Today I am so pleased to welcome Sean Michael to Joyfully Jay. Sean has come to talk to us about her latest release, Making It Work, a Mannies Incorporated Novel. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving Sean a big welcome!
The More the Merrier
Making it Work is my latest Mannies Incorporated novel. I always love writing these, but I have to admit that this one took a little more work than usual. I don’t always make a story bible, but I couldn’t have made do without this one. Two widowed dads. Two mannies. Eight kids in all. That’s a lot of people to keep track of.
There’s twelves names to remember just for the main set of characters. Lots of nicknames. Ages, interests, personalities, how they interact with each other, who cut their knee and who got grounded for hitting their sister, etc and etc and etc times 12!
I say it’s more work, but it was totally fun, too. And I got to explore different dynamics in this one compared to the other mannies books, so it was neat not to have the power imbalance be an issue in this one.
I really do love writing the mannies books, and I’m excited to be able to share this one with you.
smut fixes everything
Park glanced at his watch. Grif, Mike, and the kids would be home at any moment, depending on what customs had been like. They were taking a limo home, which he figured was going to be fun for the kids. He really hoped they’d spent the last ten days getting to know each other and liking each other.
Hopefully they’d done better than he and Rand had. They’d fallen into an uneasy truce that he had a hunch would last until the first argument between the kids that they had to break up.
They hadn’t actually seen all that much of each other. Rand was tired from his drive and had spent a lot of time in his room, and had also had a marathon four-hour session with the landscaper. There were plants and flowers everywhere around the house now. Park thought they were a nice addition—he was just glad keeping them alive wasn’t anywhere near his list of responsibilities.
He’d walked by the man’s bedroom, shocked at the color and change that Rand had wrought in just a few hours. It was like an entirely different space. It kind of matched what he looked like with the piercings and the hair and the rope sandals.
He wondered what that long hair looked like when it was loose… He shook himself. Rand wasn’t his type. Hell, he hadn’t had a date since well before Blue had died.
He went to the front window, looking out at the long, tree-lined drive. It was still empty. He was more than ready to see his kids. More than.
Rand came through the room, texting madly, muttering to himself.
“They’ll be here soon,” he noted out loud. “We’ll never hear the house this quiet again.
“They’re about five minutes out. Apparently Risa and Penny are going to beat each other to death and everyone’s money is on Penny. Josie hasn’t stopped crying in two days, and Milly started sucking her thumb again.”
“Christ. Who’s your snitch?”
“Mike. Sounds like it was a rough holiday. Although Lon and Ber spent the entire time playing video games, and Rommy and Carrie had a ball.”
“Yeah, I expect Rommy and Carrie are going to be fast friends until they hit puberty. And I admit, I was hoping getting together at the beach would help get them on the same page.” He figured the next couple months were going to be damn hard. Hell, he and Rand had gotten off to a shit start, and their current peace was very fragile.
“They’ll figure it out. We’ll have a little yoga time and breathe together.”
“I heard about yoga. I was told my hellions had a hard time finding their center when they went down to visit.” He’d been reading up on yoga and it wasn’t a terrible thing—good exercise and it could be quite calming. His kids would sit through it if he told them they had to. “We’ll have to try it here—maybe in the sunroom?” They had a fully windowed sunroom/balcony thing off the kitchen.
“That works. I practice three times a day.”
Three times? That seemed a little extreme for three to fourteen-year-olds. “Well, I’ll make sure the kids make it to one a day.” He heard the sound of the limousine coming up the lane and he grinned. “There they are!”
“Indeed. Spoiled amazing beasts.” Rand’s smile was warm, eager.
Park opened the door, going out to greet them. The doors at the far end of the vehicle opened up and all the kids spilled out. Rommy and Milly were the first in his arms, but the other three weren’t far behind, and he gathered them into a five-kid hug.
God, his kids. “I missed you guys, so much.”
“Us too. Us too.” Milly was crying a little. “It was hard, Parkie.”
“You lived through it, though, Mills, didn’t you? That means you’re stronger now.” He wiped the tears from her cheeks and gave her a warm smile. “And now you have the gorgeous new house to explore.”
“But I have to share a room with Penny! She’s so mean,” Risa interrupted.
“Hey, she’s had to move all the way from Texas to a new country. You only moved houses.”
“And schools,” she whined, tiredness clear in her eyes.
“That’s not for weeks yet. It’s going to be fine, I promise you. We all just need to get used to the new people.”
Two little white-blonde girls and a fiercely made-up bald teenager stood around Rand, and he overheard, “We’ll all just move in with you, huh?”
Mike and Grif got out of the car, looking ten years older than they had ten days ago. He could have told them a ten-day vacation with all the kids together for the first time without the mannies was going to be trouble. But it hadn’t been his place. Grif had been so excited about it.
“Lon, how about you introduce me to the girls?”
“You’ve met them. There’s Carrie, Geeky, and the Bitch.”
Penny looked over at him, glaring, as the middle girl began to cry again. “I will cut your balls off, London Bridge.”
“Peace. Peace, now. I brought the projector, you know?” Rand murmured.
“When can we go home, Rand?” the little one asked. “Soon? I’m tired and I want my own room back.”
“We are home now, sweetie.”
Before anyone could say anything else, Park interrupted the flow of conversation. “London, you apologize to Josie and Penny. You do not talk to anyone that way, especially girls, especially when those girls are your new sisters.”
London pinched his lips together tight and remained stubbornly quiet.
“Okay, then. You can go to your room until you’re ready to apologize.”
London glared, but stomped away.
He grabbed the back of London’s shirt. “Leave me your phone and there will be no other electronics allowed.”
Parker has been Manny to Grif and Blue’s kids ever since the twins were first born. Fourteen years later, he’s caring for five kids and Grif is now a widower. Everything is about to change again for Park and his charges, though, as Grif is marrying a man with three girls of his own and the new family is moving to a big house they’ve built just outside of Ottawa.
Rand has been with his family since fifteen-year-old Josie was little, and he now finds himself transplanted from Austin, Texas to Ottawa, Canada when his charges’ father, Mike, marries Grif. Coming to a new house in a new country with a new blended family, he’s determined to make sure that even though they’ve been uprooted, his girls still have everything they want and need.
What could go wrong?
Park and Rand’s styles as mannies couldn’t be more different, the kids all hate each other on sight, and the newlywed fathers are busy honeymooning. It seems pretty clear the whole situation is a recipe for disaster. Can everyone find their place in this brand new family, including both mannies? And will Park and Rand ever see eye to eye on anything? The answer surprises even them.
Best-selling author Sean Michael is a maple leaf–loving Canadian who spends hours hiding out in used book stores. With far more ideas than time, Sean keeps several documents open at all times. From romance to fantasy, paranormal and sci-fi, Sean is limited only by the need for sleep—and the periodic Beaver Tail.
Sean fantasizes about one day retiring on a secluded island populated entirely by horseshoe crabs after inventing a brain-to-computer dictation system. Until then, Sean will continue to write the old-fashioned way.
Sean has brought a copy of the original Mannies Incorporated book to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Friday, December 30th at 11:59 pm EST.
- By entering the giveaway, you’re confirming that you are at least 18 years old.
- Winners will be selected by random number. No purchase necessary to win. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning.
- If you win, you must respond to my email within 48 hours or another winner may be chosen. Please make sure that your spam filter allows email from Joyfully Jay.
- Winners may be announced on the blog following the contest. By entering the contest you are agreeing to allow your name to be posted and promoted as the contest winner by Joyfully Jay.
- Prizes will be distributed following the giveaway either by Joyfully Jay or the person/organization donating the prize.
- All book prizes are in electronic format unless otherwise specified.
- By entering you are agreeing to hold Joyfully Jay harmless if the prize or giveaway in some way negatively impacts the winner.
- Readers may only enter once for each contest. Duplicate entries for the same giveaway will be ignored. In the event of technical problems with the blog during the contest, every effort will be made to extend the contest deadline to allow for additional entries.
- Void where prohibited by law.