Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Monday, May 29, 2017

So, today's weirdness...

So, today was sort of a day of rest. The fam has been going balls out, and seriously-- a day to just chill was needed. But that didn't stop us from entertaining ourselves...

*  I woke up early this morning--but tired. Given that this was a day of chillaxing, I decided to go back to bed. Which was when my phone blew up with lots and lots of people wanting to text/IM and so I rolled out of bed, sucked it up, took a shower, and got the dogs ready to go walking.

When I went into the bedroom to tell Mate I was leaving, he was in bed, asleep in his clothes.

Apparently, I broke protocol.


*  So, before I left to walk the dogs, I was in the bathroom in the back of the house, when my phone rings. It's Chicken, calling as she waits to start work. The fanfic she was reading had gone hideously wrong, and she needed--NEEDED--a sympathetic ear. I listened, and then I frowned. "Hey, weren't you supposed to drop your brother off before you went to work?"

"Yeah, Mom-- he's there."

"Wait-- Big T is here?"

And then Mate--who has heard the whole conversation-- says, "Yeah, he's here. You may want to get out of the bathroom and join the day."

* When I got back from the walk--expecting Mate to be asleep and the kids to be playing video games--I was about 1/4 right.

ZoomBoy had gotten an invitation from one of the kids he plays Overwatch with on a regular basis. The kid wanted ZB to go play in his pool, and since Mate knew his parents from work, THEY were getting ready to go there. Big T was done with laundry and ready for me to take him home.

And Squish? Squish was sitting crosslegged on the couch, playing video games.

"Squish, how about you. Do you have anything you want to do today?"

She waved a hand around her general aura of contentment. "This."

"Groovy. I'll be back in a few."

And I have to admit-- she was pretty happy at the end of the day.

*  On my way back from dropping Big T off, I stopped at my LYS. Unlike the LAST time I stopped at an LYS, in Medford, I had a specific thing I wanted--namely baby blanket yarn.

Anyway, I as I walked in, I saw stacks upon stacks of yarn for sale.

I said out loud--for Babetta the proprietess to hear me-- "This, she said to herself as she entered, could be a tactical error."

Babetta was tickled, and we had a conversation about yarn (what else?) and I showed her the above picture and asked if she still carried that fiber artist. She didn't--but she was looking at ways to order from her, and she told me something interesting.

"That was made by dyeing a blank," she said.

And then she explained. In order to get gradient yarn like that, one method is to use a knitting machine to knit a wide panel of plain stockinet stitch knitting-- a blank-- and then to dye the panel in stages, and rewind the yarn from the panel.

Now I know a few years ago, there was a company that made the blanks into a scarf-size, dyed them, and then sold them with the option of knitting right from the blank, and I have to tell you--

I think that's amazing.

*  So, I missed my morning nap, but I made it up after I got back from the yarn store. I had JUST closed my eyes when I got a text from Mate-- "Ilene the soccer treasurer might stop by."

"I'm napping."

"Never mind."

So, when he got back from the pool party, he told me he read the text and told his friend, "Oops, she's napping. I'll make other plans."

"If she's napping, how does she answer your text."

"Man, I don't know--but once she tells me she's napping I give her at least an hour before I bother her again. Maybe an hour and a half."

"Oh. So. Napping."

"Oh yeah."

* * *

So there you go--

A very odd little day.

But you have to admit... twas very chill.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Damn--did you see that weekend fly by?

Okay-- another breakneck weekend. Squish performed at the River Cats game on Friday with her whole school choir and my folks went to see her sing. So did Mate, ZoomBoy and I--and we did have the best time.

Saturday I met with the Sacramento writer's group--I always get the acronym wrong, but basically it's Sacramento writers of queer speculative fiction, and J. Scott Coatsworth is our fearless leader. Anyway-- we're going to have a booth at Sacramento Pride next week, and we were making plans for that at Cafe Dantorel's.

After I drove up from Sacramento, we took Squish and ZoomBoy to my parents to stay the night, while Mate and I went to a party with Mate's soccer peeps.

*sigh* Parties with too much alcohol are always a mixed bag. The good news is, before things got weird, leaving Mate and I to tiptoe away like fleeing thieves as the drama fell out around us, there were some awesome moments. Some of you may have seen Mate's video riding the bull, for example? Yes. He was as studious and serious about it as you may imagine--but he also did a damned good job.

I also had some lovely conversations, and I had this picture taken with my friend Maria Teresa, whom, you may remember, was the inspiration for the wonderful mother in Lollipop. Her daughter had just graduated from Sac State, and having seen that little girl grow up with Chicken, I was unutterably proud of her myself. Anyway--the picture isn't particularly flattering to me, but Teresa is radiant--and she's always been beautiful, and I'm so glad we finally have a picture together.  (She and her husband, Lalo, were smart-- they left before the weirdness began.)

Anyway--

This morning, after dropping Geoffie off for her regular vet checkup we went to get Big T so he could do laundry, and then, after picking up Chicken too, we went up to my folks' house again, this time to barbecue. I didn't take any pictures--but there are plenty of pictures of the backyard on the blog--but Chicken and I spent a long time talking about all the times we used the yard as inspiration--most notably in , Bella's Brother and Shiny. I'm not sure how my stepmom felt about that, but it made us happy.

So we came home, had a quick movie--Sinbad--and then bed, and tomorrow is going to be some housecleaning and some serious work on my current WIP.  And if I'm lucky, I may even get to go swim.

So there you go--a big weekend, and maybe some naps tomorrow.



Thursday, May 25, 2017

Writing is Hard

write write write write write... WAIT!

Is this making any sense? Did I describe that right? Did I over-describe it? Is the prose plain? Is it precious? Is it commercial enough? Too commercial? Did I do that thing that that one reviewer on GoodReads really hated?

Do I care enough about that one reviewer on GoodReads to actually change my prose for this person who didn't get the book anyway?

Okay okay okay... words to do. Write it ugly. Just keep going...

WAIT!

Do I really know that fact? Hold on, let me look that up. Well, 15/100 women get pregnant using condoms, skipping one birth control pill a month can make you fertile, so YES, this character CAN get pregnant!

Wow. You'd think a woman with four kids would know that birth control fails. But then, I was never really trying to control it--I just sort of let it happen.

Okay, stop cruising Wikipedia, nobody cares about condom brands.

And write surf Twitter write answer e-mails write I absolutely NEED to be on FB now...

AUGH! I'm running out of allotted writing time... WRITE MOAR WRITE FASTER WRITE NOW!!!

Oh, wait... do I have to pee?

That took way longer than I'd planned. Probably best not to text message when I do that. Now, where were we...

Oh yeah.

Write.

*yawn*

Time for my nap?

Already?

Well, got a lot of driving to do this afternoon.

Can't fight the nap-- it's damned important.

But first, let's see if the fascist traitor in the WH has gotten us involved in a war lately... *yawn* Dammit, just when a Republican was going to say, "Gee...I didn't USED to care about the weather in St. Petersburg--why is THAT important?"  *yawn* But seriously. Nap.

Okay, kids, shopping, getting back to that whole, you know, writing thing--no, I don't have any thumbtacks. No, I don't know where they are. NO YOU CAN'T PUT THAT HERE. If you guys didn't keep putting shit here, I might know where the thumbtacks are! Okay, yeah. Get stuff in the fridge and I'll make dinner. Yeah, sure you can have a cracker, knock yourself out. Writing, why do you ask? I know I haven't written anything in ten minutes, I've been dealing with crackers getting set on my desk and finding thumbtacks. No, I haven't found them. That's your job!

Okay, the stuff is put away? Time to cook!

*fry chicken* *write* *fry chicken* *write* *make salad* *give up on writing and sit down to watch TV and eat*

*text friend text friend text friend*

*feel bad about not being completely mentally present for family in front of television*

*put phone deliberately down*

Oh, time for the kids to go to bed?

Dammit.

Night guys.

Now, time to write!

But first, find my jam...

That's not it...

That's not it...

Oh God, who put that on my Spotify?

Okay, that's it...

And write!

Wait, where was I?

Wait, what else fell into my inbox?

Wait, where was I again?

Oh God--this is a sequel-- do my descriptions match? *goes to bathroom* *reads own book for twenty minutes on toilet* SHIT! Descriptions don't match!  *goes back and backfills*

Okay, that took twenty minutes. I've got an hour left of writing time, and *yawn* That nap again...

The long, six-hour one between now and then...

Wait!

I have to blog!

God DAMMIT, I was just fighting off sleep.

*blog* *blog* *blog*

Okay... write!

Wait. Where was I again?  Oh my God! That's all I've done all day?  HOLY FUCK I'M BEHIND SCHEDULE!

write write write write write write write write write write write write write write write *yawn*  Okay. I can send this to my beta.

Time for bed.

I've got to write again in the morning.


A whole lot of random...

Sorry about no blog last night--I basically fell asleep at surprise o'clock, and no work got done. Today was kind of full, mostly of weirdness that I shall share--

So here goes...

*  First of all, I'm an idiot. I try to be plain about this, but every now and then a situation arises that makes it hard to avoid my idiocy.

Such as forgetting whether my iPhone is a 6, a 6S, or a 6S Plus.  And then ordering the wrong faceplate from the faceplate factory. And then having to explain what an idiot I am to the poor stranger on the other end of the chat box.

Seriously--I"m going to add that to the next Winter Ball installment. Skipper and Carpenter are going to be using chat boxes instead of telephones, and some idiot woman is going to be freaking out because she ordered the wrong product and can't remember which one she DID order, and Carpenter is going to be like, "Lady, did you remember to breathe when you woke up this morning? Cause if not, you got bigger things to worry about than our product!"

This scene has got to happen. I'm saying.

* ZoomBoy worked VERY hard to earn back his demerits from all the tardies he and his dad earned, so he gets to go on his trip to Sunsplash tomorrow. Today, I asked him if he had any flip flops and he came back with two completely different shoes.

"Is this okay?"

"Only if you want to get teased about this for the rest of your public school career."

"We only have ten days of school left."

"Oh, baby-- something like this will dog you until graduation."

"That's okay. I don't mind."

"Could you at least look?"

"Fine."

*  We tried for an entire twenty-minutes to watch the new version of Dirty Dancing tonight. About the time we got to the Starship Captain having erectile dysfunction and Haley from Modern Family growing a brain, and all of the nuance and subtlety that made the original something special put into clanky exposition because nobody understands how to critically think about dialog anymore, we decided to watch Muppet Christmas Carol instead.

"Ah, yes," I said. "That movie is like a balm to my soul."

Mate gave me a wounded look. "I thought you liked this movie!"

"I do!"

"But you just said it was a bomb!"

"Balm. B*A*L*M. Not bomb!"

"Oh!"

And at this point, Squish got in on the act. "But what's that? What's it doing to your soul?"

And Mate said, "It's a salve."  It sounded like, "sav".

"I don't know what that is either."

"It's like burn ointment," I said, wanting to get to the singing. "So like aloe vera for my soul."

"Okay. Are you sure we can't watch the new Ghostbusters?"

"Yes! Yes I'm sure!"

"Fine."

*  Also. I am a bad parent. I completely blew up at Squish over something trivial, and we all learned a very big lesson.

The very big lesson of, "If you ask Mommy to sing "Star Spangled Banner" with you, and then correct how she said 'o'er' RIGHT BEFORE Mommy is supposed to hit the high note, Mommy will irrationally lose her shit all over you in the minivan, and your life will be meaningless as you know it."

Yes. We all learned this lesson.

I learned not to sing the "Star Spangled Banner." Ever.

She learned not to correct people on their word choice until the song is over. Holy Jebus, that ticked me off.

And now you know.      

* Oh. Mate and I are watching American Gods, which is a STARZ Network movie, and has lots of full frontal nudity and sex.

Some of this sex is M/M.

So, say, the Ifreet scene in the "Head Full of Snow" episode, which features an Ifreet who says he doesn't grant wishes. But, well, let's just say he's ENDOWED enough go grant a couple of wishes just by, well, taking off his clothes.

So, watching this, eyes wide, mouth open, entire body on OMG GAY SEX IS HAPPING IN FRONT OF ME HURRAY, and Mate goes, "Enjoying yourself?"

"Yes. Yes I am."

"I'm glad to see it."

"You get Bilqis and Laura. I get Shadow and the Ifreet."

"That's fine."

"We both get Ian McShane, because he's wonderful."

"I totally understand."

"This show is awesome."

"Yes, yes it is."      

Seriously-- you should watch it. A-MA-ZING.

And on that note, off to bed!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Made. Of. Sleep.

So, my neck has been ungodly sore these last few days--I'd say it's the result of all the driving but I think what it really is has been all the reading I've been doing. Something about the angle at which I hold my head when I'm reading off my phone tends to fuck my neck right up.

*sigh* It figures something I love to do without calories or consequences is still bad for me.

Anyway-- the little kids are pretty snarky because we were gone. I think next time we leave we need to leave them with grandma. I get no snark when grandma supervises, that's all I'm saying.

Also-- I bought a watermelon last week that I sliced up last night for dinner. Was good tonight too. I didn't expect that, and I will forever think of watermelon as the gift that keeps on giving.

Took two naps today--both went way longer than I expected, and I think I'll probably fall asleep a little early tonight. Damn. I mean, damn. I don't know how Mate can even function. (Of course, he went to sleep about two hours before me for the last two nights, so maybe that's how.)

Also-- took the assholes for a walk this morning, and they were SO. HAPPY. But one of the things I need to remember as it gets hotter and hotter, is something I just saw on the net. It said if you can't hold the back of your hand to the sidewalk for the count of five because it's too hot, then it's too hot to walk your dogs. This is a good thing to remember before you embark on a little trek, because their little paws can be so tender!

Have been watching American Gods, and it's going right up there with Legion for world's most trippy show that I adore with all my heart. Just... the gorgeously designed production, the way they both play with symbolism to totally fuck with your mind... oh my God!  Television has gotten SO MUCH BETTER than it was when I was a kid.

Dudes.

And that's about it--I'm going to aim for another 1000 words and then go see how much sleep I can get, and whether or not it does nice things for my neck when I get it.

Fingers crossed!

Oh!

And the cover?

Well, I've been saying the werewolf stories will be re-released in October. This is the cover for the second one (done first, because) and I'm just so in love with Teague all over again. *sigh*

Which reminds me-- Quickening V.2 is out on June 13th-- so, you know. Don't forget. Because I left part one in SUCH a good place, right?

*laughs evilly all the way to bed*







Monday, May 22, 2017

Medford

So, we left the kids with  Chicken and went to my cousin's wedding in Medford--it was lovely.

Medford is a long drive though--and I'm knackered, so I'll leave you with some pictures and some captions and take my achy body off to bed!

Mount Shasta, which plays with your perception as you come down the hill from Oregon.

An attempt to get more mountains on film, which ended badly--except the rainbow was very pretty and I liked it. 

Medford is part of Gold  Country (it has it's own Pony Express statue, like Sacramento) and Yreka is too. 

Kevin and Kailey, the happy couple getting married.

Of course I looked for a yarn store on Saturday before the wedding and bought this.

It was not, however, the only thing I could have bought.

A shot of the B&B where the wedding was held. 

The Willows--it was lovely.

I did not get a picture of my Aunt Monica, who is the mother of the groom, because I'm an idiot, but this is my Uncle Phil, his sister (in the middle), Teresa, and his wife (on the right) Barbara. Phil and Barbara are the very nice people who gave Big T a job--they have nothing but good things to say about him, and Mate and I delight in breaking the bad news that he has flaws.

So far, they refuse to believe. 

Middle-aged people attempting to be romantic. Sorta works. The man is very handsome and indulges his often silly wife.

We ate here this morning, because wouldn't YOU?


Mate was trying to capture the mountain's height on the sign with the mountain itself. 14, 161 feet. So, a mountain, really.

Yup. Still a mountain.

A lake named after the mountain, which is in fact further away (I think) than another mountain of equal size.  I don't understand either. But Lake Shasta is where I set Rampant, for those of you who are Little Goddess fans. 

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Recitals and Concerts

 So, ZoomBoy has gone to this school since the first grade, and Squish since Kindergarten. This is something of a big deal for Mate and I--I switched schools a couple of times before high school, and so did Mate, and we wanted our kids to have as much continuity as possible.

Big T was doomed from the start--in California, special ed students are shuttled from program to program, so he changed about five times before high school. In a way, it was okay because the same kids got shuttled with him, but in another way, there wasn't the same sense of continuity, and he knew it.

Chicken went from the private school across the street (for those of you who remember Shiny!, why yes, I used some of that school in that book, why do you ask?) to our "home" school which was a nightmare. She kept getting sent to the library to teach herself math on the computer program because she was one of two students not swinging from the light fixtures.  Anyway, we moved her to Big T's Junior High, so for two years at least, they attended the same school, and she didn't know anybody and they threw food at her and bullied her and I spent a lot of time taking days off and hanging with her so she could make it through junior high.

They split up for high school--Big T had a program at one school and the other school had academics she couldn't get at Big T's school, so...

Oi.

It was a luxury to have ZoomBoy and Squish here, at the same school. Even when ZoomBoy moved on to junior high, Squish wanted to keep going. She liked the continuity just like we did.

But next year is her last year, and it's starting to hit me.

There's going to be a whole lot of lasts at that school coming up--including "last Christmas choir, last spring choir, last back to school night."

Tonight was the spring choir--and Squish sang like an angel (I assume--she looked like one anyway) and I was glad to be there. Afterward we went out (per family tradition) and got hamburgers and generally laughed and teased each other.

One of Squish's songs was "Consider Yourself," from Oliver Twist, and we told Squish the story of how her sister danced to that song in the sixth grade, and her bloomers dropped from under her skirt and puddled on the ground. Squish already knew the story--come dance recital time, Joanna, the instructor, uses Chicken as an object lesson in just kicking the thing out of your way and keeping on keeping on, but Squish never knew it was this song.

And the story just made me remember--these things are finite.

Big T will never wrestle again, and they don't need us to show up at the college and talk about his student rights.

Chicken isn't going to dance for JoAnna's again. And she's played her last soccer game.

So has ZoomBoy.

Someday, Squish will too.

And while right now, going to choir was a it's a lot of hurry and "Hell, where's your shirt?" and  "oh God we're tired" and a "We're leaving for my cousin's wedding tomorrow and we have no time!" I'm glad we went to hamburgers afterward for the family moment, and that Mate took some pictures.

Because we don't have too many more nights in a grade school cafeteria, listening to kids do their best to make music, left in our family.

And we're going to miss them when they're gone.







In the Neighborhood

Quick one tonight--I'm on a roll.

So, I was walking my dogs (shocked, we are, Amy--because you do this six days a week) and on the approach side of the giant, mile-long loop, there was a GINORMOUS HOUND. Like an English Mastiff or a pit bull or something that was taller than his person when he stood on his hind legs.

He wanted to eat Geoffie.

He did.

Geoffie wanted to be eaten--or at least that's what I got from the way she didn't stop barking.

So I took the dogs on a different loop approach as it were--out past the park, into the residential sector around the park, and there I met a woman with two dogs.

She knew me from aqua! Which was fun, and we compared dogs, and it was funny because I've always been sort of blown away by how different Johnnie and Geoffie are, when they are, in fact, both  Chihuahua crosses-- Johnnie crossed with mini-pin, and Geoffie crossed with ShiTzu. Well, this woman's dogs were both crossed as well--they were doxie crosses, and one was crossed with Yorkie, and was sort of skinny and wispy and nervous looking and the other was crossed with Australian shepherd and was BEAUTIFUL black and gray mottled and long-haired and long bodied.

So it was a nice conversation and then we left saying, "See you in aqua!"

And we waved in aqua.

And then... well, today was the day I chose to tell Trina, the aqua instructor, that I put her in the next Johnnies book.

Trina is very cool about what I write, and pretty cool about most things, so when I told her she was in a book with porn stars, she wanted to know if SHE could be one, and I was like, "No. I'm not giving you a porn scene--but I do need some cosmetic moves so the guys look ripped."  So I got to hear about "preacher curls" and "squat thrusts" which was great, but the rest of the pool got to hear what I wrote.

The woman with the two dogs was taken aback, which is too bad, because I'd enjoyed our conversation and Geoffie appeared to be civilized when talking to her dogs, and Geoffie NEEDS to learn manners, or, yes, one day she will incite the wrong ginormous fuckin' dog and get eaten.

Anyway-- I told Trina I'd let her see some of my book covers, so I'm going to plaster them all over this post and tag her on FB so she can see what my covers look like. And hopefully the nice woman with the two dogs will see too, and I won't have to worry about her hustling the dogs in the opposite direction when we meet :-D









Wednesday, May 17, 2017

A few random moments...

So, partly we're doing the same-ol, same-ol here--Mom the taxi service and Mom the writer both vie for the same time slot.

But still-- the same-ol has it's appeal, and since Mate and I are driving up to Oregon this weekend to attend my cousin's wedding, the same-ol' same-ol' is sort of a welcome respite from GO-GO-GO, which, yes, we're going to indulge in once again. (btw, just writing that reminded me that ZoomBoy has a concert on Thursday. NEVER. ENDS.)

But following are a few things of interest during the day--

* I know I mentioned this in context with the benefit, but a portion of the proceeds of this book will be sent to the Keith Milano foundation for Mental Health Awareness.  For those of you who've read this book, you'll know why I've chosen it. For those of you who haven't... well, there's a reason. (And the book is still pretty happy, really, so that's good too!)

*  I'm working on Bobby Green right now, and as with all the Johnnies books, it's ripping my soul out.  You're welcome.

*  When I go walking in the park, there's an older woman there--in her eighties, I imagine, and she has a small black dog named Nibbler. Fans of Futurama will read that and, hopefully, laugh their asses off.

*  The kids had a dentist appointment today and I somehow managed to EPICALLY FAIL picking them up for that. I still don't get it--I left an hour early, but something about the kids hearing they had a dentist appointment made everything move SLOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWW....

*  Mate stopped on the way home from work to get a hair cut and go grocery shopping. I know he was ESPECIALLY hangry when he got home because we had a leftover Quarter Pounder with cheese after an emergency lunch stop for Mom after the dentist appointment, and he polished it right off. If you've never eaten a cold Quarter Pounder... uh, never do. Answering "no" to that question speaks well of your life choices.

* We brought home nuggets for Chicken, and she took great delight in sitting with the cat in her lap and feeding him pieces of nugget. This is Gordie, the cat who used to swipe lunchmeat from the sandwiches I made to send the kids to school with. That cat hates my guts, but GLORY will he eat anything we set in front of him.

*  This is nice-- I tweeted something about how I knew people were stressed about politics because most of my feed was cute animals... and suddenly people were sending me adorable animals on my FB feed! (My Twitter bleeds into my FB automatically... handy that.)  So I took a picture of Johnnie, just because he was the only animal in my house who would sit still while I focused the camera.

*  I went down for a nap this afternoon and woke up because Newt-Dewey (also known as Sweetie Baby Honeyface) was staring at me from close range. As in MUAH! close range. Fucking cat. I prefer him when he's patting the dog's heads as they poke up under the blankets.

And that's the end! *yawn* Only a few more words to go!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Manny Get Your Guy-- Coming Soon


Manny Get Your Guy

by Amy Lane


The Mannies

Starting over and falling in love.

Tino Robbins’s sister, Nica, and her husband, Jacob, are expecting their fifth child. Fortunately, Nica’s best friend, Taylor Cochran, is back in town, released from PT and in need of a job.

After years in the service and recovering from grave injury, Taylor has grown a lot from the callow troublemaker he’d been in high school. Now he’s hoping for a fresh start with Nica and her family.

Jacob’s cousin Brandon lives above the garage and thinks “Taylor the manny” is a bad idea. Taylor might be great at protecting civilians from a zombie apocalypse, but is he any good with kids?

Turns out, Taylor’s a natural. As he tries to fit in, using common sense and dry wit, Brandon realizes that Taylor doesn’t just love their family—he’s desperate to be part of it. And just like that, Brandon wants Taylor to be part of his future.

*  *  *

So... Manny Get Your Guy is coming out on July 1st--this is Taylor's story and if you read The Virgin Manny, you remember Taylor. He was the junior league dominator who kept coming on to Tino even though he hadn't come out yet to Tino's sister, Nica.

Well, jump ahead ten years--Nica and Jacob are on their fifth kid--five kids, five failed kinds of birth control--and yes, I knew a couple of families just like that. Including one that blew through condoms and the pill in one good bang.  But Nica and Jakey are very much in love, and all they need is a little help. Some of the help they're getting from Jakey's cousin Brandon, who lives over the garage and takes on building an addition to the house so baby number five can fit. Some of the help comes from Taylor, who has been in town for a little while after getting out of the military, but who hasn't really reintroduced himself to the family because he's embarrassed. He was sort of an asshole before he deployed, and he's not sure how well they'll take his return.

They take his return pretty well--but five kids is a handful, and watching Taylor deal with Nica's kids turns out to be highly amusing. For me, anyway, because the oldest three are stinkers, the youngest one's a doll, and the one in the oven is giving the family fits.

I mean, kids. Families with kids. Accidental pregnancies and being stupid in high school and growing up and figuring out life. It's messy and mesmerizing all at once--and ever so much fun.

Anyway-- this series was going to be a one off, and then my editor and I had a giggle/snort over potential titles, and it became a trilogy.  The third one is Sammy's story-- he's the fractious little boy in the first one, but he's fully grown at twenty-one by the time his own shot at love rolls around. (He's seventeen in this one and has a sort of understated crush on Brandon, but Brandon tells him--kindly--that he's too young.)

And then I penned Dustin, who's Nica's oldest, and a real little prick. And Quinn, who shows up near the end of Sammy's story, and turns out to be a really decent guy, and I had a thought of Dustin and Quinn meeting at a family wedding, and Quinn pulling the "Older relative" thing on Dustin and pissing him off. And then, about ten years later...

So there's going to be four stories in all, and this is the second. The third was supposed to be coming out in January, (it's been done for two months) but there was some internal push/pull with the schedule for various (good and exciting) reasons, so it might not be coming out for a year. And I don't know where that leaves the fourth one--but we'll see what we can do.

But they're happy and family and potato chip eating and NOM.

Enjoy.