The online journal Literal Latte has just posted their current issue, containing my story Grateful, Thankful, which won second prize in their 2006 fiction contest. This excerpt from my novel-in-progress finds Prue coping with the competing pressures of teenage sexuality and academic achievement. (Sex in bathrooms is becoming the King Charles’s Head of this book; it just seems to find its way into whatever I am thinking.) Here’s the opener:
I could have avoided all that trouble if only I had remembered the capital of North Dakota. Normally I took schoolwork seriously, but it had been a late night at band practice and I decided to give myself a pass on memorizing stupid places I would never live. I couldn’t see my mother moving us anywhere shotguns were more popular than cappuccino. I dropped my regulation #2 pencil and bent down to fetch it, so that on the upswing I could skim a peek at Ryan McFarrell’s test paper. He winked at me, those blue eyes wide under streaky blond surfer-hair (he’d just moved to Boston from Santa Barbara and hadn’t perfected our cold-weather scowl yet), and moved his elbow to give me a better view. His dimbulb generosity would’ve been enough to blow our cover, but what really tipped off Mr. Hollister was that we’d both spelled it “Bizmark,” like a corporate logo. That’s how my first moments alone with Ryan were spent on a bench outside the principal’s office. It started as a “meet cute,” but it didn’t end that way.
Read the whole story here.