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About the author:
She writes under her real name in another genre. Her first book, “The Secret Sex Life of a Single Mom,” became a Lifetime Movie in 2014.
What inspired you to write your book?
I can’t/won’t say.
Here is a short sample from the book:
Roused From the Single Mom Cave
I drove to the far back of the parking lot at Tupper’s Irish Pub and deliberately chose a stall between two giant SUVs. I wanted a few minutes to compose myself before meeting my date, and I liked how my little Mazda 5 seemingly “disappeared,” like the Batmobile vanishing into the Batcave.
I flicked off the engine, simultaneously cutting off Christina Aguilera belting out Moves Like Jagger. Silence flooded the car—but I could practically hear my heart pounding.
My God, would you relax! I told myself. He might not even be who he says he is.” True, he might be a phony. After all, I’d connected with him through an online dating site. But why not give him the benefit of the doubt? I was looking for a quality man to have a serious relationship with, and he was the first man to pique my interest in almost a year. Moreover—oh, I’ll be completely honest here—the man looked drop-dead gorgeous in his photos. We’re talking “tall, dark and handsome” from the cover of GQ Spain. And even though I don’t speak any Spanish, my thirty-seven year-old hormones screamed, “Muy yummy-yummy!”
I opened my visor mirror for a last minute scan: Fair skin looked clear, eye-liner and mascara weren’t smudged, and nope, nothing unsightly was sticking out of my nose. I tilted my head down and examined the top of my head. I smoothed a few flyaways, and fluffed out the sides, sending a cascade of loose blond ringlets down the front of my stylish, pastel pink T-shirt.
You look good, girl, you’re ready—now go get him! Pumped, I grabbed my purse, reached for the door handle, then suddenly stopped: Hold your horses, Rocky. What time is it exactly?
Glancing at my watch, I saw I was ten minutes early. I’m one of those people who are never late. But I also had the perfect distraction within reach: Grabbing my cell phone, I opened my “Vocabulary Builder” app and continued on with my word quiz. Might as well kill time and get smarter all at once.
You’d think, given my behaviour, that I’d never met a man from an online dating website before. But the truth was very much the opposite: Since getting divorced five years ago, I’d probably met close to eighty.
Things were different back then though; I was different. Divorce can really mess with your head, and recovering from one is a multi-layered, multi-pronged, time-consuming process. Whereas some people retreat or avoid dating for years, I went full-speed ahead and dated up a storm. But when your husband unexpectedly leaves you for another woman, well…let’s just say you might find yourself feeling and doing things you never have before.
Prior to getting separated, I’d always been one to tread the straight and narrow—to strictly adhere to the rulebook for “good girls “and “good wives.” I remember once overhearing my ex-husband telling friends, “I married Mary fucking Poppins.” Perhaps he meant it as a slice, however, I took it as a compliment.
But after he walked out on me—and the initial shock and horror wore off—I found myself feeling strangely restless; fiery. Believe me, these feelings surprised me too. I wanted to be bolder, more daring, and more in control of everything, including my body. And I had just enough rebel in me to take action: I began dating and taking lovers when and if I pleased. We aren’t talking “mindless, random bed hopping” here, for it was selective, always safe, and much less a “hop” than a tiptoe (okay, add a few strides in there). My point is that I learned to enjoy the pleasures of sex and friendship without worrying about “where it was going.” This was a huge shift in thinking for me, empowering and freeing on many levels. But I always knew that this wasn’t a permanent lifestyle choice; rather, an important exploratory phase.
My dating life aside, my primary focus during this time was on reconstructing me. I had to heal my heart, overcome my anger, and somehow leave the past behind me while concurrently creating a new identity, new purpose, and brand spanking new future for myself. I had to re-establish my career as a book editor, become financially independent, and learn not just how to single parent my two young kids, but how to do it well.
I suppose it’s pretty clear why I wasn’t ready for a serious relationship. But, as many a wise person has said, “This too shall pass.” And so, too, did this tough, insane, and brutally exciting stage of my life:
It was around a year ago that I noticed I was feeling “different”: not just more confident and self-sufficient, but well…peaceful. Instead of feeling mistrustful and emotionally guarded around men, I started feeling respect, appreciation, even admiration for them. I’d look at crews of men working on highways in dreadful weather conditions, or see a man dangling from a skyscraper cleaning windows, and I’d think, “Wow, thank God for men. They’re amazing.” I’d see couples holding hands or a man protectively putting his arm around his woman in a crowd, and actually feel warmth spread across my chest. My heart, which for so long had felt black and clogged, had opened again. I was finally ready for a serious relationship—and I genuinely believed the universe wanted this for me too. And today, two minutes from now in fact, might be when I met “the one.”
It was time to go. I locked my car and began my long march through the parking lot, purse clenched tightly under one arm. With my free hand, I double-checked that my shirt was nicely tucked in around the waist of my skinny jeans. These jeans were much tighter than my typical Lululemon yoga attire; but I’d worn them because a friend once said they made my butt look perky.
Finally I arrived at the large entrance doors. Okay, girl. You got this. Be confident. I took a deep breath and held my shoulders back. I flung open the door and stepped in.