Tag Archives: kate hampton

Cigarettes After Sex

I’ve never been a smoker.

The one and only time I put a cigarette between my lips was more than forty years ago. My best friend’s father smoked, so we stole one of his cigarettes and stood over the kitchen sink to try it. I’m not sure why we decided to do it there.

In case we vomited?

Possibly.

To drop the ashes down the drain?

Well … we never got that far.

After one long, enthusiastic inhale, I knew smoking was not for me.

The burning in my throat.

The coughing.

The tears.

YUCK! Smoking never tempted me again.

But though cigarettes are no longer en vogue, I do love the visual metaphor of two people smoking in bed. It’s a familiar image we’ve seen represented in film. It speaks to lovemaking, romance, and eroticism. The cigarette seduces without subjecting the viewer to its harmful effects, which brings me to this week’s music choice.

Got the music in you baby
Tell me why
Got the music in you baby
Tell me why
You’ve been locked in here forever and you just can’t say goodbye

Cigarettes After Sex is a four-person band out of Brooklyn. With their minimalist black-and-white artwork, slow-paced melodies, and tender vocals, their songs make me want to crawl into bed and drift into a hazy daydream.

Your lips
My lips
Apocalypse
Your lips
My lips
Apocalypse

I chose Cigarettes After Sex’s song, “Apocalypse” for its sweet and sentimental lyrics. In Stranger at Sunset, protagonist Kate Hampton is missing someone she first met in Jamaica. As circumstances dictate their fate, there is much left unsaid between them. This sense of absence follows her to A Fragile Truce, the book I’m writing now.

Go and sneak us through the rivers flood is rising up on your knees
Oh please
Come out and haunt me
I know you want me
Come out and haunt me

To portray Kate’s feelings, I thought of choosing oldies like “Miss You” by the Rolling Stones or “Missing You” by John Waite. I love both these songs because they express the sentiment of missing someone, and yet, the lyrics were too familiar. They had lost their emotional impact for me.

Got the music in you baby
Tell me why
Got the music in you baby
Tell me why
You’ve been locked in here forever and you just can’t say goodbye
You’ve been locked in here forever and you just can’t say goodbye

The coda of “Apocalypse” captures the hardship of separation and loss beautifully, for as difficult as saying “goodbye” can be, not being able to say goodbye is … apocalyptic.

Oh
When you’re all alone
I will reach for you
When you’re feeling low
I will be there too

Wishing you a warm, inspired week. May none of us experience anything apocalyptic, unless it’s great sex of course. ūüėČ

~eden

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Filed under Musical Mondays

Benediction

My first blog of the year begins with a prayer, but not a religious one.

Instead, it’s a song I’ve been meditating on for the past few weeks.¬†

I first heard “Benediction” at my yoga studio. It played toward the end of a 75-minute class with Farley, one of the many wonderful instructors at Union Yoga. By the time the song ended, we were ready for the final resting pose.¬†

As I lay on my back, tears streamed down my face. It was hot yoga; I was already wet and sweaty, so I didn’t care.¬†

I was as emotionally raw as the music.

As someone who is attuned to lyrics, I tried desperately to remember a short phrase from the song.

Is it war if you fight it?
Is it love when you don’t?
There is more when you let go
Of the fear that you can’t

I made a mental note to Google a line or two when I returned home to find the song title‚ÄĒthree successive words would have likely accomplished it, but I couldn’t even retain that. The melody haunted me until I finally asked Farley about it at one of his classes.¬†I relayed to him the quality of the singer’s voice and the gut-wrenching lyrics I could not remember.

Not much to go on, but we were optimistic the mystery would be solved by the end of his class … unfortunately not.

He must’ve changed the soundtrack that day.

As we burn in the fire
Slowly learning to breathe
Just keep calm in the falling
Always looking for an underneath

Just before the end of 2017,¬†Farley kindly sent me his¬†playlist as I had requested. Of the fourteen songs he provided, “Benediction” by Luke Sital-Singh was the last one I played, even though it was not the last one on the list.

Why?

Because all along, I was convinced it was a female voice I heard. I could not be more wrong.

It just goes to show the power of an intense yoga class to alter my senses!

This brings me to the new purpose for my music blogs this year. They will continue to showcase good tunes, but there will be an added objective‚ÄĒto¬†highlight the connection of the song to my upcoming books, more specifically, to its main character Kate Hampton. I will also include passages of¬†lyrics if they are meaningful to her story.

Imagine it’s a warning sign
I don’t wanna lose more time
Darling, don’t you close your eyes
Keep listening – are you listening?
I’m sorry we don’t have forever
Ooh… but come die with me

A Fragile Truce is book two in my trilogy which started with Stranger at Sunset. It’s the book I’ve been working on for some time.

Whether you’ve read Stranger at Sunset or not, you will acquire insight into Kate Hampton’s character by following my music blogs. Close friends and authors whom I trust know I’ve¬†struggled with her story for various reasons.¬†My song choices hint at her life because they¬†bring me closer to her.

Some writers of fiction will relate to this strange relationship with their main characters. Though Kate is the product of my imagination, she lives inside my head and needs nurturing. She may embody the¬†best qualities of a woman‚ÄĒsexy, intelligent, strong,¬†and compassionate, but …¬†she is also tragic, unpredictable, and¬†duplicitous.

My Music Monday posts will focus on specific aspects of Kate, and you can find these clues in the lyrics, the song’s mood, or even by watching the video. They are all inspiring me to write her story.

I’ve already chosen the soundtrack for the entire year,¬†so I hope you will join me in this writing journey.

In the meantime, close your eyes and listen to “Benediction.”

Perhaps you will shed a tear as well.

~eden

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Filed under Musical Mondays

Meet my Main Character Blog Tour – Kate Hampton

I’ve been tagged by the lovely author, Maria Savva¬†to partake in a tour involving my main character.

What are the rules? They’re simple!

I have to answer seven questions about a main character from one of my novels, then I nominate five other authors to answer the same questions.

Here’s a link to Maria’s blog where she introduced her character, Nigel Price. He’s my type of man — tortured and with secrets ūüėČ I can’t wait to read more about him in Maria’s latest book,¬†Haunted.¬†

* * * *

sas_2kindleHere are my responses about Kate Hampton.

1. Tell us a little about this main character. Is she fictional or a historic person?

Kate Hampton is a fictional character from my book, Stranger at Sunset.

2. When and where is the story set?

The story is set around the end of 2012 and the first few months of 2013, primarily in Jamaica, West Indies.

3. What should we know about her?

Kate is a psychiatrist in her mid-thirties. Her defining trait is her intelligence and her ability to assess someone almost immediately upon meeting them.

4. What is the main conflict? What messes up her life?

Her main conflict involves her own mind. There are parts of her life she would rather forget. She is aware an incident from her past has traumatized her, but it’s buried so deep in her subconscious, she is uncertain as to what it is.

5. What is her personal goal?

Her goal is to find out why travel writer, Matthew Kane has written a scathing review of her favorite holiday spot, threatening to shutter the Jamaican resort for good.

6. What are the titles of your novels, and where can we read more about them?

Stranger at Sunset is my first novel, and the first in this genre – psychological mystery/thriller. My previous books were literary erotica written as short stories, novellas, and anthologies. You can find out more about my books at edenbayleebooks.

7. When can we expect your next book to be published?

The next book will also feature Kate Hampton, and it’s called A Fragile Truce. I aim for a trilogy with her as the main character. The new book should release by next year if not sooner. You can read an excerpt of it at the end of Stranger at Sunset.¬†

* * * *

Now I’ll nominate five other authors. All of them are terrific writers, so please visit them and give their books a read.

~ Science fiction author, Mars Dorian, just released his first novel, Blogbuster.

~ Fiction author Lisette Brodey writes in multiple genres, including the acclaimed drama Crooked Moon.

~ Author Christoph Fischer, writer of historical fiction novels, and A Time to Let Go, a drama about Alzheimers.

~ Billy Ray Chitwood, the author of more than a dozen books, with his latest Bailey Crane novel, A Common Evil.

~ Author Victoria Dougherty, whose book The Bone Church is receiving excellent reviews.

 * * *

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Filed under Craft of Writing, Eden's Guest Blogs & Interviews