Dreaming of Living the Dream

Plotting and planning, planning the plot – I’m at my least favourite spot in the writing journey. The book is written, the editing means a lot of changes, and this is where I look for shiny things. I’m sure (hopefully) I’m not alone in dreaming of winning the lottery. So, I wrote a book about it – but not the dreamers dream of buying a castle in Scotland, or even of hiring a maid (seriously, I’ve got kids for that). I guess because if I won the lottery, I could buy my dream car – then park it because I can’t see to drive – I wrote about all the pitfalls of winning.

Pitfalls, you say? What pitfalls?

Let me introduce Zoey. Zoey recently won like $21 (.7) million dollars. Unlike the dreaming me, Zoey is freaking out. Like big-time. Her Gran has pretty much raised her and passed on her depression-era upbringing. Don’t buy if you don’t have the cash, don’t rent if you can own (that’s the only borrowing allowed, mortgage) Now Zoey has more money than she knows what to do with – or even fantasize about doing anything with. Her best friend, Jordan (he might become a knight by a different name, but I digress) is a financial planner. He’s like the money guy, the money bags, the brains behind Gran’s “Save, save, save”. Zoey’s scared to even think of buying a new outfit, so ingrained is the ‘fool and their money shall soon part’ mentality.

I know, I know – why worry?

Zoey has a secret – that crush she had on Jordan? Yeah, she never really outgrew it. Only problem is? Jordan’s with Karen. The night she decides to ask Jordan for help with her finances? He lets her know that he ‘might’ be engaged. Long story short, somehow his girlfriend thinks their getting married and Jordan’s a typical nice-guy and doesn’t know quite how to correct her of this notion. Zoey can’t get past the whole ‘you’re getting married’ thing, and Jordan doesn’t want to talk about that – he’s much more interested in helping Zoey set up trusts and interest free savings accounts – you know, boring stuff.

Couldn’t Zoey just hire someone to tell Karen to scrap the save the date cards?

That’s touchy – Zoey hasn’t admitted even to herself how she feels about Jordan. Sure, she admires his butt now and then, but don’t we all admire our friend’s bums? And like Jordan said, Karen’s nice and all, he just doesn’t know yet if he wants (or ever will) to marry her. Before Zoey fully grasps this new development, she’s visited by the past – in the form of Scott, her ex-boyfriend. To be fair, they’d never quite specified that whole sticky exclusive/not exclusive thing. Zoey loved Scott, Scott wasn’t ready for marriage, Zoey ate a lot of ice cream and cried many tears. When his great behind shows up on her doorstep, she can’t help but wonder if he’s ready now.

Money and men? What’s Zoey’s problem?

Zoey’s ho-hum life is suddenly buzzing. People she’d forgotten she’d ever known are knocking on her door. She flees her house in a panic the day the papers released the Ontario Lottery and Gaming (OLG) press release. A car follows her as she runs to Jordan, then she gets a frantic call from Gran – they’re at her house, too. Gran won’t leave her cats, so Jordan must save them all. Scott won’t give up; Karen won’t be left behind. So begins a long and fast journey. Hiding out at a flighty mother’s is only in the works because the flighty mom is bankrupt and needs Zoey’s help. Then there’s her failing RV business, Jerry, and a 1996 Winnebago that needs a run. Introduce the eccentric father – who also happens to be a shrewd and talented estate lawyer (when he’s not up in Huntsville with his hippy friends smoking pot).

Sound like fun? So far, the highlight of the trip is when her mother accidentally sets herself on fire.

While myself, I’d have spent at least a couple of million by now, Zoey’s only spent what other people have forced her to spend. Jordan’s almost apoplectic with worry and anger. While Zoey admires the rear ends, Jordan can’t help but think Scott’s an ass. Jordan, being a financial guru genius, has also figured out that more than their current gang are helping themselves to Zoey’s money. Poor Zoey.

I could tell you more, and someday I will, but I need a favour first. What do you think?

Comment thoughts – good, bad, ugly – please. Advice welcome. Did you want to know more? Did you think Zoey should just quit her worrying and not give a damn about her problems? I’d like to hear your thoughts, pretty please. If I had Zoey’s money, I’d pay you, but I’m broke so all I can offer is eternal gratitude. Thank you, times 21 (.7) million times!