Category: Interviews

“You’re The One” Paul Simon

I’ve been working diligently on the sequel to “Final Shot” with the working title of “THE ONE.” I’m about 2/3 through, and would love feedback about the sample I posted below. Writing is a wonderful exercise, vocation, avocation, and catharsis. That’s one of the reasons I run Psych ‘n’ Roll Radio.  It’s to give myself and you, my dear participants, a chance to  express  feelings, vision, ideas and beliefs with the written word. So write to me and let me know what you think about the opening to “THE ONE.” And if you have music about writing (or about Broadway– in a moment you’ll know what I mean) send it our way.


BY Ira Kalina

(copyright 2014)


August 2012


They killed it tonight.

The audience stood. Clapping, whistling, stomping, and shouts of “bravo,” filled the St. James Theater. The curtain rose to “Wouldn’t it Be Loverly?” and chorus members rushed to the front of the stage. Supporting actors followed, and after their bows the ensemble created an opening in their line. Jeremy Wilson—a Henry Higgins chameleon, professorial in three-piece suit, his mature face topped by a full brush-back of silver hair–and Sarah Lynch–an impeccable Eliza Doolittle, her figure both slender and buxom, her curled chestnut hair falling gently over her shoulders–held hands as they jogged their way through the line break, halting just above the orchestra pit. The two stars scanned the crowd and blew kisses to the assembled. It was Ms. Lynch’s last performance as guttersnipe turned lady and what a turn it was. Now, after a grueling year, she was taking her talent back to Hollywood where she’d made her fame and fortune. A movie remake of “My Fair Lady” was in the offing. Sarah beamed, and with clasped hands touched her heart and bowed in appreciation to her fans. A chorus member ran to her with a bouquet of roses. The crowd’s adulation intensified. Standing center-front she peered out into the gathering. She saw him again–a gorgeous man, powerfully built with broad shoulders. He wore a tailored black pin-stripe suit and silver tie. Middle-parted blond hair that fell gently over his forehead made him a dead-ringer for a young Brad Pitt. Angelina Jolie, this one’s better than yours, Sarah thought. He’d been to three performances of “My Fair Lady” and sat in the same seat for each. Whenever she’d laid eyes on him her knees buckled and she fantasized being with him, a real man, a man who might be interested in a beautiful, sexy woman. Not like many of the men on Broadway who were more interested in their male co-stars, or co-dancers, than they were with her. She made eye contact. His smile was soft and seductive. His eyes (were they blue?) reflected sadness, perhaps trauma or loss. Though she’d always loved strong men, the ones who could feel deeply appealed to her even more. This Brad–she was convinced–was that type of man. There’d be something special, exhilarating, between them soon. She was certain. She’d make the first move. Since there’d be no end-of-the-run-party–she’d made it clear to the cast that she wanted a quiet evening at The Waverly Inn in the West Village that included only her co-star Jeremy, her agent, and her publicist–she’d invite Brad to meet her at the restaurant entrance after her party left. Sarah signaled for a stagehand. “Quick, get me a piece of paper and something to write with,” she said. The young man nodded, ran back stage, and returned as directed. Sarah wrote, “the Waverly Inn, 1AM,” and placed the note in the bodice of her Victorian dress and headed into the audience. Squeals of delight met her as she crossed the invisible boundary that separated audience from actors. She knew as she approached Brad that she had to use discretion. Security cameras had the theater covered and the media was watching. A Page Six headline questioning, “what did Sarah Lynch give the handsome man in the third row?” was not something she needed. She walked the aisle shaking hands and cheek-kissing familiar faces. Fans gathered around as security rushed to control the impromptu lovefest. Brad approached, head bowed. She feigned dropping something on the floor, removed her note from her dress, rose, and placed it in his palm. She avoided making eye contact. Strong, but soft, warm hands, now that’s a good start. Sarah returned to the stage and continued saluting her admirers. She waved toward her co-star who bent his acknowledgment once again after which he reached for Sarah. Holding hands once more they made their final curtain call.

Inside the gates of a graveyard, a man turned off the headlights of his pick-up truck. He adjusted his night goggles. A dense city of marble and granite appeared before him through the otherworldly green. Breezes from the north cooled the pre-dawn air. Dew glistened off the grass, tarmac, and stone pathways. Cicada sang and crickets bowed in counterpoint, an electrical dirge perfectly linked to the surroundings. He reached for the GPS to check that it was secure on the dash. From here, the satellite device would guide him to the precise spot where he’d bring the woman… (spoiler alert. To read more, my dear friends, you’ll just have to wait for publication of “THE ONE.”)

“One By One” The Doobie Brothers

“Rikki Don’t Lose That Number” Steely Dan

“One Big Love” Emmy Lou Harris

6 thoughts on “Writing Sample from “THE ONE” (Sequel to Final Shot)

  1. “One (Blake’s Got A New Face)” from Vampire Weekend comes to mind. Awesome band. Anyway, as to the book snippet. Nice work so far. I don’t usually read the genre, but I liked “Final Shot” and I am sure “One” will suit me, also. My brother and I both are big fans of PNRR and are anxious to see where your new book goes. Best of luck!

  2. My fave song of all time is Three Dog Night’s cover of “One.” From what I read here so far, there are a few songs that have “One” as the main word in the title. Will be interesting to see if any of these songs come up in your new book. I am guessing that the character Dr. Ike will appear in the work and on his show may feature one of those songs. Will have to wait and see. The segment you shared with us is good, btw. Thanks.

  3. Hey Doc, Like what you shared with us so far. Hope you get it published soon. I am wild about anything Broadway even if it is scary. I am a new fan. Just finished Final Shot. I found it to be well crafted, scary and educational all at the same time! Quite an accomplishment I must say!

    One of my favorite Broadway shows is “No Strings.” While reflecting on it just now, I realize it is also related to writing because the male lead character is a Pulitzer Prize Winner suffering from writer’s block when he meets the female lead character. This was Richard Rogers only musical for which he wrote both the music and the lyrics, Oscar Hammerstein having passed away. As a quirky play on the two words of the title, he orchestrated the entire piece without any stringed instruments. Genius.

  4. The song that pops into my head immediately, of course is “One” from A Chorus Line. As to the teaser, you just gave us for your next book – yipes!! I am scared already! Of course, there are several ways to approach telling a thriller mystery…let the reader know what is happening and watch the protagonist solve the crime…let it all be a surprise to the reader, etc. I can’t tell which way your new thriller is headed. On the surface looks like Sarah just got herself a date in the cemetery instead of The Waverly Inn, but maybe not? Maybe the man in the second paragraph is not the Brad Pitt wannabe! Can’t wait to see what you do with this. Good luck with it all!

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