For today’s sample, I thought I would unveil the first scene of my WIP, Cold Feet Fever, sequel to Fur Ball Fever. I’m 2/3 of the way of the first draft, and thought some of you might be interested in how I’ve chosen to begin the book.
Here’s the ‘Elevator Pitch’ for Cold Feet Fever:
‘One for the Money’ meets ‘The Sopranos’
A notorious playboy nightclub owner and a repressed undertaker-turned-event-planner join forces to fight crime in a Goth night club. Vandalism, disappearing corpses, a goofy dog, and bungling thugs add to the fun, culminating in an epic grand opening the vampire wannabes of Atlantic City will never forget.
“That feels real good, sugar dumplin’. Ahhhhhh, you know what I like ….” The bourbon-and-cream voice trailed away into nothingness.
Katie Deluca snatched her hand away from the handle and stared at the closed door. It was unthinkable that the masculine growl, underscored by a feminine giggle, had originated from Sam Jackson’s office. It must have been a snippet of the multiple conversations echoing through Kinki’s second floor hallway.
She verified the gilded nameplate beside the door. Sure enough, it read: Samuel Beauregard Jackson, M.B.A., CEO of Kinki, Atlantic City’s First Paranormal Nightclub.
Right place? Check.
In the remote possibility that she’d arrived at the wrong time, a quick glance at her phony Rolex told her it was exactly 11:29 a.m.
Right time? Check.
To be on the safe side, she sidled as close to the door as possible without actually pressing her ear against it, and listened.
Was that a whimper?
After a while she gave up. A host of odd-looking individuals lining the corridor were creating such a racket, it was impossible to isolate sounds. This crowd must be attending the job fair she’d read about. According to the hasty Internet research she’d conducted on her Smartphone during the preceding hour, the new owners had purchased the fetish club with their gambling proceeds and were revamping it into a nightclub for vampire and zombie wannabes, complete with clients and staff in paranormal costumes.
Katie studied the applicants. Everywhere she looked, ghosts, ghouls, and goblins rehearsed their spookiest sounds. Several candidates sprouted vampire teeth, while others dripped gore from neck wounds she hoped were fake. On spotting a couple of semi-rotted zombies in the crowd, she suppressed a shudder.
This job had Trouble, with a capital “T”, written all over it, especially if Sam Jackson was conducting one of his famous seductions behind closed doors. She was dubious about sharing an office with a man reputed to be a player, not to mention a dedicated gambler with a fondness for Jack Daniels. If rumors were true, Sam had several addictions, all wrapped up inside one gorgeous package. Then again, what other choice did she have? She’d been hired to organize a kick-ass grand opening for his club.
Truth be told, if someone had asked her to gnaw off her own hand at the wrist in order to score this contract, she would cheerfully have chowed down.
Katie assessed Sam’s door again, and reached a decision. No man in his right mind, even a legendary playboy like Sam Jackson, would attempt a seduction in the middle of a job fair. She studied the crowd and fingered a particularly vocal ghoul, who was trying out various moans, groans, and blood-chilling wails, as the source of the whimper.
She sucked in a deep breath before tapping the door.
Inside the office, an odd clacking noise started up, grew louder, then stopped. When nothing else happened, she chalked up the sound to office equipment, and knocked again, more assertively this time.
She swore she heard a faint panting before silence descended once more.
A mental pep talk about weird environments perked her up. She tried the handle. It didn’t budge.
Undeterred, she fished inside her purse for the key, used it, and tip-toed inside.
Please let me know your reaction. Since Cold Feet Fever is still in the ‘vomit version’ stage, I welcome all comments, critique, and suggestions from readers.