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Karyn Bristol

Karyn Bristol

Author, Psychotherapist, and Mom. Wife, Daughter, Friend. In all these roles, I am moved by people--in all their beautiful imperfection. (Which means that hopefully, my flaws have a place too.)

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If The Truth is a Theory hits 500 pre-orders by Wednesday 16 May 2018 1 P.M. UTC, then it will be queried to 10 traditional publishers when the campaign ends. How it works

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The Truth is a Theory

The Truth is a Theory is the story of the assumptions we make about important people in our lives, and how these fatally flawed "truths" play out for four friends.

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Manuscript

Literary Fiction #1 in Literary Fiction
113,000 words
100% complete
Hopewell, New Jersey
3 publishers interested

Synopsis

How do you define the truth? Is it what you see? Is it what you are told by a beloved partner, a best friend, a trusted parent? Is it the whispers you hear in the halls of your life?

Allie, Megan, Zoe, and Tess have the kind of life-long friendship that can handle the rapid-fire banter of dates and deadlines, and the slow-motion tears of heartbreak. Even so, they have secrets. And parts of their lives that even they don’t want to think about.

Allie is a master at shutting out parts of her life. She’s had a lot of practice; her mother walked out on her when she was four and was never heard from again. Allie survived by becoming the toast of the party--any party--and never looking back. But as a thirty-two-year-old mother of two, parties have morphed into playdates and the closest she gets to Dom Pérignon is watered-down Mott’s. When her husband storms out, growling “figure out what you want”, she realizes she has no idea. And she knows that she can’t move forward until she pries open the lid on her past, on the truth about what happened to her mother.

As Allie tries to piece her life together, her crutch is her treasured circle of friends. Until their own lives begin to fracture with the heartbreak of date rape, alcoholism, and infidelity.

As all four women struggle with what life has thrown at them, they wonder, if you ever find the truth, does it heal or destroy you?

Outline

Structure:
There are 13 Chapters in The Truth is a Theory.

Each chapter starts with a journal entry, written in the first person, in the main character’s POV (Allie). It is written in present tense. Each journal entry (the beginning of each chapter) is written chronologically, every month, for 13 months.  

The bulk of each chapter is written in third person, and alternates in sections between each of the four friend’s POV (Allie, Megan, Zoe, and Tess). This main part of the chapter takes the reader back in the women’s lives and builds up to the present. Chapter One starts when the women are college freshmen, and each subsequent chapter takes place the following year, for 13 years.    

In the final chapter, both the Journal Entry and the bulk of the chapter take place in the same week of time in the present tense.

The book begins when Allie’s husband walks out, and ends 13 months later.  

Below is a general outline, and it includes somewhat of a *Spoiler alert*:

Allie Sexton is terrified of the truth. Twenty-eight years ago, her mother disappeared; never to be heard from again. Allie survived by becoming the toast of the party—any party—and never looking back. But as a thirty-two-year-old mother of two, parties have morphed into playdates, and the closest she gets to Dom Pérignon is watered-down Mott’s. Even her once golden marriage has tarnished into a rote, “How was your day” fly-by.  When her husband storms out, growling “until you figure out what you want,” she is panicked that the answer to so simple a task may forever elude her. This time, instead of burying her pain and confusion, she straightens her shoulders and sifts back through her life—through the mica and the silt—knowing that the key to her future lies at rock bottom, in the truth about her mother.

As Allie’s story unravels, her crutch is her treasured circle of friends; until their own lives begin to fracture. Steadfast Megan, who grounds her friends’ lightning with her golden-rule perspective, is ripped apart by the horror and ambiguity of being raped by a date. Devin’s relentless demon—her nail-biting insecurity—drives her into an affair to soothe her cutting doubts about her husband. Wickedly sexy Zoe drowns herself in vodka after she pulls out all the stops to win Devin’s husband, including labeling him the father of her unborn child.    

In a surprising shift of roles, Allie becomes the shoulder for each of these women, and in helping them find their own hidden strengths she discovers she is a lot more than social glitter. She decides to fight for her marriage, and her husband is by her side when she finally learns the shocking truth about her mother.  

Allie’s world flips upside-down, but only for a moment.  She understands now that truth—and life—are subjective. Everyone’s story has seismic plot twists. Allie now knows that it is up to the author to interpret each twist, assign it symbolism, and weave it all into a personal narrative. And then to move onto the next chapter.

Audience

The target audience for this literary fiction/women’s fiction is women over 30. The Truth is a Theory could be a popular book club book.

This idea for this story had been percolating with me for a while, but it really came into focus when my kids were little, and my marriage was on the back burner (or off the stove completely) because of the demands of young kids, careers, life. I was smack in the middle of a frantic life that was all about other people’s needs, and it was almost impossible to find myself while racing to the supermarket before work, or while slapping mac-n-cheese together with one hand and soothing a toddler meltdown with the other, or while shampooing the dog after a midnight skunking incident. Nevermind finding time to nurture my marriage. Sound bites became the unfortunate but necessary language between my husband and I. And I’m pretty sure that “sound bite” is not one of the five love languages.  

We all tend to fill in the blanks of what we don’t know with our own assumptions. When sound bites are the norm, there is a lot of space for assumptions. And those assumptions then become truth. I started to wonder, what happens to a relationship when our assumptions--our working truths--are wildly off?

And the story of Allie’s crumbling marriage was born.  (As was my passion for becoming a marriage counselor.)

As a psychotherapist and marriage counselor, I help people everyday who are struggling to find themselves, or find their partners, or find their truth through the tentacles of faulty assumptions--their own, their partner’s, the world’s.

Just as there are pieces of me in each of these women’s stories, I am sure readers will resonate with and find pieces of themselves in the pages of The Truth is a Theory.

Author

Karyn Bristol, MSW, LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and a writer. In both realms her passion lies in helping people heal; in helping people connect fully with themselves and with loved ones, with the past and with the present. Karyn is an ICEEFT Certified EFT Couples Supervisor and Therapist, and writes a blog to help other therapists learn and practice Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy. She has an MSW from Boston College, and a BA from Dickinson College. Karyn has a private psychotherapy practice in Princeton, NJ. She lives with her husband, three amazing children, and a goofy black Labrador.

Promotion

1. Prior to becoming an author and Psychotherapist, I worked in Public Relations in Manhattan for many years. I understand the strategy and the importance of marketing. I also consult with a marketing executive, and would consider hiring him or another one to formalize and operationalize the marketing of the book. 

2.  I have created an author website, www.karynbristol.com, highlighting the new book, with a “pre-order” link that will link to my publishizer page.

3. Social Netwroking campaign: I plan to create buzz in all my social media outlets, and have linked them all through Hootsuite to streamline the process. I have created a separate author Facebook page in addition to my personal Facebook page.

4. Prior to launch, I plan to send out a buzz-building Email campaign.

5. I will market the book on my professional Psychotherapist blog.  

6. I have created and built (and then re-built when we moved) my private psychotherapy practice from the ground up, twice starting from zero clients and growing in just a year or two to a full-time business-- with a waiting list. I plan to put this kind of determination and hustle into the marketing and promotion of myself as an author and of this book.

Competition

The Truth is a Theory is a story of people you know, people you wish you knew. It is a portrayal of relationships, in all their rich beauty and flawed imperfection. The story sweeps the reader up in snappy, rapid-fire banter of the four women’s public selves, and then takes the reader by the hand, behind closed doors, into the character’s deeply personal, emotionally nuanced private lives.

It’s competition are books that also do both, like Liane Moriarty’s Big Little Lies.  

Sample

Chapter 1

Saturday morning
She had to watch. She tried to anchor herself in the kitchen, to hot coffee and the beginnings of a list—mac & cheese, milk—but as the storm door banged shut on her marriage, she dropped the pen and rushed to the glass, to Dana’s broad-shouldered march towards the car.
She opened her mouth, then snapped it shut as a jumble of longing, regrets, and wishes surged up and snagged in her throat. She reached out her hand and it stalled against the windowpane, her diamond wedding band shooting flares in the morning sun. Her fingertips pressed against the cold glass. Her hand, her body was trembling.  
She willed herself numb, begged the chill of the glass to freeze her, make her immune to the pain. It was something she was good at, walling herself off from hurt, a skill she laughed off as a party trick with friends, ha-ha, just another one of her quirks. But it wasn’t a trick; it was survival. Other people ask for a hug when they’re feeling lonely or scared. She had taught herself not to feel.
This morning though, as she watched Dana walk away, numbness failed her. Instead, all five senses were jacked up and bombarding her, distracting her from the moment, the meaning, as if they had stepped forward and said to her heart, “Don’t worry, we’ll handle this.” Her cheek stung from Dana’s weird, last minute lean-in (was it intended to be a kiss? A hug? The reality was more scrape than caress because of her surprised flinch as his face came close). Her sinuses burned with his smell, Old Spice slapped on over restless, clammy sweat, and her ears were screaming with the echo of his “Okay”, the only word he’d spoken this morning, choked out after he bent in and straightened back up. Okay what? Okay, that chore’s done? Okay, I’m out of here? This is all going to be okay? She couldn’t see how.
Her eyes zeroed in on Dana, his rumpled hair, his wrinkled shirt, a look that years ago boasted of a late night of exotic cocktails and a need to touch, to slide hands in back pockets, to drape blue-jeaned legs over each other, and hours later, to fight off sleep because of just one more thing to say. Now it was simply an acknowledgement of uninspired exhaustion. She wondered if he had slept in his clothes. Or slept at all. She rubbed her eyes.
She focused on his blue running shoes, knotted together and dangling off of, oh God how many bags? Her heart skipped a beat. Clearly after all was said and done a rapid getaway was crucial, no back and forth to load the car. Perhaps no “back” at all. She swallowed hard.
He was leaving.
The words had been handed to her last night over routine Chicken Piccata and the low murmur of the TV. His “Allie… ” had jolted her, lowered her fork; not so much the gravity in his tone, but that he’d said it at all. Addressing each other by first name after so many years was like a parent starting a sentence with your first, middle, and last name.
They hadn’t raised their voices; there had been no argument over the glasses of Chardonnay. Dana had presented his closing summary in his smooth legalese, in the way he was schooled at ironing the ache out of his words, and she soaked it in, her face still, the bullet points piercing her, drawing blood but absolutely no visible tears.
He was leaving.
She couldn’t hear the soft thud of each bag hitting the leather car seat, but as she stood behind the glass she could feel it, and every one punched a purple bruise on her heart. He glanced back at her as he shut the door, a quick shot of his broken expression, his weariness, and their eyes wrapped around each other.
And he was everything.  
She didn’t know what to do with her arms, and for a moment this frustration almost reduced her to tears. She crossed them over her chest, but didn’t like that statement and thrust them down at her sides, where they hung, flaccid and useless. It was unbearable, this dilemma with her arms, and if she could have cut them off to solve it, she would have. She cast around for something to touch, to hang onto; her only option was a princess umbrella that one of the kids had dropped by the door. Without hesitation, she bent and straightened, her fingers a vise around the smooth plastic.
Dana was behind the wheel. She raised the garish pink handle to wave, and her arm—extended now like the Statue of Liberty with a Disney prop—stalled in the air. As if she was commanding Stop! or maybe had a question.  
And the black Volvo drove away.

Journal Entry #1
Saturday night
June 10, 2000
I’m afraid of being alone. I’m wide awake in the bowels of my first night without Dana, and although I’ve plugged in and clicked on every slice of artificial life I could get my hands on—lights, TV, computer, both baby monitors—it’s like I’ve tried to light up the Amazon with a nightlight. I’m acutely aware that just beyond the yellow glow sprawls the bottomless dark, where there is no edge to my emptiness, no warm skin to delineate where I end and the dead, hollowed-out space around me begins.
Sheer desperation cracked open this journal. But the calisthenics of writing is helpful, especially during commercials when it feels like my date has just gone to the bathroom and I’m alone at the bar pretending I’ve got a lot on my mind. The first mark, however, was daunting. The blank page sneered, daring me to begin, but the hovering, “How did I get here?” seemed so trite. In thirty-two years I’ve walked through many doors, but it’s not as if any of them loomed before me with a Let’s Make a Deal number above it and a heart-pounding decision attached. I floated through most of my life carelessly, unceremoniously, and the unselected doors evaporated in my wake.
The journal was not my idea. About a month ago, Zoe—who I now believe is psychic—dragged me to her therapist. Celia was younger than I expected and pretty, although she tried to mute it with a pair of thick, black-framed glasses, which probably did make me sit a little straighter. She suggested the journal. I backpedaled, stammered that when I was younger, writing in a journal was dangerous. I’ve always been terrified to pick up a pen and begin, lest the pen, on its own like the moving piece of a Ouija board, suddenly decided to scratch away at my smile to see what churned just below the surface.
But ulcerous desperation—which has a taste by the way, a mix of tin and white chalk—shrinks the world into black or white. Curl up into yourself, or dare.  
And so, I have picked up a pen.

September 1986: Freshman Year
Erikson College
Allie Mussoni scraped her flip-flop through a small pile of sand on the sidewalk; she was going to scream if her father didn’t say something soon. They had been standing among her small army of duffel bags and brown cardboard boxes for hours while he wallowed in indecision about how to handle the send-off. Say something wise? That would have involved some preparation. Hug? Not in her father’s repertoire. Shake hands? Oh my God. She jammed her hands into the pockets of her Levi’s mini-skirt and clenched her fists so tightly that her nails cut into the soft skin of her palms. The bustle of students, of the world, streamed by her; she glued her eyes to the ground, loath to offer anyone a window into her purgatory. Tiny black ants, resigned to the fact that their home had been destroyed again, marched around her feet and towards her father’s—a film of dust had dimmed the sheen of his loafers. She fought the urge to tear her hair out. One, two, three.  
She rose up on the tips of her pink rubber soles and gave him a peck on the cheek. “Bye Dad, thanks for the ride.” She was already gliding away. “I’ll grab all this stuff after I check out my room,” she said to the world in front of her. Maybe the breeze would blow it back to him.  
She picked up speed and ran towards the red brick dorm, leaving him with his hands deep in his pressed khaki pockets. She turned around once, at the top of the stairs to wave, and saw him with his head bent, sagging towards the driver-side door of his sparkling silver sedan. He didn’t look up, and she didn’t wait.
Her flip-flops thwacked loudly as she ran down the dark green linoleum hallway; parked baggage and emotionally charged students and parents popped up in front of her, causing her to swerve and stumble, littering crumpled sorry’s and excuse me’s in her wake. Number twenty-seven. She paused to catch her breath in the open door. Her new home. A square overhead light, spotted with the shadows of dead bugs, threw harshness around the room, illuminating the patched cinder-block walls, the nicked wooden furniture, the scuffed linoleum. Across the room, a redhead leaned on the windowsill, forehead against the glass.
Allie ran her hands through her long brown hair, and forced the corners of her mouth up. “So where do we pick up our leg chains and standard-issue orange garb?” She stepped into the room and dropped her purse on a gray-and-white-striped plastic mattress.
Her roommate spun around. Red, puffy eyes, but Allie could see someone else was skilled in the decorative smile.
“It is pretty grim. But I think we can make it cute.” The girl peered past Allie; Allie guessed she was expecting a set of parents to stagger in with boxes.
Allie smiled. “You’re an optimist.” She stuck out her hand. “I’m Allie.”
Megan introduced herself and glanced at all of her latched suitcases and taped boxes stacked neatly in a corner. “I didn’t want to start without you.”
“Thanks. It doesn’t matter which bed I get or anything.” Allie surveyed the identical sets of beds, desks, and bureaus. Her green eyes darted back to one of the desks. “On the other hand, I’ll take the one with I love Mouse carved on it.”
“You’re kidding me. Mouse?”
“That’s what it says. Frightening, huh?”
“Do you think he gave himself that name or earned it somehow?”
“I’m scared for him in either scenario,” Allie said. “But the prize goes to the girl who loved him and just had to eternalize it on this sorry desk.”
“Maybe he’s cute.”
“Mouse? Now I’m scared for you.”  
“I can only imagine the field day my family would have if I came home and said, ‘Mom, meet Mouse.’ There would be mass hysteria, and I’m not talking about panic,” Megan said.
Allie dropped onto the wooden desk chair and slid her hand over the cuts on the desk. I could come home with an Orangutan and no one would raise an eyebrow.
“Do you need help with your stuff, or… ” Megan’s finger scraped at the cuticle on her thumb.
“Thanks, I left it all out on the sidewalk. And there are tons of frat guys out there helping new kids move in. Charitable, don’t you think? Funny, they don’t seem interested in helping the freshmen boys.” Her eyes twinkled. “Let’s go introduce ourselves and point them in this direction.”
Megan paled a shade and scanned the bare walls. “You don’t have a mirror, do you?”
Allie shook her head. “It’s all outside. Come on, you look great.”
Megan sighed, smoothed down her hair, then her shorts, and followed Allie out.  
#
“Music or TV?” Allie asked as the last box was dumped on the floor. She wanted to dive right in; the emptiness of the room made her nervous.
“Music.” Megan clicked on the stereo.
“Do you mind if I flip this on too?” Allie plugged in her TV. “It’s habit; I’ll mute it.”
Megan pulled folded sheets and a rainbow-colored comforter out of an enormous Bed & Bath bag, and then made her bed with care, smoothing down the yellow sheets, throwing the comforter up in the air and then snapping it so that it billowed out over the bed and settled across it like a sigh.
“Don’t judge,” Megan said as she pulled a stuffed yellow Labrador out of a bag.  
“I’m the last person who should hold a gavel,” Allie said. Then grabbing a hammer and nails, she nodded towards the cheaply framed posters leaning against the wall. “What do you think?”
Megan stared at the lineup. “Yours.”
“Really? I like Ansel Adams.”
“Me too. But I bet every room on this floor will have one. Yours will give the room more flavor.”
“Let’s put them all up.” Allie picked up her funky ad for a cosmetics company—a huge pair of cherry red lips on a metallic silver background. She climbed up on her bed. “So how was your summer?” She slammed the hammer against a nail. Cement crumbled around the hole and fell onto her bed. “Uh oh.” She looked at Megan and smiled at her roommate’s wide-eyed look. “It’s okay, we’ll just take some posters out of the frames and tape them up instead.” She started pulling the frame apart. “This one can cover the hole. And then if we ever want to tunnel into the next room, we’ve got a head start.”
Megan nodded.
Allie sat down on her bed, brushed some cement dust off her quilt, and continued to pry the frame apart. “So, your summer?”
“It was good. I lifeguarded during the day, at night I just hung out with friends.”
“You’re lucky on both counts. I waitressed a lot, anything to get out of the house. And I didn’t see much of my friends.”
Megan’s quiet made Allie look up and add, “Boarding school. Everyone’s all over the map.”
“Wow, that’s hard.”
Allie nodded. “You go from being glued together twenty-four/seven to being stranded at home in a neighborhood that’s moved on without you. It’s all or nothing. My boyfriend lives in Massachusetts and I think I spent every cent I made this summer getting up there on the weekends. Luckily the phone bill didn’t arrive before I left. My dad’s gonna have a heart attack when he gets it.”
“Where’s he now, your boyfriend?” Megan handed Allie the next poster, a splashy vodka ad with two martini glasses bending towards each other; the tagline read Absolut Attraction. “You better take it out of the frame, I don’t want to ruin it.”
“Princeton,” Allie said as she reached for the frame. “I know,” she said when she caught Megan’s impressed look. “For about a minute we considered going to the same college, but there was the small problem of the difference in our GPA’s.”
Megan chewed on her fingernail. “I know how that goes, my brothers are all at Ivys.”
“Sounds like a lot of pressure for you,” Allie said.
Megan nodded.
“Dana worked his butt off for his grades, plus, his father went to Princeton, so he felt like he didn’t have a lot of choice.”
“How’d you guys do it? At boarding school, seeing each other all the time like that? Didn’t you get sick of each other?”
“No, it was great actually. I mean, it can definitely get intense, but we had our own space too, time with friends… mostly because there’s a ton of rules and a jammed schedule with classes and sports, so there’s a lot of forced separation.” She paused a moment. “Of course, sometimes when we were together I wanted space, and when we were apart I wanted to be together.” She shook her head. “But it worked. Dana is super-driven, as in, he really wanted to get that A+, so he had to block me out sometimes.” She smiled.
“And the rules blocked us too,” she continued. “Early on he got caught sneaking into my dorm room; I was really sick and he was bringing me ginger ale. He even held my hair as I was bent over the toilet… ”
“Now that’s love,” Megan said with a half-smile.
“That’s actually how he got caught, in the bathroom, holding back my hair. They didn’t suspend him because it was so clearly not a booty call, but we knew if he got caught again, we might both get suspended. So we didn’t sneak around after that, as tempting as it was. What about you, did you leave anyone behind?”
“Not really, no. I had a huge crush on a guy I worked with, like blushing-every-time-he-looked-at-me crush. And he must have noticed because we actually got together a few nights ago at this keg party.”
“Sounds good.”
“Except I, mid-kiss and thinking I was so college, asked him straight out if this was a one night stand. He just looked at me like I had two heads and eased himself right out of there.” She giggled. “Clearly it was a special night for him.”
Allie laughed.
“Hey, I was just getting the ground rules clear,” Megan said.
“Very romantic.”
“I have to admit, reality didn’t quite match the fantasy.”
“He sounds like a prince.” Allie grinned. “But I guess you have to kiss a lot of,” she paused, glanced at the wooden desk, “mice before… ”
“A lot of rats. A lot of rats is more like it.” Megan smiled.  
#
“Oh my God.” Allie gazed into the cavernous cafeteria, her eyes glittering along with the carnival in front of her. She looked at Megan. “Ready?”
Not really was on Megan’s lips, but she nodded instead and tossed her long copper hair.
Allie handed her laminated meal card to the bored gatekeeper and stepped inside for lunch. Megan followed as closely as possible and tried not to gawk. After two days of freshmen orientation, the school was ablaze with the fuel of the entire student body. The gently sloping, block-lettered signs—“Welcome Class of 1990!” and “The Choir Wants You”—that just last night had smiled down from the bland off-white walls were now invisible against the sun-bronzed upperclassmen who were hugging, hi-fiving, and screaming high-pitched, primal monosyllables as they reunited with friends they hadn’t seen in months.
The freshmen, on the other hand, were trying to melt into the woodwork; any cockiness from orientation had shriveled up and died. The class of 1990 was now fully aware of their position on the totem pole, and they were shamelessly trying to watch, listen, and soak up the unspoken laws and hierarchy of this new culture.  
Megan picked up her pace to match Allie’s near skip and grabbed an blue food service tray.
#
Someone at the crammed fraternity table must have seen him coming. As Gavin Keller coasted across the room with his tray, brothers slid over to make space, the Red Sea parting down the middle. Gavin eased his broad shoulders in between his buddies’ football jerseys, and then without a word, two sophomores got up to make room for his girlfriend Tori and her friend.
“Good to see you, man.” One of the displaced sophomores clapped Gavin on the back.
“You too. Catch ya later.” Gavin bit into an institutionally flat cheeseburger. The splintered conversations around the table had stalled, only one counted now.
“How was the road trip?” a brother lobbed at Gavin.
Gavin chewed. “Awesome. The Rabbit broke down right outside of San Diego, so that’s where we landed for a while.” He shot a bemused look down the table to one of his traveling companions, Brian.
“You’re lucky you didn’t break down in, like, Ohio,” someone said.
“Oh, I don’t know,” Gavin caught eyes with Brian again, “Ohio had its moments.”
Brian chuckled.
“California must have been cool,” the first brother said.
“It was.” Gavin grinned. “Mikey learned to surf.”
Brian full-out laughed back.
There was a seconds-long pause at the table as the audience waited for more; then the group guffawed at a joke only two shared.
Gavin could feel Tori tense beside him and almost hear her gnashing teeth underneath her bright smile. He knew his summer with the guys pissed her off, and his sporadic calls from the road had only made it worse. But he also knew she wouldn’t fight with him about it. He put his hand on her thigh.
“So what do you think,” she said, “should we go to the barbecue tonight?”
Gavin turned to answer her, but was momentarily stunned by a tall, dark-haired girl sauntering by the table. Her short, almost boyish haircut and subtle makeup were distinct in a sea of long hair and pink frosted lip gloss, and although she was just dressed in jeans and a white sleeveless tee, she looked like she had been put together by a stylist as no detail from cool boots to pale nail polish to understated silver jewelry had been overlooked.
He felt as though all chatter quieted as she breezed by, and whether it did or not, he knew almost everyone in her vicinity—men and women—were assigning her a place in the world: Hook up! Sorority pledge! Competition! Zoe Chapin seemed not to notice; her piercing blue eyes stared straight ahead as if she knew exactly where she was going. Gavin was riveted, even though she was diametrically opposed to the petite, watery blondes he usually ended up with. Like Tori.
“Gavin?”
“Uh, I don’t know.” He ripped his eyes from Zoe and swiveled back to his girlfriend. “Why don’t you go with Emily and Sarah, and if we go, I’ll catch you there. Otherwise, just meet me at the House later.” He watched her face fall at the news that his “we” meant him and his brothers. “We’re definitely having a party,” he added to justify his brush off. He couldn’t resist scanning the room to see where Zoe had landed with her lunch.
Tori flashed another one of her super-bright smiles that Gavin knew garaged a private tantrum. She stood up. “I’ll see you later then.” She fluffed her long blonde hair and eyed her friend across the table. “Ready to go, Em?”
Emily put down her forkful of salad and stood up.
Tori walked off, with one more hair toss for good measure.
“Wow, did you guys see her?” said Rich, a fraternity brother who tried his best to see everything.
“A little mad, huh?” Gavin grimaced, and again dragged his focus away from Zoe and back to the table.
“No. Well yeah, Tori was mad. But I meant that freshman striker. Tall, leggy… ” Rich had created what he thought was a cool classification for girls, striker meant really cute; bomber—really ugly. Unfortunately, it had stuck. At least with Rich.
“I saw her,” Gavin said. And any thoughts of Tori being mad drifted off as his mind returned to the gorgeous girl whose name he didn’t know. Yet.

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Koehler Books logo Koehler Books

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The author hasn't added any updates, yet.

  • Dana Lynch on April 16, 2018, 10:42 a.m.

    Congratulations Karyn!!

  • Anne Klein on April 16, 2018, 11:30 a.m.

    You are AMAZING! Good luck with the book! XO

  • Karen Vedus on April 16, 2018, 11:31 a.m.

    Sounds amazing!

  • Catherine Coyle on April 16, 2018, 12:08 p.m.

    Congratulations Plicky!!! Love you!

  • helen whitehead on April 16, 2018, 12:10 p.m.

    So excited for you Karyn. Can't wait to receive my copy!! Good luck with the goal:) Helen

  • Karen Faryniak on April 16, 2018, 12:40 p.m.

    Congrats on your book, Karyn! Can't wait to read it.

  • Elizbeth Herlihy on April 16, 2018, 1:03 p.m.

    Good Luck -- I'll share to see if you can sell more

  • Kathleen Grey on April 16, 2018, 1:09 p.m.

    Can't wait to read it Karyn!

  • George Kuckel on April 16, 2018, 1:12 p.m.

    This is VERY exciting! Good Luck!

  • Tracy Bennett on April 16, 2018, 1:14 p.m.

    I am SO excited and SO proud! Congratulations! I can hardly wait to read and share your book!

  • George Kuckel on April 16, 2018, 1:15 p.m.

    Can't wait to share these extra copies with friends.

  • Lindsay Schwartz on April 16, 2018, 1:18 p.m.

    My book club besties and I are TOTALLY bringing you back to Stow for a discussion! Love you and can’t wait to read your book!!

  • Katharine Bogle on April 16, 2018, 1:19 p.m.

    I am a friend of Leslie Pell. Congratulations on your first Book!

  • Meg Soriano on April 16, 2018, 1:21 p.m.

    Congratulations!

  • Susan Mantione on April 16, 2018, 1:26 p.m.

    Congrats! I am SO excited for you! What an accomplishment! Bragging rights that I know you!

  • Robin McConaughy on April 16, 2018, 1:43 p.m.

    Good luck Karyn!

  • Lisa Weintraub on April 16, 2018, 2:03 p.m.

    Looking forward to reading the book!

  • roxane yonan on April 16, 2018, 2:05 p.m.

    You are wonderufl!

  • Dina Brewer on April 16, 2018, 2:14 p.m.

    Congrats Karyn!! Can't wait to read it and share all your wisdom with family and friends. Good luck!
    Dina

  • Karen Halls Jenkins on April 16, 2018, 2:26 p.m.

    Good luck and congrats Karyn #1!

  • jennifer tashima on April 16, 2018, 3:22 p.m.

    Can't wait to read it! ❤️

  • Maria Lorditch on April 16, 2018, 3:32 p.m.

    Went through this time! Can't wait to read it and pitch it to my book group for next year's line up! We vote for books in June. You will have to come to our group to talk about it if that happens!
    Again, so so proud of you - my friend, the author!!

    xoxo

    Maria

  • Donna McDonnell on April 16, 2018, 3:48 p.m.

    Congratulations Karyn! Can't wait to read the book and share it with my friends! XXOO

  • Kathrine Pickett on April 16, 2018, 4:44 p.m.

    I cannot wait to read this book. Happy to help Karyn.

  • Yana Rodgers on April 16, 2018, 4:49 p.m.

    Good luck Karyn with your book launch and sales! I'm so proud of you for putting yourself out there and taking this chance and for providing the world with a wonderful new work of fiction :)

  • Mary Wightman on April 16, 2018, 5:31 p.m.

    Best of luck!

  • Lisa Marin on April 16, 2018, 7:08 p.m.

    Good luck!

  • Kimberly Bates McCarl on April 16, 2018, 7:09 p.m.

    All the best Karyn. I look forward to reading your book.

  • Lynn Grandchamp on April 16, 2018, 7:13 p.m.

    Can’t wait to read it! Best of luck - what an amazing accomplishment

  • Sara Ritchie on April 16, 2018, 7:28 p.m.

    Congratulations! SO excited for you!!

  • Maureen Leming on April 16, 2018, 7:30 p.m.

    Congratulations and Good Luck! xo, Maureen

  • Kirsten Bushick on April 16, 2018, 7:59 p.m.

    May your dream come true! You deserve it <3

  • Trish Straine on April 16, 2018, 8:03 p.m.

    Good luck to you Karyn!

  • Maureeen Kane on April 16, 2018, 8:07 p.m.

    I am so proud of you!! xo

  • Heather Lawrence on April 16, 2018, 8:11 p.m.

    Congratulations! That is super cool! So excited to read it!

  • Whitney Green on April 16, 2018, 8:34 p.m.

    I could not be more excited for you or for my book to arrive! 😍 I am sharing your info far and wide! CONGRATULATIONS getting this far! Xoxo
    -
    💗 Whitney (Ritchie) Green

  • Edie Webb on April 16, 2018, 11:52 p.m.

    Karyn, I am so excited to read your book!!!! Xo

  • Tom Pitasi on April 17, 2018, 12:30 a.m.

    Hey Karen hope all your dreams come true. Good luck to you.

  • Michelle Burgess on April 17, 2018, 1:02 a.m.

    All the best Karyn XO

  • Sarah Sabalot on April 17, 2018, 1:07 a.m.

    Can’t wait to read it! I hope you are well. You made such a difference for me. I’m excited to see the wonderful work you are doing and the great insight you are sharing with the world. :)

  • Claire Capeci on April 17, 2018, 2:36 a.m.

    Congrats Karyn! I can’t wait to read your book! I hope you sell a million of them❤️

  • Kim Ritchie on April 17, 2018, 3 a.m.

    Hugs to you!!!

  • Cynthia Wallace on April 17, 2018, 10:19 a.m.

    Looking forward to reading your book!

  • Kate Bricker on April 17, 2018, 11:05 a.m.

    So excited for you Karyn! And I can’t wait to read your book:))

  • Harry Groome on April 17, 2018, 11:28 a.m.

    the site and this page looks awesome. great job with the video too.

  • Kirstin Krinsky on April 17, 2018, 2:05 p.m.

    Just ordered my copy!

  • Genny Moriarty on April 17, 2018, 3:02 p.m.

    You are an inspiration, Karyn. Can't wait to read the finished book. Love you!! xo xo xo

  • Donna Olson on April 17, 2018, 3:20 p.m.

    Hi Karyn! This is so exciting! Congratulations and I really look forward to reading the book!. Hope our paths cross again some day.

  • Ellen Splaver on April 17, 2018, 3:39 p.m.

    Karyn, how exciting!!! I'm so happy for you. I'm looking forward to reading this book. What a pleasure to support you in this:) Please let me know how this goes!! Hugs. ellen splaver

  • Louise Hastings on April 17, 2018, 3:58 p.m.

    What an accomplishment!

  • Audrey Poe on April 17, 2018, 4:02 p.m.

    Excited for your book release.

  • Pam Wolf on April 17, 2018, 5:20 p.m.

    I am so looking forward to reading your book Karen. Congratulations!!

  • Donna Fitzgerald on April 17, 2018, 6:38 p.m.

    Congrats on this wonderful chapter in your life! -pun intended ;)

  • Becky Breed Richardson on April 17, 2018, 7:03 p.m.

    Can't wait to read it! Congratulations!

  • Christina Breen on April 17, 2018, 7:46 p.m.

    Go Karyn Go! Love, the Breens

  • Family Eyl on April 17, 2018, 8:35 p.m.

    We love you!

  • Harry Groome on April 17, 2018, 9:08 p.m.

    Good Luck!

  • Lina Zahlan on April 17, 2018, 9:39 p.m.

    Congrats on reaching your dream!

  • Sarah Klein on April 18, 2018, 12:19 a.m.

    Congrats Karyn, looking forward to reading it and will share with my book group.

  • Julie Salit on April 18, 2018, 1:48 a.m.

    Great work, Friend! Love you!

  • Charlie Fuller on April 18, 2018, 12:10 p.m.

    Congratulations! Best of luck! Miss you and your family! C

  • Kim Robb on April 18, 2018, 2:27 p.m.

    You go girl! XO

  • Ora Gourarie on April 18, 2018, 7:28 p.m.

    Can’t wait—you are such a good writer!

  • Christina Parker on April 18, 2018, 10:55 p.m.

    Can’t wait to read it!

  • Marybeth Shay on April 18, 2018, 11:13 p.m.

    Congratulations Karyn!!!!

  • Leigh Segal on April 19, 2018, 12:38 a.m.

    Congrats Karyn! Looking forward to a good read! -Leigh and Bill

  • Brian Abraham on April 19, 2018, 1:01 a.m.

    Good luck, Karyn. After 10 years, never forget that this is all happening now because you are...
    WORTHY!

    Brian

  • Susan Berthiaume on April 19, 2018, 1:56 a.m.

    The book sounds like a great read-Looking forward to reading it and many others in the future. From the samples I read I would say you are well on your way! Enjoy the journey!

  • Marla Cohen on April 19, 2018, 3:39 a.m.

    Congratulations on this remarkable accomplishment, Karyn. I can’t wait to receive my copy!

  • Lina Kogan on April 19, 2018, 4:21 a.m.

    Happy to support you upon Marla C’s recommendation. Looking forward to reading your book! Good luck!

  • Kim Chamberlain on April 19, 2018, 11:24 a.m.

    Way to go, little sis! I can’t wait to read it!

  • Stacie Brown on April 19, 2018, 11:39 a.m.

    Karyn - You are truly an inspiration in so many ways! I can't wait to read the book, and I will share this widely! Good Luck!!!

  • Adrienne Marchioni on April 19, 2018, 2:05 p.m.

    Your book sounds amazing! I can't wait to read it! Congratulations!!

  • Danielle Langer on April 19, 2018, 2:47 p.m.

    Hi Karyn, I am so excited to read your book...You always impressed me and can't imagine what you have come up with.. Best of Luck!!

  • Elana Broch on April 19, 2018, 7:01 p.m.

    Some day you will have to tell me how you had time to write a book. Best of luck!

  • Amy Hindley on April 20, 2018, 1:54 a.m.

    so so proud of you!! can’t wait to read it. xo

  • Gabrielle Salerno on April 20, 2018, 2:55 a.m.

    Karyn- So great!! I can't wait to read it! I just talked with my (Chapin) Book Club and your book just made the list! Maybe we can even have you as a guest speaker?! - B. Salerno

  • Rebecca Christianson on April 20, 2018, 7:55 p.m.

    Can’t wait to read it! So proud of you! What an amazing step!!

  • Tyler Lewis on April 21, 2018, 10 p.m.

    Looking forward to reading it Karyn and incredibly proud of your effort and courage in putting completing this project. I'm still trying to get the lawn raked and you just published book - probably ran a marathon while you were at it? Congratulations and thanks for sharing with all of us.

  • Tracey Post on April 22, 2018, 4:26 p.m.

    Congrats Karyn-so excited for you!

  • Donna Usiskin on April 22, 2018, 11:03 p.m.

    Karyn, I am thrilled to support an already impressive lady achieve yet another accomplishment - Congratulations! Our whole book club is looking forward to reading your novel. Best - Donna

  • April McCarthy on April 23, 2018, 1:10 a.m.

    The 500 pre-order goal is one more step on this journey. I can’t wait to see how far this adventure takes you! Wishing you much success in this and all future endeavors.

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