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About the author:
Joanne Sexton is an Australian romance writer and mother of two. She had always dreamed of writing novels and has been an avid reader most of her life. In between being a mum and writing, she runs a small bookkeeping business. She has recently become a qualified florist.
Here is a short sample from the book:
Darkness and light tango across the ceiling when wind strip searches trees, blocking the streetlight’s glow when the bluster sways branches. The eerie shapes skittering overhead would be frightening if I was a child, or if I allowed my imagination to take hold.
Instead, lying in the darkness, they are soothing somehow. I shiver as the howling outside mimics the shadows stretching in front of me.
The snoring besides me escalates, and I sigh. I love Alex, in my own way. As much as I can love him. It isn’t his fault our relationship is mundane and our sex life so routine. It took both of us to destroy the foundation of our life together. He can’t read minds.
Glancing over at his sleeping form my disappointment is a prevalent emotion. The usual jack-hammering of hurried sex left me unsatisfied again. The aroma of our coupling lingers. Sweat, and the faint trace of my arousal which never came to fruition.
The experience has left me raw and wanting more, a craving unfulfilled. I remember when sensuality and passion resided in our bed. Hot kisses, warm tongues and moans of unbridled ecstasy are all ghosts of the past. Things could be different. Why am I still here?
What bound me to him: loyalty, friendship, love? Alexander came into my life when I needed guidance, love and unconditional acceptance. For the most part he provided all this. If I am honest with myself, it probably isn’t his fault at all. I’ve retreated as I always do. He believes things are the same. He believes my happy facade. Ignorance is bliss. I doubt that when the time comes he will be surprised.
His restless slumber brings his face close to mine. A wave of dark hair flops across his face and I feel compelled, for the briefest of moments, to push it back. As I once had. Why did it always go this way? The unfulfilled feeling always came, as though something was amiss, like something was absent from my life. Alex no longer filled the void. I’m almost sure I am no longer who he wants either. We continue out of habit. I will miss him when he’s gone.
Sighing again I decide to get up. Insomnia will ensure I remain restless tonight. I leave the house dark as I tiptoe down the hall and out to my favourite room.
An enclosed back porch the length of the house with a picketed fence and clear plastic shades provide protection from the elements and a quiet comfort.
A wooden three-seater swing sits against the wall, my guitar propped beside it. Perhaps scribbling music and lyrics for my acoustic treasure will soothe me. Melancholy and bliss, the two ends of the emotional spectrum provide the best fodder for song. One of them is on the menu this evening.
Grabbing lined music paper and a pencil I go and sit, swinging for a bit, waiting for my muse. A chord forms in my mind so I pick up my classical guitar and strum. As the tune comes to me I hum it as I write out the notes. After the second play through the words shape with the music.
I sing out the blues for the third and final time. I have written better, and of course much worse, but it heals, it helps. Goodbye to you, Alexander. I try to recall the happier times, the beginning and the memories sit far in my mind, out of reach. Retrieving the folder containing my scribbled songs from the ground beside me, I shuffle through. If I play a song I wrote back then, when Alex became my world, maybe the lost hope could be restored. Simply called ‘Alexander’, the song emanated all the passion and thrills of new love I’ve forgotten how to feel.