Excerpt – Final Encore by Scotty Cade

November 19, 2010

My first book — Final Encore — is being released today.  I hope you will take a moment to read the excerpt below — and if you like what you read, just click on the cover picture to learn more.

Billy’s drive from New Orleans to Nashville was long and uneventful.  The uninterrupted hours of interstate, with country radio stations fading in and out, gave him a great deal of time to plan a strategy, at least a short term strategy.  The first day he arrived he would find a hotel, look for a day job to help with expenses, and then look for a more suitable place to live. 

As the first few days passed, he missed his family terribly, but was nonetheless energized with the infinite possibilities of the unknown.  Nashville was his new home and for as long as it would have him, he was happy to be there.  The first week, as planned he searched the want ads for a position that would sustain him financially.  He answered several ads and within a few days, had a great lead.  The position was for a foreman at a large horse farm just outside of town called the Lazy H Ranch.  He set up an appointment to meet the owner at ten o’clock the next morning.  It wasn’t his dream job, of course, but it would pay the bills until he found something in the music business.

 When Billy turned in under the large iron arch etched with “The Lazy H Ranch,” he looked down at his watch to confirm he was right on time, nine forty-five.  Billy drove down the dust covered road and after a half mile or so, he saw two large barns on either side of the drive with what looked like an old farm house that he assumed was used for command central.  When he got out of his truck, he was looked over, more than greeted, by a rough and unfriendly looking sort.  The man was short and stocky, carrying about thirty extra pounds on his frame.  His skin was scarred from years of acne and his teeth were stained from what appeared to be chewing tobacco, as indicated by the Styrofoam cup he spit into.  Hoping this wasn’t the owner, Billy introduced himself and learned the guy was a ranch hand named Buck Stevens.  Buck directed him to wait near the east barn and someone would be with him shortly. 

Billy waited around for about forty-five minutes and no one approached him.  He was about to go back and remind Buck that he was still waiting when he saw a tall, ruggedly handsome man walking in his direction.  The man, who reminded him of an older version of the Marlboro Man from the old cigarette commercials, walked up and offered his hand.

“Hi, I’m Jules James. I’m the owner of the ranch. Are you William Eagan by any chance?”

“Yes sir, but I go by Billy.” 

The two shook hands and looked each other over for a few seconds before Jules broke the silence. “I had just about given up on you, son. I thought your interview was at ten o’clock.”

“It was, sir,” Billy replied.  “I arrived at nine forty-five and Buck told me to wait at the east barn and someone would be with me in a minute.  I was just about to go back and see Buck, when I saw you walking over.”

“That’s funny,” Jules said. “I told Buck to have you meet me at the west barn.  I have a mare about to foal and I want to be there in case there are any problems.”

“I’m sorry about the confusion, sir,” Billy said. “Would you like me to come back?”

“No problem,” Jules answered.  “Why don’t you walk with me to the west barn and we can have a chat along the way.”

“Yes sir,” Billy said, and the two men headed to the stables.  

On the short walk, Billy filled Jules in on his experience with horses and why he was in Nashville.  Jules, of course, had heard the same story many times before, but listened intently and offered words of encouragement. 

They soon reached the stall housing the expectant mother.  The mare was lying on her side and as they watched her tense up every few minutes, it was apparent she still had some time before she’d deliver.  Billy thought she looked a bit distressed, but held his tongue and tried to get a better gauge on the situation.  As they examined the mare more closely, Jules continued to tell Billy about the ranch operations and the job he had available.  After the examination, Billy was sure something was wrong.  More convinced now, he mentioned it to Jules.

“Good call,” the ranch owner said.  “I was just about to tell you I’m certain the foal is breached.”  Billy spent the next several hours helping Jules try to get the foal in the right position for a natural birth.  Eventually they succeed and by late afternoon the little filly was born healthy.  

Once the danger had passed, the two men, impressed with each other’s abilities, cleaned up and headed back to the tack room to put the supplies away.  As they entered the tack room, Buck was filling up the feed barrels and looked up and eyed Billy.

“Well, Billy,” Jules said, “I’m pretty impressed with your knowledge and skill.  As far as I’m concerned, I’ve seen as much as I need to see.  If you want the job, it’s yours.”

Before Billy could speak, Buck turned around with a disgruntled look on his face and stormed out of the tack room, brushing Billy’s shoulder in the process.

“Wow,” Billy said.  “What was that all about?”

“Oh, don’t pay him any mind,” Jules replied.  “He interviewed for the job, but I just don’t think he has the skills to be a foreman. He’s a little hot headed for my taste.”

“If I take the job, is he going to be a problem for me?” Billy asked.

“Don’t you worry, I’ll deal with him,” Jules said.  “Does this mean you’ll take the job?”

“Yes sir,” Billy replied and the two men shook hands.

On the way back to the office, Jules said, “My wife and I own a little club on Broadway and I’m headed there for couple of beers, then right back here to check on our little one.  You want to join me?”

Billy said “Sure,” and within ten minutes they were on their way downtown.

When Jules’s truck pulled up to Jean’s Magnolia Saloon, they got out and headed inside. 

As Jules opened the door to the lounge, Billy’s eyes struggled to adjust to the dark lighting, he glanced around.  It was much larger than it looked from the street, he guessed about the size of a small supermarket.  On one side, the large mahogany bar ran the full length of the room.  Opposite the bar was a raised stage with a colorful set of drums, an electric keyboard and various musical instruments on stands. In the center of the room was an expansive oblong dance floor surrounded by split rail fencing with openings at each end, and what looked and smelled like fresh sawdust scattered about. Over-stuffed chairs in numerous groupings, along with high cocktail tables and bar stools provided ample and comfortable seating.

Jules immediately led Billy up to the bar and introduced him to a beautifully matured, very well dressed woman behind the bar pouring beer from a tap. His first thought was that must be Jules’ wife Jean and his second thought was that she To him, she didn’t look like she belonged behind a bar. As he studied her, he noticed her tall slim body.  She looked to be about five foot nine and her weight around one hundred and twenty-five pounds, give or take. Her smile was beaming. With her dark brown hair and deep brown eyes; she appeared to be the epitome of joy, strength and sincerity. He had heard the term “ageless” before, but had never really understood it. It had nothing to do with how young a person looked although this woman looked very youthful. It was really about natural style and confidence

“Hey, hon,” Jules said, “this is Billy Eagan.  He just joined the Lazy H as our new foreman, but he really wants to be a country singer.  Billy, this is my wife, Jean.”

Jean stuck out her hand and Billy said, “Pleased to meet you, Mrs. James.”

“Nice to meet you, Billy, and please call me Jean.  Welcome to Jean’s Magnolia Saloon. By the way, you any good?”

“Well, ma’am, I’ve been told I am by more than just my family and friends,” Billy replied, “and I sure hope no one’s been pulling my leg.”

Jean smiled.  “Monday nights once a month, we have open mic and you’re surely welcome to join us.  Many celebrities got their start here.  We have a regular crowd of talent scouts that hang around on open mic night just to see if they might just catch the next best thing.”

 “When’s the next one?” Billy asked.

“Tomorrow night, but you better show up early because every newcomer dreaming of stardom will be here and ready to go. And the best thing is, the winner gets to be the opening act for the headliner for the month until the next open mic night.  We open the mic at ten, but you better get here by eight to sign up. We only have time for ten acts before the regular house band starts.  I hope to see you tomorrow,” Jean added, as someone down the bar called her name.

“I’ll be here,” Billy said as Jean walked away. “And thanks.”

Jules and Billy sat at the bar enjoying small talk for an hour or so, getting to know one another at a leisurely pace.  Jean came and went as business dictated, but always came right back and joined the conversation.  Finally, after all the business seemed to be addressed, Jean landed on the bar stool next to Billy.

“So what’s the hot topic you two seem to be so involved in?” Jean asked.

“Oh, we were talking about the Ranch,” said Billy. “Jules was telling me you guys live in Brentwood, but that he sometimes stays at the ranch when he needs to pull a double, or when they’re expecting a foal, things like that.  So how long have you two been married?” “Forty-nine years now and still going strong,” Jules said, as he reached behind Billy and gave Jean a squeeze. “What about you, do you have a girlfriend, son?”

“Uh, no sir,” he replied.

Jean chimed in, “I don’t mean to assume anything, but do you have a boyfriend?”

“Uh, not at the moment, ma’am,” he said with a grin.

Both Jules and Jean smiled and Billy’s eyes got as big as quarters and they all broke into laughter.  When they were finally able to control themselves, Billy asked, “So how did you know about me? I mean, I try not to spit sequins when I talk .”

As they all chuckled again, Jean said, “Our son is gay and we’ve been around you sweet boys for over twenty years now.  One’s gaydar becomes pretty accurate after so many years.”

“I guess it does,” replied Billy.  “So, Jules, how will the boys back at the ranch react when they find out?”

“Oh, no need to worry about those lugs, they’re all harmless.  You may take a little ribbing every now and again, but if you pull your weight they’ll respect you and it won’t matter none.  But I would keep my eye on Buck. As I mentioned, he’s somewhat hot headed and he already has it in for you since he thinks you stole his job.”

Billy said, “I can take care of myself, but when Buck’s around, I’ll sleep with one eye open and a baseball bat under my bed.” 

The three of them enjoyed the rest of the evening and around midnight began to say their goodbyes.  Jules asked Billy if he wouldn’t mind taking the pick up back to the ranch and checking on the little filly, so he could go home with Jean.  She would drop him off in the morning on her way in to town. 

Billy agreed and drove back at a leisurely pace, taking a mental recap of all that had happened to him since he left New Orleans.  He eventually made it back to the ranch, and after checking on the mare and filly, hopped back into his truck and headed back to his motel room for the last time.  When he got there, he stripped down to his shorts, brushed his teeth and climbed into his bed.  For a long while he laid there and anticipated the next day and night.


Click on the bookcover to find out how to purchase Final Encore.

We’ll also be having a drawing at midnight tonight – free signed paperback, or     ebook or, for Atlanta people, 2 free tickets to RENT, beginning December 3rd at Atlanta’s hottest new  entertainment venue – Fabrefaction Theatre!

(I’ll be there for a book signing on December 10th for the evening show.)

Drawing tonight at midnight – 3 prizes!

November 19, 2010

Tonight at midnight 3 drawings from the names of people commenting on today’s blog. You could win any one of these just by leaving a comment and your contact information:

Signed paperback copy of Final Encore.

Free Free Final Encore ebook.

For people in the Georgia area – 2 free tickets to Fabrefaction Theatre’s production of RENT beginning December 3rd.

Good luck!

Scotty Cade

Of Genies and Sea Monsters

October 16, 2010

My name is Scarlet Blackwell and my story was published in the Myths and Magic anthology on 15th October. It’s the tale of Ephram, the gem seller who wants to return across the world to his love, now he has made his fortune. Things don’t run smoothly when he enlists the help of genie Drakon. Yes, it’s a comedy!

Here is an excerpt:

HE WAS enormous: A giant of a man wearing a white linen shirt which virtually strained at the seams, and silver pants caught up with a wide, golden belt that sparkled with gemstones the likes of which Ephram had never seen before.

Beneath these cropped pants, his ankles were incongruously skinny, and on his feet he wore golden, curly shoes in the tradition of the country.

Ephram gaped at this apparition. The man didn’t wear a hat and his hair was dark and closely cropped, his face pale for one from the area, and his features fine and regular. His eyes were rather stunning, reminding Ephram of the smoky quartz he carried in his display case, but with flashes of emerald and gold.

The stranger grinned at the expression on the merchant’s face, his teeth shockingly white and perfect. “Like what you see, Ephram?”

“Who are you?” Ephram jumped off the bed, brandishing his dagger at the interloper. “How in God’s name did you get in here and how do you know my name?”

The man continued to look amused. “Answering your questions in order, I am Drakon. You brought me here, and I know your name because I know everything. There is nothing I don’t know.” He smirked, arms folded.

“Oh yes?” Ephram snapped. “Who was the first pharaoh of the second dynasty?”

Drakon smiled. “Hotepsekhemwy.”

“When did he rule from?”

“2890 BC. I knew him.”

“What?”

Drakon smiled beatifically and said nothing further.

“Is Arteus a magician?”

“Certainly. But hardly in my league.”

“You’re a magician?”

“You’re a quick one, Ephram.”

“What do you want?”

“What do you want?” Drakon shot back at him. “You summoned me.”

“I didn’t!”

“You did. You dropped me on the floor.”

Ephram looked down. “What? You came from the lamp?”

Drakon clicked his tongue. He started to walk around the room, yawning and stopping to look at trinkets. “Do I need to speak slowly and use words of one syllable?”

Ephram glared at him, drawing himself up to his full height and puffing out his chest. “Get out of my room.”

Drakon quirked one eyebrow, his gaze straying to the bedside table. “Who’s this?”

“Put him down.” Ephram tried to snatch the etching away.

Drakon put the palm of his hand square into Ephram’s face and shoved him onto the bed. “I can’t leave, simple one. You’ve made a contract with me by summoning me from the lamp. Now tell me what you want.”

“Oh, God, this is some horrible nightmare,” Ephram said, pulling at his hair.

Drakon put the picture back and regarded Ephram. “You’re tiresome. Tell me what you want or I’ll beat it out of you.” He smiled horribly.

“Oh, God, I want to go home! Now leave me alone, foul demon!”

Ephram threw himself face down on the bed and told himself that when he opened his eyes, the interloper would be gone.

“I’m sorry?” came an icy voice. “Foul? I’ve been voted most beautiful creature in the world five years running by the Monsters, Ghouls, and Associated Beings society! How dare you!”

Ephram put his hands over his ears and tried to count to ten.

“You offend me greatly. Why should I even grant you your wish?”

Ephram removed the hands from his ears. He sat up and turned around so fast that he hurt his neck. “What? You can send me home?”

Drakon sniffed disdainfully, nose in the air. “Certainly.”

Ephram’s jaw dropped. He threw himself to the ground, hands around the skinny ankles, lips lowered to one curly shoe.

“Get off.” Drakon lifted his other foot and kicked at Ephram. “Do you know how much these shoes cost?”

Ephram scrambled to his feet. “Did you mean it? You can help me get home?”

“I said yes, didn’t I?” Drakon smiled and a sly little light came into those golden eyes. “However, I would like a small favor in return.”

“Name it!” Ephram burst out. “Anything!”

Drakon lifted one eyebrow. “Anything?”

Ephram reddened. “Not quite anything.”

Drakon laughed. “You think I would ask you for that, Ephram?”

“No.”

“Then you don’t know me at all, because I would, actually,” Drakon cackled. “I would ask you to please me with your mouth, and more. I’m a villain that way.”

Ephram looked at him in horror.

Drakon smirked. “But you are in luck, because I am promised to another. He holds my heart, and there is the favor I wish you to grant me. I wish you to make this man fall in love with me. Failing that, I at least need you to subdue him long enough for me to do unspeakably bad things to him with my tongue. And then I will send you home.”

Ephram stared. “Does he feel favorably toward you?”

“Oh no,” Drakon replied airily and reached to the table, popping a Turkish delight in his mouth and chewing. “He hates me with a passion.”

Home excerpt #3 (Adult)

September 13, 2010

Here’s the last excerpt of the evening.

Coming home to a quiet, mostly dark house, Alec knocked on Eli’s bedroom door. “Eli, we need to talk.” There was no sound from within the room, and he feared Eli had already gone to bed for the evening. He sighed, resting one palm against the door, and whispered, “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

Beginning to feel more of his soccer workout, he slowly made his way up the stairs to his room. With every few steps, he practiced what he would say to Eli tomorrow about his moving out—his reasons, his hopes, and his desires. He opened his door and flicked on the light.

“Holy shit!” he gasped, stumbling backward into the doorframe. “Eli! What the fuck?”

Eli chuckled. “Sorry I startled you.” He sat in the chair closest to the door but got up and quickly crossed to Alec. “I had gone to bed, but I couldn’t sleep, so when I heard Ilsa turning in for the night, I snuck up here to wait for you instead.”

Alec’s racing heart began to slow, recapturing a more steady rhythm. “Y-you… didn’t have to. I don’t like the idea of you coming up here on your own like that.”

“I was careful.” He stepped closer. “I took my time.” Eli pressed his hand to Alec’s heart. “You were gone so long.” He kissed Alec lightly and tucked a stray lock of hair behind his ear, “I began to worry.”

“I was at Mira’s—talking.”

“About—”

“About several things.” He reluctantly moved away from Eli. His proximity was making it difficult to think clearly.

Eli didn’t follow. He remained by the door as Alec sat on the bed and removed his shoes.

“Did it help?” he asked, and Alec looked up at him questioningly. Eli leaned on his cane and hugged himself with the other arm. “The talking, I mean?”

Alec dropped one shoe. “Yeah, I think it did.” He smiled, remembering his friend’s advice. “Mira has a way of cutting straight to the heart of things.” He dropped the other shoe. “I don’t agree with her view on everything,” he said, “but she made some good points.” He looked Eli up and down as he stood there, just out of reach. He could get it all out now or…. “Coming to bed?”

“You want me to?”

Puzzled, Alec paused in removing his T-shirt. “Of course I do.” He smiled and pulled the shirt off over his head.

Eli grinned broadly, quickly shedding his shirt and sweatpants and revealing nothing but a firm, ripped body—a slight body, lightly dusted with dark hair and marked by those oh-so-familiar scars, the scars that inevitably led back to Bennett.

“You know, I wasn’t snooping or anything, but I noticed your football togs in the floor from earlier.” Staring at Eli, Alec’s mouth had gone dry, and he was having trouble thinking. “Alec?”

“Huh? Oh, yes… football.”

Eli took a couple of steps closer. “They were fairly grimy for someone just watching training.” Alec didn’t say anything. He only licked his bottom lip and nodded. Eli smiled and came within touching distance. Alec’s hands automatically shot out, taking hold of Eli’s hips and pulling him closer, within the circle of his legs.

Eli was already half-erect, but as Alec kneaded his bottom and pressed his face against his chest, suckling each nipple, Eli quickly responded, and his rigid cock was soon bumping Alec’s chest. Alec moved to take Eli in his mouth, but Eli stopped him, grabbing his hair roughly and pulling his head back. “You played today, didn’t you?”

They searched each others’ eyes for several moments, and then Alec grinned. “Yeah, I did. What of it?”

Eli’s expression softened. “You must be exhausted,” he whispered, gently stroking Alec’s face. He tossed his cane against the wall by the headboard, and steadying himself with Alec’s help, he carefully got on his knees, pushing Alec’s legs farther apart. Alec shivered as Eli’s hands slowly traveled up his thighs. I know what you’re doing. Eli’s hands stopped when they reached his belt, undoing it. I know what you’re trying to do, and I don’t care.

Eli paused before unzipping his jeans, cupping Alec through the material and squeezing a delicious gasp out of him. Each held the other’s gaze as Eli opened the jeans, and Alec lifted himself off the bed a bit to shimmy them off to his ankles. Alec grinned drunkenly when Eli’s fingers closed around him, freeing his stiff cock from his shorts.

“How eager it is,” Eli said when it sprang into view.

Home excerpt #1 (Adult)

September 13, 2010

Here’s an excerpt from Home. I hope you enjoy it.

“You’re shaking.” Alec, panting and painfully hard, pulled back from Eli so he could look into his eyes. “We don’t have to do this now.”

“Don’t stop,” Eli pleaded, equally breathless and pained. “I want this… want you.” He hooked his left leg around Alec’s waist to keep him close and reached out for him. His fingers played in Alec’s wavy black hair, traced his jaw, and brushed over his lips as he grinned up at him through heavy-lidded, passion-drunk eyes.

They had met in late summer and had been officially together for only a few weeks, but all the back-and-forth desire in the months before Eli decided to take a chance on the handsome, persistent American author—that was part of their relationship, too, a part of their history. Alec had gradually drawn Eli out of a darkness sparked by the murder of his partner, an attack he’d witnessed and that had nearly claimed his life as well.

But now they were facing another hurdle, another step forward, because all the kissing, breathless groping, and hand jobs just weren’t cutting it any longer. There was a lot of need for something more built up in both of them—a need to be even closer. With their housemates either out of town or spending the night elsewhere, Eli and Alec had separately come to the same decision: tonight they would make love for the first time.

After a romantic dinner out, a long conversation filled with nervous laughter and secret glances, and a short walk through the chilly air of their tiny neighborhood park, they had stumbled through the front door grabbing frantically for each other: kissing desperately, pulling at their clothes, knocking into the hall table, and upsetting the tchotchkes. But after dropping and almost tripping over Eli’s cane, they’d forced themselves to calm down and slowly, carefully ascended the stairs—choosing Alec’s attic room over Eli’s on the main floor. Up there the morning sounds of the house wouldn’t reach them, and they could pretend the rest of the world didn’t exist for that much longer.

They had begun with the familiar: Alec half on top of Eli, kissing him, rubbing him through his jeans, and Eli clinging to him, grinding upward against him, tangling his fingers in Alec’s hair. But then, seeking skin-to-skin contact, Alec had reached beneath Eli’s shirt and, as usual, when his fingers moved up Eli’s torso, Eli went rigid and gasped, involuntarily inching away from his touch. Alec had slowed his eager hands until Eli settled—until, grinning and ashamed, he scooted close again.

“I’m sorry,” Eli whispered.

“It’s okay. It’s okay,” Alec repeated softly as they slowly undressed each other. But now, stripped bare and embracing, panting, with condoms and lube at hand—Alec was the one who wasn’t okay. He had put on the brakes, worried that Eli wasn’t ready for this.

“I don’t want you doing this just because you know I want it. That’s not good enough, not reason enough.”

“Alec, look at me.” Their eyes traveled down to their duel erections. “Don’t I look ready?”

“I can take care of that without—”

“I want you inside me,” Eli growled, reaching down between them and gripping Alec’s cock possessively.

“Eh-Eli—” Alec’s eyes closed for a moment. “Uh-okay.”

“It’s been two years,” Eli said, his voice softening. “You’re the first man I’ve kissed since Bennett was killed.” His large blue eyes bored into Alec’s gray. “Can’t I want you and still be nervous?”

Not Just a Piece of Meat by Zahra Owens (for the Necking Anthology)

May 8, 2010

Hi all,
I’m Zahra and just like with most Dreamspinner anthologies, I had to get my two cents in. Dreamspinner Press also published a few of my short stories and two of my novels: Diplomacy and Façade. I have a story coming up in the Midsummer’s Nightmare Daily Dose as well called “I can see right through you!”

This is the blurb for my offering in this anthology:
Karl has been working at an up-market butcher shop slash caterer since he left school over twelve years ago. Although far from stupid, it took him forever to realize that his boss Shawn and right-hand man Peter were an item—and ever since then he’s envied their rock-steady relationship. Then one alcohol-clouded night changes his perception of the couple as they seduce him into joining them in their bed.

So, what is better than two manly butchers (Think: strong arms, nimble hands and bloody aprons) getting together? A third one joining them of course!
Lynn didn’t have to nudge me very hard to write this story. I generally like my men to be rather manly, but I also like them a bit vulnerable (who ever said the two couldn’t be found in the same man?). Even the most butch guy has a soft spot and I’m sure they have more doubts in their heads than they would ever dare to admit, even to themselves.
In this story we get to spend some time in the head of our youngest member of the three, the outsider, the one who isn’t a part of the established relationship. The added complication is that after their famous alcohol-clouded night he’s now sleeping with his boss AND his boss’ partner. So if everything goes pear-shaped, he won’t just lose a lover (or in this case: two), but he’ll also most likely be out of a job.

***

Here’s a little teaser:

Feeling Peter’s gaze woke me from my reverie, and he languidly closed his eyes as he leaned closer to kiss me. I couldn’t resist returning it, the memories of our lovemaking springing back into my mind. His lips were soft, the skin around his square jaw and his mouth slightly stubbly, and I couldn’t stop my hand from caressing it. His hand drifted to my left buttock and squeezed it, pulling my groin against his where the evidence of his morning erection was hard to miss. Although I felt a little self-conscious about rutting up against Peter with his lover sleeping close behind me, my body was in charge and I couldn’t make it pull back. Just like last night, Peter’s touches were sensual, slow, even a bit teasing, in sharp contrast with Shawn’s, which were direct and unfaltering, like a heat-seeking missile. Before sleep had caught us, it had been Peter’s kisses that had made me horny and eager, Peter’s touches which had made my skin tingle, my nipples peak and my cock rock hard, but it had been Shawn who had brought me off, convulsing, chanting his name and shooting thick white ribbons all over them and myself.

I shivered when I remembered how I’d come so hard I thought I was going to pass out.

“Cold?” Peter asked in a voice that was smooth like silk.

I pushed myself even closer to him, grabbing without watching and finding a sheet to pull over us. I couldn’t look him in the eye. “Just remembering what we did last night.”

“You mean this morning? No regrets, I hope?”

I shook my head. “I’d do it all again if I knew it wouldn’t change things between us.”

Peter shrugged and scratched his head. “I have no doubt it’ll change things between us.”

I didn’t know how to react to that. I liked my job and I loved our team. It wouldn’t be the same if the dynamic changed, and I certainly didn’t want to lose my job. Oh God, this could cost me my livelihood!

“Don’t panic,” Peter said after a pregnant pause. “You’ve just become even more valuable to us, not less.” He looked at me with those steel-blue eyes of his and made me look back. “We’ve been eyeing you for years, Karl. At first Shawn wasn’t convinced you were gay, but then that guy burst into the shop making a spectacle of himself—”

“Damien,” I interrupted.

“Your boyfriend at the time?”

I nodded. “That was two years ago. What took you so long?”

Peter chuckled. “We weren’t even going to suggest it. Both Shawn and I were worried you’d take it the wrong way and leave because you didn’t want to work for two perverts. Especially not after Damien—”

“Said he was sorry for suggesting a threesome.” I didn’t usually finish other people’s sentences, but it all fell into place right then. I shook my head, but I was smiling. “He asked for a threesome to cover up an affair he was having with some nineteen-year-old twink. This”—I pointed between Shawn and Peter—“is a whole different ball game.”

Peter put his hand on the back of my head and pulled me into a kiss again. “So you want to catch or pitch?”

“Down the Middle” by Heidi Cullinan

May 8, 2010

Good morning from Iowa! I’m Heidi Cullinan, another author in the Necking anthology. If you want the long, drawn-out bio, I’ll direct you here, but the short version is that I love writing, I love writing romance, and I love, love, love writing about men.

Necking is my first anthology with Dreamspinner Press, but I have several other works available and upcoming from them as well. My first novel, Hero, is a contemporary paranormal/fantasy (featuring a shapeshifter, but with a twist). My second and third novels are contemporary set: Special Delivery is what my husband tells me is a “road book” while Double Blind is set entirely in Las Vegas. Those two novels have overlapping characters and also feature elements of menage, which I thought was worth mentioning since you’re here for the release party of a book about threesomes. In June I have a fourth novel coming out, Miles and the Magic Flute, which is contemporary but back to paranormal again, and I also have a novella, The Wounds in the Walls, coming out June 1 as part of the Midsummer Maddess Daily Dose. You can read excerpts from all those works at my website or at Dreamspinner Press.

Please feel free to stop by my blog, follow me on Twitter, or if you’re looking for a great m/m romance discussion community, wave to me at the Goodreads M/M Romance group. (And while you’re over there, friend me as well!)

Here’s the blurb for my story:

Parker and Robbie’s relationship is slowly heading toward disaster until Parker gets drunk at a party, spills his mimosa on a handsome young man, and ends up fondling him in a public restroom. When Robbie walks in on them, it should have been the end they’d both been dreading —but somehow it’s the beginning of an erotic adventure that might just be what Parker and Robbie need.

I can’t tell you where I got the idea for this story, because mostly it just appeared in my head. I get a lot of story ideas as I wake up, though sometimes they can’t wait for a full night of sleep and hijack me at 3AM, which I can’t say I’m fond of. I’d been wanting to write something for this call for submissions, but nothing was coming to mind, so I finally gave up—only to wake up with this in my head a few days later.

As one half of a thirteen year partnership, what speaks to me most in this story is the idea that relationships might be refuges, but they’re also a lot of work. In my experience, successfully getting through a conflict can be a better glue than three dozen roses and a bottle of champagne. (Though there’s nothing wrong with those either!) In keeping with the theme of the anthology, while I must confess my real life is too vanilla to pat down a David at a museum opening (so far!), I also believe that sometimes the people who come between us, romantically or otherwise, can teach us the most about our partnerships and about ourselves.

And so, with no further ado, here’s the teaser to “Down the Middle.” I hope you enjoy the rest of the release party, and happy reading!

Continue reading ““Down the Middle” by Heidi Cullinan” »

Beautiful Friend by Dar Mavison

May 8, 2010

Hello, I’m Dar and I was thrilled to have my story included in the Necking anthology for several reasons.

First, I love to write, especially about 2 men, and 3 men is even better!

Second, Julianne is the editor, and I love working with Julianne because it’s not just about the sex.

Don’t get me wrong – it IS about the sex, but Julianne likes to go deeper. When Julianne is editing, I know I’ve got the freedom to delve not only into the bodies but the minds of your characters. In fact, she insists.

In “Beautiful Friend”,  I got to explore the minds (and bodies) of three very different men. Tex and Emerson are ex-special forces – men who have seen and done things most haven’t. Their experiences have changed them, made them hard in some places and soft in others. Work and life partners, they have a very open relationship. Emerson wants to bring a special friend of his into their bed for one night.  Gabriel is particularly attracted to just the sort of men Tex and Emerson are – big and muscular and… manly. But he’s shy, and unwilling to do some of the things Tex considers natrual and normal parts of sex.

In this excerpt, Tex is trying to wrap his head around the idea of having sex without having sex:

“It’s not a surprise. Not totally. He told me about a fantasy he’s got about being with a stranger. He wants to feel a stranger’s hands on him. This will be like that—someone he doesn’t know but it’ll still be safe. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime fantasy fulfillment kind of thing. I promise it’ll be worth all the restrictions.”

Tex shrugged. It sounded fucked-up to him. “If he wants a stranger, why doesn’t he just do a stranger?”

“Because a stranger wouldn’t know about what he likes.”

Tex knew that. “Hell, that’s the whole point of fucking a stranger.”

“I told you—no fucking!”

“Jesus!” Tex threw his hands up. There was no pleasing the guy. “Then why do you want me in on this?”

Emerson reached out and curled his hand around Tex’s neck, drawing him in close. The kiss was hard, with Emerson’s tongue firm in Tex’s mouth. “Because you’re a slut and you love it when I bring men home to you.”

Tex couldn’t argue with that. He was a slut, and Emerson didn’t bring men home to him nearly often enough. He’d been hearing about this particular man for almost two years. Or not hearing about, because Emerson didn’t talk about this one much. Although Tex might have guessed about the no-anal rule, if he’d bothered to think about it a bit more. A little while after spending time with the medic, around the time that goofy look wore off, Emerson had a tendency to get demanding. Tex had never formally connected the two phenomena before, mostly because he was not one to question a good thing. He rather liked it when Emerson got demanding, especially when that entailed Emerson fucking Tex good and hard. Emerson wasn’t particular about whether he topped or bottomed, so Emerson’s demanding moods were a real treat. Not that Tex was a bottom or anything. He didn’t have much of a preference in that department, either, as long as there was hard contact, and lots of it.

Emerson knew that, so why was he pushing this “soft” thing on him?

“I promise I’ll fuck you after,” Emerson said, reading Tex’s mind as he so often did. “If you really need to get fucked. Or you can fuck me. I really want to do this for him. It’s his birthday next month, and I may not see him again for a long time. He’s turning thirty. Didn’t you want a nice present on your thirtieth birthday?”

“I was in a battle zone on my thirtieth birthday,” Tex said.

“Sorry. I forgot.”

“At least I was getting fucked up the ass, even if it was metaphorical.”

“Okay. I said I was sorry. But what about your fortieth birthday?”

“You know damn well what I was doing on my fortieth birthday. It wasn’t that long ago—and I had my cock shoved up your ass.”

“It’s exactly like that. Except without the assfucking.”

Damn.

Unwrapped: The Birthday Gift by Josephine Myles (Necking anthology)

May 8, 2010

Hello there! I’m Josephine Myles, and I’m absolutely thrilled to have my story included in the Necking anthology, along with so many talented authors. This is only the third short story I’ve ever had published, and my first with Dreamspinner Press. I mostly write gay erotic romance, although I hesitate to pigeonhole myself too much as I follow where inspiration strikes – although inspiration usually involves imagining men loving men, for some reason. I’ve always known I wanted to write, studying literature and even teaching English lit for a couple of years, but it’s only been in the last year that I discovered the whole world of gay romance and realised that women wrote it too. That was the final catalyst I needed to get me going on writing some of what’s been cluttering up my headspace. I feel so much happier now I’m creating something and sharing it with others, and am busy working on my first novel – when I’m not being distracted by interesting short story ideas! Find out more on my blog.


I was drawn to write something for the Necking anthology because the possibilities for both erotic interest and character conflict seemed so much richer with three rather than two characters. My story concerns narrator Dave’s internal conflict as he tries to reconcile his desire for a birthday threesome with an exotic stranger with his insecurities about losing his boyfriend, Mark. Here is a short excerpt to give you an idea of what to expect:

Unwrapped: The Birthday Gift – an excerpt

I drifted back into my body, still trembling with the aftershocks of my orgasm, to the sensation of hands gently stroking me, and Mark’s lips on mine. I kissed him slowly, opening my eyes to see Pedro’s face looming closer. Mark chuckled as Pedro tried to join our kiss, pulling back and letting him kiss me properly, sharing the taste of me in his mouth. I grabbed hold of Mark’s head and pulled him back into the kiss. It was a sloppy, open-mouthed effort, but the combination of three tongues twisting together was enough to start my balls tingling again. I moaned softly, so glad that this was an experience Mark and I could share together. He was right, I didn’t have anything to fear.

Generosity swept through me, and I decided that it was my turn to give some pleasure to my companions. I reached out, fumbling around until I’d found a cock with each hand. I still hadn’t looked at Pedro’s properly, but I could feel its silken length and was rather pleased to note that he wasn’t quite as big as me, or as thick as Mark. It would have been too much if he’d been huge as well as having such a perfect body. An unworthy thought, perhaps, but a reassuring one as I felt I more than measured up against the competition. Mind you, as Mark always said, it wasn’t the size that counted, but rather what you did with it, and I couldn’t wait to find out what Pedro could do with his.

My hands were too dry to give a decent hand job, so I contented myself with stroking them both until our kiss fell apart as I started to giggle.

“Sorry! I just—just couldn’t believe this is really happening.” Mark gave me an affectionate smile and reached out to stroke my cheek. Letting go of his cock, I ran a fingertip over his curved lips and into the dimple on his round cheek, smiling in return.

Pedro cleared his throat, and we both looked up to find him standing over us.

“I hate to break up this beautiful moment,” his eyes sparkled with amusement, “But how about we take this to the bedroom? I’ve got an idea that the Birthday Boy might enjoy, but my knees won’t suffer a hard floor these days.” He quirked an eyebrow at me, and I gulped as my mind called up all sorts of tantalizing possibilities. I nodded, my mouth too dry to speak, and rose on shaky legs.

Mark gestured from the doorway. “This way.”

*****

I heartily recommend this anthology to anyone who enjoys reading about men loving men loving men!

“Perform For Me” by Lori Toland in the “Necking” Anthology

May 8, 2010

So hi! I’m Lori Toland and I am so excited to be posting here today. I’ve been writing for years but this was my first Anthology. It has been an awesome experience working with Julianne Bentley and all the folks at DSP and I hope you enjoy my story.

Blurb:

Corey is a successful thirty-five-year old doctor who lives with his partner of seven years, Justin. And Corey likes to watch. He enjoys it so much that he decided to join a sex club, not to participate, but to sit in the shadows and observe. When his favorite couple decides to invite him to join, can he take the risk of becoming part of show?

Excerpt:

The first time I ever saw them in the room, I felt frozen. My jaw was so tightly clenched, I could hear my teeth grinding together. In front of me were two men, the one who was fair-skinned with dark hair was kneeling in front of a man so angelically gorgeous it was hard to believe he walked this Earth.

I was riveted by the sight of green eyes cast down submissively, staring at the floor until the beautiful blond angel standing in front of him spoke softly and those dark eyelashes fluttered closed. I couldn’t tell if it was out of embarrassment or if the action was tinged with lust but either way, I found I was holding my breath as I watched his long fingers unlace the Dom’s leather pants, freeing his thick, uncut cock.

I should have felt awkward watching what was obviously a private act but that was why I came to this place, to watch people have sex. It was my first time at the sex club and while I felt my cheeks burning, the sight before me was the hottest thing I had ever seen.

My cock was swelling inside my loose khakis. I wasn’t naked but the slave on his knees certainly was. His prick was leaking as much as mine was from the look of it too, the head shiny and slick. I wet my lips in time with the sub as he prepped his lips and opened his mouth to take that thick, hard prick inside his gorgeous mouth.

I groaned, heedless of the others that had gathered to watch. Slowly, a crowd had trickled in as the sub had started to suck his Dom’s cock. I saw the sub smile at the reaction he was eliciting from the Dom and heard the Dom’s hiss as I saw teeth drag along the sensitive flesh.

The Dom pulled his cock out of the sub’s mouth and quicker than lightning, a crop slashed through the air and landed across the sub’s back. “I said no teeth, boy,” the angel said.

“Yes, Sir,” the sub said before covering the gleaming cockhead with his lips again. Long fingers curled into dark curls as the Dom proceeded to fuck his mouth. His gleaming lips stretching around the hot, turgid flesh in his mouth, sucking him and as the angel groaned and stiffened. I realized I had to get out of there because I was going to come in my pants, right there in front of the crowd that was now standing three deep.