Together Forever, book two in the Distant Shores series, will be available in Kindle and Paperback across all Amazon markets on November 27, 2017. Read on for details of how you can pre-order Together Forever now. But first here’s a reminder of the book’s blurb and cover…
Love. Commitment. Guilt? After reveling in blissful days together following the sweetest kiss, the long distance lovers part, but was Will and Lou’s untold long-held love and desire their only secret?
They have been each other’s rock for years, but will his subconscious reaction to an innocent photo of her and another woman spell the end? Or dare he reveal his feelings to his love?
Together Forever chronicles the challenges of long distance love, and how the couple fully open themselves to each other.
Pre-order Together Forever Now
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Together Forever, the second book in the Distant Shores series, is available now for pre-order on Amazon. To give you a taste of the novel, here’s Chapter One…
Together Forever Chapter One – Together Forever
It is true what they say about parting from those we love. It is such sweet sorrow. Whenever Lou was away from Will even for a short time, she missed him so acutely it caused physical pain. Settling into the prized window seat on the Boeing 767-3 at Chicago O’Hare International airport ahead of the final leg of her journey back to the UK, having left Will days earlier at Pittsburgh to head to the trade show which had triggered the longed-for trip, the pain was more acute than ever.
Turning toward the window as if to rest her head against his, she closed her eyes. Feeling his strong, loving, reassuring arms around her, as they had been at Pitt, cocooned in their own world amid the half asleep early morning throng, tears fell while the aircraft was pushed back.
With the aircraft gaining momentum, she drifted to the moment they met years earlier. While reading an informative piece he had written after succeeding her in the Editorship, she felt a spark unlike any other. And reading his thankful reply to her congratulatory note marking the publication of the piece, her face and soul were illumed by his trademark ‘grin.’ The word itself as expressive as the dazzling smile lighting his azure blue eyes in his mesmerizing social network profile photo.
Spending every possible minute together in the weeks that followed, Will’s zest for life, adoration for and pride in his family—and that gorgeous grin—were all pleasantly infectious.
Since then, they had shared so much across the emotional spectrum. Fun and laughter to the point of tears, but also those accompanying grief. The incredible strength of their bond lessened the pain, but neither denied the distance laid heavily in such anguished times.
Talking about anything and everything, they did not have secrets. With one exception—their true feelings for each other. Yes, they were unquestioningly sure of the other’s adoration. Their words and deeds spoke volumes without need for the classical “I love you,” including wordless glances via messaging app, when the ‘last seen’ notification said so much.
Yet their attraction, lust and passion remained unspoken until days earlier. Revealed beautifully in a tender kiss at the summit of the sundrenched mountainside trail. Then confirmed in a second firmer, but equally gentle kiss, before their passion and desire was laid bare in glorious technicolor when their tongues searched and found. Settling into her dream man’s arms on a blanket beneath the shade giving tree, Lou draped hers across his muscular chest. Gazing wordlessly into each other’s flaming eyes, it took a while to comprehend it was something else they shared.
Replaying the scene and those which followed, Lou gasped. Will had unknowingly brought her to mind blowing sensual release countless times over the years. But none of her fantasies came close to their new-found reality. How they managed to get through their dinner date a couple hours later is anybody’s guess! Reaching the privacy of suite 1133 at the ‘Riverside Hotel,’ the tsunami of lust overcame them. Each had made love to the other more times than they could count, and as Lou held the base of his engorged cock inches from her mouth, they knew their love would be consummated appropriately.
She had often dreamed of making love all night in a variety of positions, and so it came to be. After bringing Will an explosive climax deep in her throat, he gifted her a similarly powerful orgasm while displaying his oral prowess. Then, in the early hours of his birthday, they celebrated with an earth shattering simultaneous climax as she rode atop his steely shaft. And succumbing to the blissful mists, they slept entwined in each other’s arms.
Waking, his erection pressing into the valley between her buns was another dream come true, and collapsing onto her after claiming a birthday gift, Will confided she had made real another of his dreams. Now, her entire being tingled at the memory and she gasped as her body responded, and feeling the aircraft shudder a little, she clenched her jaw as tears welled.
Tearing herself from the events which followed, she traversed to the last evening of their vacation. Prior to her flight from Manchester Ringway, Will had done for her what she had so often done for him—checked the airline’s website for the gate numbers—and sat together on the couch ahead of her flight to Kansas, he did the same and wordlessly showed her his smartphone. Glancing from it into his eyes, she found them misted, mirroring her own, and dropping the device, they held one another close.
Taking a brief nap mid evening, ahead of a late room-service dinner, the final hours in their suite were spent blissfully. They were already up when their single alarm sounded at 3:30 am, drinking their last in person coffee for longer than either dare think about as their hearts pounded against each other’s ribs. Taking her hand, Will silently led her out onto the starlit balcony overlooking the river. Gazing toward it through the blackness, the lack of light echoed the heaviness in her heart, and as he clung to her, she knew he felt the same—neither wanted to leave. Pulling him closer, she caressed his damp cheek and their lips met in a beautiful kiss.
Minutes later, carrying each other’s luggage, they hesitantly walked to the door. After opening it, Will dropped the bags, lifted her hand to the brass numbers, and traced them in affirmation. Then, following another sweet kiss, they headed for the elevator hand in hand.
Usually she would call when he drove to Pittsburgh, but instead he described the still dark route. Stopping for gas, she bought their coffee—silencing any potential protest with a preemptive kiss. They were soon on the interstate, and Will tipped his head toward landmarks she recognized while giving her hand a gentle squeeze. Their actions, again, speaking volumes.
Eventually, they arrived with a sigh. “Stay there, Baby,” his drawling voice breaking with emotion, and she nodded as he squeezed her hand and climbed out. Opening her door, he reached in, and she climbed out into his embrace. Retrieving her bags, he grabbed the hat she borrowed for their mountainside date and slowly lifted it. Realizing what he meant, Lou tipped her head and he placed it on as she clutched his waist.
“You sure, Baby?” she sobbed.
“Yep!” he sniffed. Wiping her tears, he continued, “I know how much you love it… and how much better it looks on you!”
Mirroring him, she dried his cheek. “Not so sure about that… but you’re right, as always. I love it. Thank you.”
“No need to thank me,” he teased and they giggled lightly.
“Yes, there is… thank you for making so many of my dreams come true.”
“We have… so thank you!” He pulled her close and their lips met in a tongue twirling kiss.
Reluctantly pausing before reaching the point of no return, the best friends who had become lovers strolled hand in hand to the terminal. And embracing amid the early morning crowd, he sighed. “I know we’ve never felt alone… and with you having my hat, we never will be.”
Her lip quivered. “But I’ve not given you anything.”
“Baby, you’ve given me so much more than I ever dreamed possible…” Resting his hand over her heart, they gazed down as she mirrored him. With both beating rapidly, they gazed into each other’s brimming eyes, and finding his voice, he whispered, “This isn’t goodbye… never will be… we’ve been together for years…”
“And we will be…” she blinked, and they finished the sentence together, “Forever.” Held safe and secure in each other’s arms, their lips met to seal the precious vow.
Keeping her eyes closed, but in her mind gazing into Will’s, Lou lifted her hand to her damp cheek and imagined it to be him wiping her tears. Cupping the crown of the gifted hat as it rested on her lap, caressing the strong yet soft material, she thought how alike him it was. She had instantly considered him strong, while his beaming grin belied softness—assertions which were confirmed as they got to know each other. Lifting the gift, she kissed the brim and echoed, “Together forever.”
Further information about Together Forever, including the blurb and release date, can be found on the dedicated here. Alternately, click the button below to be taken to the Amazon marketplace for your location.
In last week’s post I described the first part of my writing process, from conception of a story idea through to the second edit. This week, I describe the next steps in the process…
When the second edit is complete, I let others read the story for the first time, either with or without the cover art, which I’ll say more about in a moment. My nerves always kick up at this point. I’ve put so much time and effort into the story that letting anyone see it is terrifying.
My husband is always the first to read anything I write, and I’ll implement any changes he suggests. I then send it to my network of beta readers and friends who are happy to take a look.
If their response is positive, I schedule a publication date. If, however, they inform of any errors, or have any suggestions, I take those on board and action them where necessary.
Although I’m an artist myself, I outsourced cover design for Serendipity, my first published work so I could focus on writing and promotion. I wanted to keep costs down, so I decided to go with a pre-designed cover.
There are many great designers out there and I used this list as a starting point, having been directed to it by a friend. I looked through a number of them, before returning to the first I’d seen, Melissa Alvarez’s BookCovers.us. The moment I saw the image, I loved it and felt connected to it. That said, I needed to make sure it was the one, so looked at other images on that site and elsewhere. I liked some others, so showed my husband three designs and asked him which he liked, without saying which I was drawn to. He chose the same one and within minutes I’d completed the purchase.
The Story Becomes A Book
Once the story is complete, the penultimate step for me is writing the various elements needed to take a story and turn it into a book. The front and back matter, including the blurb.
The last step, is perhaps the most important for anyone who independently publishes; formatting everything for publication. I begin by “nuking” my completed manuscript to remove any hidden formatting; by pasting it into Notepad and then into a new Microsoft Word document. Creating each version from this new Master doesn’t take long at all, around a couple hours. Each version is then read again to check for any errors.
The submission process for both distributors is easy, and neither take long to publish. For more control over the publication date, I always allow pre-order period, prior to the official launch date. Serendipity was available for two weeks ahead of the launch on February 1st.
Seeing the book on a retailer website is a special moment and something that should be celebrated. It’s another nerve wracking but exciting time in the life of the story as you await the next step. For me it’s akin to the final weeks of pregnancy, regardless of whether, in reality, you’re physically capable of birth. You’ve nurtured and developed the story for so long and the wait for it’s birth, or launch, is full of emotion.
Part of the fun for me is thanks to Amazon’s thirteen global market websites. Seeing the book page on each site in the various languages and the seemingly vast differences in price, thanks to the different currency conversions is entertaining for me.
While it might seem as if the writing process is complete. For me there’s still more to it. In next week’s blog post, I’ll describe the next steps.
Are You An Expectant Parent?
Either in reality or as a writer? Do you get nervous when anyone else reads your story? Please leave a comment so we can share our experiences of the always emotional time.
It’s literally taken years to get to this point and the release of Serendipity is just a week away! Wow! But you don’t have to wait a week, you can pre-order Serendipity now from all good ebook retailers.
I’ll give you the links shortly, but before I do, I’d like to take this opportunity to say…
Thank you, my ever loving husband and family for your unending love and support, without which Serendipity wouldn’t have come into being. I love each of you more than you’ll ever know and words are not enough to express my thanks and gratitude.
I would also like to thank the wonderful Melissa Alvarez of BookCovers.us for her work on the cover design and excellent customer service. You can be sure that I’ll work with you on future projects! Thank you!
I also have to thank my beta readers, without whom Serendipity could have been a hot mess. Much like myself at various times during the writing process!
What They Are Saying…
After reading Serendipity, this is what one of the beta readers had to say about it…
“I loved that the character Kate was as sexually empowered as Sam and broke away from the typical storyline of man seduces woman. It’s a great love story with some hot scenes! So good that the sex was consensual too.Overall, an easy-to-read fast-paced spicy novel.”
If that review has whetted your appetite, you can read Chapter One in last week’s blog post here.