One of my favorite things to do is to revisit my previous books and see if I still enjoy the characters as much as I did. So, in preparation for Ashley’s promo this week, I decided to have a chat with Adric and see what I can learn.
Chautona: Okay, Adric. Let’s start off with the most often asked question–get it out of the way and get the ball rolling at the same time. Why a chaperone? You’re two adults, for cryin’ out loud. It’s not like you couldn’t get around that chaperone thing if you wanted to. So why have it?
Adric: It’s kind of why cars have warning or “check engine” lights. Sure you can keep driving, but should you? A lot of the times, they are minor things–nothing even–but they’re there to remind us that the car could have problems if not checked. That’s what the chaperone is for–to remind us Who we belong to and what He expects–it’s a check against emotions that might tempt us beyond our ability to endure–more of a brake light, you know? A reminder to say, “HEY! Stop!” And, it helps guard against the assumption of impropriety that would occur if we didn’t have someone there.
But it had a secondary and unintentional effect. The chaperones also became counselors. They helped us work through issues. Some of those chaperones became dear friends. Others I hardly knew were there. But still, it was a good thing regardless.
Chautona: What was the worst part of the process?
Adric: Hands down, no privacy. I never considered myself excessively introverted, but at the end of that year, I just wanted to lock myself away in the house or to tramp out into the woods for months. In fact, if it hadn’t been December, I would have spent a couple of weeks on a survival trek just to let my brains and my emotions rest.
Chautona: And the best part?
Adric: Well, I don’t know if I’m supposed to say the obvious. But aside from her, I think it was getting to know myself a little better. That sounds weird, but it’s true. I got to know what I really liked in a woman and what I didn’t. I got to see where I would fail as a husband and what my strengths are. It made me more aware of my impact on others’ lives. That can only be a good thing.
Chautona: Wow. That’s cool. I wrote it and I didn’t get that. Nice. So, is there anyone you would have wanted another month with if you hadn’t met your wife? No names, please.
Adric: There are maybe a couple. It’s hard to tell. I really liked one of the first women, so I could easily see myself trying another month with her, but she’s happy with someone else, so would I be that selfish? Probably. I’m not proud of that. There was also another woman who didn’t stay long. I would probably have wanted to try to make her more comfortable.
Chautona: Would you do it again?
Adric: I don’t know. It was hard, okay? Really hard. Maybe if a few things were set up differently–like four weeks on, two weeks off. Maybe if they set up only three or four girls at a time so I didn’t feel like I was asking these women to set their lives on hold for this thing. I mean, did they meet great guys and not give them a fair chance since they’d signed up for this? I know a couple switched out. I hope they did because they weren’t waiting around for it, you know? For me, I’d probably prefer to do a one-on-one kind of thing through local ministers. Just take them that profile and say, “If you have anyone who would be interested in getting to know me”–or something. I don’t know. Yeah, I probably would, but I think I’d want some changes.
Chautona: So what would you change? The number one thing.
Adric: Counselors that aren’t related to one of the people. I think that was really hard on the women. Tom tried to be unbiased, but let’s face it. He wasn’t. If the women had known that they could really trust the counselors, maybe some of the problems would have been avoided.
Chautona: That makes a lot of sense. Made for some interesting reading, but for reality–yeah. So if churches started a month-long intensive dating thing, you’d change how it was set up? With the women not committing as early?
Adric: Right. That and maybe bring friends into it at first. Meet away from the house, talk, spend a regular date or two just making sure that both people are really committed to it. THEN, perhaps go to the house–and maybe it should be split–two weeks with her family/friends and two with his. Split up the awkwardness.
Chautona: From your book, whose stories should I tell? Obviously, we got one already in Mismatched, but who else? Well, and obviously one in Past Forward/HearthLand.
Adric: *spoilers here!!! Highlight the text to read* Well, definitely Christine and April. But I would like to know whatever happened to Gwen. She still confuses and intrigues both my wife and me.
There you have it! Adric’s take on his life. As for his choices for who should get their own book, I already have April’s in progress in Dead Limb Walking. Christine needs hers too. She’ll be showing how to respect a guy who has strong opinions and high expectations while not losing who she is in the process. WOOT!
Meanwhile, I think Thirty Days Hath… is still .99 today!