La La La La La

That's just me, whistling by the blog, innocently.

A couple of people have written me about the first part of "Stay Awhile" so I'm just going to open up this post in case those people want to chat or ask questions in the comments. (No pressure, of course; please stay mum if you like.)

And it is SO nice you're reading it so quickly, but surely there are other more pressing things of a holiday nature you must attend to? Cheers.

(Update: This post is getting a lot of views. Intriguing! Want to weigh in? Please do.)

33 comments:

Ginny said...

:) Just finished. Will never look at diving boards the same way again...

Wilfair Book said...

:)

myrandaroyann said...

I'm with you Ginny, and I'm only 15 pages in! I was finally able to start reading it tonight and I'm loving it. I've already highlighted 11 quotes that I love but I feel like I just need to highlight the whole book! Now it's time to get back to reading, Gomery just found out that the tar bubble is growing and Fair hissed at him (I have that part highlighted). :D

Carly said...

Everything Monty says is quotable. Love it.

Caitlin said...

So...a fair number of those views are probably me, because I've been checking several times a day for the last few days. I wanted to see if anyone else started a discussion, because I have too many random thoughts and needed someone else to provide organization and direction.

I have to say, though, that I am so, so proud of how Fair has grown and all the confidence she's gained. Also, page 125 broke my brain (in a good way) and made me babble incoherent nonsense words. So did page 188, if I'm being totally honest here. ;)

wealhtheow said...

Thurs Mathers is like a combination of Batman and Indiana Jones. Jamila said he's not, because he doesn't get out in the field like Indy, but I think he probably secretly does. THURS THURS THURS!!!!

Wilfair Book said...

Hoo boy. I like to think of you and Jamila gabbing about this topic. I'd say I'd like to be a fly on the wall but I think I'd prefer to be something larger and cuddlier than a housefly. A koala? Would that freak you out if you saw a koala on the wall, eavesdropping?

I'm a bit tired today. The holidays! They're busy!

Ladies, thanks for the feedback. Say what you like here, spoiler or not. If you've read this far down in the comments and haven't read "Stay Awhile," perhaps you may want to pause and turn back. :)

Btw, I'm having some *very* interesting email discussions. If you want to tell me anything, you can, here or on email. Remember, I'm just a cuddly little koala.

Carly said...

Finished at 1:29 a.m. Feeling a little slap-happy but, whatevs!

This person. This person. This person. *le sigh*

I officially want Monty and Sutton to happen.

I'm so proud of Fair!

WHAT IS BEHIND THE DOOR?!

Even more in love with Monty than before, if that's possible.

And those are the thoughts careening around my tired brain at the end of Stay Awhile.

Carly said...

Several hours later...

Fair's level of self-control is INSANE! I just. I can't even...

*SPOILER, PEOPLE*



He is kissing all up on your face and you STILL manage to keep that tie in front of your mouth?!?! She is a far stronger woman than I, that's fo' shizzle. That scene was torturous in the best possible way.

Wilfair Book said...

Okay, Carly, let's talk about that. I'm not even going to put "spoiler" here because if someone is this far down in the comments then they should know that things are gonna get said!

Things. Are. Gonna. Get. Said.

This was something I REALLY weighed. Really. Really really. Should it happen? Should it? Not under the diving board? Should it???

I do not want to string people along, at all. That's why I stuffed a lot of other little sweetnesses into the book (I picture it as a Christmas turkey filled with too many chestnuts. Wait. Does one put chestnuts in turkey???)

But Fair is a smart young woman and she is only days away from being Gomery's boss. Potentially. She's also not terribly experienced, as we know, so I think she perceives that if they start being physical -- I know, I know, kisses are fairly innocent on that spectrum, but still -- then things'll get going between them at a pretty good clip. THEY ARE THERE.

(I don't need to translate "they are there" for anyone here, I am sure!) ;)

Still though. If readers are sad there's no traditional kiss in "Stay Awhile," then I'll be sad. I want people to find it a fun, joyful experience and not one of being letting down. Really, beyond making the central mystery fairly clear, this was my main concern as I was writing this book.

Carly -- the ending of your comment fills me with hope, though. I want there to be a fine line between frustrating and delicious, and I want readers to land on the delicious side (while pushing them, a little gleefully, toward that line).

I think Sutton says something in "Stay Awhile" that's sort of apt here: She says something was on "the awesome side of the line between awesome and dumb."

I want the ending of "Stay Awhile" to be on the delicious side of the line between delicious and frustrating.

Truly.

If you need to speak your mind on this now, there is never a better time. Adore my blog ladies, and you can always contact me privately. You know I am the one of the world's easiest people to chat with? I don't mean to brag, but I'm totally easy to talk with.

I'm (deliciously) confident in the choice I made here, and the book as a whole, but I also want people to have a good experience. These stories aren't simply for me. They're for you. :)

Wilfair Book said...

(By the way, I realize that could sound actually braggy, saying I'm easy to talk with. Semi-jokin' there. I do love to talk with people, but whether I'm an easy conversationalist is up for debate since I tend to talk people's ears right off.)

Carly said...

I loved that they didn't have a full on kiss yet, because I LOOOVE the anticipation! I obviously have masochistic tendencies, lol.

But in all seriousness, once Fair declared the diving board to be THE PLACE, I felt it really had to happen there. Especially since we got a shirtless Gomery scene in Stay Awhile...yeah. The kiss needs to happen under the diving board with bathing suits, lol. I believe that Gomery will enjoy Fair in a bathing suit and we will all enjoy him being shirtless.

I DO like that in Stay Awhile there are more little tender moments and that kisses DO happen, even if they're not of the mouth on mouth variety. Because yes, they are old children in a complicated personal/business relationship, but as Fair points out they DO have urges!

Summery Gomery? I like being tortured. It was delicious;)

Carly said...

Also? I really liked that the fact of Fair and Gomery getting together is kind of bittersweet for Monty. And that he re-acts with anger to the idea of selling the motel to Fair, even though he is crazy about Fair and kind of hates the motel, lol. I am the same way. Change is hard for me - even change for the better, sometimes.

Caitlin said...

I agree with almost all of what Carly has said in her multiple comments. However, I'm actually hoping the first kiss isn't under the diving board. By all means, it needs to happen at some point, but I think it would be more fun if the first time was a surprise. Spontaneity can be good, especially for someone like Fair who is learning to overcome her constant thinking back and thinking ahead.

Also, I worry about their safety when trying to hang onto a diving board and not drown while also dealing with the nerves and potential awkwardness of a first kiss! I wish I could give Fair some advice that you don't want all the extra variables to distract you. :)

Re: Fair's self control. Now-me also wouldn't have had that level of control. Heck, now-me probably would have been making out back in the hallway outside 244. But 20-year-old me, who was completely inexperienced like our dear Fair, would have been nervous and a little bit terrified. To never have been kissed at an age several years past what you feel like society deems "acceptable", it messes with your brain and makes you overthink that stuff like whoa. So I can see where she's coming from.

myrandaroyann said...

Hehe! I'm reading these comments and clapping like a crazed monkey with cymbals! ;) I love, love, loved this book! Like I said earlier, I practically highlighted the whole book! I had to try to make myself not highlight every, single line. I don't know if I can even pick a fave quote.

Carly, I'm still totally with you on all your comments. That "tie kiss?!" Awesome. I loved when Gomery "Rrowr"-ed. :) I also loved that Fair took charge and made decisions!

I was laughing so much (while not squeeing from my "feels") while reading this book, and aloud too! That's saying something coming from this introvert! I also loved the trading of atoms. One of my favorite quotes was Fair's "Math, you are sexy."

*sigh*

myrandaroyann said...

I wish I could make a comment that sounded coherent...oh, well.

Carly said...

Caitlin definitely has a point. I keep thinking of what I would do in Fair's situation, but I've got a few years on her. If I imagine my 20 year old self (just as inexperienced as you mentioned you were at that age)...maybe I would have held back.

And I think you bring up a good point about the first kiss and spontaneity. It's another big jump for Fair to make - relinquishing control of that moment and just letting it happen. I'd be happy either way...as long as they meet under the diving board AT SOME POINT. Maybe the second or third kiss, lol.

Wilfair Book said...

Truth: The Overbove-Finley kiss will either be under the diving board or it won't. :)

And if it isn't, then the diving board is still sitting out there between the hotel and motel, greatly bothering the two people thinking about it.

That said, I like hearing arguments either way!

Kelly said...

Because of the post here a few weeks ago about the lack of actual kissing etc in the books, and enjoying the anticipation, I had kind of assumed there wouldn't be a full on Fair and Gomery kiss. Before I read Stay Awhile I though I would be disappointed by that because I spent the whole of Redwoodian shouting "KISS!!!" at them in my head.

But now I've finished Stay Awhile I can honestly say I wasn't disappointed at all, mostly because all of the non-kissing in the book was seriously hot. I didn't know it was possible to find ankle stroking that sexy. Ahem. SO anyway, yes, I liked that they didn't kiss just yet.

Plus there were a lot of reveals and answers and resolutions to other parts of the story in Stay Awhile, with the Worlds basement and bumper stickers and motel buying solutions. And a lot of personal growth for Fair and the Overboves. So for me the slow burn of Fair and Gomerys relationship didn't feel frustrating because there was a ton of progress in other areas.

Wilfair Book said...

I'm just glad I haven't run anyone off. Yet. :)

Thanks, Kelly!

We'll talk more about this in the weeks to come. I may have another surprise or two up my sleeve, too.

Carly said...

"Some really good stuff happens in my bedroom." --Monty

I believe you, Monty. I definitely believe you.

Wilfair Book said...

Carly, for some reason your comment ended up in the "awaiting moderation" file. When I found it there, I moderated the hell out of it and determined it fit for publication. So I promptly clicked the "publish" box.

Honest? I don't think I've ever clicked a box with such enthusiasm.

kitzie said...

I feel late the the party, but I finally finished and want to weigh in!!!

1- I think I'm in love with Thurs. Indiana Jones? Batman? Sure & yes, pls.

2- Gosh I'm all gooey from that whole tie kissing thing. These kids are so freaking cute. Here's my take on the kissy not kissy thing: When I think of myself as Fair, I DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT GIRL. But unlike some of the more proper ladies commenting, I, uh, was not like Fair at 20. Maybe I liked the boys a little too much. (I had already been dating my husband for three years at Fair's age. Our first kiss was a bit like the tie kiss, but with 100% less tie and 100% more mouth.) When I remove loose women from the equation and I think of Fair as Fair, it is so perfect for her and Gomery to have all the swoony near misses.

3- I'm also pretty in love with all this architectural metaphysics. I want to work at the World's Basement. (But not on Team V, I seriously lack the required enthusiasm. I don't think I've high tened anyone ever.) When one room is described as putting on another like a jacket? Glee. Turning cups on a wall like a locker? So freaking awesome. Alysia, how do you think of this???

4- Waiting. The theme at the end of the book. I'm so bad at that. (See #2.) I don't think I'd be invited to a cool lady lunch with Fair and Clementine, but I so wish I could be. But Sutton's gotta be there too. I would like her to bread someone to defend my honor.

5- I want to embroider a pillow for Sutton, it'll read "B-a-n-a-n-a-s." I hope she likes Gwen Stefani.

I could go on til like #59, but one only has so much time. I'll just leave with my favorite quote (but I love the ones others posted too!): "So you asked The Redwoodian to send you over to the Stay Awhile. It did, because the Redwoodian is awesome..." This convo is so deadpan and fantastic in my head!

Wilfair Book said...

kitzie! I've missed you! You can't even know. How are you??? Happy new year!

Okay, I want to reply in detail to all that you've said, but let's talk Fair. I think she is of two minds about Gomery:

1. Her selfish, corporeal mind is that she is CRAZY about this person and, like, wants to sleep curled around his neckties at night. Her feet hurt over him. HURT.

2. Her rational, get-things-done brain says he absolutely should work for her so she can give him the jump he needs to finish school and have a life.

The upshot? Fair has a big "ramp up" personally and professionally toward the end of the book -- getting the swimming pool and motel, being direct with her parents, telling off Thurs Mathers -- and it continues somewhat with Gomery.

She's still in her finding-her-power mode toward the end of the story, which is why she has a few minor teary moments of "why am here with the mint dish" in the diner?

Conflicting concepts occupying the same space. :)

I think probably all of us at that age would have opted immediately for the wonderful guy and the kiss, but Fair sees she has the power to better the wonderful guy's future first, and she is (somewhat bitterly) opting for that. For the moment.

I'm rambling. It's Friday night after a long week. Should I hit publish on this? I think I shall.

Wilfair Book said...

I just want to add that I absolutely LOVE all the comments on the ending, and the book in general, however you responded to it.

Believe me, I'm sometimes slightly frustrated with Fair Finley, but I put it down to her being a semi-quirky young woman on the verge of some major revelatory moments.

She's just gotten hold of the end of the rope we must all grasp at the start of adulthood. She hasn't yet realized her new friend and old foe can climb it with her.

kitzie said...

Great points! I am proud of Fair for finding her inner strength and managing to make everyone happy. She's such a giver! And a people organizer! It's a testament to how much anticipation I had built up that I could overlook all the good reasons she has for not getting involved right away.

Oh boy, I was just trying to make a mental list of all the steamy places in the book, and it was long and has a few x2s in it. Very nice. :)

Carly said...

Despite my inner tumult on whether or not Fair should just let Gomery kiss her already (on the mouth) or not, one thing has been made abundantly clear to me at the close of "Stay Awhile."

Forearms are HOT, oh yes they are, precious. In the past I've mostly been taken with a chap's upper arms. But no longer shall I neglect the forearm.

When they are riding in the fake Redwoodian and Gomery's notable forerarm is right there across Fair's chest?! I was on tenterhooks wondering if she would touch it! AND SHE DID!

And Gomery WANTED HER TO! After all of the attention Fair gave them in the first two books, Fair finally holding Gomery's forearms was almost as momentous as a lip-kiss would be. Honestly, it felt like a huge moment, lol.

And, and...in the boiler room when Gomery tells Fair he wants her to be rude and awful and claw at people who come near him? I loved that. It kind of really hit home to me how much she means to Gomery.

Wilfair Book said...

kitzie: Thank you! I did indeed unscrew the cap on the side of "Stay Awhile" and connect a steam hose nozzle. Then I turned the steam input dial to high. Whether it's the sort of steam readers want to stand in for the book's duration is up to the individual reader, of course.

There's no traditional hug or kiss in "Stay Awhile," but I did devote much thought to how the feelings and stomach-flips long associated with those two acts might play out in fresh (and still physical) ways.

Which leads me to Carly's comment...

Carly: Cheers for citing that arm-chest moment! Cheers for using the word "chap," too!

I wanted Fair and Gomery to lie down together, in the dark, in this book, but not on a bed. (Uh, I guess they do that, too, but not for long and not in the dark. And not fully. Feet on the floor.)

They couldn't be side by side, facing, because they're not quite at that point yet, but forming them like a "T" seemed to work in my mind. Still intimate but better for shy people just beginning.

And then you get the impromptu arm seatbelt.

Erika said...

Ladies!! Ladies… I have so much love for this book and this entire thread of spoilery-goodness that it actually aches a bit.
Carly, “And, and...in the boiler room when Gomery tells Fair he wants her to be rude and awful and claw at people who come near him? I loved that. It kind of really hit home to me how much she means to Gomery.” --- YES!!! Exactly! I felt like this book was almost one huge testament of Gomery’s feelings for Fair. Her’s too but since we are in her head it was different -- in the best of ways.
Monty, oh Monty, I love how real he is. Some people, definitely me, do not like change or accept it well. I love that he is still able to erupt and simmer back down despite the upsets that follow the word ‘Yet’.
Sutton. I am Team Sutton because she cowed a room full of people with bread. Too awesome for words, also she is amazing.
I want to say so much about so much of this book but can I first ask, why are we not talking about the boiler scenes?! The BOILER SCENES WERE AMAZING!!!
Wow, my own use of caps freaked me out a bit. The sentiment is there though. The boiler scenes practically put heart shapes on my glasses. – yes I did just go there. And the scene with the hearts and Mr. Finley… priceless.
Once again, Alysia, I rode the rollercoaster of feels and I enjoyed every rainbows unicorns moment of it. I was waiting for the kiss despite knowing it probably wouldn’t happen but I loved all of the in betweens so so so much. I get why they aren’t rushing into it and I am loving the buildup, although I was doing the “JUST KISS PLEASE!!” yell at them quite a bit.

Also, I've arrived so late to this party is is embarassing... sorry!!

Erika said...

Also giving up your glasses for shoes? Be still my glasses wearing heart. That's some kind of feeling!

Wilfair Book said...

Erika! Cheers to all that. Thanks for weighing in. Thanks for citing the glasses moment, too.

I like the concept of bartering goods in general -- it can have some pretty interesting outcomes in life and in fiction -- but that particular barter was all for Fair. I don't mean just to get her a pair of shoes. I believe that Gomery didn't know if his offer would be accepted but he wanted to make it in front of Fair.

Up to that point everything between them had been (mostly) light and flirty but I think Gomery making that offer is him saying "I'm serious about you." And it amused me that he'd incorporate a third person to let her know that, and the antagonist at that. So he's totally talking to Fair there, even if he's talking to someone else.

Of course, Gomery *did* absolutely want to get her a pair of shoes there, but regardless of how that played out, he wanted her to know he'd put up his glasses for a sweaty old shoe on her behalf.

A lot of the books, in obvious retrospect, are two people talking or doing something for a third person's benefit. A third person who happens to be in earshot.

Wilfair Book said...

It also begs the question as to what would have happened if Beefy hadn't traded his shoes for Gomery's glasses.

That would have put Gomery in a spot: He'd certainly give Fair his own shoes, but that would have meant he couldn't walk with her up the hill. Monty still could have, though, so Gomery'd have to decide if the party should split up. And if he wanted to stay alone in the second Redwoodian with the misguided do-gooders.

Fair determined later in the book that she would not accept a piggyback ride from Gomery if offered (it wasn't). But she might from Monty. So maybe she could have gotten up the hill that way, on Monty's back, with Gomery in tow, although Monty would have complained A LOT on the way up about his sudden role as Fair's personal taxi cab.

Or he'd described the feeling of Fair on his back in slightly inappropriate terms. I can see that.

Erika said...

Now I really want a Monty/Fair piggyback ride scene!

I am also a fan of the two people talking for a third persons benefit. Especially if it's Monty and Gomery talking for Fair's benefit which there was a lot of, and I enjoyed, in Stay Awhe.

 
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