Hello there, Contemporary Romance Café readers. I’m Lucy, and I’m a loser.
(This is the part when you say, “Hello, Lucy.”)
Well, see, I don’t know if I’m a 100% loser today, as my eyeliner is ah-maze-ing, and I just ate tacos, but I’ve been there. Damn, have I been there. Entire failed careers haunt me like yesterday’s raw chicken in the garbage can. I’ve spent hours wondering to myself how other people do it — they just shimmy up the ol’ life ladder and succeed without bashing their knees or enduring break-through bleeding on their periods. There are times when you work so damn hard, and are talented, but it still will not add up to “success,” whatever the frick that is.
I poured all these “crying in the bathtub” feelings into the main character of my new contemporary romantic comedy THE DIMPLE OF DOOM. Her name is Samantha Lytton, and she’s a failed actress, a depressed secretary, and more involuntarily-[celibate] than a thirteen-year-old World of Warcraft enthusiast. In other words: life sucks. Songs are sung about the tall, and the beautiful, and the white-teethed, and effortlessly successful, but I wanted to write an ode to a “Shit! I dribbled taco sauce on my boobs” kind of woman. (Not that that just happened to me. My face is up here, THANK YOU.)
When Samantha finally flirts with a sexy accountant at the office Christmas party, her life jumps into awesome mode for the first time in a long while. Yay! And then the men with guns show up. That’s …less awesome. She’s kinda kidnapped. But she kidnaps him back. And then more goons ‘n’ guns. Suddenly, a boring life of Netflix by herself doesn’t seem so bad. Somewhere along the way, though, she begins to learn to roll with the punches — and to start punching back.
I wanted to write a book for all the women out there who get up every day and try, really try, even [when] the pay is shit, the weather is crap, the boss is demeaning, and the rewards are nonexistent. The ladies who search for a mate who wants to hold her hand when the going gets lay-on-the-floor-in-a-puddle-of-pathetic tough, yet who find only tone-deaf jerks. Who dream of being their own superheroines (superheroines who don’t wear high heels, though, because that’s so incredibly stupid. You can’t run in those!).
When there’s nowhere to go but up, then the sky’s the limit, right?
And that’s the thing – when you make the choice to be your own heroine, you’re automatically NOT a loser. The trying, especially when the odds are long and against you, is the heroic part — it’s just difficult to realize that when you seem to be rolling downhill like the proverbial poop.
So, for your consideration, here’s the blurb and a sample from THE DIMPLE OF DOOM, book one in the Samantha Lytton series. It’s on sale for $.99 right now! Now, I know that’s a buck out of your very important mozzarella cheese stick money, so do what you must. I would never devalue a fried snack — that’s just how I was raised.
If you’re a gamblin’ kinda person, tell me in the comments below what your favorite book is about a loser, and you could win a free copy! You can buy THE DIMPLE OF DOOM direct from Total-E-Bound, or at Amazon.com, AllRomance, Barnes and Noble.
Thanks so much for reading, and crazy thanks to Reese Ryan and The Contemporary Romance Café for allowing me to stop by.
THE DIMPLE OF DOOM
by Lucy Woodhull
It may sound like common sense, but never hump an art thief. Turns out, Samantha Lytton’s Common-Sense-O-Meter is super duper broken.
Failed actress Samantha Lytton is getting along just fine in her lonely little life when a charming criminal called Sam or Nate or maybe even Richmond kisses her, square dances most provocatively, opens his not-so-wicked heart, and gets her in trouble with not one, but two international art theft rings as well as the LAPD.
She’s either gonna end up in jail or famous. Maybe both.
Along the way, she fights for her life and falls for this funny, sexy disaster of a man… and learns that finding happily-ever-after with yourself is the first step to real contentment. A cute dimple is just the second.
* * *
THE DIMPLE OF DOOM
It’s a Not-So-Wonderful Life
Accountants should not be so sexy.
It all started at the office Christmas party, as many terrible hangovers do.
My palms began to sweat at the sight of The Accountant walking in my direction. His shining eyes said, I wanna spread your sheet, his masterful gait said, Damn, I’m masterful, and his tantalising smirk said, I’ve read the Kama Sutra—all the way through.
I swallowed the lump of lust in my throat and twiddled with the tablecloth of the catered buffet table. My usual party plan involved making winsome eyes at the food, but tonight I salivated over more than just the pigs in a blanket.
“Potato ball?” he asked. Sam Turner, aka The Accountant, held the fried offering palm up on a festive red and green paper plate.
I had the hots for a dude named Sam. My name is Samantha. Samantha ‘n’ Sam. It was the stuff of obnoxious wedding invitations.
What colour were his hazel eyes today? Glancing up, I slid into hormone heaven. He stood, eyes mossy green pools of sensual seductiveness, and offered me the Garden of Eden apple. Except it was a potato ball.
Cocking my head, I posed in an alluring manner that I hoped brought Marilyn Monroe to mind. I should say something. Something not stupid.
“I love balls.” Oh, damn. “And potatoes!” Did I just tell him I loved to eat balls? “I mean I love to eat food! In ball form. You know. Because it’s easy. To eat. Except when it rolls. Then it can be hard to catch.”
“Okay.” Sam’s lips turned upward in mockery on his almost handsome, totally charming face, topped in curling, floppy, please-run-your-hands-through-me brown hair.
Yes, I absolutely had told him I loved to eat balls. I decided I should smile through this faux pas. Everyone knew a bright grin made unpleasant things go away. Ask Judy Garland.
“I like food in stick or chip form myself,” he said, munching a piece of celery in stick form.
I couldn’t come up with anything to say about sticks that wasn’t dirty. “Chips are good.” Really, I impressed even myself with the brilliance of my witty banter. At any moment my clothes would be ripped off my quivering body by Sam, my same-named accounting crush.
I hated the office Christmas party.
Sam blinked and appraised me in what I chose to interpret as a captivated manner. A girl could dream. Instead he said, “So, Scott told me you entertained the employees at last year’s party.”
“Yes. I fell down the steps.” My cheeks burned like the carpet at the end of two flights of stairs. I wasn’t clumsy too often, but when I made the effort, I really won at it. “You can still see the splotch on the floor from the blood. I lost a tooth, but gained a reputation.”
“That’s gross.” He grinned. One wouldn’t call him drop-dead gorgeous or anything. At first, you might consider him kinda ordinary-looking. Then the naughty glimmer in his eye caught your breath. The smile appeared, emphasising the lickable curve of his bottom lip. Charm emanated from his very pores.
And, of course, he possessed the nuclear weapon of facial features. The dimple. Only one—on the left side of his face—deep enough to bury yourself in. One flicker and panties fell at thirty paces.
My body temperature had suddenly shot upward to somewhere near surface of the sun levels. I’d disconnected completely from the conversation and reverted to teenage-girl-like gawking.
I took a steadying breath and jumped back into the fray. “So, accounting? Is that as glamorous as it sounds?” I had, apparently, decided that deriding his profession was the way to go, flirt-wise. Plays like this were risky, but desperation had sunk in. His temp job in the finance department ended today—I would have no more chances to bend and snap at the water cooler for his benefit.
The corners of his sometimes green, sometimes brown, always dreamy eyes crinkled. “Of course. Usually I have eight models in my accounting entourage, but I gave them the night off.”
Uh-oh. He was funny, too. It just wasn’t fair. “How kind of you. You could say you’re a model boss! Ha ha!” Yes, I laughed at my own joke, which was a behaviour shared by the most sophisticated of ladies. Then I remembered I turned a horrid shade of blotchy red when I got too excited. I choked off my laughter and forced down some potato.
“I could say that, but I won’t.”
“No, you really shouldn’t.”
The dimple chose that moment to come out and play. Oh, Sam—let’s retire to the supply room and hump. It had been so long since I had humped anyone. Or anywhere. I shoved more mmmmm-yummy potato ball into my mouth and almost didn’t get it on my festive sweater, the beautiful red one I’d spent way too much money on in the hopes of getting Sam to notice me.
He noticed now. “You have a blob of—”
Then he grabbed my boob.
“Jesus, I’m sorry!” His eyes became saucers, and he jerked his hand back, leaving my skin scorched and feverish. “There’s a bunch of potato on your…sweater. Let’s, um, let’s go to the kitchen. There’s a sink.”
My stomach dropped three storeys—I’d just accidentally got to second base in public. He grabbed my arm, and we hurried past a maze of monochrome cubes draped in twinkle lights to the break room. This was the most exciting event in the office since they had switched the carpeting from taupe to tan.
Sam stood there while I applied a paper towel to my tit. Actually, he didn’t merely stand there—he stared, turned away, blinked and stared again. I couldn’t blame the guy. The girls were rather ravishing—perky from the cold water, encased in a formidable push-up bra, eager for more inappropriate fondling.
“I’m sorry about…that.” He slumped and shoved his hands in his pockets.
“It’s okay. It happens.” I smiled, brimming with reassurance.
The tension finally broke when he snickered. “It does? How often does it happen? You should avoid potato balls.”
We laughed at each other. For once I wasn’t laughing by myself.
* * *