Yep, that’s the name of my novel. Yep. MY NOVEL.
Look at the cover!
Designed by yours truly.
And the title, Love & Other Things, is the work of my wonderful friend Krissy, because I was completely lost!
Here is the description from the Kindle page:
Third Time’s a Charm- Tara is a 30-something professional. She’s successful at nearly everything she does, except when it comes to love. When she meets Chris, right after her latest love disaster, she steps out on faith. Can she put aside her past experiences to give herself a real chance at happiness?
Where I Want to Be – Val has always been perfectly happy to bounce from guy to guy, taking what she needs and moving on. She hates the idea of love, and will do anything she can to get away from it.But is that what she really wants?
Do-Over – Kristin is happily married to the love of her life. But when unexpected events challenge everything she believed about her relationship, will she still be able to believe in love?
Love & Other things is a novel about second chances at finding love.
Not enough? Well, Love & Other Things is available for only $0.99 over on Kindle! I would truly appreciate your support, and your feedback!
I’m going to include a few excerpts below!
I smirked in quiet satisfaction as I watched Malcolm through my front window. This hadn’t been a good night for him at all.
I had first met Malcolm eight months ago. He was watching me from across the street while I sat outside my favorite little restaurant, having lunch. He had a huge black camera in his hands, pointing it at me. I had been freaked out at first, thinking he was stalking me, but then he lowered the camera and flashed me a smile. I was a sucker for a great smile.
He was handsome, in a rugged sort of way, dressed in casual button-up and un-ironed khakis. He wore his jet black hair in a fro that complimented his butterscotch skin well. His golden brown eyes danced in the sunlight as he walked over to introduce himself. He pulled up a chair beside me, barely an inch away as he held up the camera again, showing me the pictures he’d taken.
“Beautiful, right?” He asked, smiling.
“Yeah, they are. You’re very talented.”
“I wasn’t talking about the pictures…”
I blushed, turning my gaze back to my unfinished lunch. A few minutes later, I gave him my number. Three weeks after that, I gave him my body. Four months after that, he was moving into my house. He claimed that his work as a photographer was drying up, and he was losing his apartment. In a moment of generosity after a night of passionate lovemaking, I had suggested that he move in with me. I immediately regretted it, but the thought of taking back the offer almost made me break out in nervous hives. Besides, he needed somewhere to go.
Malcolm was so different from the other men I had dated. He didn’t wear fancy suits, and he didn’t even own a watch. He had never been out of the country, didn’t know what made a Napa wine different from a Sonoma, and he put a heavy “L” in salmon. He was low key, not a pretentious bone in his body. Despite all of these differences, he did have one thing in common with them.
He couldn’t keep it in his pants.
We had been together for almost eight months when some girl started calling him at all hours of the night. He tried to explain it away, but then one day she started calling me, even showed up at my office, talking about she wanted to talk to me. I wasn’t really interested in any “Barbara, this is Shirley” nonsense. She could have him. Not that I needed it, but he hadn’t shown me a dime towards a single bill since he moved in. Malcolm was fine, but he was lazy as hell. I would come home, mentally drained from a long day at work to find my sink full of dishes, and laundry room overflowing with his clothes. When he came home that night, after being God knows where, the locks had been changed, and his stuff was in a heap at the end of my driveway.
Kristin and Val, my two best friends, had insisted on being there, and I was honestly glad for the company. We watched, laughing and drinking wine, as he packed his belongings into his “other” girl’s car. It had started raining, and I hoped that the water would ruin most of his things.
“Hey, you alright?” Val placed a comforting hand on my shoulder as she spoke.
“Yeah,” I lied.
Single, yet again Tara. What are you gonna do now?
“Just a little tired. Emotionally drained.”
“Aww, boo.” Kristin said, pulling me into a hug. “You’re gonna be ok. Good riddance, right?”
“Exactly!” Val chimed in. “Forget him, he was a loser anyway. I warned you about falling in-”
“Val, shut up. She doesn’t want to hear your “I don’t believe in love” nonsense right now, ok?”
Val rolled her eyes, but remained quiet. There would have usually been an argument, but I guess she could tell Kristin was right. They stayed with me a little longer before they left, Kristin going home to her husband and daughter, and Val heading out for a date. When they were gone, I took the hottest shower I could stand, hoping to wash the events of the day out of my head. As much as I was glad to be rid of Malcolm, I couldn’t help being sad about my newly single status.
I had never been under the delusion that Malcolm was the “one”, but dang, I couldn’t seem to catch a break. I’d never had a relationship end amicably; it was always complete devastation, disaster. I saw Kristin and Ahmad together, happily married. They always seemed so in love. I wanted that, desperately, but I couldn’t seem to find a guy to treat me the way Ahmad treated her. It was like I attracted liars and lowlifes.
Maybe I should just leave dating alone.
I smiled dryly at the handsome man sitting across from me as he droned on and on about his “adventures” in corporate recruiting. I was incredibly curious about what his body looked like beneath his perfectly tailored suit, but God, he had to stop talking. I emptied the bottle of wine into my glass, knowing I would need it to make it through the rest of this boring ass date.
As I downed the last of the wine, I found myself wondering what Devon was doing. I was never bored with him, and the sex? I shuddered as the flesh memory washed over me.
“Are you OK? You cold?” My date asked, finally noticing something other than his own voice.
“No, I’m not cold. I’m fine.” I snapped with more venom than intended. “Are you ready to go?” I asked gently, correcting my attitude.
“Already? It’s still early; I thought I would get more time to get to know you…”
Ugh, and he’s a whiner?
“I’m just gonna be honest with you, Mark-“
“Oh, thanks Mike. Just to be completely transparent, I’m not really feeling it, so why don’t we just call it a night?”
I felt a little bit bad, seeing the happy expression fade from his face, but it wasn’t my fault his ass was utterly uninteresting.
“Wow. Uh, OK. Well, I guess this is goodnight then.”
I insisted on paying for my own dinner, and the wine, but he refused, and I wasn’t about to argue very long. I was ready to get home, and get out of these heels and bra.
I awoke with a gasp, flipping the covers away from my overheated body. As the cool air from the room touched my sweat-dampened skin, my heart rate slowly returned to normal. Shaking my head at myself, I climbed out of my king-sized bed and headed to the kitchen for a glass of water. When I climbed back into the bed a few minutes later, I was suddenly hyper-conscious of the way the sheets caressed the bare skin of my legs, and I found myself flashing back to dream that had woken me up.
Devon’s strong hands had touched me all over. His soft lips had been everywhere. But his handsome face, disappearing between my thighs… that’s what had woken me up.
I glanced over at the clock, noting that it was just a little after 11pm. Not too early to call Devon.
Not calling Devon had been my whole reason for going to bed early when I got home from the date.
Devon and I had known each other for nearly two years, the first of which we had been very hot and heavy. He was… God, he was everything that I wanted in a man. Well, everything that I thought I wanted. He was handsome, and smart, and incredibly good to me. I was never bored with Devon, but… He was too good, too normal, and too perfect. There was no drama with Devon, and sadly I needed drama. We had ended our relationship amicably, and I could honestly say that we were still friends. We talked, we hung out, and we really were friends. Even so, I was still drawn to him. There was a feeling of rightness and security that I couldn’t ignore.
I had just let out a heavy sigh when my phone began to chime, notifying me of a new message.
“Hey, you busy?”-Devon.
My heart rate immediately increased. I was happy to know that I was on his mind, especially since he was already on mine.
“No, what’s up?”
I quickly tapped out, not even bothering to pretend not to be thirsty for him. I was parched.
“Just got home from a blind date with the dizziest chick I’ve ever met. DYING for some adult convo.” -Devon
I grinned. So you were on a date too, huh?
“Just adult convo, or….?”
I patiently waited for his response, knowing that I wouldn’t need to elaborate on that “or”.
“On my way.”-Devon
I quickly jumped out of the bed and headed to my closet, looking for a matching bra and panty set. Devon only lived a few minutes away, and I wanted to be ready when he got there. I had already showered, but I couldn’t decide which set to wear. Fuck it. He preferred me in nothing anyway.
“Are we really not gonna talk about this?” I glanced over at Ahmad, who had just slipped into the bed beside me without a word.
“Talk about what, Kris?”
I rolled my eyes.
I hate when he does this.
“You know what I’m talking about Ahmad, don’t do that. You didn’t come home last night, or the night before that. I barely even see you anymore.”
“I was out with the players, babe.”
“Yeah, I figured that much, but that’s not an excuse for you to not come home. You’re not a single man, Ahmad.”
“But I am grown. What, you trine give me a curfew now?” he asked, sitting up in the bed.
“Nobody is talking about a curfew. I’m talking about you not coming home until four in the morning, and not even bothering to call, text, email, tweet me, something to show me that you cared enough to let me know where you were. It’s like this is becoming a pattern for you, and I don’t like it.”
“Since when do I have to check in with you?”
I took a deep breath, and bit down on my lip, willing myself not to lose my temper.
“Ahmad, how would you feel if this situation was reversed, and I didn’t come home until after sunrise?”
“You wouldn’t have your ass out all night like that.”
“So it’s fine for you, but if I did it, we would have a problem?”
“Damn right. You’re my wife, what reason would you have to be out till all hours of the morning?”
“Are you serious? You can’t be serious.” I said, feeling the anger rising up from the pit of my stomach.
“I’m dead serious, Kris.”
“No, you’re a damn fool is what you are, if you think that it’s fine for you to be out doing whatever you want, but I can’t do the same. The next time you decide you wanna not come home? Don’t. Come. Home.”
“Whatever girl, you’re not gonna do anything.” He rolled over, pulling the covers over his head.
I yanked them away from him, kicking and pulling until they were on the floor.
“Don’t you dare dismiss me Ahmad.”
“I’m not about to do this with you tonight. I’m tired, and I just don’t feel like dealing with this shit.”
“Maybe if you had come home at a married man’s time last night, you wouldn’t be tired, and there wouldn’t be anything to deal with.” I snapped, watching as he stood up from the bed to retrieve the sheets and blankets I had tossed to the ground.
“There’s always something to deal with Kristin! I’m sick of it. You wanna talk about why I didn’t come home last night, let’s talk about that.”
“So it’s my fault?”
“Hell yes it your fault. Whenever I get home, you’ve always got a list of shit for me to do, a list of things I’m not doing right, a list of reasons we can’t have sex, I’m sick of you and your damn lists.”
“What?!” Rage bubbled up in my chest as he stood there, blaming me for all of our problems. “Maybe if you actually did anything around the house, did a few things right, there wouldn’t be a list. And it’s really, really messed up for you to throw a lack of sex in my face when you know I’ve been battling this mutant-ass bacterial infection that I can’t get rid of.”
“Whatever Kris. You always have an excuse. Like I said, I’m not about to do this tonight. I’ll sleep in the guest room.”
“Why don’t you just take your ass wherever you were last night?” I asked, rolling my eyes.
“Maybe I will.” he snapped as he stormed out of the room, slamming the door behind him. Hot tears sprang to my eyes as soon as he was out of my sight. I hated arguing with him, but it really seemed like it’s all we did anymore.
And I have to take a minute to thank those of you so encouraged me not to compromise my work in the last post. I really, really appreciate it, and my work is unadulterated because of your support.
Again, thank you!