Monday, October 17, 2011
Liz's Lair: A Day in the Life of Jordan McAllister
As most of you know, LIVER LET DIE came out two weeks ago, and I am currently on an incredible journey with a blog tour and signings. I've had to write 25 different blogs for this month, and I'm all tapped out. So, I decided to reprint this one that I wrote for my friend Dru Ann's blog last week. It's written by the main character in LIVER LET DIE, Jordan McAllister. Here's the blurb.
Jordan McAllister dreams of being a sports columnist, not a food critic. She doesn’t know the first thing about food, but filling in for the culinary reporter at the Ranchero Globe is better than writing personal ads. She's convinced the weekly Kitchen Kupboard report will bring her closer to the coveted sports column—as long as she doesn't let on that she can't cook herself out of a box of macaroni and cheese.
Her first assignment is reviewing the new steakhouse in town. But she never should've ordered that foie gras—or hidden it in her purse. Back home she finds that she’s ruined her friend’s beautiful handbag, but that's nothing compared to finding her waiter from the steakhouse murdered outside her door—with her name and number in his pocket. Now Jordan is the prime suspect, as well as the main course on the murder menu…
Take it away, Jordan.
Did you ever look back on your life and want to just slap yourself? Yeah, that pretty much describes how I felt explaining to my editor at the Ranchero Globe why I ended up in a small town fifty miles north of Dallas writing personals when I’d graduated several years before at the top of my class with a journalism degree.
Three words—a cheating fiancé. I didn't need the editor to remind me how stupid I'd been to put my own dreams of becoming a big-time sports reporter on hold while I followed the jerk all over Texas and watched his dream become reality.
So, here I am in Ranchero, Texas, writing personals and helping desperate women hook up after reading some redneck’s lies about himself. Loves to dance? Right. Probably doesn't have a job, either and still lives with his mother—thinking Norman Bates here. Needless to say, my expectations of ever being in another relationship were in the toilet.
I was beginning to think I would have to crawl back to Amarillo and listen to my parents and four brothers tell me they told me so—until my editor called me into his office. Seems the culinary reporter had been in a ski accident and would be out for six weeks rehabbing both a broken hip and arm. Needless to say, I jumped on it, despite the fact I couldn't cook myself out of macaroni and cheese box.
Did I mention my four older brothers? They’d needed me to even up the sides every day after school when they played flag football with my dad in the front yard. Granted, I can throw a razor-sharp touchdown pass from fifty yards out, but I have yet to cook a grilled cheese sandwich without burning it. Consequently, I my diet consists of fried bologna sandwiches, fast food, and Hostess Ho Hos, which I equate to Prozac.
How hard would it be to write about food as long as I didn't have to actually cook it, I thought. No sooner had I signed on the dotted line—why, I'll never know since the man informed me there would be no increase in my already measly salary, and I still had to write the personals—that I began having serious second thoughts.
Then the editor informs me my job also includes an occasional restaurant critique, and in fact, my first one would be that night at a newly reopened steakhouse on the outskirts of town. Now might be a good time to tell you I hate steak and all fancy food. Since I had the sinking feeling I wouldn't see nachos and mozzarella sticks on the menu, I prayed at least there would be chicken.
Wearing hand-made jewelry and carrying a borrowed purse from Rosie Larue, my hippie neighbor who sold the stuff on eBay, I knew immediately after scanning the menu that I was in trouble.
"What on here isn’t red meat?" I asked the hunky waiter, explaining I was watching my cholesterol.
"Foie gras," he said. "I've never tasted it myself, but that guy over there orders every week. At this price, it has to be good."
I figured since I wasn't getting a boost in my salary, the newspaper could cough up the extra bucks for my meal. But as soon as the waiter set the plate in front of me, I knew I had made a big mistake. There was no way I could eat the foie gras, especially after hearing it was really fatty duck liver. When I thought no one was looking, I shoved the entrée into Rosie's purse, thinking I had just pulled off the con of the century.
Or did I?
There you have it. Jordan will hang around all day long to answer any questions you might have for her. One lucky commenter will win a free download of MORTAL DECEPTION which WILL be live in a few days.