“Room For Two” Found A Home!

My short story Room For Two was accepted to an online literary magazine!!! If you want to check it out, here’s the link: The Write Place At the Write Time Spring/Summer Issue 2013. It’ll appear on their website under ‘fiction’ until their next issue on September 22nd. After that, it’ll be stored under ‘archives.’

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

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Boy Meets Girl By Yawatta Hosby

COPYRIGHT 2013

Boy Meets Girl by Yawatta Hosby

“Just talk to her, dude.”

Rob frowned. “She doesn’t want to be bothered.”

“Did she say that?”

“No.”

“Then you don’t know that.”

Rob wished things could be that simple. He looked at his friend, Ernest, who ate his calzone. Rob drank his soda and picked at his slice of pizza. He had lost his appetite. Glancing around the pizzeria, he noticed a large crowd. It was Friday’s night rush. He hoped Giselle would stop by even though she probably didn’t care to see him.

For the past couple of months, Rob and Giselle bumped into each other at Tony’s Pizzeria every Friday night. Only one night they’d spend together, but it was perfect. The rest of the week he daydreamed about her. He developed feelings for Giselle in that short amount of time but never crossed any boundaries. He kept getting mixed signals, so he didn’t want to make things awkward and risk losing her if she didn’t feel the same way. Rob decided it would be best to take things slow, to start a friendship with Giselle, so she would trust him. But for the past two weeks, it turned awkward–the one thing he wanted to avoid.

Whenever he’d greet her, she seemed like she was in a rush to get away. She would hardly make eye contact, say a quick “hello,” and walk away. Not even a smile anymore. That’s what hurt Rob the most. Giselle didn’t seem excited to see him, and he didn’t know why. Ever since he met her, he kept confiding in Ernest about his feelings. Ernest was in a healthy relationship, that sometimes Rob was jealous of, so he could offer good advice on pursuing the opposite sex.

Rob was realistic; he knew he had no game.

Ernest continued, “How about this? If you don’t think you can tell her how you really feel, then be her friend. Get to know her and she’ll get to know you. Then take things from there.”

“That’s what I’ve been trying to do.” Rob rubbed the back of his neck.

Ernest smirked. “Dude, you move at a worm’s pace. Friends don’t only see each other one night a week, if you can even call it that. More like only ten minutes.” He took a sip of his soda. “Friends call and text each other. They hang out in groups or alone. They enjoy each other’s company and make each other laugh. You got the last part down; now all you have to do is see her more.”

Rob nodded, letting the advice sink in. “Hang out with her. I can do that.”

Ernest laughed, shaking his head. “You’re too nice for your own good. Don’t get stuck in the friend zone.”

“Giselle likes nice guys. I asked.”

They both laughed.

“You know what I say, keep trying. If you get a green light, then try harder. Keep upping the ante if you keep getting a green light. Don’t stop for a yellow light. Absolutely stop if light turns red. If you keep upping the ante, then she’ll get that you like her. Then the ball will be in her court.”

Rob frowned. “What if she turns me down?”

“Then you’ll move on.”

Rob gave Ernest a never-going-to-happen look. His biggest fear was that all this time their conversations didn’t mean anything to Giselle. What if she was only being nice? What if she found someone else, tired of waiting for him to make a move? If she was even hoping for that. What if he misread the vibe she was giving out? What if he wanted a relationship with her so badly that he fabricated her responses in his head?

Doubt started to kick in. He didn’t want to bother her or be a regret. He analyzed their conversations and interactions on a daily basis, happy with the way she made him feel. It was torture not knowing if she felt the same way. It would hurt his heart if she had gone back to her friends, asking them to devise a plan for Rob to get off her back. What if these past two weeks had been Giselle’s avoidance plan in action?

Rob gulped.

“What’s wrong, dude?”

“Just thinking.”

Ernest sighed. “You got it pretty bad for her, huh?”

“Where have you been the past two months?”

“If you want, I’ll talk to her and see where her head is at,” Ernest offered.

“Nah, we’re not in school anymore.”

“What? You mean you don’t want to write ‘do you like me? Yes, no, or maybe’ on this napkin.”

They both grinned.

“So…you think I should talk to her?”

“Yeah, don’t even ask what’s wrong. Don’t even acknowledge that she’s been acting distant unless she brings it up. Just greet her like usual. Treat it like everything is the same. If she still acts awkward around you, then you’ll have your answer. Who knows, it may not even be about you. It could be about her.”

Rob’s heart beat quickened when he noticed Giselle crossing the street to head to the restaurant. His eyes glistened with lust. His lips parted; she was so beautiful. She wore a black pencil skirt that went a little above her knees, a white shirt, and green cardigan that went down to her waist. Her braid draped down her left shoulder. He readjusted his shirt and smoothed out his hair, hoping she’d glance at him. Just once.

As though she could read his mind, her eyes met his. Rob smiled. Giselle grinned then quickly lowered her gaze to the ground. He remained looking at her even though she ignored him. He fidgeted with his hands. What did he do wrong?

She walked through the door, looking straight ahead. Rob closed his eyes and sighed. Should he even say hello? Should he leave her alone? Putting on a brave face, he smiled again. “Hey, Giselle.”

She turned to face him and waved. “Hey.” She walked away.

Ouch. Not even a smile. She didn’t even include his name. He rubbed the back of his neck. “I told you she doesn’t want to be bothered,” he whispered. He lowered his eyes to the table, avoiding the sympathetic expression of his friend.

“What are you talking about, dude? She said hello. I think you’re making more than what it really is. You want more of a happy reaction because you’re feeling her, but she treated you like anyone would treat a friend or acquaintance.” Ernest sighed, standing up. “You’ll give yourself an ulcer if you try to analyze everything.”

“You leaving?”

“Yeah, so there’s no excuses why you can’t go over there and talk to her.”

Rob turned around. Now, Giselle was seated at her usual table. She wore headphones and wrote in a little notebook. His heart fluttered.

“Call me later.”

Rob nodded, never looking away from Giselle.

“Women don’t like men staring at them. It creeps them out,” Ernest teased.

They made eye contact. “Is that what you think happened?”

“It was a joke, dude.” Ernest shook his head. “You’re hopeless.”

Rob smiled. “Yeah hopelessly in love.”

“Corny, dude.”

They both chuckled.

Ernest left. Rob bit his nails. If he was going to make a move, it’d have to be now. She never stayed at Tony’s that long, only long enough to eat. Maybe Ernest was right? Maybe Giselle wasn’t even avoiding him? Maybe it was all in his head?

Rob gathered everything from the table, placed it on his tray, then dumped it into the trash can. He looked at Giselle again; he caught her glimpse over at him then quickly began writing. He smiled. Had she been sneaking peeks at him all this time like he’d been doing with her? With more confidence, he crossed the room to stand in line. He ordered a cannoli and another soda.

He took a deep breath before glancing over in Giselle’s direction again. Now or never. As he walked, different scenarios played in his head. Play it cool, he told himself. Yeah right. He couldn’t pretend like he didn’t care what she thought. She wasn’t just some girl. He wanted to impress her. If only she’d give Rob a clear sign of if it’d be okay to ask her out.

In the past, it was all right for him to sit at her table without asking first. She had seemed to enjoy it, so he decided to risk it tonight. He remained across from her instead of on the same side of the table. If across, he could better hide his sweat and nervousness. At least, he hoped.

Giselle scribbled something in her notebook, removed her ear buds from her ear, and looked up. She smiled at Rob while he returned the facial expression, raising an eyebrow. “Hey, Rob.”

His heart beat quickened with the mention of his name. ‘What’s up?”

“What’s up with you?”

Up the ante. Don’t stop unless a red light is given. “I enjoy the time we spend together.”

Giselle blushed. “Me too.”

“You look pretty in your outfit.” His cheeks flushed red. “Not that you don’t look pretty every day. I mean–“

“You look spiffy too. I love your scruff.”

Rob rubbed his chin in satisfaction. Good thing he hadn’t shaved this morning. If she wanted, he could grow it out to a beard. “You do?”

She nodded. “I’m attracted to scruff and messy hair. My friends tease that my type looks homeless.”

They laughed. Rob ran his fingers through his hair, disheveling it. If she wanted, he would throw his brush away. “This is the first time you’ve ever mentioned what your type is, physically speaking.”

“Was I supposed to tell you before?” she teased.

He scooted his plate to the center of the table. “Want some?”

Her eyes widened. “Dessert before my dinner? I can’t do that.”

“Says who?”

She bit her lower lip. With a hint of mischief in her eyes, she lifted up the fork and cut into the cannoli. She ate a piece. “Oh my gosh, this is so good.”

“Eat the rest of it.” Before she could turn the offer down, he said, “I’m not taking no for an answer.”

“Then I’m not taking no for an answer when I say my treat for next time.”

“Next time?” Rob smirked. “Who says there’ll be a next time?”

She frowned. She lowered her eyes onto the table and ate the cannoli.

Rob gulped. He took the teasing too far. How could he take it back? He studied her as she picked up her pen to write in her notebook. “I’m sorry. I was just kidding. It was a dumb joke; it won’t happen again.”

She continued to eat. Her silence tortured him.

“I would like nothing more than there to be a next time. Let’s hang out tomorrow.”

“I can’t.”

“Why not?” he whispered, rubbing the back of his neck.

She thanked the waiter, who brought her stromboli out to her table. She turned her gaze back to Rob. “Want some?”

He shook his head.

“I can’t because I have a performance tomorrow night. I get to sing three songs.” She lifted up her notebook, then sat it back down. “That’s what I’m working on now.”

He grinned. “You sing?”

“Yeah, I’ve been really busy preparing, and now the big night is tomorrow.”

“I’ll be there. I wouldn’t miss it for anything.”

“Really?”

“Yeah, tell me when and where. I’ll be sitting in the front row.”

Giselle blushed. It eased his mind seeing her nervous around him. Maybe she felt the same way? Rob’s question was finally answered. Her mind was preoccupied and that’s why she wasn’t herself these past two Fridays. It had nothing to do with him at all. He was happy that he learned a secret about her.

He continued, “Sing me something now.”

She surveyed the room. “You want me to sing in this crowded place?”

“When I’m with you, it feels like we’re the only two people in the room.”

“Are you flirting with me, Rob?”

“Giselle, isn’t it obvious?” He kept a calm exterior even though he was freaking out inside.

“This is the first time you ever have.”

“Was I supposed to before?”

She smiled. She batted her eyelids, twirling her braid through her fingers. Studying his reaction, she sang, “Miss Mary Mack Mack Mack, all dressed in black black black, with silver buttons buttons buttons, all down her back back back.” She laughed.

He rubbed his chin, wishing she’d run her fingers through his facial hair. He joined the chorus of her laughter. “I see how it is. With that classic, I can see you winning the audience over.” He fidgeted with his hands. “Your show is at night, right? It’s not an all day thing, so we could get breakfast. How about IHOP?”

They locked passionate gazes. “I’d like that.”

How successful the night was going, maybe they could bypass friendship and head straight to dating. He’d let Giselle take the driver’s seat. Either way, he had a lot to talk to Ernest about once he called him later.

THE END

Book Review: Get Clean By Jams N. Roses

***I received a free copy in exchange for a book review***

‘We’re creatures of habit, us humans, some of us more than others.’

An addict, a psychopath, a drug dealer and his girlfriend.

This is a humorous crime story full of addiction, wrong decisions and terrible friends. Before we can pick ourselves up, we must sometimes hit rock bottom.

Cocaine is everywhere; young men and women are sniffing ‘recreational drugs’ as often as sparking cigarettes or sipping beer, typical of a generation educated by music videos and tabloid newspapers.

Jimmy Walker, a smart, young man with a caring family around him, should have the world at his feet. If only he wasn’t addicted to cocaine. Aware of his ‘casual addiction’, as he calls it, he decides a change of scenery would be a good thing…

But Jimmy finds himself amongst more cocaine, crime, liars, psychopaths, random violence than ever before, and even murder, whilst doing numerous drug deals and increasingly more cocaine.

All the time his body and mind are deteriorating at an alarming rate. Will he continue to get high, or will he Get Clean?

Loosely based on true events.

Adult content.

41QsxTuZm4L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_I loved this 26 chapter book. It was written in Jimmy’s first person point-of-view. He went to rehab after being depressed and had an overdose. Once he got out, he planned to spend time in Spain to try and get clean, to get new scenery. His girlfriend, Colleen, had dumped him for someone else, so his friends teased that he was escaping his heartache.

He meets Jason in Spain. The job they applied for sucks, so they quit and become friends. Jimmy ends up staying with Jason and Sarah, his landlady. I thought it was cute how they both had a crush on her even though her boyfriend was a dangerous drug dealer. The whole time I kept thinking this won’t end well for one, maybe both, of them.

My favorite lines: 1) Remember I said that Jason would make a good salesman? Well, maybe if he actually gave a shit. 2) I didn’t think that any respectable newspaper would print a story using phrases such as ‘beats down,’ ‘bit on the side,’ or ‘English dude,’ but I got his point.

As a reader, I wished that quotation marks wouldn’t have been around Jimmy’s thoughts. Sometimes I had to go back to figure out he was just thinking something instead of speaking. There was some headhopping, but nothing distracting from the interesting story. Even though they’d be considered ‘losers’ in real life, all the characters were interesting and entertaining. They had a somewhat endearing quality, causing me to root for them to get their acts together.

The author did a fantastic job with dialogue. I loved all the conversations–all the plotting and schemes. I laughed a lot from the sarcastic humor. At times, I couldn’t tell if Jimmy was sarcastic or if he was just stating facts in a naive, innocent way. Either way, his observations were funny.

I RECOMMEND this book to read.

For more information on the author and book:

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Book Review: Vanguard of Hope By Kathy Steinemann

***I received a free copy in exchange for a book review***

LISETVILLE, 1890 — Murders are committed; homes are burned; family secrets are buried; an unexpected romance complicates lives. Amid the mystery and violence, a vigilante brigade emerges to administer justice.

Flowing through the intrigue and drama is a dark undercurrent that will touch your heart as you empathize with the victims.

What Readers Are Saying:

“I am hooked. I do hope that I will be able to get all your novels.” – Lorene Charlton

“It’s not chick lit.” – A Male Reader

“This book keeps you in suspense right to the end. The dark underlying theme is tackled in a sensitive manner.” – S.L. Banks

“I started reading this novel to help quiet my mind at a late hour, but found myself still awake in the morning. Its intense read was much more than I expected. It has ‘all’ the elements from love, betrayal, suspense, and romance, to murder. ‘Vanguard of Hope’ will touch everyone who reads it. If you’re a young adult or older, this excellent novel will awaken you deep within your soul.” – Toni Gee

“The book was excellent! I really enjoyed reading it. I could not stop. Every chance I got, I was trying to sneak in just a couple more diary entries! I look forward to reading the next book in the series. And I will most certainly be recommending this to others to read!” – Brandy Mayan-Rooks

17372535I loved this 6 part book. It was narrated as Hope’s diary entries from 1890 to 1912. My favorite lines: 1) Mystery, murder, vigilante justice, romance, treasure. Who knew that my ancestors led lives stranger than fiction? 2) Why should I bring babies into this miserable world of arranged marriages, where women have no rights, and are treated like ornaments or slaves? 3) Another month of my life has passed, and the loneliness increases every day. 4) I finally realized that my husband loved me, just as I was about to abandon him. 5) Physical attractions are common, but mental connections are rare.

I respected Hope because she was a strong female character. She loved her husband but still questioned the world around her, instead of keeping quiet like women were expected to do in the olden days. She was my favorite character. I also loved Solomon, her husband, and her sister. Even though it was written in first person point-of-view, the author did a great job with characterization. Hope’s narration and interaction with the other characters really brought out everyone’s personalities. The different relationship dynamics were cool to see.

  • Solomon was a slave. When slaves were freed, he became Hope and her husband’s worker around the house. She ended up cheating on her husband; maybe I should’ve been appalled, but I wasn’t. I liked Hope’s secret relationship with Solomon; I rooted for them to end up together. I felt bad that they had to go through all that discrimination and threats because of the society’s racism.

The story was more than romance. The author did a fine job with conflict, tension, and suspense. I liked the reveal that Hope and her sister had a dark secret regarding their dad. The brigade helped them out when their dad ends up dead. The mystery: who killed him? I loved all the twists at the end. This story was a fast read.

I RECOMMEND this book to read.

For more information on the author or book:

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Day 7 (Determined)

MAY 8TH – 688 WORDS

Besides my writer and publisher responsibilities, I’ve taken on the role of tutoring a college student. Am I crazy? Perhaps. Do I like punishing myself? Perhaps. My payment–free dinners. I have to eat, right? After work, I stayed in town for my second job. We didn’t get finished until around 8:30ish. By the time I ate, I was spent. Have you ever ate so much food that your stomach cramps and you just want to take a nap? Yeah, that’s how good I felt.

No sleeping though. I was determined to write something for NaNo. I didn’t care if it would only be 2 words, something was being typed on my computer. I focused on my story, reaching the end of Chapter 3. Once “Real World” came on, I was mesmerized by how Jordan and Nia are batshit crazy hee hee, so I had to pay attention. Sorry NaNo.

At 11, I took the opportunity to log into Absolute Write Forums to see if I got anymore suggestions and feedback. In the morning, I had posted my revised back cover blurb on there. These comments were more encouraging, letting me know I was on the right track. Editing my blurb took over my time until my head hit the pillow.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Day 6 (Other Priorities)

MAY 7TH – O WORDS

No excuses. Just my reasons why I couldn’t work on NaNo today:

  • I posted book reviews on my blog, amazon, and goodreads. If I’m logged in, then I take the time to read other blogs and make comments. It’s the only time I get to do it. So I guess you could say, I chose social media over NaNo.
  • If you’ve been following my blog, then you know I’m ready to publish One By One. Every time I think I have something figured out, another obstacle takes over. I’m completely finished with editing and formatting. I thought it wouldn’t be hard to write a back cover blurb. Boy was I wrong! I’m happy I posted it on the Absolute Write Forums under Query Hell in Share Your Work. I’ve got great advice for improvements. I need a massive rewrite, so I better get to work. So I guess you could say, I chose my publisher responsibilities over NaNo.

No apologies. I have to get this stuff done. And, it doesn’t help that I’m losing motivation. Once I get home from work, I’m pretty tired. It’s a long day getting up at 5 AM and not reaching home until around 6:20 PM. I have to figure out a better system or something regarding writing time for Trapped: A Novella.

Good thing I decided to make this a novella at around 30,000 words. If I would have to write 1,666 words a day in order to reach 60,000 by the end of 30 days, then I would be bald-headed. The stress would’ve made my hair fall out. I wish my writing buddies were doing NaNo with me, but it wasn’t meant to be. Maybe that’s why I’ve lost motivation. There’s no one to really talk to. I mean sure they’d listen to me vent, but it’s not the same thing. After awhile, I’m sure they’d cut me off–I love to complain 🙂

Wish me luck. I have a feeling that I’ll need it.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Day 5 (Optimistic)

MAY 6TH – 1,856 WORDS

I thought I knew how I wanted this story to go, but after watching “Straw Dogs,” I believe that I can make Miki darker and creepier. I’m very optimistic about the changes I’ll make. It’s pretty cool writing the villains–probably will be a running theme you guys will always see regarding posts on my writing. I can’t help it. I think it’s fun to get into Finia and Miki’s perspective on the situation they’re in. She’s lost and just wants to be left alone. He’s “in love,” a.k.a. obsessed, and doesn’t care how he gets her as long as he does.

So far, Jahlin hasn’t been born yet. I finished the scene where Finia and Miki are in the doctor’s office and find out she’s pregnant. I reached Chapter 3, which focuses on the aftermath of that visit. Miki learns that Finia won’t roll over and play nice like he had assumed. He’s dreading the challenge.

Since I actually accomplished writing today, I’m proud of myself. If I can keep this pace of writing more than a 1,000 words if I get behind, then I should stay on track. Keeping my fingers crossed as I daydream about my New York City trip coming up June 1st 🙂

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby