Monday, March 11, 2013

Precious Things Teaser

I really like this little bit from the second chapter of Precious Things, my upcoming NA novel, so I decided to post a teaser!  No, this is not a *steamy* bit--there aren't any boys or kissing involved!--but it might still make a few book lovers squee!

To give a little context: My MC, Isabelle, planned to attend Georgetown or Johns Hopkins but lost her college fund at the last minute.  So now she's at community college, hoping she can get a scholarship out of there by the next semester.  She wants to take really difficult classes to impress scholarship committees, so she's trying to transfer out of this 100-level English class that starts in, like, a half-hour.  There's a huge line outside the registrar's office, she's been working at her dad's bakery since 6 A.M., it's a gazillion degrees out with no shade, AND she just had an awkward encounter with a cute guy.  So, basically, Isabelle feels like she's going to faint and can't stand in line a minute longer.  Okay, here we go...

I squeeze my eyes shut for a moment and think of all the heroines I read about when I was younger, the ones who sacrificed everything for whatever education they could get.  Elnora in Girl of the Limberlost, who walked three miles to school every day just to be ridiculed for her old-fashioned, worn-out clothes.  When she learned she had to pay for her books and tuition, and she didn’t have the money, she found a way to get it—by collecting and selling insect specimens from her beloved Limberlost Swamp.  Then there was Jane Eyre, who starved and shivered her way through her six years at Lowood charity school, and taught there for two more years for good measure.  And Anne Shirley (of Green Gables fame), who earned her teaching license in one year when it should have taken two, won a college scholarship, then gave it up to stay home and take care of Marilla, the woman who raised her.  Of course Anne did make it to college eventually, after a few years of hard work as a teacher.
Elnora, and Jane, and Anne would never have let one measly line at the registrar’s office get in their way.  And when I first read those books, I thought I might be like them someday.  But now?  Now I know I’m no heroine, because I look one more time from my speeding watch to the sluggish line, feel the bigger and bigger beads of sweat creep their way down my neck and under my shirt, think about a cold drink from a vending machine and an air-conditioned classroom… 
And walk away from the line, challenging classes and college scholarships be damned. 


  1. Oh, I love it. I love Anne Shirley, she's my hero. :) I can't wait to read this story!

  2. Love all those characters, especially Jane Eyre!

  3. Stephane, that was a GREAT teaser! Thanks for sharing!