Maybe I am writing this.  I haven't yet told my agent that I've abandoned my BEFORE 17 proposal (for now).  I can't seem to make myself work on that thing.  I have a block against it. My editor wants me to finish it, my agent wants me to write a proposal (minimally), but it wasn't my first-choice project.  I've only been doing it because they want me to.  And now I'm having a secret rebellion and writing something else. 

I am probably being very stupid.

The thing is, I haven't enjoyed writing for a long, long time.  I mean, my FREEFALL revisions were gratifying and I felt very accomplished when I was done with them.  It always comes back to Seth, doesn't it?  But writing new stuff?  There just hasn't been any joy for ages.  Not until Saturday when I started this.  So, I'll see where it goes.  The cynic in me gives it another week or two before I start over-thinking things and sabotaging myself again.  But the last time I felt this excited to write something was when I started FREEFALL.  And, well, that worked out pretty well for me in the end, didn't it?   I can't help feeling that I was meant to write this.


In the morning, I shower, get dressed, and take my time getting ready.  My usual routine.  I don’t join my family until I’m totally put together.  The parents joke that they haven’t seen me without makeup since I was thirteen. I’m pretty sure I was actually twelve, though.

After I finish blow-drying, I spot a mark—an actual hickey—on my neck.  It’s small, barely there, but seeing it makes me want to hurt someone.  I separate my blonde hair into sections and get it all sleek-looking with my huge curling iron.  Then I hold the scalding, metal barrel against my neck for about a half second so that the tiny hickey is covered up with an inch-long burn. 

I’m ready now.