Schrodinger’s Telephone — Preview

My new novella, Schrodinger’s Telephone is now available on Amazon.  I’m offering to give away 20 copies. What I’m looking for in return are honest reviews on Amazon (copies to Goodreads if you’re a member would be nice as well, as would reviews on blogs and other places).  Here’s where it gets interesting. These 20 freebies will only be available through Amazon’s Kindle store, so if you are interested, and you have an Amazon or Amazon UK account, please do the following: (1) Place Schrodinger’s Telephone on your Amazon wishlist. If you don’t have a wishlist, go to “edit my profile” to create one (2) Send me an email letting me know you have it on your wishlist.

Amazon will email you a gift certificate for the novella and instructions.

If you don’t want the freebie and you don’t want to buy it because you are THAT BROKE, you could always just “like it” on Amazon.  But if you like it, why don’t you buy it?

You also have my permission to like the facebook page.

What’s it all about? Kind of tough to explain without at least one major spoiler. It was my attempt at uplifting if you consider losing everything and spending years of your life labelled as crazy, uplifting, and then there’s that part where … Oy vey.

(Update: Went live Friday evening, but discovered a Kindle formatting issue. Finally, thanks to THIS WOMAN’S HELP problem is SOLVED. The mo better edition is now LIVE!)

Here are the first 900 or so words.

Schrodinger’s Telephone

Si tú no vives,
si tú, querida, amor mío, si tú
te has muerto,
todas las hojas caerán en mi pecho,
lloverá sobre mi alma noche y día,
la nieve quemará mi corazón,
andaré con frío y fuego
y muerte y nieve,
mis pies querrán marchar hacia donde tú duermes

– Pablo Neruda, La Muerta

1990-1991 – Lizzie

While others thought living in the past was harming Lizzie, she knew it was the only thing keeping her sane, and would often revisit that early fall day when the course of her life changed.

Technically, it was still late summer, school having started only the week before. She spent most of her vacation preparing for the term. Her lesson plans were detailed and specific down to the handouts. Any other year, she might have woken up without the ring of the alarm clock at five forty-five, but in those days, she found herself falling into bed early and waking with reluctance.

She pushed down the snooze button and shut her eyes, trying unsuccessfully to recall a dream. She had to punch in at seven fifty, and while work was only a ten-minute walk away, she needed a lot of time in the mornings. She could hear Jeff already in the kitchen, last night’s dishes clanging as he returned them to the shelves. He didn’t have to be at work till nine, could catch the train and be there in half an hour, but was always the first one up, out the door for a quick jog with Asta. She worried about his being out so early with only a small terrier for protection. They lived in the upper part of the upper west side, just south of 96th street, known then as “the great divide.”

Jeff, though protective of her, never thought much about the crime. He’d gone to Columbia and had lived in a dorm even further uptown. That wasn’t something Lizzie could imagine herself doing. There’d been that young stockbroker raped and left for dead in the park the year before, and every day there were stories of muggings and worse.

Without opening her eyes, she preemptively reached out and shut off the alarm. She thought she smelled coffee. Maybe it was something wafting in through the window. Her husband had given up the evil brew in sympathy. While she told him it wasn’t necessary, she was grateful.

Jeff came in to the room carrying a small tray, which he placed on the night table. He sat down on the bed.

“Morning, princess.”

She opened her eyes and sat up. Then she sprang from the bed and ran into the bathroom. Just a belch. It was the end of the first trimester, and it had been getting better. She brushed her teeth. Years later she would remember everything so clearly, even that she had been startled by what she thought was a cockroach scurrying on the floor, but it turned out to be some loose thread, maybe from a frayed sock.

She came back to the bedroom and sat down next to her husband on the side of the bed. “Uuurhh,” she grunted.


“No, not really. It’s just…” She trailed off and grabbed one of the bland cookies he’d brought in. Then she took a swig of the hot concoction in the mug, “I’m so damn tired of Postum.”

He smiled and shook his head slightly. She would recall thinking just then, not of the future, which she often did during her pregnancy, but about the first time they met. Some party where the music was so loud they couldn’t hear each other, but looking into his sweet eyes, she felt he already knew her in a way no one else ever had or would. She kissed him. He seemed surprised, but pleased, and kissed her back. There was more. This hadn’t been part of the morning routine of late. He was already being careful with her. Gentle. After, they showered together, though he never liked the water as hot as she did.

He offered to make eggs. Even before the pregnancy, he was the one who made breakfast, while dinner was her domain. Between them they referred to this division of labor as “the deal.”

“Or would you rather have French toast?”

“French toast! Yeah. But you know what I really, really want…”

He made a suggestion, which made her giggle.

“Well, besides that… I’d love one tiny cup of….”

They discussed this for a minute, and then decided to “live dangerously.” The espresso machine, a wedding gift from his brother, was on the counter, and there were beans in the freezer. He made himself a double shot, and gave her a half-shot of cappuccino, really a coffee-flavored cup of hot milk.

“I’m being so bad,” she said.

“I’ll pick up some decaf,” he offered, “The doctor said a little caffeine wouldn’t be the worst thing.”

“But Sara says…”

“You don’t have to do everything your big sister tells you to, even if she is a nurse.”

“And a mother…”

He didn’t wind up making the French toast although they did eat the bread he would have used, raisin challah, which lately she was eating a lot of, insisting it was the only thing that would settle her very noisy tummy.

Time was getting away from them. It was seven thirty-six. She had to go.

He promised he would take Asta out for another quick pee before he left. She said she’d be home early and take him around three.

They did kiss before she walked out the door. The only thing that wasn’t clear in her memory was whether or not either or both of them had said, “I love you.” It would nag at her she couldn’t remember that detail.