Today, I'm pleased to provide you with a guest post from Leah Braemel, a fellow Carina author, who wrote the torrid, contemporary erotic novel Texas Tangle--which has received some equally sizzling reviews!
Due to my total inability to cut'n paste a google doc. into Blogger, I've had to type her post--just so you know that any typos are mine. (But if someone could tell me how to manage it, I'd appreciate it!)
Until I was ten I lived in towns around eight or ten thousand people. Enough that you had a little space around you but small enough that everyone knew your business. Then when I was ten we moved to the country. We moved to a rural area that only the year before finally consolidated all its one room school houses into a single school of sixteen classes! I think there were about six surnames in the township when we moved in, families who had lived there for over a hundred years and everyone was related to everyone else. There were no secrets in that township. None.
Now this was back in the days before texting or email. Back then they still had the old telephone system where when you picked up the phone you didn't dial, the operator came on and you asked for the person by name, then you'd add their version of the person's "ring tone." As in "Hi, Lizzy, can you connect me with Patti Smith over at 3894--they're three long, two short." Anywhere up to ten or twelve families shared the same phone line, so each house had a specific ring to identify who the call was for. Two long rings followed by a short might mean it was for the Strong family a half a mile down. Two long with no short meant Old Len was getting his weekly call from his brother. You know, the brother who had a thorn in his foot and moved from the family farm all those years back? Yup, he was a real wanderer--yup, his brother Dale moved to a farm on the line (road) a mile and a quarter north. Then there was the scandal of when my friend Bob came home to find his wife had up and left him. Not only that but she'd completely trashed their house--she'd taken everything they owned, smashed or destroyed what she didn't want or couldn't take, stopped up the sink and left the water running, taken everything from the fridge (ketchup, mustard, jelly, you name it) and dumped it over every single carpet in the house, then smashed all the plants and ground the dirt from them in on the top. That tale blew through the grapevine faster than a wildfire.
Unless you wanted everyone to know your deepest secrets you had to keep your conversation short and bland because everyone and their brother could--and did--listen in. Before you think I was raised with Laura Ingalls in a little house on the prairie, we're talking early seventies here. Nineteen seventies that is.
Since I'd set Texas Tangle in a fictional rural community in the fictional Barnett County in Texas, I figured country life would probably be the same everywhere. Everyone knows everyone else's business in barnett county, same as my little corner of rural Ontario. Living with the gossip and the whispers about everything they did, especially if they were in a permanent relationship between three people, would have to be taken into consideration by my characters.
Eventually, like all of us, you just have to decide if you're going to live your life based on what other people think. it was a great source of conflict, both external and internal for my characters.
Somedays I'm really glad I live in a city where I don't even know my neighbor's names...
Thanks to her cheating ex-husband and her theiving brother, all horse breeder Nikki Kimball has left is a bruised heart, an over-drawn bank account and an empty home. When sex-on-legs Dillon Barnett and his brooding foster-brother Brett Anderson start showing more than just neighborly attention, Nikki is intrigued...and a little gun-shy.
Dillon and Brett have a history; back in high school, the two friends fought a bitter battle over Nikki. Now, then years later, Brett still longs to be the man in Nikki's life, but he's determined to stand back and let Dillon win Nikki's heart.
Society says Nikki must choose between the two men she loves. Is Nikki strong enough to break all the rules and find happiness?
It's very frustrating but Blogger ( or google doc.) doesn't wish to co-operate regarding the links which Leah provided for excerpts and a download of the first chapter, but you can find them at her blog here.