Happy Release Day!
It has been a long time coming, but I hope it is well worth the wait. Practical Research, the first in the Research Series of novels I have penned with Essemoh Teepee, has gone live today. It is always a magical moment to see new work become available.
What took so long, you ask? Well, first, there is the actual writing of the novel. Which as some of you know can go fairly quickly on some days and not so fast on others. Then there is the dynamic of writing with a partner. My first time, so Essemoh gets the ‘partner’ cherry ;-) A ‘seat of the pants’ writer or pantser, I do not normally do an outline for my stories, but in this case it was important to know the direction we were heading, so we could prepare for what the other was sending next. The research – one of my favorite parts of the process can also take some time especially if one gets distracted …What do you mean Pinterest is not the best spot to learn about…
Covers, blurbs, TOC, epub files, promo and of course, the dreaded editing! You would think with two working on the process it would go quicker, but not always the case. And you know the old adage; ‘you never have a second chance to make a first impression.’ Thankfully Essemoh is a little more patient than I, and very persuasive when it comes to getting it right.
The good news is that the second in the series; Captivating Research is already completed and ready for editing and the third installment: Academic Research is in progress.
The Research Series is a humorous sexy look at a very unconventional romance that twists some obvious clichés. Join the adventure of Callista, her beloved Professor-Anbu, Bruna,the sexy voodoo priestess and the ever affable Chad as they see just how much trouble they can get into in the name of pleasure.
Enjoy an excerpt from Practical Research here:
Callista pounded on Chad’s door for the third time. She hated to use her key in case he had company. She dug through her purse looking for her phone to call him and then remembered that she only had the new one Anbu gave her. That is so weird, making me give up my phone, what could the purpose be? I understand he needs me to be close by so living at his place will be convenient, as well as luxurious, but what is it with the phone and controlling who I speak with and when? He is paying me really well, but it’s not like he owns me!
Dropping the useless phone back in her bag, she unlocked her apartment and began to get her affairs in order. All her finances were manageable online and Chad would take care of her plants and mail. She wouldn’t have time to sub-let, but Anbu had said he was taking care of the rent. She really should dump the place. She sent off a few emails to friends telling them she had an internship out of the country and would have limited Internet access. Why am I lying?
She called her parents, they were thrilled she had an opportunity to work with the esteemed Professor Anbarasan Dahl; of course they weren’t privy to the project details. Although they were disappointed she wouldn’t be home for the summer, they knew it would further her career. She promised to write to them at least once, all of them knowing it was an empty promise she had made many times before.
She tried Chad again from the house phone and got no answer. She left a voicemail explaining she did not have her phone and to come over immediately. The day was slipping away and she sat with cup of tea staring at the empty suitcase wondering what she would take to Anbu’s. Sadly, she couldn’t seem to think of anything that seemed important to her. She shoved the case back under her bed, grabbed a photo of her with her parents at the lake and another of her and Chad dressed up for her friend’s medieval inspired wedding.
She put them in her Mary Poppins bag and went to take a shower.
Pulling her fuzzy robe around her, for once she was grateful her apartment was small and easy to keep warm. Maybe she would take the robe with her—and her favorite pillow. Slipping her arms in, she pulled it across her body.
“Jeez, Chad! You scared the crap out of me. Doesn’t anyone respect my privacy anymore?”
“Excuse me… I am not the one who left twelve SOS messages and, from Mrs. Weinstein’s complaints, been pounding on my door all day.”
“Oh, Chaddie,” Callista wrapped her arms around her friend and held on for dear life.” I’ve really done it this time.”
“Do tell! I know you didn’t come home last night…Mrs. Weinstein told me. I swear that woman is CIA trained! Did you get a little after school detention with the Professor? Please tell me Calli was a naughty girl?”
“Not exactly, how much time have you got?”
“Well, we have about an hour.”
“We’re going out. Dinner, drinks and then the ‘Bare as you Dare’ party”.
“The what as you …?”
“Just a bunch of good looking, sweaty men and women in very little clothing.”
“Please? What about all the museums and chick flicks you drag me to?” Callista had to agree with him there, and smiled at him as he went on. “It will be fun. You can let your hair down a little.”
“Oh, Chad, I’m afraid I’ve let more than my hair down.”
“Sure, whatever. Now, let’s see what you have to wear.”
“Not much,” she glanced at her new dress hanging on a hook in the corner.
“I wasn’t looking for you... What’s this?” he asked peeling up the plastic bag over the leather dress.
Callista smacked his hand, “Leave it, it’s a surprise. Now get out and let me dress, Oh and Chad be prepared to be dazzled.”
She peered into the mirror closer trying desperately to find herself there. The black leather corset top pushed her breasts up into mounds that made them seem much bigger and the snug short skirt was made of such soft and supple leather it clung to her hips like a second skin. She let her naturally thick hair go wild and free, letting it down just as both Anbu and Chad had said she should, knowing they both meant something entirely different.
“Who is this woman?” Callista wondered aloud and wiped a little of the scarlet stain from her lips.
“Holy shit, girl! You look hot.”
“Chad! Is it too much, should I change?”
“I think you already have. Almost makes we wish I was straight. Well, not really.”
Callista pulled at the skirt trying to hide the band of her stockings and smiled. It reminded her of just a few days ago when she had first met Anbu.
“You have that dreamy look, Calli—you are freaking me out. Where is my, ‘always got it together’ kinda girl?”
“Sometimes I just get tired of being in control, you know? Maybe I just want someone else to be in charge for a while.” Callista looked at Chad in an adorable sailor suit, his shorts just covering his bottom, the white knee socks vivid against his tanned legs and giggled. “Well, I guess I can manage to keep it together for one more night, c’mon girlie lets have some fun.”
Chad insisted they splurge and celebrate Callista’s new job. Dinner at Aziza on Geary was as good as they expected. Callista gave Chad the run down on what had happened so far and in his over the top way, he did little to quell the doubts racing through her head. The Cocktails were amazing and Chad kept ordering Wild Arugula’s to fuel the conversation.
“Just go for it, you might have fun. Besides you need the money and it’s a lot better than slinging hash for the summer.”
“I know but he just makes me feel so…”
“So, what—sexual? C’mon Calli, isn’t it about time you let go of the past. You’re going to dry up and become the cat lady.”
“No! I am not. I just want to be sure I don’t put myself in the line of fire. I don’t want to be hurt.”
“None of us do, but unless you give it a try how will you know. Sometimes it doesn’t work out as we plan and it sucks, sometimes were glad when it doesn’t work out, but when it does—oh, nothing is better.”
“Like you and Justin?”
“Well, let’s not go there. Tonight isn’t about me.”
“Why don’t you call him? Pride goeth…”
“We’ll see. Tonight we don’t worry about Boo Boo or Justin
“Anbu, Boo Boo whatever. What kind of name is that anyway?”
“His mother is from an island…” Chad held his hand up and stood.
“And no detailed information on anything—just fun. Like a bachelorette party or I know, well pretend it’s my 21st birthday.”
“Where are we going to find a time machine, Chaddie?” The mock hurt look he gave her made her laugh.
* * *
Callista was still laughing as they left the restaurant. Chad stepped off the curb and lifted his hand for a cab. Then he started to shake his bottom and try and lift the hem of his shorts even higher. A couple of taxis passed by, one even accelerating away.
“Chad!” she screamed, in a fit of giggles, “Stop it. The cabs will never stop for you like that.”
“Then you try, if you think you’re so smart!”
“If you’ve got it, flaunt it babe.” Callista stepped off the curb and handed Chad her jacket. She spread her stance wide and slowly raised her arm, inadvertently lifting the hem of her already short skirt, even higher. The screeching tires of the next taxi could be heard for blocks as the driver pulled to a smoking stop in front of Callista.
“And that’s how it’s done, my friend.” She said before sauntering to the door. The cab driver ogled her and nodded in appreciation before she slid in the back seat.