I crawled into my bed, ruing the budget accommodation I’d hastily booked a few days before. Romance was the last thing on my mind. The bed shook, the walls throbbed and the screaming in the room next door would inspire the horror writers at Lexicon, the Science Fiction and Fantasy convention down the road – not to mention the manic laughter that followed every gut-curdling cry. (On second thoughts, maybe the horror writers were next door?)
Was it the rabid dancing downstairs that was making my mattress shake and undulate? Or just the music? Perhaps the band were part banshee…
Walking the dark streets of Taupo, I’d felt safer as I approached the drunks outside the nightclubs and bars under my hotel – better than the vehicle with tinted windows that had crawled past, peering at me. But with the whole place about to implode, I did what every writer does at 1 a.m. when there’s a party on downstairs.
I joined the melee on the dance floor and gyrated my heart out.
Nah, don’t be silly. Why waste an opportunity to write? I turned on my laptop. Okay, for a moment I did consider dancing, but hey, alone in a strange town with no one to knock on the door and demand dinner, a driving lesson, or a taxi service… why not write?
But sometimes the best intentions get waylaid and emails get in the way. But that day, yay, hooray, for emails!!!!
That very first email told me I was a finalist in the Romance Writers New Zealand Chapter Short Story Contest. Wow! Woot! Yay!!! 🙂
Celebration time! Yep, so I danced, but only in my room!
Bright and early, just a couple of hours later, one of my critique partners texted me to tell me she was a finalist too! Double reason to dance. Charlotte Jardine’s story is a classic contemporary romance that warms my heart each time I read it – nostalgia, summer days and golden sand.
Mine stars young adults with tricky pasts learning to trust again – and leather and fast motorbikes.
Both are set near the sea. So here’s a photo of the Charlotte and I near our local beach! (Actually, it’s been rainy this week, so this is a photo of us indoors!) We’re very lucky. Everywhere in New Zealand has a local beach – or thirty! And the contest? Well, all five finalists are waiting to hear back from the judge, who happens to be the editor for a well-known English Women’s magazine!!
**fist-pumps! Then coughs** Ahem, excuse the YA-speak!