Time to update you guys on what’s going on in the world of Kim Smith, author. The most interesting and important news today is An Unexpected Performance is coming out in AUDIO BOOK! woot woot! I am very excited about this new opportunity to present this work to my fans and followers.
The book is being read by Suzanne Schmidt, a very talented voiceover actress who does a lot of film work too! You can find out more about her here : Suzanne Schmidt site – if you are a Sons of Anarchy fan you might want to check out her RESUME.
An Unexpected Performance – excerpt
Broken Branch High School’s theater building was an unlikely place for magic. Red brick and ivy-covered, it stood as it had since its erection in the 1800’s, a sturdy addition to a regular academic campus. The sunny sky overhead certainly didn’t foretell anything mysterious in the midst of the small Mississippi town, but mysterious and magical things were about to transpire, and they would happen quite by accident.
Mrs. McIntyre, the theater director and drama teacher, calmly taped her list of the cast selected for the upcoming winter play on the freshly washed window of the double doors leading into the auditorium. A few autumn leaves scurried across the porch.
Carly Jean Simms brushed back her blonde hair and tucked her long-sleeved tee shirt into her jeans before approaching the theater. She met Mrs. Mac as she climbed the steps to the front doors. Her teacher looked stern as she stood in front of the list with her arms crossed.
“Uh, excuse me, CJ. You’re not allowed to see this list until after fourth period, with the rest of the class. Why are you even over here?” Mrs. Mac asked.
CJ scanned behind the teacher. She didn’t want to tell her that Josh Jamison had headed this way and she had followed. “I didn’t know it was off limits, Mrs. Mac. I’ll wait. Can I go inside, though?”
“Well, no. If I let you in, I have to let everyone else in. You need to just go back over to the cafeteria until the bell rings.”
CJ shrugged. No use in arguing. She skipped down the steps and rounded the corner of the theater. Josh lounged by the side door, books under his arm. She stifled a grin and strolled to where he stood.
“Wouldn’t she let you in either?” she asked.
Josh tossed a lock of hair out of his eyes and shook his head. “No, but we can be the first in line anyway.”
CJ nodded. She tried not to stare at him. He was probably one of the hottest guys at Broken Branch High. Sandy brown hair, sexy muscles, brilliant mind, and bright blue eyes melted all the girls when he was around. She was no different. She liked him a lot and hoped he knew it. He seemed to like her company, sticking his head into her classrooms on his way by, and sitting with her at lunch sometimes. Through their lunch discussions she’d learned that he’d broken up with Natalie Franklin just before school started because she’d taken a sudden interest in Brad Newton, a sophomore.
She decided to rib him. “Heard Brad made the wrestling team. Do you ever talk to him?”
“Not much. We don’t really like the same stuff. And he doesn’t care too much for me thanks to Natalie.” Josh wrinkled his nose. “Thank God.”
“Yeah.” She wanted to add that Brad had been assigned as her lab partner but refrained. No point in adding her opinion, which so far was not good.
The bell rang, and students poured out of the heavy metal doors, going in every direction. CJ and Josh walked toward the front of the building. Josh shifted his books to his other arm and leaned on her shoulder as they strolled along.
“What part do you think you got?” he asked.
She smiled at him and shook her head. “I don’t know. She auditioned me for like an hour doing the mother’s part.”
They climbed the steps and met Mrs. McIntyre still blocking the list. Other drama kids began gathering, and everyone was talking.
Josh looked over his shoulder at the crowd. “Hey, shut up you guys!”
“You shut up, Jamison. You punk,” one of the first year drama kids taunted good-naturedly. Josh laughed and turned to look at Mrs. Mac.
“Listen up,” she said, over the noise. “Before I step away and let you see what your roles will be, I wanted all of you to know that there is nothing wrong with doing tech. Each one of you is a necessary part of this production.”
“Thanks. Now move it, teacher lady,” Josh said, with a wave. He put one hand on the glass as she opened the opposite door and entered the theater.
“Read it out loud!” someone shouted.
“Josh, hurry up,” someone else said.
He read the paper, and CJ’s heartbeat pounded in her head.
“Boatswan!” he yelled. “Kevin, older brother of Cristi. Adair! You got Liam, younger brother of Cristi. Shirley, you got … the mother.”
He looked quickly at CJ. “I got Johnny.”
CJ pushed him out of the way. There it was, at the top.
“I got Cristi,” she said, watching him as a slow smile spread across his face.
“Jamison, you’re in trouble!”
She let the strap to her canvas tote slip from her shoulder to her hand, raised it, and swung. He ducked the well-aimed shot and she sprinted after him through the doors and down the left aisle.
Laughing and out of breath, she plopped down in a seat next to him in the second row.
“Do you know what this means?”
“Yeah, I’ll probably have to give up working out with Eddy.”
“No, silly!” She slapped at his arm. “We both got lead roles! If we play our cards right, we could win Mrs. Mac’s award for excellence. My cousin won it a few years back.”
He thought about it for a moment. “Yep, same thing. I’ll have to give up working out with Eddy either way, lead role or not. Winning Mac’s award will take a lot out of me, too. Means I won’t be spending as much time in the gym.”
She looked over her shoulder at the others who had begun to wander in. “Not like you need to anyway.”
“Oh yeah I do, too. If you don’t use it, you lose it. Besides, I think I’m going into the Army after I graduate next year. I need to be really ripped.”
She turned back to him. He drummed his pencil against the desk, looking at the stage and Mrs. Mac, as she prepared to begin her talk.
“I thought you and Eddy were going to Ole Miss? That’s all he talks about during English.”
He shrugged and leaned over to rap Tommy Adair on the head. The two began a noisy play fight until Mrs. Mac settled them down.
CJ shook her head.