BP Note: Today we have Megan Hart visiting us and sponsoring a giveaway. Enjoy her guest post and don’t forget to enter to win a signed copy of Tear You Apart. The giveaway is open worldwide.
I don’t know which stop I got on at; I only know the train is going fast and the world outside becomes a blur. I should get off, but I don’t. The universe is playing a cosmic joke on me. Here I had my life-a good life with everything a woman could want-and suddenly, there is something more I didn’t know I could have. A chance for me to be satisfied and content and maybe even on occasion deliriously, amazingly, exuberantly happy.
So this is where I am, on a train that’s out of control, and I am not just a passenger. I’m the one shoveling the furnace full of coal to keep it going fast and faster.
If I could make myself believe it all happened by chance and I couldn’t help it, that I’ve been swept away, that it’s not my fault, that it’s fate…would that be easier? The truth is, I didn’t know I was looking for this until I found Will, but I must’ve been, all this time. And now it is not random, it is not fate, it is not being swept away.
This is my choice. And I don’t know how to stop.
Or even if I want to.
What You Do Is Who You Are…or Is It?
Will takes pictures of buildings.
I’m here to carry things or hold them while he points and shoots. Skyline shots, he tells me, are really popular for stock photography. At home, he’ll manipulate some of them in Photoshop.
“Post apocalyptic scenes,” he tells me with a grin. “Make the city look deserted. Ready for zombies, that sort of thing.”
I’m holding his tote bag over one shoulder, an extra-large cup of coffee in one hand. “Uh huh.”
“You don’t like zombies.” It’s not a question. He says it like he already knows me. He points his camera. Takes a picture. Doesn’t even look to see how it came out, just takes another. And another.
He gives me another grin, his eyes narrowing in sunshine that’s too bright for this time of year. “Vampires that sparkle?”
“No.” I laugh. Shake my head. “Not a horror fan.”
“What do you like, Elisabeth? Chick flicks? Rom-com?” Point. Shoot. He aims the camera in my direction and clicks before I can look away.
In Tear You Apart, Will is a photographer. He’s also an artist – meaning he takes pictures for a living, the kind that pay his bills. But he also makes art. Elisabeth works for an art gallery, but she is not an artist. She understands what makes art sell, but not how to make it. Yet Will’s art is important to her. The fact he is an artist is part of what makes her fall for him so hard, especially when he shows her through his art how much he understands her.
The envelope on the table comes open with a tug of the small red thread. Inside is bubble padding and two cardboard flats protecting two items. The first, black words in a scrawling hand on a plain white card.
The second, a photograph. It’s an 11 x 20 print, scattered stones on a bed of velvet. Oh, and there’s my heart-shaped rock, set off from the others. It’s more than just a photo. He’s added lines and color to it, little hints here and there. With ink and pen he’s transformed a beautiful shot into something unique. Special.
Will has given me art.
Because for Elisabeth, being known is a great aphrodisiac. The fact he pays attention, that he learns her enough to know what she likes, makes Will very attractive to her. His being an artist is all tangled up in the feelings they have for each other, and how they relate to each other.
I could’ve written these characters with different jobs or careers. I could’ve made what they DO completely separate from who they ARE. That’s the case with so many people, anyway. Their job is not who they are. It’s what puts food on the table and pays for the internet. Yet when I thought about Will and Elisabeth, all I could think of was how much what each of them does for a living affects the people they are, and how they relate to each other, and how neither of them could’ve found another person in the whole world that would “get” them in just that way.
Will and Elisabeth meet and fall in love; it’s a passion so strong and complicated and tangled and fraught with joys and sorrows so profound it tears them apart. Tear You Apart is not a romance, but it’s a love story, and one made deeper, I think, by the character’s professions. Art and beauty and the appreciation of it (or lack of it!) filters this book in a way a different set of occupations would not.
Disclaimer: I, like Elisabeth, can’t stand “modern” art. Starry Night moves me to tears when I see it. I like photography because it looks like something, and good art, to me, should make you FEEL. Just like a good book! For those who give my messy, complicated, heart-wrenching book a try, thank you. I hope it makes you feel.
BP Note: To enter leave a comment talking about what kind of art you enjoy or appreciate. Winner will be announced on Oct 9th. Good luck!