He averted her gaze, sucking air in through his teeth. One of his many irritating habits and something he always did when he knew he was in the wrong. He sighed deeply before turning to look at her again, a weak smile rippling across his face as his eyelashes fluttered.
After Lisa turned thirteen, Elizabeth Galsworthy-Grant turned into a one-woman precursor to Tinder. She became obsessed with finding her daughter a husband, preferably a wealthy one, so she would never have to contemplate that nasty three-letter word job. She could never understand why her efforts were always so unappreciated by her rebellious daughter, with her feminist views and ridiculous mantra...'I don't need a man to complete me.'
After three and a half years of my life and 92,000 words, I'm not going to allow my novel to wallow in the slushy stigma of rejection and, whatever it takes, I'm going to make it grabbable.
I've known about the Two Minute Grab Zone for quite some time and it's time I got to grips with it.
With all the upbeat bravado that goes into celebrating a New Year, it has been a sobering experience for me to start 2019 with a rejection. I am viewing the first rejection of 2019 as a part of my character building process. I haven't died, I will live to write another day. My determination, as well as desire to master the craft is stronger than it ever was and I'm on the way to developing a skin with the rigidity of an armadillo. So, that's all good.
Elizabeth had never been to see Coln Castle, the boarding school for young ladies in Gloucestershire, but they always advertised in Country Lifestyle and that was good enough for her. Country Lifestyle was the bastion of rural English literature for the husky-wearing brigade, which often featured articles by Lady Prunella Plumpton. Such was their reputation, which meant they would never publish advertisements about any dodgy educational establishments, so Elizabeth had enrolled Lisa five years previously.
If at any stage Arthur thought that a much younger wife would look after him, he was wrong, as Elizabeth employed a live-in carer before they left the registry office. Elizabeth had no scruples when it came to getting what she wanted and she reeled in Arthur for exactly the same reason she had trapped Fergus, his bank balance; another loveless marriage to satisfy her financial craving.
‘I’m off to catch a trout for your supper from the stream in the Hundred Acre Wood.’
‘I’ll look forward to eating it. Bye, Pooh… I love you.’
‘Love you more, Piglet.’ He waved goodbye, blew her a kiss then drove away.
Gloucestershire - 1964
One hot summer’s day, the windows of Lisa’s nursery, which also doubled up as a classroom, were flung wide open and the smell of the dusty heat flooded through the window, along with a whiff of karma.