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I am currently busy at work on a novel loosely based on my parents' courtship. The novel (yet to be named) will be a World War II romance set in the Lower Naugatuck Valley since my dad was a native of Derby and my mom a Shelton native. Here's a photo of the happy couple early in their relationship. As I progress with the novel, I will update this page with new photos, snippits of love letters, trivia from the time period, and brief excerpts from the book...so come back and visit! Here's a little teaser from Chapter 1.
As soon as the song ended, Michael moved in and addressed the G.I. instead of the beautiful girl.
“If you don’t mind, private, I’d like to have the next dance with the young lady.” Michael could tell the G.I. was miffed at being interrupted while he was trying to make time, but he withdrew peacefully.
It was Michael’s good fortune that the next number was “The Nearness of You,” a fox trot.
He gently placed his right hand on the small of the girl’s back and took her right hand in his left. As he led her in a box step, he was surprised at how effortlessly and adeptly she followed him, even though he had just observed it from a distance.
“And what might your name be?” Michael asked, trying to muster up as much charm as possible.
“My name might be Cecilia,” she said. “And what might your name be?”
“My name might be Michael,” he replied, liking the game they were playing.
“Michael? Nice name,” she said. “Well, why don’t I address you as Michael and why don’t you address me as Cecilia, even if those are only what our names might be?”
Cecilia’s humor wasn't lost on Michael, and he laughed. “Very witty,” he said.
When Cecilia flashed her flawless smile at him, white teeth gleaming, and pursed her painted red lips, he knew he was a goner.
Suddenly, Michael felt a tap on his shoulder. He glanced to his left to see a red haired guy in a Navy uniform standing there with a dumb look on his face.
“Mind if I cut in, friend?”
“Yeah, I do mind,” Michael replied. “This isn’t the senior prom, and besides, it’s 1942, not 1930, so get lost.”
“Don’t worry, sailor,” Cecilia added. “I’ll dance with you next.”
As the sailor backed off, Cecilia looked directly into Michael’s eyes. “Wow! You’re rather possessive of girls you dance with, aren’t you, Michael?”
“I’m sorry if I was impolite. It’s just...it’s just that when I focus on something, I don’t like being distracted.”
“Well, in case you didn’t notice, Michael, I’m not a something. I’m a somebody.”
“Yes...yes you are. Believe me, I noticed the minute I saw you. Me, myself, let’s just say I’m hoping to be a somebody.”
A retired educator and theatre founder, Gary is excited to be embarking on an adventure that he has been dreaming about since college. Gary now divides his time between writing and his other great passion, music. A child of the 1960s, he continues to explore his relationship to art, spirituality, and politics in an effort to understand the impact these have had and continue to have on his life.
The Scarpa Team
As a family, the Scarpas have worked in partnership to create theater in the Lower Naugatuck Valley for decades. After Gary and Fran opened Center Stage Theatre in Shelton in 2005, Gina and Mia were tremendously instrumental in the success of the organization. In the process, the Scarpa family turned Center Stage into a thriving non-profit with a budget of over a half million dollars. As Gary began writing original works, he saw that the Scarpa Team had the skills to help make his venture into the world of writing successful as well.
the Book Corner
Join Gary here in the Book Corner for shared thoughts, ideas, and insights about writing, life, and much more!