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Burn Baby is in the vault. It’s polished and covered and waiting. Release date for my latest young adult novel is December 11th. Before the cover reveal and other events coming down the pike, I thought I would sneak peek it. I mean it IS only 105 days to go before the BURN BABY BOOK BIRTHDAY!!!

Pssst. This is NOT the cover for BURN BABY. You will have to stand by to see that. (-:

Pssst. This is NOT the cover for BURN BABY. You will have to stand by to see that. (-:

I know I asked some of my readers if they would like to help out in the cover reveal, or with excerpts, interviews, what have you. I have a list. If you’re on it, you will be contacted eventually.

For me, this waiting game is the hardest part about being an author. I seem to get SO very far away from my books before they see the bookshelf. Once I’m done with everything, quite often IT’S A WRAP and I am on to the next project and the next project and the next project. Burn Baby has fallen victim to this forward marching momentum, like all the others before it. But it’s also the book I’m most proud of. It was, to my mind, a bit of an underdog. It deals with some touchy issues. I’m so glad it found a home and I really hope it gets a nice reception when that home (CURIOSITY QUILLS) pushes it out into the wide world beyond its front doors.

As mentioned, how about a short excerpt? Because it IS Thursday, after all. (-:

In this extremely short glimpse into Burn Baby the main character, Francis Fripp, is to meet the new girl for a date of sorts. Because of his baggage, he’s convinced she’s not that into him…that he will be stood up. He can’t believe that anyone would like him. Ever. Because of his social status, which is a direct result of the huge amount of scarring he received when his abusive father torched him years earlier, he is a boy of zero confidence. Rachel Higgins? She couldn’t possibly like Francis. Right?

ENJOY…

Since I have nowhere else to go and nothing else to do, I head straight to the band shell. I take a seat in the bleachers facing the stage.

Probably the worst idea I ever had. I’m there in five minutes. This gives me a long time to be alone with the negative thoughts inside my head. I get to sit here and wonder if she plans on ditching me. And if she doesn’t—if she actually intends on coming—what will she wear? How will she smell? Does she always smell the same? Will we kiss? I totally can’t take this kind of pressure.

I know she isn’t coming. I feel like I’ve been here forever. What am I going to tell Trig? That I was set up? That I waited for hours in the park for a bitch who didn’t show up? That he was right?
I can’t take it. I feel like a jittery mess.

“Wouldn’t it be so awesome to star in a performance of Streetcar on this stage?” Rachel says, startling me back to reality. She walks out onto the centre of the band shell stage. Her heels clicking on the wooden stage are intoxicating. Each click holds me rapt. “Ooh. Who would you be? I would so be Blanche. Blanche Dubois is like the best character to build your acting chops on. I played her in grade eight. I was the best washed-up, lush bitch the Riverside Elementary School stage had ever seen!” She hugs herself and twirls. She’s wearing a skirt and I wonder if it was on purpose. The twirl looks perfect.

“How did you get up there?” I say from the front row of the bleachers as I shake myself and straighten up. I jump up and approach the stage. How could I have possibly thought she stood me up?

“Stage left, mah dawlink,” Rachel bellows. “Always stage left.”

She laughs and time stops for me. That’s actually a laugh I could listen to. On repeat.

That’s all for now. Just a taste. Burn Baby was written during one of the 72hr Muskoka Novel Marathon events I participated in.