Since this is my first official blog “tour”—I say tour but really, it’s more like a quick weekend get-away—I’d like to thank Charlie for giving me a chance to connect with you all!
Especially since I kind of emailed her out of the blue and prostrated myself at her feet. Okay it was slightly less dramatic than all that, but still, I’m grateful that she didn’t think I was a complete weirdo.
Why am I here? I’m here to pimp out my very first (ahhhhh!!) short story that Less Than Three Press is publishing for me, to be released July 22nd, 2015.
“If I were tired of you, I would have stopped walking when we passed the hotel,” he said. He knew it was a lie as soon as he said it. He’d promised he’d join Cory for dinner, and short of falling ill he wasn’t the type of person to back out on a promise.
“Would you have?”
He’d probably invited the question, but Elliot still hadn’t been expecting it and he was forced into giving it honest thought. He couldn’t help but look away though as he gave the question serious consideration.
In their careers, there was a lot of time spent doing things that pandered to clients or companies. Elliot was used to doing things he didn’t really enjoy. If he were honest with himself, he probably would have stayed even if he didn’t really want to. Except that right now he kind of wanted to. Cory seemed more interesting to him tonight, and he wanted to see more of that Cory, not the one who just flirted and smiled emptily. He wanted witty quips and the man who wanted to hear him talk.
“See?” Cory said. “You need to be more assertive. Stand up for yourself.”
Not liking the fact that once again Cory had clearly been able to tell just what he’d been thinking—or at least enough to know his feelings—Elliot frowned. It was more at himself than Cory, though. Maybe there was a lesson in poker faces that he could sign up for. How to Hide Your Thoughts 101. Yours for only five easy payments of $19.95. Surely there was something on the Shopping Channel—they sold everything.
“I stand up for myself when it matters,” he said after a long moment.
Cory’s disbelieving expression called him out on his rather obvious lie.
“I do,” he tried to insist, but it sounded weak even to him.
“And yet you don’t like me and I still managed to convince you to have dinner with me,” Cory said. He seemed nonplussed by the idea that Elliot didn’t like him.
“I don’t dislike you,” Elliot replied. It was true. Disliking something or someone was an active emotion. Up until tonight, he’d considered Cory a continued and necessary annoyance—and something to think about when he was bored and alone, not that he’d ever admit that—but that was about it. “And I need to eat. There didn’t seem any harm in having dinner with someone else.”
At least there hadn’t seemed like any harm in the idea until Cory had started acting so damn human. Now Elliot was wondering if he’d made a bad decision. He’d seen Cory charm people before and the last thing he needed was to fall for that charm.
“You don’t dislike me. Well, I certainly feel better now,” Cory said dryly.
While I’m definitely over the moon happy about finally getting my toes in the proverbial water, it has unfortunately pounded home the reminder that I am absolutely terrible at finishing things.
Like, really terrible. I’m pretty sure if the fate of the world rested on me actually finishing something… well, it was really nice knowing you all, and thank you Italians for inventing spaghetti. I’ve lived in my current apartment for two and a half years and I still haven’t finished unpacking. It’s that bad.
It probably doesn’t help that my standard mindset for anything is to do ALL THE THINGS. All of them. All at once. I’m like that at work too—which is great when you have to multi-task, but not so much when you’re trying to advance an existing plot.
I think what worked best when I was working on Playing the Lines was that I already had a definitive end in mind when I started writing. Though I might have to invest in one of those massive flip charts when it comes to something longer than 12,000 words. I doubt my landlord would be all that happy with me if I started writing plot points on my walls.
So if anyone has any advice on how not to get distracted by shiny new ideas every five seconds… please tell me your secret ways. I’m begging you.
Until then, I hope you’ll give Playing the Lines a chance, and I definitely hope you like it!