Thursday, February 16, 2017

You'll Save That For Mine

As I was working on the second edition of Make Mine a Heel I got to indulge in some of my favorite scenes. This one is top 5. Its their first and most fun fight.

Banner stopped the recording. “What was that?” She asked sharply.

Keith stared at her intently as if he had expected her reaction. “What was what?”  He asked deliberately.

“You cannot break out Ayn Rand on general American society. Do you realize how many people have no idea what ethical egoism is?” She actually put up quote marks with her hands as she said ‘ethical egoism’.

Keith became very still and disturbingly serious as his eyes never left Banner’s. “Yes I do.” The statement was as still as he was. He stopped long enough to let that sink in, and then continued, 
“You’ll take back the interview I give, or I’ll give no interview.”

Banner felt the hairs on her spine prickle as she began to understand what this was really about.  She needed to revise her game plan. Keith was going to make this a lot harder to dismiss than she had thought he was going to. Something else she was starting to understand that he knew before she even got here.

“Maybe we should eat first?” Banner supplied peaceably.

Keith nodded with a sharp cold smile as he uttered. “Maybe we should.”

He nodded at someone that Banner couldn’t see. A short dark haired girl appeared and once again Banner ceased to exist.

“Hi Keith, your usual?” she asked in a manner that suggested that perhaps she was part of his ‘usual’.

“Sorry darling, just the shake.” He said to her in a familiar tone.

She pouted and then turned razor dark brown eyes on Banner. “And what can I get you?”

Banner frowned. She hadn’t even looked at the menu. “The special.” She said quickly. It was her default in unfamiliar waters.

She paused and took one look at the storm brewing across from her. Just then she remembered the dull pain in her head.  In her mind the words, ‘fuck it’, were clear as a bell.  “And a Crown and coke.” She finished quickly.

Keith watched the cute little waitress leave and then focused all of his attention on Banner. “You didn’t strike me as the type to drink on the job.” He teased.

Banner was beyond being able to curb her thoughts anymore. Questioning her professional ethic was beyond reasonable. “I don’t have to when I like the job.” She snipped back.

“Are we not getting along Ms. Hemweigh?” His accent flared which let her know that his temper was up.

“Nowhere near. I suggest you stop picking at me until we are both more reasonable.” She advised sharply meeting his gaze unapologetically.

The look on his face said that the last thing he wanted to be with her was reasonable. “I thought I was being reasonable. You seem put out that I know big words.” He snapped back.

Banner sighed, here we go, she thought. In her best professional tone she started her spiel. “Mr. Daniels, it was not my intention to insult your intelligence, but I refuse to insult the intelligence of my audience.”

He nodded as he looked away from her for a moment. She could practically feel his teeth grinding. Then with a sharp tilt of his head she knew she was going to get what popped into his head anyway. The thought that had him grinding his teeth for self-control. “No, you’ll save that for mine.” He supplied.

Make Mine A Heel available in ebook and coming soon in print.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Make Mine a Heel 2nd Edition

In an effort to keep Fiona and Colan a little longer I decided to edit and release a 2nd edition of my first self-published ebook and historically top selling, Make Mine a Heel. As always when I dive back into the pages of this book nostalgia takes hold.  This time it was so refreshing as I expected such a mess of a story and saw that even then my voice had a cadence and a charm I hardly expect to see or read. I started critically and then I just fell back in love with Banner and Keith:

“You must hate me,” Banner whispered.

“Why would I hate you Bay? You’re at least here trying to understand.” His deep voice sounded solemn, humble. “That’s more than that jackass that knocked my mother up has ever even tried to do.”

The next thing she knew his hands were on her shoulders and she could feel his breath at her ear. “Yeah, we got off to a rocky start, but you’re here for the same reasons I am. We’ve done what we’ve done for basically the same reasons. I could never hate you.”

He turned her to look at him; the truth of it in his eyes. “Twice in your life?” she asked.

He gave a false smile with a joyless laugh. “I may have exaggerated a little.  I believe the last time I heard from the son of a bitch was him admonishing me for my career choice. With my size and athleticism I should’ve become a basketball player. Something people could respect.” He turned from her. “That was when I realized what a fool I’d been all my life. You tell yourself you’re doing something just to prove what you’re worth. It isn’t until much later do you actually admit who you’re trying to prove it to.” He admitted.

“Broke your heart,” she guessed.

Keith laughed. “A broken heart I could’ve dealt with. This was worse. It broke my spirit,” he shook his head gravely as he spoke. “I didn’t know which way was up anymore.” His voice turned gravelly as he spoke as strong emotions coursed with his words. “I had convinced myself in the deep dark parts of me that I never try and speak to that if I did good in this he would see what I was worth.” He stopped his face taking on this expression of mocking disbelief as he continued, “Finally he would come along. Be repentant, beg me to forgive him, and we could start fresh as I proved that I was worth his time. Now I would allow him to do the same.”

He sat again staring at the screen, the two men in the ring tumbling, twisting. The announcer was increasing his tone, his pitch to match the action. The crowd was screaming, yelling.   This was made all the more apparent by his stillness. His green eyes wide yet focused on the screen, almost innocent with shadows. For a moment Banner could see him as he had been when he fell in love with this sport. That young boy that hadn’t yet understood the whys and hows of life, but knew if he could chose it would be like what he saw.

“My foundation, my hopes and dreams were rocked and shattered. It was more devastating because I didn’t know until that very moment how much of what I had done and become was based on this perception. I had built everything on the idea that one day he would think I was worth his time.” He stared silently at the screen for a few moments after his wrenching speech.

Banner looked at the screen because his face was much too painful to look at. Then she just looked at the floor because watching what had made him choose what he had chosen was no better. She could see it. What a small boy would see; all the fans, the unconditional love, the affection. The absolute lines of right and wrong. Men hugging each other knowing that it was okay. It was the same things that made young boys play football or any other sport. Why boys joined the military. Why they joined gangs.  Always, they were just looking for a man strong enough to love them. They sacrificed everything only to wake up one day and realize that the only man that could do that for them is the one they become.

“My father, and I use that term loosely, is a waste of space,” he began his eyes never leaving the screen. “I was never going to matter to him. I was the fallout of a drunken night on a leave weekend from some Mexican whore that didn’t know any better. He was the son of a high ranking Navy Colonel and no way was the world going to know what he sired and with what. He considers my mother and our family mongrel beasts; nothing but poor hapless peasant stock. Had he known that I was being born he probably would’ve had it taken care of. As it was, my mother was much smarter than he ever figured. She used it to get into America. She made the ass pay child support and raised me to know all sides of myself. Not just the ones she was comfortable with. She planned it all out, right down to my name. Now I just know that the prick did a disservice to only himself. He missed out on an amazing woman.” He ended reverently.

“And a son,” Banner said softly.

“I think some things are hereditary. It took me a while to become the boy my mother tried to raise.”   He dropped his head. “The fallout from me was much worse than my father had ever wrecked.” He said dispassionately.

He wiped his face showing his exhaustion. “You’re right; I need a break. Didn’t realize it, but that took a lot out of me,” he gestured towards the TV. “Sit and watch for awhile?” he asked.

Make Mine A Heel available in ebook and coming soon in print.

Friday, January 27, 2017


Wednesday January 25th, Day Damn 6

It’s the right you always miss. I duck the left, block the jab. It’s a distraction. It’s there to make you pay more attention to it. Reactionary is the word. Reactionary is the process. It speaks to the most primitive defensive parts of self. I know mentally I know the right is the problem. Here comes the left. Here comes the left. I can't focus on that I have to remember that it’s coming. Left again jab left strike left. I can't let the right drop from my radar it’s the knockout punch it’s the one the ends me. Left, Jesus, left focus left, left. No stop paying attention to the left. The right is the haymaker. Left. Block, dodge, Left no I've got it. Move bob weave don't get lazy don't get tired. Bob weave that left is nothing its consistent constant and I know where it will be before it gets there. Move bob weave here comes that right.  Got you.

Beware of punch drunkeness. It’s designed to confuse the senses with abundance and sense of overwhelming uncertainty. It’s a myth because you know it’s coming and you know its only purpose is to make you miss when the right is coming. Train for it, move with it.  When the time is right counter it.