Snippet Sunday 3/22–A Passover-y snippet

Apologies for late comments, I got sidetracked last week and was also exhausted when I came home from working at the day job. Hope to comment on this week’s snippets tonight or tomorrow.
Continuing on with Carson and Malia’s story…any comments are much appreciated…trying to get this done, but moving like a turtle on everything…it’s more than 8 sentences, computer wouldn’t let me cut…
She was starving, too. If she were home, she’d be starting dinner right about now. She saw the box of crackers sitting on Carson’s table. “Do you mind if I…”
“Be my guest.” Carson handed her the oddest looking cracker she’d ever seen. Crackers were supposed to be small and square or round. This was one big cracker, about the shape of an eight by ten piece of paper.
“What kind of cracker is this?”
“It’s matzo.”
“What’s matzo?”
“Unleavened bread. The Jewish people ate it when they…do you mean to tell me you haven’t seen the movie ‘The Ten Commandments?’”
Malia shook her head.
“And you don’t know the story of Passover?”
“Vaguely. I haven’t been to church in years.”
Carson regarded her with his keen blue eyes. Then he began to speak in a radio-announcer voice. “I’m no Charlton Heston, and I’m not Jewish, but…this is the bread of affliction which are forefathers ate in the land of Egypt…”
Malia had to laugh at his impersonation of Charlton Heston.

Snippet Sunday 3/14–warm me up

I finished the love scene for Malia and Carson’s story. I thought the book was almost finished but now I realize there are a few things I left out.

Continuing on from last week’s snippet of “Fools Fall in Love” (working title), Carson and Malia are stuck at work and now she’s cold…any feedback is much appreciated…

Carson inched closer to her. “Are you cold?” He looked her over from her pink cardigan to her pink and white Oxford kitten heels.
“A little. I wore this outfit, and I’m freezing.”
Carson frowned. “You wouldn’t have gotten very far in those shoes. And…” He removed his flannel shirt and gently wrapped it around her. It smelled like clean laundry and citrus soap. “Does that take the chill off?”
“Yeah,” Malia said, sending him a smile. He had no idea how much the idea of wearing his shirt took the chill off. She was starving, too. If she were home, she’d be starting dinner right about now.

Snippet Sunday, 3/8–Stranded

Continuing on with my WIP, “Fools Fall in Love.” Last week, Malia and Carson were about to leave work when the power went out. Real life gave us a pretty bad snowstorm here in Ohio last week and gave me an adventure getting to work in my friend’s truck with my bad knee. Here’s what happens next to Malia and Carson:

Carson rushed back in, a concerned look on his face when he saw that she was staring at her Smart Phone. “I couldn’t even get out of the parking lot,” he said. “It’s terrible walking and my car…”
“The power’s out all over Washington County. What should we do?”
“I guess we’d better stay here. I can take some pictures and we can run with it for this week’s edition. My camera’s in the car.”
“What if somebody sees us?”
“I think most everybody left. Besides, if I’m taking pictures, I’m actually working, and you could write up a story about the weather, so we wouldn’t be dating.” He raised his black eyebrows. “There are a lot better ways to spend the evening than stuck here with you, believe me.”
“I know.” A hint of a smile crossed his face. “Don’t worry, Malia. I hate you!”
Malia gave an involuntary shudder, but not because of what he’d said. If he had added “now take off your clothes” to his “I hate you,” she might have complied. Maybe nobody would see him, but he was making it awfully hard to ignore her fantasies.
All feedback is greatly appreciated.

Snippet Sunday 3/1–getting hotter

My next snippet in “Fools Fall in Love.” I skipped ahead to Chapter Two. Malia is finding Carson harder to resist. And while I was editing, I found a POV switch, so I’ve changed it. Any feedback is much appreciated.

“Carson,” Malia said, coming out of her office to approach him at the table. Lord, he was hot in his navy and turquoise plaid shirt and dark jeans. The shirt was unbuttoned to reveal just a hint of his hairy chest. “It’s 4:30. You can go home.”
“I’m just staying late like you asked, boss. Besides, I just want to copy this last document.”
Carson ambled over to the copier and made the copy. Then he walked back to the table and shrugged into a leather jacket. Malia licked her lips, trying to remind herself of the no dating policy. Of course, that didn’t mean she couldn’t look. “Okay, I’m ready to go. Are you coming?”
“I’m going to stay a little longer and see how the traffic is. Did you sign out?”
“Yes, boss.”
“Good. And don’t call me ‘boss.’”
“But that’s what you are. I like to call people by their correct title.”
“Well, it makes me feel like some old guy. Or my mother. And she’s really your boss anyway.”
“Oh, believe me, you’re not…Never mind. Goodnight.”
Malia sighed and checked the weather and traffic on her Smart Phone. She planned to look on her computer, but suddenly, the power was out.

Snippet Sunday 2/22–she needs to see him…in the nude

Okay, I’m trying again to get back in the swing…don’t know how long this will last…just taking it a minute at a time. Happy Birthday to my ex-boss and George Washington!

Continuing last week’s snippet from my WIP which now has a title, “Fools Fall in Love.” I skipped a couple of paragraphs. Malia is waiting for Carson, a reporter on staff at the Morganville Weekly Banner who’s her employee, to show up.

Again, any comments are appreciated! Thanks to all for help and suggestions last week!

“I didn’t know you were timing me, boss.” Carson Finney’s smooth voice boomed across the room. As he signed in, Malia stared at him. Punctual, he wasn’t, but she had to admit that he was good-looking. He was at least six foot two with straight black hair and a hint of stubble on his face. Those huge brown eyes practically made her swoon. She adored every inch of his muscular form. She wanted to ask him out, but as owner, her mom had enforced a no dating policy for the staff.
Life on the docks had been gray, poor and depressing, so now Malia surrounded herself with bright colors. She always had a bouquet of flowers in her office, and made a habit of pinning one to whatever outfit she had on.
“Carson, I need to see you,” she said.
In the nude…in my bedroom…She thought the words she wanted to say.

And the award goes to…

Nutsie Nan Awards 2015
The food for my Oscar party will probably not be very good since I haven’t worked in seven months. As always, you don’t need a tux or designer gown (I can’t afford a designer gown anyway). There will be plenty of w(h)ine! This year, I’m combining the Famous Lines of 2014 with the Nutsie Nan Awards. Without further ado, the award goes to…
Perfect Attendance: Greg M.
Best Actor in a Silent Film: Greg M.
Best Picture: Untitled
Best Actor in a Comedy: Greg M.
Best Actress in a Drama: Nutsie Nan Honorable Mention: Tess T. R.
Best Original Song: “Galloway’s Dog” by Jay & the Cincinnatians
Best Music: Jay & the Cincinnatians
Best Animal: Sesame the Basenji Dog
Lifetime Achievement Award for Best Parents and Fake Parents: Marian Goldberg and the late Charlie Goldberg
No award for best costumes because I couldn’t afford them this year
Best documentary: “Red is the New Black”—A Day in the Life of Jay Galloway
Special Award for Putting up with Nutsie Nan—Marian Goldberg and all of my friends
Best Gossips and Tattletales—Nutsie Nan’s neighbors and Melvin’s Handyman Service (name changed to protect the guilty)

Famous lines of 2014
5) GM: “It’s gonna snow 3200 inches and there will be 1000 inches of ice.” “He’s more negative than I am!” –The late Clifford F. W.
4) “My life is over, Greg!”—Nutsie Nan
3) NL: “It’s Greg’s birthday.” Marian G.— “Well, I’m not sending him anything.”
2) “It’s all part of the conspiracy.”—Greg M.
1) “I’ve got things to do.” –Dan D.

Once upon a time…

My holiday short story anthology, Silver Dreidels, is finally available on Amazon. Here’s the link. ..

My snippet is from an as yet untitled story. I need to have it written by May. Any feedback would be appreciated because this is really raw. Some of you may have seen this story before, but in its original form, it wasn’t going anywhere, so I recycled. Once again, I apologize for not being around. As usual, real life gets to me so I have to take a break. I have to take everything one minute at a time. Once upon a time, there was a young lady named Malia Crabtree. She grew up on the boat docks in the small New England town of Morganville, Maine. When her father left, her mother didn’t take it very well. She always had a new boyfriend in the house, and she thought each one was her prince. Unfortunately, it took forever for the handsome prince to whisk Malia and her mom away to his castle. And then he passed on, leaving his newspaper empire to Malia’s mother. Regina Crabtree Woodward didn’t know much about running a newspaper, but she took over and learned as she went. One thing she did was enforce a strict No Employee Dating policy. Then she hired her daughter, fresh out of journalism school, to be editor. She later promoted her to managing editor.

***New release***, catching up, giveaway

I am pleased to announce that after many trials and tribulations, including some computer glitches, “Silver Dreidels,” my sweet contemporary Chanukah short story collection, is now available for purchase on Amazon. Here’s the link: B00TG019R8

And here’s an excerpt:
Holly led him to her favorite room in the house. When she wasn’t working or reading, she liked to cook. She refilled a ceramic tray with potato pancakes, spooning applesauce and sour cream into ramekins. She put antique serving spoons into the ramekins and watched Payton, who was studying her display of vacation destination photos.
“These are something,” Payton said. “Have you been to all these places?”
“No,” Holly admitted. “I was in high school when we went on our last vacation. Then there was college and law school and work. Nowadays if I want to go somewhere, I just read about it in a book.”
“Yellowstone,” Payton said, picking up one of the framed prints. “I’ve been there. I’d love to go back. And you should take some time…”
“Maybe I will,” Holly said. “Someday.”
He smiled. The sight of that smile almost made Holly melt. “All work and no play makes Holly a dull girl.”

Last year was a rough year for me and 2015 has been hard, too. At the end of the year (December 30) my co-worker and friend, Cliff, passed away after a bout with cancer. My alter ego, Vi LaNance, has a character who’s loosely based on him in her upcoming release, “Nutsie in Disguise.”

When I first met Cliff, our department at work was much larger so I got to know him better as people left to get other jobs and the department shrank. He was a Sagittarius and told it like it was. He had a great sense of humor. One of our ex-co-workers always called him “The Voice of Doom” because he always told us the rumors he heard like “they’re going paperless” or “we’re all gonna be replaced by monkeys.” He was always bringing us candy or donuts. Here’s an excerpt from “Nutsie in Disguise” that has his character in it…

It was almost eleven o’clock-ish, as Jay would say, and all of a sudden, pandemonium took over. It was a good kind of pandemonium when customers started coming through the door. Mr. Waincliff, my first customer when we’d opened the last time, walked up to the front. He was sixty-something and worked at the Social Security Office.
“Hey, good morning, Nan. I’m glad this place is finally open again. Give me two dozen muffins and mix up the flavors.” While Fred was getting the order ready, Mr. Waincliff asked about the flowers, which I’d placed in a painted Mason jar I’d used as a vase.

Cliff, you will be missed!

Thanks to everyone for putting up with me during this trying time. I know I don’t always make it easy and for that, I apologize.

I will give away a copy of “Silver Dreidels” to a random commentator who answers the following question…name one of the vacation destinations Holly has pictured in her kitchen. Good luck, leave your e-mail.

Snippet Sunday Jay and Raven 12/7/14

Here’s the snippet from my new WIP, “Jay Galloway’s Day Off.” He just picked up his friend, Raven, at her parents’ house that she’s trying to sell. I skipped ahead a little. This is super raw. Any comments are appreciated.

She gazes wistfully at the old Craftsman-style home, but doesn’t say a word. I turn on the radio and The Animals are singing “House of the Rising Sun.” When I stop for a red light, I grab an empty plastic pop bottle to use as a microphone and start to sing along. I hope this will cheer Raven up, and get my mind off my incredibly shrinking bank account. Raven starts to sing, too, pretending the dashboard is a keyboard.
That song ends, replaced by “All I Have to do is Dream.”
“I love this song,” Raven says, as I head out Reading Road toward her apartment. “Remember when we were kids, and we sang a different version?”
“Yes.” I’d driven my mom crazy singing “All I Have to do is Scream.” “My mom didn’t like hearing me mangle that song because she went to an Everly Brothers concert and got to meet them.”
Raven looks like she’s going to cry over all the memories of our parents and living next door to each other, so I sing. When I get to get to the word “scream,” Raven screams and we both start laughing.

You can’t go home again?

Tomorrow marks the two-year anniversary of when my friend, Greg, and I found my parents on the floor of their home, sick and dehydrated. They had to go into the hospital, then to rehab, and then into the nursing home permanently. Now I’m getting the house ready to sell and every time I go over there, I think that I’d better take a good look because very soon, the home where I grew up and where my parents lived for almost sixty years will belong to someone else. My dad passed away in March, but he always told me to take care of the house. I hope I’m doing the right thing.
Sunday was especially bittersweet because when I called the cab to pick me up, the dispatcher said he was sorry to hear about my dad and about how nice a guy he was. The cab driver who picked me up asked how they were so I had to tell him about my dad. He remembered how nice my dad was, too.
For awhile after the realtor left, I just sat in my old room, remembering…
This is the house where I wrote my first story. It’s where my late husband proposed, and where we had our hayride date and mock wedding. I moved back and lived there again for almost a year after a fire in 2005 while they rebuilt my condo. When I saw the copy of my mom’s “Encyclopedia of Cooking” book, I remembered that this is where I learned to cook (first recipe? Fudge).
I remember playing outside in the snow, and then coming in to watch “The Wizard of Oz,” and drink my mom’s hot chocolate. I remember the blizzard of ’77 and my dad trying to go to work, but not being able to even walk down the driveway, the snow was so bad.
And I remember the loving support of my parents through celebrity crushes (George Harrison of the Beatles, Peter Tork of the Monkees, the guy who played Bud on the TV show “Flipper” and Len Mink (singer on George Clooney’s dad’s TV show), bad boyfriends and dates, “differences of opinion” with my husband and friends, tasteless book rejections, being bullied, and loss of my husband, jobs and pets.
I love you, Mom and Dad, and I’ll always remember life in our home. And I still hope I’m doing the right thing.


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