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Have You Danced on a Couch in your Undies?

Me either.

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I’ve never danced on a couch in my underwear (yes, I just used a Risky Business reference), but inside my hermit heart there lurks a wistful longing that I’d had a good singing voice and the chops to belt something out in public. The one time I danced on a stage, I think I was five? I barfed on my tutu. 

I don’t even sing in the shower. 

I hum inside my head and sometimes rock out in my chair (by “rock out” I mean my shoulders move a little. I know, sad.)

The fun part of being me is that I get to let all my wishes out with my characters. They are taller, they have better hair and they can sing—in or out of the shower. So writing fiction lets me realize my secret longings without having to actually do them. 

Here’s an excerpt from when my hero in Byte Me first sees Phoebe on stage with her band:

Phoebe laughed, then bent to play her solo riff. She was good, better than her companions were, her fingers plucking the strings with a technical precision that pleased without quite satisfying.

It might be imagination, Jake thought, that she seemed to hold something back. The riff was, after all, just a bit of flash to take the dull out of the introductions. But it wasn’t imagination that Jesse’s smile was edged with intimacy when he held out a hand to Phoebe and said, “Let’s sing, girl.”

She took his hand and let him draw her into the spotlight next to him, her answering smile affectionate. Her hair fell across her face when she bent over her guitar, plucking the strings with a haunting delicacy as she led off. Jesse started the vocal, his deep, soothing bass perfect for the wistful song about love spurned. At the refrain, Phoebe’s voice blended neatly with Jesse’s, sweetly husky, strangely familiar, as if Jake had heard her sing this song before.

On the next verse she started the vocal, her lightly Southern phrasing a pleasing underpinning to the melody line. On the dance floor, lovers leaned into each other, swaying in place amid the smoke and dust making eddies on the plank flooring.

Caught up in the thrall of her wistful stage presence, Jake didn’t find Earl quite as pathetic. The music, her voice, her sad eyes, all made her performance seem personal and intimate, as if she sang only to him.

* * * * *

I’ll have to admit I had a lot of fun writing about Phoebe’s singing and Jake’s reacting. And fictional singing is WAY better than my real singing. Okay, and my real dancing. My old lady twist is pretty scary (and painful these days lol). If you’d like to learn more about Byte Me just click here. 

Is there something you secretly wish you could do? 

Perilously yours,

Pauline

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