Michael Offutt & A Fascination With the 1 Percent

Thursday, January 17, 2013



Today, I’m happy to host MichaelOffutt, a wonderful blogging buddy. His second book Oculus is out! Haven’t read it yet and I really wanted to cheat, but I hear I should read Slipstream first. Here’s Mike…

 A Fascination With the 1 Percent

This election year, we saw a lot of talk about the 1%--those Americans who are fabulously wealthy. Because I’m not wealthy but have always wished that I was, I wanted Jordan (my protagonist) to come face-to-face with this in the book Oculus and to experience some of its benefits. I have to say, I really enjoyed myself.

Jordan befriends Andy Callahan who plays another forward on his hockey team. Over Thanksgiving, they fly to LaGuardia and then get taken by a Goldman Sachs helicopter to Andy’s parent’s house in Sagoponack which is in the Hamptons out on Long Island.

I absolutely loved reading about the homes out in the Hamptons, paging through full color spreads of the unimaginably wealthy, looking at their kitchens and the way their Christmas trees looked, and I thought “this TOTALLY needs to go into my book.” It’s very “Martha Stewart” or “Thomas Kincaid” in places, and I think that I’m going to continue the trend through the next book (at least in part) as I give Jordan the Christmas that I never had.

This includes a trip to FAO Schwartz, seeing the huge Christmas Tree in Rockefeller plaza, and a full on really special Christmas Eve that takes place in an awesome Hamptons mansion with snow on the pines outside and brilliantly colored paper covering mysterious presents under a huge tree.  It goes without saying there there’ll be a huge fireplace, hot cocoa, and lots of cheery faces.

Anyway, that life of the super rich is as much “fantasy” and “science fiction” to me as the paranormal element that I write about. In other words, neither will actually ever be real for me in my life.  But it is a lot of fun to daydream. And I guess in our hearts, all writers are just dreamers.

Right?

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30 comments:

  1. Ooh, that sounds like fun! I always enjoy watching movies where I get to see fancy houses :-) When I was little I always wished I had magical powers, or that I could fly like Peter Pan. So now I write stories where the characters get to do magic. Yep, I'm just a dreamer too :-)

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    1. I've dreamt of flying. When I woke up from the dream, it was always a disappointment.

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  2. If you're going to fantasize about being wealthy, might as well go all out!

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    1. At the Consumer Electronics Show, there was this gorgeous red Ferrari that was all tricked out. Alex, from what I know of you and liking speed, you would have loved it. I know I wanted to lick the paint, stroke it, and say "be mine baby."

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  3. Hahaha so true. I also like imagining what life is like for the 1% or almost anyone else, really.

    It's part of the writing fun.

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  4. I've never flown in a helicopter before, but it's something I hope to experience someday. As for the rest, I'll just be content in reading about it in your books. (:

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    1. You'll make it big, Elise. Then you can tell me how it is while you're having tea with J.K. Rowling.

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  5. What a fun element to add to your book. I bet you did have fun writing about that 1%!

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  6. So true. Being a part of the 1% is definitely a fantasy for most people.

    Hi, Joy! *waves* I finally got on your blog again!

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    1. I guess that's why only 1% of people in the U.S. get to live that lifestyle. For what it's worth, I did see some of it on display in Vegas with the jaw-dropping wealth in every casino.

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  7. Joy, I've just read the first chapter of "Don't Get Mad Get Even" and WOW! What an an awesome read. The chapter's ending was magnificent, pure genius. Can't wait for time to open up so I can read more.

    About the Hamptons -- well, since hub's from New Hampshire, we've driven through several times. And since I'm from a water-logged state (Louisiana), I simply didn't 'get' all the fuss about the Hamptons. That's probably a good thing, though.

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    1. I think the fuss about the Hamptons is all self-promoted.

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  8. Haha I love the title of this post. I could definitely handle being part of the 1%. Your daydreams for this book sound like a lot of fun. Why can't I have a friend like Andy Callahan?

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  9. That is what writers do really, isn't it? Write about things they've experienced or fantasized?

    That's the fun of being a writer, I guess!

    Hi JL!

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  10. Spoken like a true writer. We all share the same insanity.

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  11. I want to say thank you to everyone who has visited my guest post today. I appreciate every one of you and hope that if you also dream of wealth, that it comes in enormous truck loads for you.

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  12. Oh, how cool! I love flipping through home magazines (specifically stone farmhouse renovations for me~ don't really know why) and picking out the features I love/shun. And your plans for Jordan's X-mas in the next book sound awesome :) PS~ your covers for Slipstream and Oculus are fantastic!

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  13. I'm not sure I could imagine what life is like for the 1%, but it's nice to dream.

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  14. I suspect that, as wonderful as life may be for the 1%, it's accompanied by a distinct set of problems... oh well, I suppose that the wealth helps them to manage and deal with the problems...
    Yes, it's wonderful to dream... so dream on!!
    Btw, your cover art is absolutely gorgeous... it's like something that you find difficult to tear your eyes away from... you are super-talented!!!

    Hi Joy! *waving*

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  15. I wonder how many of us would miss our current lives if we could trade places with some of the 1%. I'll bet a lot of us. Have a great weekend!

    Hi, Joy :)

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  16. Daydreams are what make for some super stories. Good luck, Michael!

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  17. That's one of the things I love about being a fiction writer. We can live vicariously through our characters.

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Don't be shy. I'd love to hear what you think.