Please help us welcome author Alicia Nordwell, who’s here to help us celebrate our 5th Blogiversary! She’s sharing an exclusive excerpt and giveaway of her new holiday romance, Disastertastic.
I wanted to join in the fun of congratulating The Novel Approach on their Five Year Blogiversary!! The internet has brought so many people together in new ways within the world of fiction. Authors, readers, reviewers all meet within the virtual expanse… and The Novel Approach has been an integral part of that over the years.
It’s fun to share in these events, because while I’ve been writing m/m fiction since 2009 and published my first eBook sometime in 2012, I couldn’t give you exact dates. It’s overwhelming how much things have changed just since then, though, and if it weren’t for all the wonderful people who make up the m/m fiction community I don’t think I would’ve made it. We need each other, and I’m happy to be part of celebrating The Novel Approach’s five years being an integral part of all that today.
Speaking of success… My giveaway has to do with the success or failure of one character’s plan to bring Christmas to life. When Kraig learns Sawyer doesn’t celebrate Christmas—simply because his family never has believed in the frivolous nature of the holiday—he sets out to show him what lies behind the commercialized version. But date after date meant to share the magic Kable feels every year goes wrong, and Sawyer just might not get his first Merry Christmas.
Holidays gone haywire is the theme behind my novella where Sawyer learning the true meaning of Christmas might not seem possible. But it is possible to win your own eBook copy as my giveaway for The Novel Approach’s Blogiversary!
Sawyer thought Kable might lead him from behind, his hands on his shoulders, but instead he twined their hands together and walked slightly in front of him. He wasn’t completely comfortable with a lot of affection in public, but he liked that Kable was willing to hold his hand around other people.
He stumbled when the toe of his boot hit the curb, but Kable swung him around and pulled him against his chest, keeping Sawyer safely on his feet.
“Shit, sorry!” Kable held him close, and Sawyer liked it a lot even though there were probably scandalized shoppers all around them. He could feel Kable’s warm breath puffing against his cheeks.
“It’s fine,” Sawyer said. “Probably shouldn’t be cursing around children though. Doesn’t seem very holiday-like.” He could hear some young, excited voices, and they didn’t sound that far away.
“No angry moms are staring me down. I think we’re fine.” Kable brushed a chilly thumb across Sawyer’s cheek under his eye. “You didn’t even open your eyes.”
“You said not to.”
Kable’s finger warmed as he kept stroking. “So literal,” he said quietly. He pulled away but kept ahold of Sawyer’s hand. “Just a few more steps.”
A bell tinkled, and then the sweetest scent drifted around him. Sawyer paused and took a deep breath. “Mmm.” He could smell the yeasty goodness of fresh bread, chocolate, and the sweet scent of sugar and icing, combining in a heady mix that nearly made him drool. Just because Sawyer didn’t eat sugary snacks very often didn’t mean he didn’t like some sweets.
“You can open your eyes now.”
They were in a shop full of every sort of treat Sawyer could imagine and many he couldn’t name. The whole place was full of food. A woman stood behind a counter whipping up coffees for a short line, and a few other people were browsing the goods filling shelves that lined the shop walls or sitting at tables enjoying their purchases. “What are we doing here?”
“Well, I figured since you’d never had eggnog before, you’d probably missed out on a lot of holiday treats. Chelsea, a friend who used to work at the restaurant, works here as a pastry chef, but she makes some of the holiday candies too. She got permission from the owner to give us a private tasting event and then teach us how to make a batch of the candy you like the best to take home.”
“We’re going to eat this stuff?” Sawyer looked around. “But we haven’t had dinner yet.”
“But that’s the best part of the holidays. Dessert first! You can eat whatever you want in December and then use your New Year’s Resolution to make up for it.”
Sawyer snorted. “I don’t think that is a great method of calorie control.”
“Oh come on, you’re young! You’re a guy! We can eat anything, right?”
Kable had gone to a lot of trouble to give Sawyer a taste of something new, literally, and they were even going to make something together. “I’ve never made candy before. My mom didn’t believe kids should be allowed to eat processed sugar. The whole addiction thing, rotting teeth, and ruined metabolism were her favorite subjects on Halloween.”
“Why am I not surprised?” Kable rolled his eyes. “Well you can make up for twenty-one years of moderation, then.” He wrapped an arm around Sawyer’s shoulders and pulled him over to a corner of the bakery where the Christmas decorations turned a cute little nook with a small table and two chairs into a gingerbread cottage.
The display case was full of all sorts of things. One cake looked like a log with leaves and berries, but the end was cut off to show a spiral of white filling inside. There were cupcakes shaped like snowmen, gingerbread squares, white, dark, and milk chocolates in all different shapes, and rows and rows of cookies: shaped and frosted sugar cookies, chocolate with mint chips, snickerdoodles decorated with red and green sugar, and a bunch of cookies with names Sawyer couldn’t hope to pronounce.
And the candy! He read the different tags, amazed there were so many different kinds just for Christmas. Homemade peppermints in sticks and ribbons, hard candies in a rainbow of colors, caramels, divinity, fruit and nut nougat… and a lot of fudge. Sawyer stared, unsure of what to start with.
“There’s no way I can try all this. I’d pop!”
Kable laughed. “You should see your face. Ever heard that phrase, like a kid in a candy store?”
About the Book
Sawyer is too busy to worry about something as frivolous as Christmas. College is hard, but he’s focused on getting into law school. Kable is studying to make the family business, Del Buon Gusto, into a successful chain restaurant. When a party debacle at the restaurant gives Kable a chance to get close to Sawyer, he’s shocked to learn Sawyer’s a Christmas Grinch. He’s determined to change Sawyer’s mind, but their dates are one debacle after another. It might not be possible to make this into Sawyer’s first Merry Christmas after all.
About the Author
The number one question folks ask Alicia when she shares she’s a MM romance author: “Why gay fiction? Why write men when you’re a woman?” and her answer is: “Why the hell not!” Alicia Nordwell is one of those not so rare creatures, a reader turned writer. Striving to find an interesting story one day, she decided to write what she wanted instead. Then the voices started… Yep, not only does she talk about herself in the third person for bios, she has voices in her head constantly clamoring to get out. Fortunately, with the encouragement of her family and friends, she decided for her own sanity to keep writing.
Now you can find her stories both free and e-published. When she’s not on the computer typing away, she’s a wife and a mom of two in the dreary, yet ideal for her redhead complexion, Pacific Northwest. Except for when she disappears into one of the many worlds in her head, of course! She can also be found quite often at her blog, where she has a lot of free fiction for readers to enjoy or working hard, or maybe hardly working, as an admin on GayAuthors.org under her online nickname, Cia.