By Marilyn BaronWouldn’t it be nice if we all had our own private matchmaker to help us find our soul mate? In my newly released humorous paranormal e-short story, Dead Mix, villain Devlin Burns tries to turn the tables on hero Daniel Craig (not 007) and heroine Tia Stavros in their hunt for lost souls, as he engineers a match, not exactly made in heaven. In my e-short story Follow an Angel, Eden Eastman despairs she’ll ever find her soul mate and flees New York City, the Land of Bad Dates, for the Atlantic coast of Florida, where she hopes to pick up the pieces of her broken heart. When an angel on a mission drops into her 5th floor beach condo, all Heaven breaks loose. In both of these stories, a higher power (Angel or Devil) intervenes in the love match.
I had the pleasure of meeting a real live matchmaker from the province of Quebec in Canada on a recent trip to Spain and the privilege of interviewing her aboard the AVE, the high-speed train from Cordoba to Madrid. She is a lovely woman with a spiritual gift for helping people find each other. She offers some great real-world advice about finding your soul mate.
Why did you become a matchmaker? And how long have you been in the business?
The Matchmaker: I became a matchmaker about 44 years ago because I like people. I’m very outgoing and sociable – an extravert. I was a girl among nine males in the family – cousins and brothers – and I was very comfortable with males. I had no problem approaching them and I wasn’t reticent about asking them to meet my unattached girlfriends. I had a lot of confidence, being the eldest in the family. If I wanted to meet someone, I would use that skill set on my own behalf.
Do you believe in soul mates?
The Matchmaker: I don’t believe there’s only one person for everyone. That’s too romantic a concept. I feel there’s someone for someone at 20, someone for someone at 35. As you age and other people age, you become interested in different kinds of people at different stages of your life as you experience different situations and life’s changes.
How much do you charge for making a match?
The Matchmaker: I don’t do it for money. I do it for a “mitzvah,” the Hebrew word for an act of human kindness. I ask people to donate to a charity of their choice and to do it on my behalf. I want to pass the goodness on. I usually get my clients through referrals.
Can you explain the matchmaking process?
The Matchmaker: I have to meet the person who wants to be fixed up. They have to contact me and I meet them most often in a food court or public place or if it’s a friend of a friend, I invite them to my house for tea. I have to like them. I have to feel a good vibe. They have to be a good person. After the date, I like them to call me and give me some feedback, and if that person was rude or mean, I won’t introduce them to anyone again.
I’ll talk to them and write down information on index cards. How tall is the man? What age person is the client interested in meeting? Have they been married before? Are they divorced?
Sometimes, men are charming and wonderful and kind and funny with me. But when they’re on the date, they behave differently. They don’t show off their best qualities. I ask people to try to give it two to three dates. Sometimes, on the first date, people are nervous. So give it a chance.
I might not think it will be a perfect meeting between Mr. A and Miss B. But it’s like opening up a window on the world for you to meet other people through the people you date. Say Mr. A invites you to a party or asks you to play tennis with another couple. And you’ll meet other people at that party or on the court. That’s how I met my husband.
How many marriages have you arranged?
The Matchmaker: Twenty-six marriages. Of those 26, only one couple got divorced. I’ve had people who have been together into their late 70s. Some don’t live together but they stay together for four or five years, take cruises together, take extended vacations. Some stay together for 13 years so they feel married. I mainly fix up people up I know who are my age. I’ve matched up most of my girlfriends.
I remember the wedding of a couple of longtime friends I had fixed up. They were in the 55 age range and had never been married. The man was having trouble making up his mind. He was a perfectionist. I was afraid he was going to be a runaway groom so I held the wedding in my house. I had planned a lovely outdoor wedding to be followed by a luncheon. It was overcast and I was afraid it was going to rain on the wedding day, so I said to God, “Let’s have the chuppah (a wedding canopy) outside, please don’t let it rain.” When the rabbi came out looking for me, my husband took him aside and said, “Give my wife a moment. She’s talking to God.”
I remember another man. He was 62, had never been married. He was a tough SOB. He told me what he wanted – that his partner had to be a triple black diamond skier. I paired him with a woman who just wanted a friend to ski with. I knew she was looking to get rid of her husband, who was a terrible mate. She wanted him out of her life. But she wasn’t looking for another husband. They skied together for three years. Then she had an accident. He visited her in the hospital and he was so sweet that their friendship turned into a love affair and they got married and are very happy.
What is the secret to a good match?
The Matchmaker: A willingness to accept a person as an individual, not want to make that person over. Don’t take an ABC and try to turn them into a DEF. Instead, say, “This is what I bring to the table; this is what you bring to the mix.” Even if someone is finicky, crazy, a fussy eater, or an introvert, if you can add something to the mix, you could be good together.
One man was a 55-year-old architect who had been very attached to his elderly parents. My friend, who liked the arts and sciences, took care of him. She likes to bake, cook and clean, so it worked out nicely.
Sometimes, I’ll take someone on, a lovely person who needs a makeover. One woman always wore the wrong colors, style and makeup. I have a friend who’s a fashion stylist and I referred her to this person. She looks so much better now, she went from unflattering colors and style to accenting and working with her features and she met somebody on her own.
Do you believe in love at first sight?
The Matchmaker: I don’t believe in love at first sight. That’s like opening a package on Christmas. It’s wrapped in red and gold paper and a big gold bow. You open it up, expecting an ermine stole and you get a pair of oven mitts. Maybe the ermine stole was in a plain brown bag. A person doesn’t have to be perfect as long as he or she has a good soul, is deep thinking, and has good character and values you can respect.
***In Dead Mix, the devil goes down to Georgia. Roswell, Georgia, and more specifically, The Lion’s Den music store. Enter at your own risk. The proprietor there specializes in mixing music to die for...on CDs that are guaranteed to knock you dead by the final note. As the citizens of Roswell go missing, one man, Daniel Craig, ventures into town on the hunt for lost souls, a search that will change his life, forever.
To read a free excerpt of Dead Mix, or purchase a PDF eBook file or find a Kindle, Nook, OmniLit or Smashwords link , visit TWB Press at http://www.twbpress.com/deadmix.html. Or find Dead Mix on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Mix-ebook/dp/B008P4LFI4/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1343310620&sr=1-1&keywords=dead+mix or
Hope you’ll give Dead Mix a spin.
Find Follow an Angel on TWB Press or links to Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords at http://www.twbpress.com/followanangel.html.http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Mix-ebook/dp/B008P4LFI4/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1346254005&sr=8-6&keywords=Marilyn+Baronhttp://www.amazon.com/Dead-Mix-ebook/dp/B008P4LFI4/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1346254005&sr=8-6&keywords=Marilyn+Baron
Georgia Author Marilyn Baron, a public relations consultant in Atlanta, writes humorous women’s fiction, humorous paranormal short stories and romantic suspense. Her latest release, Dead Mix, was released July 25 from TWB Press at http://www.twbpress.com/deadmix.html; Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Mix-ebook/dp/B008P4LFI4/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1344028502&sr=1-1&keywords=Dead+Mix and Barnes & Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dead-mix-marilyn-baron/1112257979?ean=2940014991049.To read more about her women’s fiction, “The Edger,” which received a 4 ½-star rating in RT Book Reviews’ September 2012 issue, visit her blog at Petit Fours and Hot Tamales at http://www.petitfoursandhottamales.com/marilyn-baron/; Find her angel stories, “A Choir of Angels,” “Follow an Angel,” and “The Stand-in Bridegroom, “ at TWB Press: http://www.twbpress.com/achoirofangels.html. Find her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Marilyn-Baron/286807714666748 and Twitter at https://twitter.com/MarilynBaron. Her next book, “Under the Moon Gate,” a romantic thriller set in contemporary and WW II Bermuda, will be released from The Wild Rose Press in spring 2013. Marilyn is a member of Romance Writers of America, Georgia Romance Writers (GRW) and Marketing for Romance Writers. She is a finalist in the GRW 2012 Unpublished Maggie Award of Excellence in the Paranormal/Fantasy category for her manuscript, “Sixth Sense.”