Meet Melissa Murphy: wine-drinking real estate agent who finds herself "accidentally" assuming the role of a spiritual blogger when her boyfriend leaves her for his yoga teacher. Can she keep her role secret while trying to win her man back? If the lying doesn't kill her, the poses might!
"...Achingly funny and impossibly wise..." Jenna McCarthy, author of, If It Was Easy They'd Call the Whole Damn Thing a Honeymoon; Living with and Loving the TV-Addicted, Sex-Obsessed, Not-so-handy Man You Married.
In two days I will be closing the biggest deal in two years. And in two months, I will have a birthday. I am ecstatic about the first one and suicidal about the second. A little about me: Previously, I spent eleven years in the retail industry, mostly squandering my paychecks on the employee discount. I like cute clothes. Eventually, though, I decided to get my real estate license. Five minutes later, the market crashed.
I am one of the lucky ones, though, because for one thing I live with my boyfriend, Ron, who has been around for several years now. OK, four years, eight months, and two days. How do I know this definite time frame? Because my mother reminds me weekly when we chat. I am certain she keeps a little calendar next to the phone entitled, How Long Since Melissa and Ron Have Been Dating Without Getting Married and Giving Me a Grandchild. And it’s not really a weekly chat as much as it is a guilt call, as in, if I don’t call her at least once a week she makes me feel even more guilty than she does about the fact I’ve not yet produced offspring for her viewing pleasure.
Now, about Ron: He’s a nice guy, really, and pretty cute, too. He’s nice in the sit-on-the-couch-with-a-beer-yelling-at-the-television-screen-when-his-team-is-losing kind of way. Oh, and he has become a bit of an Internet fiend lately. Always on the damn computer. Ron is the one who convinced me to get my real estate license. He said, “You’ve been selling clothes for years; I bet you’d be great at houses.” While Ron had the ability to see the big picture, I found it difficult to imagine that selling houses would be anything at all like working in the Women’s Fine Fashion Department of Haddock’s. After all, it isn’t like you can stand outside the dressing room while someone tries on a house. And customers get so agitated when they try to return a cardigan; what happens when it’s a condo?
Ron reminded me that with my own condo paid off (thanks to my father’s life insurance policy), and him covering the rest of our expenses (which is precisely how I donated so much of each paycheck to my special clothing and wine account) that living on commission would be a breeze, I would spend less on clothes (I knew he’d been snooping in my closet), and that when I did sell a house, it would be big money. So, I took the required classes online, passed the state exam, and suddenly found dozens of brokers pursuing me. OK, there were actually only two, but they both wanted me really badly. I choose Cal State Realty. Mostly because it’s close to my condo, and the broker reminds me of Sean Connery (without the accent).
My mother, of course, had a coronary over me giving up such a “promising” career as assistant department manager of such a “fine establishment” where she got to enjoy my employee discounts almost as much as I did.
“Oh, honey, I think it’s fine you got your real estate license, but you can’t be serious about quitting Haddock’s. There’s this cute little handbag I saw in the window last week—”
“Yes, Mom,” I say, cutting her off, but knowing exactly which handbag she’s referring to. “I’ve got enough saved, and of course I have Ron…” my words trail off as I consider what shoes I could wear with that damn purse.
“But I just read that the housing market is crashing. Things are going to get really bad.”
“I know, but really, I need a change, and I already have a deal in escrow. Do you realize the commission will be like four paychecks?”
My mother sits silent on the other end.
“Well, that was pretty easy,” she finally says, referring to the fact that I only took this nice couple out one time, wrote an offer that day, and did most of the paperwork in an hour or two.
“I know! Just imagine if I am not dead-dog tired from being on my feet all day, hanging up clothes and smiling at rude women.” And staying up drinking wine and eating ice cream from the container.
Tamara Lee Dorris has been a life-long fan of personal and spiritual development, and has written several books that fall under the category of "self-help." She wrote Secrets of a Spiritual Guru as a way of poking fun at how easy it is to become an online expert. Her other novels revolve around contemporary issues and spiritual enlightenment. Tamara is also an adjunct professor, radio host, and long time real estate professional who has gone crazy selling houses, loves yoga, drinks wine and is still as addicted as ever to personal development. She lives in Northern California with a bunch of annoying animals and her husband. She has four kids that she likes a lot and a mother that drives her nuts.
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