Want to know who won the ebooks? Check HERE for the list of winners.
Hello and welcome to the Finding Ms. Write blog tour! I’m especially proud of Finding Ms. Write as it is my first spin at editing an anthology. My heartfelt thanks goes out the Jae for inviting me to be a part of this project. She’s a kind and patient mentor, and I’m lucky to work with her.
As part of the tour, we’re giving away five e-book copies. All you have to do to enter is drop a comment on any of the posts along the way. We’ll announce the winners at the conclusion of the tour. Good luck!
I wasn’t sure I would write a story to include in Finding Ms. Write. Not that I don’t adore the concept, because I do. I love the idea of book people finding each other, and I’m a sucker for a good romantic story. But I was in this weird, non-productive time for my writing. I had ideas, that’s something that never changes, but they fled the moment I tried to commit the words to paper, to give life to those ideas.
I tossed around a few different ideas for this anthology, including a re-visit to Liz and Charlie who featured in the short story “Red and Green and Gray.” They made their debut back in 2014 as part of Unwrap These Presents, Ylva’s holiday anthology that year. Liz and Charlie were sweet together despite being inmates at a minimum security prison, and they bonded over letters to and from Santa. They were an unlikely match in an unlikely setting under unlikely circumstances, but they just worked.
For some reason, though, they weren’t interested in making another appearance just yet. I put that idea away and waited.
Finally, long after the deadline for submissions had come and gone, Barbara and Muriel finally poked their heads out from the 1950s suburb and introduced themselves. “Cherry Park Pulp,” the story that ultimately resulted, made it to Jae for editing just in the nick of time, and thankfully, she liked it. I’ve no idea where this ode to the dimestore pulp novels came from, but I kinda like it. And I hope you do to. Here’s an excerpt, just to give you a little taste.
Cherry Park Pulp – An Excerpt
Abby hustled over to the newcomer and linked their arms together. “Barb, this is Muriel. She’s Caren’s oldest.”
Barb’s mind raced. She had no idea who Caren was or why Abby thought that was a suitable way to clarify who this person—Muriel—was or how it explained why she was standing in Barb’s kitchen. Nonetheless, she smiled her best and said, “It’s lovely to meet you.”
Muriel returned the smile, a dazzling, brilliant display of teeth that made Barb falter even more. Where Abby was short and solidly built, with extra padding attributed to the birth of her four boys, Muriel was tall and slender. Rather than the traditional housewife dress that was the norm in Cherry Park, she wore a button-down dress shirt that fit too well to be a man’s, slim-fitting trousers, and sensible, yet highly polished, shoes. Her makeup was straight from the Hollywood rags, and combined with her perfectly coifed curls à la Hollywood glam, she looked like a bona fide movie star.
Back when Barb had been young and more than a little reckless, she’d had a friend who looked a great deal like Muriel. No, that wasn’t right. They looked nothing alike, but they both carried themselves with the same casual daring, as though they had been miscast as the heroine and were really the dashing hero. Later, that friend had become her roommate, and Barb finally understood what made her different. All it took was the lion’s share of a bottle of very fine brandy and an extremely satisfying round of cunnilingus.
They’d remained friends—and more—after they’d graduated and gone off to work. Barb worked for the phone company, kept her Victory Garden to do her part to support the boys overseas, and spent her nights not thinking about how perfect it felt when her friend curled up behind her as they slept.
The war ended; she lost her job at the phone company, and Richard, along with the other soldiers, returned from flying bombers over tiny islands in the South Pacific with names Barb couldn’t even pronounce. Her friend moved to Manhattan, and Barb moved to Cherry Park. Now, five years later, she spent her nights trying not to think about how much she missed being held at night. Muriel looked to be about the age Barb had been when she’d married Richard.
Barb reflexively brushed her hands over her hair, patting it gently to tame the frazzled mess.
“…and so she’ll be with us through the summer at a minimum. Possibly longer, depending upon how her job search goes.”
Barb missed a good part of Abby’s explanation but smiled and nodded along in the appropriate places. She stared at Muriel, captivated by the teasing glint in her eyes that promised more trouble than Barb could afford. It was the same look that always led to a lot of fun followed by a lot of consequences when she’d been younger—a look she’d never figured out how to say no to.
Twelve authors of lesbian fiction bring you a collection of romantic short stories about “book people”—heroines who are somehow involved in the publishing industry.
From a novelist with the world’s biggest crush on her editor to a beta reader connecting with her cabinmate on a cruise, from a woman seeking rare books who finds love instead to a bookstore owner who’s drawn to the shy writer sitting by the shop’s window every day, this anthology is full of stories guaranteed to have a happy ending.
Step into our world of books and enjoy a glimpse into the lives of writers who are chasing deadlines…and finding love.
Don’t forget to check out Anastasia Vitxky’s stop on the tour tomorrow!
The Blog Tour Schedule
- June 15 – Jove Belle (Right here!)
- June 16 – Anastasia Vitsky
- June 17 – A.L. Brooks (blogging at Jae’s site)
- June 18 – Elaine Burnes
- June 19 – Lea Daley (blogging at Jove’s site)
- June 20 – Melissa Grace
- June 21 – Hazel Yeats (blogging at Jae’s site)
- June 22 – Kathy Brodland (blogging at Jove’s site)
- June 23 – Cori Kane
- June 24 – Chris Zett
- June 25 – Jae