It won’t solve any world problems. But I have been told by non-relatives that it is amusing and entertaining and fascinating. A chick beach read.
So there is that.
I started it in 2007 when I was going through a divorce.
I finished it in 2008 and intended to just give a few to friends. Enter Createspace.com. I sold a few. Got a few reviews.
I edited and republished for Kindle in 2014. That was an experience, and I LIKE technology. We get along most of the time. Grrr.
Anyway. Here’s a little bit:
That damn thing is glaring at me, she thought, and felt her breakfast roll around in her stomach: someone was stirring it with a large spoon.
No. Not yet.
Standing in front of a mirrored elevator, dressed in a mauve suit that still smelled vaguely of cedar and mothballs (despite a careful application of perfume to mask it), she took a deep breath and held it, her lungs burning and glared back. Ten, twenty, thirty, forty seconds went by before the air demanded release and she pushed a noisy “Whooooosh” out with it.
It was no use. It was the size of a silver dollar. It was white with a large black up arrow on it.
No. Not yet.
What was her life supposed to be now? The last eleven years had defined who she was. That foundation was gone. She did not belong in this new life, yet had to stay. So much had already been taken away from her. The only option was to add something. Something that was hers. Something new.
What should I do? had become a daily plea. In reaching for an answer, she had grabbed an opportunity hoping to silence it. Knowing she would never be the same, and that nothing in her life would ever be the way it was again, she did the only thing she could.
She went forward.
It had been eight years since she had given up the career she treasured and recognized what needed to be put first. Those years had contained so much love it permeated her existence: massive, bright, unconditional love full of hugs, tears, and hysterical laughter.
And now here she was, creating – what? What if I can’t do this again? she thought. What if I have been out of this world so long that all the twenty and thirty somethings who took over have left skid marks pulling ahead of me? What if they all find out I was a great actress at the interview but I can’t deliver what I said?
She glared at it again. A button intimidates me?
“Excuse me,” said a male voice. She startled out of the tangled bushes in her head and looked to the left. “It works better when you push it.” An unusually tall, dark-haired man in his mid-thirties reached across her, pressed the elevator up button, and looked at her, amused. She returned his gaze, her dark green eyes blinking quickly. I’m over six feet tall in these shoes and he’s looking down at me. Flustered, she slung her black briefcase over her shoulder, looked away from the oddest, deepest blue eyes she had ever seen, and mumbled, “Yeah, I guess it would.”
They both waited in silence for the elevator. Utterly swathed in panic now, she nervously shifted her weight from one foot to the other, feeling perspiration roll down her back. You are fine, she said again to herself.
The doors opened with a ding and a clunk and revealed a space so small she was sure there had been a mistake. The elevator had shrunk on the way down to them and was now the size of a glove compartment. She blinked three times. You are fine. Tentatively, she lifted her left foot and took a step forward and then picked up her right foot to take another one. Four steps and she was in. She turned around and the tall man was beside her in two steps.
“What floor?” he asked, his finger poised in front of the panel of buttons.
Floor? She thought, Oh Yeah. “Uh.. seven, please.”
“Me too,” he said.
Unlike her, he seemed to find it easy to press yet another glaring button.
As the glove compartment went up, the ding signaling each floor drove her stomach further into her feet making her even more anxious and incapable of small talk with a strange man. After getting her kids to school that morning, changing her clothes four times, and still hating the image she projected in the mirror, her miniscule amount of “career-woman” bravado had abandoned her in disgust, tossing her into a fresh storm of insecurity.
Relief occurred when the doors opened and she stepped out of the small space. Taking another deep, silent breath, she moved toward a set of double glass doors at the end of the hallway and realized, dismayed, that the man was following her. Oh great, he’s some sort of creepy office stalker.
“Wait, let me get it,” he said, as she fought a moment with the heavy frosted glass door. He reached over her head and opened it wider. “I think you want Human Resources?”
She nodded wordlessly, her anxiety running off with her voice.
He pointed to a chair in the lobby, “I’ll get Susan. Have a seat.”
Following that direction was easy, so she sat – perched really – on the edge of the seat, her fingernails gripped the orange fabric.
She wanted something new that was hers and needed to find where she was supposed to be in her life now. Sitting there, Allison Hardy Pierce was sure of one thing: that place, there and then, was about to be a part of it.”