As I mentioned in previous Sneak Peak Saturday posts, many of the characters’ personalities in my novel were based on friends and family. This week is no exception. The main character, Katy Kippling, has quite a full personality. She often has trouble with talking too fast, rambling, blurting out comments before filtering, sharing too much of her feelings, creating drama where there really shouldn’t be, living for the creative side of life, while loathing the mundane tasks of the ordinary day. She loves her full and wonderful life, but easily forgets she does, when things don’t go as she’s planned. For those of you have known me all of my life, you may have already figured this one out. Shocking, isn’t it? Katy, of course, is based on me. Not her looks, (sadly for me) but her personality.
Quick story behind the personality thing. My husband, Chad, and I first met at a church picnic. He had come with his friend, who was dating my cousin. After the picnic, my cousin told her boyfriend, Mark, that I was interested in Chad, who, in turn told Chad. Chad asked Mark which girl he was talking about. Mark tried to describe me, and ended up with, “You know, the girl with a whole lot of personality?”
Chad knew who Mark was talking about (much to my chagrin), and surprisingly, called me anyway. And the rest is history–13 years of marital bliss (at least that’s my take on it)!
Anyway, here is a glimpse into Katy Kippling’s whole lot of personality for this Sneak Peek Saturday:
Katy was drying the last supper plate, but her mind was far away. She was imagining that she was in the top of the Cana Island lighthouse, cleaning windows that faced the tossing waves. In her mind’s eye she could see the ships dipping in and out of the water. She drew in the cool lake air and recited:
There was “The Wreck of the Hesperus”
The maiden from which was fair.
But, there will be no wrecks along this shore,
For this light is guided with care.
My man has gone far from shore
And I am here to guide
The light by which my love will sail,
As he returns with the morning tide.
Blake could only watch as she stood there, her hair, once knotted up in a bun, but now slipping from its hairpins to curl about her face; dishwater bubbles running down the front of her dress, dripping from arms dramatically crossed over her chest.
She finished her declaration, then bowed her head as though giving in to the emotion of her saga, curls falling around her face.
This was not the little Kippling girl he thought he was retrieving from the kitchen. He was sure she was at the dinner table earlier this evening, but she’d been so busy passing the food and bringing things from the kitchen, and he’d been busy discussing business with Andrew Kippling and Dr. Seldon that other than a polite nod or smile, he hadn’t paid much attention to her. Now, he wished he had.
A board creaked beneath Blake’s foot.
Katy’s head snapped up as she whirled around. Her copper curls bobbed around her shoulders as her eyes grew wide with embarrassment.
“Excuse me, Miss Kippling,” stammered Blake, “I didn’t mean to startle you.”
“Oh, no!” began Katy. “Oh!”
She grabbed her apron to dry her hands, then stopped and looked straight into his eyes. “I’m so embarrassed. I haven’t done a thing right all evening.”
Katy rambled when she was nervous, offering excuse after excuse. “First I was late to dinner, then I didn’t even acknowledge your presence at the dinner table, and then I was too nervous to sit with you and the family, and so I decided to wash the dishes, but now I…”
Blake held up his hand, trying to suppress his laughter. He almost hated to stop her. She was much too amusing. “Whoa, whoa, now let’s take a breath and back up.”
[I’ve shortened this excerpt. After this, Blake accidentally knocks a teacup off the counter and shatters it. Katy tries to make him feel better, but shares more information than she should about the heirloom china, making him feel even worse. After rambling on and on, she finally realizes what she is doing and stops. But Blake surprises her by what he says next…]
“Your ‘rambling,’ as you call it, well, it’s…um…it’s pleasant.”
“Pleasant?” Katy wasn’t quite sure what Blake meant by that. No one had ever before complimented her on flying from one thought to another.
The heat rose in Blake’s cheeks, causing him to unbutton his collar. He chided himself for letting the word pleasant slip from his mouth. It had seemed like a safe word a moment ago. “I guess what I’m trying to say is that you have an abundance of personality, and I enjoy that.”
Katy looked deeply into the face of the man before her–not sure if he was teasing her or actually complimenting her. An abundance of personality? Katy was still unsure whether Blake liked her rambling–the rambling that always annoyed nearly everyone else. Was he just being kind? Pleasant. Her heart stuttered at the word. A shy giggle escaped her lips and she quickly clasped her hand over her mouth to try to stifle her silliness.
“I’m sorry Blake. I’m not sure that I’ve had anyone compliment me recently on the abundance of my personality.” Upon hearing the absurdity of his words spoken back to him, Blake could only swallow his pride and join in on the laughter. Katy shook her head, as Blake’s rich, hearty laughter rolled from his throat.
And it was this laughter, the laughter they shared together, that began to clear a pathway toward friendship.
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My novel is scheduled to be released in about a month! Still can’t believe it!