Tuesday 10 February 2015

Extract from Dare to Dream

I'm really excited because the ebook of Dare to Dream is released a week today! Woo! In honour of the impending release I wanted to share an extract of the story on my blog today. 
The lead character in the story, Maggie Trafford, is very much an outsider and even invisible in the chaos of our own home. In the Trafford household, her siblings choose any moment to be disruptive, even dinner time...

Meal times were perhaps the most chaotic moments of all. The family were forced to cramp six seats around a table meant for only four, which meant that an awful lot of pushing and shoving occurred. Maggie would have been much happier eating her dinner alone upstairs, but her mother insisted on them all dining together in an ill-judged attempt at creating some family unity. The boys were always first to the table and would wolf down their food as if they hadn’t eaten in weeks. The girls talked as much as they ate, which meant that they took longer. Their mother always began by attempting polite small talk, asking each of them how their day had been, but it always somehow managed to erupt into a huge argument and dinner would end with people leaving the table angrily, followed by a succession of slamming doors. Once, Jack had punched Kyle over a dispute at school that they had not managed to settle during the day. Their mother had cried that night.
This mealtime played out like all the ones before it: this time it was Catherine and April who were having a heated exchange over their spaghetti bolognaise. The argument reached a head when Catherine called April a slut, to which April’s reply was to throw the remainder of her dinner over her sister’s head. It was a typical dinner in the Trafford household. Maggie began cleaning away the dishes whilst her mother wiped clean a sobbing Catherine. April, not wanting to be disciplined, had slunk off during the chaos to her friend’s house across the street. It was unlikely that she would return that night.

With dinner having drawn to a dramatic conclusion, the family had dispersed for the evening. Catherine was with their mother in the small living room watching the soaps, while Jack and Kyle had gone out to meet friends and play soccer, which seemed dubious considering how cold and dark it was. Maggie was pretty certain that they had gone somewhere with much less noble intentions, probably to drink cheap cider and smoke cigarettes, but she had learnt what happened when she told of their plans and so she kept quiet. Now that the house was relatively empty, she could at last relax and begin to unwind after a hectic day. Maggie chose to have a bath: it was one of her favorite things to do. She loved nothing more than to lie amongst the warm bubbles and let her mind wander. It offered her a rare chance to be alone and was more often than not the highlight of her day.

To win a signed paperback copy of Dare to Dream head over to Goodreads

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