Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Introductions, pt. 2: The Story


The novel, with the working title Common Ground, is a lesbian romance/fiction novel that will probably come in right around 75,000 words. I officially started writing the last week in June, but the characters and bits of the plot have been floating around in my imagination for much longer. Right now I seem to be averaging roughly 1000-2000 words per day, and I'd like to maintain that average. I'll be posting a word count at the end of each day, along with any thoughts on my progress.

Current word count: 24,391


Common Ground is a love story between two women who seek the same goals, but follow very different paths.

An unexpected loss on Capitol Hill leaves Amy Williams scrambling to find a new career path, and in a departure from her usual thoughtful behavior, she impulsively accepts a position teaching high school English. She is not sure how her shy persona will translate to the classroom -- or how her mature, reserved nature will adjust to Atlanta, the lesbian Mecca of the Southeast.

Brett Gallagher is young, brash and idealistic. Just out of a two-year stint working with Teach for America, she dreams of making the world (or at least the public school system) a more welcoming place for gay teens. She is charming and magnetic but seemingly incapable of an actual relationship, preferring instead one night stands and casual flings.

When the two women meet at an orientation for new teachers, sparks fly immediately, and the two women spend the summer getting to know each other better and falling in love. It is a difficult road because along with their political and personality differences, the constant parade of Brett’s ex-lovers makes Amy jealous and insecure. She fears that even if Brett is genuine about her feelings, it won't take long for her to lose interest.

By early fall, the two women are enjoying the bliss of a new relationship. But all of that changes when there is an incident of homophobia at the high school where they teach.

The event brings to a head their contrasting views on life and politics, including how out they need to be at work. While Brett risks her job to lead an unpopular crusade to have sexual orientation and gender identity listed as a protected group in the school's student handbook, Amy would prefer to avoid what she sees as a losing battle and instead work more subtly to teach students about tolerance and diversity. This dichotomy places a great deal of strain on their fledgling relationship, and both have to decide which compromises are worth making and how far they will go to reach common ground.

1 comment:

mercury said...

"What would you do if your lover was confronted frequently by women wearing only duct tape?"

"Sometimes even the most unexpected people can have passionate love affairs."

"The roller coaster ride of love is given vivid voice in Common Ground, an erotic work of literary fiction that unfortunately does not include vampires."