In Praise of Party Girls

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Where did the character of Lorelei come from?  She was inspired by a woman I met at university.  Kimmy lived across the hall from me in East Quad.  She was beautiful: large very dark eyes made bigger by mascara, long mahogany hair flipped back from her face just so, heart-shaped face. She wasn’t very tall, but she was seriously stacked. I wasn’t surprised to find she’d done catalog modeling in high school.

Mostly what I remember about her was her presence.  Kimmy was a light.  She had a huge laugh.  Just by arriving, she made everything more fun.  When she came into a room, every head turned toward her, but she wasn’t obnoxious about it.  She didn’t seem to crave attention; she just accepted it as normal.

Kimmy had a way of singling out people and drawing them into her circle.  During my second day in the dorm, she cornered me as I was about to skulk into my room. She and her roommate were going to play quarters with some other people on the hall so we could all get to know each other.  Why didn’t I come?

Which is how I met Mason, who’s been with me pretty much ever since.  Kim drew him in, too.

Kimmy was always ready for anything.  When Playboy came to town, looking to photograph Girls of the Big 10, she considered it. When she met another girl who had been contacted by a Greek millionaire who was looking for pretty girls to come lounge around on his yacht in their bikinis, she considered it.  I think her curiosity about that lifestyle was matched by a small-town naivety that didn’t really guess what that kind of deal would demand in return.  In consequence, I felt protective of Kimmy.  I didn’t want her trusting nature to lead her into a situation she couldn’t charm her way out of.

Lorelei came directly out of that feeling.  I wanted to explore the possibilities laid out in front of Kimmy, but know that Lorelei would survive them.  I wanted to give Kimmy a happy ending and a boyfriend she wanted just as much as he wanted her.  And I wanted to guarantee she’d never lose her fearlessness or sense of fun.

About Loren Rhoads

I'm the author of 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die and Wish You Were Here: Adventures in Cemetery Travel, as well as a space opera trilogy. I'm also co-author of a series about a succubus and her angel. In addition to blogging at, I blog about my morbid life at
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