Thursday, November 29, 2007

FAIRYTALE BRIDE

COMING DECEMBER 5TH- DOWNLOAD FROM FICTIONWISE or THE WILD ROSE PRESS

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

WINNER OF THE THROUGH THE GARDEN GATE CONTEST

FAIRYTALE BRIDE- Coming soon to the Wild Rose Press.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Through the Garden Gate/ Cover: Fairytale Bride

I don't know what else to say other than 'thank you.' My story has been interpreted perfectly in this cover.

Michelle Chambers
Ripples in the water- Available now
Fairytale Bride- coming soon (December 2007) to The Wild Rose Press
Blurb:
To those lucky enough to hear, the Blue Moon may speak at midnight, and it may grant your wish…On one such night, in sheer desperation, Maddie Elliott set aside scepticism and doubt to make a wish under the magic of the Blue Moon’s light…
The magic brings Maddie, through a secret garden gate-to a world unknown to her, but whose sights and sounds overwhelm her senses with strange familiarity-to her heart’s desire. To her wish.
Incomprehension and confusion fill her heart when she meets the Earl of Ruglen. The Law of Attraction couldn’t possibly be wrong, yet how could she long for someone whom she wholeheartedly despised? Surely, the Blue Moon was mistaken.

EXCERPT:
“A mouse?”
Lord Ruglen lifted the candle, he held, high between them, and Maddie saw, in the briefest of moments, the challenging lift of his eyebrow refuting her claim before he blew out the flame. Her eyes adjusted again to the moonlit shadows, and focussed on the brightness of his.
“Leave us,” Lord Ruglen commanded Rose.
Maddie shifted her gaze behind Lord Ruglen’s bare chest, and nodded the request into Rose’s wide and querying eyes.
The door closed softly, and Maddie returned her gaze to Lord Ruglen’s steady own. She pulled the sheet consciously tighter about her naked body.
“Those bruises on your neck did not come from a mouse,” Lord Ruglen stated quietly.
“No,” Maddie said, with a slow shake of her head. “I believe it was a rat, my lord.”
“You jest, at a time such as this?”
“And what would you have me do, my lord? Turn to you for comfort, and find none?” She hung her head, hiding the tears falling down her face.
“What happened?”
A low sound echoed through the room and it took her a few moments to realise she was laughing.
“Would you like details, my lord? Why not wait a few hours. I am sure your choice of lover will be good enough to supply you with every little detail.” Her voice hardened. “Was I the spoils of another wager, my lord? Is that why you showed me such consideration tonight? Danced with me. Make me believe you…” She faltered, then taking a deep breath addressed him once more: “You do not want me, I understand that, but should I decide to take a lover allow me the courtesy of choosing him myself.”
Lord Ruglen’s eyes narrowed dangerously. “You can not think me capable of such depravity.”
“I can, and I do.”
“Why? Because you are determined to believe the worse of me?”
“As you do of me?” Maddie parried coldly. “To you I am nothing but a wager already won, but I feel, my lord, even if you do not. I hurt-”
“Did he…hurt you?” Her eyes flew to the brightness of his.
“What?”
“Did he hurt you?”
Maddie turned away from him. Her shoulders shook lightly as she began to cry. She felt him even before she heard him step towards her. His warmth engulfed her, and this time she couldn’t resist, she leaned back into his naked arms.
“You hurt me,” she whispered.
“I know.”

Saturday, November 3, 2007

A Thought Shared

Ripples in the Water is one of those books where the inspiration came from absolutely nowhere. I had just given birth to my first child and was on maternity leave-I used to work at the Westeinde Ziekenhuis, a hospital in the Hague, as a therapy radiographer.
On a night I suddenly awoke, just like that. No reason, or rhyme, with three names circling with absolute clarity in my head: Claerdal, Celeste and Guy Fawkes. I was also quite aware, at that moment, that the object of the exercise would be to link them somehow; the result being my debut novel, Ripples in the Water.
I have an insatiable love of history, and it really doesn’t matter who’s history, but what I strive to find is the story running parallel to whatever historical event I choose to write about. History will never change, but there will always be someone else’s truth, and that is what I wish to convey.
Ripples in the Water is an historical piece, but it’s also full of intrigue, suspense and explores the influence of coincidence. Here are what two reviewers had to say about Ripples in the Water:

‘This novel, written by Ms. Michelle Chambers, has very detailed, interesting scenarios which are spell-binding. The more I read, the more (and faster) I wanted to read...’ Brenda Talley, The Romance Studio

‘Michelle Chambers cast well-rounded characters that weave an intriguing tale...’ Linda L., Fallen Angel Reviews

The power of coincidence, the Yin and Yang of life, the Law of Attraction, these are all premises upon which I base my novels, and combined with the somewhat darker side of human nature I aim to give the reader a more in-depth, intense look at love. I dissect love into the spectrum I believe it is. As white light is a spectrum of colour, I believe love to be a spectrum of emotion. Sometimes ugly, sometimes beautiful, but love nonetheless.
I recently entered, and won, a short-story competition organised by my publishers, The Wild Rose Press. The story is called Fairytale Bride. A tale of time-travel and Regency England, yet exploring the premise of the Law of Attraction. As yet, its still in the editing stage, as is my contemporary novel, Blood of His Fathers, but I hope to have release dates for both books pretty soon.
We all have a history, and history plays an important role in my stories. My characters have history. Their opinions, behaviour, thoughts, sometimes in the extreme, are influenced, as we are, by history- whether that be race, religion, etc- and/or experience, though I do like happy endings. In my books, at least, I can control that.
I’ve lived in Holland, now, for more than fifteen years and still love it. I came initially from England for a year, but life had other plans for me, and up until now I’m quite content with the direction its taken. Two beautiful, healthy children, and a wonderful, understanding man. Well, he had to be when I said I wanted to write. I took up the challenge five years ago and its wonderful to finally see the fruits of my labour, and love.

A huge thank you to The Wild Rose Press for making my dreams come true.

Michelle

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Finally won something

Fairytale Bride has won the Garden Gate contest. Finally, I've won something.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Treacle Toffee and Ripples in the Water

November 5th fast approaches, and in England its a date greatly remembered with fireworks, treacle toffee and the burning of effigies depicting Guy Fawkes, the most noted terrorist in English history, who tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament back in 1604. The infamous Gunpowder Plot.

Ripples in the Water is a story that takes the reader back in time to the Protestant court of King James, to the ambitious courtiers vying for the king's favour, to the daughter of a Catholic traitor condemned to die for her father's part in the Gunpowder Plot.

So, I say- cuddle up to the fire with a bag of treacle toffee this November 5th and enjoy a winter's tale: Ripples in the Water

Michelle Chambers

Available from: http://www.amazon.com/
http://www.thewildrosepress.com/

Friday, September 28, 2007

A winter's tale

Remember, remember the fifth of November
Of gunpowder, treason and plot
Of intrigue and romance and ambition
At King James' court

And Guy Fawkes and Catesby and others
For theirs is a tale of woe
Captured in Ripples in the Water
A twist in a tale of old

Michelle Chambers- Ripples in the Water
Available from: http://www.thewildrosepress.com
http://www.amazon.com

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Great Reviews

Ripples in the Water available NOW!

Read what they're saying about it... 4.5 Hearts from The Romance Studio; 5 Angels from Fallen Angel Reviews.

Thank you Brenda Talley (TRS). Thankyou Linda L. (FAR)

http://theromancestudio.com/reviews/reviews/rippleschambers.htm

http://www.fallenangelreviews.com/2007/August/LindaL-RipplesInTheWater.htm

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

YouTube

See me on YouTube...LOL

Michelle Chambers- Ripples in the Water

http://www.youtube.com/user/miwidenhaag

Local girl; Local news

Thrilled!

Michelle Chambers- Ripples in the Water
Read an excerpt from Ripples in the Water:
The coach door having been thrown open now rattled hard in the wind. Its passenger, undaunted by the thought of any discomfort, battled the blustery weather.
“Davy, are you all right? What happened?” he called above the shriek of the storm.
“I'm fine, my lord,” Davy shot back. “Something spooked the horses.”
“What was it?”
“Some dead animal or other I think. It's still there in the middle of the carriageway.” He nodded towards the sprawled, black, mass.
Seizing the lighted wick the Earl of Hawkridge edged towards the shapeless form. “Be careful, my lord,” Davy yelled. He tightened his grip on Mistral’s reins.
The light parted the darkness, and revealed the still figure of a woman lying on the highway. Lord Hawkridge hastened forward, and dropped to his knees. Anxiously he felt for signs of life. A low moan escaped her lips. She was alive. Though barely, he thought. Oblivious to the rain lashing down on him he removed his cloak, and draped it over the faintly trembling body. She moaned again, and in one swift movement he‘d scooped her into his arms, and brushed past Davy’s stunned countenance.
“Jesus, Mary and Joseph,” Davy exclaimed. “It's a woman,” he said, concluding the obvious. “What’s she doing out here, in the middle of nowhere, and at this ungodly hour?” He hastened after Lord Hawkridge.
Lord Hawkridge placed the woman in the warmth of his carriage and stared down at the bruised face partially covered by dark tendrils of her hair. She was so slight he marvelled how she’d thus far survived the bitter weather.
“I do not know, Davy,” he said giving answer, though more to himself than his coachman. His hand instinctively recoiled from the woman’s hair as she moaned again, and turned her amber coloured gaze unexpectedly onto his. Something stirred deep within him. A feeling he’d long forgotten; a feeling he’d not experienced with anyone since Anne-Marie. Anne-Marie. Lord Hawkridge briefly closed his eyes. How long had it been, since her death?
Fear widened the woman’s eyes still further as recognition seemed to dawn in their depths. “No,” she screamed. “No.” She clawed frantically at the face above hers, her nails leaving their mark. Lunging past Lord Hawkridge she reached for the coach door eliciting an oath from him in his surprise.
“You little fool,” he ground out, and pulled her roughly back to him. “Would you kill yourself?” She struggled feverishly in his arms.
“Let me go,” she cried.
“Be still.” His terse command cut through her bewildered brain, shocking her into silence. Her defiance short-lived she sank wearily against his chest the tiniest of sobs rising in her throat.
“Let me be,” she pleaded softly. “Please…let me be.”
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Monday, July 30, 2007

Review for Ripples in the Water

To be honest I'd not expected such a great review for Ripples in the Water. I guess, as many authors, I wasn't entirely satisfied with my story and felt it could have been better- were my characters complete, was the plot good enough, did I catch all the typos.

But I needn't have worried, and I heartily thank Brenda Talley at The Romance Studio for her fantastic review.

...the sensual scenes were dynamic, but infrequent...LOL

Michelle Chambers

To read the full review: www.theromancestudio.com/reviews/reviews/rippleschambers.htm

Friday, June 22, 2007

PROMO- Ripples in the Water

1609. Three years after seven Catholic conspirators are executed alongside Guy Fawkes for their part in the infamous Gunpowder plot...

Celeste Darwent trudges the lonely, barren wilds of Hawkridge. Sold to the Captain of the Black Moth for a princely sum she escapes this fate unaware her life is forever destined to be a part of his no matter where she should run, or how far, for she no longer has memory of their past, or the son she's borne, but for whom her body no longer yearns...

until she reaches Teigne Hall, and is confronted with a man bearing a most remarkable resemblance to the Captain of the Black Moth.

Darby Manderville, Earl of Hawkridge, had thought to rescue an unfortunate beggar from certain death on the moor, but discovery of a long lost family heirloom sewn within the hem of her dress revises that opinion. Resentment, prejudice and contempt soon take the place of his compassion...

The daughter of a traitor, Celeste Darwent comes to Teigne Hall a haunted woman, yet, her presence ultimately shatters Darby's life as, unwittingly, she unlocks a secret best left alone. A secret whose affect, like Ripples in the Water, influence both their lives.Yet, she, too, carries a secret; one that, should it be discovered, would see her hung...

Lord Hawkridge will, in the end, need choose between his love for Celeste, and his duty to his king; and determine if he could truly be father to his brother's child.

Read an excerpt: You, who must despise me my contempt

Her fingers tightened about the door handle.
"It would be wrong of me now to concern you further with my affairs," she said evenly, "you, who must despise me my contempt."
"I do not despise you," Darby replied levelly.
"Your manner suggests otherwise." She heard his tread draw near, and steeled herself against the intensity that was him.
"To retain my sanity," he said his voice taut, "I cannot allow myself to think about something I cannot have."
The reflection in his voice pierced deep into her heart, and a small cry bubbled forth from her lips. Her heart had been closed to him, yet he'd found a way to unlock it, throwing her emotions once more into confusion. Why must he tell her this? She could feel his warmth around her drawing her to him like a blanket. Their blanket.
Mustering her strength she stepped back into the room, and distanced herself from him. "It didn't occur to me that you were sincere in your feelings for me," she said her voice scarcely above a whisper.
"I gave you no reason to believe it," Darby admitted. He moved again towards her, but she stared ahead of her, her manner determined. She didn't wish to be reminded of a time she could never know again.
"You owed me no consideration, my lord," she replied, "nor did I expect it. We shared a strong attraction for each other, and I, too, am guilty of what happened between us."
"Guilt? Is that why you refuse me? Is that why you run from me?" His breath stirred her hair. Celeste closed her eyes, and clasped her hands tightly against her stomach. The simplicity of his questions conveyed the anguish from which they'd been expressed. She turned slowly to face him. His uttered words still lingering in the air, his vulnerability laid rather unexpectedly bare to her.
Digital release- April 27th, 2007
Available in PRINT- June 22nd, 2007
http://www.thewildrosepress.com

Michelle Chambers
www.miwi-carpediem.blogspot.com

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Don't Forget...

For a classical, emotional, romantic read download Ripples in the Water- released April 2007

http://www.fictionwise.com

http://www.thewildrosepress.com

Or buy the book: release date June 22nd 2007- ISBN 1-60154-053-1
Michelle

(see blog April 19 for excerpt)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Tagged!

I've been tagged by Clover Autrey to tell you 8 things about me you never knew before. So, here goes:

1. My middle name is Patrice.

2. I'm extremely allergic to strawberries, apples, plums and other soft fruit- so I could be murdered with fruit, and my death would still be attributed to natural causes! (Ha-Ha!)

3. I've a warped sense of humour (- see nr.2)

4. I'm afraid of heights.

5. October 2000, I stood at the top of the World Trade Centre in NY with my hubby and innocently commented, as I watched helicopters circle below us: what if one of those should crash into the building... a year later... Go figure.

6. I've a black belt in taekwon-do (2nd Dan)

7. I need my space. Can't have too many people around me, all the time.

8. I grew up in Bury, Lancashire, the setting of the Wild Rose Press' Historical Contest.


In case I tag you, here are the rules:
1) Each player starts with 8 random facts or habits about themselves.
2) People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their 8 things with a copy of these rules.
3) At the end of your blog you need to choose 8 people to get tagged and list their names.
4) Don't forget to leave them a note saying they've been tagged.


Tag you're it!

I tag Wild Rose Press Authors: Kathleen M. Basi, Teresa Reasor, Pamella Roller, Diana Bold, Leslie Dicken, tarah Scott, Catherine Cairns, Janet Halpin- my apologies if you've already been tagged.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

IDEAL

Today, I decided to develop a slogan for myself, and came up with IDEAL- an acronym describing both my work and the cover art of my books (current and future).

IntenseDramaticEmotionalAweinspiringLucent

Anyway, that was today. Tomorrow is another ideal day.

Michelle

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Release of Ripples in the Water, April 27th 2007

It is 1609, and Celeste Darwent trudges the lonely, barren wilds of Hawkridge. Sold to the Captain of the Black Moth for a princely sum Celeste escapes her fate unaware her life is forever destined to be a part of his no matter where she should run, or how far for she no longer has memory of their past, or the son she's borne, but for whom her body no longer yearns...

Until she reaches Teigne Hall, and is confronted with a man bearing a most remarkable resemblance to the Captain of the Black Moth.

To his mind Darby Manderville, Earl of Hawkridge, has rescued an unfortunate beggar from certain death on the moor, but when he discovers a lost family heirloom sewn within the hem of her dress resentment, prejudice and contempt soon take the place of his compassion.

Celeste Darwent comes to Teigne Hall a haunted woman; a woman without a past, yet her presence will shatter Darby's life as, unwittingly, she unlocks a secret best left alone. A secret that, like Ripples in the Water, reverberates through their lives. Yet, Celeste, too, carries a secret; one that, should it be discovered, would see her hung...

Darby will, in the end, need choose between his love for Celeste, and his duty to his king; and determine if could truly be father to his brother's child.


Read an excerpt:

Her fingers tightened about the door handle.
“It would be wrong of me now to concern you further with my affairs,” she said evenly, “you, who must despise me my contempt.”
“I do not despise you,” Darby replied levelly.
“Your manner suggests otherwise.” She heard his tread draw near, and steeled herself against the intensity that was him.
“To retain my sanity,” he said his voice taut, “I cannot allow myself to think about something I cannot have.”
The reflection in his voice pierced deep into her heart, and a small cry bubbled forth from her lips. Her heart had been closed to him, yet he’d found a way to unlock it, throwing her emotions once more into confusion. Why must he tell her this? She could feel his warmth around her drawing her to him like a blanket. Their blanket
Mustering her strength she stepped back into the room, and distanced herself from him. “It didn’t occur to me that you were sincere in your feelings for me,” she said her voice scarcely above a whisper.
“I gave you no reason to believe it,” Darby admitted. He moved again towards her, but she stared ahead of her, her manner determined. She didn’t wish to be reminded of a time she could never know again.
“You owed me no consideration, my lord,” she replied, “nor did I expect it. We shared a strong attraction for each other, and I, too, am guilty of what happened between us.”
“Guilt? Is that why you refuse me? Is that why you run from me?” His breath stirred her hair. Celeste closed her eyes, and clasped her hands tightly against her stomach. The simplicity of his questions conveyed the anguish from which they’d been expressed. She turned slowly to face him. His uttered words still lingering in the air, his vulnerability laid rather unexpectedly bare to her.

Digital release- April 27th, 2007
Print release- June 22nd, 2007

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Yours sincerely, Most Scared

I'm scared. Really. My first book is due to be released by the Wild Rose Press, and I'm petrified. Doubts and uncertainties plague my mind, and I feel I want to write the whole darn story again...

But... It's a good story. I love Ripples in the Water- it's the type of story I like to read myself, and I did write it for me. Now, I'm sharing it with others perhaps more discerning than myself, who will ultimately rip it apart and dissect the contents. Ouch! Am I ready to be critiqued? I have to be because I'm a writer- a good writer- and it's all part and parcel of being a writer.

It's time to stand up, and be judged by the seasoned readers of romance, and take any and all commentary on the chin. The question is: Will I remain standing?

Comeback for the release date of Ripples in the Water.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

A day is a day, is a day, is a day...

I'm not one for holidays- to me, a day is a day, is a day, is a day, despite any label attached to it. Take today for example: Easter. Though not overly religious I'm not ignorant of its signifcance to those who are, and its pertinence. Yet, I see it as merely another day. I go through life enjoying it as much as the next person but without the need to celebrate stipulated dates because it's generally expected that I do. And as much as I understand the significance, and pertinence of said holidays I remain untouched by them. Deeply, sincerely, emotionally untouched. I am numb to every aspect of celebration, but I am Not a dull person. Nor am I unintelligent, nor am I shallow. And no, I don't need a shrink.

I enjoy every day of my life with those I love; just don't try to sell me one day above another in its importance. Every day is important, and I will enjoy that day on a small scale, whether or not many try to persuade, or dictate, how I spend that day.

You can still be lonely at a party.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Wow!

I can't write... well, obviously I can, but I mean I can't concentrate. Not long enough anyway to put two coherent words together let alone an entire sentence. And the reason? The cover design for Ripples in the Water.

I received it last night, and I can't take my eyes of it. It's brilliant, fantastic, great, wonderful- and all the other superlatives you can think of to describe a beautiful piece of art. I'm bias. Of course. My first cover design for my first novel.

Yet, what touches me is the artist's perception of my work. She's translated my story- its intensity, emotion and feeling- in her use of colour; and the perfect setting. My heroine would feel right at home in this setting. Perfect.

I look at this cover design with an immense feeling of pride and gratitude, and know it reflects the depth and sincerity of my work. I know you can't judge a book by its cover, but in this instance the combination is dynamic. A good cover, and a damn good read.

Don't believe me? Log on again for the release date, and see (read) for yourself.

I really ought to go now, and write, and I will- just not yet. Let me savour this moment... my first cover design for my first book. WOW!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Now, for the next step

What a feeling to know you've completed a job well done. Apart from some technical layouts my manuscript is practically ready to be submitted to the printers. What a feeling.

My editor at The Wild Rose Press, Katherine, really managed to get me to dig deep and revise my story better than I could have done without her guidelines, and at my first attempt, too. I looked in the mirror last night and thought: Yes. I can do this.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Back to work

I didn't realise how much I needed my break until I got back today from the countryside. It was great. No computer, no telephone, no disturbance. Pure pleasure with my children, and my partner. Now it's back to work if I'm to realise my ambitions of becoming a successful writer. At least the hard work is already done. The novel is written. All I need do is check, edit, revise and rewrite 300 pages. No problem. It's about a month's work, and it'll keep my mind busy while I wait for the verdict on my first novel that's still being dissected by my editor. I'm nervous. Revisions aren't easy and I'm scared she's going to want the novel revised again- or is it a case of me not being satisfied with my own work? I don't know. Anyway, I've a backup. The second book which I'll be submitting to the Crimson line at The Wild Rose Press at the end of the month. Wish me luck- on both accounts.

But not to leave my editor out of the picture I'm completing a second story for the English Tea Rose line as we speak- er, chat.

See ya!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Time for a break

It has taken me the most part of a month to revise, edit, change and tweak my manuscript. Not forgetting making time for my children: mum; where is...? can I...? how long...? will you...?- you get the picture. When you're busy suddenly everyone needs you- including husbands, wives and partners. The selfish gene raised its ugly head, including mine, but hey, we survived this adjustment in our lives. It can only get better, right?

Ripples in the Water is my first novel, and of course I want to tweak and change and edit and revise until the story is the best it can be- my editor saw its potential, and I guess I'm afraid to let her down. But now I think it's time for a break. A whole month of snapping at the kids and being irritable with my partner has come to an end, and I can relax. We can all relax. So I'm off to enjoy this weekend with my partner, and the kids are off to their grandparents. I'm back on track!

See ya!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Thanks for the invite

I got a letter inviting me to go out for a meal with my ex-colleagues. Nothing wrong in that, I hear you say. Yet, still it was a surprise because I was never popular with my ex-colleagues. I was never in with the 'in crowd' or ever a part of any particular social cloister. I was a loner. My choice and theirs. We never mingled, so to receive an invitation out of the blue I have to ask myself, why?
I'd thought I was rid of them that I could finally live my life without feeling I owed an explanation for my choices or my beliefs. They suffocated me, and now I breathe. But, do my ex-colleagues interest me enough to seek their company? I don't think so. To accept this invitation for the one or two I would like to see and be saddled with the ten or more I utterly could do without is no longer a compulsion. I'm no longer that person. I am able to say no, and it feels great.
Still, I could go and wax lyrical about my upcoming book release. Nah! Even that incentive isn't enough to get me in the same room as my ex-colleagues. I no longer work with them, I don't care for quite a few and the rest I find uninspiring and dull. So, thanks for the invite, but no thanks!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Taekwon-Do

Today was my first taekwon-do lesson after the holidays. Great! It was fantastic to punch, kick and sweat out all the frustrations, stress and flu symptoms picked up over the last few weeks. My joints ache but my mind is clear. Now is the time to write.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Read the question!

How many times have I told my children to always be sure to read questions carefully? One careless mistake, a misread word or two could completely alter the context and meaning of said question. I really should take my own advice.
I'm fortunate to have found a publisher for my novel and always wanting to make a good impression I diligently fill out their forms only to be requested to correct one part. I'd messed up! What a prize idiot!
Right now I need to go look up the meaning of excerpt and blurb- and learn the difference! Good impression, huh? Not!!!!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

(Oh, allright then)- The Comedy

What a stupid and neurotic thing to do! Literally climbing the wall to escape him. Him was a young man I knew at college and worshipped from afar. He, tall, gorgeous in all the right places, intelligent, popular. Me, short, pleasantly plump in all the wrong places, intelligent, nerd. It would have never worked. I knew that, not that I truly wanted it to but I had to tell my friends, didn’t I? I forgot friends, for all their best intentions, find it enormously difficult to keep, what they referred to as, ‘juicy gossip’, to themselves. It defied all the scientific realms of will power and the unspoken bond of trust and loyalty.
Anyway they told him and I withered. It was as if his very knowing he had an admirer in me was enough to devoid me of my wits. And then having the entire college discover the object of my affection, my senses quickly followed.
My friends had no idea what to make of me. One minute we were talking quite amicably, comfortable in the knowledge my idol was nowhere in sight, when before they realised it I was attempting to scale the wall next to us. The windows above led to the library. The sight must have been comical certainly when I hastily said to the bemused faces gazing at me,
‘I wonder if that book’s in.’ But the reason for my apparent panic became obvious as tall, gorgeous in all the right places, intelligent and popular walked-by. He barely looked at me, gave me no acknowledgement. Even at the pinnacle of my humiliation I couldn’t grab his attention! How demoralising!
That my friends didn’t desert me at that moment is a miracle but I did notice later on I was seemingly always the last to learn about parties or happening social events. When I recall that moment I can’t help but cringe and be grateful I will never see anyone from college ever again. In fact it was this thought that dragged me through my remaining two years. The embarrassing years.
But now years later, it’s a new me, though it took quite sometime to reach the level of confidence I now have. Now and again it is but pure bravado what I feel but at such times I am reminded I could have been an older version of timid and insecure.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

The Tragedy

The telephone was swirled through the air before being struck with force against John’s head. Had it been a modern telephone constructed from light synthetic materials I’ve no doubt the result would have not been fatal but this telephone was of the generation that were solid, heavy and cumbersome with old-fashioned dials accessible only to finger nails or pencils, you know, the sort of telephones seen in old black and white films from the ‘40’s. As one of the few telephones in the vicinity it was frequently in use, though I can never remember it being anything but polished and pristine sitting high on a table in the living room like a statue on its pedestal. Except, of course, when it was used to bludgeon John to death. The sound it made as it connected to bone has never left me, or the horror on my grandmother’s face as realisation dawned through her drunken stupor at what she had done. They were both drunk. My grandmother and John. Fights were not uncommon. And this, quite simply, was a fight which ended in a tragedy.
But a tragedy for whom? John? Undoubtedly. A violent death, I suppose, can’t be considered anything other than tragic. Yet I have neither grieved his, nor considered it tragic. That’s because John’s death never really distressed me. I mean nothing emotional. No tears, no anger, no dramatic cry of ‘Why? Why? Why?’ Not then, not now. But how can I remain so unemotional knowing what I know? From the perception of a seven-year-old child watching her grandmother strike a fatal blow a certain numbness is expected, but I am no longer a child. I am an adult, forty something- old, and my numbness to those events has changed to impassiveness. I am older, wiser, capable of objective thought yet why can’t I pinpoint the emotion that would help me to close this chapter in my life.
Perhaps the tragedy is mine. Witnessing death at an early age and being left with its legacy of images and memories that demand a reaction I cannot give. Memories that in the course of time have not faded to nothing but remain persistent and haunting as the images in the darkness, that despite my best intentions, do succeed in making me wince.
I have feelings after all, even if it is of guilt.

Explains why I don't do comedy, huh?