Mae Clair: A Zigzagging I Go!

Are you ready for some zigzagging?  I was tagged by the amazing Mackenzie Crowne in a zigzag challenge to search for the word ‘look’ in my current WIP. If you don’t know Mac, you definitely need to become acquainted. I encourage you to visit her blog, Mac’s Mad Mania where there’s always something wonderful to be found, including inspiring information on breast cancer survival.  While you’re there, be sure to give Mac’s stellar zigzag snippet a look-see. She even posted some visual eye candy to go with it, bless her romantic soul! 🙂

My task as a willing victim participant is to find the first use of “look” in my WIP and post the surrounding paragraphs. The MS I’m presently working on is a contemporary mystery/romance called ECLIPSE LAKE. In this scene my hero, Dane Carlisle, has just told his adopted son, Jesse, he wants Jesse to accompany him on a trip across the country to his home town. Not only isn’t Jesse thrilled by the idea, but he didn’t realize his father had family.


“Seriously, Dad?”

Jesse slouched in his chair. “Why can’t I stay here? Summer’s just starting and I don’t want to spend it in the mountains. I’m seventeen, not a kid.”

“I know that.” He’d argued it in his head for over a week, but couldn’t go back to Onyx alone.  Maybe it was Alicia, doing her part to keep them together from beyond the grave. Sometimes the sparse fifteen year age gap separating him from his son made Dane feel more like a tyrannical big brother than a father.

Time to drop the bombshell. “You’ve never been east, and…I grew up in Pennsylvania. I have family there.”

Jesse’s expression ran the gamut from annoyed to intrigued. “Family?” He leaned forward, shoving his dinner plate away. “You told me your parents were dead.”

“Sometimes people say things because it’s easier than explaining the truth.”

Dane gripped his water glass, swirling a few ice chips against the sides. He wondered how Jonah would react when he received the letter relaying his intention to visit. I know we had our problems growing up, but I need to see you. I’m sorry I wasn’t there when Mom died.

“Don’t talk to me like I’m a kid,” Jesse said sharply. His expression was tight, offsetting the deep green of his eyes and the stark ebony fall of his wavy hair. He looked so much like Alicia, Dane felt his throat constrict.

“You’re right.” Damn, but it was hard remembering Jesse was practically a grown man. “I didn’t think I’d ever go back to Onyx, so it was easier to avoid talking about my family. My father died when I was a kid and my mother nine years ago. She had liver cancer.”

An alcoholic who was screwed up in the head.

He’d keep that knowledge to himself, along with the crushing reminder he hadn’t been with her at the end.


Thanks again for nominating me, Mac. That was fun 😀

And now for the five authors I admire who I’d like to tag. Start zigzagging, ladies. Can’t wait to see your posts!

Jessi Gage
Laura Lee Nutt
L. J. Kentowski
Loni Flowers
Calisa Rhose


I invite you to LOOK ahead, and hop back to my blog on Black Friday 11/23 for your chance to win an Amazon or B&N Gift Card during the BLACK FRIDAY BLOG HOP. There are plenty of other prizes and goodies to be had too, so be sure to zigzag back and join in the fun!

15 thoughts on “Mae Clair: A Zigzagging I Go!

  1. See, this is why I admire your writing, Mae. Anyone who can drop a reader into the middle of a scene and make them feel immediately comfortable, as though they are already engrossed in the story, has got that illusive ‘it’ we writers all long for.

    “… made Dane feel more like a tyrannical big brother than a father.” Love it!


    • Aww, you’re so sweet, Mac! Many thanks for nominating me for this. It was a lot of fun to participate in and made me focus on my WIP! So glad you dropped by to check it out and your comments are much appreciated! 🙂


  2. What a fun thing to participate in! I’ve never seen the zigzag before. The scene you posted reminded me of the mystery build up I’ve read in VC Andrews books (the ones written by HER, not the ghost writer) as well as John Saul’s novels (and I love his work). This got me interested to find out what happens next!


    • Thank you, Cadence. I will take those comparisons as great compliments. I loved the original VC Andrews books and have read several of John Saul’s novels. This challenge was a lot of fun. I always have a good time with blog challenges and tags. Glad you had a chance to drop by for a visit!


    • Oh, wow, that early in the writing stages, huh? Well you can always tuck the challenge away for later. I see you tagged me in something else on your blog today. How fun is that, LOL! 😀


      • Yeah. I was actually 2 chapters in and decided to go in another direction so I started over, but then got edits back for SOF. I will definitely tuck this away for when I’m back on it 🙂


  3. Great scene! I can’t wait to read more of this. Mac is right — you dropped us in the middle of the scene, but it didn’t feel like it. I was immediately intrigued, wanting to know more, but because you raised interesting questions, not because I was lost. 🙂


    • Thanks so much, Donna. I’m working on this one now and enjoying it. It’s amazing how you become immersed in your “current” characters, constantly thinking about them and carrying them around in your head. Dane and Jesse, along with Jonah and Ellie, are demanding a lot of my free time, but it’s a good trade-off. I have that new story glow going on, LOL.

      Thanks for dropping by and congrats again on the beautiufl cover for I DO…OR DIE.


  4. Oh my, another new one from you, Mae! What a treat it was to find this scene here from ECLIPSE LAKE! And this little tidbit was full of mystery and such a rich amount of Dane’s story. Sounds like his son Jesse has a lot to lean about his his real roots. I’m diggin’ it already. Glad you had fun zigzagging. And of course I’m here to wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving!! Blessings to you and yours, Mae– and wishes for a great getting together with your love ones to reflect and celebrate what has been a very important year in your life.


    • Thanks, Venice. There are a lot of secrets running through ECLIPSE LAKE which makes the story fun to explore. I love writing novels that delve into family relationships.

      Sending wishes right back’atcha for a blessed Thanksgiving, my friend! 🙂


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