Hi everyone! Charley Descoteaux back for my monthly chat at Authors Speak!
September is one of my favorite months of the year. The weather has cooled a few degrees and we’ve had some rain in the Pacific Northwest. The kids are back in school, and we have Bi Visibility Day coming up. As always, it’s on the 23rd and this year that’s also the first day of programming for the Gay Romance Northwest Meet-up! If you’ll be in the Seattle area plan to join us—admission is free and we have a lot of fun and informative activities planned.
I thought about writing this column about organization or maybe time management but I’m writing this on the evening of Sept. 7th so honestly, that kind of insight is a bit beyond me. I’m more the kind of person who reads those articles, not one who writes them. 🙂
Things are piling up on my author plate but that’s okay—a little chaos isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The trick (for me, at least) is to tackle it all a small piece at a time. Last night I worked on promo for my upcoming release, Safe House, the night before I started an editing pass on my Christmas story (also in the Buchanan House series, Holiday Weekend). At the moment, I’m trying to figure out how to write about bisexuality without going on for twenty-thousand words.
But why struggle with my own words when someone else has already phrased my thoughts perfectly? You’ve probably heard this before because it’s super quotable, but it bears repeating. (For more from Robyn Ochs, click here.)
“I call myself bisexual because I acknowledge that I have in myself the potential to be attracted – romantically and/or sexually – to people of more than one sex and/or gender, not necessarily at the same time, not necessarily in the same way, and not necessarily to the same degree.” ~Robyn Ochs
That’s why I call myself bisexual too.
As a flag-waving bisexual, I write a lot of bi characters. Since I’ll be on a panel at GRNW (Erased No More: Bisexual Characters in LGBTQ Romance!) I’ve been thinking a lot about what makes a good bisexual character and how to talk about it without going on for twenty minutes. So far, my answer is this: the character identifies as bi.
Sure, it’s not quite that simple in practice but basically that’s the answer. A bi character doesn’t have to lust after everyone they see—doesn’t have to lust after anyone at all if they’re also asexual. The possibilities are literally endless.
But that’s not an example, so I’m going to share an excerpt from my first published story with a bisexual main character. Not the Doctor was in the Dreamspinner Daily Dose “Mended” anthology in June of 2014. It’s short, so I’m posting two–the second one, Kai’s, isn’t directly after the first but it’s getting late and I was too busy writing the sixth book in my Buchanan House series during my commute instead of writing something for this space. <3
ON OUR two-week anniversary, I saw young Doc Austin again. He said everything was fine, gave me a prescription for physical therapy which would start in two weeks, and told me not to lift anything over one pound until further notice. My mind stuttered when he said get it moving. The words just didn’t make sense. My arm was broken. I’d just had surgery. And he wanted me to move it?
George dropped me off outside my building and headed back to his office. In my kitchen I found a little round postal scale with a note taped to it. Everything weighs more than a pound. His text came through a few seconds later. Don’t push it J.
I was just high enough to be freaked out and retreated to my recliner with the necessary supplies. Plus an extra blanket to hide under, even though it was a beautiful seventy-five degrees outside. The next time I woke up, I remembered he’d talked with the doctor and nurses after my surgery, when I was too woozy to stay awake and eat saltines. It was much easier to breathe knowing my brother wasn’t psychic. The things he could pick up from my thoughts alone! It didn’t pay to try and figure out when he left the scale, though. Pain meds and chronology don’t make easy bedfellows.
IF I were the praying kind, I would’ve spent the morning doing just that. Joey looked terrified as he walked down the hall—all by his lonesome. It defeats the purpose to say good luck out loud, but I almost did it anyway. He looked like he could use the boost, and his brother wasn’t exactly the nurturing type. Would it have killed George to come up and help with the bag?
Would I be judging him so harshly if I’d been up to walking Joey down myself?
Over the past few months, since he’d been doing more telecommuting, it grew more and more difficult to ignore the silver fox next door. His chestnut hair had barely started to frost at the temples, but silver fox just sounded sexy. And Joe Prescott was nothing if not sexy. He even had gorgeous feet—which I probably wouldn’t have noticed if not for my own problems down there, but that would’ve been my loss. It’s uplifting to look at something—someone—beautiful. Even a straight someone.
Those two, the Prescotts, they’re about as straight as they come. George wore a sport jacket to take Joe to the hospital. Even he wouldn’t have gone home during the procedure to change. Probably kept his head bowed over an iSomething the whole time. But he noticed me. He always notices me, and not in the same way Joe does. No, George had me pegged from the gate. If I didn’t have thirty years of experience saying I knew better, the zealous way he stepped between us would’ve made me wonder.
But if I’m interested in Joey he has to be straight because that’s my m.o. Show me a hot straight guy—bonus points for each prejudice and phobia he brings to the table—and before you can say Judy Garland, I’ve fallen for him.
Enough talking to myself in an empty apartment, time to cook something.
When Auntie gets back, maybe I’ll have gained a pound or two. Not likely, but it would make her happy.
A moment of distraction on a lonely highway leaves middle-aged widower Joe Prescott with a broken arm and in need of surgery. He’s no stranger to long hours spent alone in his apartment, but until his arm heals, independence will be a luxury. Joe is used to helping others and doesn’t realize the strength it takes to accept a helping hand, especially from the neighbor he’s had a crush on since he moved in.
Kai Hosino, “retired” chef, lives with his elderly Aunt Tilly so they can help each other navigate life with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Kai is drawn to the silver fox next door, but his painful history of falling for straight men makes him hesitant to take a chance.
Thanks for reading!
I’ll see you next month–hopefully with a more organized post! 😉
Pictures courtesy of the lovely folks at pixabay.com.