Monday, April 28, 2014

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 20

Happy Monday everyone! I hop you all enjoy this latest installment in The Saga of Steve and Joey!

Part 20
“You’re driving too fast,” I yell from the backseat.
“Babe, I’m driving fifteen miles below the speed limit. If I go any slower these drivers are going to run us off the road.”
“They wouldn’t dare.”
Steve glares at me from the driver’s seat using the rearview mirror.
“Fine,” I huff in annoyance. “Just do me a favor and watch the road!”
Steve shakes his head, but turns his gaze back to the road.
Trying to ignore the dangers of driving down a major road, I look down at the little bundle sitting next to me. Aiden is still sleeping peacefully in his car seat, blissfully unaware of the possible death trap we are currently sitting in.
I close my eyes and lean my head back on the head rest. I haven’t really slept much in the last few days and it’s starting to take its toll. Which is perfect, cause we’re taking a newborn home for the first time.
“Are you okay back there?”
I sigh. “Yeah. Just tired. And a little stressed.”
Steve fondly shakes his head at me. “I tried to tell you to get some sleep.”
“I know, but I couldn’t. And you know it.”
“Yeah. But you need to learn to relax a little. Aiden isn’t even a week old. How are you going to handle him in a month? Or a year?”
Part of me wants to snap that I know I’m on the road to self-destruction and he doesn’t need to point that out, but I’m just too tired.
“I know, Steve. I just…I’m handling this the best way I can.”
“I get that. I’m just worried about you.”
I want to tell him that I’m worried too, but I just stare down at Aiden. The last few days have been a whirlwind as we’ve gotten everything ready. I hadn’t slept or eaten the way I usually do since Margie called me at work telling me about Aiden for the first time. I actually expected Steve to say something a lot sooner, seeing as he’s a doctor and everything. But he just watched me, trying to encourage me to take an extra nap or eat a little more dinner.
The car is silent as we finish the trip home. I sigh as Steve pulls the car into the driveway and cuts the engine. Very carefully, I unhook the car seat and pop the handle on Aiden’s carrier. I love how the car seat became a carrier so I don’t have to wake Aiden.
Steve opens the door for me and I hand our son out to him. Steve smiles as he holds Aiden, looking down at his smiling face. Getting out of the car, I walk up to Steve and kiss him on the lips.
“I love you,” I whisper.
“Love you too. Now let’s get our son inside.”
Together, we walk up to the house. I get out my keys and open the door for Steve, since he’s still holding the baby.
We drop our stuff by the door before taking Aiden upstairs to the nursery. We didn’t really get a ton of time to get the room ready since we weren’t sure we were defiantly getting a baby. The walls are painted a light green, complimenting all of the furniture, which is made of a dark brown wood. We just bought most of the things in this room yesterday so everything is shiny and new. Just like our baby boy.
I watch as Steve gently moves the baby from the carrier to the crib. Aiden barely fusses, adjusting to his new bed without waking up.
“How did you do that,” I whisper.
Steve turns around and shoots me a quick smile before turning his gaze back to Aiden.
“I have a lot of practice moving babies. More than you, anyway.”
“Does your doctor training lend itself to everything,” I ask, walking up to him.
“No. But a lot does.”
I don’t respond, choosing to watch Aiden instead. Steve gives me a kiss on the temple before walking out of my sight. I normally would ask him where I’m going, but I’m too focused on Aiden sleeping. He’s just so perfect.
I’m watching my son when something gently pushes into the back of my knees. I turn to see Steve there, with the rocking chair we bought for the room. Shooting him a grateful smile, I sit down and continue to keep vigil over Aiden.
“I think everything’s perfect now,” Steve says.
I nod, but I can’t force any words out, before my eyes start to close. Steve is right; everything really is perfect now. That is my last thought before I slip into slumber.

And there’s Part 20! I hope everyone enjoyed it. Check back next week for the next part in their saga.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thursday Update-4/24/14

Hello everyone and Happy Thursday! I hope everyone is having a great week. I have. Here's my weekly update for this week.

Well, the good news for the week is that I was a lot more productive this week than last week. I am still working really hard on the rewrites for MWMGML, but I feel like I am almost finished. It should only take me a few more weeks before I can resubmit! Yeah!

Once MWMGML is done, I plan on working some more on Escape. I really love this one and I think it's going to be something special. But it's kind of been pushed aside in favor of getting MWMGML done. I will also be brushing off Journey to Xibalta and getting that ready for another shot at publication.

Right now, I'm looking at what I want to do in relation to my two week vacation I have coming up in June. While I will be traveling for some of it, I hope to get a lot of work done when I'm not. So my plan is to have MWMGML done by the middle of May, so I can rework Xibalta and continue Escape. I am hoping to have Xibalta done completely and the first draft of Escape done by the end of my vacation. That's the goal.

Still nothing new to report on Death or A Big, Beautiful Love. But I should have some new on at least one of them by next week. *fingers crossed*

I think that's it for this week. See you guys on Monday for a new Steve and Joey. Until then...


Monday, April 21, 2014

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 19

Part 19
It’s so surreal, looking our new son through the glass in the nursery. It doesn’t seem possible that he’s ours. All of the paperwork, the drama, the hard work has led to the tiny little being. And yet, despite my shock, it seems so right. Standing here, watching my son, my arms wrapped around Joey who’s watching Aiden with tears in his eyes.
Now I have seen a lot of babies in my time as a doctor, but none of them compares to Aiden. His perfect little face, eyes closed in sleep, seems to glow. A weird light that seems to draw my eye to him and only him.
“Can you believe he’s ours,” Joey whispers, breaking into my thoughts.
“No. I can’t believe all of that work led to him.”
Joey looks up at me from his place under my arm. “You’re not regretting this, are you?”
I smile. “How can you ask that? You don’t actually think I’m backing out now, do you?”
“No. Not really.”
“Good. Because even though I’m having a hard time believing this isn’t just some weird dream I’ll wake up from, I couldn’t be happier.”
Joey smiles up at me and curls back into my arm. Our focus goes back to watching our son sleeping peacefully.
“Why Aiden,” I ask after a minute.
“Aiden. We never talked about names. And you just came up with Aiden.”
“Do you hate it,” Joey asks fearfully.
“No. Actually I love it. I’m just curious as to why.”
“I don’t know. I just looked at him and it came out. So you don’t hate the name?”
“No. And if we get the chance, I think we should name him Aiden.”
Joey’s smile was enough of an answer for me.
“Hey, you guys.”
I turn to see Margie coming towards us. Joey pulls out of my embrace and we turn to face her head on.
“How are you two doing?”
“We want him,” Joey says without preamble.
Margie’s smile is answer enough for me. I reach over and grab Joey’s hand.
“I thought you might say that,” Margie replies. “I’ve started the paperwork to get him into your care. He won’t be able to leave for another day at least, but I should have everything settled by then. It will also give you some time to get your house ready for a baby.”
“How can we make him ours,” Joey asks, as if he didn’t hear anything Margie just said. “Forever.”
“Well, there are no parental rights, so once we get the foster paperwork done, you can apply for adoption. It might take a little while, but if everything goes right, he should be yours by this time next year.”
Joey looks up at me and smiles the brightest smile. “That would be wonderful.”
I bend down and kiss him gently on the lips. “It would be perfect.”
“Wonderful,” Margie says, shooting us a smile. “And I’ll help you through everything I’m just glad the little guy has a great home to go to.”
I smile at that.
“Aiden,” Joey says abruptly, turning to Margie.
“What,” Margie asks, clearly confused.
“I want to name our son, Aiden. Can we do that?”
“I’ll make it happen,” Margie says with a smile. “Congratulations.”
“Thank you,” I say, gently kissing Joey again.
Margie leaves us in peace and we turn to watch our son once more.
“We should go,” I say after a little while. “We have to get baby stuff if we’re going to bring him home.”
“I know,” Joey whispers. “But can we stay just a little bit longer?”
I drop a kiss on top of his head.
“As long as you want.”

And so ends Part 19! Next week we’ll see Aiden come home with his new parents. Until then, have a great week.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Thursday Update-4/17/14

Hello everyone! I hope you've all had a great week so far. My week has been beyond crazy and because of it I don't really have too much to report. I spent all day yesterday in New York City. I did a couple of things when I was there, but I spent a good number of hours in a giant foodie store called Eataly. For the record, I am not a foodie and I was bored out of my mind, but my fiancee was happy. Still, I didn't get much writing done. Oh, well. I guess we can't be productive all the time. Anyway, here's what I did this week:

So when I was on the bus going to New York, I didn't work on my laptop, but I did do some outlining. I now have basic outlines for my Noxium series. I also left the door open for a second series to follow the events in the original trilogy. Now I really need more time.

And that was about it. Like I said, not very productive. Oh, but I forgot. I just got a BRAND-NEW  LAPTOP!!!!!! Yeah. I am still getting used to everything, but we all know how much fun new toys can be. Am I right?

So that's about it. I should have more information for everyone next week. Until then...


Monday, April 14, 2014

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 18

Hello everyone! Happy Free Read Monday! Here's the next part of The Saga of Steve and Joey. Enjoy!

Part 18
I sigh and rub at my eyes. Damn, I’ve been staring at the screen for way too long. This story on the latest city council meeting is brutal to write. The information is dry and boring. After all, what normal reader wants to read about the budget? But, somehow, I have to report it in an interesting manner in the hopes someone would read it.  The only upshot is I think it’s finally done. I would just have to do a quick edit before sending it off.
I’m about halfway through when my cell phone rings. I, still reading, blindly reach over and accept the call without looking at the display. It’s probably Steve anyway. I am late leaving…
“Hello,” I say, distracted, wanting to get home.
“It’s Margie.”
My heart stops as I hear the voice of our social worker. I stop staring at the screen and lean back in my chair. It’s been almost two months since Steve and I finished the paperwork to be foster parents. Could this be the end of the waiting?
“I think we may have found a baby for you and Steve.”
My eyes fill with tears as I lift a hand to my mouth. Could this be happening? Could today actually be the day I become a father?
“We would need you both to come down to the hospital,” Margie continues. “I can explain the entire situation there.”
“Have you called Steve,” I ask, still trying to get my tears under control.
“No, I thought you might want to do that.”
“We’ll be there in twenty.”
I barely wait for a response before hanging up the phone and dialing Steve. Unable to focus on work, I send in my article as the phone rings. It should be relatively typo-free anyway.
That done, I power down my computer and grab my coat just as Steve picks up.
“Hey. You’re late. On your way home?”
“Margie called,” I say, not having the patience for small talk. “She says they have a baby for us.”
At first, Steve doesn’t say anything. The only thing I hear is a soft gasp coming through the speaker.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes. She said we need to meet her at the hospital. Can you meet me there?”
“I’m on my way,” Steve says. I can hear rustling on the other end and I know he’s getting his stuff. “Are you okay?”
“I…I don’t even know. I think I may be in shock.”
“Well, then be careful. I know it’s a short drive, but be careful.”
“I will. I love you.”
“Love you too. See you in a bit. I’ll meet you in the lobby.”
“Kay. Bye.”
I make it to the car in record time and start up the engine. I am really careful driving, making sure to focus on the road and not crashing.
It feels like an eternity by the time I park the car in the parking garage and make my way inside. I don’t see Steve, but he has a longer way to go so that doesn’t shock me. I feel like an idiot standing in the lobby. There aren’t too many people there in the small sitting area, so me standing the middle of the space is making me feel awkward. But I don’t know where to go. I don’t even know where Margie is…
I couldn’t help but breathe a sigh of relief as Margie comes over, dressed in jeans and a suit jacket.
“How are you,” she says smiling.
“I don’t know.”
“I know. This is a bit of a shock. But it will all be fine.”
“You have a baby. For us.”
Margie gives me a small smile. “Yes. A newborn baby boy. He was abandoned at a fire house.”
“Just like that,” I ask, shocked.
“Yes. It’s actually not so bad. Safe haven rules say any parents can give up their child.”
“But doesn’t that mean they can take him back?”
“No. If you use the safe haven law, you give up all rights. So he is a ward of the state.”
I look up and see Steve running towards me. I open my arms as he runs into me, holding me tight. Squeezing him back, I sigh. Having him here already makes me feel better.
“Nice to see you Steve,” Margie says.
“What’s going on? Joey said you have a baby for us?”
“Yes. A baby boy was abandoned outside a fire house. He falls under the safe haven laws so he is a ward of the state.”
“Is he healthy,” Steve asks, his medical training coming to the forefront.
“Relatively. He was abandoned when he was only a few hours old, but it seems to have been a healthy birth. He was a little chilled so the doctors want to keep him for a day or two. But there’s no reason to think he won’t be a perfectly healthy child.”
“Does he have a name?”
“Not yet. But maybe you can have a say in that,” Margie says, a twinkle in her eye.
“Can we see him,” I ask, pushing off Steve’s chest a little.
“Of course,” Margie says with a smile. “Come on.”
I clutch Steve’s hand as we head up to the third floor of the hospital. I hear Steve saying hi to a couple people as we pass by, but I’m too focused on what’s waiting for us.
Finally, we reach the nursery area. Margie shows us to an area where we put on soft, disposable robes that cover our clothes.
Finally, we’re led into a small room off the nursery where there’s a rocking chair and some other pieces of furniture.
Margie goes to get a nurse so the baby can be brought to us.
I, a little shaky on my legs, sit in the chair.
“Are you okay,” Steve whispers.
“I don’t know. I…I can’t believe there’s a baby here who could be ours.”
Steve comes over and kisses the top of my head. “I know. But this is what we want, right? A baby to call our own.”
“Yeah. More than anything. I just can’t wrap my head around it.”
Steve opens his mouth to respond, but the door opens behind him, interrupting. A large woman in scrubs walks in, a baby bundle in her arms.
I can’t breathe as she comes up and places the small bundle in my arms. My first reaction is to panic. I’ve never held a baby before.
But as soon as I look into the baby’s face, I relax. He must be the cutest baby in the history of the world. He is pale white with chubby little cheeks that I just want to rub. He squirms a little in my embrace, but soon relaxes into my arms.
And in that moment, I know. This is MY son. The child I am going to raise with Steve. The missing piece of my family.
“Hello Aiden.”

And there’s Part 18. I’m hoping to have the next part for you guys by next week, but it might not happen because of the holiday. But regardless, there will be a new story on the 28th. Have a good week everyone!  

Friday, April 11, 2014

USA Today!!!

Hello everyone! Exciting news. Jessie Potts, a contributor for USA Today, has written an article about Grand Adventures. I'm featuring in there with the other authors talking about the anthology, as well as TJ and Eric, of course. Read the full article here!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Thursday Update-4/10/14

Hello everyone! I hope you all have had a great week! Here's what's been going on with me:

I haven't had the most productive week. With the Easter holiday fast approaching, I'm losing a lot of writing time. But I still managed to do some things.

I'm almost done with the rewrites for MWMGML. However, next week I'm spending my off days in NYC so I don't know how much work I'll get done. Still I'm hoping to finish that by the end of May.

Death-Meet Love and Happiness is progressing. While it has not formally moved into the editing stage yet, I have filled out the paperwork for the cover. Unlike Sacrifices, I have no idea what I want the cover to look like so I'm really excited to see what they come up with.

On a more depressing note, I've given up on The Phoenix. It just wasn't working and with the anthology deadline so close, I'm just shutting the door on it. Maybe I'll come back to it at another time, but for right now, it's going in the rejected pile.

I managed to do a little work on Escape. I really like how this one is coming along. I think this will be my next big project after I finish MWMGML.

Still waiting for news on A Big, Beautiful Love.

I think that's about it for this week. I may or may not have an update for you guys next week. I just don't think I'll be able to get much writing done this coming week. But if anything exciting happens, I'll let you guys know. Have a great week everyone!


Monday, April 7, 2014

The Saga of Steve and Joey-Part 17

Hello all! I hope everyone has a great weekend. And because it's Monday (and everyone needs this on Monday) here's the next part of The Saga of Steve and Joey. I know it's long overdue since last week was the release of Grand Adventures, but I hope it's worth the wait. Enjoy!

Part 17

I exhale as I shut the front door behind Margie, our social worker. I appreciate the effort the Department of Children and Families puts into making sure someone is fit to foster, but, geez, I am getting tired of these home visits.
Walking back into the living room, I see Joey going over some of the papers from Margie. They’re old, explaining some of the details for the process. He must have read that thing a million times, so I don’t quite know why he’s still looking at it. He must have it memorized by now.
“Joey,” I whisper as I walk into the room, not wanting to startle him.
At first he doesn’t react, but then he looks up at me with wide eyes.
“What,” I ask.
“We’re done.”
I walk over and sit next to him on the couch. Holding my arm out, I silently encourage Joey to cuddle up, which he does. He feels a little cold, so I grab the blanket off the back of the couch and wrap it around him.
“We’re done,” he whispers again.
“Yeah. Yeah, we are.”
It has taken us almost a year, but all of the steps were finally done for us to become foster parents. In the end, Joey and I decided we would go to DCFS and file to become foster parents rather than going to an adoption agency.  Not only is it much cheaper, we felt that since our state allows LGBT families to adopt we would have better luck than going with some of the adoption agencies around us. Like the Catholic one. The other plus was we didn’t have to try and interview with prospective moms. I knew Joey wouldn’t like that. And it was more in line with the help Joey wanted to provide. We’d made it clear to Margie that we wanted a child we could then adopt and she understood.
I can’t say I regret the decision, but it also took us a little longer to do because of the government red tape. I knew the last few months were hard on Joey, who wanted a baby yesterday. But now it’s done. Margie just took the last of the paperwork with her. Once it was processed, we could foster any child in the system.
“When do you think we’re going to get our baby?”
“I don’t know. But we’ve waited this long, right?”
Joey slowly nods, curling into my little bit more. At first, I just think he wants a little comfort, but a little hitch of his breath tells me something is wrong.
“Joey, baby? What’s wrong?”
Joey sniffles, trying to hold back the tears that threaten to fall. “I just…I want a baby so bad. And it’s taken so long to get here. And now we have to wait some more.”
“I know, baby. This hasn’t been easy, but don’t you think it will all be worth it when we get him or her in our arms.”
“I don’t even know anymore.”
“Oh, yes, you do. Joey, this baby has been all you’ve thought about for the last year. You’ve obsessed over every detail on every form Margie sent us. And that department makes the medical profession look lax when it comes to paperwork. Every other day you’re showing me pictures of kids who need to be adopted. I don’t know what child we’re going to get, but he already has your heart.”
“I guess. It’s just been a really long year.”
I sigh. He’s right there. “I know, babe. But we’re done now. And soon we’re going to be parents.”
“Do you think we’ll be good parents?”
I chuckle. “Yeah, I think we’ll be okay.”
“I’m scared we won’t be.”
I gently kiss the top of his head. “That’s normal for all parents. Believe me, I see enough of them in my practice. But we will be fine.”
“How can you be so calm about this? Aren’t you scared?”
I shrug. “Maybe a little. But anyone who has worked as hard as you have to get a baby, will be a great parent, believe me.”
“I hope you’re right.”
“Trust me, Joey. We’ll be fine. And soon enough, we’ll have a child of our own.”
Joey just holds me a little tighter.
But as great as it feels to have Joey in my arms, I can’t help but think about how amazing it will be when there’s a third person in our embrace. Soon…

And that was Part 17! When will Steve and Joey get their baby? Find out next week in Part 18. See you all then!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Thursday Update-4/3/14

Hello everyone and Happy Thursday! It's been a crazy week for me, so let's get right to the details.

The biggest news I have for this week is the release of When Friendship Becomes More as part of the Grand Adventures anthology. It didn't take long for the anthology to be an official BESTSELLER!!! The book has peaked at #2 at Amazon, #1 at DSP and #17 at AllRomance Ebooks. I even got this awesome graphic:

It's all very exciting! DSP is also offering T-shirts and prints to further help TJ and Eric. Check out all of the merchandise here.   

In other news, most of my week has been spent working on the rewrites from MWMGML. It's a lot of work, but so far so good. It will probably take me a little while until its done, but I think it will a better story.

I don't really have anything new to report on anything else. Most of my week has been consumed with the release and MWMGML. I'm hoping to have some more news for everyone next week.

I think that's it. The Saga of Steve and Joey will be back next week, so be sure to check back on Monday. Have a great weekend everyone!


Tuesday, April 1, 2014


Thank you so much everyone! Grand Adventures is a huge bestseller! It is currently #1 on Dreamspinner, #3 on Amazon and I got this in my inbox this morning. Thank you so much for helping out TJ and Eric in such a huge way.