Monday, December 30, 2013

A Holiday Break

Hello all! Just a reminder that there is no free read for this week because of the holidays. But The Saga of Steve and Joey will be back next week. But just because there's no new story doesn't mean I'm not writing. I'm starting a brand-new short story for an anthology. I don't have a lot of information to share with you now, but be sure to check back for more details. Have a great rest of the holiday week everyone!

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Saga of Steve and Joey-2013 Christmas Interlude

Hello everyone! I hope everyone is having a good start to the week. Today's free read from The Saga of Steve and Joey is set about seven years after Steve and Joey first meet in Part 1 of the saga. It's about the first Christmas Steve and Joey have with Aiden. Enjoy!

Christmas Interlude


I’m just starting to come out of a deep sleep when I feel a soft pressure against my lips. It is warm and makes me smile against the velvety softness. The pressure retreats and I open my eyes to stare into Joey’s gaze.
“Good morning,” I slur out.
“Merry Christmas, baby.”
I wrack my brain, thinking about the day. It’s rough, still trying to wake up my foggy brain. But he’s right. It is Christmas.
“Merry Christmas,” I reply.
Joey’s smile lights up the room. He always was a big kid when it came to Christmas. And this year he’s been even more enthusiastic.
“Let’s go get Aiden,” Joey says enthusiastically as he jumps out of bed.
“Baby, baby,” I say quickly, grabbing his arm.
“Let him sleep. What time is it?”
“Well, we gave him his bottle about two so he should be up soon. But let him sleep.”
You would have thought I killed his dog the way he looks at me. He’s just so crushed. “But it’s his first Christmas.”
“I know. But it’ll be Christmas all day. Besides, he’s only three months old. He has no idea what’s going on.”
“But don’t you want to see what’s under the tree?”
“Considering I bought half of it, I think the excitement can wait. Come on, let’s go back to sleep. Aiden will be up soon enough.”
Joey gives me a dubious look before sliding back down against my chest. I wrap an arm around him and hold him tight.
I spend the next hour or so holding my man tight, drifting in and out of sleep. I don’t think Joey is asleep and I’m proven right when the first cry comes from the nursery. Joey is out of bed like a shot, almost racing down the hall to get to our boy. His movements wake me up the rest of the way and drag myself out of bed at a much more sedate pace.
I head to the nursery and stand just inside the doorway. Joey has Aiden wrapped in his arms, swaying our baby from side to side. I can hear him whispering words to Aiden, but I can’t make them all out since he is facing away from me. But when I hear the word ‘Christmas’ I figure Joey is explaining the holiday to him.
When Joey finishes saying his piece, he turns to face me with a huge smile on his face.
“Okay. Aiden understands Christmas now. We can go open presents.”
I smile as I walk farther into the room. “Oh, he does, does he?”
“Yes,” Joey says with upmost confidence.
“He’s sucking on his hand.”
Joey looks down at our baby as I chuckle at his obviousness. But Joey is not deterred. “Come on, Scrooge. We’re going to open presents.”
So the three of us head downstairs. The Christmas tree we set up in the living room is still surrounded by presents of all sizes and shapes. Joey immediately sits on the floor next to the present pile. Knowing his arms must be getting tired, I grab Aiden’s reclining chair and sit it next to him.
Joey takes the hint and straps Aiden in before grabbing the presents. As he starts to sort them out, I go and make a bottle for Aiden, who is starting to show signs of fussiness.
Joey manages to hold off his excitement a little longer while we feed and change Aiden, but by the time I finish, he is practically vibrating with excitement. The presents are not only divided up by person, but also neatly stacked by size.
“Now can we open presents,” Joey says as I strap Aiden back in his chair.
“Go ahead,” I say amused.
The rest of the morning passes in a blur or laughter and wrapping paper. Joey and I got Aiden clothes, toys and all sorts of other things babies need. He doesn’t notice. But Joey and I have fun, laughing and smiling over the gifts we got each other. Eventually, all of the gifts are open and we start playing. We try to engage Aiden with some of his toys, but he quickly losses interest before falling asleep.
“Joey,” I call to him just as the clock hits noon.
“Yeah,” he calls from behind his new tablet. He has been engrossed in the things since Aiden fell asleep.
“We have to get ready to go to Lucas and Hal’s place.” We’re having dinner with our two best friends, since neither one of us have a relationship with our families anymore.
Joey lifts his head and pats the seat next to him on the couch. I head over and sit in the spot, leaning over to kiss him as I go.
“What,” I ask once I’m settled.
“I love you.”
“I love you too.”
“And this has been the best Christmas ever. I don’t think it will ever get better than this.”
I chuckle. “Sure, it will. In a year or two Aiden will start being interested in presents and Santa. Then it will get even more fun.”
Joey just smiles more. “You’re right. That will be more fun. I won’t be the only one excited about the holiday.”
“I’m excited. Just not as much as you.”
“I am not,” I reply indignantly.
“Yes, you are. But you’re my Scrooge.” Joey leans over and kisses my lips. And in this moment, I know they’re will be many more Christmases to come. And as long as I have Joey and Aiden, they will all be merry and bright.

Well, there is your 2013 Christmas Interlude. I hope you enjoyed it. Remember there will not be a new part next week as I will be working, spending time with family, etc. But check back on January 6th for Part 5. At that time, we will be going backwards in time to where Part 4 left off. See you all then. 

Have a great holiday everyone!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Making Sense of my Crazy LIfe

Hello everyone!
   I am very sorry I have not been on here too much lately. Real life has really kept me very busy. I haven't had much time for writing or anything else. Christmas is always a really busy time for me, as I spend time with family and friends. If anyone out there is following me, I do most of my work on Wednesdays and Thursdays, as those are my days off. Well, I lost yesterday because I took a day trip to New York with some family. It was a great day, but there was no writing. And today, I slept most of the day. Going forward isn't much better. For the next two weeks I have to work mandatory 6 days. (The "joys" of working in a Customer Service industry.) So until my birthday comes around on January 11th,  not much will be moving on the writing front.
     But here is where all of my writing stands now. MWMGML was just resubmitted for consideration. Hopefully, there will be a better result this time. Look for more updates in the new year. The first draft of Death: Meet Love and Happiness is finished and I am hoping to start the editing in the next few weeks. I don't know how successful I will be, but hopefully, I can edit a chapter or two on the days I work. My short story, which I was hoping to finish this year, was put on hold when I found out I needed to edit MWMGML. That will take first priority once I have time again. When all that is done, hopefully, MWMGML will be under contract and I can start the second book in that series. If not, maybe I will start another small project. i don't really know. I'm just trying to take it one day at a time. But I'll be sure to keep you updated.
     I hope this clears up my absence lately. Keep checking back for more updates on my writing, as well as free reads on Mondays! Thank you!


Monday, December 16, 2013

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 4

Hello everyone! I hope everyone is enjoying their December. I have been sooo busy with my personal life and as a result my writing as suffered. I will be going back to editing work on Thursday and I will, hopefully, update everyone then. For now, I have Part 4 of The Saga of Steve and Joey. Enjoy!

Part 4
I stare at the phone in my hand, the screen glowing in the low light. I want to call Joey, but I made such an idiot of myself on our first date. I know he didn’t seem to mind, but I did. How stupid was I almost falling asleep like that?
At the time, I was much too tired to care. But the way that he drove me home and let me get more sleep rather than try anything X-rated. It made me feel bad that our date ended like that.
But I’m getting another chance. He’s given me his number. I have to go back to work tomorrow, but for right now, I’m well-rested and feeling good. I have time to chat. All I have to do is hit the damned call button.
I move my finger so it’s hovering over the button, but somehow I just can’t get the balls to lower my finger to the screen. I don’t know why. What the hell am I so nervous about? Joey seemed like a perfectly normal guy. Not insane, good sense of humor, hot body. What more could I possibly ask for in a man?
So why aren’t I calling him? Am I really that scared? It has been a long time since I had a real boyfriend. Before medical school.
Actually, if I am really honest with myself, I’ve never had a boyfriend. I was always too focused on me, trying to get the best grades and working my ass off to make sure I could get into the best college and then the best med school. Sure, there were boyfriends in my past, but nothing all that serious. Just someone I could take to parties and have some extracurricular activities with. I’ve never really had someone who could be considered a life partner. Is that what’s freaking me out? The prospect of having someone I could share my life with. It is a huge step. But with med school, was I really ready for all of that?
I bite my lip as I stare at the screen again. I hover my finger about the little green telephone symbol that would connect me to Joey. And before I can change my mind, I press my finger to the screen.
I hold my breath as the phone starts to ring. I’m torn between hoping and dreading him picking up the phone. Nevertheless, I start planning out what I’m going to say when the voicemail picks up.
“Uh,” I say awkwardly as I’m caught off-guard by the sound of his voice.
“Joey?” Yeah, that’s very smooth. Who else would it be? It’s his phone. Geez, I’m so stupid.
“Yeah. Who is this?”
“Uh…this is Steve. From the other night.”
“Oh,” Joey replies with a good amount of happiness. “I was wondering when you were going to call.”
“Yeah. Well, I had to catch up on my sleep,” I reply with a relatively smooth voice. Smoother than I would have thought possible, given how nervous I am.
“Yeah, I would agree with that.”
“So what’s been going on?”
And that is just the beginning. The two of us talk for three hours, chatting about everything we didn’t cover over our dinner date. Any hesitation I had during that dinner slowly fades away as we laugh over movies that we loved as kids and books we love now. The man is a total nerd with a propensity for happy endings. It made for some eclectic tastes and interesting conversations.
At the end of the longest conversation ever, Joey explains his need to go to work tomorrow. We say our goodbyes, which still involves a lot of laughing and joking. We even agree to meet again next week.
As I lower the phone and disconnecte the call, I have a smile on my face so wide my face hurts. I may have been nervous at the beginning, but now all of my fears have been put to rest. Being with Joey, regardless of how experienced I am with relationships or how busy I am, is something so natural. I can even feel the first stirrings of what might be considered love. That is a huge leap for me, but there is just something about him. We click and there is no other way to describe it.
We have our date next week and we’ll see what happens from there on. But the good news is, I don’t think I have to fear calling him ever again.  

And there is Part 4! I hope you enjoyed it.

So next week is December 23rd, and in observance of the holidays, we are talking a break from Steve and Joey’s story at this point in their relationship. We will be jumping farther ahead in the timeline to see what their first Christmas with Aiden. I probably won’t have a story on December 30th, because of the holiday, so look for Part 5 on January 6th! Stay tuned!

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 3

Good evening everyone! I hope everyone's having a good Monday, despite the snow and ice that had walloped so much of the States. Hopefully, you have someplace warm to curl up and read Part 3 of The Saga of Steve and Joey because here is is! Enjoy!

Part 3

I watch Steve get out of my car and walk to his front door. I sneak a glance at his ass as he walks. I feel a little guilty about it, since the guy is so out of it. But most of the guilt fades away when I see it. It’s nice, tight and just the right size to hold on to.
As soon as the door shuts behind him, I take the car out of park and start to drive home. I have to admit I was a little skeptical when Lucas first set this meeting up. I’d never been on one before, but I had certainly heard the horror stories. It wasn’t that I didn’t trust Lucas, because I did. He was one of the nicest guys in my office. Everyone knew that if you needed something you went to see Lucas and he would do everything he could to help you.
Despite his reputation, I didn’t set out to get a date. I remember back to that fateful lunch when Lucas started talking about his new beau. It made me feel lonely. He must have noticed, because he asked me if I had anyone special in my life. I couldn’t even get the words out. I just shook my head and let that speak for itself.
But Lucas was not so deterred. He badgered me until he found out I was gay and then set me up with one of his friends. I wasn’t given too much information about Steve before the date. I knew he was a med student and that he and Lucas were best friends. I was also told he was hot, but that didn’t mean much coming from the guy’s friend.
And yet, everything Lucas told me about Steve was true. And then some. The man was absolutely adorable. He looked good enough to eat, even with those dark circle under his eyes.
I feel bad now that I didn’t notice his exhaustion earlier in the date. We had a lovely start to the meal, getting to know each other. I learned a lot about him and his back story. Where he went to college, how many siblings he had, that he was a geek in high school. And he learned the same stuff about me.
It should have been boring, telling my life story over again. After all, how many first dates can you go on before you just want to type it all out and hand it to the person.?
But there was something about Steve. I didn’t want to hand him a sheet of paper about my life. I wanted to tell him. I can’t even really explain why. I just knew I needed to talk with him and share my feelings with him. Personally.
It was a little weird at first. I had never in my life wanted to talk to a person so much. Nor had I ever had such a good time talking with someone. Sure, it was simple and mundane, but there was just something about him.
At least until he started to fall asleep on me. At first, I have to admit I was a little perturbed. I know I’m not the most exciting guy in the world, but falling asleep was really rude. Of course, when I learned why it made me feel like an ass. I guess I should have put med student and lack of sleep together, but, for some reason, I just didn’t.
Once I found the reason behind it, I couldn’t help but admire him just a little bit more. He tried so hard to be involved in the date when all he must have wanted to do was collapse. It makes me think maybe he’s interested in me too. And that kiss…
There is something special about that man. I hope he calls. Because I really, really think we might have something here.

There you have it! Part 3 is complete.

Next week: Steve tries to work up the nerve to call Joey. 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

And the Hits Just Keep On Coming

Hello all. It has really not been a good week for me. Journey of Xibalta just got rejected. I have the option of doing some editing, waiting and resubmitting, but I'm not sure I want to wait. I've spent a good part of the night looking into other options, like self-publishing and other publishing houses. I have some decisions to make, but right now I'm really not thrilled with any of my choices. I think I'm just going to put the whole thing on hold until after Christmas and decide what to do then. In the meantime, I just keep editing MWMGML, Death-Meet Love and Happiness and work on a few short stories.

No one even said being an author would be easy.

Until next time...


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Another Story Done and other Writing News

Hello everyone! I hope everyone enjoyed the holidays that have taken place over the last week. I know I did. But I've found that the holiday chaos makes it very hard to maintain some balance in terms of writing and blogging. So I apologize for my absence. Don't forget. If you ever feel I'm gone for too long or if anyone out there wants to chat, feel free to contact me. All of the info is here.

So what have I been up to? Well, tonight I just finished the first draft of a brand-new novella. I've decided to call it Death-Meet Love and Happiness. It's all about the Grim Reaper and his quest to find love. It is a dark comedy with moments of real heart. it came in at just over 32,000 words. So I'm going to start proofing it next week and hopefully, it will be done by the end of the year.

If you aren't willing to wait for one of my new stories, I have a brand-new free-read serial. It's called "The Saga of Steve and Joey." I've currently finished the first two parts. You can read the first part, as well as the inspiration for the story here. The second part is here. And be sure to check out a new chapter in their story every Monday night.

So that's my good news. Sadly, not all of my news is happy. My World, My Game, My Love was not accepted for publication. It's a little disappointing, but the good news is this is not the end of this story. I've been given the opportunity to re-edit the story and change some of the story's structure and resubmit. So I will be working on that over the next few weeks and hopefully I can get that in within the next month. finger crossed that it's accepted this time.

That's pretty much where all of my writing is at the moment. Next week, in addition to editing Death-Meet Love and Happiness and My World, My Game, My Love, I want to start working on my short story Who I Really Am. It's kind of been put on the back-burner while I worked on other things, but I want to start working on it again. I'm a little nervous about this one, since I've never written a transgendered story, but hopefully, it goes well. I will be sure to keep you updated.

So that's my life. What's going on with all of you? Let me know in the comments. And don't forget to check back on Monday for the next chapter in "The Saga of Steve and Joey".


Monday, December 2, 2013

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 2

Hello everyone! I hope everyone had a great holiday last week. I know I did. But it's Monday again which means the next chapter in the saga of Steve and Joey. If you missed the first part, you can read it here. So now we will continue the story with Steve and Joey's first date. Enjoy!

Part 2
After the sparks that flew between us when we first met, I expect dinner to be a more interesting affair. But, actually, it’s quite mundane. We look over the menus, talking about the food choices and if we’re getting appetizers or not. Once we order, we make small talk, chatting about this and that. Nothing really important.
I can’t deny the man’s magnetic personality and the fact there’s clearly a lot of chemistry between us. But as dinner starts to wind down, the exhaustion I’d been keeping at bay came to the forefront, the combination of the full stomach and the long day makes my eyes burn from being forced open.
“Hey? Are you okay?”
Pushing a smile on my face, I look up at Joey. Even through the exhaustion, I can’t help but smile at his concern. Maybe this date isn’t as mundane as I thought. Maybe there really is something here. Too bad, I’m too tired to care.
“Yeah. It’s just been a really long week. Haven’t slept for awhile.”
“How long’s a while?”
“About four days since I took more than a power nap.”
Joey’s jaw drops to the floor. “What do you mean four days? How the hell are you even still up?”
“Honestly, I have no idea,” I say with as much humor as I can muster.
“Why haven’t you slept?”
“Because I’m a med student. We sign away our rights to sleep.”
“That’s awful.”
“That’s life.”
“Why don’t we skip desert and call it a night? You’re obviously falling asleep.”
I couldn’t help but feel a rush of disappointment at his words. Sure, it isn’t the most exciting date in the world, but I still there might be something between us. Something that could lead to a real relationship. But did he feel the same? Is he really worried about me or is he just trying to end this date? I’m not sure. And I really don’t feel like trying to figure it out. I’m starting to get a headache from not sleeping.
“Is that your way of getting rid of me,” I say, cringing at the harshness of my voice. I didn’t mean for it to sound that way. I just want an answer. Damn headache.
“No,” Joey says vehemently. “Of course not. I’ve enjoyed our date. Haven’t you?”
The hurt in his voice shakes me out of my own head for a minute. Maybe I wasn’t reading this wrong. Maybe he really does want to be with me.
“Of course I have,” I say as quickly as possible. “I’m sorry. I guess I just didn’t think you were in to me.”
Joey shakes his head. “Wow. You must be tired. I think you are amazing. I mean, I admit I had my doubts when Lucas set this blind date up, but you’ve proven me wrong. I mean, you’re going to be a doctor, you are seriously hot and you have an amazing personality when you’re not falling asleep. How could I not be in to you?”
I’m shocked. “Really? But all we’ve done is make small talk.”
“What do you think first dates are for?”
I just stare at him as he motions the waiter over. He quickly pays the bill, fending off any attempt for me to help pay. I really am too tired to fight him, so I just let him have his way and soon we’re walking out side by side.
“Where are you parked,” he asks as soon as we’re outside.
“I walked.”
“Do you want a ride?”
“No, it’s okay. It’s not far.”
Joey shakes his head and takes my hand. “Come on, let me drive you. I can get you to your bed faster.”
The prospect did sound pretty tempting, so I didn’t fight as he led me to a cute little Toyota. It’s painted a bright blue, which seems to suit his happy personality. I slide into the front seat, trying not to close my eyes as soon as my body sinks into the leather seat.
Joey jumps in the driver seat and starts the engine.
“So where am I going,” he asks.
Somehow I manage to stay awake long enough to give him directions and before I know it, I’m in front of my building.
“Thanks for the ride,” I say as I realize the date is over.
An awkward silence reigns over the car as I try to figure out the next step. I already know I want to see him again, but how do I go about asking?
“Gimme your phone,” Joey demands out of nowhere.
Curious, I hand it over without a fight. I watch as he flips through the screen and taps on the digital keyboard before handing it back to me.
“There. Now you have my number. Call me when you’ve had some sleep.”
Happy this isn’t going to be the end, I nod before turning and placing my hand on the door handle.
“Steve,” Joey calls right before I open the door.
“Yeah,” I ask, turning back.
I can only watch as Joey leans over and kisses me gently on the lips. “Thank you for tonight. I had a lot of fun. Call me and we’ll do it again.”
I sit there frozen for a second, my brain trying to process what the hell just happened. Finally, everything clicks. Joey likes me. He wants to go out again. Even with me almost falling asleep on him. I’m so happy I want to kiss him all over again, but I need to sleep. Kissing will come later.
“I will. Thanks again.”
Acting on impulse, I lean forward and quickly peck Joey’s lips before opening the door and heading up to the main door. Using my key, I open the door and let myself in. A huge smile creeps onto my face as soon as the door shuts behind me. Joey kissed me. He wants to go out with me again. I feel a strange happiness I haven’t felt in a long time. I would have to call Lucas and thank him later. But for right now, my bed is calling my name.

Well, there’s Part 2. I hope everyone liked it.

Next week: We move to Joey’s point of view to see what he thought of Steve and their first date. 

Saturday, November 30, 2013

For Those of You Who Missed It...

For those of you who missed it, I was just recently on Harmony Ink's website for Five Things Friday. My article is all about giving writing advice to young writers who want to enter the Young Author's Challenge. Check it out here.

Monday, November 25, 2013

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 1

Hello everyone! I know I've been quiet for awhile, but that's because I've been working on a brand-new project. I've decided to abandon the weekly prompts for a little while. Why? Because I've started something new.

I'm working on a serial for you entitled "The Saga of Steve and Joy". Every Monday I will put up a new chapter in the lives of Steve Rogers and Joey Matheson. It starts with how they met and will progress through their relationship. Some will be stand-alone snippets of life, while others will be longer events told in multiple parts. But they will all be told in chronological order.

So who are Steve and Joey? Well, they are two characters previously featured in my short story "Life's Little Troubles." The story is set many years after Part 1 of their saga, but there was something about them that I couldn't let go. Which is why I choose to write more about them. If you don't remember the free read I'm talking about you can find it here.

So I've talked long enough. I hope you enjoy my new endeavor, starting with Part #1, which tells how our characters first met.

The Saga of Steve and Joey

Part 1

Why am I doing this? I’m on no sleep and I’m probably going to fall asleep at any minute. So why did I agree to go on a blind date? And, more importantly, why the hell had I agreed?
Leaning forward, I brace my hands on the sink and close my eyes. I can’t do this. I’m going to collapse. I should just call and cancel.
But even as I think it, I know I would never do that. Med school is kicking my ass. Because of it, I haven’t been out in almost two months. Honestly, the whole thing is starting to depress me, which is why I let my friend Lucas set me up on this date.
Splashing some water on my face, I try to wake my tired body up. I can do this. It’s only dinner, after all. Shouldn’t take more than two hours. I can do this. And then I will sleep for twenty-four hours or so.
I finish buttoning up my purple shirt and make sure I look okay. The black pants are a little long, but they look alright. And after being up for about forty hours, it’s not getting much better.
Satisfied, I head out of the apartment I share with two other med students and start to walk down the street. The restaurant Lucas chose for the date is only about five blocks away, so it’s an easy enough to walk. Plus, the physical exercise should help keep me awake.
I can see the bustling restaurant from a few blocks away. The place is packed, although that isn’t surprising considering it’s a Friday night. All of the tables outside on the patio are full, all of the people enjoying the warm California air. There was also a long line at the door, people in their nice clothes, hoping for a seat.
Thankful Lucas already got us a reservation, I gently push my way past the crowd and head straight for the bar. It takes me a few seconds, but soon I see Lucas sitting at the bar, nursing a beer. He looks as good as ever, like a Greek god or something with huge muscles and a chiseled face. If he wasn’t my best friend, I would consider dating him. But I’m not willing to risk our friendship and, thankfully, he agrees.
“Hey,” I say as I walk up to Lucas.
“Hey,” he responds with a smile. “You look like shit.”
“Thanks. I know. It’s amazing what no sleep will do to a man.”
“Are you up for this?”
I smile at Lucas’s concern. He always was really sensitive to the needs of the people around him. It’s one of the reasons I like him so much.
“Not really. But I think I need this.”
Lucas nods. “Okay. Well, he isn’t here yet, but he should be soon. You wanna drink?”
I shake my head. “Nah. A depressant would be bad for me right now. Maybe a Coke?”
Lucas smiles and waves to the bartender. He orders the drink and soon I have enough sugar racing through me to give me diabetes. It’s just what I need in this moment.
“So tell me about this guy,” I say to Lucas over the din of the crowd.
“What do you want to know?”
Lucas smiles. “Okay. Well, he works at the newspaper with me. But he’s a journalist, not a sales guy like me. He’s out at work, obviously, but he’s not shouting his orientation from the rooftops. He’s cute, but in a dorky way. His hair has a little length and curl to it and he wears glasses that add to the whole nerd vibe. The guy is very nice, willing to help anybody and is more than willing to share a lunch table with anyone. He doesn’t seem to have any really close friends, but he is friendly enough. He’s very good at what he does and he’s single. Has been for a while. Anything else you want to know?”
I shake my head and take a sip of my soda. I can see why Lucas set us up. I always did have a thing for nerds.
“Oh. Here he is now.”
I turn around and see an adorable man walking towards us. He is just as Lucas described, but cuter. Although that might be because his argyle sweater screams nerd. I love nerds.
Lucas stands up from his stool and holds out his hand to the man.
“Good to see you, Joey.”
“You too,” the man says, his voice barely heard over the noise.
“Steve,” Lucas says, motioning for me to come closer. “This is Joey Matheson. Joey, this is Steven Rogers.”
“Nice to meet you, Steve.”
I shake the hand Joey extends to me. Something in my gut tells me this is the man who’s going to change my life forever.

So that’s it for this week. I hope you enjoyed it.

Next week: Steve and Joey continue their date over dinner.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Weekly Prompt-Dentist

Here is this week's free read. I came up with the prompt all by myself, so I hope you enjoy it!

Love Always Beats Fear

Casey sat in the car, holding the door handle with a white-knuckled grip. Why the hell had he allowed himself to be talked into this? He hated going to the dentist. Well, that was putting it mildly. He was terrified. He didn’t know why, but going to the dentist had always done that to him. Maybe it was the drilling. Or the scraping. Or the visions he kept having of the dentist dropping the pick down his throat causing him to choke and die. Or maybe-

“Case, you’re panicking again.”

Casey looked over at his beautiful boyfriend, Trevor, calmly driving their red SUV down the road. The sun coming through the window making his light skin and dark hair glow was almost enough to make Casey forget where he was going. Almost.

“What do you want me, Trev? I’m about to die a horrible death and you want me to sit here and pretend like nothing’s going to happen.”

Trevor let out a little chuckle at his boyfriend’s panic, causing the little dimples in his cheeks to appear.

“Babe, you’re not going to die. It’s just a cleaning. Forty-five minutes tops and we’ll be on the way home.”

“You don’t know that.”

“Case, I’ve been going to the dentist every six months for as long as I can remember. I’m pretty sure I know what I’m talking about.”

Casey and Trevor had been an item for about nine months now. They were both very much in love and had just moved in together. It’s because of that change this whole thing happened. When Trevor’s reminder card came from the dentist a week ago, it started up a conversation about who Casey’s dentist was. This led to Casey having to explain his fear of dentists and how he hadn’t been to one in almost a decade. Which in turn led them to this car ride, straight to the jaws of hell.

“Casey? Baby? You know it’s going to be okay, right?”

Casey just looked over at his boyfriend with wide brown eyes.

Trevor sighed and took his hand off the wheel to clutch his boyfriend’s hand. Silence reigned over the car until Trevor pulled the SUV into the dentist’s parking lot.

As soon as he saw the sign, all of the panic came rushing back to Casey. His breath started to come in fast pants and tears started to well in his eyes. He couldn’t do this. There was no way that he could walk in there. Fear paralyzed him.

But then something strange happened. He started to hear soft words coming through his harsh breaths and the hallow ringing in his ears. He felt soothing touches down his arms and a soft kiss on his temple.

Slowly, Casey calmed down enough to realize Trevor was right there with him, soothing him in every way he could. It made him feel safe. Like not even the dentist from hell could hurt him.

“Casey? Are you okay now,” Trevor asked, clearly noticing his man was calming down.

“I think so.”

“Good. Cause you kinda scared me there.”

“I’m really scared.”

“I know you are. But it’ll all be okay.”

Casey thought about contradicting him, but before the words could come out, he realized something. Trevor had just made him feel safe and secure, despite the panic. Maybe..,

“Trevor, will you go in with me? Like to see the dentist. Maybe hold my hand.”

“Of course I will. I’ll do whatever you want me to do. I know you’re scared about this.”

“More than you can ever know.”

Trevor leaned over and gently kissed his lips. “Whatever you want me to do. You know I’ll do anything for you.”

“I know. And I love you for it.”

The two exchanged one more kiss before getting out of the car. Casey looked up at the building like a criminal stares at a noose. But before he could panic again, Trevor was there, taking his hand and leading him to the door. Despite the fear, Casey couldn’t help but smile. No matter what happened to him in there, as long as he had Trevor everything would be fine. After all, love always beats fear. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Writer's Block is a Terrible Thing

Writer's Block sucks. There is no other way to say it. My YA short story that I started last week has hit a wall of epic proportions. So I won't be finishing that anytime soon.

On the flip side, a new muse has taken residence in my brain. I'm currently writing an adult novella. It's a dark comedy about the Grim Reaper and his search to find love. So for right now, that is going to be my main project until my short story muse comes back.

The goal: to get both the novella and the short story done by the end of the year. That seems like a really tall order even as I say that between the holidays and a few mandatory six day work weeks, but hopefully it will get done. I want to be all set-up to start a new novel in the new year.

So that's where I am. How about all of you?

Monday, November 11, 2013

Weekly Prompt-Dogs

Here is a brand-new free read. Be sure to check out the original prompt and the other responses here. Enjoy!

A Walk in the Park

Music blared in Cal’s ears as he ran down the path. It was a beautiful Saturday morning in his humble town of Jacobsburg, sunny and just the right temperature for a run. Cal didn’t run as much as he used to since he was working full-time at the bank, but it was something he still enjoyed to do.

Cal was about halfway through his run when a black blur suddenly darted in front of Cal’s feet. Dodging to the side, Cal started to slow down, narrowly missing the blur.

Annoyed, Cal turned to see what ruined his run. It was a dog, black and small. It looked like a mutt, but Cal had to admit that he was adorable with a bright red ball stuck in his mouth.

“Sorry,” Cal heard through his headphones. Taking the buds out of his ears, Cal turned to face whoever was speaking to him.

Cal’s breath caught as he caught a glimpse of the man running towards the adorable dog. The man was tall, with hinting of toned bronze muscles gleaming under his T-shirt and gym shorts. His brown hair was a little long, but it only made him look younger and much more attractive in Cal’s eyes.

“Hey, are you okay,” the cute guy said.

Cal shook his head, trying to snap out of his preoccupation. “Oh, yeah. Sorry.”

“It’s okay. I was a little worried that you got hurt when Sparky here got away from me.”


“Yeah, my dog,” the man clarified as he ruffled the fur on Sparky’s head. “He’s usually really good about staying with me, even when we play fetch, but he’s a little ADHD. Gets distracted easy.”

Cal couldn’t help but laugh at that. “No. I wasn’t hurt by your ADHD dog.”

The man smiled back. “Good. I’m glad. Oh, I’m Neal, by the way.”

“Calvin. But everyone calls me Cal.”

Neal stood up and shook hands with him. “Nice to meet you.”

There was an awkward moment of silence as the two men stared at each other. Cal watched Neal shuffle his feet, as if he were waiting for something. Maybe Cal wasn’t the only one attracted here. After all, he did offer his name. Well, there was only one way to find out.

“Hey, um. I’m sorry if I’m out of line here,” Cal started, happy that he didn’t sound too nervous. “But would you like to go grab a coffee or something?”

Neal’s smile was as bright as the sun. “Yes. I would like that very much. There’s a cafĂ© down the street with some outdoor tables. That way Sparky can come with no problems. As long as you’re good with that.”

“Absolutely,” Cal agreed, bending down to pat the dog on the head. He got a happy bark and a tail wag for his efforts.

“I think he likes you.”

“Well, that’s good. Because I like him too. I like his owner too.”

Neal blushed. “Shall we go get that coffee?”

“Lead on.”

Neal pulled a leash out of his pocket, clipping it to Sparky’s bright red collar, before coming and standing next to Cal.

“I am reading this right. This is a date, right?”

“I hope so.”

Neal blushed again. “Good. Although I have to admit that when I got Sparky from the shelter two months ago I never would have thought that he would get me dates. I just wanted someone to come home to at the end of the work day.”

“Well, who knows? Maybe Sparky just helped you find a human you can come home to at the end of the day.”

“Aren’t you rushing things? We haven’t even had coffee yet.”

“True. But you never know where the path will lead.”

Scruffy let out a bark in agreement. Cal and Neal laughed as they headed down the walkway to a bright-looking future.

A Huge Mistake

It has just been brought to my attention that I missed Greedy Bug Book Reviews in my End of Tour Thank Yous. Please allow me to extend my deepest regret to Mr. A-H and all of the wonderful people at Greedy Bug. It was an oversight on my part and I feel horrible about it. The post has been adjusted to include ALL of the names. Greedy Bug is a great source for reviews and I encourage all of my readers to check them out here. Again, I apologize for this oversight.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

A New Story

Well, I'm still trying to get used to life after vacation. I had a wonderful time away from everything, but I'm slowly forcing myself to ease back into real life. The fact that I have to work tomorrow should help easy that transition.

As for my writing, I'm starting to get back into that too. Now that Journey to Xibalta is done, I've started a new project. I just started a new YA short story. It's about a boy experiencing his first summer love. Currently, the story is called The First Taste of Summer Love. I'm not thrilled with the title and might change it later, but that's what it is now. Who knows, maybe it will even grow on me. Right now, I'm about 2,000 words in to the story. I suspect it will be about 10,000 words when all said and done. Hopefully, I will have the first draft done by this time next week. Maybe by then I will have the ambition to start another novel. But for right now, I'm enjoying this little side project.

So that's my life. How's everyone else? Let me know. And happy Friday everyone!


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

THE END of the Blog Tour

Well, this is the last post for The Sacrifices We Make blog tour. I hope that everyone has enjoyed it. I know that I have. I want to thank everyone who allowed me to ramble on their blogs. Juan, Cody, Skylar, Madison and Jeff over at True Colorz, Jana, Andy, Lucy from Hearts on Fire Reviews, Madison, Mr. A-H and all the great people at Greedy Bug Book Reviews, Nessa for letting me take over Harmony Ink's FB page, Lisa from The Novel Approach, Jamie from Boys on the Brink, Chris, Jay from Joyfully Jay, JP and Brynn: THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH!!!! I really appreciate you all taking time to host a brand-new author. I hope that everyone enjoyed it just as much as I did.
And to you, my readers: THANK YOU!!!! I've been blown away by the amazing response I've gotten. All of the reviews and support mean so much to me. I can only hope that I will continue to keep writing stories worthy of all the love and support.
Now just because the blog tour is over doesn't mean that I will be dropping off the face of the Earth. I'm always more than happy to talk with everyone. All of my contact information is listed under the Contact Me page on the right sidebar. Just pick your preferred medium and contact me. Plus, you can always find out what's going on with me right here on my blog.
So that's the end. Please feel free to comment on the blog tour below. And thank you all once again for making this such a great blog tour!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Blog Tour Spot #16

Today I'm over at Brynn Stein's blog talking about my writing journey. Check it outhere.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Update on Writing and Life

Hello Everyone!
    Wow! It's been awhile since I checked in, but I thought I would update everyone on what's been going on. First of all, Journey to Xibalta is FINISHED. That's right. At over 72,000 words it is my longest novel to date and it's one I am very proud of. I think it's a great story. And since it is only 1 of 3, the story isn't even halfway done yet. (But it's as done as it will get for now;) The story has been submitted to Harmony Ink, so now I just have to wait.
     In other news, I am on vacation. I'm leaving for Wisconsin soon. I have tickets to see my beloved Packers take on the Chicago Bears (who suck) on Monday Night Football. So wish me luck. But just so everyone knows, there will be NO free read this week since I will be up there. But don't worry I will have one for you in two weeks time.
      I also hope everyone has been enjoying the Sacrifices blog tour. It's starting to wind down. The last giveaway ends on Saturday so get over to Joyfully Jay and enter. (The link is under the giveaway page.) My last guest post is on Monday over at Brynn Stein's blog and my last post is here on Tuesday. So don't forget to check those out.
    Whew! Well, I think that's everything. I'm going to watch a movie. Have a great weekend all!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Blog Tour Spot #15

Happy Halloween everyone! Today I'm over on JP Barnaby's blog with a special Halloween-related posts. I'm talking all about masks, not the plastic ones, but the ones we use to protect ourselves. Check it out here.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Blog Tour Spot #14

Today I'm over at the fabulous Joyfully Jay blog talking about falling in love with characters. This is also your last chance to enter a giveaway for one free ebook of "The Sacrifices We Make"! Check it out here.