"A kind of Devil Wears Prada for international investment firms—The Creepshow also delivers a poignant modern love story set in Paris. What’s not to love?” -- Amy Impellizzeri, author of the award-winning Lemongrass Hope
I'm thrilled to announce the launch of my latest novel, The Creepshow, now available in paperback and ebook on Amazon.
This book touches upon a subject near and dear to my heart: the treatment of women in the workplace post maternity leave. The Creepshow tells the story of Wanda, a thirtysomething single mother who returns to her job at an international financial services firm after maternity leave and finds herself facing discrimination. Sadly, this book reflects the state of things for women in the corporate world. Discrimination is alive and well. I've seen it and felt it.
Through the power of words, we can fight back. And we can hope that in the not-too-distant future, this work of fiction will seem less and less like reality.
In the meantime, I invite you to enjoy the following excerpt from The Creepshow...
Raymond Grant’s reign was one of terror. Because anyone who hoped to climb the corporate ladder had better please him. And Raymond was not easy to please. Raymond greeted Wanda, kissing her on both cheeks the European way, and led her into his office as if they were on an important secret mission together.
“First things first, Wendy,” he said.
But he didn’t seem to notice the correction as he settled down behind his desk. Two of the buttons on his shirt looked as if they might pop at any second as the bright blue material stretched across his belly.
He slid a key ring toward Wanda.
“What’s this?” she asked.
“My wife and I won’t be in our apartment for the next few days, so you can stay in the guest room. Let yourself in, make yourself at home.”
“But I thought I would be staying at the Plaza. I had to fill out all that travel paperwork.” Suspicion filled Wanda’s mind. A room was ready and waiting at the Plaza, Whilt’s swanky hotel of choice. She knew that, because upon arrival, she’d called to verify the check-in time. So the question was, Who would be staying there?
“Never mind the details, you’ll be more than comfortable in our home. It’s much more personal, unlike the cold feeling of a hotel. Now let’s get down to business.”
Wanda tried to push the strange start to the conversation out of her mind as Raymond stared at her across the heavy mahogany desk that didn’t match the modernity of the rest of the decor.
“We want to expand the reach of our funds. Today, it’s all about Asia, and at the moment, we’re losing ground over there. We need to offer more to our clients in China, Japan…”
Wanda felt her heart thumping, a combination of relief and fear. Raymond hadn’t yet mentioned her recent fund performance, but that didn’t mean he didn’t have something worse planned to discuss.
“As of next week, you will be expanding your international fund to include Asian companies, and you also will take on the management of another Asian fund established through our office in Shanghai.”
Wanda hesitated long enough to digest this indigestible information but not long enough to lose the nerve to speak out.
“But that makes no sense. I’ve built an expertise in Western European countries; I’m familiar with their management styles and know the CEOs. With Asia, I would have to start from scratch. That would be fine if I didn’t already have four other funds to manage!”
“Are you saying this is too much for you?”
“I’m saying it isn’t logical—not when others in the office only manage two funds. Are you planning on paying me a second salary for taking on this second job of sorts?”
“Considering the performance of your current funds, no.”
Wanda wanted to burst out with something sarcastic, something rebellious, but the words remained captive in her throat. She rarely fell silent after what she considered an injustice; usually her emotions won out. But this time was different. She was in a state of disbelief. Her mind was racing. Was this punishment, stemming from her rejection of Louis? No, he didn’t wield that much power. But he probably did all he could to push her into a difficult position.
“You’ll have to fly to Shanghai next week. CEOs of the biggest Asian companies will be at a conference there. A perfect opportunity for you to do some research.”
Wanda knew about the conference since one of her colleagues, who was based in Shanghai, attended each year. If she hadn’t been suspicious of Raymond’s intentions, she actually would have been excited about the opportunity. But somehow, with her other funds suffering, and the learning curve this new endeavor required, this didn’t seem like an opportunity. This seemed like a map to lead her down the road to failure.
Find The Creepshow on Amazon!