Wednesday Novel Excerpt

Since I will likely be pounding away at my novel to increase my word count on Friday, I figured I'll get it out of the way now. Today's excerpt is a coming out story, because my novel is gay, somehow, even though I didn't plan it that way. Although I am a mostly straight woman*, I believe our world is richer for having gay people in it, and I am thankful that there is a full spectrum of sexuality in this world.

On to the excerpt:

When I was little girl growing up in Poland, I was always called CHLOPIECY**, like a boy. I have only brothers, so I like to play sports and climb trees, not playing with dolls or to braiding the hair. I have little girlfriends, of course, girls I carry books for and moon over, but I never think that I love only girls. But no one tell me that there are sometimes girls who like other girls, so when I am old enough, and a boy ask me to marry him, I accept.

He was a good boy, very smart and ambitious, and he wanted to come to America. So we get married, and we come to the United States. He work very hard in very hard jobs, and his bosses start to see how smart he is, so he work his way up the ladder, so as they say. He worked in the tool factory, yes, in New Britain? So he gets new job as boss, and we buy a small house, near to the factory so he can walk to work and come home for lunch, and then we have a baby boy, my Stanislaus. Only no one ever tell me about the play and the movie about the car named desire, no? So my baby is called Stanley Kowalski. Sometimes people would laugh when they hear his name and I don't know why, but now I know. He is nothing like the Stanley in the movie, though. My Stanley is a lamb, so gentle and sweet. He is a nurse in the Emergency Room at the hospital, now."

"So we live in the nice little house with our sweet little boy, and we have a nice marriage. I love my husband like a friend, and we are happy. We go to church and we have friends over and play cards and have some drinks, always a lot of fun. But one winter day, he was walking home from work, and a car slip on the ice and hit him, and he seem okay at first, but too much bleeding inside, and he died."

"I'm so sorry," Tina interjected. Rose smiled.

"I still miss him sometimes because he always knew how to make the right decision about everything. But if he was still alive, I would not have found the person I love more than life," and she squeezed Laura's hand, "so maybe God was just making things happen the way He does, in the mysterious way. Karol was a good man, and he take care of his family, so we have insurance money, and I pay off the little house and stay home with Stanley until he goes to school. But I don't like housekeeping, and I'm a strong woman, so I decide to go to work while Stanley is in school. This was in 1974, so there are now many woman working, many divorced woman, so it was not so hard to find a job. I go to work in a nursery, because I always like plants and I have a green thumb. And I work there all day, and come home at 3 for Stanley, and we have a very good life."

"But a lonely one, too," she continued. "As Stanley gets older, and doesn't need his mama so much, I take classes to get my English better, and I meet many men at church and at my class who want to take me out on a date, but I was not interested. I never ask myself why I was not interested, until I am reading about woman's liberation and read about lesbians, and I know that I am one of them, but I don't know what to do. I sometimes ask Karol, after I say my prayers and get into bed, Karol, what am I to do? But of course he cannot give me answer, so I try to imagine what he would do. And Karol was very honest man, and I think he would tell me that I have to always be honest, and not be ashamed of how God made me."

"So I look at my face in the mirror, and I say to myself I am lesbian, and that I want to love other woman, but I am not one to go to a bar for that purpose, for meeting woman. So I pray God will send someone to me."

"And then Laura came to work at the nursery, too. She was very quiet, but I like how she smiles, and I can make her laugh, like giggling, and I know she like me but I don't know how she like me, you know? So I know I have to be having courage, and I ask quiet Laura if she would like to come over for dinner, and she smile very shy and say yes. So I ask Stanley if he like to play over at his friend's house one night, and I make nice Polish dinner for Laura, and she come over and I maybe give her a few drinks to help her relax,"

"She was naughty, wasn't she, trying to take advantage of me like that?" Laura said, giggling.

"So we are having nice time together and laughing, but I am also getting nervous, because I'm not sure how to find out if she is also a lesbian. So as she is leaving, I walk her to the door, and I decide now I have to act like a man, like I am only taking what I deserve, and worry later if she likes to be with me, too. So she turns to say goodnight, and she is holding out her hand, like to shake, and I take her hand and pull her to me and I give her a kiss, first time I ever kiss a girl, and I know it is right thing for me, and I can tell Laura is liking me, too."

Tina smiled, "that is the sweetest story!" she said.
James had listened intently, and he nodded his head in agreement.

I make no claims about the quality of my writing, I'm just trying to tell a story in 50,000 words. But I would love feedback.

*I say mostly straight because the first time I fell in love, the first time I understood why they use the word "fall", it was with a woman.

**I used an online English to Polish translater and put in the word boyish, and this is what it came up with. I have no idea if it is accurate or not, but the character of Rose is very slightly based on a friend of my husband's, so I will ask her to translate it for me properly if I ever get around to editing.

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