You’ve got the LOOK: a sneak peek into my current work-in-progress, Country Roads

Thanks to a fellow author, Jennifer Wilck, for tagging me with the ziggy zig zag tag—“You’ve got the LOOK!”

As part of this tag, I have to take my most recent work-in-progress or my current manuscript and search for the word “look,” then post the surrounding paragraphs/text.

Set-up for the LOOK snippet from my current work-in-progress Country Roads (release date: August 2013):

Artist Julia Castillo is devastated when her uncle-cum-agent refuses to offer her latest horse paintings for sale, saying they will ruin her reputation.  Desperate for a second opinion, Julia loads her canvases into the back of a rusty station wagon and sets off from her home in North Carolina to find the one art dealer whose name she knows, Claire Arbuckle of the Gallery at Sanctuary.

The first time I use the word LOOK is on page 4 of the manuscript:

Julia scanned the landscape around her, LOOKing for a house or a store.  All she could see was a river snaking under the bridge just behind her and a lot of green trees marching up the mountainsides.  Four vehicles sped past her in loud rushes of hot, gritty air.  She wasn’t sure whether to be grateful not to have to worry about accepting help from a potentially deranged stranger, or annoyed that chivalry seemed to be dead.

Another vehicle whooshed past, then flashed red brake lights and pulled over to the side of the highway well in front of her.  As the black, low-slung car reversed toward her, she wished she hadn’t tossed the wrench; hefting it would have made her look a little threatening.  Now she had to settle for arranging her keys between her fingers so their ends stuck out as she made a fist, another tidbit she’d picked up from watching cop shows on television.

The car’s door swung open, and a man in a pale blue shirt, red tie and navy slacks emerged, unfolding his long legs as he stepped out onto the gravel.

“A tie seems pretty upstanding,” she muttered, loosening her grip on the keys.  “Serial killers probably don’t wear ties on a daily basis.”

She planted her feet wide apart and crossed her arms as the Good Samaritan approached with a fluid, ground-eating stride. She guessed he was in his early thirties, and her artist’s sensibility quivered with the urge to paint the planes and shadows of a face that was too strong for classic handsomeness and far more interesting.  He had hair like an ancient Greek portrait: thick, dark waves you wanted to bury your fingers in.  His silver gray eyes almost glowed in contrast against his olive skin.  He would be a perfect model for one of those half-immortal, half-human offspring the Greek gods were always fathering.  What were they called?  Demi-gods.

 His cool silvery gaze flicked over her, making her aware of the dirt on the knees of her jeans from her futile attempt to change the tire.  And the sweat that glued her white gauze peasant blouse to her shoulder blades.  And who knew how crazed her long curly hair looked after being blown around by the passing vehicles?

“Got a flat?” he said, stopping a few feet away as he shifted his survey to the limp pile of rubber nearly falling off the wheel rim.

And now I’m tagging five of my fabulous fellow authors for their LOOK snippets:

C.H. Admirand

Roni Denholtz

Shirley Hailstock

Lisa Verge Higgins

Nancy Naigle

You can post your LOOK snippets in your blogs, website, or on your Facebook pages.

To my readers: these ladies are all great writers, so check them out!

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