The Women on Thespian Lane (Chapter 1)

Thespian Lane Logo (A collage of google images)
Thespian Lane Logo (A collage of google images)

UPDATE

As of March 2nd, 2011 I am un-publishing subsequent chapters of Thespian Lane. I will be happy to gradually re-publish on demand.

About the Story

A little serial featuring the lives of 6 women living on the same street of a gated community. Each woman faces great hardships in the past and in the present. Every character deals with their problems differently.

A melodramatic tale of love and hate, trust and infidelity, past, present and future... Tragedy and comedy... The women on Thespian Lane...


Google Images
Google Images

Chapter 1 - Meet Graciela Stewart

There was chaos in the Bargain Mart. The atmosphere in the store was thick with the stench of profligacy. The shoppers had no consideration for anyone else except themselves. All morality seemed to have been thrown out the window. People were pushing old ladies aside just to get ahead in line to buy their children mind-rotting videogames.

Two fair-haired children fought over the last Real Ramona doll. A small boy clad in basketball shorts and a T-shirt featuring the beloved Elmo, drove a mini jeep into one of the Christmas trees on display. Ornaments fell from the tree, burying the small child. Two women argued over a bulk package of assorted chocolates. Another woman who was eavesdropping nearby snatched the large box and sprinted away. Baffled, the two arguing woman stared at each other for a few seconds then they both took off after the thief.

In the midst of the pandemonium, a woman, Graciela Stewart, stood near a bulletin board, reading a flyer that advertised private piano lessons. Graciela’s plump lips were pursed in concentration as she read the flyer. She was not concerned with the clamor surrounding her. There was a certain calm disposition about her but it was mainly because her mind was constantly elsewhere. She was always thinking about something unrelated to her current situation. In this circumstance, her disposition was beneficial.

As Graciela’s dark brown eyes continued to scan the flyer, someone rammed into her, momentarily pinning her against the bulletin board. Instantly, her calmness left. Her mocha-colored skin reddened in anger. She turned just in time to see a tall, lanky man running farther into the store. She wasn’t going to let him get away with shoving her.

“Hey!” Graciela exclaimed. The man stopped midstride and turned to look back at Graciela. His green eyes glowed with ravenous urgency. “You know you just pushed me, right?”

“No, I didn’t,” the man protested.

“What!?” Graciela exclaimed. “You just—” She pointed to the bulletin board that she had been pushed against. “What is wrong with you?” The lanky man ignored her and continued running. Graciela scoffed. “The nerve of some people,” she muttered under her breath. “Let’s get out of here,” she said, looking to her left. There was no one there. Graciela panicked. She spun in a complete circle and then spotted a slender adolescent rummaging through a disorganized clearance rack of clothes. The girl’s straight black hair was pulled into a pony tail that reached just below her shoulders.

“Rosemary!” Graciela yelled. She had to yell louder over the commotion. “Rosemary!”

The adolescent, Rosemary, turned to face her mother. Graciela waved her over. Rosemary looked to her right and yelled something inaudible then she reluctantly began approaching her mother. The adolescent had a complexion slightly lighter than Graciela’s and her golden-brown eyes tended to darken or lighten in indefinite times. “Are we finally leaving?” she impatiently question.

“Yeah,” said Graciela. “There’s too much craziness going on here.”

“There sure is,” said Rosemary. “What’s wrong with—?” She was interrupted by a hard, moving object striking her hip. “Ouch!” she shrieked. She rubbed her hip and looked at the green shopping cart that caused her pain. She then stared angrily at the small child pushing the cart.

The child had caramel-coloured skin and big grey eyes. Her curly, sandy-brown hair was in two short ponytails. A girl with light brown skin and thick, black curly hair came running towards the younger girl. “Sorry,” said the smallest child. “It was going by itself.”

“Mom!” the oldest loudly complained.

“Kayla, Emma, apologize to your sister.”

“Sorry,” both children chorused.

Rosemary stuck her tongue out at her sisters and the middle child returned the favour. “Emma,” she said, as she tried confiscating the cart from her younger sister. “Let me do it.”

“No,” Emma protested. “I can do it.”

“You’re too little,” Kayla argued.

“Am not!” The middle child struggled with Emma. “Stop it!” Emma commanded, her single dimple puncturing her right cheek.

“Both of you stop it,” said Graciela, her dimple almost as deep as her youngest daughter’s. “Kayla, leave Emma alone. Emma, you don’t need to push the cart. We’re going home”

“Aww,” Kayla and Emma whined.

Graciela sighed as she entered the number on the piano lessons flyer into her phone. “Why do we have to go?” Kayla asked.

“Because it’s too hectic in here.”

“Come on,” she said, grabbing Emma’s hand.

They all left the anarchic store and walked across the parking lot to a black BMW SUV. Graciela pressed a button on her car remote and watched as all the door opened. Her two younger children ran to the vehicle and excitedly hopped in. Rosemary dragged her feet to the van and climbed into the front seat. Graciela’s mind was wandering again. As she got into the car and started the engine, the memory that often popped into her mind was triggered again.

It was two years before. Rosemary was eleven years old, Kayla was six and Emma was three. Graciela’s husband, Austin Stewart, entered the house at 8:40pm, ten minutes after Graciela had just put her children to bed. Austin was a German-American man with fair skin and light brown eyes. He entered the house clad in his black suit. His teal tie was undone and draped over his shoulders. He looked absolutely worn but he approached his wife with a smile on his face and kissed her softly on the cheek. Graciela didn’t say a word. She just looked at him disappointedly. “Gracie, I know I’m late. I got held up on the job,” Austin told her. “Honestly.”

Graciela still looked as though she didn’t believe him but she said okay regardless. As she walked into the kitchen, Austin began walking towards Emma and Kayla’s room. As he placed his hand on the door knob, he heard Graciela said, “Austin, don’t you dare.”

Austin looked around but he didn’t see his wife. He wondered how she knew what he was about to do. Graciela came into view with her hands on her hips.

“Are they sleeping?” he asked.

“I don’t know,” Graciela responded.

“Honey, I haven’t seen them all day,” Austin wined.

Graciela tried not to fall for Austin’s sad face but she always did. When he pouted his lips and opened his eyes widely, he looked as cute as their daughters. Graciela gave in but warned Austin not to wake the girls if they were asleep.

Austin nodded and opened the nursery door. Graciela began walking away and heard him playfully exclaim, “Kayla! Emma! Daddy’s home.” Then there was an outburst of laughter and excitement. Graciela was disappointed. She had a long, hard day and had been looking forward to the quietude. She returned to the doorway of the girls’ bedroom and called Austin’s name. By Graciela’s expression, Austin knew she was ready to yell at him. He assured her that they would settle down once he left the room.

As he tucked the children back into the room and left he looked at Graciela and said, “See? They’re fine.” He closed the bedroom door and as he began walking away, the sound of Emma’s crying emitted from the bedroom.

“Daddy!” Kayla’s little voice called.

Graciela glared at him. Austin looked at her apologetically and promised to take care of it. “Leave them,” said Graciela. “They’ll fall asleep soon enough.”

“Sorry,” Austin apologized again. He suddenly looked exhausted. Seeing his disposition change, Graciela inquired whether he was alright. Austin nodded and walked into the living room. He plopped down onto the couch and closed his eyes. Graciela sat beside him and asked, “Are you sure you’re feeling okay?”

“Honestly, I’m not feeling all the well,” Austin responded.

Graciela leaned his head against Austin’s strong shoulder. “What’s wrong?” she asked.

“I don’t know,” Austin responded.

All of a sudden, loud gospel music rang out. Startled, Graciela jumped. “Mom,” she heard a voice whine. The gospel music continued. Where was it coming from? Graciela looked around. She was parked in the long driveway of a large, mansion-like house. She looked to her right. Rosemary was no longer in the passengers’ seat. “Mommy,” the voice whined again. Graciela looked back as Emma tugged on her sleeve. “Aren’t you getting out of the car?” she asked.

Graciela had been so preoccupied with her memory that she drove home on autopilot and had not even realized it. The last thing she fully recalled was starting the car engine at the Bargain Mart. Lately, she had been experiencing odd lapses in her short-term memory. She had been doing things that she couldn’t recall, most of the time on autopilot. Graciela held her head. One minute she was in the parking lot of a shopping center twenty minutes from her house and the next minute she was back on Thespian Lane. If that wasn’t something to worry about, what was?

UPDATE

As of March 2nd, 2011 I am un-publishing subsequent chapters of Thespian Lane. I will be happy to gradually re-publish on demand.

Are you interested in reading more?

See results without voting

FEEDBACK WANTED

Please FEEL FREE TO COMMENT and let me know what you think. I do enjoy your comments. Thank you for reading.

More by this Author


Comments 63 comments

thevoice profile image

thevoice 6 years ago from carthage ill

beautiful hub read thanks


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Aww, thank you, Voice. :) I appreciate the encouragement.


Marvalous 6 years ago

Good reading, thanks!


loveofnight profile image

loveofnight 6 years ago from Baltimore, Maryland

you are a page turner, this story is quite good. i'll have to come back for part 2.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you so much! Yes, I would appreciate you coming back for part 2.


ashante' 6 years ago

This is interesting! great job!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, ashante`. I'm happy you found it interesting!


Flower 6 years ago

Love it so far! You are an amazing writer. I was caught up in the flashback she was having until you suddenly brought me back to reality


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you, Flower!


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 6 years ago from Maui and Arizona

Good writing. I don't usually read fiction, but I read this and it's good. (It's not that I have anything against fiction -- I write it occasionally -- but I just don't seem to have enough hours in my days lately.) Welcome. You've been a busy lady. Great work.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Well, since you don't usually read fiction I should be honoured that you took the time to read this Hub. :) Thanks for stopping by and commenting too!


Dobson profile image

Dobson 6 years ago from Virginia

Hey Kimberly - I relaized I had not commented on everything and vow to right that wrong. So sorry to be so long in leaving feed back. I like the direction of your first.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Ha! Well, thanks for coming back. I appreciate it.


Joy 6 years ago

Starting from the top makes the story quite interesting Im execite to read chapt 2. I got caught-up in the memory as well so I became startled by the loud music too


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, Joy. I'm sorry the loud music startled you (HA HA).


SilverGenes 6 years ago

You pulled me right in from the beginning and even jolted me back with the car stopping... your writing is excellent! I'll be reading more of Thesbian Lane :-)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

It's so nice to hear good things said about my writing. I appreciate it. Thank you.


Duchess OBlunt 6 years ago

Well, now I need to know what was wrong with Austin, AND Graciela. Short term memory loss? On to the second one now.

Oh, and congratulations on your HubNugget Nomination


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Haha, thanks, Duchess O'Blunt. I hope you enjoy the second one.


starqueen13 profile image

starqueen13 6 years ago from Houston, Tx

This is awesome! lol im scared she is going to have a memory lapse and run into something without realizing it


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Haha, sound like a plan... just kidding. Thanks for commenting, starqueen13. I'm glad you came by.


ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

The Women On Thespian Lane has truly caught the attention of the Hubnuggets team. Congratulations for being a Hubnugget Nominee! The link is right here: http://hubpages.com/hubnuggets10/hub/The-Maltese-F... Vote, and vote and promote.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

You're great, you know that, ripplemaker? Thanks again!


shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain

Onto the next thrilling installment soon :)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Yay! Thanks, shazwellyn!


Money Glitch profile image

Money Glitch 6 years ago from Texas

Great Job! Congrats on being selected as one of the HubNuggets Wannabe nominees. Good luck to ya! :)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, Money Glitch!


ericvonjed 6 years ago

Best of luck with the nugget!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, Eric. Same to you!


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 6 years ago from North Carolina

YOu have me at the edge wondering what is in store in part 2. Great job. Love the character descriptions.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Aww, thanks Denise. And thanks for following me. I hope you like part 2 as well.


Mary Berger profile image

Mary Berger 6 years ago from Arizona

Why did I start reading at 2am?! I absolutely HAVE to go to bed and I'm dying to know what comes next! Expect a comment on Chapter 2 tomorrow....I'm hooked!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Haha, Mary, you just made my day. I'll look forward to your comment on chapter 2. Thanks for coming by.


lxxy profile image

lxxy 6 years ago from Beneath, Between, Beyond

I am going to have to dig deeper into this. I love your style, and you do a wonderful job of sneaking in other articles you've written. ;) Glad I happened upon you!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hi, Ixxy. Thank your for the compliments. I appreciate it. I'm going to have to check out your Hubs as soon as I get a chance. Thanks for commenting!


englightenedsoul profile image

englightenedsoul 6 years ago

I am really embarassed that being your fan/follower how come I missed this series. You really are a talented and amazing writer. I really liked the first part and I will keep coming back to read the other parts.

Thanks for the share!!Rated up!!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Don't be embarrassed, Enlightened Soul. Thank your for the comment and compliment. I would love for you to come back to read the other parts. Thank you!


silverfoxygirl108 profile image

silverfoxygirl108 6 years ago

Excellent beginning! :D I thoroughly enjoyed it!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hi silver! I'm glad you read this. Yay! Good to know that you enjoyed it.


ACSutliff profile image

ACSutliff 6 years ago

Kaltopsyd,

Your descriptions of the girls just floored me. They sound so adorable, I wanted to hug them. I'm also worried about Austin, since he's so tired in the flash back, and I'm worried about Graciela because she skips time. That's happened to me before, and it's NOT fun! I've never driven a car full of my small little ones while skipping out though, so this really concerns me!

~AC


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you so much, AC. I'm glad you were able to "see" how cute I imagine the girls to be. I hope you are able to read more. I appreciate your insightful comment!


parrster profile image

parrster 6 years ago from Oz

Gee, wish I could drive my car on autopilot like that. Seriously this was well written and a good read. I think your style is unique and snappy, one I particularly enjoy.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you very much, parrster. I'm glad you enjoyed reading this! Thanks!


LunesisMidnight profile image

LunesisMidnight 6 years ago from Texas

OMGS!!! i usuaslly hate this kinda stuff but this is amazing


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

LOL! Thanks LM. I'm glad you liked it.


KKalmes profile image

KKalmes 6 years ago from Chicago, Illinois

Hello KAP, very nice read... when and if you want to discuss a few grammatical errors, and a couple of confusing transitions, I'd love to send an email and discuss. Please send any typo, grammar errors when reading my stuff, no matter how many times I read for these things I never catch them all.

I will be back to visit Thespian Lane... thumbs up... keep writing!

Sending fan mail...


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hello, KK. Thanks for stopping by. Corrections are always welcomed. Free free to send me an email. I don't mind. :-)


Website Examiner 6 years ago

Hello Kaltopsyd. Have you considered getting this story formally reviewed or critiqued as it is nearing completion? Or do you find that the informal feedback you have been receiving thus far suffices?


Website Examiner 6 years ago

PS: I used to send manuscripts to literary consultants for feedback, at a cost of approximately $1000 per reading. This can be a continuous process of critique-revision-critique. It is a worthwhile investment for any serious aspiring writer.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hello WE,

I HAVE considered it. I do love the informal feed back but I have considered a critique. Right now I am fine with the informal feedback and someday I will like a serious critique. Unfortunately at the moment, my money is being utilized elsewhere - not for my writings. Thanks for stopping by.


Website Examiner 6 years ago

I am offering to critique this story one chapter at a time, basically one each day. I will make every effort to be brief, concise and objective. The critiques will be left on the hubs themselves, I'd imagine. If you do not want this, feel free to delete my comment.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

W.E. I don't mind if you critique my story. If you would like to, feel free to. I won't delete your comment(s).


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

It's perfectly fine with me. If you would like to take on such a large task truly out of the kindness of your heart, I appreciate it. If not, that is quite alright. I have no problem with either choice.


Website Examiner 6 years ago

Consider yourself in-review.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Yes, sir.


Website Examiner 6 years ago

My focus initially will be on things that can readily be improved upon or corrected. An overall assessment of the quality of your project will be given in a comment to the final chapter.

Strong points:

A. Nice beginning, middle, and ending.

B. Original and exciting.

C. Generally well-written as far as composition. Sentences tend to be short, which is fine. Some original vocabulary.

Weak points:

1. Repetitive language, over-use of same words/names within a single sentence or paragraph (for example: “small boy…” “…the small child.”);

2. Rather many punctuation errors (for example: “…few seconds then they both…”);

3. Store, street and surroundings are not well-described and therefore difficult to visualize;

4. Environmental description is inadequate – e.g. summer or winter? A town or a major city? (The intro does not really count as a part of the story, as it would probably not be permitted as a foreword in a printed novel);

5. Characters are not properly introduced. It is good to know how they are dressed and what their hair color is, but there is hardly a single word about their personality or temperament. Without some support, essentially all we have is a bunch of names. I could neither visualize their faces nor imagine how their voices sound like. This ought to be done right, and it ought to be done early on;

6. Some corrections are necessary, such as: “whined” not “wined”; “preoccupied with her memories” not “…preoccupied with her memory…” Memory is the faculty for memories, which is indeed the way it is being used only a few lines down (“…her short-term memory.”);

7. Transitions: Flashback is awkwardly introduced – written in past tense, when before present tense would have been a more conventional and better solution. Once the flashback is over, a double paragraph is all there is to bring us back to the present. The first transition is clear but inelegant, the second is confusing but elegant.

Quality assessment:

I. Plot and concept: Very good

II. Writing style, fundamental: Good

III. Writing style, smoothness: Below average

IV. Characterization: Fair (promising but incomplete)

V. Environment: Fair (promising but incomplete)

Spelling, grammar, punctuation: Medium

To be continued…


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Wow, my first real. I didn't know what to expect but okay, that wasn't TOO horrific. Thank you. I didn't think about the past tense vs present tense transition for the flashback. I will keep that in mind next time. Warning: you may want to skip over spelling errors when if you plan to continue (because my proof-reading skills are horribly lacking).


Website Examiner 6 years ago

You are welcome. Don't worry, spelling errors don't bother me one bit. About transitions, I can now see that you used italics to emphasize the flashback. Still, you could go like this...

First transition: "Two years earlier, Rosemary had been eleven years old, Kayla was six..." (Before present tense). Final sentence in flashback: "I don't know, Austin had responded." (Also before present tense, as we exit the flashback).

Second transition: "These memories were interrupted when loud gospel music rang out all of the sudden..." (Back to the past tense).


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you, W.E.


ACSutliff profile image

ACSutliff 6 years ago

For the record, I still find this opening chapter to be one of your most well written installments for this serial. If you would like a more narrowly-focused critique, let me know! I have a few helpful suggestions.... :)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Haha, you're the best, AC! You know that? You're just... wonderful. I don't know what else to say. Except, your schedule is too packed to critique me. We've got other work to do, pal! :D Again, you're da bomb! (Who says that anymore?). hehe.


ACSutliff profile image

ACSutliff 6 years ago

I says that (Da BOMB!)

K Alto, It would be my pleasure to help you out with this, even though we do have so much work to do. Ah phooey! Let's agree to critique each other some time down the line.

(I enjoys grammatically incorrect sentences every now and then, if you couldn't tell. I think maybe I am sleep deprived?)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Yes, sleep deprived sounds like a valid theory. That's when the silliness kicks in. I have it too! I better get to bed. Yes, we should critique each other sometime. I know you enjoys grammatically incorrect sentences every now and then. Hahaha.

Well, I'm off to bed.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working