Progressive NYE Dinner: An Appetizer Story with Jamie and Gavin

Hi! Welcome to the NYE progressive dinner!

This appetizer is coming to you from the guys in Baltimore. Jamie and Gavin have been invited to ring in the New Year with Eli and Quinn, but before they head out, they need an appetizer. I hope you enjoy this taste of their life…and the recipe that follows.

BadAttitude300

Jamie settled back in the recliner with his KZ soda and unmuted the TV for the third quarter of the Peach Bowl. He’d had other plans during half time—and hopefully the rest of the game, but his boyfriend was busy. There was another thunk and curse from the kitchen. He kicked the volume up another notch and drank his soda. Didn’t sound like Gavin was going to be less busy any time soon. Guess Jamie’s dick wasn’t getting sucked before they had to leave for Quinn’s.

The flatscreen was almost the size of Jamie’s mattress at his place and the recliner so good to sink into, it might as well have been a furniture porn star. Hell, it was big enough for two in plenty of interesting combinations. Jamie wasn’t ready to start an interior design business, but the big plush recliner didn’t exactly go with the sleek furniture in the rest of the place. The suspicion that the recliner and big TV had been added with Jamie’s company in mind filled him with equal parts affection and caution. He hadn’t asked for it. Or for the drawer in the bedroom that remained conspicuously empty and often ajar. And he certainly hadn’t asked for advice from a nosy club rat who pointed out that maintaining two addresses was a total waste, especially if they were spending part of almost every night in the same bed.

But even though Gavin never said anything about it, Jamie couldn’t see the guy giving up views of the harbor and twenty-four hour security for his Bentley and the fully tiled rain and steam shower for Jamie’s little two bedroom in Dudalk, and Jamie probably couldn’t afford even the maintenance fees on this place. He was nobody’s kept boy.

Annabelle huffed out a sigh from her bed between the couch and recliner. Yeah. A nap would probably be good. He had third watch. Peak drunk asshole hour on Amateur Night. As he slitted his eyes all hell broke loose in the kitchen.

Continue reading “Progressive NYE Dinner: An Appetizer Story with Jamie and Gavin”

Looking Ahead: Bad 6 (Thank You)

A great big thank you to everyone who made my slutting around to promote Bad Behavior’s release so much fun. I am loving hearing from readers about the book and their thoughts on the future for the guys in Baltimore. I couldn’t wrap up Bad Behavior until I had a little glimpse of what would be coming next, so I started a new book, which is in a holding pattern while I finish up something else.

To say thank you, or maybe to torment you, I’m not sure which it is, I have a look at that first scene for you here.

Look, there’s even a picture I took that inspired the opening scene.    car show

Bad in Baltimore 6

The second week of August was a great time to stand out on an open field with hundreds of shining steel heat reflectors. In Alaska maybe. But in Timonium, Maryland, way too fucking far from any place to catch a decent breeze, it was hot as fuck.

Scott didn’t know if talking about it made it any less nasty, but he repeated it out loud to Jamie as they studied the ‘65 Ford Galaxie Scott had his eye on.

“And exactly how hot is fuck ya think?” Jamie said, leaning in as he inspected the connections on the plugs.

“Don’t know about you but for me, depends on how tight his ass is,” Scott muttered, low enough so only Jamie could hear. They’d waited until the owner had gone to lunch, not wanting to show too much interest, but some things didn’t mix with the car show crowd. Openly gay guys were high up on that list.

Continue reading “Looking Ahead: Bad 6 (Thank You)”

Good Questions on Bad Behavior

I’ve recGood questioneived some cool questions from readers about Beach and Tai’s back stories so I’m answering them here.

A lot of times I need to know way more about the character than ever makes it into a book. Seriously, do you need to know what their grades were? SAT scores? Sometimes it comes up, sometimes the character throws me for a loop. What’s really cool is when the character does or says something that turns out to be really useful or important later on. I want to dig inside my brain and figure out how that works. Oooo. I have a crowbar and a flashlight. That should work!

Tai

People asked me about his family and why he didn’t have contact with the Samoan side. His mom didn’t get along with her mom and went to school at USC where she met his dad. When she got pregnant, his dad married her and left school to get work to support his family. His father’s family (mom and aunts) came after the second trimester and stayed through the birth. Kara, Tai’s mom, felt smothered. After Tai’s dad was killed in a car accident, she was afraid that his family would push her into moving to Samoa or giving them the baby so she went home to Baltimore. She cut off contact with Tai’s father’s family because she was afraid of losing her child who was her connection to the husband she lost.

Beach and ghosts

Some people might consider this spoilery. I don’t think there are big secrets in it, but you might want to skip it if you haven’t read it already.

Beach’s dad left the country when Beach was ten. This was before 9/11 and it was much easier for Beach’s dad to slip in and out of the country. It came to me from Beach’s point of view that he felt like some places were haunted because he felt like people were watching, that he wasn’t alone. I realized later his dad had snuck back a few times and checked in on him. Of course, Beach also has a passion for Southern Gothic style stories so he wants to believe in them.

Got anymore questions for me?

Bad Behavior Birthday

I am so excited to finally be able to share this book with everyone. I loved the story and I love the characters.

I loved being able to hang out with all my old friends–er, characters–in Baltimore.

I’ll be hanging around all day so feel free to comment or ask about the book or anything writing related. I know Beach and Tai would both love to give you a piece of their minds.

Tomorrow I’ll put up a little piece from the Baltimore book I’ll be working on next–as soon as I get Kieran and Theo to a happily ever after.

Awkward Flirting or Can a Drug Test Turn Into Sexual Tension? Day 10

Tai and Beach meet and have anonymous sex in the bathroom of a bar. Neither expects to meet again the next day as probation officer and probie. The ensuing drug test is a loaded (ahem) situation.

Read the excerpt and follow the directions for the rafflecopter giveaway to be entered to win a $25 gift card to the e-retailer of your choice (assuming I can buy an emailable gift card there.)

The heat in his gut drove Tai to his feet. He glanced down at his hands on the desk, knowing he had slapped them there, but only from the sting in his palms, the echo of the sound. He stared a little longer, taking a deep breath for control, battling the instinctive desire to put his hand on Beauchamp’s neck and remind him where the power really rested and do it in a way that had nothing to do with supervising a client. Of course, if Tai allowed himself such an extreme reaction over the slightest challenge, Beauchamp was the one in charge. He peered down. The amiable expression on Beach’s—Beauchamp’s face didn’t change at all. But his gaze made a leisurely journey from Tai’s thighs to his face before he raised his brows.

“According to the conditions of your pretrial probation, you are to remain out of bars.”

“But I didn’t have a drink of anything…fun.” Beauchamp’s eyes focused on Tai’s crotch. “Didn’t my lovely ankle jewelry tell you that?”

Tai glanced overagain at the monitor, though he already knew the answer.

“Where’s Bob? Not that it isn’t charming to run into you again, albeit under these circumstances, but I thought I was working with Bob.”

Bob? “Officer Meade is not working with this department right now.”

“Now that is a shame. We were getting along so well.”

Tai had been about to resume his seatsit down again, but the phrasing made him wonder if Beauchamp hadn’t been getting more from Bob than supervision.

“Drug test. Let’s go.” Tai grabbed a sample kit from the cabinet and started for the door. Having to piss under supervision like a toddler was humiliating enough to take the starch out of most of the assholes Tai dealt with. But as Beauchamp pushed open the men’s room door, Tai realized how epically this was going to backfire. He busied himself in tugging on his gloves, avoiding the memory of his last trip to the men’s room with Beauchamp.

Beauchamp stepped up to a urinal and grinned at Tai. “Hold it for me?”

“Excuse me?” Tai stepped away from where he was blocking the door.

“My cane.” Beauchamp held it out. His tongue caught in his teeth for an instant before he added, “Well, it’s either my cane, the cup or my cock, but I was trying to keep things professional.”
Tai snatched the cane and handed over the sample cup. Beauchamp faced him as he unzipped. Tai tried to glance away, but the action made him appear more pathetic.
Beach shrugged. “Not like you haven’t seen it.”

“Get on with it.”

It was only a small hitch in Beauchamp’s breath, but in the tiled room it echoed. And the echo reverberated right to Tai’s balls. Tucking the cane under an arm, he kept an eye on the mirror set up to make sure the probie couldn’t sub out from a tube secreted somewhere and waited.
When a minute passed, Tai leaned back against the doorframe. “Shy bladder?”

“Not as a rule.” The response was sharp. “Uh.” There were a few variations on that sound before Beauchamp said, “Tell me what happened to Bob.”

“It’s none of your business.” Tai pushed away from the wall and turned on one of the faucets. “Some inspiration.”

“Yeah, thanks.” Beauchamp’s voice was polished, smooth as silk with a hint of the Carolinas in it and an ever-stronger promise of a laugh waiting to happen.

“Relax and concentrate.”

“Not helping.”

Tai made a living reading truth, fear or desperation in people’s voices, their faces, their body language. Right now Beauchamp was projecting all three. And that came overlaid with the awareness Tai should never have of a client. To know he liked it hard and dirty with a commanding voice in his ear.

The sooner this was over with, the sooner Tai could be in Sutton’s office, passing Beauchamp onto another P.O. That was what he told himself, but it was only half the truth as he took a step to put himself close enough to growl into Beauchamp’s ear, “Do it. Now.”

Question: What does Tai hold for Beach during the test? Don’t giveaway the answer in the comments!

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Songs In My Head–Beach and Tai–Day 7

(This was supposed to happen yesterday, but if you go look at my tweet stream, we had a minor medical emergency at the homestead.)

We writers do like our playlists. I know a book is ready to be written when I start putting together a playlist, when I hear a song and think OMG that is so him/them!. For the most part, I listen to the play list in the car or shower. Sometimes, I have a special playlist for a particular scene. I guess may be different for me is that I rarely listen to my playlist when I’m putting the words on the paper. I mostly listen to them in the car or shower. (Thank the writing gods for voice memos and aquanotes). For writing, I like ambient sounds, like rain or even typewriter clicks. I used to write to music, but maybe my brain is too old now to multitask words. Sometimes I’ll still haul out something that is pure feels, something I know so well I don’t hear the words anymore and play that to get the feels down on the paper.

One of my favorite things about songs and stories is when other people say “Hey, this song reminded me of your character/book.” It’s such a cool way to learn how other people see the characters and the story. The Lera Lynn version of TV on the Radio’s “Wolf Like Me” that was such an awesome addition to Bad Behavior’s playlist was actually recommended by a critique partner early on. It was a great fit for thinking while driving.

So anyway, this giveaway is a $10 itunes or Amazon gift card so you can get some music of your own. And feel free to leave a comment here about music that inspires you. I’m always looking for the next perfect song.

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I Want It Now! (Day 5 of Beach and Tai)

One of the things about Beach’s personality is that he’s a giant Id walking around. He wants and he sees no consequence to having what he wants right now. One of the hardest things in the world for me to wait for is book release day. Not just mine, but books in series or by authors I love. Those greatly anticipated dates I can rattle off like my own birthday.

Wouldn’t it be cool to not have to wait? Here’s a chance to win an early copy of Bad Behavior! Ask me a question or even better, ask one of my characters a question because they are WAY more interesting than I am, in the comments (about the Baltimore books or any of my books, or about writing) and you could have the ebook in your hands five days before the rest of the world!

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Name Issues: It’s Like My Theme or Something-Beach and Tai, Day 3

Like the characters in a lot of my books, the names on the birth certificates for Beach and Tai aren’t the names they are used to hearing themselves called, or even how they think of themselves.

Beach, as I mentioned in the earlier post has the first name David. He’s much more accustomed to his prep-school nickname of Beach, and that’s how he thinks of himself. However, from the first, Tai calls him David. As their relationship progresses, that one word David comes to mean something very special to Beach. But only Tai gets to call him that okay?

Tai. Wow. He and I fumbled for a name we both liked. Initially, he was Van. His mom had watched Trading Places over and over while she was pregnant with him and named him Valentine, which got shortened to Van. But neither of us were happy with it. The length was right, but it was missing his connection to his dad. I did research into Samoan naming customs. I knew his dad’s mom and aunts were there for his birth. Based on my research I came up with Toluaotai, which I hope means as I intended it to, Three Clouds Over the Ocean. Also based on my research, I found that name variants and family versions were common, so Tai he was. He got pretty tired of pronouncing it for people, so his probation officer listing is for T. Samuel Fonoti.

Poor Beach didn’t even know what Tai’s first name was until chapter five. But Tai was and is just fine with Beach calling him Sir.

That kind of name game isn’t unusual for me and my characters, though. I wonder if it’s because I’ve answered to so many different names/nicknames in my life. Pen name, geekdom name, nicknames. My parents chose to call me by my middle name from birth, so I’ve always been a little confused by one of life’s most basic questions. I still stammer a little when someone says, “Hi. What’s your name?” It shouldn’t surprise me that I’ve infected my characters with the same dilemma.

Check back to hang out with them over the next couple of days. Ask them any questions you would like in the comments.
Bad Behavior

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Then Along Came Tai–Day 2

Once David Beauchamp had firmly set himself up as a candidate for his own story, he needed a hero for his HEA. He assured me he didn’t particularly have a type, he knew what he liked when he saw it, so my brain started interviewing candidates for him. I’d done a class disparity story with Gavin and Jamie so I didn’t want the conflict focused on that. I kept seeing a glimpse of Beach’s guy, but couldn’t pin him down. Then at the end of Bad Influence, Silver got probation and the first thought from Eli was “Ooo, I wonder if your probation officer will be hot.” The idea of that initial conflict latched on and wouldn’t let go. As Beach’s hero became connected with authority, I knew his moral code wouldn’t let him have sex with a client. Therefore, they’d have to meet first.

Tai still didn’t have a name, but I knew him, knew what he looked like, Tai inspiration and sounded like, Vin Diesel, especially in Pitch Black. I even knew his family history. He also came to me stubbornly attached to a dog and a female child who insisted on the name Sammie. I didn’t even have Tai’s name yet, but I had a daughter named Sammie. Characters are pig-headed that way. They don’t care that then I have to do all these work-arounds because of their commitments to animals/children who can’t be left alone forever while my character goes off to have fun sexy times on his way to falling in love.

At least Tai was alone the night he met Beach. And then things took yet another surprising turn in the book that wasn’t supposed to be written.

This giveaway still has some time on it (through midnight EST Friday, December 5). Come back tomorrow for another giveaway. ($25 to any etailer).

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This Wasn’t Supposed to Happen

Bad Behavior wasn’t a book I was planning to write. Beach wasn’t a character I saw as a hero. Proof positive, his name.

Back when I was writing Bad Attitude, I needed Gavin to fall off that bridge. I wanted him to have a damned good reason, so the eternal party boy friend Beach was created. I named him David, which is one of my favorite placeholder names. It’s solid, but with no particularly strong feelings for me. When I went to college, it seemed like every other guy was named David, or more commonly Dave. It fit into my head as a name that I could use for side characters because I never intended to use it for a hero. Beauchamp came along because it could be shortened to Beach, a party boy name if ever I heard one, and because I loved Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss, and “And if you don’t please, the Beauchamp bitch” is still one of my favorite written lines ever.

So David Beauchamp went off the bridge, almost drowned. Gavin saved him but Beach went into a medically induced coma. I didn’t know if he’d wake up until I needed him to get Gavin in trouble again. So he did more stupid things. He had a reason, he told me, but I think he just liked getting in trouble. Again, though I knew he was bisexual, I never planned to make him a hero.

And then he popped up for just a page or two in Bad Influence, starting more trouble. He wasn’t particularly heroic then, either. But he hugged the line between charming and smarmy so perfectly when he hit on Silver at the art gallery that I had to know more about him. In just that brief walk-on, he stole my heart and upset all my plans for what I’d be writing next.

So Bad Behavior was I guess the unplanned brain child. Huh, does that make Beach the father? That boy gets around.

GIVEAWAY!

This is all new to me, rafflecopter. So I beg your indulgence while I work this out. And come back tomorrow for another post!

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