Games People Play

By Sharon Clare, author of Love of Her Lives and Rhapsody

RhapsodyIn this day of cyber space, nothing gives me more pleasure than to watch my kids play an old fashioned game. You know the ones, a deck of cards, a board, little game pieces inching toward the winning square.

My kids are now in their twenties. My two daughters are 24 and 26 and my son is 20. I only mention this because the traditional game players are usually my daughters. I don’t know if it’s a gender thing or an age thing, but my son plays video games not board games.

We didn’t own a computer until my son was 2 and back then our computer was basic as far as graphics go, but I remember watching him log on and open his Sesame Street game. I wondered if his brain would be wired differently than my daughters.

A few years later, he had a Game Boy, one of those handheld games. Again I wondered how this game would change his brain. (I was doing a science degree in psychology at the time, hence my fixation on the brain) Unlike the games I grew up with, he was now playing a multi-dimensional game. Parts of his game existed on other planes, worlds his character had to get to, a concept I was never exposed to at his age.

No wonder our kids seem to intuitively understand computers when my generation can be stymied by it. They have computer brains.

Games will evolve, but I imagine they will always be a part of human culture. Games are a way for us to relax, to think creatively, to strategize, to build brain cells.

I think games are good for us, and so does Finn, the mischievous Alfarian elf in my paranormal romance novels. He prefers to use people as his game pieces although he does so for everyone’s greater good or so he believes.

Finn has a good reason for his games. This short excerpt is from my paranormal romance novella Rhapsody and takes place at a tropical resort where Finn explains to his king how his games will benefit both the human and Alfarian realm:

The king let go a snort. “Leave you to play games with the humans?” His gaze traveled over the sea of dancers. “Do you see a miserable face out there, Finn? Humans love their holidays, yet they allow themselves little leisure. No wonder so few find true love. Create. Destroy. Over and over. No one understands them. How could you have insight enough into the ways of these creatures to pair them with their true mates?”

Finn had watched humans for as long as he could remember. He didn’t know why he was entertained by them when most Alfarians viewed them as inconsequential. Centuries ago, he’d started to see the energy that swirled around them, how the color of the energy changed dependent on their thoughts, how love surpassed all energies, even hatred. “I read their minds.”

Shortly after, Finn casts the spell to begin his game. It’s a board game, but not the sort I grew up with. Rhapsody is a game with magical twists and prompts meant to push the players, Isabelle and Jonathan, out of their comfort zones and into each other’s arms. It’s a game of seduction and Finn is master of the board.

You can find more about my books at sharonclare.com.

Do you play games? Please leave a comment and introduce us to your favourite game.

14 thoughts on “Games People Play

  1. I’m with you, Sharon. I love to play games, specifically board and card games. My son and husband like computers games. The most adventurous I get is with the game APPS solitaire and tetris. LOL.

    • Thanks for visiting, Elke. We’ve played Cranium a few times with couples and it’s a hoot. Always something to laugh about in that game. I’m scared of solitaire and tetris. I could so get hooked!

  2. My son was deprived too. He was in high school before I let him have his first video game. Then, I never saw him until he graduated. LOL Now he works for Microsoft. So I guess he was studying in a way.

    • There’s likely truth in that, Lynn. Nothing like playtime to cement those skills into the brain without us noticing.
      I learned most of my limited tech skills in the Second Life virtual world. It was a great learning experience for me, although it’s not a game persay, it still has that addictive quality to it.

  3. I grew up playing Nintendo, but I’ve always enjoyed board games. I have four boys and they play video games way too much. Even my five-year-olds know how to operate a Play Station 3 for Blue Ray movies better than their mother! For 2013, my plan is to do more family game nights and less video game days. Happy release of Rhapsody! Being a big paranormal romance fan, I’m looking forward to reading your book!

    • Thank you, Ashlyn! My daughters mention every once in a while how I wouldn’t let the evil Nintendo into the house when they were little, but it somehow arrived for their brother. I can only admit defeat.

      Isn’t it great having kids to help us with the TV! (I phoned my son once when I couldn’t get a movie to play)

  4. One of my only Christmas disapointments was that I didn’t fit in a game of Yahtzee before the crowds came over for dinner. I didn’t have time to do any reading, either…
    Best of luck with your release, Sharon!

    • Liv, we said the same thing. Our plan was to play a game of euchre, but it never happened. We too had a crowd for dinner. Oh well, maybe New Years. And thank you!

    • Deb, when I first met my hub, he played Risk every Friday night with his friends. Oh my, the testosterone in that room! Good game though :)
      (I’ve been meaning to send you Rhapsody!)

  5. I have read Love of Her Lives and had the honor of previewing Rhapsody. I completely loved them both. Love of Her Lives left me with buckets of tears–happy and sad. And Rhapsody is a quick, delightfully sexy novella. Way to go, Sharon!
    -R.T. Wolfe

  6. Great post Sharon and I am intrigued by Finn and his psycho analysis :-). I love board games too and after our Xmas lunch we played Articulate and then Trivial Pursuit while drinking Japanese plum wine liqueur…the clues and answers became more bizarre as the bottle got lower! I agree, kids are born now with computer brains – any 10 year old knows way more than me about technology. Good luck with the novella, Sharon…going on the TBR list.

    • Thank you, Joanna! I’ve never heard of Articulate. Sounds like a fun game to play while drinking liqueur. I can see the quality of articulation deteriorating. We’ve had a few schnapps at our game table. Things do tend to get sillier as the bottle drains. All in good fun!

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