Today I am so pleased to welcome Sarah Hadley Brook to Joyfully Jay. Sarah has come to talk to us about her latest release, The Twisted Oak. She has also brought along an exclusive excerpt and a copy to give away! Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
Daily Life vs. Writing
When I set out to finally sit down and write a book, I had wonderful, grandiose plans! I planned my writing time nearly down to the minute, allowing time for research, word sprinting, planning, editing…. Oh, the plans I had! You can see where this is going, right?
That old adage about the best laid plans is so true! No matter how dedicated I was to keeping that schedule, life got in the way. Well, the kids (grown and in their twenties, but still…) the day job… I could go on and on. Something seemed to always get in the way. But I persevered, trying to keep to the schedule as best I could.
And then—BAM!—I became the primary caretaker to my parents due to their declining health. I’ll be honest, that was a hard adjustment. Writing romance and erotica is difficult while your cats are begging for “second breakfast” (spoiler alert: I don’t overfeed them, but they have learned my stepdad will give them food anytime they meow), you’re putting together a presentation for the day job, and your mother is asking you to help her remove her cardigan because she’s hot. This would be the same cardigan she wanted to wear five minutes prior due to feeling cold. Trust me, it’s a vicious cycle!
Life certainly has a sense of humor. I admit, last year my writing slowed down and I became much more relaxed about it. Don’t get me wrong, when I stick to my schedule, I get a lot done and feel great about it. But I finally realized I couldn’t control everything. Not even my own life sometimes. Now I tend to fluctuate between a strict schedule when life allows it and a more lackadaisical attitude when I have run out of steam. However, I do make sure I write every day- even if it’s five minutes. I think of it as “prep” for when I am ready to delve into another long stretch of writing.
Do I wish I could write full time? I love my day job, but there are days I wish I was home writing. Who knows, maybe someday I’ll leave the day job and write, but like I said before, life has a sense of humor. Who knows where it will take me?
Wade’s brow furrowed and he leaned forward, bracing his hands on the coffee table. “We need to talk.” His whispered words came out harshly and everyone looked at him.
Lance shrugged, wondering what was going on in Wade’s head now. “Sure.”
Lance stood and gestured for him to lead the way.
As soon as they were alone, Wade turned and stepped into Lance’s space. “You didn’t say anything about moving in.”
Lance’s eyes widened in surprise. “I assumed you realized that. I mean, we can’t be married and live apart.” Surely Wade understood that.
Wade frowned. “I…I’m not sure…shit, this is kind of freaking me out. Aren’t you even a little freaked out?”
He shrugged, his eyes on Wade. His hair was still damp and a mess from the ride. The man had always worn his hair a little shaggy, but it looked longer. He fought the urge to finger the strands to see if they were as silky as they looked. “You’ve grown your hair out a little since I last saw you.” His voice was a little rougher than he intended.
Wade raised an eyebrow. “That’s your response? My hair is longer?”
Lance held up his hands. “What do you want me to say? I’m not freaked out.”
Wade stepped back and ran his own hand through his hair. “Why?”
“Why what?” Lance asked, perplexed.
“Why aren’t you freaking out? What straight man is okay with marrying a gay man to help him circumvent a clause in a will? It doesn’t make sense.”
Lance gaped, his eyes round. “You mean…you don’t really think…fuck,” he stammered. “I always assumed Casey told you.”
“Told me what?” Lance smiled, understanding dawning. His heart raced as he stepped closer to Wade, his hands itching to touch him. He licked his lips and met Wade’s gaze.
“You’re not marrying a straight man,” he whispered and gave him a smile before he turned on his heels and started to walk out of the kitchen. One glance over his shoulder told him he’d just upended Wade’s world.
Wade Dwyer’s life is turned upside down when his father dies and he learns he must marry or he and his siblings will lose the ranch. One last jab of the knife from his father. On top of that, his father’s only friend knows about the stipulation and is determined to own the property by any means necessary.
He’s facing the very real possibility of being the reason his family loses their home when his brother’s best friend, Lance Matthews, offers to walk down the aisle with him. A faux marriage to the man he’s loved for years is a torture he isn’t sure he can endure.
Can he keep the ranch … and the man of his dreams, too?
Sarah Hadley Brook reserves her evenings for her hobby-turned-passion of writing, letting the characters she conjures up in her mind take the lead and show her where the story will go. She dreams of traveling to Scotland some day and visiting the places her ancestors lived. Sarah believes in “happily ever after” and strives to ensure her characters find their own happiness in love and life.
Sarah has brought a copy of The Twisted Oak to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Sunday, March 15th at 11:59 pm ET.
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