Wish You Were Here: What’s Up with the Llamas?

So, let’s talk llamas.

I know, I know. I write romance. I should be introducing you to the hero in my debut novel, Wish You Were Here.

But the llamas — Kuzko, Pacha and Banzai — have have always attracted a bit of attention along the way to publication.

The conversation usually goes like this:

Interested person: So what’s your book about?

Me: It’s about a woman who kisses her fiance’s brother five days before the wedding.

IP: Oh … wow.

Me: Exactly. So the question is: Which is the mistake? The wedding? Or the kiss?

(IP nods in agreement.)

Me: The story is set in Colorado . . . and there are also llamas in it.


The kind of silence that means the person doesn’t know if I’m kidding (Should I laugh? Should I not laugh?) or if I’m crazy (Should I back away s-l-o-w-l-y?) or if I’ve hired a hidden camera crew to record their reaction to the llama announcement (Really, where’s the camera?)

So why llamas?

Because of my husband, Rob. Whenever I got to the “I don’t know what to write next” point, Rob always looked at me and suggested aliens.

And I always said, “I do not write novels with aliens.”

And then one day we were driving through Estes Park and he asked “How about llamas?”

And I laughed and said, “Why not?”

People who know me well know that laughter is my favorite sound. And I believe romance must include laughter.

The llamas in Wish You Were Here?

They’re a four-legged version of comic relief.

In Your Words:  What’s your favorite romantic moment — real life or fictional — that include laughter? I’d love to hear about it.


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  1. April 26, 2012, 5:52 am   /  Reply

    I love that you added llamas to your story:) I’ve seen some here in Texas along with zebras, buffalo and some other creatures that I’m not sure what they are. Always unexpected and that’s the fun in reading a book.

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:12 pm   /  Reply

      The llamas added a whole other unexpected layer to the book, it’s true.

  2. April 26, 2012, 6:19 am   /  Reply

    Llamas do convey a lot of personality, don’t they?
    Funniest romantic moment so far was when I was maybe 19 walking w/ forest ranger boyfriend thru woods holding hands when he held on approaching tree, which swung around facing each other on other side, and scored a surprise kiss. I’ve tucked that into The Bird Lady if that ever comes into print. Neat guy, but he wasn’t a Christian so . . .

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:11 pm   /  Reply

      A ranger boyfriend … so heroic, Dee.

  3. April 26, 2012, 7:44 am   /  Reply

    The very idea of llamas in a romance has piqued my interest! 🙂 My husband and I have four kiddos, including our two year old twin boys, and life is full of humor in the Meyer house – but romance is a little less obvious right now. We are intentional about date night and great communication, but sometimes just standing in the kitchen holding each other goes a long way. When we find ourselves hugging in the middle of the house, inevitably one of our kiddos will come across us and we always get the “ewwww!” comment, but we know they love it! I think displaying your love for your spouse, in front of your children, gives them a deep sense of security. Whenever one of our kids sees us, we’ll grab whichever one it is and we’ll put them between us and we’ll hug and kiss on them. We call it a kissy sandwich. They try to run, but they don’t try hard, and they soak up the kisses with a smile and a giggle. Even though we’ve done it a hundred times, my husband and I still giggle along with them.

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:10 pm   /  Reply

      Ah, Gabrielle, our kiddos did the whole “ewww” thing too whenever my husband and I kissed in front of them. And we have a whole slew of “mom and dad are kissing again” photos taken through the years. It’s kind of a tradition now.
      And I’m a twin — did you know that?

  4. April 26, 2012, 8:35 am   /  Reply

    I SOOOO want to read this book. Great premise. And I can’t wait to read about the llamas.

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:09 pm   /  Reply

      Almost release date, Renee…

  5. April 26, 2012, 9:11 am   /  Reply

    I NEED a llama! How fun! The only time I see one is when the rodeo comes to town. They show llamas along with other things. I think they’re just too cute for words and funny as all get out, which is a perfect fit for romantic comedy!

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:09 pm   /  Reply

      I gotta tell you, Donna, I fell in love with llamas — and llama kisses while I researched WYWH.

  6. April 26, 2012, 9:42 am   /  Reply

    Funny, I didn’t know you accepted comments on your blog. I thought it was closed … not sure why??? Anywho, here I am to comment after reading “I’d love to hear about it.” It’s the day I backed into my husband, wiggled my hips a little and said, “I’m your skinny minny.” He said, “Who calls you that?” I said, “You do.” Big question mark on my face! He turned red and said, “I do, don’t I?” Now, let me say, I’m still a bit concerned he didn’t realize he made up the nickname (and these days a bit concerned I’m not as skinny) but it’s our ongoing joke. Reading back over this, you probably had to be there. : )

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:08 pm   /  Reply

      I’ve been traveling all day, Kim, and just now getting to the comments — or what I call the “conversation.” Yours almost made me laugh out loud as I sit here in the baggage claim area waiting for my ride. And I know the guy sitting nearby is wondering why I’m grinning like a Cheshire cat.
      And I love, love, love comments. For me, blogging is all about the conversation.

  7. April 26, 2012, 9:53 am   /  Reply

    So there is this picture of me and Mike from our wedding that’s a total candid shot. We’re laughing hysterically. To this day, I don’t remember what we were even laughing about. But it’s a great reminder that we started our relationship with laughter, and I want our marriage to be full of it forever.

    • Beth Vogt
      April 26, 2012, 2:06 pm   /  Reply

      Would love to see that photo, Lindsay. (Hint, hint.)

  8. April 26, 2012, 6:17 pm   /  Reply

    Your photos are great! We spent a whole summer researching alpacas–which are like mini llamas. I’m a huge fan now. We traveled all over the midwest from farm to farm and show to show learning about bloodlines and how to care for them–shots, nail trimming, breeding, feeding, etc. We decided NOT to buy a herd, but all the research is stored in my brain for a YA novel centered around these wonderful creatures. I find it interesting to see you’ve put them in your romance novel. I can’t wait to receive it.

  9. April 26, 2012, 8:01 pm   /  Reply

    Ha! That sounds like so much fun! Love your voice and sense of humor, by the way.

  10. April 26, 2012, 9:50 pm   /  Reply

    My funniest romantic experience recently was the sighting of a rather unique new species of bird while on a hike with my hubby. I blogged about it in my post “Romance: It’s for the Birds.”

  11. May 30, 2012, 11:13 pm   /  Reply

    […] One more thing – there are llamas in this book. Yes, llamas. You know you can’t resist why the author included the fuzzy creatures in her story. […]

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