I wrote this entry as a guest on a fellow writer’s blog. I thought, though, that it was worth reposting on my blog.
A writer is only as good as her last book. Thus, writers have to write and keep writing.
It is also said to write about what you know.
My fourth novel with Crimson Romance, release date to be determined, is close to my heart and my home. “The Right Combination” is rather telling. This romantic suspense involves the romance between two safe and vault technicians, better known as “safecrackers.” They are the legitimate kind. The premise is that someone is killing the country’s legendary safecrackers. Raphael is the F.B.I. agent assigned to investigate only to fall in love with Nalani, a prime suspect.
Okay, why did I decide to write about “safecrackers?” Though I’m not a “safecracker,” I have a rather unusual hobby. My husband and I are safe collectors. Other people collect coins, stamps and saltshakers. Well, we collect antique safes. They are the heavy cast iron models with intricate mechanisms, decorative art and design. We were drawn to them by their fine craftsmanship and beautiful designs.
This hobby began at a house sale where a small, 100-pound safe was for sale. I thought it was cute any my then-boyfriend made an offer and it was ours. We hauled it into his car and set in his library as an end table. An addiction was born. While other couples went on ordinary dates, we hunted for, hauled and stored antique safes. I was the wench with the winch and he mastered the Johnson bar lever.
When we married, we designed and built an addition to our home to accommodate the unique collection. They were delivered from storage to our home on a flatbed truck and positioned with an all-terrain lift vehicle. With a foot thick rebar-enforced concrete floor resting on a solid pier, the floor was designed to hold safes that range from several hundred to 6,000 pounds. Single door, double door, money chests, alphabet and grasshopper locks, cannonball models, parlor safes, hobnails, tombstones, we have them. Models range from the 1840’s to the 1940’s. They line the walls in a 20-foot by 20-foot room with a Victorian theme and furnishings. The adjoining kitchen carries on the “early bank” theme with a vault door leading to the pantry, a teller’s cage over the breakfast bar and a day gate separating the rooms. All in all, we have about forty safes in our home.
No, we do not have gold bullion or bags of cash. Our pantry holds foodstuffs while the safes make great bookshelves and storage. All are locked open.
Our collection has been showcased in publications. We are one of about a dozen safe collectors. I have written about safes for the trade magazine “Safe and Vault Technology.” Thus, it was fitting that I would create a story that revolves around safes and the safe business.