Flash Fiction Monday – Red

April 10.jpg

Kendra walked slowly along the driveway. Gravel dug into the bottoms of her feet, painting the rock with red with every step she took. The sounds of taunts still rang in her ears.

“Freak.”

“Dyke.”

“Psycho!”

“Killer!”

She’d heard them all before. Had been hearing the first three most of her life, although they’d gotten progressively nastier in the past six months. And it hurt worse when she’d tried so hard to be normal tonight. She’d dressed up in a pretty teal dress and let her mom take photos. She’d gone to prom with Kevin—her neighbor and best friend—and tried to pretend she was just like all the rest of the kids. But it had turned ugly fast. She’d gotten separated from Kevin at some point and now here she was, with bare, bloody feet, heading toward the last place she’d seen Dana alive.

The old Thompson house had been abandoned for years. She and Dana were the only ones who ever went there. They liked to poke around the gently decaying property and lay under the big old oak tree and kiss.

Kendra let out a sigh of relief as she reached the porch. The bare, rotting boards felt good on her feet after the sharp rocks. There was still caution tape on the doors and broken windows were boarded up. But Kendra knew the trick to getting through the back-entrance off the kitchen.

The floor in the dining room was mostly gone now, just a gaping hole where the scarred wooden boards had given way.  Kendra still didn’t know how it had happened. Or what had even happened. One minute she and Dana were exploring, joking about the fact that Dana was probably going to get tetanus from the cut on her hand, and then the floor was gone.

And so was Dana.

Kendra hadn’t been able to explain it to the police. Or the shrinks they’d sent her to. But they’d finally released her. There was no evidence that Kendra had done anything to her girlfriend.  Just rumor and suspicion. She hadn’t told them about the rest. The things no one would ever believe.

Kendra took a seat on the edge of the gaping hole. “Why didn’t you take me?” she whispered, voicing aloud the question that had been nagging at her ever since. “Why Dana? Why not me?”

She closed her eyes against the hot sting of tears. Cool, musty air wafted up from the basement. Her feet throbbed and she wondered if the faint drip, drip, drip came from a leaking pipe or the bloody soles.

A blast of warm, fresh air washed over her and, in the distance, Kendra could hear Dana’s laughter.


Sorry I haven’t been writing and posting flash fics much. I’ve been doing a ton of other writing though and I was glad to be able to join in this week!

Please visit the flash fic group on Facebook and check out the links to the other authors’ flash fics for this week!

I look forward to seeing you next Monday!

Payhip and 25% off Brigham Vaughn Titles

In the wake of AllRomance’s closing, I did some searching for additional sites to sell on. I’d heard about Payhip but hadn’t taken the time to explore it. After setting it up in January and giving it a test run for about a month, I have to say I’m quite pleased with it!

As an author, it’s simple to set up an account and sell my books. As a reader, it’s easy to purchase books. That alone would be a huge draw, but there are a couple of other features I really like.

  • Unlike most sites, Payhip only takes 5% per transaction. Plus there are no setup fees, monthly fees, or hosting fees. I get to keep 95% of the profits (compared to Amazon’s 70%)
  • I get paid immediately (instead of monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly like AllRomance did!) This means even if the company closes, I won’t risk losing royalties!
  • Accepts PayPal and credit cards
  • Offers ALL file formats (mobi, ePub, and PDF) and helps protect from piracy.
  • Gives me the opportunity to set my own prices AND offer coupon codes!

So far the only downside I can see is that it only offers digital content so I can’t sell my paperbacks. Honestly, that’s a totally worthwhile tradeoff for what I get instead. So please, stop by and check it out! (Click on the Payhip button below to go straight to my page there)

payhip-button

And if you want to get 25% off on ALL my titles, go to my Payhip page, click on the book you’re interested in, click a “Tweet or Like for Discount” button, and a dialog box will pop up with a pre-filled with a message and link. Once you tweet or like, you get a discount you can use immediately!

The best part is there are no restrictions on how many times you can get a discount!

Authors and readers, I’d love to hear back about what you think of Payhip so please, comment below with your feedback.

Happy Reading!

Flash Fiction Monday – No Rest for a Cowboy

16711869_634512573402500_5877414812185196095_n.jpg

No Rest for a Cowboy

Danny’s breath steamed in the icy January air as he hefted another bale of hay and tossed it carefully over the edge of the hay loft. Panting, he stopped for a minute. His back ached from the strain and his cold, cramped fingers were sore from the twine digging in.

 Thunder rumbled through the air and Danny froze. Thunder? In January? That seemed unlikely, but if it wasn’t thunder, it was probably  …fuuuuuck

He ran to the window and saw over almost two dozen horses streaming out of the paddock and into the un-fenced portion of the ranch. He nearly shit himself. All that work. All that money. Wild horses attempting to return to the wild.

He thundered down the rickety steps and tore through the barn door, hollering for Abraham to come help. Danny was sure that their plan to buy mustangs to train for barrel racing and pleasure riding was about to go up in a cloud of dust. They’d spent every last penny to buy the ranch and the horses. If they lost the mustangs they were fucked.

Abraham caught up to him and grabbed his arm. “Hey, calm down, Danny. You’re just spooking them more.”

Danny froze and nodded tightly. “How are we going to get them back though, Abe?”

“Let’s grab some grain and a couple of lead ropes. We’ll have to try to lure them back with it, but I have a plan.”

An hour and a half later, wrung out from fear and adrenaline, Danny collapsed against his boyfriend’s chest. “I can’t believe that worked.”

“I told you.”

Danny gripped his boyfriend’s face and brought their foreheads together. Relief made him weak-kneed. “We could have lost all of the mustangs. But we didn’t.” Danny drew back to look Abraham in the eye. “Thank you. Without your cool head  …”

Abraham smiled and kissed him. “Now we know not to leave the gate unlatched.”

Danny groaned. “That was all me.”

“Hey, we’re a team, right?” A nose nudged Danny’s arm and he glanced over to see Lady, the chestnut mare who had established herself as leader of the herd.

Danny let go of Abe to rub behind her ears. “And it’s a good thing you’re in charge of these yahoos.” He gestured toward the rest of the horses who were crowding closer, searching for more grain. For a while, it had looked like utter chaos as the horses galloped, tails and manes streaming in the wind. They were gorgeous, no question about it, but terrifying as well and Danny had felt like he couldn’t breathe as he prayed none of the horses or him and Abe would be injured.

Abe’s plan to round them up had involved bribing Lady with grain to get close enough to throw a lead rope around her neck and walk her back into the paddock. The rest of the herd had reluctantly followed, the few stragglers coaxed in with a little grain.

They spent a little while checking the horses over, making sure none of them had injured their hooves or legs, but everyone appeared sound. Abe gave Marigold a pat on the rump. “Back to work, I guess.”

Danny groaned. “I just want to go take a long hot soak in the tub.”

“You have to finish getting some hay down and I have to check the fences.” Abe grinned and draped an arm over his shoulders. “No rest for a cowboy, I’m afraid.


Sorry I’ve been so intermittent about writing and posting flash fics. I was glad to be able to join in this week!

Please visit the flash fic group on Facebook and check out the links to the other authors’ flash fics for this week!

I look forward to seeing you next Monday!

Three Shots is Live

“Three Shots”, my steamy new MMF erotic romance, is live everywhere!

Facebook Cover 2.jpg

Reeve Jenkins is an amateur musician playing in a dive bar. Grant McGuire is a man drowning his sorrows in beer after a painful breakup. When Reeve charms a reluctant Grant into coming home with him, they begin a three-year friendship with some very nice benefits.

 But when the two gorgeous men walk into Hawk Point Tavern—the bar Rachael Bradford owns—one evening and greet each other with a kiss, it sets off a chain of events that leads to a steamy night and maybe something more for the trio.

Buy Links:


Amazon US
Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

Barnes & Noble

iTunes

Kobo

Payhip

Smashwords

Goodreads Link

Three Shots – Pre Order

I am delighted to tell you that my latest novella is now available for pre-order!  MMF erotic romance is a bit of a departure from my usual MM romance, but it was a fun story to work on. A good chunk of it was written years ago, but I dusted it off, switched it from 1st person PoV to 3rd, and expanded it. It’s now novella length and I am very pleased with the way it turned out. It will be released on January 31, 2017.

Three Shots - Brigham Vaughn.jpg

 

Blurb:

Reeve Jenkins is an amateur musician playing in a dive bar. Grant McGuire is a man drowning his sorrows in beer after a painful breakup. When Reeve charms a reluctant Grant into coming home with him, they begin a three-year friendship with some very nice benefits.

But when the two gorgeous men walk into Hawk Point Tavern—the bar Rachael Bradford owns—one evening and greet each other with a kiss, it sets off a chain of events that leads to a steamy night and maybe something more for the trio.
Excerpt:

Rachael sighed and took a seat at her desk, forcing Reeve and Grant from her mind. They made for a fun fantasy, but had no place in real life. She had hours of work to do, and not enough time to get it done in. Hawk Point Tavern didn’t run itself.

She tackled the paychecks first. Her employees would want checks to cash soon, and it couldn’t wait. Thankfully, she had few employees and it didn’t take overly long to tally hours and make out the checks. She had moved on to sorting order invoices for the month when she heard a soft knock on her partially open door. Thinking it was Jenna or Tyler—the other bartender on tonight—she absent-mindedly called out, “Come in.”

“Excuse me,” a low, sexy voice replied.

Rachael’s head shot up and she was startled to see Reeve peering in the door.

“I, uh, hey. Um, hi Reeve,” She stuttered. She cleared her throat. “Come in.”

He stepped into the room and pushed the door nearly closed. “Can I talk to you for a sec?”

“Uh, sure.” She frowned, puzzled by what he wanted, but not entirely displeased to have him in her office either. She stood and walked around the desk—leaning back against it and looking up to meet his gaze. “Is there a problem with your bill? Or something else I can help you with?”

He gave her a slow, sexy smirk. “I certainly hope so.”

Rachael stared at him, waiting for him to continue, but he was silent. His gaze raked over her body and she felt heat building between her legs at the slow, frank perusal of her body. By the glittering, heated gaze of his eyes, Rachael could see that he liked what he saw. Her jeans and t-shirt were hardly high fashion, but Reeve didn’t appear to have any complaints. Besides, Rachael knew she had a tight body and the jeans showed off her ass nicely.

“What can I help you with?” she asked, her voice breathless.

“Well you see, I came here looking to have a drink with a good friend, nothing more, but I found something else I am interested in.”

‘I’m … I’m sorry?”

Reeve stepped closer until he was just a foot from her, and she felt her heart speed up in her chest.

“What’s that?” Rachael repeated when he didn’t reply immediately.

“You.” The word was simple, but it did nothing to clear up her confusion.

“But … but what about Grant?” she asked. “I mean, it looked like you two were together, and I—I don’t want to cause any problems or get in the way of anything.”

Reeve moved so he was standing in front of her, booted feet on either side of her crossed ones. He leaned in, breathing softly against her cheek and she wet her lips reflexively.

“It’s pretty simple actually,” Reeve purred in her ear. “Grant and I hook up occasionally and we are both very attracted to you.” His lips brushed the sensitive outer shell and she shivered.

Bi then. Her experiences with Tom made her a little leery of bi guys, but it’s not like she was going to get involved with them beyond a quick—or maybe not so quick—roll in the sheets, she thought. This was a one-off. It wasn’t like she was going to see them after tonight so she might as well enjoy it while she had the opportunity.

“You aren’t in a relationship with him?” she said aloud. The last thing she wanted was to get involved with another cheater. Jonah had been more than enough, thankyouverymuch.

Reeve shrugged. “We’ve been friends for a long time, but it’s nothing exclusive. We keep things fluid.”

“So how would this work?” Rachael asked, her voice going a little breathless as she imagined what could play out if she said yes. “We’d have a threesome?”

“That is entirely up to you. If you’re only attracted to one of us, the other will step aside, although we’d both be very disappointed. And I somehow don’t think that’s the case, is it?”

“No, I’m definitely attracted to you both,” Rachael admitted. Reeve wrapped an arm around her lower back and pulled her flush against his body.

“Then how we fuck—” he skimmed a hand down her back to cup the lower curve of her ass “—is up for negotiation. Whatever you’re comfortable with.”

Book Info:

Genre: M/M/F erotic romance (contemporary)

Length: Novella – 35,949 words

Release Day: January 31, 2017

 

Pre-Order Links:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

Kobo

Add on Goodreads:

Goodreads

Why I March

I haven’t come out of my writing cave a whole lot lately.

What I AM coming out for is the Women’s March this weekend. My best friend and I took a road trip to Washington D.C.. Tomorrow, on January 21, 2017, we’ll join hundreds of thousands of people there, and more across the world, to say that we don’t agree with the current direction our country is heading.

CzoYyF4WgAEmQyK.jpg

You can call it a protest against Trump if you want but it’s about a lot more than just him. It’s a message to everyone, across every political party. It’s about standing up for what I believe in. Letting my voice be heard.

This isn’t sour grapes about an election. It’s an opportunity to unequivocally say that I don’t support the leaders who are trying to dismantle the policies that protect people’s health and safety.

For women.

For LGBTQ people.

For minorities.

For the disabled.

For anyone who has been marginalized or made vulnerable.

This is for the people who can’t speak for themselves.

I have a voice and I need to use it.

So tomorrow I will march. Going forward, I will hold our legislators accountable. I will not sit idly by.

I will not be silenced.


If you want to learn more about the mission and values of the march as a whole, please click here.  https://www.womensmarch.com/mission/

If you want to join us, there are sister marches happening across the world please click here. https://www.womensmarch.com/sisters

New Release – Partners (Italian Edition)

I’ve been fairly quiet about what I’m working on lately, but I’ve had some wonderfully exciting things happening. I will update you more on what’s to come later, but one of those exciting things is the translation of “Partners” into Italian!

Last spring I worked with Francy e Alex Translation to translate the first book in the “Equals” series into Italian. The release of “Compromessi” went incredibly well and I happily agreed to translate “Partners” as well. Francesca and Alessandra have been lovely to work with and I am so pleased to announce that the second book, “Partners” is now available!

*waves to my Italian readers*

Partners (Equals - Romanzo, #2) - Brigham Vaughn.jpg

 

All Romance

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

iTunes

Kobo

Smashwords

(Note: I will update this post with the buy links for B&N and Kobo once they go live there)

Flash Fiction Monday – Temptation

54ee4f466af2277f008ebc0d6adef259.jpg

“Get down from there, Sebastian,” I begged. Fear made my throat tight and quaver-y. But he didn’t appear to hear me. He was a dark figure, silhouetted against the sky. The fading sun tinged everything with a strange, surreal glow.

Sebastian wavered, almost losing his balance for a moment before he righted himself. His arms rose higher behind him, looking almost like wings as he walked along the fallen tree, so high up off the ground. Snapped off during a heavy storm, the tree had come to rest on the branches of another tree and made a bridge.

We walked these woods every weekend. Bullied and teased at school. Ignored or picked on at home, neither of us had anywhere to go but these woods. And no one to turn to but each other.

The moment Sebastian had seen the tree-bridge, he’d darted ahead of me and scrambled up to explore. Now, my heart sat in my throat, heavy with fear. Sebastian had been so vague lately. So distant and strange. More reckless than usual.

What if he  … but no, he wouldn’t? Would he?

“Please,” I begged again.

He turned to face me and closed his eyes, looking like someone about to dive from a cliff into the ocean. Only there was no ocean below. Just cold, hard earth and too far to fall in between. I held my breath. He crept forward, his scuffed sneakers reaching the edge of the fallen tree.

I whimpered, helpless terror making my voice mute, but he must have heard me because his eyes opened. Even at that distance I could see the blankness on his face.  He shook his head and seemed to snap out of the daze he’d been in.

“Come down, Sebastian, please,” I croaked.

He gave me a vague, fleeting smile, but turned and walked slowly across the fallen tree and shimmied down the trunk to the ground. I caught him in my arms the moment his feet touched the earth.

I squeezed him hard, too hard probably, but I was so relieved to see him on safe, flat ground. “Don’t fucking do that to me again,” I pleaded. “Please, you’re all I have. Don’t scare me like that.”

He mumbled something against my shoulder. I pulled back and he looked me dazedly, like he wasn’t sure what had happened. The look in his blue eyes was still vague and distant, but he nodded at me. I gripped his hand and led him away, but he turned back and stared at the tree.

“You’re all I have,” I repeated and tugged him further from temptation.

I didn’t know if I was enough to anchor him to this earth anymore. And without Sebastian, I had nothing.


That took a more serious tone than I originally planned, but

Please visit the flash fic group on Facebook and check out the links to the other authors’ flash fics for this week!

I look forward to seeing you next Monday!

 

 

 

 

 

Photography – The Golden Hour #VantagePoint

A few weeks ago, I was approached by someone from Light.co about my photography. They’re a camera company with a new technology that sounds quite interesting, but since I don’t actually have a photography blog, I was rather surprised they’d stumbled across it.

I primarily think of myself as a writer, but photography really is my second passion. When they asked if I’d like to take part in their #VantagePoint project it was such an interesting project I said yes.

The challenge was to pick my favorite location to shoot and share my favorite photo from that location and tell a bit about why I picked that location and photo.

I debated what my favorite location was for quite a while. I have a deep love for Stratford, Ontario and have taken hundreds of photos of both the charming little town and the surrounding countryside. Nova Scotia was also a favorite place because of the incredible rocky streams and waterfalls. The Great Lakes were also a contender because being near them is truly my happy place. But in the end, I chose my parents’ property.

They own fifty acres, most of which is fields and woods. It’s a really lovely contrast to the areas near the house, which are beautifully landscaped. When they bought the property from my grandma and built the house twenty-five years ago, it was a bare field with woods ringing the outskirts. They’ve planted trees (with an emphasis on native species) and made beautiful vegetable and flower gardens. The house is tucked back on an angle and the driveway curves around to reach it. As you pull in the driveway you pass some clusters of trees. To the left and right are fields with wild grasses. Next, you see the small barn and two horses grazing in the fenced in pasture. Next is the vegetable garden. And then you see the house and garage. Although only a few decades old, the house seems much older. Flower gardens ring the house and in the height of summer, it’s absolutely stunning.

The variety of subjects I can shoot on that property is what makes it so appealing. I can shoot both the wild fields and cultivated flowers. I can find an endless array of textures and shapes to do close-up shots. The area changes drastically throughout the seasons, and there’s always something interesting to point my camera at.

It was difficult to choose my favorite photo, but the one I finally settled on is a great example of what the property looks like in late summer as the sun begins to set. Photographers refer to that time as the “golden hour” when the light is softer and warmer-toned. It gives everyone and everything a magical glow.

IMG_3055.jpg

This particular photo was taken a few years ago. Friends met me at my parents’ house and we had a bonfire. If I remember right, it was to celebrate the engagement of friends of ours. It wasn’t a planned shoot, but I happened to grab my camera and took a handful of photos of the light, the sunset, and then the bonfire.

Although the golden hour makes everything look more beautiful, it can actually be quite difficult to capture especially as it starts to wane.  The photo can be washed out or too warm in tone, with no cooler tone to balance it out. The shadows can also be tricky. When I caught a glimpse of the sun peeking through the trees and highlighting the leaves that were just beginning to turn yellow, I knew I needed to photograph it. But capturing that was difficult.

I took a handful of shots that didn’t quite manage to get the right balance. It wasn’t until I stepped further to one side and only caught the edge of the sun in the frame that I got that perfect blend of warm light and interesting shadow and texture.

I shot it using my Canon Rebel XTi, which I’ve owned for maybe 7-8 years (I had a Canon Rebel G before that when I shot with film). I used my favorite lens, a Canon EF-S 55-250mm zoom.  It’s a really versatile lens and I find I use it most when I am shooting a wide variety of subjects. In this particular case, I was zoomed all the way out to 55mm, but if I’d wanted a close up shot of the light through the leaves of the tree I could have zoomed in to get a very tight shot. I absolutely love that flexibility.

In the end, I picked the photo because it perfectly captures the mood of that evening and the feel of the property. Sometimes it takes dozens or hundreds of pictures to get that perfect shot. And when you’re racing against the setting sun to capture the light it adds an extra challenge.

But getting that perfect shot makes it totally worth it.

Note: If you’re curious to learn more about light.co’s new camera, stop by their site. It uses a really interesting new technology. One drawback of my Canon is the size and their camera does promise DSLR-technology in a much smaller package. I am definitely intrigued by the idea.


Disclaimer: I wasn’t compensated in any way for this post.  I just found the project and camera interesting and enjoyed the chance to discuss my photography.

 

 

 

 

Flash Fiction Monday – Whiskey and Need

November 14.jpg

“We shouldn’t be doing this,” Rey said, but there was no conviction to his tone, just thick need, barely suppressed.

The garish light from the neon motel sign lit the side of Barrett’s face and highlighted the rugged handsomeness. Rey’s chest felt tight as he looked at his partner, Barrett. Partner in the Springfield police department, that is. Not his lover. Or at least they hadn’t been.

But their mouths were inches apart and Barrett’s grip on his shirt was tight.

They’d been skirting this moment for weeks now. Months of getting to know the man under the stoic façade, months of noticing the width of Barrett’s shoulders, the solidity and heat of his body, and months of fighting it. Weeks of wondering what his mouth tasted like. Days of being holed up in this motel together and trying not to stare at Barrett’s chest, broad and lightly furred, damp from the shower as he walked around the room in a towel.

“You think I don’t know that?” Barrett’s voice was a low rumble and Rey felt his gut clench as he imagined that sound in his ear as Rey pinned him to the bed.

No, he knew Barrett understood the dangers as well as he did: work conflict, the danger of being found out by their colleagues, Barrett’s family.

Barrett half-rose in his seat, pulling Rey toward him.

Rey’s head swam; his brain entirely incapable of rational thought anymore. The throb in his groin and the need in his chest overwhelmed everything else.  They shouldn’t  … and yet  …

Barrett’s mouth landed on his, tasting of whiskey and need.


 

This week’s flash is short, but hopefully sweet.

Please visit the flash fic group on Facebook and check out the links to the other authors’ flash fics for this week!

I look forward to seeing you next Monday!