It’s Time

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It sneaks up on you out of the dark, sometimes in broad daylight, and you never see it coming. “Oh, it’s you…” you may say. After all, you recognize it. It’s no stranger. It’s just been a while. “What are you doing here?”

Or more likely, more to yourself, “Am I ready for this?”

When it comes barrelling like a train around the bend, you’re just standing helplessly in the middle of the tracks. “Get off the tracks!” the audience yells, but by the time you react, the train is upon you, over you, through you….

It’s also something you may seek, peering into corners, under tables, even plumbing the depths of the past. And a lot of us find it there, surprisingly, nestled against the bosom of time. You also may know exactly where it is, and spend your time nurturing it with poignant tenderness. Or wrestling it with reckless fervor.

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It’s difficult to describe and hard to define. But call it an idea. A wild thing. A philosophy. A chemical reaction. A monster.

Love. Love is all of the above, and then some. Love and romance. And even better…time-travel romance.

There’s nobody here, but you don’t have to admit it out loud if you’re into romance. In case your scientist friends deem you a fool because it’s been incontestably proven that ‘love’ is an abstract concept derived from chemical interactions, or the other lion tamers snort in disgust since any notions of ‘love’ will have the big cats clawing your back open because they can smell ‘weakness’ in the air.

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But I see no shame in the well-crafted romantic time travel story, or in romance in general. Not the crappy ones. The good ones. Of which, unfortunately, in my opinion at least, are few and far between. I might be toeing the PC line here to suggest this is largely not a guy topic, generally, but if you know someone who’s into this kind of thing,  guy or girl, I have three gems for you to share.

In time travel romances, there’s a variety of ways that the heroines, usually by accident, trigger their leap back in time.

In an earlier blog, I complained about these tropes endlessly and also outlined how I would write a time travel book (if I had the cajones to actually do it and not just talk about it):  https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/106774177/posts/2314. (My heroine would be a 45-year-old bodybuilder with a rotator cuff injury and no patience for men in kilts.)

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Two books which transcended, in my opinion, not only the mechanism by which they time traveled but the usual story, too, are “Beautiful Wreck” by Larissa Brown: larissabrown and “Transcendence” by Shay Savage: shay savage.

Dive into “Beautiful Wreck”–or tell someone you know to dive in–for its luscious writing describing the stark imagery of an ancient Viking civilization. Yeah, I know. Vikings. Ha ha. But this one’s well-researched and elaborately detailed. It’s moody and dark. A genuine attraction between the two main characters unspools gradually and unhurriedly in the midst of a strange mystery  later brought to light. And I adore the title. Because I love opposite words that are shoved together.

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“Transcendence” also bypasses the usual touching of a mysterious gem/locket/necklace/ring, car driving off a cliff, into fog, into a bog, partial concussion or other bodily damage by scientific means, and believably so.

But the amazing thing about “Transcendence” is its point of view, which comes entirely from the male protagonist, who is pre-lingual, and therefore verbal communication between he and his potential mate is nil, resulting in only universal sign language and lots of eye contact.

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The male’s internal monologue is repetitive and hilarious, casting the much of the story in a light, comical air, and is more than worth reading, in my opinion.

I’m sure I don’t have to remind anyone about Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander,” the OG of time travel romance, from 1991, the one that started it all and which has been made into an extremely popular series on Starz. The extent of Gabaldon’s historical research pretty much outshines almost everyone else in spades, along with Jamie and Clare’s careful evolution as a couple.

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I love to love love. That’s not a typo. I love love. Love to love it. Especially in the unexpected and unusual circumstances that altered reality presents.

It’s time. Go out back, right now, jump in the time machine where you have it hidden behind the shed–or take that person with you whom you know will love this stuff–and set your coordinates for these stories.

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I’m personally so happy I found them, because it makes me love love even more. The monster, philosophy, wild thing, expected, unexpected, past, present, future: I love them all. Happy Valentine’s Day.

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29 thoughts on “It’s Time

  1. I wrote the first 2 down and already have the third (Outlander) which I started a long time ago but didn’t take too far. Covid is giving me more time to read. It’s been a long long while since reading a good romance. Maybe it’s time. Happy Valentine’s Day, Stacey! ❤ p.s. I like what you did between your characters in Day for Night and think you would knock a romantic time travel story out of the park!!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well wouldn’t you know.

    Tubularsock’s Time Machine is in for service due to hitting an astroid on Tubularsock’s last search for love.

    As you know one always needs to turn right to miss an incoming astroid but Tubularsock turned left thinking he was outgoing from an incoming and got all mixed up thus realizing that that is the ultimate lesson of love.

    Nothing could be more clear.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sorry, Tube, but everyone knows time machines are a magnet for asteroids. It doesn’t matter which way you turn. And searching for love in a time machine during an asteroid storm is strictly forbidden in the accepted universal time travel credo!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well SB, Tubularsock knows that you are completely correct with your knowledge about asteroids including its spelling.

      However, Tubularsock was talking about astroids which have a completely different trajectory as well as spelling. (opps!)

      But not to be confused with asstroids when speaking of love.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Didn’t even see it, Mr. Tube. Astroid. Not to be confused with asteroid, or the bogeyman of outer space: the dreaded asstroids. Yiiiiikes, lolololol !!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Aw, thanks for asking! It’s Jade, right? I think I see people referring to you as Ms. Lee but also Jade…..?
    I sent it back to the publisher after going through their edits, so….I don’t know! If I were to take a wild guess, if everything doesn’t fall apart even more this year….maybe by summer it could be out?! Not sure. Could happen, haha.

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  5. It doesn’t take a lot of prompting from me to drop in a TERMINATOR (1984) clip pretty much anywhere. Hope you don’t mind Stacey.

    While considered an action sci-fi classic, this movie rarely gets acknowledged for the beautiful and tender love story between Reese and Sarah which is at it’s heart. This clip contains the classic line – “I came across time for you Sarah… I love you.”

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Anytime, Glen. Terminator, in its own way, IS time travel romance, too. That scene is very touching. Basically, even if I’d only met him five minutes before, that small speech would pretty much be the catalyst for an immediate roll in the hay, hehehehe. I mean, who wouldn’t with Reese, after that?! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Time travel love…..as soon as I think of it,I think instantly of “Time After Time” (a rare movie I would like to see remade – but with conditions) which was really magical to me when I saw it at 15. While the effects haven’t aged well,the wonderful chemistry between HG Welles and his Amy as played by Malcolm McDowell and Mary Steenbergen will always be immortal.
    I have heard a lot of good things about Outlander and I have the series down as a must read once my library’s bookstore reopens!! This was a delightful entry Stacey!!!

    Liked by 2 people

      • Yeah, it would lose a lot in translation, wouldn’t it?
        But maybe if they did it…just….right……
        I know what you mean, tho.
        Like when they remade Gene Wilder’s Willy Wonka with Johnny Depp playing it sooooo very creepy and weird…..
        No, people. No, no, no. Not a good job. Go ruin someone ELSE’S childhood memories, lololol !!

        Liked by 1 person

      • But of course, I get it, a remake offers an artist a chance to look at the material in a different way. Sometimes it even turns out better. And sometimes it is so bad it let’s us appreciate the original a little more. But I suppose it is all generational. I read that the Wizard of Oz is getting a remake. We shall see how that turns out.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Thank you, Michael! Hey, totally agree with you about Time After Time. It would be a great remake, and it’s one of our favorites. In fact, I’m gonna throw that idea at hubby for our dinner movie tonight, haha. I think you’ll enjoy Outlander if you get around to it, too. I haven’t seen all of it but saw a lot of it due to captioning it at work, and they did a good job. You really get drawn in, I think!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. We watched The Deer Hunter last night. Over four decades since I first watched it. I was moist-eyed at the near-tacit love story between De Niro and Streep. Under-acted, fumbled, uncertain, accelerating. There may be hundreds of better love stories but this one moved me. It required time, travel and distance to work.
    If you have never loved with all your heart then it is an absence. Comes with a whole array of pain but maybe those special moments will accompany us to our audience with the Reaper.
    Btw, I’m confused about Outlander. You cite Diana Galbadon, but I’m sure you recommended Gil Adamson’s novel of the same name. Which is a cracking read, replete with love.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. What beautiful commentary on love and a true experience of transformation of the heart. I haven’t seen that movie in just about the same amount of time as you, and it seems like I need to see it again, considering the fact that the only thing I can remember is the sad Christopher Walken story line. I don’t even remember the love story!

    And you are correct about Outlander, except Gil Anderson’s Outlander is actually The Outlander. I’ve been meaning to ask you about it: I know you started out liking it. I hope it held up for you! Admittedly, although I liked the whole book, I did enjoy the first part before she gets to the town a little more than the rest……….

    Liked by 1 person

  11. What a great post. It’s kind of a reverse thing, but I would also suggest Time Traveler’s Wife. Your piece is so timely, if you ask me (as was Valentine’s Day in general). With all the craziness our country and world has been going through I keep thinking about love and wondering how much the people who are so angry and willing to be nuts think about love or feel it for others in their close environment, or at least feel it from people around them. Thanks for this Stacey.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Thank YOU, Mr. Cavanaugh. And for your suggestion! I started Time Traveler’s Wife a while back but stopped for reasons I no longer recall but have always wanted to get back to it, for sure.
    It’s an important question, the one about love, and how it may or may not operate in people’s lives and mindsets. I feel like having empathy has never been a priority (at least in this country). It’s something that would go a long way towards everyone tempering their anger……..

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  13. The words on my tombstone should read “Fuck it! Surely that can’t be the time? You gotta be kidding? It can’t be sodding Monday again! For the love of God! NO! Shit! I didn’t get to any of my hobbies. It’s so darn unfair! That’s it then I’m gonna pour another whisky. Yeah! In you face “TIME”! How do you like those apples, hey?? HEY??”
    The stone mason would take one look at that and just chisels out the words “Fuck it” and you know what?…… It would do.

    Tell you what though. I’m not gonna make a time travel machine to go back and watch “Somewhere in Time (1980)” as even at a young age I remember Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour time travel romance story being so deeply sad. Though it might be memories of my mum crying in her chair watching it and me thinking time travel romance is a sad affair. As I reach for hankies and a shot of whisky then give the middle finger salute to stinking TIME.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Hahaha. I couldn’t have said it better, Mikey, ’cause that’s exactly how I feel about Mondays, extreme profanity included!!!
    Now you’ve amped me up to get off my butt and do a bunch of stuff today that I didn’t have time for yesterday!
    And yeah, Somewhere in Time…. your mom and my dad would have been great Somewhere in Time buddies, ’cause my dad used to cry too, lol !! I might have mentioned to you that it used to be one of our favorite movies to watch together.
    But no hankies or whiskey for me today. I will conquer this day, and all that must be done! (I’ll update you if any of this actually happens, hahaha)……….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lots of stuff gets my ole tear ducts going. Doesn’t have to be sad stuff either. Pride, getting a gang together, bittersweet stuff, Dad trying to protect his family stuff. I get set off at all random things and times. Good this type isn’t ink!, It would be running all over the places. Just thinking about it has set me off… hehe only joking…
      I don’t think I’d read you saying that, but maybe. That’s a real nice memory to treasure with you and your pops.
      Hope you managed to smash out the day in the most productive fashion. 🙂

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  15. I like your premise about the 45 year old female body builder with a rotary cuff injury time traveling, perhaps, into Braveheart territory…how great it would be if Mel Gibson, in the throes of his hyperbolic misogynistic weird Catholic offshoot ParanoidMaleSyndrome, was her time traveling partner!!…Just a thought.
    Brilliant post, Stacey.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Haha. Classic! That would be great.
    I know everyone thinks Mel’s disgusting, and I was so bummed when he “showed his true colors,” but man, what a waste. He’s a really good director! Such self-destruction in the arts, eh?

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  17. Oh…my…..God, Tref.
    The Wizard of Oz?
    Come on!!!! lolololol
    Why not remake Casablanca, then? Or how about The Birds???
    Oh, well. People wouldn’t go into The Biz if they didn’t have egos the size of the universe, right? 🙂

    Like

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