Since Heart of Clay was my first writing endeavor, I feel a bit more emotionally attached to it than I do my other two books. Maybe because I identify so well with Callan, one of the two main characters in the story.
Callan has a lot of heartache and heartbreak she needs to work through. She isn’t good about sharing her problems or voicing her feelings. She is one of those people who tends to bottle up her emotions. Her friends and family see Callan as someone who is strong, determined, talented and in control. She sees herself as weak, unlovable, a failure.
She struggles to maintain what she sees as her facade and finally reaches the point where she just can’t do it anymore. That is the point where she opens her heart completely to her husband, Clay.
Although he is a bit of a prankster and tends to not take life too seriously, he realizes if his relationship with Callan is going to have a future, they are both going to have to put a lot of effort into mending fences and moving forward.
How they progress from the lowest point in their marriage to a happily ever after is the meat of the story.
I like to think of Callan and Clay as a couple who might live next door. They are just ordinary people with an extraordinary love. When you read their story, it might make you smile, laugh, sniffle or sigh. Despite some heavy issues that they work through, Clay is a jokester, so there had to be humor sprinkled throughout the story.
Here is an excerpt from the first chapter:
Callan Matthews struggled to fall asleep, tormented by the sounds her husband, Clay, made as he obliterated the peaceful quiet of the night with his nocturnal serenade.
Somewhere between a snore and a whistle, she wondered if he was intentionally making such an annoying racket. If so, he had perfected it to an art. Could anyone really sleep through that noise, even if they were the one making it? She knew a childhood accident left Clay with a severely impaired ability to breathe through his nose and absolutely no sense of smell, but right now she didn’t really care.
Letting out a long sigh, she turned to look at Clay. A tiny sliver of moonbeam snuck through the parted drapes to caress the hollow of his cheek, giving Callan the ability to see that Clay looked peaceful. How could he do that? How dare he do that? Turn off all the turmoil of daily life and sleep peacefully.
Rising on one elbow, she debated if it would be better to put a pillow over his face and end her suffering or put it over her own and end the suffering of them both. But knowing she was incapable of committing murder or suicide, she instead punched the pillow, rolled over and tried to block out the noise. To relax. To give in to the fatigue that had plagued her for months.