My husband and I have discussed funky chemistry a lot lately as my current WIP involves a ton of it and I want to make sure I get it right. I was trying to describe to him what it was like and he had no clue, hadn't an idea what I was talking about. I guess he's never felt it. I couldn't explain how it's like feeling the other person wanting you. Obviously, we're missing funky chemistry from our relationship. (Note: it's not necessary to have funky chemistry to have an emotionally strong and healthy marriage. In fact, I'm pretty sure it's because we don't have funky chemistry that it works.)
Then, a weeks ago, my husband comes home from the pub and tells me this story. (No, he wasn't imbibing alcohol, he was drinking root beer.) While he and his friends were snarfing pizza, he noticed this woman across the room. Every once in a while he'd catch her staring at him. Now, my husband is hot and when he's wearing his white shirt and slacks I just want to poor butterscotch all over him and eat him up. But, honestly folks he's not Brad Pitt (that's fine for me, I'm no Angelina). Are you sure? I ask. Yes, he assured me. (He wasn't drinking remember!) He finally understood what funky chemistry feels like and it was weird. Having someone find you attractive is quite an ego boost, a thrill, it's intoxicating.
Why do we crave funky chemistry? Or maybe I shouldn't beg the question. Do you crave funky chemistry? I love it in novels, long for it in rom-coms. But I have to ask one more question: What makes funky chemistry? I wrote out two things I think define funky chemistry in novels. Feel free to add your own. There's probably more. But I think this is the core.
1. Hero and Heroine are hyper aware of each other and can sense attraction of the other.
2. They are attracted (not necessarily physically, although some of that, too) to each other but cannot have each other for at least one strong reason.
Part of the funky chemistry is the not having. Once we get what we want, the unmet desire that causes the fire is sated and therefore not as interesting, in my opinion.
How do I know it I get it right in my writing? I'll let my readers be the judge.