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Authors: Lygia Day Peñaflor

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BOOK: Unscripted Joss Byrd
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“You can open it.”

Lifting the lid, Chris says “Wow” at the brass telescope—the pirate kind that pulls out into a long tube. He stares at it for a good minute. “I'll make sure she gets it.”

There's nothing more to say about something we both understand through and through.

“Later … Chuck.” I punch him lightly on the shoulder.

Chris waits a beat before punching me back. “Later … Bessie.”

So that I don't cry, I step back to lift my surfboard up and onto my head until I feel the balance. The board presses against my sore knot; the pain reminds me how tough I am. I turn away toward the car, bracing my board with one hand and waving with the other.

“Keep your sunny side up, up! Hide the side that gets blue!” I sing, and I don't look back.

*   *   *

I know that Montauk Lighthouse is getting smaller and smaller behind us. But no matter how far away we go, I can count five seconds and remember that it's blinking just like it did when I didn't visit it during
The Locals

Viva finds an oldies station on the radio that's playing something funky with a trumpet and bubble sounds. She's tapping her hand on the steering wheel to the beat. I can bet she's picturing bell-bottoms and roller skates in her wind-blown head because as I listen to this music, I'm starting to picture them, too.

I reach into the bag at my feet and pull out the Montauk hoodie that Monique gave me the night of the worst scene. When I zip it on, I feel something in the pocket—the good luck sea glass from Terrance. Now I see that it isn't brown; it's deep green like moss or seaweed, and it isn't smooth along the edges yet. It needed more time.

The song blows louder over the radio with horns and crisp hand claps. I unclip my seat belt and pop up onto my knees.

Viva yells into the breeze, “The wind makes you feel so alive, doesn't it?”

It does. I'm reappearing breath by breath.

“So saucy!” She laughs and waves a hand to the sky.

My hair catches Montauk in each strand. The sticky salt air feels and smells the same as the day I got here except it's a second skin to me now, the way Chris became my brother in my heart. Straining against the speed, I stretch up tall. I pull my arm all the way back and throw Terrance's sea glass as far as I can toward the ocean because there is no such thing as luck. There's only work and no work, grown-ups and kids, truth and lies, pretending and being, action and cut, Norah and me, Viva and me. Me.




I'd like to thank the star makers, dream breakers, and soul takers who made this book possible:

The wonderful Molly Ker Hawn, for believing in me. My editor, Katherine Jacobs, who treated Joss, Chris, and the Montauk kids with love and care. The entire Roaring Brook team, especially Claire Dorsett, Jill Freshney, and Elizabeth Clark.

Wendy Nelson Tokunaga, who critiqued my earliest draft. Whitney Gardener and Kathleen Glasglow, for sharing the debut journey with me. Everyone at On Location Education, for the nonstop adventure. The cast and crew of
Boardwalk Empire,
for all those days at the beach. Rhoda Fine, Hollywood's favorite teacher, for her friendship and her stories. Oona Laurence, Stefania Owen, and the unstoppable mother/daughter duos I've been lucky enough to work with, especially Evy and Ryann Shane, who insisted I write a book in the first place.

My family and friends, especially Aloha LeBlanc, Gail Crawford, Tracy Borelli, William Fielding, Jasmine Glennon, Lily and John Fielding, Marina and Ciceron Opida, Rachelle Peñaflor, Xander and Rebecca Peñaflor, Bill and Gladys Fielding, Ninette Limpo, Jeannie Stratos, Stella Watala, Lidia and Joe Szelwach, Keri Pinzone, Sandra Weitzman, Gladimyr Sully, and Tanya Rubins, for rooting for me and celebrating so hard.

My brother, Joseph Peñaflor, for wondering when I was going to do this. The answer is now. My loving parents, Joe and Sarah Peñaflor, for always cheering the loudest even when instructed to hold all applause until the end. I love you. My sweet little Vera, who sat beside me, and my husband, Rob Szelwach, for more than I can say.

Thank you all.

We're happy now.


About the Author

Lygia Day Peñaflor
is a private academic teacher for young Hollywood stars. Her students have included the young casts of Gossip Girl and Boardwalk Empire as well as I Am Legend. She lives on Long Island. You can sign up for email updates


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Title Page

Copyright Notice






















About the Author



Text copyright © 2016 by Lygia Day Szelwach

Published by Roaring Brook Press

Roaring Brook Press is a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership

175 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York 10010

All rights reserved

The Library of Congress has cataloged the print edition as follows:

Names: Peñaflor, Lygia Day, author.

Title: Unscripted Joss Byrd / Lygia Day Peñaflor.

Description: First edition. | New York: Roaring Brook Press, 2016. | Summary: Joss Byrd, Americas most sought-after young actress, navigates the personal pressures of working on a new film and staying true to herself.

Identifiers: LCCN 2015039824 | ISBN 9781626723696 (hardcover) | ISBN 9781626723702 (ebook)

Subjects: | CYAC: Actors and actresses—Fiction. | Self-actualization—Fiction. | BISAC: JUVENILE FICTION / Performing Arts / Film. | JUVENILE FICTION / Social Issues / Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance.

Classification: LCC PZ7.1.P4454 Un 2016 | DDC [Fic]—dc23

LC record available at

Our eBooks may be purchased in bulk for promotional, educational, or business use. Please contact the Macmillan Corporate and Premium Sales Department at (800) 221-7945 ext. 5442 or by e-mail at
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eISBN 9781626723702

First hardcover edition, 2016

eBook edition, August 2016

BOOK: Unscripted Joss Byrd
3.69Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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