I’m getting the silent treatment.
I know, that's awful, isn't it? The worst of it is, I don’t even know what I did. Everything was going along swimmingly, and then bam, Richard and Jane—two of the most important people in my life right now— suddenly clammed up tighter than old Scrooge’s wallet.
Was it something I said? Probably not, since when we are together—which was almost all the time until this past week—I usually don’t talk, only listen. Now see? I’m a good listener, I care about them, I want to showcase them in their light, and what do I get for my trouble?
Nothing. Nada, zip, zero.
The hero and heroine of my second manuscript seem to have left the building. And with perfectly awful timing, thank you very much, seeing as I have to send my contest entry for the Golden Heart—only the biggest contest of them all—in by Friday. In order to do so, I have to finish the blasted book. I’m so close, it’s killing me—one flippin’ chapter!
So since they won’t talk to me, I thought I would write them an open letter. [cracking knuckles]
Dear Richard and Jane,
What happened to us? In the beginning, you chattered like finches in my ear, keeping me up at night and my fingers busy typing away all day. We laughed, we cried, we stayed up til two in the morning braiding each other’s hair. Oh, wait—scratch that last one. We did share a lot of late nights together, though.
And now . . . nothing. I don’t understand. Don’t you want a happily ever after? Aren’t you tired of the witty banter and the smoldering looks—surely you are ready to move on to the next level? Richard, did I not give you all the best lines? Did I not mold a heroine from scratch just for you? One who is smart, and sweet, and knows how to whip you into shape?
Jane, what other Regency heroine has ever been given a bakery? All those delicious treats you made—I gave you those recipes! And did I not plop the most handsome, charming (if somewhat bedeviling) hero ever right into your shop? All along, the two of you have leapt off the page, taking up 90 percent of my waking brain power. Eating breakfast I plotted, in the shower I crafted scathing come-backs, making dinner I mulled ways to grind you into the dirt so you could spring back, better and happier than ever.
What do I get in return? Complete and total silence. For shame, you two. For shame. Do you think you can just forget me? Turn your backs and disappear from view? Clamming up just before things get really good—real mature, guys. Honestly, I have half a mind to kick you to the curb and start over with sweeter, more cooperative characters. That’s right, I said it. [nodding decisively] How do you like them apples?
[Collapsing to knees] No, wait! I take it back! I didn’t mean it, I swear [dramatic crying]. I need you. Please don’t leave me. I’ll do anything. When I asked how you like the apples, Jane, I only meant wouldn’t you like them for some of you famous apple tarts. Yes, that’s it! See, I was trying to be nice. Richard, you love her tarts, don’t you? DON’T YOU??
So, in conclusion, I would really appreciate it if you would pop in and tell me the details of your happily-ever-after. I promise to put my heart and soul into crafting it into the perfect ending. And if you are really nice, I will even let you pop in to say hello in the next book.
There now, all better.
Hugs and kisses,
So, am I the only writer to have her character’s suddenly clam up? What have you done to get your characters talking again? For all you readers, have you ever been frustrated by the ending of a good book, because you think the author let things go off course?
Today’s recipe is a direct plea to Richard and Jane: Forget-Me-Not Meringue Cookies. Since Jane always changes things up a bit in her recipes, I decided to change the standard chocolate chip variety to peppermint white chocolate. This one is super duper easy—though it is beyond difficult to walk away and leave them in the oven over night. . . .
Peppermint White Chocolate Forget-Me-Not Cookies
2 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp mint extract
1 cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
(If you have a stand mixer, it makes this process a LOT easier)
Beat eggs until foamy, then slowly add the sugar in. Beat until mixture forms stiff, creamy peaks (should be several minutes). Fold in vanilla, mint, and white chocolate.
Place parchment paper over a cookie sheet, and drop mixture by tablespoons onto the sheet. Place into preheated oven, then immediately turn oven off.
Walk away from the oven, people. Let sit 8 hours or overnight in the oven . . . just don’t forget them!