Happy Thursday my darlings!
The question I seem to get most often these days is: “Why a novella series?” My answer is: “Why not?”
I might not be a plotter, but I AM a planner. A business planner. The actual art of writing is only a part of being a writer. And, let’s face it; novellas are the new black. Readers have shown that they want the instant gratification provided by a well-written novella. In our fast-paced world, it’s what readers have time for. Plus, novellas are cheaper than full-length novels (or they SHOULD be). That’s a win!
When I began planning the Shadow Maverick Ranch series, I had two things in mind. First, I wanted the stories to be satisfying novellas – complete stories that gave the reader a quick escape. Second, and most important, I wanted these stories to be down-to-earth, real-life situations. No heavy drama, no over-the-top scenarios. Just a family of ranchers dealing with everyday life. Well … okay. Just a family of male ranchers dealing with their love lives. Oh, to hell with it. Shadow Maverick Ranch is about some hot cowboys and the women who tame their wild hearts. Period.
Will the Shadow Maverick Ranch series always be novellas? I can say the first three are definitely novellas, yes. After that … I suppose the readers will decide…
Here’s a little taste of Borrowed Cowboy – available now!
Pax made good on his promise to call.
He called every night for a week, so when her phone rang late on Friday night, Reese wasn’t surprised.
“Hi, beautiful. You home yet?”
She experienced a rush of pleasure at hearing his voice. Reese turned her key in the lock. The man had impeccable timing. “Walking in now.”
“How’d it go?”
She tossed her purse and keys on the narrow counter that served as a pass-through to her kitchen.
“Without a hitch.” She’d been planning the fundraiser for a local children’s hospital for months. “They raised a lot of money, and I found the perfect caterer for Gavin and Lauren’s wedding.”
Surprise colored his tone. “Yeah?”
“I’ve been hesitant to mention them to Lauren. They were highly recommended, but I’ve never seen them in action until tonight. The food was delicious, and perfect for what Lauren envisioned. I won’t bore you with the details. What did you do today?”
“You never bore me, darlin’. You wanna talk boring? I spent a good part of the day in the office with Gavin.”
She snickered. “In the office?” As memory served, Pax hated anything to do with paperwork. Or being cooped up inside. He preferred fresh air and wide-open spaces.
“Not my favorite thing to do, but sometimes, a necessary evil. There’s a neighboring property we’d like to buy. We had a conference call with our dad this morning. Sort of a status update, I guess you could say. Then I spent the next few hours going over land surveys and next year’s breeding schedule. Tedious stuff.”
Right. Tedious. He loved every minute of it, just as she loved her work. “Are your parents enjoying their vacation?”
Reese made her way to the bedroom. She kicked off her heels, shouldered the phone, and worked the sheer pantyhose down her legs. Wearing pantyhose on a hot Texas night should be a crime. She sat on the edge of the bed and flexed her toes, groaning as her muscles cooled and relaxed.
“They are.” Pax’s voice turned sultry smooth. “What are you doing?”
She fell back on the bed. “I’m reveling in being out of those shoes. And don’t get me started on the pantyhose.”
“If I were there, you’d be out of more than just your hose and shoes.”
Her body reacted to his threat, heat pooling between her thighs. “Promises, promises.”
Reese ran a hand over her breast. God, she missed him. Their work schedules had made getting together impossible over the last week. They had their date for Mrs. Sinclair’s seafood boil tomorrow, and it couldn’t come soon enough. Reese was counting down the hours until Pax picked her up.
The night of Patrick’s death had haunted her for so long. She felt lighter, happier than she had in years. Reese never dreamed they’d be in this place. She and Pax. Rediscovering the connection between them.
Their nightly conversations had been tame. A ritualistic check-in at the end of each day that screamed relationship. They’d begun to get to know each other again, which seemed odd considering in the two times she’d seen him, he’d made her come more times than she could count.
Leave it to them to do things backward.
Pax continued to avoid the topic of his marriage and Reese didn’t push. She’d figured out most of it on her own, anyway. Reese hadn’t been entirely forthcoming, either. She’d never been married, but she’d been asked. Recently. Pax deserved to know, but how does one go about saying Hey, this guy I refused to marry keeps calling…
Yeah, not so easy when the man she loved was looking for a reason not to trust her. Whether he realized he was doing it or not.
One day, he’d trust her to protect his heart. The last thing she wanted to do was give him a reason not to.
Reese filled her lungs, prepared to broach the subject.
He’d be cool. Pax would see the situation for what it was. Reese wasn’t interested in Todd or anything he had to offer. Pax owned her heart. Okay, so she wouldn’t share that last part. Call it a defense mechanism. Whatever. Her heart wasn’t a card she was ready to play.
“Tell me about the dress you’re wearing. I assume you’re in a dress?”
Pax’s words startled her back to the conversation. “Well … yes. For the moment I am. A cocktail dress. Simple. Nothing flashy.” She was often expected to attend the fundraisers she planned. She dressed the part, but preferred to stay on the sidelines to make sure everything went as scheduled.
“Gonna need a little more for the visual I’m trying to create here, sweetheart.”
And she’d just lost her opening to a conversation that would now have to wait. Not for long, though. Soon.
“It’s just a dress. Spaghetti straps. Modest…” She glanced at her cleavage. “…modest-ish. Black and turquoise. That’s sort of a green—”
“I know what turquoise looks like. Keep going. Is it a long dress?”
He growled. “How short?”
Reese hummed into the phone, warming to his game. “Short enough.”
“Take it off.”
Her stomach clenched at the demand. “What?”
“Take. It. Off.”
To purchase Borrowed Cowboy:
As always, thank you for reading!! Tell me readers, what do you like or dislike about novellas?
Until next time…