Art Taylor took over the blog series “The First Two Pages” from B.K. Stevens after her death in 2017. This popular series features essays that analyze the openings of short stories and novels – hence the name “first two pages.”
When it came time for me to analyze the first two pages of “Riviera Red,” I had a difficult time initially. Mostly because I had so many stops and starts when writing this story that I had forgotten why I decided to open the story the way that I did. After going through my very early drafts and copious notes and research, I was able to recall “oh yeah, that’s how I thought the story would go but Janice [my eventual main character] refused to stay silent.” Thankfully, I didn’t delete all those early drafts or throw away my notes!
Tomorrow, Sunday, May 15, 2022 is launch day for Low Down Dirty Vote, Volume 3! Esteemed editor Mysti Berry has once again put together an anthology that addresses the attacks on our democracy and voting rights. This volume’s theme is “the color of my vote” and based on early reviews, it sounds like there’s a common thread among the stories: rage.
My story “Riviera Red” features a beach community torn apart by a secession campaign where the wealthy southern part of the city wants to break away from the northern. The wife of the secessionist committee president learns the hard way that remaining on the sidelines isn’t an option.