It’s Excerpt Wednesday! And now that I’m back from traveling to the ends of the earth, meeting people at conferences and planning new and exciting projects to share with you all, it’s time I got back into the groove of posting tidbits from upcoming work. So here it is, the third book in my contemporary series (Second Chances), the story of Benjamin Paul, who you met in One Night with a Star, and his heroine, who just happens to be a romance novelist. She’s not autobiographical! Although I wouldn’t say no to a hunky director like Ben! Here you go, a sneak peek at Catch a Falling Star….
Ben got up to search for his jeans and to fish his cell phone from the pocket. Sure enough, there was a missed call. Speaking of people who had him by the balls…. He tapped the phone to call the Pollard twins back.
“Ben, where are you?” Jett Pollard answered. He was irritated, pissy, but not pissed yet. It was as good a start as Ben was going to get.
“Sorry, Jett. Something came up.” It certainly had. It had been coming up again until this particular slice of reality reared its ugly head.
“Can you make it to Café Lunch by four?” Ashton Pollard’s voice asked through speakerphone. Ben wasn’t surprised. Where there was Jett, there was always Ashton, over-styled hair, loud suits, fake-gay lilt, and all.
Ben glanced to the bathroom door, to the strip of light shining at the bottom. “Actually no. I’m going to have to cancel on you. Can we reschedule for tomorrow?”
Jett sighed. Now he was pissed. “Seriously, Ben? Broadway Snitch comes out with a salacious tell-all about how you slept your way to that award, and you’re too busy to talk to the only people who can stop your career from going into a tailspin?”
Ben’s gut clenched. He rubbed the sudden kink in his neck. He would not admit to fear. He would not panic. To convince himself as much as the Pollard twins, he heaved a stern sigh. “Jett, Ashton, it’s time to get real. Broadway Snitch is a two-bit gossip rag that would call Little Orphan Annie a twenty-dollar a night whore if they spotted her with a button undone. They’re a tabloid.”
“Do you know how many people read tabloids, Ben?” Ashton chirped.
I’m probably talking to two right now. “It’s meaningless,” he said aloud. “Let them titillate a few people. The award is mine, it’s a done deal. I’m more interested in looking ahead. Tomorrow I’ll explain to you all the reasons why this new musical, Last Closing Time, will be the next big smash hit, and why we’ll all make an obscene amount of money if—”
“We’re not going to make or do or pay for anything,” Jett cut him off. “We are going to sit patiently and wait for what had better be the best explanation of a rumor that we’ve heard in our lives. Otherwise you are going to be short one production team and an ass-load of cash.”
Ben ground his teeth. He stared out the tinted windows at the dreary Manhattan skyline, the gloomy view of Central Park. It wasn’t the first time he’d stood staring at the view while stark naked, but it was the first time he felt so goddamn exposed.
“It’s nothing.” He feigned nonchalance. “People always go after the top dog once he’s got the bone. That’s all this is.” Nothing to panic about, nothing to lose his head over. Keep telling yourself that, Benjamin.
Both Pollard twins clucked and hummed with doubt.
Ben pushed a hand through his hair, wondering where all that lovely, sexy confidence he’d felt minutes before with Jo had gone.
“Café Lunch, noon sharp tomorrow,” he said, taking charge. “I’ll answer all your questions, put all the rumors to bed, and we can go back to doing what we do best.”
“Making cheap, fluffy TV shows?” Ashton drawled, then burst into hissing laughter at his cheap shot.
Ben’s face tightened into a glare in spite of the fact that the twins couldn’t see it. “There’s nothing wrong with Second Chances.” His voice was too hard, too hurt. “It’s one of the top-rated programs on tv right now.”
“Oh, come on, Benny. Television is for plebeians with bad teeth and beer-breath. Any schmuck can make television,” Ashton said.
“Television is a 32 ounce soda from the convenience store,” Jett seconded. “Broadway is fifty-year-old scotch and a penthouse view of Central Park.”
“Unless you’d rather guzzle that soda with the unwashed masses,” Ashton finished.
Ben let a long, tense silence go by while he took a breath and bit back his instinctual reply. Okay, Second Chances wasn’t high art, but he enjoyed filming. He liked the talent involved. Spencer Ellis and Simon Mercer were among his closest friends. And there were far worse places than Maine to spend a few months out of the year shooting, even with all that wilderness.
He glanced over his shoulder at the bathroom. Maine. Jo lived in Maine.
Catch a Falling Star will be available at Amazon on October 27th! Stay tuned to find out exciting information about a special deal for my fans!