Fact Vs. Fiction and Everything in Between: The Birth of Bestseller, ‘Nobody’s Baby But Mine’
Have you ever fantasized or wondered how your life would have turned out if you had made different decisions years ago? If you have ever contemplated the various ‘what if’ scenarios about love or career opportunity, then you’re not alone. Imagination and daydreaming are all part of our lives, helping us sort our thoughts and ways forward.
This daydreaming path, filled with hope and fear, was exactly how my novel Nobody’s Baby But Mine, came about over two decades ago.
In 1995 my husband and I had been trying for a baby for five years. One morning as I meditated, a story began unraveling in my mind like a movie playing out in full layered scenes. I got my note pad and within an hour I had written—okay, scribbled like a fiend—the whole synopsis. I even captured the protagonist’s very end line.
Authors all over the world will vouch for how rare and gratifying these gifts are when they do come to us. But some things just didn’t feel right. Until this last rewrite which I started in the summer of 2017. This story was so close to my heart and my life that it took twenty-three years for it to get written and published.
Here is a taste about which parts were based on my real experiences, and which were inspired by ‘what if’… for your entertainment.
This gripping, romantic novel delves deep into marriage, family, priorities, sexual temptation at work, possible infertility and ex-lovers who cause further friction in a once amazing marriage.
Has my own husband ever had an affair like JT/James Windsor was tempted to do—even an emotional one?
No. Not that I know of…only kidding! Not only do I feel unconditionally loved by him, my husband is definitely as serious about marriage vows and commitment to monogamy and our love as I am. And after twenty-nine years we still find each other so funny, and miss each other when either of us are away. And as a true romantic I don’t take this for granted.
Have I ever been tempted, I hear you ask?
I admit I know what it’s like to be tempted (read below), and have seen and heard of many scenarios where affairs in the work place have been responsible for breaking up many marriages and families.
For my novel, I cheekily imagined, what if that gorgeous ex-lover came back into my life…Haven’t we all? Have you?
Marriage and Business
Marriage, fairy-tale-like happy-ever-after and having a large family were all part of my dreams. This book’s protagonist, nurturing, caring Rachel is mainly based on me. And like my own husband coming from the British pharmaceutical industry, JT/James works as an executive in a large company, dealing with stressful mergers, redundancies and employees’ crises.
I’ve worked in a real-estate agency, among many other businesses in London, England, and have had a boss just like the pedantic Gareth Robinson-Brown. Only his name was Carlo Sagnay de la Bastida – the bastida part (spelled my way in English should have tipped me off about him!)
Only I couldn’t take it for more than six months.
Infertility and Desperation for a Baby
After five years of trying to get pregnant, like Rachel, I did become obsessed, and everywhere I looked I saw babies and happy families. Yes, I envied many of my friends, but they knew, and sympathized with our situation. But I made Rachel even further devastated. When upon meeting an ex-lover and she has a crazy thought, she realizes how desperate she has become and has to do something different.
In the early 1990’s the specialists called our issue ‘unexplained infertility’ and like the protagonist, Rachel, I did suffer from debilitating endometriosis. But for me, despite the many (excruciating) exploratory examinations, it was all worth it. I didn’t need to have a hysterectomy until my early forties.
Now we have a wonderful twenty-two-year-old daughter, our gift and joy every day.
But many people can never have children, and I wrote this book with them in mind. Because I understand how painful that yearning is. I admit, that just like Joan Wilder at the beginning of “Romancing the Stone” movie, that I found myself crying as I wrote many scenes of the last third of the book.
Like Rachel and her younger sister, Abby, I’ve had a close bond with my sister who’s nearly two years young than me and my brother eight years my junior. I created the ‘maternal’ bond between the sisters in this book inspired by them both. Abby is also based on my own younger self, with a few exaggerated traits for dramatic effect. Abby Valentino stars in her own upcoming novel, Healing Love, for release end of fall 2018.
Close Bosom Friends/BFFs
The protagonist, Rachel and the ‘other’ younger woman, Lori/Lauren, who become close friends under the most surprising circumstances, is based on my own good friendships with my own female friends. Especially when I was going through recurrent breast cancer around twelve years ago. Over the years my few incredible ‘breast’ friends, have proven their worth a thousand-fold. They are my lifeline even now. I combined many of their personalities and habits to create Tina and Lori.
Can women and men stay good friends without being tempted?
From personal experience, absolutely. Over the three decades of our marriage my husband has some female co-workers who admire and respect him, with whom he has worked very closely. As one of his side line businesses in London, Austin used his psychotherapy and hypnosis training to help those around him at work and in their marriages. He’s a true healer and always helps those he works with.
I did become very close friends with one of my boss’s direct reports in British Telecom, when in my late twenties I worked full-time in London. Austin and I were already married and Alan and his wife Marie became one of our best friends. They helped so much, especially emotionally through the hard times of trying unsuccessfully to have a baby. Alan was the second person I phoned with the incredible news of the positive pregnancy test on that fateful day in 1995. Even now, although we live in Ontario Canada, and they are in Woking, Surrey, we’re still in touch with Alan and Marie.
Did I ever meet my own ‘Brandon’ ex-lover?
Yes! His name was Tony, and unlike the real estate property tycoon Brandon is in this novel, Tony owned a family business…wait for it…selling beds in Barnet, near London. I was seven-and-a-half-months pregnant and I went to the large store for a new mattress.
Tony and I did have lunch together.
He asked if I was happy and I told him, “Yes, of course.” But unlike Rachel, who didn’t admit to her husband that she had met an ex, I told Austin about it that evening.
Let me tell you, my very zen-calm, unflappable soul-mate went ballistic! In the nearly six years of marriage I’d never seen him so angry and rightfully indignant!
Only then did I realize that even if I was completely in love with my husband and was glowing with my long-awaited baby growing within me, there are lines one can never cross.
Would I have accepted the idea of Austin seeing an ex? Yes, I trust him…but…
So, although I was ‘sort of’ tempted—to see what Tony was like nearly ten years after I’d broken up with him, and I never saw him again—my love and our marriage vows are the most important bond between me and my husband.
So, now you know why I love to write, and unleash my imagination, just for your entertainment. If you’d like to read Nobody’s Baby But Mine, here are the links:
How about you? Write and tell me about your own temptations and ‘what if’ questions. I’d love to hear from you.
Enjoy, and write to me about your own ‘what if’: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: http://www.gloriasilk.com/
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About Gloria Silk:
Gloria Silk is a USA Today Bestselling Author who loves writing sensuous, uplifting and unforgettable romance and women’s fiction. Her powerful stories are filled with passion and insight, which will take you to various exotic locales around the world. She lives—and happily writes—in Toronto, Canada.
For more about Gloria Silk and her books visit her website