EXCERPT: #1 Muse by T Gephart
Landing a writing gig in Hollywood was just as difficult as becoming an actor, and something Claire Becker had learned the hard way.
Sure, she didn’t have to conform to ridiculous beauty standards and give up her love for raw cookie dough, but the sting of rejection burned all the same. The only things that kept her sane were her two amazing roommates and her guilty pleasure—writing fan-fiction.
Getting lost in her own world, she’d forget that she had yet to land her dream job, and instead spent time with her dream man—Nick Larsson. Well, at least in the literary sense. Too bad he wasn’t aware or an active participant—her fictional love life, outstanding.
Tall, good-looking and sexy beyond comprehension, Nick Larsson not only had a famous last name—and four equally smoldering brothers—but was talented beyond belief. A star on the rise with a critically acclaimed series, his body and face were what fantasy scripts—and dreams—were made of. Made for some pretty steamy writing opportunities too.
And yes, it was probably “wrong” for Claire to objectify him, but it wasn’t like anyone knew about it. Just her, and her two amazing, supportive roommates.
Or at least they were amazing and supportive, and bound to be missed after Claire killed them.
In a moment of unexplained insanity, one of them —or both, each as bad as the other—sent her latest installments to the man himself.
Cue panic of epic proportions.
All Claire needed to do was sneak into his apartment and retrieve the misappropriated story before Nick, or anyone else, read it and mistook her for a creepy stalker. Although, breaking and entering probably wouldn’t convince anyone to the contrary either.
Claire was going to get the best material of her life, or end up with a restraining order. Either way, the story was getting a hell of lot more interesting.
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Those words sent a shiver down my spine every time I wrote them. Usually they were preceded by FADE OUT, but every once in a while, those last two little words were just for me.
Writing fan fic was never going to win me an Academy Award. It wasn’t going to earn me the respect of my peers or give me the recognition I craved in the industry I loved. It didn’t even pay the bills. But when I opened up that blank document—without the limitations of a script—it was like hitting a reset button.
It was my dirty little secret.
My guilty pleasure.
Just for me.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved writing screenplays. I loved the feeling of molding an idea and playing God with all the characters. Controlling their destiny with the ultimate goal of seeing it play out on a screen, but that wasn’t as easy as it sounded. The pressure sometimes made it worse. Which was why my “private” writing felt soooooo good. Zero pressure, and I still got to play God.
And if I thought there was any chance I could parlay my pages of nonsense into anything remotely resembling a book, I’d have hit the publish button months ago. Lord knows I could use the money. But a novelist, I was not.
My characters weren’t mainstream enough, and my storylines often ridiculous—who cared, not like anyone else was going to read them. But more to the point, most, if not all of them, were literary daydreams that allowed me to fantasize about the hottest guy on earth.
The man was so hot it was absurd. He was tall—six-foot-something delicious—with a body better suited to an athlete than an actor. Even his hair was hot; a rebellious mess of just-fucked-tresses that looked like a perfect mix of I-don’t-care and I’m-on-the-cover-of-GQ. And those eyes—luminous pools of warm wood brown that had the power to make you forget your first name.
I chuckled, feeling my skin heat at just the thought of him. He didn’t even seem to know how hot he was, striding through life like he hadn’t appropriated more than his share of sexiness from the rest of the male population.
I’d had the pleasure—and really, there was no better word—of meeting Nick when I was a writer’s assistant five years ago. He’d played a bartender on an episode of the series I was working on and never had “what can I get you to drink” ever sounded as good as it did coming out of his mouth.
Of course, I introduced myself, smiling slightly inappropriately while trying to think of a good way to ask him out. Suggesting a drink seemed cheesy, and I was attempting to think of something witty and clever to say when he was whisked off by the director. I was gutted by the loss of opportunity, scouring the call sheets to see if he was going to make a reappearance. And thankfully, I was given a second chance, Hot Barman bringing sexy back, two episodes later.
I’d spent the morning following one of those ridiculous YouTube makeup tutorials that used fifty different types of beauty products just to make you look fresh faced and
natural. Quick, flawless routine—my ass. Tamed my long hair into a cute messy bun that had taken me almost an hour to perfect and thrown on a dress and heels that were bound to get a raised eyebrow when I waltzed into work.
There wasn’t a chance in hell I was walking away this time without at least a number, a date—the ultimate objective. Of course, that was before I found out the studio had cancelled the series overnight. So not only was I not going to see Nick reprise his sexy—despite not being integral to the script—role, I was also out of a job. Oh, and the phone number and date were probably not going to happen either.
Fast forward to the present day where I had moved from shitty writing gig to shitty writing gig—nothing noteworthy or monumental—treading water and needing to write copy ads to make ends meet while Nick Larsson’s career had exploded.
Heading up an all-star cast in their second season in an Emmy award-winning series, he was the next hot thing. I had yet to go a full twenty-four hours where I didn’t see his astoundingly handsome face staring at me—that billboard on West Hollywood made sure of that.
So even if our paths were to cross again—either through the intersection of mutual projects or at a social function around town—I was almost positive he wouldn’t know who I was, have any recollection of meeting me, and have almost zero interest in “hanging out.”
No, he was lost to the beautiful people, gripped by the clutches of fame and success, and nestled at the bosom of the “it” crowd. Conversely, I was the weirdo with my face pressed against the glass, staring at him and writing him into fictional scenarios like I was a medieval conquering queen requesting his talent at her majesty’s pleasure. I wasn’t much into historical, but putting the man in a sexy-ass coat of armor sounded hot as hell. My fantasies weren’t genre specific; paranormal, historical—I was an equal opportunity creator.
But there weren’t any vampires, kings, or warriors in tonight’s installment. Instead I had kept it close to reality, blurring the lines enough, so it seemed believable he’d end up with a girlfriend that happened to be me.
Meet the Author: T Gephart
T Gephart is an indie author from Melbourne, Australia.
T’s approach to life has been somewhat unconventional. Rather than going to University, she jumped on a plane to Los Angeles, USA in search of adventure. While this first trip left her somewhat underwhelmed and largely depleted of funds it fueled her appetite for travel and life experience.
With a rather eclectic resume, which reads more like the fiction she writes than an actual employment history, T struggled to find her niche in the world.
While on a subsequent trip the United States in 1999, T met and married her husband. Their whirlwind courtship and interesting impromptu convenience store wedding set the tone for their life together, which is anything but ordinary. They have lived in Louisiana, Guam and Australia and have traveled extensively throughout the US. T has two beautiful young children and one four legged child, Woodley, the wonder dog.
An avid reader, T became increasingly frustrated by the lack of strong female characters in the books she was reading. She wanted to read about a woman she could identify with, someone strong, independent and confident and who didn’t lack femininity. Out of this need, she decided to pen her first book, A Twist of Fate. T set herself the challenge to write something that was interesting, compelling and yet easy enough to read that was still enjoyable. Pulling from her own past “colorful” experiences and the amazing personalities she has surrounded herself with, she had no shortage of inspiration. With a strong slant on erotic fiction, her core characters are empowered women who don’t have to sacrifice their femininity. She enjoyed the process so much that when it was over she couldn’t let it go.
T loves to travel, laugh and surround herself with colorful characters. This inevitably spills into her writing and makes for an interesting journey - she is well and truly enjoying the ride!
Based on her life experiences, T has plenty of material for her books and has a wealth of ideas to keep you all enthralled.