Shannon here: Today my guest is Inspirational author, Marlo Schalesky. Marlo is sharing how she met her husband and how her hero and heroine met in her book. She’s giving away a copy of Shades of Morning. Leave a comment for a chance to win any time this week. Deadline: 8:00 PM Central, Friday, July 16.
1. How did you meet your spouse?
I met my wonderful husband Spring quarter in my freshman year at Stanford University. We were at an Intervarsity Christian Fellowship conference at Mount Diablo in California, and Bryan was in charge of the meal for everyone. He asked for help, and I volunteered. During the summer, we would be in the same dorm on campus. It turned out that we would have rooms next door to each other, and Bible study would be held in his room. I was in love instantly! (It took him a little longer.) For more fun info (including bits on our first kiss!!), see my Beyond the Night Stanford Tour video on my media page at http://www.marloschalesky.com/media/.
2. How do your hero and heroine meet?
In Shades of Morning, Marnie and Taylor meet just outside a little cottage beside the sea as Marnie rumbles up on her big ol’ Harley and Taylor’s jaw drops in surprise. For him, it’s practically love at first sight … with the girl AND the Harley!
Together they ran down the street, her in her bare feet, him clutching her ridiculous shoes in one hand while the other held hers. Lolling buildings drooped on either side of them. Above, streetlights sputtered and winked. A breeze picked up bits of litter and tossed them into the gutters like ticker-tape from some bygone parade.
He held her hand tighter while his limbs shook and his mouth went dry. They jogged around a corner. They were almost there. Almost. Along this new street, the stores were dark, silent. Except for one. They turned toward it. A truck sped past and was gone. One car sat in the parking lot. Other than that, everything was empty. Except the store with its lights blazing.
Taylor slowed to a walk.
Marnie stopped beside him. “What’s this?”
He stopped too, then grinned. “Guess.”
“Tom’s Pet Palace? I’m thinking a pet store.” Her eyes narrowed as she studied him. “You are crazy, aren’t you?”
He nodded. “I bribed them.”
“Because. You’ll see.” Taylor led her inside.
Tom stood behind the register. “Evening.” He nodded with a smile so big his face looked like a white fence with a boy’s eyes peeking over the top. “Happy shopping.” He snickered.
“Thanks.” Marnie hesitated.
Taylor looked up and saw the banner that was rolled up at the top of the front windows. Later, at just the precise moment, Tom would unravel it. Confetti would fly. And there, in shiny red, white, and blue would be the question. The big honkin’ question. Oh, Lord, let her say yes.
He took a deep breath, then pulled her farther into the store, past the bags of dog food, past the shimmering glass tanks, past the stacks of wired cages, to the back end of the room.
And there they were. Puppies, kittens, fish, hamsters, lizards, parrots, bunnies. He halted. “Merry Christmas.”
She stood next to him, her gaze wide eyed now, roaming over the pets. “It’s July.”
“Happy Birthday, then.”
“My birthday’s not until September.”
He turned her toward him and took both her hands in his. “Pick one, Marnie.”
“Pick one. A pet. Whatever you want.”
“I’m getting you your first pet. You can have one now. No more foster homes, no more allergies. No more moving around from place to place. Do you know what I’m saying?”
A smile crept over her face. She turned back to the animals. “Anything I want?”
She didn’t understand. Not fully, not just yet. But she would. He brushed her hair back with his fingertips. “Anything. A cute little puppy, a kitten, a parakeet, whatever.”
She pointed to the top shelf. “I want that.”
Taylor looked up to where she had pointed. A green monster stared down at him. “You’re kidding.”
Tom sauntered up and rested his fists against his sides. “She pick yet?”
Taylor pointed. “She wants that thing.”
Tom frowned. “Dude, you’re doomed.” He peered at Marnie. “You sure you want Max there? Iguanas grow to be like five-feet long and can live up to twenty years. Maybe a nice hamster instead?”
“He’s perfect. And I don’t like rats.”
“What’s the difference?”
“Snake then? Or a cute little lizard?”
Marnie walked over to the shelves and stared up at the iguana. “My first pet. He’s gorgeous.” Her face glowed.
Taylor sighed. “We’ll take the monster. And a tank, and some food, and whatever else we need.”
“A heating lamp, a rock—”
“Just package it all up before I change my mind.”
Marnie turned and regarded him for a long moment. “You’re serious, aren’t you? You really are going get me an iguana.”
“I am and—” His words cut off as Marnie threw herself into his arms. His hat knocked to the floor. A muffled “thank you” sounded in his ear. And all he could see were full lips and shiny hair. All he could smell was the sweetness of her perfume. All he could taste was the longing of her breath mingling with his.
His hand moved to his pocket. His fingers tightened around the box. His other hand reached up and curled around her neck. He drew her closer, closer, his eyes on hers, their lips nearly touching. And then —
Her phone rang.
She jumped back and dug in her purse. She pulled out the phone and pressed it to her ear. “Hello?”
Then her eyes caught his. Her body trembled. “It’s Doris. Rose had a heart attack.”
And that was the end of his perfect plan.
About Marlo: Marlo Schalesky is the award winning author of several books, including her soon-to-be-released novel Shades of Morning, which combines a love story with a surprise ending twist to create a new type of novel that she hopes will impact readers at their deepest levels. Marlo’s other books include the Christy Award winning novel Beyond the Night, and its sequel If Tomorrow Never Comes, as well as her only nonfiction Empty Womb, Aching Heart– Hope and Help for Those Struggling with Infertility.
She’s had nearly 700 articles published in various Christian magazines, including Focus on the Family, Today’s Christian Woman, In Touch, and Decision. She has contributed to Dr. Dobson’s Night Light Devotional for Couples, Tyndale’s Book of Devotions for Kids #3, and Discipleship Journal’s 101 Small Group Ideas. She is a speaker and a regular columnist for Power for Living.
Marlo is also a California native, a small business owner, and a graduate of Stanford University (with a B.S. in Chemistry!). In addition, she has earned her Masters in Theology, with an emphasis in Biblical Studies, from Fuller Theological Seminary.
Marlo lives with her husband and five young children in a log home in Central California.
When she’s not changing diapers, doing laundry, or writing books, Marlo loves sipping Starbucks white mochas, reading the New Testament in Greek, and talking about finding the deep places of God in the disappointments of life. Learn more about her here: www.marloschalesky.com, www.marloschalesky.blogspot., www.facebook.com/MarloSchalesky, and www.twitter.com/MarloSchalesky.