Monday, April 3, 2017

Unusual Occupations in Romance by Melinda Curtis

Welcome to Harmony Valley! Fifteen years or so ago, the largest employer in town (the grain mill) exploded, burned to the ground, and closed. Without jobs, people moved away...everyone except for retirees, who couldn't afford to take a loss on their homes. They stayed.

When I decided to set a romance series in Harmony Valley, I had carte blanch to create jobs to be filled. The first jobs were relatively easy - 3 dot com millionaires return to Harmony Valley and decide to start a winery. They'd need a support group - a winemaker, a field manager, a cellar supervisor. Other jobs for heroes and heroines followed - veterinarian, elderly caretaker, vet tech, horse whisperer, mechanic, beautician. And now...a fireman and a postmaster.

You read that right. My heroine in Love, Special Delivery returns to Harmony Valley to open up the post office. Not exactly the kind of job you read about every day. I believe my editor's eyebrows raised when I pitched it to her. I have a list of occupations I'm considering for the series (although I must admit, I couldn't bring myself to plot a story about the garbage collector).

There are other romances I've read with unusual hero/heroine occupations. I remember reading a historical with a rat catcher as a hero. It was a reversal on My Fair Lady. And a contemporary story about a woman who cleans up bloody crime scenes for a living.

Can you recall any unusual occupations in books you've read? Are there any occupations you'd raise your eyebrows for?

Melinda Curtis is an award-winning USA Today Bestseller. Her latest releases are Love, Special Delivery (out now!), A Kiss is Just a Kiss (a sweet romantic comedy, available 4/27), and Frankly, my dear...Creating Unforgettable Characters (a writing craft book, available now). To celebrate the release of Love, Special Delivery, Melinda is offering a prize pack on her Facebook page. You can enter for your chance to win here. Sign up for Melinda's mailing list here and receive FREE READS.

13 comments:

  1. I can't think of anything that would top a rat catcher, Melinda. :) Congratulations on your release!

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  2. You've got me thinking about garbage collector, Melinda. If anyone could make that story intriguing, it would be you! :) Congratulations on your new release from me, too!

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  3. I haven't read the book yet, it's on my TBR list, but the protagonist inherits a vintage ambulance from an elderly neighbor and uses it to deliver desserts for her Emergency Dessert Squad business. I thought that was original.
    Congratulations on your new release. I've loved the cover since the first time I saw it on Amazon.

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  4. I love this. I can't wait to read about the postmaster (30 years in the USPS--does it show?).

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  5. I like the idea of a postmaster. It seems peaceful. Mail, addresses, post boxes... seeing everything that goes through the post office in a tiny town. I like it!

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  6. I didn't even know rat catcher could be a job! How did I miss that at the job fair in high school?!?
    Congrats on your latest book. I love the Harmony Valley series and can't wait to read this one!

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  7. This sounds like fun, Melinda. I'm looking forward to reading it!

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  8. Years ago, someone asked me what I did for a living and when I said I was ghostwriter, she asked if the ghosts I wrote about ever haunted me at night. An entirely new take on ghostwriting!

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  9. I've read two mysteries with postal workers as protagonists, but never a romance, so I'm looking forward to this one. My hero in the upcoming Christmas book is a fisherman/snow plow driver. I love the range of occupations you've created in Harmony Valley, and garbage collectors need love, too. Just saying.

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  10. A rat catcher?!?! Now I've heard everything!
    With your sharp sense of humor, this postmaster story will be terrific! Congrats!

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  11. Love your unusual jobs! And I like the way you built a town full of unusual jobs by bringing in the dot com millionaires! And that's an awesome cover!

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  12. I can't top rat catcher. And what a neat idea for the series.

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  13. Sounds brill Melinda what a great idea

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