Today we have an interview! Rafe Jadison has allowed me to ask him a few questions about him and his holiday story, Little Tree, so lets jump right in. Welcome Rafe!
Do you believe in the concept of a muse? What’s yours like?
It’s funny you should ask that, because I don’t know that I actually believe in a muse, but I often jokingly write about one on my oh so neglected blog. I think there are many people and things that can inspire us to write. The muse I write about in my blog is slightly sarcastic, and well, let’s just say she’s a lot. In real life, the people who often inspire me to write are slightly more heroic. There are times in my life where I see someone in a precarious situation and wonder what that person must be going through. I think the more bothered I am by it, the more likely I am to write about it. I want to give them a happy ending. I want to work out their problems. I want to tell their story. Usually these are people who I really don’t know at all, and often people I haven’t even spoken to, just someone who caught my attention. For all I know my ideas about these people are completely wrong, but filling in the blanks can be like sudoku for writers.
Do you read your reviews?
So, I carefully read my reviews. I remember reading one when I first started publishing, and it really hurt my feelings. I was grateful that the same book later received some good reviews. I also felt better when I saw that some of my favorite authors, people who I think are talented and gifted people, had some bad reviews. I try to remember that every book is really not for every person. I try to remember that I am writing for the people who do appreciate my work, and one good review can quickly make up for a bad one in my opinion. I also know that I have to prepare to read them. I have to remind myself that they could be bad, and then I read them.
Can you share with us something about the book that’s not in the blurb?
Okay, Little Tree is a very personal story to me. I am not the main character, although we have many things in common, and his love interest is not anyone that I’m seeing, but he does resemble someone I used to love. Little Tree for me was an exploration of what would happen if the one who got away came back. The house, well, that it is very similar to one of the houses that I grew up in, and it’s also in Florida.
What is your work schedule like? When do you fit your writing in?
My day job is hectic. I frequently commit to things that I probably shouldn’t, but I think that my work is important, and so I do it. With that being said, my writing schedule comes in the evenings. Instead of watching TV after dinner, I write. It’s what I do on the weekend, other than clean and try to get some outdoor exercise. I find that to maintain a writing schedule you may often need to give things up. Once I acknowledged that, it was easier for me to make time to write.
What’s your pet peeve?
I am a stickler about manners. I don’t mean that I police people about which fork they use, or freak out if people don’t send greeting cards. I am referring to just generally treating people with respect. I think how we talk to others says a great deal about who we are. I appreciate people who even when going through hard times or having a bad day/year/life still manage to be polite to others. Kindness goes much further with me than strength or intelligence. I know we all have days, and there are times we need to complain to our BFFs, but I have little patience general nastiness toward others.
Thank you for stopping by Rafe! And here is a little about Rafe’s holiday story, Little Tree.
A few days before Christmas, David Weathers finds himself hopping a plane to his childhood home in Florida and doesn’t know why. His parents are gone, he has no siblings, yet something draws him on.
David can almost feel the magic in the air, but then he discovers Jared Acosta, the man who broke his heart twenty years earlier, has moved three doors away. Reluctantly David accepts Jared’s invitation to dinner, only to find that twenty years may not be enough for some wounds to heal.
Soon David seeks advice from his mother’s best friend Marisol, a vibrant, wise woman who believes in second chances. Can she convince David to take a chance on the man who is working so hard to be near him now? Will he be able to forgive a past that left both him and Jared unlucky in love?
“I came to take you home. I came to tell you that it would be okay now, that we could be together, and that nothing was going to get in our way.”
“So why didn’t you?”
“That whole walk, and it had to have been at least a half-hour, there was barely a time when you quit smiling,” Jared said.
“I was still hurting. You saw that on my face.”
“Yeah, and I knew that I had been the one who had made you feel that way.”
“But you could have been the one who stopped me from feeling that way,” David said.
“Or, I could have just hurt you over and over again. When I saw you with this other guy, and I saw the way he made you laugh, it made me a little happy for you,” Jared said.
“That was George. He was just a friend. He was British and had a really wicked sense of humor. He knew what I was going through. His girlfriend broke up with him when he took the job in Korea. He was the person they hired to take the position you didn’t fill. He was my roommate, but that was it.”
“It didn’t matter,” Jared said. “I saw that you still had the potential to laugh, to go on, to find happiness with some other guy, and that made me feel great. When I saw the two of you with those kids, I started to think about all the possibilities that you could have in your life.”
“Not many gay couples had kids back then,” David said. “Same-sex marriage was far from a reality in most places.”
“But we dreamed of kids,” Jared protested. “We dreamed of them. Lots of gay people dreamed of that possibility. I know you did. I saw the way you interacted with them, not just that day, but any time you were around them. I had seen it a million times. I knew that you’d make an excellent father. Some gay couples found a way to be parents even then.”
“Well, I never did,” David said. “I didn’t want to do it alone, and I never met anyone that I felt was ready for that kind of commitment, or that I was ready to make that kind of commitment to.”
“I ran off that day. I got the hell out of Pusan before I could change my mind. I wanted you to have everything.”
“Well, I didn’t get it,” David replied. “I didn’t find true love, and I didn’t have kids. I didn’t do a lot of things, Jared, and I’m not sure exactly what you want me to do with this information.”
“I just wanted you to know.”
“Know what? That it’s not your fault?” David asked. “That you tried? Or that you didn’t because you didn’t want to hurt me again? Well, I don’t know, Jared. Maybe some of my life’s screw-ups are your fault. Or maybe they’re mine because I trusted you, or I didn’t trust someone else, or I worked too much, or maybe this is just where we end up at the end of the day, and maybe that’s okay. Maybe all of these things matter, and maybe none of them do. I don’t fucking know all the maybes, Jared.”
They sat silent for a moment, staring at each other, Jared in the driver’s seat, David the passenger. Finally, the silence broke.
“I still love you,” Jared said. “I still love you, and there’s no maybe about that.”
David sighed, and then climbed out of the car. With the door still open, he stuck his head back in the passenger side of the car.
“I just really don’t know what you want me to do with this information. You moved three houses away from my parents’ house. My house. Whatever it is. You went to Pusan to come get me. But you didn’t. Then you got married. You tell me you still love me. Now. When I’m forty. What the fuck do you want me to do, Jared? What do you want me to say?”
“Whatever it is that you’re feeling,” Jared said. “That’s all I want to hear. Just tell me the truth.”
“I don’t even know what that is,” David said, standing up straight and slamming the passenger seat door.
He walked up to the house, an agitated gait defining his mood. When he reached the front door, he turned around and looked back. Jared was staring at him from the car. David shrugged his shoulders, shook his head, and mouthed, “I don’t know.”
About Rafe Jadison
Rafe Jadison enjoys writing about many different types of people and situations, ultimately believing that we are all pretty much the same. He is author of Seduced by Shark Shifters, Seduced by Shark Shifters II: Logan’s Tail, Seduced by Shark Shifters III: Tom’s Turn, Seduced by Shark Shifters IV: Mark’s Midlife, Reap This, Blake Blacks Out, Little Tree, Snowed In: Dane and Heath, Peter Passenger and the Mothman, and The Divorceary. He has lived in a variety of places, many of them by the water. You can find out more about Rafe at rafejadison.com.
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