Sunday 31 January 2016

Rainbow Snippets - 31st January


This is my first go at putting up a snippet for Rainbow Snippets. Authors put up six sentences from their stories for others to comment. I've read some interesting excerpts today. This snippet is from my novel, Comfort Zone and reveals where the title came from. The main characters are Aron and Joe. If you've read Sporting Chance, you will know of Dan Morgan, the rugby player, who is mentioned in this scene.

“Dan told me about a conversation he’d had with another player when he first started playing for the Giants and had some doubts about being out and open about his sexuality.”

“I remember he talked to someone.” “This bloke encouraged him to do what he thought was best for him and said how some good players might cope playing in different positions and make it outside their comfort zone, but that good people always do. He told Dan that by being open about himself, he could do an immense amount of good in the game.”

“I’ve always admired his bravery.”
“He told me you were a good man too, and you are. You’re my good man, Aron—mine and Ellie’s.”

 Comfort Zone goes on general release 2nd February. You can find all the links here.

Sunday 3 January 2016

Looking Forward to 2016


Challenging was the word we teachers always used, and I’d say 2015 fitted that description. My arthritis was a bugger, but on the plus side, I did gain another cat and write more stories.

I’m hoping 2016 may bring some changes - maybe a new house and not being on my own so much. I have my fingers and toes crossed. As for writing, I have four stories coming out in 2016, so far.

Comfort Zone, the story of Aron and Joe, goes on general release 2nd February.

A Bell Rings, the sequel to Not Every Time, goes on general release 17th May.

Choosing Home, book 1 in the Call of Home series, goes on general release 12th July

Returning Home, book 2 in the Call of Home series, goes on general release 23rd August

I’ve written about Comfort Zone elsewhere. I’m excited about its release as I loved writing every character in this story. There is a giveaway with this post.

           A Bell Rings, is the sequel to my Christmas story, and answers the question of who Raz really is. This story is from Jack’s POV. I didn’t intend to write a sequel, but this story arrived quickly in my head and demanded to be written.
The Call of Home series, and boy did my editor and I get through some names for this series of books, is set on the North East coast of Scotland. This is one of my favourite places, and I’ve stayed there on holiday many times. The theme of the series is home and how it can call to you.

In Choosing Home, Zac McKenzie flees from press intrusion into his personal life, losing both his footballing career and his marriage. He opens a hotel and builds a successful business with the help of friends. Several years later, Seth Pritchard enters his life. He is also attempting to flee his past, only to find, like Zac, that you can never really leave your problems behind you.

In Returning Home, Darach McNaughton returns to his home town after finding his boyfriend in bed with another man – again. He transfers to the local police force expecting life to be quiet after working in Glasgow. One night, he rescues a cat and meets her owner, a wheelchair bound, tattooed, man with attitude, Brice Drummond. Darach is immediately intrigued by the man and why he’s living in what he views as the back of beyond. They say, however, that curiosity can kill a cat. Well, Princess may be safe, but is everyone else?

On to my plans for 2016.

The third story in the Call of Home series is Staying Home. The first draft is written but it needs editing, betaing and submitting. One of the MCs is Sam Carmichael, the local Church of Scotland minister, who chose to take up his home parish rather than a more glamorous position in Glasgow. The middle one of five brothers, he has his own secrets. I’m not going to name the other main character, but he has never left the town, choosing instead to stay put.

The other story I’m editing is one which was a fanfiction based on a character who appeared in two episodes of a well-known programme. It is set in late 1960s America, so deals with civil rights and the problems of being gay when it was illegal in all but one state. Throw in a nasty set of crimes, and working in the White House and you have A Matter of Timing. Maybe this year, I’ll have the courage to submit it and see.

As for writing projects, I have two I definitely hope to complete. At the moment, I’m 15,000 words into a standalone story provisionally titled, Half Full, about Jonah Jackson, a maker of bespoke furniture and Owen Williams, a librarian. Jonah is larger than life on the outside, always positive and up for anything, while Will appears to be a shy bookworm who looks after rescue kittens in his spare time, and has a webcam set up for people to watch them grow. As he says the kittens are the stars not him. These men have some things in common. Jonah was thrown out of his home aged fourteen when he told his family he was gay. Mixed race Owen, was given up for adoption as a baby. With his disability and colour, getting adopted by a family in Norfolk seemed unlikely until the Williams family took him in and loved him. This story is demanding I plan more than I usually do, but I’m hopeful to get on with it in January.

The next writing project will then be the fourth in the Call of Home series. This one hasn’t got a name yet. The leads are Hamish Carmichael, the fourth of the brothers, and Cameron Kirkpatrick. Both are teachers and find they have an interest in common, although they don’t get off to the best of starts.

I have other ideas on my writing list. I hope to write my Scottish cowboy story based on an idea I saw on the programme, Countryfile. There will be Highland coos in this one, as well as a flamboyant designer and a closeted ranch owner with a secret passion. I’m hoping for less angst!

Maybe, this year will also be the one I write the historical novel, or the time travelling one, or the crime story I have listed on my ideas spreadsheet. Maybe I'll even write the young adult story that popped into my head about Josh from Sporting Chance. Being the panster that I am, I really don’t know, but it will be fun finding out.

So that's me at the moment. I wish you all a great year, and look forward to reading lots of wonderful stories.

I have e-copies of Comfort Zone to giveaway. Please comment here if you would like to win either a PDF or EPub copy of the story which is available for early download at Pride Publishing from 5th January.

Links for Comfort Zone

Amazon UK
Amazon US
Amazon Germany
Barnes and Noble