Today I have the pleasure of welcoming a dear friend of mine, Caraway Carter. I met him the first time in a mm sprint group on Facebook. I knew him before he was published, and after reading and betaing some of his work, I am happy to say he's now a published author I enjoy reading. So give a warm welcome to Caraway Carter as he takes over A Little Bit of Naughty to talk about his writing process.
My newest release is Book #4 in the Storming Love series from MLR Books. Earthquake: Anders & Ujaruk.
Part of the reason I wrote to this prompt, was because I live in California and I’ve had my share of earthquakes. The fact that we based the stories in Alaska made it more exciting.
I didn’t set out to write a multicultural romance immediately, but it just fell into place. As I started researching Alaska, I noticed a large amount of natives tended toward the caucasian, most settlers were from Russia and the America’s. Ujaruk popped into my head and told me he wanted to find a love that made him feel amazing. So, I began researching the Aleut, and slowly found my guy.
Anders Thorpe, the other main character has moved to Alaska to get a new start, after his last failed relationship, he decides its best to not have one, especially not a relationship with a co-worker.
The character of Anders’ ex-boyfriend was based on an actual professor of a very close friend. Not the relationship they had, but the torture the professor put my friend through. This professor made them take longer to get their Master’s than it should have taken.
My friend approved and loved this little added detail to the story, at first I had included the professors real full name, but we both felt it best to just keep it simple.
Here’s a snippet for you.
PrologueWhen Anders got out of bed, Bill's eyes still had that groggy, late-night sex look. He tried to pull Anders back into bed, but Anders resisted. Bill's arms weren't the rest of his life; the luggage in the hallway was-the suitcase, the messenger bag, and the battered leather zipper case with his notes and dissertation. It had been his grandfather's, and one of the few things he'd managed to rescue from the wreck of his mother's apartment back in 1989. He stored everything that meant something to him within its brown leather form.
"Babe, it's still three hours," Bill whispered. "Just come have breakfast with me, and then we'll kiss each other good-bye for now. You'll be back in six months-it's not a going-away party."
Anders smiled, nodded his head, walked to the bathroom, and turned on the shower to let it warm up. While it did, he stood in the doorway and smiled as Bill lay there drowsing, so that if he woke up he'd still see Anders standing there smiling. If he saw Anders looking anything but happy, Bill would think something was up. And something was.
Two minutes later Anders was washing the tension away, hair plastered to his head, the anxious sweat of the morning sluicing off him and down the drain. But then the shower door slid open, and Anders felt Bill behind him, pressing his body against the shower wall until Anders' lips rested at that familiar spot against the tile.
As usual, Bill's legs spread Anders' legs apart, thumb pressing inward and slicked with shower water. Anders fought not to clench or push back as Bill slid himself in-without asking, of course; he would never think to ask-and bit his lip to keep his mind from falling back into the same morning routine. Sure, he still had to act it out for Bill, but his heart wasn't in it anymore.
He endured it by reminding himself that he would not be back in six months. Bill didn't know that, and Bill didn't need to. While Anders concentrated on this being the last time, Bill pumped into him a few times, panting.
Staying with the routine, Anders turned around and scrubbed Bill down first, then switched to himself. Bill didn't wait-but then, he never did. Alone in the shower at last, Anders scrubbed down and rinsed off, and shut off the rapidly cooling shower before toweling himself down.
"Breakfast, then?" Anders asked as he came out of the bathroom and began getting dressed. Bill was still sitting on the end of the bed with his towel wrapped around his hips, but he looked over and nodded, standing and dropping the towel.
"We can go to Mollie's," Bill suggested. Anders nodded, picking up his stuff from the floor and heading out the door as Bill began to pull on clothing he'd worn the day before.
The luggage went on the backseat of Bill's Mercedes, but Anders kept the zipper case in his lap as Bill drove them to the coffee shop just outside the Phoenix airport.
Breakfast was a quiet affair. Anders ate without tasting much of the food. I want to tell you the truth, but you don't deserve it. You've lied to me so often that it doesn't seem worth the five minutes it would take.
Even so, he finally got up the nerve as the last cup of coffee was served.
"You know, Bill, I always expected to find you in bed with another promising student, but instead I found you in bed with my work."
Bill Hozen was nothing if not an absentminded professor. He either hadn't heard, or he was ignoring Anders-as usual.
"Bill," he said, pitching his voice to reach him over the coffee shop noises.
Bill looked up over his paper with a frown. "What did you say?"
"It's funny, you know. I did see you in bed with Nicholas last week, but that's not what upset me. What upset me that afternoon was finding my dissertation rewritten on your desk." Anders drank the coffee silently.
"I can explain. Nicholas hit on me. He wanted to see the bedroom view you always talked about."
"Mm-hmm. I don't care about Nicholas. Bang him for the next four years. Marry him for all I care. I'm talking about the paper you had me work on for the past six years. The one you made me recreate all the tables for and redo the statistical evidence for, with three different methods. And even after I passed-you know, the committee that included you, that passed me? Remember that? I find my revisions on your desk, rewritten in your words."
It was as though Bill wasn't listening to anything that came out of Anders' mouth. As if that's anything new? Instead, he was still stumbling over lies about Nicholas. "It wasn't in our bed. It happened in the shower, and on the balcony."
"I told you, my work is all that matters. I'm leaving for good. Take Nicholas as your new protege. He's not smart enough to realize you're ripping him off as he's sucking you off." Anders clutched his case closer to his body. "Let me take my dissertation and create my life from it. I won't write about you. You don't write what I wrote."
He rose from the table, drained the last of the coffee, took his case with him, and walked outside the restaurant to the Mercedes. Tears stinging his eyes, he retrieved his luggage and messenger bag. Then, as an afterthought, he went back into the coffee shop and tossed the keys on the table: house, car, and office.
"I don't need anything more from you, Bill. It was six years of my life, and what do I have to show for it? Life with a professor whose ethics mean nothing to him. And, yes, I'm just as bad. That's another reason I'm leaving. I'm starting over."
Bill sat behind his newspaper, his reddened forehead the only thing that betrayed his embarrassment. The other diners found interesting things to look at out the windows and on their plates, anywhere but at the two men obviously having a lovers' breakup in the middle of Mollie's Coffee Shop.
The waitress appeared with the coffee pot in hand. "Do you need anything else, gentlemen? Another cup of coffee?"
"No, thanks," Anders said. "Here's my half of the check. I'm sure he wouldn't want me to be beholden to him." He put a twenty on the table and strode out the door, the case under his arm, the bag over his shoulder, wheeling his suitcase behind him.
When he walked into the airport six minutes later, he was two hours early for his flight. He got to his gate, his case never leaving his side. There were tears in his eyes, but they were strong, life-changing tears.
Sitting in that airport, Anders vowed never to fall for a colleague again.
Geologist Anders Thorpe has sworn off relationships with colleagues, after his last one ended in a dirty little game of sabotage. Six months later and he's preparing to camp and investigate a gold mine that might still be active. He's joined by Ujaruk an archaeologist who fights an inner battle with the fact that he's a native Aleut, and wondering if he'll ever find the perfect man.
Will Anders break his vow? Will Ujaruk find the right guy? Will they survive whatever is thrown their way?
Caraway Carter has worn numerous hats. He's been a furniture salesman, a dresser, a costumer, an actor/waiter, a rabble rouser, a poet and most recently a writer. He married his husband on Halloween and they are the loving parents of two rambunctious cats. He loves words and stringing them together, he loves sex and sexy men, he loves seeing how far his muse will take him and he's looking forward to entertaining you.
Caraway’s Blog: http://www.carawaycarter.com/blog/
Caraway’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CarawayCarter
Caraway’s Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/carawaycarter/
Caraway’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/CarawayCarter