Our son got married last month. The ceremony was gorgeous, the bride was breathtaking, the groom was cute as could be, it was a beautiful day, and the wedding went off without a hitch. NOT! One major oops threatened the festivities. One of the bridesmaids got her dates mixed up. She thought it was the next weekend, so she went to a Thanksgiving gathering with her family – in Louisiana. The wedding was in Arkansas. No one realized the issue until said bridesmaid failed to show. Hannah was in panic mode, as brides tend to do on the big day. We talked about having the groomsmen enter with the preacher and groom so it wouldn’t be as noticeable that there was one less bridesmaid than there were groomsmen. But Hannah’s stepmom stepped up–literally–and filled the slot. In the end, Hannah wished she’d asked her stepmom to be a bridesmaid, but she was afraid it would seem weird. We all assured her, she was the bride, she could have whatever she wanted on this one day. Several guests commented that it was really sweet for her to have her stepmom as a bridesmaid. Everything else went according to plan, maybe even better, and I gained the sweetest daughter-in-law I could have ever prayed for.
Of course, anything that happens in my real life often lends itself to my fiction. Some wedding in my characters’ future will surely have a no-show bridesmaid. And maybe a stepmom will step in. I’ll spend more pages with the families of the intended couple frantically preparing since I had no idea a wedding was such a massive undertaking with at least a thousand details needing attention.
About three hours before the big event, I learned I was supposed to dance with Logan. I can’t dance, but I did the sway thing anyway. And picked the song, Wind Beneath My Wings by the original artist, Gary Morris for our sway. I don’t cry pretty, so I prepped myself all day, reminding myself since their house isn’t ready, they still live with us. He wasn’t going anywhere except for a brief honeymoon, so I WOULD not cry. And I didn’t. We laughed about how slow the song was, as he made fun of the sappy lyrics and my dancing abilities. I’ve never put a father-daughter or mother-son dance in any of my books. But I certainly will now. I’ll add reality to my fictional weddings, by having the families and friends spend hours on the cleanup afterward. I also learned things. Throwing birdseed is old news. Today’s couples have the bridal party hold sparklers as the couple leaves.
And I got to thinking about all the weddings I’ve written. With eighteen titles and one novella under my belt, most of my books include nuptials. In fact, back when Heartsong Presents was still around, they required a wedding in each book. I’ve ended books with the hero and heroine’s wedding and I’ve had them attend other characters’ nuptials during the course of their story leading to their own happily-ever-after.
The most fun wedding I’ve ever written was in Winning over the Cowboy. The heroine is still smarting from being left at the altar, off the page. But her cousin is getting married and she has to attend the wedding in her hometown, where everyone knows she got stood up at the altar and they all feel sorry for her. She decides to put on a big show to show, she’s over it. And the hero steps in and pretends they’re a couple. It was a fun scene to write and since pretend romance to real love is one of my favorite tropes, I think it’s my favorite wedding scene that I’ve written so far.
So, tell me about your favorite fictional wedding and why you love it. If you can remember the title and author of the book, please share, so the rest of us can add to our TBR piles. All comments will go in the drawing for a print copy of Winning Over the Cowboy. U.S and international included. Deadline: Dec 17th. Bear with me on comments. We’re going to our favorite Christmas concert, Trans Siberian Orchestra, and doing some Christmas shopping, so I probably won’t be around to chat until evening.