Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tell Me, MAYbe...

What is your LEAST favorite part of the writing process, and WHY?  First drafts?  Revisions?  Submissions?

Mine is definitely that first draft.  Getting something down that I feel even remotely confident about has been a chore lately...and it's something I'm working on each day! 

How hard is it to bare your soul??


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

How I Write

I'm a little behind...(7 posts, according to someone), but I have a good excuse!  I'm sick. And I've been resting!  So there.

Anyway, in case you're not caught up on what's happening here lately, I'm participating in the Blog Me MAYbe blogfest happening around the blogosphere, which you can check out by clicking on the linky in the sidebar.
Tuesdays are always a good time because I can talk about myself, and let's be honest-who doesn't like to talk about how awesome they are??  ;)

I've been trying to be more disciplined in my writing schedule, which has a strict 8:30-10:30 time slot in my day, after work and the gym.


What actually happens between the time when inspiration strikes and words are recorded on the frighteningly empty Word document is this:

Sitting in traffic....thinking about nothing but how much I hate traffic...

Hey, I should write a story about TRAFFIC!  I KNOW all about traffic, and there are so many story possibilities...

Spend the next week staring at pictures of traffic on Pinterest and We Heart It while the plotline forms in my brain...

Wouldn't it be a great idea if traffic didn't want to BE traffic anymore and instead wanted to try to be an open road??

Spend the next week downloading and Google stalking songs about traffic and the open road....

I need a really good makeout scene.

Spend the next two days searching for pictures of people making out in traffic or on the open road...

Stare at the blank computer screen, fingers poised.

Oh, hey, someone posted a video on my Facebook wall!  Let's watch.

Oh, hey, I forgot to find tickets to that one show...

Oh, hey, I need a new shirt for that night at the bar that's like every other night at the bar. 

I'm STARVING.  Let's make some popcorn.

Wine!  Why didn't I buy wine?  Wine always helps me write. 

Coffee sounds amazing.  Hey, Dunkin, how's it going?

The new Vampire Diaries is on???  Hold up, skipping is NOT an option.

Spend the next week daydreaming about traffic while sitting in traffic.

Word document?  Blank.


Unfortunately, this is how it's been lately.

I need some inspiration, people!  I guess I should go find me some wine...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Of Course There's Harry Potter

In today's edition of 'Let's Talk About Me', I thought I'd share with you the top 5 books and movies which help push me to be the best writer I can be.  In no particular order:


1. Harry Potter 1-7.  I was forced to read The Sorcerer's Stone for my Children's Lit class in college(at the time I was very anti-fantasy)and I canNOT thank that professor enough.  No book(or series)has inspired me more. 

2.  A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens.  Also, Great Expectations!  They were the first classic novels I fell in love with and the reason my obsession with all things England began. 

3.  The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  Okay, this was my first stab at fantasy, so I guess I can't say I hated it...I adored this book as a child and today the movies are part of my beloved collection(And Ben Barnes as Prince Caspian??  Yes please.).

4. Twilight.  Just the first book.  And yes, I realize the writing wasn't all that stellar, but the passion was.  And I would love to create a characters with as much passion as this crew has!

5.  Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins.  A fellow blogger, I knew I liked Stephanie and her writing long before she was published, and she never disappoints.  Her characters are real and charming, and the setting is just as much a character as the people are.  She is a huge inspiration to me. 


1.  Ever After.  I'm a sucker for a good fairy tale, and the Cinderella in this story was strong and determined.  One of my all time favorite movies!

2.  Alice In Wonderland.  When this movie ended, I wanted nothing more than to run home(or back to my hotel room, as it was)and spend every waking moment in front of my computer, creating my own masterpiece.  If you haven't seen it, you should.  Every second was magical.

3.  Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium.  Don't laugh.  This movie made me believe.  It also possessed one of the single greatest quotes I have ever heard:  'Your life is an occasion. Rise to it.'  Well said, Mr. Magorium.

4.  Penelope.  A curse, a lesson, and true love(both self and James McEvoy.  Come on, now.). 

5.  Harry Potter 1-7.  Did you really think these wouldn't be on this list???  Speaks for itself. 

Which books and movies inspire you the most?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Overcoming Fear

"You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you think you cannot do."
- Eleanor Roosevelt

I had some trouble coming up with a topic for today's post...not because I don't have anything writing related to talk about, but because I just don't know where I stand with my writing at the moment.

It took a while to realize what my issue is, and then it hit me...fear.  I've discussed it before and received incredible encouragement from everyone here, but the fact remains:  I am afraid.

I don't doubt my writing-sometimes even the bad days read pretty well when I go back with a fresh eye.  It's more of an 'I'm terrified of the rest of the world reading into my soul' type thing.  I'm afraid of that rejection.

I've had something on my mind for months now, but I knew it would require action on my part in order for anything to come of it.  But as outgoing as I am, there are just some things I can never make myself do because I'm too afraid of the outcome.  In order to protect myself from the worst, I push away any hope for the best.

Two weeks ago, I made a decision.  Life is way too short to be so afraid of the possibility of happiness.  This past Friday, I shoved my fear aside, acted before I could talk myself out of it...and succeeded.  I haven't felt so amazing in YEARS.  I can't stop smiling! 

In my opinion, writing should be this way, too.  What do I have to fear?  If I keep holding myself back, I will never know if I have what it takes to conquer such a silly little thing(in the big scheme of things).
This must change. 
From here on out, I vow to be more confident in my writing and in myself.  There is nothing to fear in a blank page, a full imagination, and a story to tell. 
See that word count on the right side of the screen?  That number is going to go up.  And someday, you will all get to see into my soul...

What do you have to do in order to overcome your fears? 

Friday, May 4, 2012

MAY I Share Something Funny?

Thanks for the comments on yesterday's post about my sister!  It must have been good because she received a phone call for her first special order!
Not only does this mean she's making money doing something she loves, it also means I get to tag along on a road trip to find the subject of the assignment! 

Today, I'm going to share a few things that crack me up.  I'm easily amused, so I hope you're not rolling your eyes *too* much at what I'm going to post!

I don't know about you, but I cannot stop laughing everytime I read this

I love this chick.  And this video?  YES.  Wait, only me??

And from my Pinterest...

This was the funnest post.  I laughed.  A lot.


Thursday, May 3, 2012

MAY I Tell You Something About Someone Else?

In which I gush about the people who mean the most to me!  There are so many people I'd love to praise, but I'm going to start with one special person(who has nothing to do with writing but a lot to do with inspiration).

Meet Jacki Kuiken, my little sister:

Jacki is a true artist.  She's a photographer, a floral designer, a sketch artist, and so much more.  She's also my best friend, and I want nothing but happiness and success for her! 

Plus I know that someday she'll enjoy reading my books, so she's way more awesome than I'm letting on.  ;)

Anyway...I posted one of her photos on my Monday post, but I'd like to link back to her website here so you can all see this beautiful world through her talented eyes. 

If you're not in the mood to check it out, maybe this will convince you:

See??  Girl's got talent.  Don't these make you want to go outside and find your own inspiration? 

Go ahead, boost her ego!  :)

I hope you enjoyed meeting Jacki...I'm happy to introduce her!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

MAY I Ask Something About You?

Happy Wednesday, everyone! 

Today, I get to ask YOU some questions!

Tell me, fellow writers...

What are you writing right now and why?  Did something inspire you?  Have you been trying to get a certain story down on paper for some time now?  Why did you choose to write this particular story?

I'd love to know!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

MAY I Tell You Something About Myself?

Welp.  I'm already behind!  Leave it to me to post a Monday post on a Tuesday lol.

Since it's TUESDAY, I'll have to catch up and tell you all some things about myself.  I'm going to copycat some other bloggers out there and do an A-Z post, since I missed out on April's blogfest because I'm lazy.  And old.  (24 is old.)
(I'm not really 24.)

A is for age: HA!  As I said...I'm not 24.  I am, in fact, 25.  Plus 6.  But still awesome.

B is for breakfast today: I suck at breakfast.  Who has time for breakfast?  I'm running out the door and hoping that I remembered to put on my pants.  Seriously.

C is for currently craving: The avocado, fresh mozzarella cheese, and tomato salad I made for my lunch tomorrow.  YUM.

D is for dinner tonight: Popcorn and wine in my bed.  Yup.

E is for favorite type of exercise: Running and dancing!  I lose myself in a good run just as much as I do in my writing, if not more.  And dancing is so. Much. Fun.

F is for an irrational fear:  Being raped and/or murdered everywhere.  Outside.  In my bedroom.  In the shower.  It's a problem.  I read too much.

G is for gross food: Peas. Hork

H is for hometown: Born and raised in Calumet City, Illinois.  I still love going back even though most of it has changed for the worse...

I is for something important: My friends and family.  I do not want to know the person I would be without them.

J is for current favorite jam: Say It Again by Mariah McManus

I absolutely adore this song and this video.  Also, it makes me think of someone....

K is for kids: Um...nope?  Although I've made the decision that if I'm still single by the time I'm 35, I'm doing it on my own.  Not afraid.  I'll be all Gilmore Girl.  ;)

L is for current location: My bed.  Which is also my office.  Rad. 

M is for the most recent way you spent money: Paying too much for gas! 

N is for something you need: MONEY.  Like, lots of it.  Money might not buy happiness, but it does buy books and that's pretty much the same thing.  Wait a sec....have I stolen that from Pinterest??  Probably.

O is for occupation: Writer.  First and foremost.  But during the day I do billing for a Honda dealership.  Bah.

P is for pet peeve: Poor grammar.  Poor spelling.  People who chew with their mouths open and chomp on potato chips.  Traffic.  People who complain and don't do anything to rectify their situation.  Men.  ;)  Just kidding...kind of.

Q is for a quote: "Don't wait, just let your heart speak.  Don't waste another heartbeat.  Because you'll never know, until you let it out.  Say it now"  -The Afters

R is for random fact about you: I'm a lefty.  Which makes life extremely difficult.  And people complain.

S is for favorite healthy snack: Almonds!  Raw almonds.  Holy crap, they are delicious!

T is for favorite treat: Peanut Butter Cup Perfection ice cream from Coldstone.  Drool...

U is for something that makes you unique: Oh, man.  Unique doesn't begin to describe me.  Where do I begin?...

V is for favorite vegetable: Spinach!  It used to make me gag as a child.  Now I luuuurrrrve it.

W is for today’s workout: Running around the dealership trying to get men to fix their stupid mistakes. For 13 hours. 

X is for X-rays you’ve had: After my car accident when I was 16.  Not my best night.

Y is for yesterday’s highlight: Driving past Denny's...this has no meaning to any of you.  ;)  Also, going to bed. Because I needed it so.

I don't know what happened to Z.

Hey hey hey, it's MAY!

...And today starts the Blog Me MAYbe blogfest!  Click on the linky over there ----> to check out what it's all about and get to know some amazing writers!

Basically, I have to blog every single (week)day for the entire month of May.  Yikes!  I'm giving it my best shot, so I hope you're ready!  :)

Mondays are writing related, so I'll just come right out and say it:

I need to do better.
I've used the 'I'm too exhausted' excuse for almost two months now, since I started my new job.  And yes, it's very true(I just got home from a 15 hour day and my eyeballs are floating somewhere up around my ceiling lights...), but it seems to me that this isn't going to change anytime soon.
Therefore, I must change in order to make it work.

All around the blogosphere, on Twitter, and even on Facebook, my writing friends are sharing their success stories and I soak them in, envious to the tips of my toes, and SO SO proud of the things they are all accomplishing.  I know that I will join them one day, hopefully soon, but I need to push myself to get it done.
And I will! 

Writing is my world; it is the one constant in my life, the only thing that makes me feel like ME, no matter what else is happening.
Creating life from a spark of my imagination is the only true magic I've ever known, and I know I'm blessed to have been given this gift.
These characters deserve a chance to tell their stories and they need me to write them down.
How do I argue with that? 

Starting next Monday, I hope to share with you my journey through my current projects and I hope you enjoy walking along with me! Everything is better with friends.

Are any of you struggling with making time to write lately?  Tell me, please!  Perhaps we can struggle together.  :)

Here's to a blog-filled May!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

I Have Nothing To Say

A couple weeks ago, a friend so kindly reminded me that it had been a while since I last posted.
I know.

I know.

And here I am, with nothing to say because holy balls, I am exhausted.

I missed a blog fest that I was very much looking forward to participating in because it was about crushes which meant I would be able to write about boys and my crushes and God knows I've had more than my share of those in this lifetime. 
But alas...I suck.

Here's what's been going on.

I got a job.


This is huge mainly because I've been unemployed for a year now, and I'm very poor.  And now?  I'm still poor but employed and managing to pay my rent so that I don't have to move into a refrigerator box.
Here's what's awesome about my job:

1. I'm allowed to say the F word as often and as loudly as I like.  Not only is this allowed, it is encouraged and cheered.  And I?  Have a potty mouth.  Yay for the F word!

2. The owner sought me out to meet me and called me one of his daughters.  This has never happened to me before.  This is not what I am used to.  This is awesome.

3.  Boys.  They are everywhere, and they dominate the business.  Which is awesome since pretty much the only daily access to boys I've had in a year has been on TV shows and let's face it-Damon and Stefan probably won't be showing up at my door anytime soon.

Hey, look!  I got to talk about boys after all!  ;)

Things that suck about my job:

1.  Traffic.  TRAFFIC.  To and from, an hour each way at least.  And I'm only twenty minutes away!

Let me tell you about traffic.  Traffic is a lot like football.  Something that should take ten minutes is guaranteed to turn into a full hour.  But while football can sometimes be edge-of-your-seat, the only exciting part of my drive is that dude over there, analyzing the booger he just picked.  Who picks their nose in traffic??  People can see you, even if you're not looking.  Duh.

Oh, and you, the asshat behind me.  I'd feel much better if I could see your freaking headlights so I know they're not about to ram up my ass.

Then there's those people who see a fender bender and get all 'OMG, did you SEE the size of that dent?  It's like the size of my PINKIE finger!  Let's slow down so we can get a better look because by golly, it's the apocalypse'.

And the fender benders happen because of the asshats who stop so close to the car in front of them that their headlights are no longer visible. 

These people probably stop too close because they're too busy analyzing their own snot rockets to realize they should hit the brakes before their four door sedan becomes an accordian.

Needless to say, my Happy Friday mood tends to sour the second I pull onto the on-ramp.

And that is the worst thing about my job.

Then I come home, change for the gym, go sweat out my bad mood for about an hour and a half, shower off the sweat from said bad mood, scarf down a hastily made dinner, and make it to my laptop about five minutes before I pass out.

How did I have a job and function before???

Now let's add in the time I need to get some writing done so that someday I no longer have to sit in traffic and watch other people eat their nose greens.


Once upon a time...

Apologies for this post about nonsense.  Yay F word!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

On Reading, Writing, and Talking About Myself

Okay, everyone.
I don't do book reviews, but I DO pimp out phenomenal reads and try to convince you to read them!

Over the past month, I've read several books, but only a couple have stuck out in my mind.  Read them.  Love them. 

Last week, I posted an excerpt from Saving June by Hannah Harrington.  It was for the Is It Getting Hot In Here blogfest, but that is not the reason I fell in love with the story.  If you enjoy a good love story, this is it, sure.  But if you fall for a raw, honest tale of life, love, and loss, you will love this book as much as I did. 

No one likes cancer.  To hear of it, live with it, read about it...anything.  I'm no different.  I lost a grandmother to it.  Nothing about cancer is good.  But this book?  This book made me see it differently.  It made me see the strength in the victims, in the hope of survivors.  I can't remember the last time a book touched me so deeply, made me see the world more clearly.  This is not a sad story of death.  This is an uplifting tale of spirit and life.  Taking advantage of our time on this beautiful Earth.  And understanding that even though life ends too soon, what we make of our time here is what truly matters the most.  Also, John Green is full of awesomesauce. 

I promise these books won't disappoint!  They will, however, bring out the fanboy/girl in you.  You've been warned.

About writing...
I've been doing so well with my writing lately, it's scary.  Jumping back and forth between two stories has been easy and enjoyable.  And pushes me much closer to my goal:  to be out on submission by the end of this year!  I vow to myself and to you all, my lovely readers:  this is my year!  :)

And about myself...

I was tagged to reveal six facts about myself by the unbelievably talented Isabel Bandeira.  She has a way with words, and I'm so happy I discovered her blog.  This lady is going places!  Check out her blog.  I know you'll adore her as much as I do.

As for me, and I'm sure you're all on the edges of your seats waiting to hear about what I could possibly say next to make you love me more ;), here's six facts about me that (I hope) I haven't revealed yet.

1.  This is the reason I have difficulties writing most nights:

Oh, hai!  I iz fluffy and petable. I stealz food and important things. 

His name is Dexter, and he is also the reason there is a packaged string cheese probably sloppily half-devoured under someone's bed or the couch or something this evening...but he's also how I stay warm in bed when our furnace inexplicably craps out mid-winter(or whatever this is in Chicago).  I love him, but he gives me serious anxiety sometimes.  The other cat has a weird fetish in which she sucks on my clothing...while I'm wearing them.  I don't get it, it kind of freaks me out, but I can't help but love her and her girly meows and wide eyes.

2.  Someone recently asked me what my life's theme song would be and I responded with six of them:
Brand New Day by Trevor Hall
Have a Little Faith In Me by Joe Cocker
This Is Your Life by Switchfoot
Best Days by Graham Colton
Sooner or Later by Mat Kearney
Tonight by Tobymac

Because how can you choose just one??

3.  I began writing my bucket list.  Said list includes things such as 'Meet Josh Groban' and 'Buy a puppy'.  Because my goals in life are simple and easily satisfied.  If only Josh Groban would give me ONE SECOND of his time, he could buy me a puppy and we'd live happily ever after!!!!
(I'm not a stalker)
(I might be kind of a stalker)
(One of you has to have a Josh connection, right?  RIGHT??)

4.   On a more serious note, I lost my job again.  The bakery I worked for went out of business and now I'm on the hunt again.  The bright side is that the bakery proved to me how much I still want to open my own and taught me what NOT to do to run a successful business.  I am grateful for the opportunity to work there and to learn SO much.  Not to mention, it was such fun!  I will miss it.

5.  I choose candle scents based on what I'm writing at the time.  For example, if I'm writing a beach story, I'll choose summery scents that remind me of the ocean.  For a winter story, I choose Christmas and baking scents, anything that gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling.  It puts me in the mood and gets the creative juices flowing.

6.  If I could move anywhere in the States, it would be to Georgia.  My friends down there are nothing short of family and if I had the nerve to leave my family, I would be there in a heartbeat.  However, if I ever had the opportunity to move to England, no one could stop me.  Nothing, no one, no how, no way.  I would be there, and I would love it.  And I bet Josh Groban would love it with me.  ;)  Just kidding!  Kinda...

Now, I'm supposed to tag others to reveal six facts about themselves, but I would honestly rather just link you to their amazing blogs.  They have all touched my life in some way or another, and I hope they touch yours, too.

Candace Ganger-Because she is beautiful and inspiring.
Julie Dao-Because her prose is melodic and haunting, and someday the whole world will know.
Isabel Bandeira-She tagged me for this post, and everyone should see what this woman is made of.  Mad skills, people.  Amazing.
Carolina Valdez Miller-Read her blog.  Enough said.

And that's that!  Should these fellow bloggers choose to participate, excellent!  If not, I am just happy to pass their greatness along.

A special shout-out to my newest followers:  Thanks for the follow!  You're the reason I'm here...glad to meet you!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Is It Getting Hot In Here??

Happy Valentine's Day!  A day for being in love, for hating love...and for all sorts of love in between.

I'm late in posting, but I didn't want to miss out on the fun!  Today is the Is It Getting Hot In Here Blog Hop hosted by Cassie Mae.  Hop over to her page to check out the entries!
I'm cheating this year because I didn't have time to write my own scene...instead I'm posting the kiss scene from Saving June by Hannah Harrington.  I adored this book, and you should all read it!  :)


The night air is clear and cool and silent, save for the bugs humming around the buttery-yellow lamps overhead, a car's wheels sounding against pavement as it guns out of the parking lot.  And beyond that, faint echoes of the ocean tide.

'You can't hold yourself responsible for what she did,' Jake says, so softly I barely hear him.  'There's nothing you could have done.  Nothing.'

I shake my head.  'You don't know that.'

'Come on, Harper.  You're smarter than that.  It was her choice.  Hers, not yours.'

I feel like he's lying, except he's never lied before, he never sugarcoats anything, so why would he start now?  And if he's right, it doesn't really change anything.  It may not be my fault, but she's still gone, she still chose to leave.  I'll still always wonder why I wasn't enough.

My eyes water, my breath catching in dry not-quite sobs.  Jake moves toward me, but I wave him off.
'I'm fine,' I insist, swallowing hard, trying to shove the emotion down again.

He says, 'You're not fine.  And that's okay.  No one is expecting you to be okay right now.'

'It doesn't matter, okay?'  I whisper.  'How I am-it's not important.  It doesn't matter.'

One of his hands falls across the inside of my knee.  I turn my head to see his face, hovering inches from mine.  His expression is so open and understanding and sympathetic that my throat closes up just looking at it.

He leans close and says, 'It matters to me,' right against my mouth, and then kisses me like he means it.

I've thought about what it'd be like to kiss Jake over the past few days, way more than I'd care to admit.  But I don't even have time to register the firm press of his lips against mine, without breath, before he pulls back.  His face freezes, eyes wide with oh shit written across them.  Maybe I'd be offended if I wasn't so sure that my own expression matches his perfectly.

'I shouldn't have done that,' he blurts out.  'I'm an idiot.'

'Yeah,' I agree, 'you really are.'

I grab the collar of his shirt and tug him back to me.

........And then it gets better.  ;)

I hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine's Day!  I'm off to check out the rest of the entries....

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

On Proving Yourself

I took my friend out to lunch yesterday afternoon.  No big deal, just the lunch special at Applebees, but she was very upset about something and I wanted to treat her.

As we were leaving the restaurant, we passed the woman who fired me and the owner of the company I had been fired from.  I turned and smiled, calling out a friendly hello.  Even though I had been fired, I understood the need to do so.  I still don't understand why the person who created the situation has yet to be punished, but that's no longer my problem.  I am a bigger person, and I will be okay.

But it got me thinking...since I lost my job last April, I have been excluded from any function these people have been invited to-just in case they were to show.  As though I was the bad person, and my presence would make for an uncomfortable situation.  I am not a hateful person.  I've had nothing but respect for my former employers.  I even like them, to this day. 

Clearly, they don't feel the same way. 

I'm not one to handle judgement well.  If someone tells me I can't, I show them I can.  Since losing my job, I've been bombarded with people asking if I'm 'okay'.  They are concerned I'm not doing well.
I'll say this:  I'm not making the money I used to.  I don't have a steady income, and I'm wondering how I'm going to make my next car payment.  But don't you dare tell me I can't make it in this world in spite of that fact.

I'm a hard worker, and I know what it's going to take to make it doing what I love.  And I will, someday. 
Someday, I will prove to everyone that I have what it takes.  That I can do it, whether they believe in me or not.
The past couple of years have been overflowing with people who seem set out to get me.  They wait for my failure.  They want to see me fall.
But I know the day will come when I can look at those people, the ones who lied to me, who betrayed me, who tried to ruin me, and I will show them how wrong they were.

I hate to think that part of why I write is to prove others wrong.  But it is.  Even though I'm not getting paid for it YET, I'm doing exactly what I love to do.  And I WILL make it.  I will be the one who is happy, while they feed on the misery of others.

Has anyone ever told you you're not good enough to do what you love to do?  Have you ever proven them wrong? 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Much Needed...

As I'm sitting in my bed(yes, it's 1 PM, no, I don't care, have you seen the snow and wind outside????  Okay then), stalking Twitter and considering when I should suck it up and just START WRITING, damn it...I saw this, retweeted by Roni Loren:

And I read it.  The whoooooole thing.  And I laughed and I pondered and really wished it weren't snowing so I could go for some Dunkin Donuts coffee so that I could come back home, get under the covers, and WRITE.

But it is snowing, I am freezing, the coffee will have to wait. 

The good news is that this wonderful post helped me to say STFU to my pathetic excuses and just start writing.
So I am!  I hope everyone is having a wonderful, inspired day! 

Monday, January 2, 2012

The No Kiss Blogfest!!!

Hey, everyone!  Sorry I'm a little late.  I've been waiting for this day since January 3rd of LAST year!  Y'all need to head over and check out all of the entries in the No Kiss Blogfest, hosted annually by Frankie.  It's something you don't want to miss!  :)

Here's mine...a scene from a little story about revenge and what can happen when someone goes terribly wrong...very rough, but I'm excited about it!

Ella checked the towering grandfather clock for what seemed like the twenty-seven hundredth time that evening, realizing she had only an hour left to sneak away from the ball without anyone noticing.

          Of course, that was proving impossible considering her Cinderella-like entrance.  Brent hadn’t taken his eyes off of her once, even while dancing with the most beautiful women in attendance.

          The urge to stay in the ballroom and pretend this magical life was hers to enjoy forever was too tempting, and Ella took a deep breath before sidestepping out the double doors.  She hoped no one saw her leave, especially Brent.  She had a feeling he would make this difficult for her.

          The main study was down the first hall on her right, and she half-jogged, half-glided, kicking off her heels as she went.  They were too much of a hindrance and way too loud. 

          Glancing over her shoulder, Ella leaned into the heavy door, twisted the knob, and disappeared into the silent blackness.

          The room was chilled, lack of life evident.  When she was a child, she spent plenty of free time flipping through the pages of her father’s thick novels while he pored over business paperwork.  Now the only movement she ever witnessed in here happened when she came in to clean the nonexistent dirt.  And, of course, when her stepmother interviewed her.

          Ella swept across the room, holding her dress up off the floor to avoid tripping.  The bookcases appeared exactly the same as before, nothing more, nothing less.  She ducked down behind the desk and tried the center drawer. 


          Three drawers, two shallow and one deep file drawer, were on the right.  She tried each one, failing at opening any of them.

          “Damn,” she swore, smacking an open palm against the glossy top.  She should have thought this through.  Of course the things to be hidden would be secure from outside tampering. 

          “Cinderella only left behind one slipper, you know.”

          Ella spun around, her dress catching on the rolling desk chair and tearing with a horrible ripping sound. 

          Brent stood in the doorway, leaning against the frame, her heels dangling from an index finger.  Ella couldn’t see his face in the dark, but she could imagine the fire shooting through his eyes, a stranger rummaging through his home like a regular klepto.

          “I was looking for…the bathroom,” Ella improvised.

          “Behind the desk?”  He wasn’t convinced, and stepped into the room, tossing the shoes onto an armchair.  He moved slowly, arms crossed over his chest.

          His features came into focus, but they weren’t angry as she expected. Rather, they gave away nothing but intrigue, a small smile turning up the sides of his mouth.

          “Tissue,” Ella said, yanking one from the box on the corner of the desk.  She was never more thankful for her stepmother’s idea of a masque to disguise eligible women from her son.  If he had any idea who she was, it was her neck.  All of her hard work would have been in vain.

          “Ah.  I see.”  It was obvious he didn’t believe her, but Brent said nothing to suggest it.  He just kept moving closer, now hooking his thumbs in his pockets. 

          Ella stepped backwards, panic making flight impossible.  “I didn’t mean to make you suspicious.”  She hit the corner of the room, a few books toppling on the shelves behind her.  She ignored them, oblivious to everything but the close proximity between her and the man who could ruin her.

          “I know you, don’t I?”

          She shook her head, a furious move that rattled her brain and made her see stars.  “No, I don’t think so.”

          “Yes.  I do.  I recognize your eyes.”  Brent was near enough that he could see them, although she was certain the color was indeterminable in the lack of light.  Still, she was thankful she chose to leave her disguising brown contacts in her bedroom.  Turquoise was not the color anyone would expect in her eyes.

          “Do you know that you’ve been the talk of the party?”  Brent grinned, his pearly whites visible, lighting up the space.

          Ella flushed.  “Don’t you mean the talk of your engagement party?”  She couldn’t help the stab.  This wasn’t the same party thrown every year.  Her stepmother had made a mockery of the event.

          Brent chuckled.  “I get the feeling you’re rather dissatisfied.  I’m not what you expected?”

          What she expected?  He was nothing she’d ever expected.  She’d expected, or maybe wanted, for him to be a disgusting excuse for a human being.  He was supposed to be snide and cruel, someone she’d enjoy humiliating. 

          Granted, he was rather sarcastic, and he definitely knew how hot he was, but cruel was something she knew he was not.  And tonight, in his dark gray suit, baby blue shirt, and white tie, his ocean eyes were visible across the room.  His shaggy dark hair was unkempt and probably a thorn in his stepmother’s side, but it made him that much more appealing.  He stood with confidence but made it clear he wasn’t interested in a giggling girly girl who would feed his ego.  And he kept saying things like, ‘Right, then’, and, ‘Piss it’, when he was angry. 

          She never expected a guy like him to be so charming and sexy.  It had to be the British thing.

          Still, she had no idea how to answer that question. 

          “I’m waiting,” Brent said.  One more step and he would be nose to nose with her.

          Ella lifted her chin, the sequins on her silver mask catching the moonlight and half-blinding her.  “I expected no less than what the evening delivered,” she finally answered.  There.  It revealed nothing, yet sounded insulting.  She was proud of herself.

          But Brent’s smile simply widened.  Was he laughing at her?

          Without her realizing it, the tips of his shoes touched the tips of her toes and he tilted his head down, lips centimeters away.

          Oh, God.  Ella sucked in her breath, trying to think quickly.  If she let him kiss her, she was done for.  All of her work would be for naught.  She could never find vengeance against his family if she fell for him.  It was impossible.  Not to mention rude. 

          Although the idea of torturing him by allowing the kiss and then disappearing forever was tempting…

          “I make you uncomfortable,” Brent whispered, and she could smell mint on his breath, as if he’d just brushed his teeth.  He brushed his thumb against her cheek and she felt her knees shake.

          Damn, he was good.

          “You think very highly of yourself,” Ella retorted.

          He chuckled and leaned further in. 

          Kiss or no?

          Do it or don’t?

          “I do,” Brent said, stepping away.  “And you should leave before I have you thrown out of my home.”

          Ella stared at him, the way his eyes hardened, his arms crossed severely, his firm stance.  The complete opposite of the man she was falling for.  And exactly the jerk she expected him to be.

          He looked from her to the door.  “Goodbye.”

          Ella didn’t wait, turning on her heel and booking out of the room and out the front doors.