I’ve written a lot of books. They’ve been set in small Florida towns with mystical histories, in South Jersey college towns, in senior citizen communities in central Florida, in New Orleans, in a small farming community west of Savannah, Georgia, and even in San Francisco circa 1967.
But when Fifty Frogs came to me, it clearly took place much closer to home . . . in my own backyard, as a matter of fact. Quite literally.
Now, don’t get me wrong. This story happens in other areas of the small central Florida town of Summer Meadows as well, but some of the key scenes take place just outside my back door.
What’s odd is that usually, when I’m deep in a story, I live in that setting. I can tell you details about it, how it’s laid out, all the subtle nuances. But this time, I felt a bit like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz; I didn’t have to go any further than my own backyard.
I love living on a lake, and so does Vivian. I’m blessed to spend many evenings sitting by the water, enjoying a pre-dinner drink or post-dinner coffee with my husband. It’s peaceful and lovely and very romantic.
Of course, there are a few little drawbacks . . . and some of them come in the form of critters. Vivian runs into one in particular. Oddly, we hadn’t seen any of this particular creature around our yard in reality until after I wrote Vivian’s scene–but we have since. Perhaps fiction informed real life!
But I do know one thing for sure: I’ll always think of Vivian and Charlie when I glance over to the bench in the adjacent yard . . .
Yes, I’m literally
HANGING BY A MOMENT
waiting for this release.
Book 2 of the Keeping Score Trilogy
comes out May 24th,
and I can’t wait.
So since it’s #TeaserTuesday, I thought I’d give you a little sneak peek.
“Babe, you awake?” Leo’s voice was low and husky, murmuring against my ear.
I snuggled a little closer to him. “Mmmmm. Kind of.” My bedroom was dark except for the faint glow of the streetlight just outside. Tonight, for the first time all week, I hadn’t dropped right off to sleep after I’d laid my head on Leo’s broad chest.
“I talked to my mom a little bit tonight before they all left.” His fingers moved in small circles on my upper arm. “She didn’t push, but she suggested I give you and your mother some space tomorrow. She said you two need to talk about some stuff and make decisions.”
Panic welled up inside me, and it was on the tip of my tongue to argue. But I knew deep down that Leo couldn’t stay glued to my side forever. We both had to figure out what was going to come next for us, just like my mom and I had to do the same.
“Yeah.” I swallowed hard. “She’s probably right.” I turned a little, resting my chin on Leo’s sternum, staring up into his face. “But don’t go far, okay? I’m not sure I’m ready to go cold turkey on my Leo addiction.”
He brushed his hand over my hair. “If it’ll make you feel better, I’ll sit in the car outside, just in case you need me.”
I sniffed. “You don’t have to do that. Maybe after breakfast, you could just go home for a little bit.”
“That works.” He crunched up, bending so that his lips could reach the top of my head. “Hey, Mia? We haven’t really talked about anything serious yet. I mean, about us. But I wanted to say this now, before anything goes any further.”
Trepidation gripped my gut. “I’m not sure I’m ready to deal with this.”
“Babe, no.” Leo slid me off him, rolling to lay on his side so that our faces were close together. “Nothing bad. I just wanted to say . . . I love you, Mia. I didn’t say it to you last week. I hoped you understood it, but I thought I better be clear. I love you. I loved you before, and I never stopped.”
I traced his jaw with one finger. “I love you, too, Leo. Still. Always. Forever.”
He released a breath as though he’d been holding it. “Okay. Good.”
I frowned. “Did you doubt that I did? That I do?”
“No, not really.” He nuzzled my neck. “But I wasn’t sure if you were ready to deal with me again. I know you needed me this week, but I was afraid once things started to settle down, you’d think that maybe I wasn’t worth the effort.”
Following my finger with my lips, I kissed his chin. “You’re worth everything, Leo. And I hate that it took my dad—what happened, I mean, to get us back together, but I’m not going to have any regrets anymore. Loving you is part of me, and so are you. I wouldn’t have made it through this week without you.” I paused, enjoying the feel of the late-night scruff on his neck. “That first day, before you got here, I wanted to die, too. It hurt so bad, and I felt like nothing was ever going to be right again. But then you came to me, and I’ll never forget that you were here for me.”
“I always will be.” He tipped up my chin and kissed my lips, softly. “Nothing in my life works without you.”
Want MORE? You can read a sample chapter here . . .
And if you preorder, the full book will show up magically in your ereader next week!
If you haven’t read WHEN WE WERE US yet, grab it now so you’re ready for next week!
Welcome to New Adult Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was inspired as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors…and a chance to win some awesome prizes! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 72 hours!
Go to the New Adult Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are THREE contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the TEAM PURPLE–but there is also a red team and a blue team for a chance to win two different sets of books!
If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the New Adult Scavenger Hunt page.
LET THE HUNT BEGIN!
I’m happy to be hosting author Jessica Ruddick.
Jessica Ruddick lives in Virginia and is married to her college sweetheart–their first date was a fraternity toga party (and nothing inspires love like a toga, right?). When she doesn’t have her nose in a book or her hands on a keyboard, she can be found wrangling her two rambunctious sons, taming two rowdy but lovable rescue dogs, and battling the herd of dust bunnies that has taken up residence in her home. LETTING GO and WANTING MORE are Entangled Embrace releases, and she has a forthcoming romantic suspense release with St. Martin’s Swerve under her pen name, Jessica Linden. To learn more about Jessica, please visit her websites atwww.jessicaruddick.com and www.jessicalinden.net.
Today she’s sharing some exclusive content from her book WANTING MORE (A Love on Campus novel).
Bri Welch likes to play it safe. I don’t. She’s wound tight, and I’m all about a good party. But there’s something about her that makes me want to pull those uptight layers away one-by-delicious-one. But the worst thing is she makes me want more… I can’t stop wanting her…
In Wanting More, Josh plays guitar. Below are some of the songs he plays in the book.
“Little Lion Man,” by Mumford and Sons
“Dust in the Wind,” Kansas
“Landslide,” Fleetwood Mac
In the end of the book, Josh composes his own song. (I don’t want to give away any spoilers, so you’ll have to read the book to find out the context of the song.) These two songs are sort of what I had in mind, though.
“Thinking Out Loud,” Ed Sheeran
“In Your Eyes,” Jeffrey Gaines
I LOVE this music–and can’t wait to read the book! Don’t forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of signed books by Jessica Ruddick, me and many others!
To enter, you need to know that my lucky book number is 9 .
Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on Team Purple and you’ll have the secret code to enter for the grand prize!
And for a chance to win even more, enter the rafflecopter below.
To keep going on your quest for the hunt, you need to check out the next author, Tellulah Darling.
Surprise! Some authors friends and I have put together this awesome sale to get you through these rainy April days.
Over fifty 99 cent and FREE books!
Can you believe it?
It’s one day only so be sure to snap them up today atwww.romancereadscentral.com!
xoxox Happy reading!!