Excerpt: 'overlove' by Geraldine Snell


Tuesday 25th April, 22:10

Home: Oakworth,Yorkshire

I have just found myself simultaneously trawling through the chaff on okcupid, cyberstalking the Bristol cutey and listening to your mix on soundcloud. I guess tonight’s a lonely night;  it’s my first night sans Mack for a few nights. I’ve been reading the Ethical Slut: A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships & Other Adventures and am keen to get on with some of this stuff. I actually right-swiped a guy during my indifferent Tinder left-swiping because he was a drummer called Curt and I thought that had too much potential to pass up on, but when we matched I didn’t really fancy him or have any inclination to meet him just because he was a drummer called Curt.

Anyway I’m saving myself and any extra-relationship activity for when I come and shake my booty at one of your nights,  when I’ll disguise myself as a carefree, sassy young thang, give you the eyes and try and engage you in flirtatious conversation, hopefully.Then you won’t think I’m some kind of cyberstalking fan girl (although, what’s so wrong with that?) and you’ll be taken by my sextastic presence and entranced by my sexy body and enthralled by my sexy brain.That’s the plan…



Monday 1st May, 18:50

 Mack’s House: Bingley,Yorkshire

Upon my distant and very half-arsed stalking of you I have come across a poster advertising ‘inner u’ – a warehouse party which encourages dancing and self-expression as socially transformative – on Leela’s Instagram! It sounds like my cup of tea, and is handily located 5 minutes’ walk from Rana’s on the street parallel to Rose’s studio, so feasibly they could’ve already heard about it ont’scene. Still, I feel like a country bumpkin phoney impostor, that ‘someone like me’ shouldn’t be going to such parties, as inclusive as the descriptions sound.

It’s in a few weeks and I imagine you will be there, and I need a trip down to London anyway…

I’m just thinking maybe it is a way to kill three birds with one stone: low-key stalk you, catch up and party with my pals AND discover my ‘true me’? Maybe I can really think about how I ‘present’ myself in a setting where I will totally fully be accepted, in an environment “founded on the principle of the club space as a house for self-expression”. Come to think of it, who the fuck am I? I don’t really buy the idea that you can find that out on the dancefloor – for all the fleeting euphoria these things usually make me feel deeply lonely – but it’s worth a shot, right? Mack has given me permission to play it by ear etc. Oo, no, he just read that over my shoulder and he says I have to clarify that actually :S – he says he can’t stop me, which is an entirely different thing because it’s not explicit permission, and suggests a reluctant setting free in order to get me back, like a bird in a cage. His vision of paradise comes from the original Persian, meaning ‘walled garden’, the perfect cocoon; I keep teasing him about the fact that all I want to do is install a cat flap… is that jjreally so wrong?


Tuesday 9th May, 20:15

Home: Oakworth,Yorkshire

how did we get 2 here…!

join us for inner u 5: same space, same rules, but for this event we will be exploring DIY identities – we want to see u construct a persona for urself, taking inspiration from and making use of everyday objects and materials. channel ur true u…creatively 🙂

we are a generous and welcoming party, accountable and aware of how our actions may affect others in a space. if someone is making u feel uncomfortable during the night let one of us on the door or behind the decks know – we promise to listen and put a stop to it immediately. there is no guestlist: everyone is equal at inner u.

see u soon! Xxx

^^^^^^^ so I’ve booked the coach! To London

To find my true me Rana will come

Maybe other pals will come And we will party

Shit can’t believe it’s actually happening and he’s actually gonna be there and I’m gonna watch him from afar again

Shit Shit Shit Shit

Him? You! YOU CURT,YOU!!!!!

But what if I make you feel uncomfortable and you let someone behind the decks know and they put a stop to it immediately and I am publicly humiliated?

What if they don’t let me in because of my evil intentions? Hehe

I just don’t care anymore, I‘m beyond shame. I just need to round this off! In fact, I’m so beyond myself that I don’t even find ‘inner u’ cringey, as I’m sure my old cynical self usually would. All I knows is I got a ticket to Curtville and I hope it’s one way… I’ve had my verse lyrics now for a while which I could serenade you with:

It’s losing its appeal, since I, fell aslee-eep at the wheel,

Gone beyo-ond right and wro-ong, I’m just looking for a way to carry on,

Cos this road winds on and o-on, if you keep the beat then I will drift along,

Never questioning the wh-hy, of, my, self-perpetuated hypomanic high

But then it goes into the “I watch you from afar…” bit and chorus, which I still haven’t doctored the lyrics for. The thing I’m most stuck with though, drummer boy? The drums…



Thursday 11th May, 17:00

Mack’s House: Bingley,Yorkshire

I had a revelation whilst lying awake facing my dear dear sleeping Macky. It was a most tender moment, our foreheads and knees touching, warmth and whatever else lifting my heart as I held his slim furry thigh. I’d seen a very tender post and caption about you on Leela’s Instagram, and had this overwhelming feeling of happiness and expansiveness; that you are to her what Mack is to me. That is so precious. It almost made me feel like scrapping my plan to attend the party but I’ve booked now and really fancy a trip to London and a dance anyway.

At that moment, as my magical Other snoozed, I got it into my head that Mack should come to inner u with me. It would be perfect! It would be balanced and sensible and would stop me having this anticipation and desperation for something to come of it. It’d be so deeply sad for us to not share it, and I  will be less threatening to you because there won’t be the same weird psycho lady stalker dynamic. Although I don’t think he’ll want to, mostly because of the blag associated with going down to London and the ball ache of staying up late partying and upsetting the body clock rather than any dramatic moralistic objection.



Tuesday 16th May, 20:30

Home: Oakworth,Yorkshire

I pitched it to Mack and he was sort of up for it but it seems he’d only be doing it for my sake and thinks I’d have a better time dancing with Rana without him there as the ball and chain. Christ, I’m so busy this week with the students’ end of year show opening on Thursday and all my academic work, but it’ll be good to get down to that LDN and have a breather, get some closure, see some pals. I haven’t even thought about how I’m supposed to express my true me through DIY or everyday objects. I have some vague ideas about using dishcloths, steel wool scourers and a general kitchen sink vibe. Maybe I’ll wear a plug chain as a necklace? I’m not going to give it too much thought.

Watching a live video I haven’t seen before, I start to think that maybe most of this was about the music; the sexiness of it, the aspiration of being a performing musician, my desire to be the object of your (plural) desires as you play to an audience of me. I bet you’re wondering why I set my sights on you particularly, Curt. To put it simply, I find you the most attractive. How shallow, eh? I think again of your lissome but goofy manner and how you drum and DJ and imagine us dancing as a warm-up to fucking. I can’t really believe I’m going to see you on Saturday and I don’t really know how or whether to prepare, or what my plan of action is, but I’ll just have to drift along with whatever weird magnetism is pulling me towards you, towards inner u. Maybe this has all just been the universe’s convoluted way of getting me to loosen up and party. If so, it’s a bit of a piss-take.


Excerpted from overlove by Geraldine Snell, Dostoyevski Wannabe, 2018. With permission of the publisher.