The Age of Love

When thinking about the plot for my latest release with TEB, Art of the Written Word, the age gap between the two main characters was one of the first things I considered. However, the idea of an older man/younger woman combination never entered my mind—it could only ever have been an older woman/younger man combination.

It made me wonder why I didn’t consider the former mix, especially when the whole Sugar Daddy phenomenon seems much more prevalent. Making snap judgements are common for many of us and I wonder whether this has something to do with how I consider these relationships.

The first notion that springs to mind when it comes to a Sugar Daddy and—um—Sugar Baby? Trophy? is that the woman is attracted to the power and influence of the older man. This is equally relevant when it comes to a Cougar and—er—Cub? Prey? Fresh Meat? (Oh dear, let me stop there before I get into trouble!) The latter relationship has more of a basis in female empowerment, though it is arguable that the former has it in a different way.

 For Art of the Written Word, making the heroine, Yvonne, older than the hero, Garvey, just seemed natural and enabled me to create the characters and plot as I wanted it. I don’t think it would have worked the other way in this case. It may also have something to do with when men and women reach their sexual peak, which dictates who will make a good match. 

Describing her as a Cougar would do her a disservice as it suggests an element of aggression and Yvonne is far from aggressive. In fact, if you asked her whether she wanted a younger man, she would reply in the negative. 

While age can bring with it a great deal of wisdom, it is still possible to miss things that are not put directly in front of you. Enter Garvey. Though younger, he still possesses the influence, ability and—of course—raw sex appeal to attract Yvonne, leading to a relationship she never would have considered possible…     

Art of the Written Word is released today with Total-E-Bound. An excerpt follows.

“Can I see the picture?” she asked, satisfying a desperate need to fill the silence.

Grinning broadly, the accompanying glint in his eye provided a reply before he said a word. He shook his head. “No, this is for me. I will show you the ideas I have for your wall.” 

It was immediately apparent that pushing him would be futile, though a hint of mischief shining through his look of resolve suggested that he wanted her to press the point. Filled with a feeling of lightness, she couldn’t help but smile at his teasing.

Taking a sip of her drink, she watched him over the rim of her glass, her relaxed state allowing her to look at him more closely. A hint of duskiness scattered across his jaw was created by a touch of stubble. Though she normally thought it scruffy, Yvonne liked the way it looked on Garvey. “How long have you been an artist?”

Though she already knew the answer after having studied his website, it was still a question worth asking—a subtle way of getting to hear his voice.

The plan worked, making Garvey talk about when he had first begun painting and his favourite media.

Eager to show that she was listening, Yvonne specifically asked about images she had seen on his website and how he decided what to paint.

“I get inspiration from everywhere,” he replied. “People, life, music, sex.”   

Though she was unaware of it, her lips twitched at the final word. It wasn’t a sign of a forthcoming response, witty or otherwise. Entranced, she found herself unable to speak.  

Ordinarily, she was ultra-organised and possessed a natural ability to multi-task, which failed her completely when the topic of sex arose. The fact that she had penned a romantic tale about love and sex in a foreign country offered no comfort, as she had written it whilst alone.

The single word he uttered left her curious about his body, thoughts of what he was capable of overtaking her mind until visceral images played in her head like a silent movie. 

The lithe and taut appearance of his body fuelled her imagination, making her picture the pleasure he could deliver. Despite having at least fifteen years on him, Yvonne had no doubt he had enjoyed some impressive experiences that would make him a good teacher.

“You must get inspiration from everywhere too.”

A distinct feeling of discomfort came with his pause, a deafening indication that he expected her to respond. His openness was in contrast to her natural reserve. She was too staid to discuss personal matters, and certainly not with someone so young.

The fact that his self-assurance never gave way to arrogance increased his draw, making her automatically compare him to other men.


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