March Giveaway


New month! I’m doing a Book Birthday Giveaway on the first of every month this year. The giveaway is of books that have been published in March in the past years, and it’s a lumberjack kind of month LOL.
We have Once in a Forest, The Empty Egg, Once in the Underworld, and Just Words.

How does it work?

It’s quite simple, actually. I’ve set up a giveaway over at Kingsumo. You sign up (you’re not signing up to my email list by doing so, so fear not) with your email address. Then on March 8, Kingsumo will draw a random winner, and I’ll email you on the address you signed up with. Easy peasy.

The Books

All books are from the Nortown series and Once in a Forest and Once in the Underworld are standalone, but The Empty Egg and Just Words are short stories about Aiden and Tristan from Once in a Snowstorm.

Once in a Forest is about Jason and Tom. Jason is from the city and decides to visit his friend, Aiden, in Nortown despite it being in bumfuck nowhere. All is fine and well until his precious dog, Biscuit runs off. In the woods, he meets Tom.

I wrote this after having seen a reader request a ‘bottom for you’ story LOL.


Once in the ForestTom nodded, before seeking out the red-haired woman with his gaze. “Could we have a cup, love?”

She practically floated over to them, placed cups on the table, and started pouring.

Erm…could I have a macchiato, please?”

Everyone around the table, including Aiden, stilled. Jason glanced around, trying to figure out what had happened.

Sorry, we don’t have that here. Coffee—” she held up the pot “—tea, or would you prefer some juice or maybe a soft drink?” She smiled and stroked away a lock of hair that had fallen out of her ponytail.

No macchiato? “I’ll have a cup of tea, then, please.” He smiled his most charming smile and out of the corner of his eye noticed how everyone relaxed a fraction. Are they expecting me to throw a fit? I’ve got manners!

The woman scurried away, and Jason turned back to the others. “So what do we do about Biscuit? I can’t leave him out there all night.”

Tristan grumbled something, which was followed by Aiden stamping on his foot under the table.

Ouch! Why did you do that?”

Because you’ll help find the dog.”

If anyone had mentioned a dog in the first place—”

Yeah, well, I didn’t think, all right? I just assumed it would be fine.”

How can you—” Tristan started, but Tom’s deep voice stopped him mid-sentence.

Erm… Can someone fill me in?”

Tristan gave Jason a dark look before shifting his attention to Tom. “Jason here is Aiden’s friend from the city—” the word was said with such distaste Jason wanted to punch him “—who is visiting for the weekend. It’s just no one mentioned there being a dog included. They got here, and Jason simply let the little mutt out of the car. And Og being Og…”

Oh…” Tom sipped at his coffee, acting as if all was well with the world.

Oh? My dog is gone and you say ‘oh’?” Jason’s voice rang through the run-down café, making everyone else go silent.

Tom shrugged again, and it was starting to get on Jason’s nerves. “You can’t bring a dog to another dog’s house, especially not if they’re both males. Even I know that. Cookie was intruding.”


Another shrug. Jason gritted his teeth. Tom stroked his beard, which was even longer than Tristan’s. Were they too lazy to shave, or was it the fashion around here? Jason suppressed a snort.

The Empty Egg is… eh… erm… LOL. It’s a short story about Aiden and Tristan. Aiden has been to the city to buy some chocolate and another surprise for Tristan’s Easter egg, only he gets a little nervous and accidentally eats a praline or a few.


The Empty EggAiden wiped his sweaty palms on his new jeans—they made his arse look edible, he hoped Tristan would like them—and put the plates on the table. Before folding the napkins into rabbits like he’d seen on YouTube, he fetched the egg from the coffee table—should I place it there on the table?—righted the yellow tulips in the vase…and ate another piece of Tristan’s fudge. Pecan, possibly the best so far. He went to fetch the dessert spoons, slipping another piece into his mouth when he returned. Creamy almond melted on his tongue, and he sighed. Bliss! Too bad it didn’t calm the desperate hammering of his heart. He ate another piece, groaned, and tried to ignore his guilty conscious that was telling him not to have any more of Tristan’s sweets.

Maybe I should hide the egg. He ran his fingers through his curls, making sure they weren’t too badly tangled. Reaching into the egg again, he almost snatched his hand back when the smooth fabric brushed against his hand. What would it feel like to wear them? Cool and silky, sliding against his skin. Aiden let out an unsteady breath. What if he’d got it all wrong? Heat spread over his cheeks; maybe he should forget about the egg altogether, hide it, and pretend he’d never planned to give it to Tris.

He took another piece—salted caramel. Fuck! He shouldn’t have eaten that. He’d only bought a couple of pieces, and he’d already eaten some in the car back from Whiteport. He’d gone for no other reason than to buy fudge at the chocolatier, and they were fucking expensive. He’d bought the jeans, too, as he already was in the city, but they weren’t the reason he’d gone there. Tristan was.

He checked the vegetables in the oven; there was still time, but Tristan needed to get his fine arse home soon or it would all be ruined. Aiden reached over the plates to snatch another piece of fudge, digging around but feeling only the satin and the soft elastic lace. In one erratic movement, he tipped the egg over, almost bringing down one of the wine glasses with it.

Two sorry pieces!

Once in the Underworld is about Chris and Gabe. Gabe saw something he shouldn’t and the cops decide to hide him in Nortown in wait for the trial. Gabe isn’t doing too well staying hidden in a cabin with nothing to do. Chris does his best to make things easier for Gabe, but there isn’t much to do about the situation but wait.


Once in the UnderworldHe’d been whisked away from the police station as soon as he’d told them what he’d seen and that he would be able to identify the men if he saw them again. Once he’d pointed them out in photos, a frenzy had taken over the police station. It had all happened so fast, and he hadn’t even been able to grab any of his clothes.

The wine-red slacks he’d been wearing under the lab coat and a T-shirt was all he had. The clothes Hart had given him were a size too small, but he’d squeezed himself into the too-tight sweats before going into town anyway. Sweats in town. Gabriel sighed. He would never leave his flat in sweats back home, and he didn’t expect a village like this would take too kindly to fat queers in red trousers.

He scratched his beard, hoping they wouldn’t treat him badly for looking like a vagrant, and opened the car.

The first thing he noticed as he neared the door to the café was several people inside. He glanced at his watch: twenty past eight. What the hell is everyone doing here? He hadn’t expected the café to get many customers in a day, but as he opened the door, he was greeted by no less than seven pairs of eyes.

“Erm…good morning.” He pulled self-consciously at his sweater, hoping it didn’t draw too much attention to his wobbly middle.

“Good morning.” A red-haired woman smiled at him before grabbing a coffee pot and topping off the cups of two grey-haired women sitting at the corner table with knitting needles in their hands. Both of them smiled and nodded at him. A man completely dressed in green with a full beard and dark eyes was chatting to a man with honey-coloured hair and a model’s good looks. In the farthest corner, a fine-limbed, blond man did his best to avoid Gabriel’s gaze, and by the counter, a red-haired little boy was picking at a plate of scrambled eggs.

Gabriel breathed in deep and neared the counter.

The offerings were sparse; Gabriel couldn’t see any of the pastries he’d fantasised about.

“What can I get you, love?” The red-haired woman walked past him and stepped in behind the counter.

Gabriel looked around, wondering who she was calling love, but she only kept looking at him. “Oh…erm…I’d like a caramel latte and a cinnamon roll, please.”

The green-clad man stopped talking and glared at him. Gabriel’s cheeks heated, and he started stuttering, “O-or a s-salad and a glass of water, please.” He wanted to run out of there, preferably before he was served a salad.

“Tom!” The good-looking man reached over the counter and gently pushed at the man who was still glaring at Gabriel, his tone a mix of amusement and exasperation. Gabriel wished the ground would open up before him.

Just Words is the end of Once in the Underworld but from Aiden’s perspective. Or it starts that way, most of the story is Aiden and Tristan alone in the woods, sorting a few things out.


Just WordsHe turned into the driveway, seeing several cars parked pell-mell around the small cabin. Everything spun before his eyes as he threw open the door. His feet hit the ground, but something yanked him back.


The seat belt was tangled up around his arm, pulling him back as he tried to go.


The belt finally snapped back into place, and Aiden was free to move. He stumbled towards the cabin, only half aware of the men gathering around. The rickety stairs creaked under his weight. Shoving a formal-looking man out of his way, he barged in through the open front door.

Tristan!” His voice was shrill, and it kept climbing higher and higher as his heart tried to find a way out between his ribs and into the room. Furniture was toppled over; glass lay shattered on the floor. He was too late.

The world stopped.

It was impossible to put words on the pain blossoming in his chest—a crippling yet dull ache that sucked the life out of him. His feet moved in slow motion without him telling them to. His entire surroundings turned into a black-and-white movie completely lacking life and sound.

There was nothing left—nothing left of him, nothing left of Tristan. In a heartbeat, the world became hollow. Dead. Lost. Gone.

Aiden’s entire being cramped. He feared he’d turn himself inside out right there on the floor, and yet he wasn’t there…he simply wasn’t anymore.

A chuckled echoed in his head, and his heart splintered. It was Tristan’s laugh, the soft clucking sound he made when he found something funny but didn’t laugh full out.

Then there were footsteps, and Aiden turned towards the doorway. Tristan stood there. As if nothing had happened. As if Aiden hadn’t died—as if he hadn’t died. He ran one of his massive hands over his beard and raised an eyebrow at something the official-looking man said.

“Of course. I can testify, too, if you need it.”

“Tristan.” Aiden’s strangled whisper hardly had strength to grow loud enough to be heard, but Tristan did. Those hazel eyes focused on him, then widened a bit.

“Aiden? What are you doing here? I begged you to stay safe.”

What are you doing here? Aiden stared at him in disbelief. Why wouldn’t he be here? Of course he would be here. “I came for you!”


That’s it for now. Hop on over here to enter.


Jason has one rule when it comes to holidays – work his shift and find a willing body to distract himself with. This Easter, he’s trying something new: visiting his friend, Aiden, who lives in the middle of nowhere. When Jason lays eyes on Tom, the gruff lumberjack whose home he’ll be sharing, he knows who’ll chase away the pending holiday gloom. Too bad Tom doesn’t want to get with the programme.
Aiden has prepared a special kind of Easter egg for his boyfriend, Tristan. He wants to make their first Easter together special, memorable, but as the moment for handing over the egg draws nearer, Aiden’s nerves get the better of him. What if he has it all wrong and Tristan wants nothing to do with silky satin hidden within the egg?
Chris Hart owns the only grocery shop in Nortown, but he isn’t exactly overrun by customers. Some days he wonders why he bothers to open the doors at all. Gabriel Miller loves his life. But all of it is taken away when he witnesses a murder. When the danger follows Gabe to Nortown, it’s more than their chance at happiness that is threatened. Chris and Gabe find themselves fighting to stay alive.
Aiden leaves the security of his massage studio behind to rush into the woods when he hears Tristan has gone after some gun-carrying idiots from the city. He can’t believe Tristan is willing to risk his life for some stranger. What will Aiden do if Tristan is killed? He must stop him before it’s too late. He can’t lose Tristan.

X-mas Read | Honey Baked

“Eww! It’s goats’ cheese.”
“Drizzled in honey.” Jian popped one in his mouth too. “Delicious.”
“Nasty! Those will not go on the menu.”
“I knew you’d say that.”
“Why did you make me eat it?”
His eyes sparkled as he met Victor’s gaze. “Because I hope you’ll learn to love goats’ cheese one day, and we can have some goats’ cheese and honey kind of fun.”
Victor scrunched up his face. “We’re not the kind of people who mix food and sex, it’s not sanitary.”
The laugh filled Victor’s chest with tingles. “One day, darling.”

That’s Victor and Jian talking from 24 Dates. Notice how the cheese and honey aren’t sanitary? John and Zachary from Honey Baked may or may not agree.

Eww, as Victor says above, was Amy Spector’s reaction when she beta-read Honey Baked for me LOL

This is a short story, featuring John and Zach from Once in May. Of all the Nortown stories, Once in May is my favourite. While I’ve written several short stories with Aiden and Tristan, John and Zach are the only other characters getting to continue outside their main story.

Tristan is supposed to dress up as Santa but gets sick, so Zach has to cover for him.

Honey baked honey


Carefully placing the morsel in John’s mouth, he almost groaned as John’s lips closed around his fingers.

“Mm…” John nodded and chewed.


“You always make things better.”

“I do?”

“Of course. Give me more.”

Zachary huffed a laugh and reached for another piece, but before he fed it to John, he leaned in until their lips practically touched. “It might cost you.”

John brought their lips together, the fake beard getting in the way, and giggled, plucking the rye bread from Zach’s hand. “Take off the beard.”

“I won’t be Santa if I do,” Zach protested but gladly got rid of the beard. It was itchy and hot.

John rearranged himself, sliding his butt higher up Zach’s leg. “Yeah…” He buried his fingertips in his real beard. “Perhaps my Santa hasn’t gone all white-haired yet.”

Zach curled his hand around John’s hip. “Any more wishes I may fulfil?”


Nervousness flitted through John’s chest. “There might be something…”

“Yeah?” Zachary’s blue eyes were filled with mischief, and John hesitated. It was a far too serious request to bring up here, not like they were gonna do it here anyway, and saying it out loud only to then have it hanging over him would be too stressful. And what if Zachary didn’t want to, or wanted it and then would be disappointed?

“What are you thinking?” Zachary was still smiling, but he was too good at reading John by now not to notice something was up. John could see it in the way some of the sparkles in his eyes died.

“It’s nothing.”

“Tell me. I’m Santa, remember? I already know everything anyway.”

John smiled. “You do, huh? What was I thinking, then, Santa?” He could play. He might not be good at it, always fearing he’d say the wrong thing or give a false impression, but what could go wrong playing with Santa?

“You were thinking how you want to eat honey-baked Brie off my bare stomach.” Zach gave him a serious look. “I know because I read minds. Nothing to be embarrassed about. Many have that wish.”

John swallowed a laugh. “And you let them? I’m not sure I want to eat Brie from there if half the town have already been smearing theirs around.”

“Ha! You naughty little…of course, I don’t lend my stomach out to anyone. Only to the ones who are dear to me.”

“Of course, of course. You were wrong, though. It wasn’t what I was thinking.” John reached for the cheese knife and cut himself a piece, making sure he got plenty of honey and almonds on it.

Honey-BakedAll John wants is to stay at home in peace and quiet, but when the Santa booked for the town’s Christmas party at Jen’s cafe catches a fever, Zachary decides to take his place. It’s just for a few hours, John should be able to take part in the celebrations like any normal person, but instead, he finds himself hiding in the kitchen, eating loads of the delicious honey baked Brie cheese Jen has made.

Zachary loved the town’s Christmas party as a child, and he wants to spread some holiday cheer both to the kids in Nortown and to John. Being Santa is not as easy as he thought it would be, though. And how he’s gonna be able to lure John out of the kitchen and get him to sit on Santa’s lap, he doesn’t know.

X-mas Read | Once in a Snowstorm


There isn’t anyone visiting today, so I thought I’d share a little about Once in a Snowstorm

This was a long time ago, and it was a spur of the moment thing. It’s crazy, becuase I know I wrote on this story during NaNo, so in November 2015, and it was released on December 8th the same year. On January 8th 2016, one month later, I gave birth to my youngest daughter. How the heck did I have the energy to write? I suspect it was the only thing I had the energy to do.

Anyway, Once in a Snowstorm is a bit over the top… you know, a bit much LOL. I had this idea of cramming as many of the M/M romance tropes out there into one story as possible. 

It started as a joke. I was chatting with Al Stewart and Amy Spector – I still do on a daily basis – and we were having a laugh about how every character was named Tristan or Aiden, how responsive ever bottom was, and how he always has green eyes, and so on and so on – I give you Aiden and Tristan LOL

Avoid Tourist Traps


“Og!” The dark and the snowflakes made it hard to see. Nothing but snow-covered tree trunks and not a dog to be found.

Another bark came from close by. Tristan squinted into the woods. Og’s bright eyes glowed in the dark. A white-spotted dog was not easy to locate when everything was white-spotted, but now Tristan knew what he was looking at, he could see that Og was indeed trapped. A dark figure held on to his collar, not that Og appeared to be bothered, judging by the happy thump of his tail against the snow, creating a white cloud around both him and the person on the ground.

Tristan took a careful step closer. His grip on the shovel tightened. What kind of lunatic comes into the woods in weather like this?

“Hello?” Tristan stopped a couple of metres away from the body—a man, he saw now—and waited for a response. Only a muffled groan came. Fuck!

Tristan dropped the shovel and hurried forward to the man and shook him lightly. “Hey. Come on, wake up.” The eyelids fluttered as the man tried to open his eyes. Tristan touched his forehead—icy cold. The man was almost completely covered in snow and his hair was wet—Tristan assumed his clothes were, too. Without thinking, he reached for the man’s hand, shook loose his fingers from Og’s collar, and started to pull him out of the snow.

He sighed as he took in the trendy jeans and sneakers. Why can’t people dress according to the weather? If Og hadn’t found him, he’d have frozen to death—he wouldn’t look so pretty in his designer clothes in a casket.

He hefted the man up in a fireman’s lift and started making his way towards the cabin. It was like carrying an ice block. He guessed he should be pleased about the man being short and small framed. His curly dark hair flopped around his face with each step Tristan took.

They weren’t far from the cabin, but ploughing through the snow with the extra weight of the man and Og running around his legs had Tristan sweating and out of breath in no time at all. He grunted as he sank knee-deep into the snow, mentally cursing the stupid man for walking into his forest. He couldn’t stay angry, though. He worried about the man being injured. It would be impossible to get an ambulance out here, and Tristan only had a basic knowledge of first aid. First, he needed to get him out of his wet clothes, that much he knew. Hypothermia was serious business.

Once-in-a-SnowstormDaring a snowstorm might not be the smartest thing Aiden has ever done, but he can’t stand being in his flat a moment longer. With only three days to Christmas, he doesn’t want to be alone. He wants a place to belong, wants people around him who won’t look down on him. He might not find all that at his mother’s place, but at least it’s better than being alone in the city. If he can make it there, that is.

Tristan is looking forward to a quiet night in front of the TV, but instead, he has to save an idiot in designer clothes from freezing to death in his forest. Tristan tries not to notice the man’s good looks, just like he has tried not to notice any man’s good looks for the last seven years. He knows where relationships go and is far better off living alone, with his dog, in his cabin.

Aiden is driving Tristan mad with his bratty comments and irresponsible ways, and Aiden is going crazy from Tristan’s judgmental attitude. Luckily, in a few days, the weather will clear up, and the two men won’t have to be together any longer. But will a few steamy nights with the grumpy lumberjack change Aiden’s mind about wanting to leave? And will Tristan still want to go back to his peaceful, predictable life without fear of getting his heart broken?