Wednesday, July 18, 2012

#5- Here Today (Commercial women's fiction)

Nate Cather, a world-famous actor, is stalking his own biggest fan. In the public eye since age 15, Nate doesn’t have many normal friends, but he does have Mary K Dallof, a fan who has written him every week for ten years. Nate looks forward to hearing from Mary K more than anyone can ever know.

But when Mary K’s wedding announcement arrives, Nate realizes his one chance at true love is slipping away. Ignoring the protests of his brother/manager Tom, Nate sets off to break up Mary K’s engagement, hopefully without destroying his career in the process. Unfortunately, wooing Mary K requires avoiding her suspicious older sister and maintaining a healthy dislike for her infuriatingly nice fiancĂ©. And he thought shaving his head to disguise himself was tough.

When Tom reports that the tabloids are on his trail, Nate has to decide whether he’s going to risk his reputation for Mary K--who, as it turns out, isn’t as easy to talk to in real life as she was in his head. Mary K, on the other hand, must pick between true love and a life-long fantasy. Complete at 84,000 words and told from the alternating perspectives of Nate and Mary K, HERE TODAY takes place over the five days before Mary K’s wedding.

I was a columnist and copy editor at The Daily Utah Chronicle, my college newspaper, from 2003 to 2007. I have also worked as a marketing assistant for Shadow Mountain Publishing. This is my first novel.

Thank you for your time.

(Author's name redacted)

First 500 words:

One of the many, many nice things about being both rich and good-looking is that I’m not going to be convicted of a crime anytime soon.  Take stalking.  It’s technically a crime and I suppose I could be accused of dabbling in quote-unquote stalking. 
See, I’m Nathan Cather.  Yeah.  The Nathan Cather—the one who probably has a couple stalkers of his own. You’ve probably seen my movies, watched my TV shows, read my interviews.  Some of you have even visited my website.
This isn’t arrogance—it’s fact.  Sometimes I meet people who pretend they’re too smart to know who I am, too mature to pay attention to who I broke up with last or how much money I make.  “Nathan Cather, huh?  What do you do for a living?”  They, my friends, are full of it.  Everybody knows Nathan Cather—anyone who says otherwise is lying.  I’ve been in two TV series and twenty-three movies, dozens of magazine covers, and hosted SNL three times. 
So I pose the question: Who is going to find me guilty of stalking?  Most women want me to stalk them.  And sure, laws probably should apply to everyone equally, but let’s be real.  Don’t some apply a little more to the dude who drips his blood on a girl’s car, and a little less to the international movie star?
I’m just saying.
My brother, ex-girlfriend and best friend are looking at me like they think I’ve gone insane.   It’s understandable.  To someone whose entire career can be summed up with the words “Autumn Chestnut 37,” what I’ve done can nearly be termed suicidal.
The four of us were staring critically my reflection.  Or, rather, Val and Walker were staring at my reflection; I was booking a flight on my laptop. Tom sat on the edge of my bathtub with the same amused look on his face he wore nearly every time I made a decision by myself.
Val spoke first, absently twisting a lock of blonde hair around her bony finger.  “You just don’t have what it takes.  There’s no Vin Diesel in you.”
“I didn’t do it to be cool," I said irritably. "I did it because I’m going to Mary K’s wedding and I don’t want to be recognized."
“I’m not sure this is the brilliant disguise you think it is,” Walker said.
“I’m going Clark Kent, too,” I said, slipping on a pair of black plastic-rimmed glasses.
To be fair, I can see where their confusion is coming from. Even though love is the theme of most movies I’ve made, I never thought much of the concept until I met the one person capable of changing my mind. As it turns out, fame and fortune become secondary when confronted with the Big L.  Mary K Dallof, the object of my affections, is beautiful (you know that had to come first), smart, kind, funny, poised, passionate, honest, athletic and (most unfortunately) engaged. 
So yes, I have shaved my head for love.

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