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Inspirational Romance > Would a true story about forbidden love be more inspiring than a novel?

Are romance novel fans interested in true forbidden love stories? There are surprisingly (to me) few memoirs based on true stories of star-crossed lovers, but there is no shortage of romance novels and they dominate the bestseller lists. Why do you think that is? Is it lack of demand, or maybe it's just too hard for people to reveal such stories in their own lives because of how it affects the real people involved---including themselves?

Does knowing that the story is true add to its impact? Life after all, can be stranger than fiction.

For example, my recently released, criticially acclaimed memoir. Dodging Machetes. reads like a torrid novel in its central plot, but it's a true story!

Here's the central plot

Will Lutwick gets an MBA at 22, but soon realizes he and the American corporate world are a horrid mismatch. He joins the Peace Corps and is sent to the Fiji Islands, the quintessential tropical paradise. Will finds himself attracted to prohibited pulchritude when Rani Gupta, a beautiful, rebellious 20-year-old from a traditional Hindu family, begins working in his office. Dating is taboo in Fiji's large Indian community, and an interracial couple would be unprecedented. But Rani and Will soon discover their mutual attraction impossible to resist. Their liaison is clandestine, but word gets out, and a cultural firestorm engulfs Rani's community. The two lovers are under constant threat of attack, and violence ensues. Will must confront his personal demons about courage and commitment, while Rani is treated like a pariah by her people. Will the besieged lovers stay together, or will a hostile world tear them apart?

In addition to its steamy central plot, Dodging Machetes has been met with nothing but stellar reviews from the pros. Consider these excerpts:

"In his beautifully written memoir . . . he shares thoughtful insight into Fiji's exotic history and society . . . Off-the-charts hysterical. An unabashed, candid memoir that continually entertains and educates."
--KIRKUS REVIEWS

“The book is an eye-opening story about love, loss, and discrimination . . . Not only is this an exciting memoir, but it’s a great modern day Romeo and Juliet tale. You can tell that this book was a passionate labor of love. Each page is as addicting as the last, with great emotional elements driving the story . . . This is a great book for those looking for a well-rounded love story with a few laughs and a lot of heart.” Five Stars.
--SAN FRANCISCO BOOK REVIEW

"Lutwick's memoir is a fun romp through the tropics, featuring forbidden love and outrageous cross-cultural miscommunications. Part South Pacific and part adventure comedy, Lutwick's book is all heart. I cheered for him every step of the way."
--JULIA SCHEERES, New York Times bestselling author of her memoir Jesus Land, winner of the Alex and New Visions Nonfiction Book Awards, and A Thousand Lives: The Untold Story of Hope, Deception, and Survival at Jonestown, one of the San Francisco Chronicle's Top 100 Books of 2011 and winner of the Northern California Independent Booksellers Book of the Year Award for Nonfiction.

". . . an entertaining and thought provoking Peace Corps memoir. This is a fine example of what a memoir can be . . . Written with episodic, fast paced chapters it is intriguing. Once I started, I could not stop and yet, found myself thinking about his story and its themes long after the highlighted passages began to fade. If you enjoy a roller-coaster memoir, you'll love Dodging Machetes. It will probably win awards. Five stars."
--PEACE CORPS WORLDWIDE by LAWRENCE F. LIHOSIT, author of ten books including the bible on Peace Corps memoirs, Peace Corps Experience: Write and Publish Your Memoir

For more information about Dodging Machetes, check out the links below:

Will Lutwick
Dodging Machetes Amazon print book link
Dodging Machetes Amazon Kindle book link
Dodging Machetes Facebook page
Will Lutwick’s Website

September 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWill Lutwick

I don't see that many posts here. But I am in process of writing a very erotic book won't get into much details because it's 50 percent fact, 50 percent fiction. First 3 chapters are true facts based on reality, last few will all be where my mind takes me with my imagination.

November 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGothicAngelBabe

Hi GothicAngelBabe,

Thanks for commenting on my article. Best of luck with your erotic book.

Books with mixtures of truth and fiction are still considered fiction, although in a memoir you can do things like change people's names and approximate dialog when you don't remember the exact wording -- as long as you indicate those things in an "Author's Note" within the book. And of course, the author decides what scenes are included and not included.

Memoirs like memories are subjective, though you try to be as true as possible to both the factual and emotional truths, while still writing the most engaging book you can.

November 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterWill Lutwick