New Novel Coming: Single in Southeast Texas by Gretchen Johnson

We at Golden Antelope Press are pleased to announce that a new novel is in the works by Gretchen Johnson.  Entitled Single in Southeast Texas, the novel tells stories about the sometimes hilarious and sometimes disturbing process of finding a suitable mate in southeast Texas.  This is Gretchen's third book. Here is a short sample from the first chapter:

The year after I moved to Beaumont, Texas, Hurricane Humberto visited
in the middle of the night. Many of the city’s residents slept right
through, not impressed enough by a category one storm to be pulled out
of their beds at three a.m. But when the branches whipped against my
windows and the immense swirling whirr of the wind circled the brick
walls of my apartment building, I awoke quickly, got out of bed, stood
still for a moment with wide open eyes, and went out to the living
room to watch the storm through the patio window.

Around four, the wind and rain stopped, and an intense calm settled in
the night sky. Suddenly I longed to be out in it, to feel the
atmosphere after the storm. I put on shoes and shorts and raced
downstairs. I ran outside and splashed through the puddles on pavement
and toward the middle of the lot to inhale the stillness.

“We’re in the eye, you know?” a man’s voice yelled from across the
lot.

“The what?” I yelled back, walking toward him.

“The eye . . . the eye of the hurricane. I’ve never seen this
before. My girlfriend . . . she’s sleeping,” he said, waving his arms
wildly. “Hurricanes ain’t nothin’ to her. She’s lived down here her
whole life, but I’ve never seen this before. We’re right in the middle
of it. Can you believe it? I had to feel this, to be out in it. You
never know when you’ll get a chance like this again.”

“So it isn’t over yet?” I asked.

“Oh, no. We’re standing right in the middle of the storm, right in the
middle of a hurricane. Everyone else is sleeping, but here we are. I
can’t freakin’ believe it.”

“Yeah, it’s pretty amazing.”

“Just don’t stay out here too long. You don’t want to be out here when
the other side of this thing hits,” he said.

“I won’t,” I said, and we both stood silent for a moment, strangers
connected by the fleeting pleasure of hesitation, before he nodded his
goodbye, walked past me and back into the building behind us. For a
few minutes I just stood there, staring straight into the calm hum of
the eye of Hurricane Humberto as Beaumont slept peacefully for a few
more breaths.

 

 

Gretchen Johnson was born and raised in Minnesota but now lives in Beaumont, Texas, where she works as an Assistant Professor of English at Lamar University. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing from Texas State University. Her first book, The Joy of Deception, was published by Lamar University Press in 2012. Her second book; A Trip Through Downer, Minnesota; was published by Lamar University Press in 2014.

 

We hope to release the novel in June.  Keep an eye out for the release announcement.