Thursday, January 6, 2011

What Writers Can Learn From Millionaire Matchmaker

Confession: I'm not sure if you've noticed, but I'm in love with TV.

When I say "in love", I mean obsessed. It's quite sad, really. 

Anyway, I am not ashamed of the TV shows I watch. I love them. Why would they embarrass me?


So. There's one TV show I'd never even imagined could teach me anything about writing. Until it did. And I was PWN'd. 

Which TV show, you ask?

Millionaire Matchmaker on BRAVO

*blushes even harder*

Anyway, Patti Stanger (the woman pictured above) is a matchmaker for millionaires. Her clients run the gamut from uber-nice wealthy people to deranged and frightening wealthy people. The latter is best represented by a woman who received Patti's help on this week's episode. You see, her ideal mate is Matthew McConaughey. And she won't settle for less. Or other qualities in a man. Like, say, an actual personality. 

Being the savvy lady she is, Patti hooked her up with a bunch of great guys who were nothing like Matthew McConaughey... and one Hot Dude. The Hot Dude was a test. To see if Deranged And Frightening Girl fell for his allure. 

And she did.

She picked him over Other Great Guys With Actual Personalities, then they went on a date. Which sucked. But Deranged And Frightening Girl never noticed.

Exhibit A (if you're easily offended, forgive my French...)

Hot Dude: "I'm an asshole."

Deranged And Frightening Girl: "I love assholes..."


Let's change the scenario a bit. Deranged And Frightening Girl is actually Aspiring Author. Hot Dude is Hot Trend Of The Moment. Aspiring Author wants to get published badly. Hot Trend Of The Moment might prove tricky to write for Aspiring Author, seeing as they don't read the genre and don't know how to write for it. But Aspiring Author is up for the challenge. Because Hot Trend Of The Moment will get them an agent/publishing deal/uber-awesome advance. 

Aspiring Author writes a manuscript using Hot Trend Of The Moment. Then they query. Then they get rejected. Over and over and over. Aspiring Author scratches head, not sure why this is so.

Here's why:

Hot Trend Of The Moment: "I'm not for you."

Aspiring Author: "I love things that are not for me..."

Folks, I have only one point to make with this post--know your match. You can explore genres, obviously, to find the one that fits best. Or you can fit amazingly well in a TON of genres. But you have to really love what you're writing about. 

Don't fail Patti's test. Say NO to the hotness. 

Unless it was meant to be. In that case, love that asshole all you want :D

Now tell me: is there a genre you think isn't your match??


  1. Romance, or Literary Fiction. I do like books from both genres, since there are some great writers who work in them, but I don't think I'd be able to write them as well as something like Science Fiction. That's the genre of the novel I'm currently working on.

  2. I want to see this programme!!! What happened to Deranged Rich Woman? Does she get her money back from Millionaire Matchmaker woman?!!?

    Travel writing. I truly do not do travel writing! Take care

  3. This is such a great post! I know for an absolute fact that historical fiction is NOT my match. I don't mind reading it, but I don't ever see myself actually writing it. I never stayed awake in history classes long enough to make that subject a passion. :)

  4. I'm with Pam, not much for historicals. But I think you make an important point--Hot Trend of the Moment is often Hot Trend of Yesterday by the time you're ready to query, so why bother? It's like the Hot Guy saying, "Oh, by the way, I got married a few years ago."

  5. I LOVE Millionaire Matchmaker! AND this post. It's true, you really do need to know your "match." Not just yoru genre, but writing style, too. OH, and characters, plots, etc. Kind of 'write what you know'--not necessarily that you have to write reality (aaaaha how boring), but that how well can you write in a writing style that IS NOT for you? Or how well can you represent a character that is totally NOT you at all?

    Genres that aren't my match: horror. mystery. harlequin. sci-fi. ANYTHING I haven't actually read/heard about before now. Bottom line: I can and will only write YA :D

  6. That show is hilarious! Some of those millionaires are punks