Having covered A Sane Woman and U-town, I’m going to move on to my third novel (first draft completed, project now on hold indefinitely, no fixed title). My plan is to post a scene from each chapter (each in a separate post — not all at once).
I don’t think I’m going to restart the project any time soon, but there are some good scenes in there. I like to go back and look at it from time to time.
This is from the first section, called “Always Crashing in the Same Car.” It’s not directly connected to the novel that follows, but it leads into it, both in plot and themes. I guess it’s one of those prologues that have such a bad reputation. It stands alone pretty well — I think I’ll post the whole thing here as soon as I clean it up.
Also, this was the first story in my plan — for some reason — to write stories named after three songs on David Bowie’s album Low. I have no idea why I have this plan (which been pn my To Do list for years now). It’s not because of any particular enthusiasm for the album, which is not in my Top Five David Bowie Albums list (or it wouldn’t be if I had such a list).
The other two songs are “Sound and Vision” and “A New Career in a New Town.” I haven’t written those stories yet, though it just occurs to me now that the latter would be a good subtitle for Stevie One
Anyway, here are seven paragraphs.
Coming around the final bend to my house, Ruth stopped suddenly, and after a second I saw what she saw and stopped also.
Celia and the mystery girl were sitting on the beach, talking. I was about to walk forward, to let them know we were there, but at that moment the mystery girl stood up and held out her hand to Celia. My friend looked uncertain, which was unusual for her.
Before I could resume my forward motion, the girl shucked off her denim vest and dropped it to the sand. She didn’t have her leather jacket on.
She looked healthy and invigorated, her attention focused entirely on Celia. It was hard to imagine that she’d been in a motorcycle accident and then unconscious just an hour or two earlier.
Then, making the decision for us about to whether to approach them or not, the girl slowly unbuttoned her shirt and dropped it to the sand as well. She wore a low-cut black bra that showed the pale upper slopes of her breasts in the moonlight, and that apparently made Celia’s decision for her. She reached out, took the girl’s hand and stood up.
They embraced, and then, very slowly, they started to move, first swaying and then, gradually, they started dancing.
As they moved slowly across the sand, embracing tightly, they turned so that the girl was looking at us over Celia’s shoulder. We dropped to the sand, but I was sure she saw us in the moment before we could react. Her only reaction was a faint smile.