Several months ago—oh, let's say July—I posted a bit from a work in progress that I've been progressing (heh) on for several years. I should probably do this more, because I have so many projects in play. See, I don't get writer's block. I really don't. But I move a lot. I have over 250 stories "in the works" at any given time. Some with a few lines. Some almost finished. Some merely a whisper of a title.
I'm the same way with novels. I have outlines. Ideas. Chapters. Drafts. While one book may take a few months, others (oh, you evil Lizard Queen) look as if they'll take decades.
"The Great Distraction" is about fifteen-thousand words long. I put up an early chapter here.
Now I give you a little more... I was oh so sure I'd slipped this up before, but I can't stroke my fingers on the post:
Marlow burst out laughing when I brought up the email. “You waited until now to show me this? I’ve been here for over an hour! I drank a whole beer, for Christ’s sake.”
“You forgot that some hot twenty-six year old wants to go down on you for hours at a time? How did that slip your mind?”
“I wasn’t taking it seriously.”
“Well, I think you should.”
The two of us stared at the boy’s profile picture. You can’t tell that much about someone from a small postage-stamp-sized photograph online, but he was handsome. Dark blond hair. Brown eyes. Tanned. He had all the muscles I remember from being with twenty-six year olds, back when I was a nubile nineteen year old. There was no way I was going to expose my forty-something body to this boy.
“Read me the letter again?”
“Goddess, let me.” I snorted. Marlow pushed me out of the way so she could read the email herself.
Goddess, let me into your world. Let me into your bed. Let me into your body. Goddess, let me dine on your daisy…
Marlow shrieked with laughter. “Daisy!”
I felt suddenly protective of the boy. “What’s wrong with that? Only pussy work for you?”
“No, but daisy. You are the least like a daisy of any woman I’ve ever met.”
I couldn’t decide whether or not to find that offensive.
“What kind of flower do you think I’m like?”
“Wheat,” Marlow said after a moment’s hesitation.
“Wheat’s not a flower.”
“You’re not a flower, Jude. You’re a grass.”
“Speaking of which,” I said, reaching for the joint in my pocket. “I’ve rediscovered the pleasures of getting high.”
She read on. “Goddess, let me show you what I can do. I want to pleasure you for hours. I want to dazzle you with my tongue.” She fell back on the bed. “When was the last time Hank dazzled you with his tongue?” she asked.
“I can’t remember. He wasn’t much of a dazzler.”
“What do you mean?”
“He liked the bjs, but not so much the pjs.”
“In English, Jude.”
“I can count on this hand how many times Hank went down on me.” There was no reason to hide this fact now. I might have been embarrassed in the past revealing Hank’s idiosyncracies in bed, but now I had nothing to lose.
She pushed up on her elbows. “You’re kidding.”
I shook my head and lit the joint.
“You stayed with a man who wanted you to blow him but would not return the favor? You lived with him for a fucking decade?”
I inhaled. Marlow waited.
“When we got together,” I started, in a puff of smoke, “I guess I wasn’t that good at asking for what I wanted. When I got better at asking, Hank had gotten pretty good at not listening any longer.”
Marlow didn’t seem satisfied with this as an answer.
“We weren’t fucking much by the end,” I summed up. “I thought we had moved past that.”
I shrugged. “It didn’t seem like such a big deal.”
Marlow sat at the computer and hit REPLY to the letter that was still open.
“What are you doing?”
“I’m making you a date.”
“I can’t… I don’t know how.” I tried to stop her. She was already typing.
“You can. It’s easy.”
“No,” I pushed her. She pushed back.
“I never dated, Marlow. You know me. I always fell ass backwards into any relationship.”
“Fall forwards,” she told me.
“You do it,” I said. “You go for me.”
“He saw your picture, Jude. He wants to meet you. Let him.”
I stared at her, watching her fingers flying over the keyboard. “Goddess, let him,” Marlow giggled as she hit SEND.
Of course, the deadline I'm fucking right now is a bit jealous. You know the type. Doesn't want me to see other projects on the side. Which makes cheating like this that much more delicious. I keep sneaking words onto the page, lying to my main project, offering sweet murmurs of assurance before I slip out the back door.