Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Unpublished SUSY Asylum Preface

Below is the original, unpublished preface for my second book, SUSY Asylum. After sending the finished book to my CPs, the feedback was that a new beginning would be more effective. I really liked this beginning, and I already had the song for the playlist that fit this opening of the book perfectly. But after a bit of humming and hawing, I look the advice of my readers and wrote a new beginning, which is more action oriented and what I ended up publishing. I still have a special connection to this opening, so here it is for your reading pleasure.

Original SUSY Asylum Preface

There were still blood stains on the concrete where he had taken his last steps and collapsed. Desiree was powerless to her memory of the gruesome final moments of Kafka Lorne’s life––the end of Oliver’s bogeyman. She was cold and alone on the observation deck of Lorne Tower. She could almost see the body. She could still feel her own body flying through the air, crashing into the railing––the only thing between her and a thousand foot drop onto the unsuspecting citizens of Provex City. This was one place she never imagined she’d return.

There has to be another way.

She shivered, not from the cold, but from remembering that day, sure it would be her last. It had only been a month since she last stood on this roof. She’d been trying to return to her ordinary, everyday routine ever since. But her travels to and from Provex City had opened a door she couldn’t reclose. Her realization that there were two separate worlds in shrouded coexistence brought on a barrage of questions. And it was rumored there were more. TJ helped her find Provex City the first time, and then he disappeared. It was the second time he’d neglected to say goodbye.

Desiree pried her eyes from the nauseating stains and inched toward the railing. She gripped the top bar and peered over the edge. The city was so elegant and beautifully lit. She felt so tiny and insignificant. Down below––far below––was a city functioning in perfect harmony.

There has to be another way.

The wind was drowning out her own thoughts. But the voice, the voice she’d heard every time Oliver and she returned to Provex City, led her here. She never told Oliver and she felt guilty for it now. The first time Oliver had come to Provex City, leaving her behind, she’d been devastated. Desiree didn’t know if Oliver would feel the same about her coming here.

The voice was even louder than the wind screaming in her eardrums. Desiree climbed over the railing and shakily stood on the edge of the building, clutching tightly to the top bar. She couldn’t bear to look down. Her muscles were fully flexed like she was holding up her entire bodyweight and more.

There has to be another way.

Desiree stared back at the blood, balancing just inches from where Oliver had nearly lost his life. She was on the outside looking in. Oliver still dangled in midair from Kafka’s vicious grip. It was only a memory now, but it felt like the violence was unfolding in front of her all over again. She couldn’t get the haunting images out of her mind as the scene replayed sadistically over and over. It was a mistake to come here, she thought. She believed. She knew. But the voice said––

There has to be another way.

––to jump.

TJ had made his choice and she’d made hers.

Desiree closed her eyes and let go of the railing. She felt her weightless body slide back and take flight.


  1. Very evocative and attention-grabbing, Michael.

  2. Wow, awesome - I can see why you liked it. I want to read the next page!

  3. I wish you had listened to your instincts. I really liked this! Like Yolanda, I wanted to read the next page.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting about Author Branding. Have a great mid-week!

  4. I'm sure the other beginning was just at gripping. I did find this one attention-grabbing. The repeated phrase, "There has to be another way" is gripping and it drives the surrounding graphs forward, pushing the reader on. Nice. But you know what they say, sometimes for the benefit of the story, we must kill our darlings, not just characters, but the words we love as well. With my latest rewrites on my PB, I killed the whole darn original piece, which I loved so much.

  5. Oh gosh---this is so haunting and compelling, Michael. Really. You've definitely got skills. Loved this.

    1. So stoked you'll be in LA! If you see a cheesy redhead walking around, please come say hi! I'll be there Friday and Saturday, but not Sunday. I'll try and search for your face through the crowd! :D


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