The chapter that follows is an excerpt from The Worlds of Long Division.  These are representative of the kinds of notes which give some insight into the writing of each chapter.

Chapter Notes — Book I

Part 1 — Roy


A relationship like Roy’s and Marco’s has to begin somewhere.  Ruxx and I wanted them to be friends from the time they were cubs.  We tossed around an idea or two, then set the topic aside.  Much later, this encounter on the playground popped into my head out of nowhere.  It allows the boys to bond without their moms necessarily becoming good friends.  It is no accident that Christine Russo is so dismissive of Oria Carrara, whom she sees as an inferior.  I had so much fun imagining the dialogue here, it practically wrote itself.

Swim Team

In the Dreams chapter, Roy tells Tracy that Marco once, “…scratched the hell out of this one ferret who made fun of me…”  I thought that was a story worth telling in more detail.  It also gave me a chance to explore more of the relationship between Roy and Marco before it became sexual.  While this chapter precedes Dreams in the story timeline, it was written long after that one.


Ruxx wrote the first version of this chapter.  There really wasn’t anything wrong with his treatment other than it didn’t feel like the parts I had written.  So I rewrote it in my style.  It was fun giving Marco an embarrassing and uncontrollable hard-on.  Originally, Eddie peeked at the boys in his rear-view mirror.  I learned later that the Model A wasn’t equipped with one inside the cab and had to revise that paragraph.


My high school Physics teacher wasn’t involved, but something like the pendulum challenge really happened.  I wanted an exotic sort of name for the Russo’s maid, so I stole the name Demelza from the heroine of the Poldark novels by Winston Graham.  I had so much fun writing Marco’s panic about the possibility that he and Roy might have been discovered sleeping in the nude by Roy’s mom.  Did she really see anything?  I’m not telling.

Lessons Learned

This chapter exists because romance isn’t always sweet and perfect.  Goofy stuff can happen sometimes and I had fun with that here.  Marco’s brothers are named after a pair of brothers I played with as a kid.  Their mom and dad were very Italian.

Studio Apartment

Roy and Marco were more than sex partners.  They planned a roadmap for their lives together.  This short chapter elaborates on that.  When you get to the Dreams chapter, it is no accident if you recognize any of the dialogue there from the opening scene here.  While a wide variety of sexual lubricants can be easily found in drug stores and supermarkets these days, they weren’t as easy to find in the 1930s.  Even the old standby, K-Y Jelly couldn’t be found outside of a doctor’s office until the 1970s.  It was fun to imagine and research what these guys might have tried improvising with.