One of the joys in editing ‘Peeling Layers’ (current working title of ‘Lizzy & Michael I) is stumbling upon a passage such as this.

There was something peculiar and downright intriguing about the girl he stumbled upon as he reached the end of the Natural History aisle. Perhaps it was the way her hand travelled to flip the curtain of her dark brown hair moments before it spilled onto her shoulder, done almost inconspicuously as a gesture of convenience rather than vanity, her eyes never leaving the book she was currently reading. Or perhaps it was the sheer fact that when almost all the tenth graders were busy deceiving themselves, trying to fit in to any of the non-loser group, the girl in front of him possessed enough self-confidence to remain unperturbed, showing uniqueness and a rare sense of self-identity he could relate to.


Her head moved half-an-inch upward, though her eyes remained focussed on the current page, hungrily absorbing the last few words before she flipped the paper over and neatly dropped the glossy card with navy-tasseled bookmark, closing the book gently.


“Michael Bradford,” Elizabeth guessed confidently as she shook his hand, her lips widening into a polite smile as the soft pair of moss-green eyes underneath the blazing strands of copper and bronze curled-up eyelashes grew wide. “It’s very hard not to know who you are.”

It had been a long time since Michael remembered being embarrassed in front of a girl, but he felt a deep flush crept from above his stark white collared shirt to his cheeks. News travel like wildfires, and by now, he was convinced that even the school janitor would have figured out that the only son of the billionaire James Bradford had enrolled in Newman High.


“Elizabeth Hartley,” Michael interjected, eager to give the witty girl in front of him a taste of her own medicine. “You’re in my English class,” he added, trying hard to maintain his composure as the girl stared at him blankly.

Re-reading this brought back vivid memories of how I felt when I wrote this, dating back six or so years ago. It was one of those times where everything was aligned perfectly. I could picture the scene so clearly in my head, just like if I was watching this on a TV screen. And transferring the image to words came so naturally from my brain to the stroke of my pen to the piece of paper I first wrote this on.

I’m not sure whether this passage would make the final cut, partly because at this moment in time, I just couldn’t figure out where this part of the puzzle would fit with the current flow of the book. But truly, reading this again just gave me the warm and fuzzies; made me smile like a goon. Truly, I can claim passages such as this one as my best work to date.

What about you? Is there any passage you’ve written recently that makes you so proud of yourself? Care to share? Leave your comment or link below – would love to read your excerpts.