  He winked?  I’m talking about the guy next to you.  Not online, the one standing behind you in the movie line.  Next time you’re waiting to buy a ticket, power down your phone and chat, for real.  So much more can happen by engaging, by really being here.  And besides… you never know!

Karrie Kline sure doesn’t.  But she really lives as she finds out.  Enjoy yourself.   Enjoy your time with Karrie.  And if it gets too wet in the dating pond, grab a towel.

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