DAY 4: INTRIGUE, Chapter 1: Post #004

29 Aug

That afternoon, I reported to work at King Hall Computer Center. When I walked in, my eyes riveted on a muscular, bronzed Arab who stood behind the check out counter. This lean, long legged god possessed a sharp, straight nose and a tight ass.

Three eager coeds were chatting with him in French. His golden complexion and mop of glorious black curls brought out his angelic brown eyes. “Where did you come from?” I said under my breath.

During the lulls, Mr. Stud asked me questions like: Do you play tennis? Do you normally work at the King Hall? And, do you like the Pet Shop Boys?

I answered his questions with: Yes, but I suck at it. Actually, I usually work at Taper Hall. And, yes I like the Pet Shop Boys.

When we finished our shift for the day, we walked outside together. A crisp breeze brushed against my face lifting my bowlish blond hair up into the air. He was definitely of Arabic decent. What country he was from?

As we passed by the student fitness club he said, “I know you from somewhere.”

“You do?”

“Yeah. Where did I meet you?” He inquired.

My mind raced. I didn’t remember meeting him unless I danced with him at a disco or met him at a party. I shrugged my shoulders. “I don’t know.” I hoped that I had not done something foolish in the past and forgotten about it.

He said, “My name is Adam.”

“Hi Adam, I’m Stevie.”

“Your parents actually named you Stevie?”

Not funny, I thought. “No. My real name is Stephanie. But Stephanie is too stuffy. I prefer Stevie.” I point to myself. “Stevie’s more adventurous.”

“Adventurous. Wow. I thought maybe you were in show biz.”

“Yeah. Thanks.” We stopped walking. “How long have you been at USC?” I asked.

“Too long,” he replied.

This was becoming awkward. I looked down at my watch. “Well Adam, I gotta run. Nice working with you today.”

He replied, “You too.”


Please Welcome My New Persona, Jane Smart

27 Aug
Photo of keyboard and pen

Photo of keyboard and pen (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve been wrestling with coming up with a pen name for a while.  I decided that if I create a new persona and give myself a pen name, it would free up my writing.

Now I won’t have to worry about offending anyone should they recognize themselves in any upcoming works–they won’t be able to make the connection.  I still need to work out the logistics, but I figured why not? I’m certainly not the first nor the last to do this.  On that note, please welcome up and coming novelist, Jane Smart.

Jane Smart: I’m taking over this blog effective immediately, August 27, 2012. My other personality, Janet will be working behind the scenes while I hammer out this novel and get it published. At last I can speak my mind! I can let loose my creativity. I can play and manipulate words, scenes and stories.

                     Here’s to MY novel, Intrigue.



DAY 3: INTRIGUE, Chapter 1: Post #003

27 Aug



The sun warmed the air in Southern California. Mostly late 80’s and some 1990 models of Mercedes, BMW’s and other fashionable cars were parked on the university streets at the University of Southern California (USC). Wealth surrounded me in this little Mecca.

People affectionately called USC, the University of Spoiled Children. However, I wasn’t one of them. As a poor student, I tried to look like I belonged there. I was dressed in one of my favorite USC tee shirts, matching shorts and sneakers—probably Nike Air that I purchased with my student credit card.

I wore my pale blond hair in an early 90’s (a la Demi Moore; the hairstyle she wore in the movie Ghost); complete with a bowl cut and a point reaching down my nape of my neck. I looked like a boy with breasts. I sported long acrylic nails and wore bright pink lipstick.

I wasn’t Greek. That privilege belonged to the wealthy kids who could afford to be beautiful. The “true” Greeks were the slender, perky breasted sorority girls and the muscled (but possessing proud beer bellies) fraternity boys. Almost all of Greeks on campus had fake-bake tans from the local tanning salon. Scholarly, gray haired professors made their presence known on campus. They were gods in their own right. The foreign population exploded at USC. They came from every corner of the world.  USC wasn’t a melting pot; it was more like oil and water just shaken in a bottle.


23 Aug

Eating and writing. Writing and eating.

I thought I’d change things up and do my writing while I’m lunching rather than munching on a bowl of cereal (which I normally do during my morning writings). Busy writers do whatever they can to get their words down.

Weight management experts do not recommend this type of activity. However, If you feel you need to lose weight, you can try out Julian Cameron’s Writing Diet. It’s similar to the Artist’s Way, but you explore and enjoy food (and can lose weight) if you participate in Cameron’s Writing Diet. I did this a few years back and enjoyed the process.


I tend to get lost in my food while I’m reading. You can find salad dressing splashed across the pages. I know it’s gross but I get captivated when I read. However, while I’m writing,  I only take a bite to get a morsel of energy then type or write away–even if my cereal does get soggy. I focus on the writing so the meal takes a long time to finish and my stomach is satisfied. That’s a win-win for me.

Do you Eat & Write? If so, what is your eating & writing style?

DAY 2: INTRIGUE, Prologue: Post #002

22 Aug

The international line from North Africa bleeped into nothingness. It felt as if someone had told me that Adam went into a coma and no one would know when or if he’d snap out of it. But it was Adam telling me to cancel my plane ticket to Morocco. Nausea socked me in the gut. How would I go on? How could I have fallen for this?

I knew deep down that I never had a chance. Some how I knew he’d dump me. I was American and he was Moroccan. He was Muslim. I was Christian. I grew up in working class family. He was born into a wealthy family. The list could go on. Adam would never marry a Christian girl. But he had a history of dating American women.

Did all foreign men dispose their American girlfriends like that?

This unlikely tangled mess all started in 1990 at the University of Southern California.

DAY 1: INTRIGUE, Prologue: Post #001

20 Aug


I answered the phone. White noise washed through my ears. An empty but familiar voice said, “Hi Stevie. How are you?”

“I’m fine. How are you Adam?” I gripped the phone handle tightly

“Stevie, I have bad news.”

I sensed hesitation and dread in his voice. Something was wrong. “What is it?” My eyes and chest pounded.

The white noise sounded again for several seconds.

“Stevie, you have to cancel your plane ticket. My parents are not ready to meet you.”

“Okay.” I paused for few seconds. “When will I see you again?” My head was about to burst.

The inter-continental whoosh sounded for several seconds.

“Soon. Just cancel the ticket for now.”

It was so like him, not being able to give me a firm answer on the spot. Adam never lied to me, but he never gave definite answers either. He provided vague but optimistic responses.

My mind was spinning “Can’t you come back here? I can help you get your green card.”

“I can’t Stevie. I need more time.”

“Why not?” Just come back and get your green card, then I can meet your parents.”

Adam said, “This isn’t about getting a green card. It’s about us. I need to win my parents’ blessing too.”

White noise again. Was Adam still there? Then I heard a hollow trembling voice.

“Stevie, I have to go now. I’ll call you soon.”

“Okay,” I stammered. “Bye.”

DAY 1: INTRIGUE, Blogging a Novel

20 Aug

BLOG IDEAS (Photo credit: owenwbrown)

Dear fellow Bloggers & Writers,

My new exercise is to blog my novel. I planned on starting this a month ago, but as I mentioned yesterday, I allowed life to overtake my writing. I’m blogging my novel in small readable chunks. Some of you will recognize parts of previously submitted material–but the story will progress.

Until I can afford or find a smart and supportive writing group/coach, etc.,  I need to go forward. Please note this is a “Novel Under Construction” which means anything goes. I’m trying out Nina Amir’s approach on blogging a novel. You can learn more about her method by visiting her website at: 

Here’s to transforming the novel from my head  into the written word–by any means–including writing on a note pad, journal and sticky notes ;).





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