Saturday, February 12, 2011

A woman Searching For Herself. Can You Relate?

I spent one summer at Alabama U. in Tuscaloosa which provided the setting for SUMMER LOVE. I was involved with a program for learning disabled students, as they were called at that point in time, and my experience became part of the story. As in all of my books, the characters I created from my imagination, took on lives of their own, and moved through the book to a logical and satisfying conclusion.
Paula was a woman who tried to be all things to all people, as so many women do. But in the course of the story, she learns to think of herself as well. Derek is every woman's dream of a hero but he also has some issues that need to be resolved. If you like stories that are rounded out with supporting characters, you will enjoy SUMMER LOVE.

Here's what the story is about:
When Paula's husband leaves her to "find himself" after years of a good marriage, she is devastated. Adding to her hurt and anger, he joins a band and dates the band's sexy young singer. Forced to start over again in the job market, she goes back to school for a degree in Special Education.
Here she meets Derek, a retired naval officer, back in college to qualify for a second career. As Paula learns to cope in a whole new world, she is surprised to "find herself" falling in love again. And starting over proves to be better than she could have ever imagined.

SUMMER LOVE will be released as an ebook from Desert Breeze Publishing April 1, 2011. Cover is not available at this time. For more information and updates please visit my website at

Paula slowly dialed the unfamiliar number and took deep breaths to steady her voice while it rang. One, two, three, maybe he's not--
"Quent? This is Paula."
"I know." A too long pause. "Is something wrong?"
"Oh, no. I just... need to talk with you. About the wedding. Amy's wedding." Why is this so awkward? She'd been married to this man for thirty years. He was the father of the bride-to-be. It was his responsibility to pay for his daughter's wedding, divorced or not.
"What about it?"
"We need to talk about the... cost."
Why was Quent making this so hard for her? She took another deep breath and plunged in. "Amy plans to have a garden wedding, at our house."
"What if the house sells before then?"
"In two weeks. The first weekend in July."
"That soon?"
So he had no idea she was pregnant. "And there will be a reception, of course. She's not sending invitations so that won't be an expense. And the roses will be in bloom which means much less decorating to do."
"So get to the point, Paula, I have to be at the club to play at nine. What will I be paying for?"
His brusqueness made Paula aware that she had been hedging, which she never intended. "Okay." She recited the expenses, finishing with Amy's dress, hesitated, then added, "and mine."
"How much are you talking about, cost-wise?"
"Well, I don't exactly know. But I'd say about five thousand dollars."
"Five thousand dollars? My God, Paula, that would make a down payment on a house."
"But they aren't buying a house."
"I still think that much money could be better spent for something else."
"Like a BMW?"
"Now wait a minute. How I spend the money I've earned is my--"
"No, you wait a minute. I had a part in the accumulation of what we have and I--"
"I offered to give you whatever you felt was fair so--"
"Nothing is fair. You took my life away. You couldn't compensate me for that!"
"I didn't take your life. I simply asked for mine."
"Why? So you could date some hot little number in sexy boots who is young enough to call you daddy? Sugar daddy, that is."
"Who told you -- never mind." There was a silence on the line while he obviously got in control of himself. "Okay, I'll pay for the wedding, whatever it costs. Tell Amy to have all the bills sent to me. And Paula, we are divorced so I'm free to go out with anyone I choose. And I'm not the one who went off to college, you did. Don't forget that."


Virginia C said...

Hi, Linda! Yes, I can relate : ) My favorite romances are those where the hero and heroine learn about themselves as they learn about each other. Love is often found in unexpected hearts : ) I have always set high standards for myself as far as what I had to accomplish in my personal life. I was an "organized perfectionist", determined to meet all the goals I set for myself. I did pretty well at that for many years, and then life began to impose its own needs that had to be met. When my mother's health began its sad deterioration, and I became more an more a caregiver, something had to give. I no longer worked overtime, not all of the daily household chores were done each day, meals became much more simple, personal time was minimalized, and life as it was continued on a more elementary level. I let go of a lot of my own personal expectations...and it didn't kill me. The most important thing was my mother's care, and when I focused more on her needs and less on my own expectations, I could actually relax and give myself a break. In some ways, I felt closer to my mother than I ever had in my whole life. My mother has been gone for a while now, but I have never gone back to being "uber-woman", and I'm glad : )

gcwhiskas at aol dot com

joder said...

I love seeing an author use things from their real life to create a story. And this one sounds so good, especially to those of us getting up there in the years. But starting over is hard at any age I guess.

joderjo402 AT gmail DOT com

Elie said...

Hey did you write about my life? Congrats on your upcoming release.

Kasey said...

So many women need to learn to put themselves first! :0)

Linda Swift said...

Virginia C, your comments really touched my heart. I can relate to your mother's caretaking. And yes, when we become the "mother" to their "child" it brings understanding and closeness that we never had before. I can see my mother clearly now that she is no longer with me.I appreciate all that she was in a new way. Thanks so much for sharing this with me. And I hope you will read my story at Desert Breeze, to be released April 1st. Linda

Linda Swift said...

joder, I think we all use what we are and what we have experienced in some way when we write. We may give our thoughts and actions to a character very unlike ourselves but we do make use of real life as well as our imaginations. And yes, starting over is never easy but every time we reinvent ourselves we grow a little taller. Notice I didn't say wider, because we grow that way from eating too much! Linda

Linda Swift said...

Elie, I think I wrote about every wife and mother and daughter in some ways in this book. We all have more in common that differences, and especially those 50 and over. Linda

Linda Swift said...

Kasey, I can't speak for your generation but my generation was taught to put ourselves last. Do all things for all people and if there is anything left, do for self. There has to be a middle ground here so we don't become selfish people who think it's ALL about us. But finding the right balance isn't easy, is it? Linda