Saturday, February 04, 2012

Love at Absolute Zero by Christopher Meeks

A wonderful Mystique day to all and welcome Christopher Meeks and his book Love at Absolute Zero

Christopher Meeks is giving away 2 prize packages tour wide.

Open to US Shipping.

There is the short fiction package, which includes two short story collections and Christopher's produced play "Who Lives?"

The prize pack also contains: a heart coffee mug, deck of cards, nail file, small photo frame, unfinished heart wooden photo frame, and journal.

Package two is the "novel package" which contains 2 signed copies of Christopher's books including Love at Absolute Zero.

The prize pack also contains: a heart coffee mug, deck of cards, nail file, small photo frame, unfinished heart wooden photo frame, and journal.


Thank you, Mila, for having me visit and for launching me on this tour. You’re the first stop. While I write for the Huffington Post, I thought I’d write about something I hadn’t written there: how I came to write my novel, Love At Absolute Zero.

In my fiction, I’ve always been compelled to write what’s important to me. Because relationships can be so enveloping, confusing, energizing and depressing, I love to explore them in story. I’ve never thought of my short stories or novels as “romance” but as “reality.”  We do crazy things for love.

One truth I’ve seen is that all types of people fall in love. Secretaries and CEOs, plumbers and politicians, lawyers and electricians all fall in love. My wife, Ann, a librarian—a lovely soul who swept me off my feet—happened to work in the astrophysics library at Caltech for a few years. I met many brilliant scientists while she was there. All of them were so incredibly smart at their science yet some seemed so amazingly blind to reading body language that I thought it’d be interesting and funny to write about a scientist in love. I’d never read such a contemporary story with a scientist looking for a soul mate.

As I started thinking about writing such a novel, I knew a few things. First, my protagonist would be male because men are so much more confused at love than most women I know, and confusion can be funny. So can someone so brilliant in one thing and blind in another.
Thus, I knew this was going to be a story with humor. I knew it’d take place in the Midwest because that’s where I grew up, and a story about the heart should take place in the heartland.

I knew the story would end up in Denmark because I lived there my junior year abroad, and I love the country. To this day, I still keep in touch with the Danish family that I had lived with. Also, Americans tend to think of Denmark as free-spirited and free love. Free always has a price.

I wanted my protagonist from a Scandinavian heritage, yet he’d know nothing of Scandinavia. I gave him the name of Gunnar Gunderson, which is a nod to my high school science teacher, Daniel Danielson. Gunnar is highly likeable, not because he’s smart but because he’s so earnest and vulnerable.

I would also make Gunnar untraveled as well. He’s always been perfectly happy in Wisconsin, and going to Denmark would make him a fish out of water. What would get him to Denmark? Ah. Love.

I added a time element. After he gets a promotion, he realizes he wants and needs a wife. Yet he’s in a race in his research. He figures with his lab down for three days, he and his two colleagues will use the time to find the love of his life. To do so, they’ll use the scientific method. Science has never disappointed him. Ha! Chaos erupts.

Last came the science. As I researched, I learned Denmark is known for its physics. It has the Niels Bohr Institute, and Danes pour a lot of research money into physics—1.8% of Denmark’s gross domestic product. I didn’t know a lot about physics, but I was willing to learn. With Gunnar a physicist, he could also get an academic job there if I needed that.
I had a lot of fun writing the book, and the science part is only there as background. You don’t need to know any science; what is in the book slides down easily as honey.

What I didn’t know when I started was how many laws of physics relate to the laws of romance. For instance, Newton’s first law of motion is that a body continues in a constant state of velocity unless something acts on it. The moon, for example, will keep circling the earth unless something shoves it off course. And aren’t people the same? They’ll keep going along in their path unless, ah ha, the force of love enters their life. It changes everything.

As Sam Sattler said in his review in Book Chase, It is impossible not to like Gunnar Gunderson. As he progresses from one disaster or near miss to the next, one views him with a mixture of compassion and laughter, but he is such a good-hearted young man that it is impossible not to root for him.”

Love at Absolute Zero came out in September, and three weeks later came a review from Virginia Campbell, who heard about the book on Goodreads. Her review was on a romance website, which threw me. “A romance?” I thought. “This isn’t a romance.” Yet Virginia said, “With some books, you can sense in advance that you are in for a reader's treat, that you will be taken outside your normal reading zone and sent on an involving and entertaining journey through words. Love at Absolute Zero, by Christopher Meeks, is just such a book.

“Hey,” I thought. “It’s a romance!” May you enjoy reading this unusual one.

Love at Absolute Zero
By Christopher Meeks
Publisher: White Whisker Books
Date: September 17, 2011
Genre: Literary Fiction with a Romantic Twist from a male POV
Format: Paper & Kindle, 311 Pages

Love At Absolute Zero is the story of Gunnar Gunderson, a 32-year-old physicist at the University of Wisconsin. The moment he's given tenure at the university, he can only think of one thing: finding a wife. This causes his research to falter. With his two partners, Gunnar is in a race against MIT to create new forms of matter called Bose-Einstein condensates, which exist only near absolute zero. To meet his soul mate within three days--that's what he wants and all time he can carve out--he and his team are using the scientific method, to riotous results.

LOVE AT ABSOLUTE ZERO is listed as a Best Romance on Red Adept Reviews:

It also won a Noble (not Nobel) Award on at

And was selected for Top Ten Fiction 2011 at Book Chase at

Praise for Love at Absolute Zero

"Love at Absolute Zero" is about a physicist who tries to apply the tools of science to finding a soul mate. Specifically, Gunnar Gunderson, a 32-year-old physicist at the University of Wisconsin, gets a promotion, and all he can think of now is finding a wife, causing his research to falter. To meet his soul mate within three days—that’s what he wants and all time he can carve out—he and his team are using the scientific method, to riotous results.

“It is impossible not to like Gunnar Gunderson," says critic Sam Sattler of Book Chase. "As Gunnar progresses from one disaster or near miss to the next, one views him with a mixture of compassion and laughter, but he is such a good-hearted young man that it is impossible not to root for him."

"The magical thing," says reviewer Grady Harp (Top Ten on Amazon) "is that Meeks makes us really care about this strange bright naïve nerd."

"As engaging as it is amusing, Love at Absolute Zero is, ultimately, a heartfelt study of the tension between the head and heart, science and emotion, calculation and chance." - Marc Schuster, Small Press Reviews

"The author hit a home run. It’s a very good story, very well told." - Jim Chambers, Red Adept Reviews

“As if Einstein didn’t struggle hard enough failing at a unified field theory,” says Philip Persinger, author of Do The Math, “Meeks ups the ante by tossing philosophy, anthropology, hashish and love (with a capital L) into the mix. And while we’re so sorry, Uncle Albert, in Love At Absolute Zero, Meeks succeeds absolutely.”

“I've read both of Meeks's short story collections and The Brightest Moon of the Century. I roared through Love at Absolute Zero in a day and a half. Meeks's prose is carefully crafted, his characters compelling and entertaining. I love everything he writes, and I recommend Love at Absolute Zero without reservation." -- author Kevin Gerard (Conor and the Crossworlds)
About the Author:

Christopher Meeks writes short fiction and novels. His book of short stories, The Middle-Aged Man and the Sea earned great reviews including the Los Angeles Times ("poignant and wise") and a blurb in Entertainment Weekly that said, "A collection so stunning that I could not help but move onto the next story." His second collection of short stories, Months and Seasons was published in 2009, and his first novel, The Brightest Moon of the Century appeared in 2009. He has published short fiction in a number of literary journals, including Rosebud, The Clackamas Literary Review, The Southern California Anthology, The Santa Barbara Review, Midday Moon, and Writers' Forum. He now focuses mainly on writing novels.
He teaches English and children's literature at Santa Monica College, children's literature at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, and fiction writing at UCLA Extension.


Sayomay said...

wow that sounds awesome! Im def going to check this out!

Mila Ramos said...

Thank you for dropping by Christopher!