Maybe because HOW TO SAVE A LIFE is going through the final stages of editing, I don’t know, but I can’t get this song out of my head. It’s definitely Kevin’s song.
You can view the rest of my playlist for this book on my website.
I’m thrilled to announce that Loose Id will be publishing my next novel, HOW TO SAVE A LIFE. I don’t have a release date yet, but it’ll be sometime in 2013. I’ll post the details when I know more.
To give you a preview, here’s a brief unedited excerpt. It starts with Walter’s point of view, then we get to see a bit of Kevin’s.
Walter brushed the back of his index finger over Kevin’s lips. He’d always loved kissing. Even in his youth, when most of the guys wanted nothing more than the fucking or the sucking, he’d loved the kissing and touching and exploring. Kevin liked it too. He was sure of that. He’d felt it in the first kiss. And the second.
“I know what you want. And so do you.” Walter gave up on the touching and offered Kevin a little distance. “You’ve never been with a man, have you?”
“Yes. No. Yes.” Kevin blew the hair out of his eyes. “Yes, I have.”
“What? You get stroked off by another boy in junior high school?”
“You did more than a teenage experiment?”
“Yes. Sort of.”
Walter moved in close once more. “I’m guessing it’s been a very long time, and you’ve been denying yourself what you really wanted most of your life—what you still want.”
It took a moment, as if he had to force his body to comply, and then Kevin nodded.
“You’re not out?” Walter asked. Without giving it much thought, the tone of his voice had shifted to something softer.
“Do you have a wife?”
“No. I wouldn’t…” Kevin gestured with his hand between them.
“Yes. I mean, no.”
“Which is it? If you can’t remember if you have a girlfriend, then trust me, you don’t have one anymore.”
“I don’t. Have one anymore, I mean.” Kevin sucked in a deep breath. “Talking to you is exhausting.”
“Talking to you is entertaining.”
Kevin rolled his eyes. He sobered. Staring at Walter’s shoes, he said, “I left her. My girlfriend, Sondra. A couple of months ago.”
“I’m sorry it didn’t work out.”
“We’re still friends.” Kevin lifted his head. “We’ve been friends for a long time.”
“Which is why you stayed with her for so long.” Walter took another step closer. “And now?”
Kevin evaded his gaze again.
The silence stretched on between them. Walter wasn’t about to back down. He had years of experience pushing people for the truth.
Something told him with Kevin, there was a fine line between not pushing enough and pushing too hard.
KEVIN DID NOT want to talk about this. Yet a part of him longed to do just that.
Here, in this room, with a gay man listening to him, he couldn’t pretend any longer. He wanted to kiss Walter again, let his tongue wander over those lips, down along the skin of his neck to the warm flesh under his clothes, his chest, and lower to his abs, and even lower. He wanted to taste it all. He couldn’t hide from that fact. Not any longer.
He’d known for months now that he’d been heading to this moment. Whether he’d wanted to admit it or not.”
It had been easy to keep the promise he’d made in his youth. At least while he’d been with Sondra. He wasn’t a cheater. Now that she was gone, now that he was here, now that he’d felt this man’s touch…he was done holding back.
Walter cupped his chin and forced him to look up.
“I guess I can’t hide from it forever.”
“That’s good. You don’t have to hide. Not here. Not in this room. Not with me.”
After I wrap up working on the edits with my editor, I’ll share more snippets and there may even be a contest or two leading up to the release so stay tuned.
Meanwhile, I’ve got several other projects underway that are keeping me busy–so busy I’ve been hit or miss with blogging lately (in fact, I haven’t been online much at all), but I’m really digging the short piece I’m writing so that feels great. Here’s what I’m working on:
More news to come on all those.
Thanks for checking out the excerpt. I’m off to celebrate with my honey for signing my fourth book contract. Have a good one!
Here are a few of the songs I listened to while writing HOW TO SAVE A LIFE (which has an updated blurb). For each song, some of the lyrics and/or the tone really spoke to me when it came to Kevin and Walter. The blend of passion, emotion, and suspense with this story led to an interesting mix of songs for these guys.
All my blog posts with behind the story information are also available on my website.
It’s a tentative title, and I can’t guarantee it’ll stick once the manuscript reaches my publisher, but for now it’s definitely sticking with me.
Walter and Kevin’s story is tentatively titled How to Save a Life.
Here’s a first-look at the working description…
HOW TO SAVE A LIFE
Reporter Kevin Price has a knack for tripping over his own feet. And everyone else’s. He’s in over his head undercover at the Haven, a swanky gay sex club. Five minutes inside and he can no longer deny the truth about his sexuality. Determined to find out why members of the club keep disappearing, he turns to the one man he can’t get out of his head, the sexy ex-cop helping with security. Too bad he doesn’t trust cops. Not since the only night he let himself be with another man.
Walter Simon doesn’t do the club scene anymore. Not since he found love and lost it. That doesn’t mean he won’t do whatever it takes to protect the Haven. He’s not about to let anyone hurt more innocent gay men. Even if that means going head-to-head with the klutzy, closeted, much-younger reporter. Kevin has information about the disappearances. Better to keep him close. And safe.
The two must work together to find out what’s going on before more men end up missing. Neither one is there to hook up or fall in love.
Or so they think.
Hello everyone! I only have time for a quick post today, but I definitely wanted to share a link to a guest blog I wrote about music and my current manuscript (Walter and Kevin’s story).
My friend and lovely critique partner, Constance Phillips, who has her first release coming out with Crescent Moon Press later this year (Congrats, Constance!! So proud of you!!), was kind enough to give me a spot on her Character Playlist feature.
Stop by my post, Music of a Manuscript, to get a mini preview of Walter and Kevin’s story via some of the songs on the book’s playlist.
Also, keep an eye on my website for more about this story. I’ll be adding these and other videos for the rest of the playlist to my Behind the Story page, as well as more news and other behind-the-scenes details.
Have a good one!
I learn something new with each story I write. Both about me and the craft of writing fiction. As I’ve shared before, my current novel has been through a rocky schedule in terms of the actual writing, but it has had some of the biggest lessons for me when it comes to the “how” of writing.
Here’s what I’ve learned or had reinforced into my writer’s brain this past week:
And yet again, I think I’ve proven how crazy my writing process is, but I’m more than okay with that. It works for me.
Another thing I’ve learned in the past couple of years is to appreciate every moment I’m writing and to embrace the story I’m working on. Each of my novels has been quite different from the others. Over thinking the process and the act of writing, or doing any sort of comparison between works, is counterproductive. Enjoying the journey of storytelling and the characters I’m creating is a big part of what makes writing such a joy.
I try to start every writing session with that in mind.
It’s all about the story.
Some days, writing is hard, but days like today are why I love this gig. Thank you to all the readers who make it possible for me to do this for more than just myself.
I’m on my third pass working on Walter and Kevin’s story, and I had a series of great writing sessions this week. Today I worked on a chapter and a half that needed a few changes, including adding some dialogue and reactions. I ended up rewriting almost all of it. I was in some sort of zone where the dialogue and character interactions just flowed and worked better within the overall story arc. The more I rewrote, the more I knew what I had previously written wasn’t working. When I was done, it felt good to know it was the right call to rewrite those scenes.
Even though decisions like these affect the overall amount of time it takes to complete a project, this type of revising just seems to work for me. The more time I spend with the characters and their story, the clearer the overall picture becomes. Sometimes I can’t see the forest with all those damn trees in the way.
It took about five hours to get that chapter and a half rewritten. I sat in my comfy chair in my office while I wrote. These two little guys came in to keep me company.
Hope you all have a great weekend. I’m hoping to get in another 5 hours or more of writing on Sunday.
Sorry I haven’t been posting much lately. I took an unplanned/unexpected sabbatical from blogging. I’ve been slammed recently with non-writing work and family obligations, but when I did get to work on my writing, I rocked it on Walter’s story. I figured an update on my progress was long overdue.
And progress is exactly what I’m making with Walter and Kevin’s book. I’m writing every day again and finding a groove with this story that feels really good.
Which is nice because this book has been through such a long journey already. Here’s the path of its life so far:
This story is nothing like it started out as, and yet, it’s becoming more of what I had envisioned in the first place. I cannot tell you how much I love the conversations and interactions between Walter and the much younger Kevin.
This book may not have had the quickest path to publication, but I am really happy with what I’ve got on the page now.
I’ve also worked on revisions to part four of Mark and Scott’s story, the serial novel More Than Just a Good Book. I need to review a few more times, and then send to my critique partner. I’ll announce when it’s ready for you to read on the blog and in my newsletter.
So that’s where I’m at this week. Thanks for listening!