Writing To Do List: 11 items

Technically I guess that should read 12 because I didn’t include the Special Delivery galley I’m doing right now. Oh, and there’s another short I need to prep and send. Oh well. I’m leaving the title like it is because it makes me feel better. The important bit is that I just sent in a submission for the Necking anthology at Dreamspinner, so that’s one thing off my list. Here is the blurb I came up with:

Parker and Robbie’s relationship is heading slowly to disaster until Parker gets drunk at a museum party, spills his mimosa on a handsome young man, and ends up fondling him in a public restroom. When Robbie walks in on them, it should be the end they’d both been dreading. Somehow it’s the beginning of an erotic adventure instead, and their unexpected three-way might just be what Parker and Robbie need to bridge the gap between them and bring them back together again.

Here’s the kicker: that story? IS IN FIRST PERSON. I don’t do first person. I will read it, but I admit, I approach it tentatively every time. I don’t know why, but I like third better. This said, some of the best stories I’ve read lately have been in first person, so let it not be said I turn up my nose at everything in FP. I never, though, thought I would write it. In the past I’ve tried, and it was so awful I swore it was the last time. But this one woke me up in the middle of the night and came out in a day. And it wanted to be in first person. I suspected, then, that it was really awful. So I gave it to a few people and said, "Well?" Everybody who read it said the same thing: "Shut up. Don’t mess with it. Just fix these type-os and send it now." So I did. I just emailed it now and erased it from the board.

Oh, it’s Tuesday. Let’s give a teaser of that one. I called it "Down the Middle." It’s from a song title, but I don’t know if anyone can guess from where. 

“Give me your shirt, David.” I held out my hand and gave him an expectant look, and after only the barest of hesitations, he complied, unbuttoning the white shirt the rest of the way and peeling out of it before placing it in my hand. He stood now, shirtless, both nipples pert and hard, whether from arousal or cold I couldn’t know.

I pretended it was the former, because I liked that better.

He was young. I was thirty-four, but he was early twenties at best. He had the supple skin and glow of someone who hadn’t even considered panicking about a wrinkle or had his throat close at the sight of how thin his hair was starting to get, or how far back it had crept from his forehead. He had blond, carefully mussed hair, and he had a cupid’s bow mouth that made me want to suck on his lips. And I didn’t think it was the mimosas telling me that this sweet, subdued creature wanted me to.

God, it still feels weird to me. Oh well. It’s over. It’s sent. YAY.

I am also working on edits for TSV. S-l-o-w-l-y. I haven’t done any today, which I should remedy. If you’ve read the story, Charles is going down the tower stairs to face Smith and Timothy is giving him a goodbye kiss. That’s where I’m at.  

Oh, why not. A teaser from that too:

Fire. Fire surged and beat inside him, fanned by an unseen wind. He felt power—he didn’t understand it, but he felt it, rising slowly, surely inside him. He saw the white Charles appear in his mind’s eye, tall and radiant and filled with magic. That is me, Charles thought. The White Charles is me. I have his power. He is me.

He felt the fog creeping up the sides of the abbey, felt it as surely as if it were crawling against his own skin. It is time. He lowered Timothy to the floor and gently, reluctantly broke the kiss, taking a moment to nuzzle his cheek and place one last kiss there.

“It is time,” he whispered, out loud. I’m frightened, he added to himself, but he still felt the fire inside him.

Timothy took his hand wordlessly and led him the rest of the way down the stairs. He put his hand on the latch that held the door closed, turned and placed one last lingering kiss on Charles’s lips, then opened the door.

The hallway beyond was filled with black smoke that curled like snakes’ tails, and in the center stood Smith. He looked as if his skin had been stretched too far, and his eyes glowed a devil’s red.

“Hello, pet,” he said, and grinned at Charles as he extended his hand to him. “Come out, now, and play.”

I mentioned that I’m working on the galley for Special Delivery, which is true. So is Dan. We’re neck and neck on getting through it; right now he’s at chapter five and I’m at chapter six, but give him time after work tonight, and that will change. It’s going well, but I keep finding really dumb continuity errors that I can’t believe I didn’t catch until now. Dan has found several misspellings which weren’t caught because they’re other words and very subtle, but his greatest outrage came when I misspelled Judy Bernly. I added an e, and after reading this thing about fifty fucking times, he just now caught it. Nobody tell him he’s the only one on earth who would have noticed.

(Now I wait for sixty lurkers to show up and declare themselves 9 to 5 fans who would have seen it too.)

I’m blurbing everything else. Why not this?

“Scared me?” Sam couldn‟t believe this. “No, you didn’t scare me! Not until—” He cut himself off.

“Yes?” Mitch pressed, leaning forward. “When did I scare you?”

Sam was blushing hotly, partly from the alcohol, but mostly from a complete panic over how he was supposed to answer this. He couldn’t very well admit he’d been nervous after Mitch didn’t fuck him.

But Mitch was watching him intently, waiting, thinking he’d done something wrong. Clearly he was planning to not jump Sam at all until he figured out how he should be dialing himself back. Sam’s face was beet red now, and he thought the bartender was listening, and maybe another couple on the other side of Mitch.

And yet, if Sam didn‟t speak up, he might as well go get on a plane.

“I was scared,” he said in a barely audible whisper, “when you stopped.” He stared down at the top of the bar, into the empty shot glasses. “I thought I’d done something wrong. I probably did.”

Sam’s face felt so hot that it felt distended. He looked up at the bartender, who was boldly watching him, listening and grinning.

“Can I please have more tequila?” Sam asked.

Lastly, I’m working on Two to Tango. Amazingly, I have 25,000 words on it, feel like I’m just getting started, and here’s the kicker: they just now kissed. They have teased like all hell, but nope, this is the first kiss. And there’s a twist on it as well. It’s a story much, much more about the romance than any m/m I’ve written yet. But I’m enjoying it very much, and it is insistent on being written right now, and it has no patience whatsoever with my million things to do. If I don’t write enough on it during the day, it wakes me up in the middle of the night.
 
It’s set in Minneapolis, and I take them to a real place called Matt’s Bar. And yes, Juicy Lucys are real.

“I’m Laurie Parker,” Laurie said, and shook his hand. He glanced at Ed. “Is he okay? Should I take him to a hospital?”

At this comment Ed reared back, alarmed, but Liam shook his head and held up a hand to calm him. “Easy, big guy. He’s just worried, like I am, that maybe you went a bit too heavy on the beer. How many Lucys did you pack in?”

“One.” Ed made a face. “Not training. Not like you. Can’t burn it off.”

Understanding dawned on Liam’s face, and Ed hated it. “Shit. I should have figured it out sooner. Sorry, big guy.”

“What,” Laurie asked, “is a Lucy?”

The table erupted into spontaneous outbursts of disbelief and outrage, and two guys who were new to the team this year got up to hunt down a waitress. Laurie looked nervous, so Ed tried to explain for him.

“Juicy Lucy,” he said, and held up an imaginary burger. “Hamburger with cheese in the middle.”

“Matt’s is known for them,” Liam added. “The cheese becomes a sort of molten cheddar center. And, fair warning: don’t eat them right away. Give them a minute to cool off so you don’t burn off your tongue with the liquid cheese.”

Laurie seemed to relax a little. “I see. I was a little worried, when Ed mentioned them, that I was coming to collect him at some seedy strip club.”

“We meet there on Tuesdays,” somebody called out from the other side of the table, and everyone laughed. Everyone but Laurie, who looked a little nervous still.

And yes, here you see that I am still recycling names. It’s Parker in the menage short and Laurie Parker in TTT. I also had to change "Ed" in Special Delivery to "Craig" in the copy edit because I realized I’d used Ed again in TTT, and I couldn’t bear to change it. I have a lot of creativity, but not when it comes to names. It’s how I roll.

So this is why I am not blogging. As ever, if you want to know what the hell I am doing, why I am not answering your email or catching the feed on FB or possibly even returning your phone call, it’s because of the huge and impossible list. Though for whatever reason you can still catch me on twitter. It’s my water cooler and often my nexus point.

There are other non-writing things I could update, but this has already gotten long. I will try and do that tomorrow, when I also need to call my grandmother, because I’m realizing I have forgotten to do so, again. I guess I’ll just put it on the list….

5 Comments on “Writing To Do List: 11 items

  1. I don’t know how you can so effectively work on so many different works at once, but you’re amazing for it! I can’t wait to read each and every one. 🙂

  2. Well, the most obvious choice is “Walk Straight Down The Middle” from “The Sensual World”, but I could well be being TOO obvious with my guess, and you might surprise me, in which case I will go back and play my entire Kate back catalogue to find it.

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