All I See

Are You a Newsletter Subscriber?

Are you a subscriber to my newsletter? If you’re not, I understand, because I tend to not subscribe to newsletters since I don’t want my mailbox clogged up with too many emails fighting for my attention. But I’m signed up for a few. For the author I really, really loved. For my writer friends because I like to support them. For my favorite artist so I can see when he’ll go on tour. And for that clothing store from which I buy most of my clothes.

But I have something that might change your mind.

My fabulous publisher JMS Books have created a promo code for the release of All I’ll Ever See, tomorrow. JMS Books always offer 20% off new releases, but this code will give you 20% additional discount (only on JMS Books website). It’s exclusive for my newsletter subscribers, you won’t be able to find it anywhere else. And I’m not one of those who posts a link to my newsletter everywhere on my social media channels so anyone can see it, so when I say it’ll only be for my newsletter subscribers, I mean it.

The reason for the promo code is that All I’ll Ever See is an expanded version of an already released story (All I See) and if you’ve already read that very short story you might wonder why you should pay to read something you’ve already partly read. Hence discount. Also, tomorrow is my birthday, so consider this a gift for you. Isn’t that how birthdays work? 🙂

So if you’re not a newsletter subscriber, make sure you sign up today so you won’t miss it.

All I’ll Ever See is another wonderful addition to [Nell’s] body of work and I loved it.
Book Recommendations

Sunday Recommendation

Stop what you’re doing, something unusual is about to happen! Something unusual? you ask with an eyebrow raised in skepticism. What’s so unusual about Sunday recommendations? And you’re right, of course. That’s not unusual. But what I’m going to recommend is.

Are you ready? 😁

Bet you didn’t see this one coming…at least not if you’ve followed me for a while. If you have, you know I’m an I love short stories and standalone books, please and thank you kind of gal, and The Men of Halfway House is a seven book series, and the books are not short. I also started reading it back in 2014, so it’s only taken me seven years. Which is reasonable. One year per book, right? 😁

All jokes aside, though, I love this series. I’ve written about it a couple times before on the blog; A Worthy Man here and A Sweet Man here. I’ve declared A Worthy Man one of the most romantic books ever and I still stand by that statement. It’s also my favorite book of the series, followed closely by A Mended Man (ironically, since I wrote in the blogpost for A Worthy Man that the blurb didn’t speak to me) or A Hunted Man. My least favorite book is A Chosen Man, and by “least favorite” I mean 4.5 stars and the only reason I’ve deducted half a star is because it’s four hundred and seventy pages long, and could easily have been a hundred pages shorter without losing anything important.

There are many things to love about this series: the writing is really good, the characters are interesting, and they’re great for when you’re in the mood for reading about ex-cons, and there’s tons of hurt/comfort in the stories. Each book follows a new couple, but mostly I love these books because they’re relationship-focused. Yes, there are subplots and other things happening, but the main story of the books is always the relationship. And that’s the way I like my romance stories, with the romance front-and-center.

The books can be read out of order (I read them: 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 4, and 6) but I would recommend starting with the first one, A Better Man, since it sets the scene for the rest of the books. They can be read as standalones; yes, the characters from the other books will show up, especially Julian and Matt from A Better Man, because they run the halfway house of the series title, but I didn’t have any trouble following along.

So if you’re in the mood for a long series of relationship-focused, well-written thick books about ex-cons, I wholeheartedly recommend The Men of Halfway House. Jaime Reese is also writing an eighth book according to her webpage, and I look forward to seeing what that will be.

A Better Man :: A Hunted Man :: A Restored Man :: A Mended Man :: A Worthy Man :: A Chosen Man :: A Sweet Man


Labor Day Sale @ JMS Books

It’s book sale time again! Wohoo, we all love cheap books, right? One thing I love about JMS Books is that they offer sales frequently, so even if you have a tight book budget, there are always lots of opportunities to buy books at a lower price. And Labor Day is no exception. As always, pre-orders are included in the sale, so now’s the perfect time to buy my upcoming All I’ll Ever See, the extended (10k words added) re-write of my previously released short All I See.

The Re-Written Story :: Three-Stories-In-One Box
The Autumn Story :: The Pandemic Story

And as always, all my stories are included in the sale, so check out my JMS Books author page if you really wanna go crazy and splurge. And as always, I’d like to recommend a few books written by my fellow JMS authors that I’ve read and loved.

As you can tell from the identical covers, these are all Hot Flashes, which means they’re really short (under 5k words). And when I said above that I’ve read and loved them all, it wasn’t technically true; Bookwyrm hasn’t been released yet so I haven’t had the opportunity to read it, but I’ve read enough of K.L. Noone’s books to know it’ll be good and to feel comfortable reccing it. And I’m definitely taking advantage of the sale and buying it for myself. Stage Struck is an Elizabethan theatre story, Sea Change is a melancholy tale, The Bake Sale is a lovely story of acceptance, and Chicken Soup is 3348 words that make me sob every time I read them.

Release Blitz

New Release Spotlight: He Wears My Ring by Iyana Jenna

Today, I have a guest on the blog, someone who’s never been here before. Please help me welcome Iyana Jenna, who’s here with her new release He Wears My Ring. It’s a short story and you know how I feel about short stories by now, right? They rule! 🙂

Thank you so much, Nell, for the chance to be on your blog with my new release. Here is some information about my story, He Wears My Ring.

Declan Everett proposed to his boyfriend and co-actor, Killian Sawyer. They do love each other, but they each also have a best friend. Neither Declan nor Killian has special feelings toward their respective best friends, yet suspicion is always there, like an elephant in the room.

And more, there is another issue Declan keeps from Killian. Will it stay lurking in the darkness?

Gay Romance / 3489 words



“Don’t do that again.”

Lying on his side with his back to Killian, Declan frowned.

“Do what?”

“Don’t you go away like that again to William’s place or anywhere at all.”

Declan felt his spine tighten, his fists balling under the pillow. His voice turned cold when he spoke again.

“Why? What would you do if I did?” His chin was up with defiance though Killian could not see him. But he could feel the other man’s eyes bore into him.

“What would I do, Declan? What would I do? Do you really want to know?” Killian’s voice was thin and razor-sharp and cut into Declan’s heart like a flaming sword, leaving it bleeding. When Declan didn’t answer, he went on. “I would think that you truly want to stay with William, so I would keep it that way.”

Declan could not believe his ears.

“You wouldn’t want me to come back?”

“Hey, you were the one who walked away, Dec. I didn’t ask you.”

For some time there were only sounds of the two men breathing. Then Killian broke the silence.

“Will there be a next time, then?” he asked quietly, shaking Declan’s shoulder gently. “Hey.”

“I never leave people.” Declan sniffled. “People leave me.”


Reading, watching movies, and being unable to find exactly the thing she wanted to read have led Iyana to write her own stories, mostly about man-on-man romance that has fascinated her since as early as the Starsky and Hutch era. Teaching and writing English course books during the day, Iyana spends her nights mostly dreaming about love stories between two men who are protective toward each other.


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About Nell

Goodbye August

September is here. But even more importantly, fall is here. And last year, something happened to me that transformed me into a fall-loving person when my favorite season has always been spring before. So I’ve been longing for fall for weeks already; I’ve been craving lit candles and full red wines and hearty stews and warming soups and evenings spent reading in front of a sparkling fire. And now that time is finally here. Yay.

But before this blog goes into full-blown autumn-mode, let’s take a look at 10 pictures from August, shall we?

In case you’ve forgotten, when we said goodbye to July, I was in the middle of a vacation from work, something that continued for two weeks into August. Vacation was great; it started out with a visit from my grandbaby, daughter, and son-in-law, and continued with evenings like these; hubby and I on the porch, listening to a great playlist, having a glass of bubbly or three.

I also repotted some of my indoor plants: these are coleus that I grew from seed that needed to be put into individual pots. I also gave the Chinese Money Plant (to the right) a bigger pot. I’ve never had a green thumb before, but apparently I do now. 😁

Our friends told us about a ramen restaurant that opened in Malmö (where we used to live before we moved to the house in the country), and if you’ve followed my blog since I lived in Malaysia you probably know that ramen is my favorite food in the whole wide world. So the hubby and I jumped into the car and drove to the restaurant to try it out. It looked good, but sadly we were disappointed. They made the ramen with chicken broth instead of that deep flavorful pork broth that has simmered for hours and hours, and that gives the dish its complexity. This was a nice enough noodle soup, but it wasn’t a real ramen.

I had such high hopes. Do I have to return to Kuala Lumpur for a decent bowl of ramen?

The last week of our vacation, we jumped into the car and drove toward our old hometown: it was time to visit our families for the first time in over a year. On the way there, we stopped by Cliff Burton’s (Metallica’s bass player) memorial stone, that sits where he tragically died in a bus crash in 1986.

On our way to visit a friend, we stopped at Granbergsdals Hytta. It’s a smelting furnace built in 1642 even if it didn’t look like this back then. Hubby and I have a soft spot for this place; back in our youth (we’re talking early nineties) we were members of an amateur theatre company, and we acted in a couple plays here in this old, lovely building. Back in 1994, I played one of the gods in The Good Person of Szechwan by Bertolt Brecht. Wanna see a pic? The young girl in the middle of this picture is Nell as a 22-year-old aspiring actor. 😂

(Wanna see another pic? Again, the young girl in the middle is me, but here I’m playing a tree. A rowanberry tree to be exact, in a Swedish play called The Story of a Tree.)

Let me tell you: spending an entire summer in that old building with likeminded people was awesome.

This picture is filed under Things I Never Thought I’d See. After visiting a dear friend in his new house, he said Make sure you don’t miss the camels on your way back. Hubby and I said Huh? Camels? but kept our eyes open. And sure enough, there they were. Grazing peacefully in the Swedish countryside. Let’s just say that camels are not native to Sweden, so I really hadn’t expected that.

But all things must come to an end, and that goes for vacations and summers, too. So on August 16 I had to jump on the train and go back to work. It was a drab, rainy day, as though the weather commiserated with me.

One day, we woke up to new neighbors; a herd of cows in the field next to our house. The field has been mostly empty all summer, with the exception of a girl and her horse a few times, but I’m happy about the new neighbors. They’re very curious about us and stare at us when we take out the trash, or when we…

…decide to jump into the pool one particularly sunny weekend, because who knows if this might be the last chance? Our pool isn’t heated (that’s a project for next year) and the water temperature was 19C (that’s 66F for you heathens who refuse to use the superior Celsius scale 😆). I sat by the side of the pool for the longest time, fiddling with my phone, splashing my feet in the water while considering whether I should jump in or not.

After a while, I decided that yes, I was gonna do it, so I changed into my bathing suit and literally jumped into the pool. I was gonna use the ladder, but hubby shook his head and said I’d never go through with it if I did, so I handed him my glasses and jumped. And surfaced shrieking, because holy crap that was cold. My shrieks drew the cows’ attention; they came wandering to the part of the fence where they could see my pool shenanigans, and they stood there staring at me, as though they were thinking What’s that crazy human doing? When I rushed inside to put on something warm, hubby checked on the cows only to find that they’d wandered along. The shrieking seems to be over, let’s go eat some grass instead.

Just because my vacation was over, didn’t mean everyone’s was, so one weekend we got visitors. My brother and sister-in-law came to stay for a few days and it was lovely. While they were here, we engaged in a Great Swedish Tradition: the crayfish party. My SIL brought crayfish and shrimp, and we ate it with bread and a pecorino-basil pie, drank snaps and sang silly drinking songs as tradition demands. It was lovely.

(If you’re paying attention, you’ll know that this is actually the eleventh picture, but it’s my blog and I break the rules if I want to 😁)

And on one gray, rainy day at the end of August (the 27th to be precise), we had a huge pile of firewood delivered and I declared fall season officially opened. Bring on all the autumnal things!

How was your August? Tell me something that you did in the comments!