If you know me, you know that one of my biggest
flaws frustrations is that I need a ton of variety in everything I do to remain stimulated. If not, I create multiverse upon multiverse in my mind & kind of get stuck there. Honestly, that’s made me a headache of an employee in the past…the present…and based upon how inflation & my writing career works out…maybe the future as well.
That was supposed to be the purpose of Vella, to give me some of that variety, but I feel like it’s not effective for me as a writer.
So, I started writing Jonah’s Ghost primarily because Amazon KDP was like, “Hey, we have this new thing we’re launching called Kindle Vella. Can you write a story for it? Test it out for us?”
Me being ever the people pleaser, immediately said, “Um, sure.”
The thing is, I had no idea anyone was reading the story. Then, once you all started emailing me, I started writing and found that I didn’t really like delivering it on Vella. I can read on both digital and print platforms, and I can see myself doing serial books, but I think Vella has to make some further improvements before I can see there being a benefit for everyone.
Quick side note: Speaking for me. Not speaking for all authors.
What it did do, however, was give me an opportunity to eek out a ghost paranormal mystery romance with some historical elements. If you have Vella, you can dive into the first 15 Chapters of Jonah’s Ghost. It’s also on preorder for a Halloween release (10.31.2022).
If you don’t, here’s as much of a teaser that Amazon KDP will allow:
When making love to your husband, it’s taboo to think of someone else. Was that still the case if that person might or might not exist?
Oliver huffed on top of me, sweat-slicked skin and hips pivoting as they pushed into mine. It was standard fare—him groaning and grunting and me making complementing noises on a feedback loop. As my mind ventured to places outside of our bedroom, I panted. I gasped. One day, he would notice the fixed rhythm of my pleasure, but I doubted he would care. In some ways, he appeared to prefer I lay perfectly still while he drilled his way to the center of the earth via my sexual organs.
“I’m almost there, Rynnie.”
“Oh, Rynnie. Oh, my sweet, Rynnie.”
I barely accepted Roselyn calling me Ryn.
Oliver rolled off my body, falling to his back on my right side. I stared at the empty doorway, squinting as though I had the power to make the apparition appear.
“I will never love another,” he said, breathing hard. He coughed into his elbow. “You hear me, Rynnie? Never. I’ll never love another.”
I turned onto my side and propped my head on my fist. “I hear you loud and clear.”
“My wife is so beautiful.” He slid a finger along the curve of my chin. “I can’t wait to see what our children will look like.”
“The house.” I gestured to the massive structure, barely up to code enough for habitability. “After we finish the house. I cannot handle this size of a renovation while pregnant.”
He nodded, the hair stuck to his forehead dark with sweat. “You’re right.”
“Go take a shower, babe. You don’t want to miss your flight.”
“Impossible. They can’t go anywhere without the pilot.”
He rolled out of bed, and his naked backside disappeared inside the bathroom. Once he was out of sight, I returned my attention to the empty doorway, and there it was.
I could see much more of its form than before—a slender frame wearing what appeared to be a dark-colored corduroy knit sweater and lighter-colored trousers. The trousers looked like they could be covered in dust.
The lamp next to the bed flickered, and then he was closer.
“Is your name Jonah?” I asked.
His gaze left mine and went to the lamp, which flickered again. The electricity had returned five hours after Oliver called the power company, but the lamp had never had any issues before. Still, it wasn’t farfetched to think the sudden change had to do with the accident rather than a spiritual presence.
He reached out just as the bathroom door opened.
“Sweetheart, order more shampoo,” Oliver said, his head and the hand with the shampoo bottle visible from the doorway. “I’m out.”
Relief fluttered in my belly when I realized Jonah hadn’t left.
I wished I could feel the hand he’d outstretched toward my face. I wished I could press my fingers against it as it cradled my jaw. I wished I knew what he’d smelled like when he was alive, whether the fabric of his clothing was soft or rough and whether the hair on his face was smooth or coarse.
“Jonah…” I closed my eyes. “Who’s Odette?”
An icy blast of air tickled my cheek.
Underneath my nightgown, my body tingled, warm. None of it, however, was because of Jonah. It couldn’t be. It was simply the remnants of dissatisfaction from a husband who knew how to turn me on but had no idea what to do once I was.
I lay on my back and slid under the sheets.
One hand slipped between my thighs.
I touched and touched, each sensation bolder and stronger than the last. My knees fell to the side, and I writhed, fingers bending and flexing. The friction of my moving body against the sheets generated heat against my back. No matter how hard I tried to keep an image of Oliver, to think of Oliver, he fizzled. It was only when Oliver was completely gone from my mind that I tore and spasmed, going molten in the space from the tips of my breasts to my knees.
I opened tired eyes to find Oliver standing over me, betrayal so prominent on his face, he could have worn it as a mask last Halloween. We exchanged no words as he packed his things, dragging his pilot’s uniform onto his body and leaving without a kiss, a goodbye, or a glance my way.
It was an overreaction on his part. At least, I’d assumed so until, hours later, a text came through on my phone from my emotionally wounded husband:
Who the hell is Jonah?