Saturday, March 9, 2013

Better Late Than Ever - Snippet #1

I have recently joined an exciting group of authors on goodreads who target their writing to a growing audience of baby boomers.  "Boomer Lit" has been coined as a new genre for their writing. A boomer book can deal with a wide range of interests to boomers, and as with YA, Boomer Lit novels traverse the range of suspense, tragedy, romance, humor and more.  

Each Friday, many of the Boomer Lit authors participate in a Blog Hop by posting snippets from their novels to their blogs.  You can go to Boomer Lit Friday Blog Hop to be directed to each of the author's weekly updates.  Please check back each Friday to this web site for more from me and the other Boomer Lit authors.
  

From Chapter 1 - The Move  

His plan had been years in the making.  Phil Greenfield finally sold his Richmond-based electronics business to a national distributor.He’d spent nearly 15 years building his company from scratch to a multi-million dollar business following a 20-year career at GTE in Tampa. He had no second thoughts about selling it. Phil had a schedule for his Florida retirement, with his 60th birthday as the anticipated finish line. He was sprinting through it three months early.
      Thrice married and thrice divorced, Phil’s career produced sufficient income to keep all parties satisfied, at least currently, still leaving him plenty of cash for his journey south.
       Phil’s only family was an older brother he hadn’t seen in years and a son, John, from his first marriage. John and his wife Tracy lived in Dallas where they both were respected professors at SMU. Careers and distance had kept Phil from seeing them very often, and usually only on “shadow holidays,” a term John coined years ago. John and Tracy would usually be with her parents and siblings on Christmas and Thanksgiving, leaving Phil to see them the week before or after – in the shadow of the real holiday.
       Phil had few ties to Richmond, or to anywhere for that matter. He was keeping his home there as a fallback plan, but hoped not to return. Ideally, he’d eventually sell his Virginia home and find a summer place in the Blue Ridge Mountains or further north, maybe on a lake in Wisconsin or Michigan.
      Two months ago he’d purchased his new home in The Glades, one of the newest retirement communities in central Florida. Phil had chosen everything for the quasi custom-built home, down to the funky glass tile in the guest bath. With the moving van two hours ahead of him, Phil was cruising down I-95 in his E350 Mercedes with his Sirius radio blaring ‘60s rock ‘n roll music.
        Phil had taken advantage of free marketing trips to retirement communities in Florida, Texas, and Arizona over the past few years. Each impressed him with their pristine facilities and seemingly endless amenities.  Oddly, he also liked the robotic bliss of the residents, all walking around with grins on their faces, seemingly oblivious to the troubles of the world. He couldn’t put his finger on why he chose The Glades over the others, but the youthful exuberance exhibited by nearly everyone was definitely a factor.  The social interaction at The Glades seemed more relaxed, yet very well-organized.
        The first night he visited The Glades, Phil was invited to a singles’ mixer for current and prospective residents.  He’d never been in a room with so many attractive, friendly, and surprisingly youthful AARP card-carrying men and women.  A six-foot, silver-haired, charismatic New Englander, Phil had striking 55+ females staking him out quickly. He’d wondered if the complex’s marketing team had a set of women they brought out for the pre-purchase visits and another set who showed up when you moved in. Less than 300 miles from his new home, he was about to find out.

 


Friday, March 8, 2013

Better Late Than Ever -- A Boomer's Perspective

My latest novel, “Better Late Than Ever,” is a fictional depiction of Phil Greenfield, a 60-year-old, recently retired bachelor, and the dangerously misdirected focus on youth Phil discovers behind the private stone walls of a modern retirement community. The residents of this community go to extremes, and pay the price, for attempting to make the final trimester of their lives better, or at least as good, as their preceding years.
 
I don’t know about you, but there are many experiences from my earlier years that I’d just as soon not re-live. . . zits, being picked last in dodge ball, having a rusted out P.O.S. car in high school, 2 a.m. feedings, fighting my way halfway up the corporate ladder. . . just to name a few.  And now that I’ve hit 60 (very recently), I can say there are many aspects of my life that truly make it enjoyable. My kids are grown and doing well, professionally and personally.  I’ve retired from a 30-year career that has afforded me options on how I spend my time. My wife and I are healthy, and we enjoy each other’s company.  And I began writing three years ago, a pursuit I’ve found exciting and rewarding. All in all, it’s a good gig.
 
My novel is not a peek at my retirement future, as some have assumed.  Rather, it depicts the extreme of what I’d fear finding in retirement. I won’t say how it ends for Phil Greenfield, but for me, it IS better late than ever.