As you may know from my previous posts and Becoming an Author series, I have recently submitted my manuscript to Swoon Reads. You can update a bit on the exact post here.
So Swoon Reads is currently having Read Month where your voice can help get YA authors like myself published through your comments, reads, and ratings! In case you were wondering what my novel is actually about I have an excerpt from the first few pages placed below. I hope you give my novel a chance and if you like what you read here (and even if you don’t, all feedback is welcome!) please check it out on the following site: www.swoonreads.com/m/the-point/. It is easy to create an account and really, all interest in this project helps in getting noticed. Thanks for taking the time out to peruse and I hope to gain some more invaluable insights from you!
Excerpt from, The Point
You see, there’s this girl. And not just any girl. This girl is THE girl. She is THE one. You know how we always search for THE one? The one that makes us that much better just because they are there to shed some sort of light or love with a certain look or touch? The one that makes life worth living and makes you want to be the person that they deserve as well? Well I found her but like every darn good thing that comes into my life, I lost her. I know, you’re probably thinking here’s another story about a jerk to proclaim that he’s found the one and lost her doing something incredibly stupid but let me tell you how that’s NOT the case.
Yes, I’ve probably been a jerk at some point in my life, and yes I found the love of my life, and yes I may have done something incredibly stupid but here’s the kicker – it wasn’t all MY fault. Bet you don’t hear that every day. In fact it was both of our faults, maybe even hers more so than mine but again that’s not the point. The point dammit is that I lost her and really want – no NEED – her back in my life. Maybe I’m crazy enough to think she would want me back or that I actually deserve her but that’s not the point either. The point of it all is not whether we deserve one another because I mean, who can ever really know what one deserves? I can hardly make up my mind what I want for lunch but yet I know I deserve a woman as awesomely brilliant and perfectly flawed as Alice? No, it’s not about deserving. It’s needing and complementing and all that wonderful shit. Completing each other, you know?
I’ll be honest, I don’t get mushy about much but when I lose something I really love or really like I get mushy. I’m human, hell. Am I not allowed to get mushy and sentimental and crap? But right, the point. The absolute point of why I’m telling you all this is real and complex and deep and wonderful and scary and stupid and crazy and just is all at the same time. The point I am getting at is when you find someone who you cannot absolutely live without, who really and totally completes YOU – and I’m not talking the artificial you that you create in your head to please everyone but the real-God honest YOU – the one hardly any if anyone at all knows. The inner turmoil and twisted, dark you that even you weren’t sure fully existed YOU. If you found this person who gets that and I mean really gets THAT. Then for God’s sake, you fight for that person and win back that person and do whatever it takes to get that person back in your life forever. How do you do that, you may ask. Well that’s the point…
Okay so this one day. This hot summer day must have been in like August, you know? Because most hot days happen in August. I guess hot days exist in July too but if you want truly hot days, you don’t feel ‘em until August. But that’s not the point. The point is it was a hot August day, and my buddy Rich and I were just hanging in his backyard. Typical white suburban neighborhood where everyone has manicured lawns, and curvy driveways and two-storied houses and backyards and shit. That kind of neighborhood.
Anyway my buddy Rich and I were just sitting on lawn chairs in his backyard next to his pool, you see, in this neighborhood you either have a pool or a trampoline or both. Rich just has the pool, I have both. We were just chilling you know, we sort of have this rock band and all of our equipment is in Rich’s bathhouse, which is why we were just hanging there. Mike and Bill already left after our session to help cook dinner or set tables for dinner or some dutiful son stuff like that. So here Rich and I were. You see Rich is probably the closest friend I have, the brother I never had. So we were just talking and all of a sudden I said: “Rich, you know what I really want?” Rich rolled his eyes as he flipped his guitar magazine, he’s always rolling his eyes or flipping some magazine because he’s used to my crap by now: “Sure what is it Willoughs?” Here’s another thing. I have the weirdest name ever, so everyone calls me by my last name. My parents thought it was cute to name me after some long dead relative but I honestly prefer my last name than to be called that shit. And you better not ask me what my real name is or I promise I will sock your eyes out.
“I want a black girl.” I retorted. Rich scoffed and turned his magazine yet again, “What prompted this, dare I ask?” “What do you mean, what prompted this? Aren’t you bored living here? Don’t you want something new? Dude, we’re starting college in a month and we’ve always been stuck HERE. It’s time for a change!” I replied.
“All right, why don’t we try the new Mexican place downtown like I’ve been telling you guys? Casa Rosa or something like that.” Rich said.
“No, I mean let’s really do something dude,” I pleaded, “We should totally drive to that barcade in Richmont and pick up chicks and shit.”
“Do you hear yourself man? College is coming soon enough, you can get yourself killed there,” Rich replied. “See, that’s what I’m saying Rich, we make all these crap songs about adventures and love and stupid things but we never actually do them,” I yelled.
“Willoughs, how about this: my sister’s friend Rebecca is having a party this weekend over at Greenpoint. Since you want to have this out of body experience so badly, we can go there scope out the college chicks, drink, smoke, whatever. You’ll get a piece of the college experience before actually entering college. And I know some Mexicans live in that area so there’s your diversity quotient all in one!” Rich proclaimed.
You see, one thing about Rich is that every time I get an idea, he always has the solution up his sleeve all the while. Why couldn’t he mention this before he mentioned that dumb Mexican restaurant crap, I don’t know. Who eats at a restaurant for excitement, right? Or maybe he saved this suggestion for last because he knows I hate parties. The whole situation is awkward, you know?
And by parties, I mean house parties. Like it was somewhat cool in the 90’s but kids nowadays don’t know what a good party is anymore. Everyone just stands around drinking from red cups, grinds, or go full throttle and fuck. The next day you hear of people who drank too much and vomited, police arriving to break any would-be fun, or if you stick around long enough you hear Janice got pregnant. No one really goes to enjoy themselves anymore.
I’ll tell you the best party I’ve been perhaps even the only party I’ve ever been to other than those birthday parties thrown by my parents. You know the one. Five year old kid with water balloons and punch and too much cake. Yeah those. But anyhow, the best party I’ve ever been to was thrown by Lutherans, now they know how to party.
You see my mom made friends with this new girl’s mom who moved into the neighborhood, Lucy was her name, and her family. Well Lucy’s family were Lutherans and had started to make friends at the local church and Lucy’s mom wanted her to have more friends and whatnot so they decided to throw a party so Lucy could get more acclimated to the neighborhood. They invited all the Lutheran church kids, Ivan the weird kid down the block and me. Of course I didn’t want to go because I hate parties but of course my mother accepted the invitation for me and there I was.
See Lucy wasn’t that bad looking. She could actually be described as cute. She had short brown hair and all these cute little freckles around her nose. Sue me for thinking freckles are cute. But the thing about Lucy was that she was so terribly shy and awkward, that even saying hi to her seemed to give her a heart attack. However when her folks finally left us bunch of kids alone in the basement is when everyone started having fun. The Lutheran kids actually played good music, current music and danced! And I mean really danced, not the stupid grinding and twerking dances that people seem so fond of these days. Like they actually incorporated aerobics and shit in their dancing. They faced their partners in dancing and you actually had to have moves in the dancing.
I had so much fun dancing and learning how to dance, that the lack of alcohol and Lucy’s awkwardness didn’t even matter. We even played pin-the –tail on the donkey and it was a blast. Now you know a party has to be good if someone gets excited playing that. But I digress.
Sure Rich had a great idea with the party and even though part of me didn’t want to go, it just felt like something I should do. So of course how did I reply to him?
“Let’s do it man, I’m totally down. You know I love parties!”
Rich smirked to himself and continued flipping his magazine.
See, I knew this was a bad idea. I felt it right before Rich and I left, but did he listen to me? No.
“C’mon Willoughs, stop being a pussy and man up! You’re the one who wanted to go out!” Rich pleaded.
So here I am, standing in the corner by myself as usual. Rich took one girl upstairs and God knows how long they’re going to be. Rich’s sister Jolie left early with her jerk of a boyfriend. Rebecca, the girl who hosted this stupid party, is chucking up her dignity in the backyard. Great. Some party.
Then the worst of it happened.
I was standing there and considering joining the stoner kids for a hit when this girl fell onto me, spilling my drink over the both of us. “Watch where you’re going, jerk!” she exclaimed.
“Excuse me? You fell onto me!” I grunted under her. This girl didn’t seem to know how to get up and every time she attempted, she fell closer and harder onto my stomach which made me want to rethink that quesadilla from earlier. “Maybe, maybe I wouldn’t have fallen onto you if you l-looked where you were g-going!” she stated.
Just my luck, another drunk. “Okay, off you go,” I shoved her off my stomach which tripped up this other guy. “Dude what’s your problem? Nobody knows personal space any more, you see back in my day…” he started until Jerry from the debate team escorted him away. Drunks, right?
I looked over to the girl now that I had a better view of her but the poor thing was totally gone. She snuggled up into a fetal position on the floor with this interesting smile on her face. I pushed her mass of raven curls from her face and noticed her eyes were closed. I could’ve just left her there. I probably should have but the way she just seemed so vulnerable got to me. I mean if my little sister was balled up onto the floor at some party like that, I would want someone to be nice to her too and make sure she was alright.
I tried to pick her up, but to no avail, we both ended up crashing on the floor again. I don’t know why for the life of me I couldn’t pick her up, she wasn’t some huge girl or anything, and she was actually pretty tiny all considering. However, sure enough this woke her up.
“Honestly? I told you to watch where you’re going!” she exclaimed and then she clocked me. This tiny girl clocked me hard! I mean I literally saw stars. I clutched my nose as blood seeped my fingers. Thankfully Rich came down right around that same time I’m sure my broken nose laid in my hands.
“Willoughs buddy, are you okay? Hold your head down man, who did this to you? Sit down man,” he proclaimed worriedly. One thing I can say about Rich is that he always shows up on time. Not necessarily when you want him to, but when he’s supposed to be there. His girl Trish or whatever ran to get me an ice pack but the sight of the blood, nauseated me all of a sudden at that moment and I puked just a bit into my hands.
“Relax man, you’re good,” Rich reassured me and patted my back as my head went reeling.
I looked up at that moment and saw the curly-headed girl. She had these huge brown doe eyes and looked at me with a mixture of confusion and worry. Her sort of mocha skin almost seemed flushed from what I thought to be sympathy. Interesting.
Before I could muster the energy to ask her name or even nudge Rich as to the culprit of my broken nose, she gave a penitent look and scampered away. Or maybe it seemed like she scampered away because how could she really do that when she couldn’t stand up by herself a few minutes ago? But then my head started reeling again, and then I passed out.
Crap. I didn’t even get her name.