I am not a fan of Valentine’s Day. I think it forces people to proclaim their affection for others in rather commercial and materialistic ways. I find it ridiculous that we measure someone’s love by how widely they open their wallet on a single day.
Consider these numbers:
• This year, Americans are expected to spend $19.6 billion on Valentine’s Day.
• In 2018, the average consumer spent $143.56 on Valentine’s Day gifts. (Only $5.50 was spent on pets.)
• Approximately 144 million cards will be exchanged on that day.
That’s a pretty large investment in love, but I want to know I am loved 365 days a year.
So it may seem strange that my latest book, The White House Wedding, is considered a Valentine’s Day romance. However, my book focuses more on the intangibles of love, rather than on a holiday that celebrates love.
For me, all the chocolates, flowers, and jewels in the world won’t compensate for a tender kiss, a gentle hug, a whispered, “I love you.” A man who listens, who comforts, who supports, and who encourages is worth far more than truffles and champagne. He is priceless.
I don’t ask for and I don’t expect baubles and treats on Valentine’s Day. In fact, I don’t even want them. They have no real value. A man who feeds my soul, fills my heart, and stimulates my mind is all I need. You can’t buy love—though some may disagree. Love thrives on intangibles. It’s the million little things that wrap your life and your heart in a blanket of kindness, affection, contentedness, and peace.
I have been in love. I have thought I shared true love. I believed my love was everlasting. Only to have my heart shattered into a million pieces, the illusions held in the mirror of my soul obliterated. The anguish that followed was intense. The despair and denial. The utter hopelessness. Then the anger and the urge for revenge. And, finally the acceptance, the acknowledgment that it was time to move on. I can honestly say gifts or the lack thereof have never played a role in the failure of my relationships. The lack of intangibles did.
Because love isn’t a dozen roses on Valentine’s Day. Love just is.
An Interview with Seelie Kay
Q. Why do you write romance?
Because I am fascinated by the games people play to find and secure a lasting relationship, which is not always love. There’s the chase, the courtship, the falling, the surrender. That’s what I try to capture in my stories.
Q. Do you prefer a certain type of romantic hero?
I adore smart, dashing gentlemen who aren’t afraid to live on the edge. They can be a bad boy, a billionaire, a prince, or a secret agent. That hint of danger just hooks me! However, I also love strong, independent women who aren’t afraid to fight for what they want, even love.
Q. Why did you write The White House Wedding?
It was a bit of a romp, really. I wanted to play off all the craziness that is politics and Washington, D.C. The creatures in the great swamp have become so predictable, a story about the political implications and hijinks of a White House wedding just flowed from my pen. Plus, I always found it interesting that a country that intentionally broke away from the monarchy, goes crazy over royal weddings. Admittedly, I am one of them. I won’t get up at 4 a.m. to watch, like so many of my friends, but I will tape a royal wedding and watch it later. And yes, I did seek teacups from Diana’s nuptials. Unfortunately, none were to be found. At least stateside. I imagine once she dumped Prince Charles, their value went up dramatically! Unfortunately, White House weddings are rare and although we go crazy over royal weddings, I doubt things would proceed so smoothly here. Every aspect of the wedding would be dissected and criticized by the media and political opponents, making the wedding itself a pretty negative experience, which is probably so few occur here.
Q. The characters in this book also appeared in The President’s Daughter?
Yes. The President’s Daughter is where the bride’s—Sarah Lee Pearson—story first began. She had been kidnapped at age five and raised by her nanny into her teen years. It was only after the people who raised her were killed in a paper mill explosion that she began to search for other relatives. A chance meeting with a presidential candidate, Jamisen Powell, leads her search in a new direction and she discovers that he is, in fact, her birth father. This is the continuation of that new relationship.
Q. I imagine in this day and age, being the president’s daughter would not be an altogether positive experience.
(Laughs.) As I observe the impact of the Trump presidency on his children, I am exceptionally happy I was never put in that position. It must be a horrible experience. We live in such negative times, a time when people seem to place high value on their ability to shred reputations and destroy people. All of the current chaos puts us one step away from anarchy. In fact, if you think about it, it would be a perfect time for the Monarchy to attempt to reclaim the colonies. We are so busy fighting each other, I question whether we would band together to fight an outside threat. That’s just sad.
Q. How does your former profession as a lawyer impact your writing?
In two ways. First, my knowledge of the legal system permits me to predict the outcome of certain events. Those events have played a key role in some of my stories. Second, my friends say I am obsessed with justice and I guess that’s true. After 30 years, the law and the legal world are so firmly embedded in my brain that I can’t flush them out. That has become the lens through which I view the world and that naturally guides my characters and plots. Injustice infuriates me, but it also leads me to great stories!
The White House Wedding
When politics interferes with love, can love survive?
Getting married isn’t easy when your father’s the President of the United States! After reluctantly agreeing to a White House wedding, Sarah Lee Pearson, the president’s daughter, finds herself swept into a political maelstrom of unimagined proportions.
The White House staff and the first lady see the wedding as a political event, a way to sweep the president into his next term. Congress is complaining about the collateral costs. The media is delightfully rehashing every aspect of Sarah’s life, even those events that have nothing to do with the impending marriage. And the American public? Visions of an American royal wedding have swept them into a frenzy and vendors take advantage, making a quick buck off of everything from limited edition t-shirts to commemorative teacups.
Sarah and her fiancé, Sam, fight hard to ignore the craziness, but after learning a bounty has been put on their heads by an anti-government militia group, they have to decide whether a White House wedding is indeed worth it. And given all the hurtful controversy, perhaps a better solution is to not get married at all.
Excerpt from The White House Wedding…
“How does my father feel about this?” Sarah asked.
“Your father wants you to do what makes you happy.”
Jamisen Powell entered his Chief of Staff’s office and nodded coldly at Jeremiah. He added, “He would never ask you to do otherwise.”
Sarah smiled and rose to kiss her father on the cheek. “Thanks, Dad. I knew you wouldn’t ask me to be a political stool pigeon.”
Jamie Powell chuckled. “No. That job apparently falls to staff.” He smiled at Sarah. “Look, hopefully, you only get married once. Make a memory that will mean the most to you and Sam. Nothing else matters.” He shook his head, “Maybe Jeremiah will get lucky and your sister, Melissa, will hook some poor sucker before the next election. She and her mother would be overjoyed planning a White House wedding.”
Jeremiah scowled. “I am only thinking about your re-election, Mr. President. Your first term has been a bit rocky. You need a solidifying factor, something that will grab the hearts and minds of the American public and provide a clear path into the next term. Your story, a daughter lost and found after twenty-five years, especially a daughter who just happens to be a stellar human being and a successful international law attorney, won their hearts in the first election.
“Walking that same daughter down the aisle, something you had never dreamed was possible? The ratings alone will rival a royal wedding. No offense, but Melissa’s marriage—if it ever happens—could never have the same impact. People don’t view her in the same light as Sarah. Melissa is a flighty socialite. Her deep-seated sense of entitlement offends. The ratings for her wedding would be nonexistent. But Sarah? She’s the golden child. The American public loves her.”
The president’s sapphire blue eyes, which mirrored Sarah’s, flashed with annoyance. “Be that as it may, I am not about to force either of my daughters into something they don’t want. Sarah has declined your request, and as far as I am concerned, that’s the end of it. You will have to find another solidifying factor, Jer. Surely I have done something that’s re-election worthy!”
Barnes and Noble: TBD
About Seelie Kay
Seelie Kay is a nom de plume for an award-winning writer, editor, and author with more than 30 years of experience in law, journalism, marketing, and public relations. When Seelie writes about love and lust in the legal world, something kinky is bound to happen! In possession of a wicked pen and an overly inquisitive mind, Ms. Kay is the author of multiple works of fiction, including the Kinky Briefs series, the Feisty Lawyers series, The Garage Dweller, A Touchdown to Remember, The President’s Wife, and The President’s Daughter.
When not spinning her kinky tales, Ms. Kay ghostwrites nonfiction for lawyers and other professionals. She resides in a bucolic exurb outside Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she shares a home with her son and enjoys opera, gourmet cooking, organic gardening, and an occasional bottle of red wine.
Ms. Kay is an MS warrior and ruthlessly battles the disease on a daily basis. Her message to those diagnosed with MS: Never give up. You define MS, it does not define you!
Twitter: @SeelieKay https://twitter.com/SeelieKay
Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Seelie-Kay/e/B074RDRWNZ/