All I See

“Very short but sweet”

all i see reveiw quote

Theo and Kieran have been together for five years. They’re very happy…behind closed doors. Theo accepted from the start that Kieran isn’t out to his conservative parents and has a lot to lose if they find out about his sexuality.

But a moment of sadness at a wedding changes things. Theo is faced with a decision: live the rest of his life in secret…or break it off.

Or is there a third alternative?

M/M Contemporary / 4633 words 

BUY LINKS / ADD TO GOODREADS

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“That was when I knew. I would never get to do what Seamus did today. I would never stand up in front of family and friends with stars in my eyes and a trembling voice and say ‘I do.’ At least not with Kieran and he’s the only one I’ve ever wanted, so who else would I do it with?”


“Don’t be sad.” His eyes are pleading with me.

“I’m trying really hard not to be. I want to be happy on Seamus’s wedding day.”

He takes a step forward, definitely standing too close now. “I love you, Theodore,” he rasps.

“I know you do.” My voice is thick, and my chin trembles. The love has never been the issue. He’s not one of those people who has a stunning woman on his arm as cover for his gayness. His excuse for nearing thirty-five without the hint of a girlfriend is that he’s too busy with work. His family believes him because he does work a lot. He isn’t, however, too busy for a relationship considering he spends every free moment in my home. As soon as he steps inside my door, he replaces his well-tailored suit with sweats and a tank top, gives me his full attention, and works hard on winning the boyfriend-of-the-century award. Secret-boyfriend-of-the-century, but still.

Except that we’ve never been on a date. Never walked hand in hand on the street or introduced each other to family and friends or done any of the other things couples do. All our time together is spent behind closed doors where we’re safe from discovery. Where no one can find out his big secret: Kieran O’Riordan is gay. Very gay, as in he loves taking it up the ass.

I understand, though. His family is over-the-top conservative, even Seamus. He’s loyal to me, but I know his parents make it difficult for him to be my friend. They aren’t subtle in their opinions when we meet. To be perfectly honest, I doubt Seamus and I would have become BFFs if we’d met when we were older, and he’d known about my sexuality. He’s not bigoted like the rest of them, but he’s a family man and will do anything to avoid confrontation with his parents.

Like his brother, Kieran loves his family. But knowing they wouldn’t accept who he really is and that he’ll lose them if they find out — at least the parents and the third brother, Liam — makes it an impossible situation for Kieran. And I’m not going to be the one who forces him to choose between us. I’m not.

When he hooks his index finger with mine, I finally lose control over my threatening tears and say the words we both know are true, but that have never been spoken out loud. “I want what Seamus has,” I whisper. “I want to get married, too.”

“I know, baby.” He takes my hand and laces his fingers with mine.

“Don’t!” I try to pull free, but he’s too strong and refuses to let go. “What if someone sees us?” I hiss.

 

Writing update

“As I write this, I’m at 3415 words, but it’s entirely possible that I’m finished with the story when you read this.”

You know when words you say come back and bite you in the ass? Welcome to my life! 🙂

In my last writing update (November 11) I told you about a short story I’m writing, Late Night Poetry, and that’s when I wrote the words in the beginning of this blog post. Show of hands: how many of you think I was finished when you read that sentence? No one’s holding up their hand? Means all of you are right 😀

Everything just got to me the last quarter of the year: we had so much to do with the move and then settling in here in Sweden in a new town where we’ve never lived before. And then came Christmas.

So I’m still att 3415 words in Late Night Poetry.

Also: since I moved to Sweden something strange has happened. I’ve been a night owl all my life and it’s been a rule rather than an exception that I’ve been awake until at least 4AM. But here in Sweden, I find myself going to bed early, like 11PM and waking up before the morning birds. And while I don’t mind it, per se, it’s thrown off my entire writing routine. I used to start writing at around 8 or 9PM, but I can’t do that now with my new sleeping habits.

So when do I write?

This has thrown me off more than you can imagine, and thoughts like Who am I even anymore? is swirling around my head. I need to figure out a new routine…which is my goal for this week (and maybe next if one week isn’t enough).

So until I have any actual writing progress to report, here’s some picspiration from Late Night Poetry for you.

Tell me: have major changes to your life ever affected you in some unexpected ways?

late night poetry picspiration v2

 

 

 

Wrapping up 2019

In 2019, I’ve had eleven individual releases and my stories have been featured in three anthologies.

Think about that for a minute.

Yes, one book is a re-release, so “only” ten new stories. Two are under 10K words. The longest book is only 34032 words and a collab with Kris T. Bethke so I only wrote about half of those words because she wrote the rest. But it’s still a lot. It’s still 185 685 words in one year.

I wrote and published my first fantasy and paranormal stories in 2019. And my first M/M/M story. I wrote about 40+ characters, about age gap, about a fluffy bunny shifter, about a party boy who wanted more in life. I wrote about a homophobic family and an awesome ex-wife. I wrote about star-crossed lovers and about the fear that can grip you when you’re at risk of losing the love of your life.

All that…and I still found the time to move across the world.

I mean. Look at this:

Nells 2019

So maybe I don’t need to feel bad for not writing much the last three months of the year (because of the move from Malaysia back to Sweden)? And maybe, we can all agree that this many releases in one year is a bit…excessive?

That being said. OH MAH GAWD, I released eleven books this year. How awesome am I?

Have you read them all? Which one was your favorite?

Thank you, all, for this year, I could never do this without you. I hope you will stay with me for the next year, maybe even for the next, new decade.

Happy New Year to you all. Don’t commit to resolutions you’ll break before February, and if you celebrate the coming of 2020 with a glass of champagne, think of me 😉

Buy links:

Awakening & French Songs | Snowed In: Nen and Anani | All I See | Diving In | His Steady Heart | 9 Willow Street | Team Luker | Of Autumn Leaves and New Beginnings | In My Arms Again | Red Popcorn Strings and Gumball Rings | Four Christmases

Legendary Loves vol 2 | Most Wonderful Time of the Year | 2019 Top Ten Gay Romance

Release day: 2019 Top Ten Gay Romance

Today is the release day for 2019 Top Ten Gay Romance, released by JMS Books, featuring ten stories written by JMS authors, and Awakening & French Songs, written by yours truly, is among them (like I told you about here.)

I’m really happy and honored to be featured with such a great bunch of authors. And for readers, this is an excellent opportunity for a bargain: the anthology features ten stories, but is only $4.79! (Until January 3, after that it’s $5.99, which is still stupidly cheap for TEN stories!)

So clickety-click the links below to do some shopping!

2019 top ten

2019 Top Ten Gay Romance brings together the best-selling short stories published by JMS Books that year.

From first love to true love, from submission to sensual, from heat to sweet and everything in between, the couples in these stories are sure to keep you turning the pages as you fall in love with them.

With stories by Kris T. Bethke, Nell Iris, Shawn Lane, JL Merrow, A.R. Moler, Elizabeth Noble, K.L. Noone, Deirdre O’Dare, Pelaam, and J.D. Walker, this head-over-heels collection goes beyond bedtime reading. Whether happily ever after or happy for now, there’s an ending for everyone in here!

Contains the stories: Snowed In: Jonah and Cooper by Kris T. BethkeAwakenings and French Songs by Nell IrisMore Than Summer by Shawn LaneBack from the Future by JL MerrowI Thee Wed by A.R. MolerHome Coming by Elizabeth NobleSound the Fairy Call by K.L. NooneSaved By Sam by Deirdre O’DareThe Amulet by Pelaam, and Truck Me All Night Long by J.D. Walker.

Buy links:

JMS Books  (20% off until January 3, 2020)| Amazon | Amazon UK | B&N | Google Play    | Kobo

Top Ten Gay Romance

Tomorrow is the release day for JMS Books’ 2019 Top Ten Gay Romance anthology (where my story Awakenings & French Songs is featured). To honor this occasion, and to wrap up 2019, I thought I’d list my top ten gay romance stories I’ve read this year.

The criteria is that I read them this year, they don’t have to be released in 2019.

The list contains contemporary, fantasy, and historical romances. The books are short and long, sweet and angsty, swoonworthy and heartbreaking, and so, so good. I’ve gushed about most of them before and all of them get my warmest recommendations ❤️

Tell me about one of the best books you’ve read this year! 🙂

top10

Buy Links:

The Best-Laid Plans | Chicken Soup | Galaxies and Oceans | Invitation to the Blues | A Leather and Tea Morning | Little Tree | The Naked Remedy | Promises | Sea Change | Shut Your Face, Anthony Pace!

Free book…and book sale!!

Smashwords is having their traditional End of Year Sale, which means all my books are 50% off. But even better: my very short story All I See (4633 words) is completely free during this sale!! So hurry on over and download it, because there’s nothing better than free books, amirite?

all i see free smashwords

Theo and Kieran have been together for five years. They’re very happy…behind closed doors. Theo accepted from the start that Kieran isn’t out to his conservative parents and has a lot to lose if they find out about his sexuality.

But a moment of sadness at a wedding changes things. Theo is faced with a decision: live the rest of his life in secret…or break it off.

Or is there a third alternative?

M/M Contemporary / 4633 words

SMASHWORDS FREE DOWNLOAD LINK

smashwords50

All my books are 50% off through January 1, so if you want to splurge, now’s the time!

LINK TO MY AUTHOR PAGE AT SMASHWORDS

Under the Felt Mistletoe

“This was the cutest, most adorable, sweetest, romantic, just adorable book.”

✅Two adorable guys
✅One quirky, lovable Grampa
✅Out of tune singing that would make Mariah Carey cry
✅homemade Christmas ornaments
✅all the feels

If that’s something that sounds good, may I suggest Under the Felt Mistletoe?

mistletoe with blurb available now

Buy links

JMS BOOKS | AMAZONAMAZON UK | KOBOITUNESB&N | SMASHWORDS | GOOGLE PLAY | SCRIBD

This is the mood board I made for the story:

under-the-felt-mistletoe-without-title1

Excerpt:

Sunday arrives with clear skies and no rain, but instead, the temperature has dropped overnight and hovers in the low thirties. I arm myself with a thermos of coffee and dress accordingly: long johns under my orange bellbottom corduroy pants, a long-sleeved t-shirt and a turtleneck layered under my windbreaker, a fluffy scarf wound around my neck and a beanie that makes my hair look ridiculous. It flattens everything under the hat, but at the ribbed cuff, my curls explode in every direction with a vengeance.

A lot of people attend the first market of the season and despite the cold pluming my breath in front of me, everyone is in high spirits and full of holiday cheer. My neighbor to the right, Mrs. Winterbottom — yes, that’s her real name — is dressed as Mrs. Santa and sells magnificent hand-crafted fir wreaths. On my left, Mr. and Mrs. Carruthers sell gold-brushed chocolate pralines that are too pretty to eat and taste even better.

Every vendor plays holiday music, greets the shoppers with a jolly ho-ho-ho, and a comment on the weather. The shoppers, in turn, have deep pockets and are eager to acquire the merchandise. People love my ornaments, and my stuff flies off the table. I will be cleaned out completely before the market closes if this continues. I need to spend more time sewing so I can bring lots more next week.

After a couple hours, huge powdery snowflakes start sailing leisurely from the sky, adding to the holiday feeling. The only downer on this fabulous day is that I ran out of coffee early. Mrs. Winterbottom forgot hers at home, and I shared mine with her. I wouldn’t let my worst enemy go without coffee if I could do something about it.

But in a lull between customers, a savior arrives.

Nelson. Carrying two paper cups in mittened hands.

Warmth flashes in my chest at the sight of him; his shy smile and brown eyes that are warm enough to thaw the thin layer of ice from the pond in the middle of the park where the market is held.

“Hi,” he says, sounding out of breath. “I know you like coffee, but I thought maybe hot chocolate would be nice in this cold?” He holds out of the cups and if we weren’t separated by the table I would show my gratitude by hugging the stuffing out of the man. New acquaintance or not.

“My hero!” I accept the offering, tear off the lid, and inhale. The sweet, slightly bitter aroma makes my mouth water. I take a small sip, but it isn’t too hot to drink so I have some more. I hum in happiness and smile at him. “This is awesome. Thank you so much.”

Nelson’s gaze is glued to my mouth with eyelids heavy and lips parted. “You’ve got …” He sets down his cup and pulls off his red and white mittens, then he leans forward and swipes the pad of his thumb along my upper lip.

I draw a stuttering breath.

“You had chocolate on your lip,” he rasps, his voice so deliciously rumbly I feel it all the way in my bones. “There. All gone.” He does a final sweep before withdrawing.

I can’t help it; my hand flies to my mouth and I finger my lip as though I’m trying to stop the lingering warmth from evaporating.

“Thank you.” My voice is hoarse. Our eyes lock as he picks up the mittens and put them back on. My breathing grows shallow and the Christmas music cacophony and loud buzz of the market-goers fade into the background. All I see is him. All I hear is his breathing.

“Finn. I …”