Sneak Peek: Lake Effect (Something a little different!)

They DoAnother Sunday, another week of Sneak Peek Sunday, a romance writer blog hop. Follow the link back to see what other authors are working on this week (please note that participating authors write in all genres and at all heat levels).

We know we’ve already posted a Sneak Peek from “Lake Effect” a couple of weeks ago, but this week we want to try something a little different. Our first short story comes out June 18th from Torquere Press, and while we’re ramping up to the release we want to talk a little about our process and try a new angle on this Sneak Peek thing.

Both Racheline and I have collaborative projects going with multiple people, and we know that every cowriting team has its own system and magic. And because of our particular structure — I’m based in DC, Racheline is in NYC, and on a good month we get to spend a grand two or three days total in the same physical space — we rapidly developed a System for writing and editing online.

Our collaborative tool of choice is Google Docs, and while we’re writing we leave each other notes, either in the text itself or as comments in the margins. Sometimes these notes are “pronouns are hard, help.” Sometimes it’s “rampant abuse of the past pluperfect, fix.” Sometimes it’s “Wait. Where did Plot Element X go??”

So here are six more paragraphs from “Lake Effect,” from the morning before Kyle and Daniel’s wedding. Daniel just wants to go wake his fiancee up in peace; Daniel’s mother wants him to shave (A note for the sake of Torquere that this is from the unedited version; all errors are our own):

“I’ve had a beard for years,” Daniel protests, whiplashed by the abrupt subject change.

“But it’s your wedding,” his mother says.

“And I’d like to look like myself for it. Plus, he likes it,” Daniel says, hoping he doesn’t sound too dirty about it as he hears Kyle’s footsteps coming downstairs.

His mother sighs, but at least lets the matter drop. Daniel gets up to get more coffee. Clearly today is going to require it and he wants to intercept Kyle for a proper good-morning greeting out of his mother’s eyesight, but Kyle bounces in with a tense smile and stands on his tiptoes for a quick kiss.

Kyle’s grown a little taller and a little broader than he was when they first got together and Pat had threatened to beat the shit out of Daniel for dating his jailbait baby brother, but only relatively. Kyle is tiny and not likely to ever get less tiny. Daniel loves it, even if their relative size differential makes people assume all sorts of things about their physical and emotional dynamic that are entirely not true

“Only twenty-four hours left,” Kyle whispers when he settles back onto his heels again. It’s not, Daniel knows, an I can’t wait to marry you. It’s an I can’t wait to get the fuck out of here again.

And our subsequent thread, over choice of profanity in that last sentence:

Racheline: Hell or fuck?

Erin: Probably fuck. For some reason I feel worry we’re over-fucking on this one. Which is a silly worry, because there’s about a fuck every square foot of everything else we write.

Which is true! So the fuck stayed.

And another thread, this time with some backstory that hadn’t made it in to the story yet and that we didn’t even know yet:

Racheline: Hey, who proposed. Because I feel like if it was Kyle, and no one knows that and it speaks to the relationship dynamic people don’t get.

Erin: It was totally Kyle. And that may be worth Daniel mentioning here for the O.o moment.

Yesterday, on an unrelated project, one of our notes was “No, no Popsicles until they’re hooking up.” We love writing process stories, and all of our stories themselves are processes unto themselves. When we’re lucky — which is most of the time — the process of creating the piece is as entertaining to us as the final piece.

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