To celebrate, I'd like to share a snippet from Blackbird Flies, my very first YA novella. The story is very close to my hear for many reasons, most of which because Stephanie Taylor, and the other amazing folks at Astraea Press, gave me a chance with this book when no one else would...even in Canada.
Starting next week, though, I'm going to take you all along with me in creating my next YA and middle grade books! I hope you're ready for the ride. ;D
Okay. Without further ado, here's a great scene where Payton connects with both of the significant women in his life: his stepmom and the beautiful Lily.
This scene occurs after a very excruciating car ride with his step mom and listening to her trying to keep a conversation going that should have died long before:
Payton finally had to intervene. “Um…you know…you don’t need to talk so much,” he said. “I don’t mind just listening to the radio. In fact, I prefer it.”
Katie’s face flushed. “Oh, well, I…I’m sorry. I was just trying to…"
“Don’t try,” Payton said, staring straight ahead. “Please.”
When they got to the side street she picked him up at the day before she slammed the car into park. “Look. I’m sorry,” she said. “I don’t expect to be a mother to you. You had a mother. But I’m
He ignored her, trying to open his door. Katie grabbed his arm.
“Look, you and I have a lot in common, Payton,” she said, her voice trembling. “I lost both of my parents
the same age as you—Dad to cancer then, less than a year later, Mom to booze. I think if you gave me a chance, you’d find we could at least become friends. You have your music to absorb your thoughts…I clean and organize stuff. Just…well…I’m here, that’s all. Your Dad will be here later.”
He paused before getting out. Did he have a “The Doctor Is IN” sign hanging around his neck? He watched Katie’s car skid off down the street. Payton was officially a jerk. He inhaled deeply then turned to walk across the street. Just as he turned around he walked smack into Lily.
“Geez, man,” he said, exhaling sharply. “What are you doing here?”
Lily put her hands up. “Sorry, I was over there the whole time,” she said. “I just didn’t want to jump out at you or anything.”
“So, it’s better to lurk in the shadows listening in on people’s conversations?” he said, stuffing his hands into his pockets and turning his back to her.
She ran around him then shoved her hand into his chest. “Hey, look. You don’t get to talk to me like that, all right?” she said, her face flushed. “This brooding, James Dean thing you got going on may turn the chicks on where you’re from, but it doesn’t fly here…especially there.” She pointed to the school. “Stuff the attitude and start accepting the fact there are people around you who actually give a crap about you, despite what a jerk you’re being.”
She shoved him hard enough that he stumbled back a few steps then she jogged across the street. He watched her until she was half way up the sidewalk to the front doors of the school. He stood there, shivering, his shallow breath hanging in the air in small puffs.
Well, he thought. I guess I’ve been told.
By two different women.
Payton wanted to run after Lily and apologize but his stubborn size thirteen feet wouldn’t budge. So he just stood there…shivering…until the bell rang, jolting him back to full attention.
He bolted across the street, narrowly missing the front bumper of a black Ford Ranger. The frosty spring air prickled his lungs but he kept running all the way to the doors. He didn’t want to think about his dad, Katie or even Lily…not then. There was a concert grand piano calling for him.
And he needed to answer.
That's it for this week! I'm very excited that you've joined us over here and hope to see you next time. OH! And do be sure to visit the other amazing talented writers HERE. You won't be disappointed. Be sure to join me next time because your input is what helps keep me going to finish these book ideas. ;Dtrying to be friends here, at least. Cut me some slack, will you?”