Writing A New Book, Suddenly Single

So Excited About This Book!

Writing has commenced on the third book in the Southern Discomfort series. You might wonder why I titled the series Southern Discomfort. It’s because the journey to love is rarely a smooth ride, but if you work at it, love always wins. To preorder your copy so it shows up on your ereader on the morning of December 27, go to your favorite store and hit that preorder button! Reserve your copy on Amazon, Kobo, Nook, Apple, and Google Play. Sorry, it’s not available for preorder on Smashwords yet, but will be soon. Here’s the prologue to the novel.

Carter- Three Years Ago

“I’m not getting on that thing.” I bitched. “You know I’m afraid of heights!”

“Then, why on earth did you want to go skiing? You know, on big, tall mountains thousands of feet above us?” Asher pointed at the white peaks surrounding us. “The only way up is in these gondolas”

“Karina told me how much fun Telluride is. But she didn’t mention mountains.” I huffed. “This haircut she gave me makes my chin look small.”

“For God’s sake, Carter. You’re the best-looking man in Richmond, and that includes your dimpled chin.” Asher took my hand and pulled me toward the shiny red gondola. “According to the sign, we’ll only be in the air for a few minutes, then we’ll…”

“I will hurl if I get in that thing.” I crossed my arms over my chest and felt stupid. Ever since I started dating Asher, I’d done all the rich-people stuff he was used to. Taking tennis lessons, joining the very expensive Country Club of Virginia, and now skiing in Colorado. According to my hairdresser, Telluride was the place to be if I wanted to up my social status. But did I have to be carried hundreds of feet in the air to do it?

“What if the cable snaps?”

“It won’t.” Asher sighed, then he held his hand out for me to take. “Let’s have a drink first. Maybe that will calm you down.”

“You want me to go skiing for the first time, drunk?” I took his hand, and he pulled me away from the gondola and back toward the main street. It reminded me of pictures I’d seen of snowy Switzerland.

“We don’t have to go skiing, Carter.” Asher murmured. “The whole point of this trip was to get away from our mothers and their friends. We never get to be alone.”

Asher had a point. Mom and I worked together as interior designers, while Asher worked at his mother’s law firm. Our lives were a constant swirl of bridge games, parties, and family gatherings. And you only learned how to play bridge for love. “So, you won’t be mad if I won’t go up on that gondola?”

“No.” Asher stopped walking, and I bumped into him, nearly knocking both of us down to the icy sidewalk. “I just want to be with you. But who knows, maybe a cocktail will calm you down enough to get on the stupid thing.”


“I love you, Carter. Please, believe me, I really, really, do.”

“Even if I’m not from a wealthy family?” That slipped out of my mouth before I thought about it. It was difficult being his boyfriend sometimes, because he was wealthy. I lacked something that was innate to him, and constantly struggled to act like living in mansions while being waited on by servants was normal.

“I wish you’d stop being weird about that.” Asher reached across the table and took my hand. “I can’t help it if I was born a Yates, and you can’t help that you were born into, well, a normal family. Though your mother is hardly normal.”

I smirked and took a sip of my gin and tonic. “Mom is a unique woman, but my business wouldn’t be flourishing without her help. She keeps everything running smoothly, so I can take impromptu trips to Colorado with you.”

Asher bit his lip, then squeezed my hand. “You’ve had three cocktails. Think you can brave the gondola ride now?”

“You really want me to ski for the first time with a buzz?” I giggled, and Asher shook his head and smiled.

“I have a surprise for you on top of Palmyra Peak, and it has nothing to do with skiing.” Asher gazed into my eyes, unblinking, and my pulse ticked up. Whenever he surprised me with something, it was always out of this world. Just a month ago, he’d blindfolded me, dragged me to the airport, and two hours later we were sitting in the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. I hated opera, but damn, talk about an over-the-top treat. 

“Fine.” I emptied my glass and Asher signaled the waiter for the check. “But if I get sick hundreds of feet in the air, you’re paying for the victim on the ground’s cleaning bill.”

* * *

We had the gondola to ourselves, thank God, and I kept my eyes shut the entire ride. “I’m going to throw up, I can feel it.”

“You’re fine, baby, only two more minutes.” Asher kissed my cheek. “I can see the station where we are landing.”

“It feels like we’re on a wobbly boat.” I opened my eyes for a second and saw Asher typing something on his phone. His lips twisted for a moment, then he shoved the phone back into the pocket of his beige parka. The gondola shook, and my eyes snapped shut again. “We’re going to die!”

“No, baby. Trust me, we’re going to be just fine.” I felt his breath hot against my cheek. A moment later, the gondola shook like we were in the middle of an earthquake. “We’re docking at the station, that’s all. Open your eyes, and you’ll see everything’s okay.”

I did as instructed, and was relieved to see he was right. It was strangely empty, except for a single person staring at our gondola. Once we were out of it, the stranger strolled up to us.

“Are you Asher Yates?” It was a woman’s voice. She was bundled up in a parka similar to the ones we were wearing. Asher smiled and nodded. “Come with me. We’ll be there in less than five minutes.”

“Who is she, and where is she taking us?”

Asher didn’t respond to my question. Instead, he placed his hand on the small of my back and pushed me forward. Once we were outside the station, I saw what appeared to be two sparkling blue snowmobiles. At least, I thought they were. I’d never seen one outside of the movies before.

“Here are our rides.” The woman gestured toward it. “Get in the one on the left and follow me.”

“Do you know how to drive one of these things?” I whispered, and sank down into the rear seat of the contraption. It had a seatbelt, so I snapped it in place and clutched the sides.

“Yes. I grew up driving these things around Telluride.” Asher grinned and started the engine. Being around him was surreal at times. Like, when we arrived, I expected us to stay at a hotel. A fancy hotel, of course. Instead, we were staying at the family compound, an enormous log mansion with fireplaces you could literally stand inside of. Moments later, we were heading up a mountain. 

The sound of swooshing snow and the engines made conversation impossible, so I tightened my hat and kept my face down to keep it from getting wet. Suddenly, we came to a stop.

“We’re here.” Asher said. “C’mon, get out and look at the view.”

I did as he asked, though when I stood up, I almost fell flat on my ass. My legs were shaking, and I smiled nervously toward Asher and the strange woman. She strolled through the snow until she was a few yards away. Asher gently pushed me forward until we were next to a giant boulder.

“Isn’t it amazing.” Asher put his arm around me, and for a moment, I forgot how to breathe. “I asked you here for a reason.” He murmured, and if I wasn’t mistaken, his voice was trembling.

“What is it?”

“Now that we’re away from our crazy families, I want to ask you a very serious question.” Asher dropped to his knees in the snow. My heart hammered in my chest. He grabbed my gloved hand and stared up at me. “If we were back in Richmond, everyone would make a big fuss over this, and I just want it to be you and me.”

“Yes.” I whispered. “Go on, ask me.”

“Carter Camden, I love you with all my heart and soul. Will you do me the honor of becoming my husband?” Asher asked, and at the same time, a bunch of snow blew on us. He waved his free hand in front of his face while I stared into his cobalt eyes. I opened my mouth to respond, but nothing came out. I wanted to say yes, scream it actually, but it was like I had a sudden onset of laryngitis. “Please, answer me, Carter.”

I nodded and croaked out, “Yes, of course, I’ll marry you.”

Asher leapt to his feet, let go of my hand, and cupped his hands around his mouth. “He said yes!” Asher screamed into the valley lying at our feet. I heard a clapping sound, and remembered the strange woman who’d come with us. She was strolling through the snow toward us when Asher pulled me into his chest and kissed me. 

“Gentlemen, are you prepared to do it now? Or do you need….”

“Now.” Asher exclaimed, and the biggest smile I’d ever smiled stretched across my cheeks. “You have the license and stuff?” He asked her, and she nodded.

“You planned this all along?” I asked, amazed at the romantic gesture. Asher nodded.

“My name is Linda Crawford and I’m a non-denominational officiant, licensed by the state of Colorado to perform weddings.” I heard her say, but I couldn’t take my eyes off of Asher. The man I loved more than anything or anyone else in the world was marrying me, a man who’d grown up poor on Richmond’s Southside. He could have had anyone he wanted, but he’d chosen me.

“I love you, Asher, more than you’ll ever know.”

I’m Glad My Mom Died: My Review

The author is facing controversy, and I think it’s wrong.

So I read a lot of books because it’s part of my job. Recently I purchased the audiobook of “I’m Glad My Mom Died” to listen to while working out. It’s hard to listen to, because I identify so much with her story.

I’d never heard of this actress before, mostly because I’m older, and wasn’t watching Nickleodeon when her show iCarly was a hit. I purchased this audiobook solely because of the title. I’m not going to tell you her story because I think you should read/listen to it yourself. For me, it was a revelation to hear someone speak their truth about such a sensitive topic. Abuse isn’t an easy matter to open up about, but after hearing her story I totally understand why she titled her book the way she did.

My mother is still alive, and no, I don’t wish she was dead. But I’ve divorced her from my life because the abuse Jennette McCurdy lived with is so similar to what I dealt with. This isn’t going to be a post about my life beyond pointing out a few similarities. My intention is to write my memoirs once my mother has passed away.

As a small child, my parents were like Gods to me, benevolent and kind. But as I grew older I realized things were very different in my house compared to other kids. When I was eight, my father caught the house on fire while drunk. And as I grew older the punishments became worse. I had scars on my ass and thighs that didn’t fade until I was in my late twenties. My mother was vicious with a leather belt. When they discovered I was gay by spying on a phone call with my future sister-in-law, things grew even worse. My parents kicked me out of the house when I was 17 for being gay. Before that, they kept me locked in the house for months at a time so I wouldn’t hang out with gay friends, not that I had many of them as a teenager. And the abuse didn’t stop when I was an adult. My niece was instructed by my mother to stay away from me, that I was evil.

My mother thinks I’m evil.

That’s just the tip of the iceburg. I’ve suffered with depression and eating disorders for decades now. Thankfully, the depression is mostly in the past. What I really identify with in her book is using humor to cope with darkness. There’s a reason I’ve made the decision only to write light-hearted rom-coms, so I can laugh instead of crying. Did enough of that already, and like Jennette, I like to think of myself moving forward, and not wallowing in the past.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who has suffered at the hands of abusive family members. You can purchase the audiobook/ebook/print book on Amazon, Apple Books, and Google Play.

Books, and finding my voice.

A place to sit your ass down, bookstyle, of course.

I love Guadalajara, and this bench is just one of dozens of book benches located throughout the city. This place celebrates books like no other city I’ve lived in. While they do have so-called normal bookstores, my favorites are the creepy ones the size of a closet. Those wonderfully spooky bookstores are dotted throughout the city.

Guadalajara, book capital of the world.

So, I’ve recently become more self-aware about my writing, specifically my voice, or style. Three years ago I started a series known as The Balcony Boys. The first book in the series was called Situationship, and I love the book and the characters, specifically the landlady, Dotty. She is a wise soul who counsels the tenants who live in her apartment building, and teaches at a ballet school in her basement. But, it was a difficult book to write and I couldn’t figure out why. Now, I know.

Shifters? Not sure about this one.

My typical novel is lighthearted, and fun, with both comedic elements and romance. Situationship is not that kind of book, and neither was the second book in the series, Max. They were so difficult to write, but at the time I believed I was stretching myself creatively. I was, but I’ve decided not to write such serious books in the future. It’s just not my style. I know many people who love serious dramas, but I’m not one of them, and I’m no longer forcing myself to write books I don’t enjoy writing. Let’s put it this way, if I’m not giggling during the editing process, the writing is off, and needs to be fixed.

Because of this self-realization I’ve decided to leave the series as is, and I’m not writing any more books in that world. So it’s a duet, not a full-fledged series. I worked my ass off writing them, and I love them. But from now on I’m staying true to my voice. You can purchase The Balcony Boys Duet in one volume at my personal bookstore, Apple, Kobo, Amazon, Nook, Google Play, and Smashwords.


Yesterday was exciting, but not in the fun, friendly way. An earthquake struck 90 km south of where I live, and trust me, I could feel it. The entire building I reside in shook, and scared the hell out of me! What’s odd is I was just sitting down to begin writing the latest novel in the Southern Discomfort series, which for now is called Suddenly Single. I can’t wait to tell ya’ll more about the novel, but since I’ve only written the prologue, give me a couple of weeks and I’ll tell you more about it. Stay safe readers!

Adios, Justin & Mateo

What began as a filthy fantasy ended a few days ago when I wrote "The End." Like most of my stories, I couldn't stop writing about them, and of course, they fell in love.

This ven diagram says it all, lol. So, most of you are well aware that I’m a slow burn author. For my readers who aren’t hardcore into romance, what that means is I typically only have one sex scene per novel. It’s my preference to have a slow buildup, so when the main characters finally do the deed, it’s because of love. With The Confessions series, the opposite took place. Justin and Mateo were scorching the sheets from the get go. This is why the author of this book is my alter ego, Luke Jameson. He’s kinda filthy, KWIM? But the ending, which I’m not sharing, is different than my usual books. They do have a happy ever after, so don’t fear that.

Me hard at work.

Currently I’m outlining the final book in the Southern Discomfort series. I never ask for people’s help plotting my work. But, if you have a favorite trope you’d like me to write, leave a comment. And what I mean is, do you love May/December romance, or opposites attract? Whatever it is you love to read, let me know. FYI- my favorite trope is second chances.

Justin’s latest book and the boxset of the entire collection are exclusively available at my personal bookstore until September 20, 2022. Afterward, it will be available at all major online booksellers. Remember, when you buy directly from me I get a higher royalty, which allows me to keep writing full-time, and buys me the occasional beer. Love you guys!

The Cad & Dad

This is how I imagined the character of Cary Lancaster.

For some reason this year I’ve been binging on old movies, which is how I came up with the name Cary Lancaster. Two of my favorite actors are Burt Lancaster and Cary Grant, so I put the two names together. The other character, Thatcher Atticus Fuller, is loosely based on yours truly. The name came about after rereading To Kill A Mockingbird, one of my favorite books.

Me, proud to be in my 50s.

I love romance, or I wouldn’t write it. But, I was tired of most romance novels being about young guys in their 20s and 30s. You may not believe it, but guys my age also date, fall in love, and well, I’ll leave the rest to your imagination. The reason for writing The Cad & Dad was so I could read about men my age falling in love. I must say, it’s one of my favorites.

The Cast of Designing Women

Since the novel is set in the American South, I binged on the 80s series Designing Women. My favorite character on the show was Charlene, played by the wonderful actress Jean Smart. She’s the inspiration for Thatch’s smart ass sister Celia Mae. When Celia Mae speaks, it’s Charlene’s voice I hear.

I hope everyone who reads it laughs out loud, because I certainly did. Currently I’m outlining the third and final book in the Southern Discomfort series. Plus, I already know what the next series is about. I’ll give you a hint- It’s set on the west coast of the USA, where magic is made. You can purchase The Cad & Dad at your favorite store here, or buy it directly from me at my bookstore. Love you readers! Talk to your soon.

About Justin…

Catedral de Guadalajara

I’m currently working on the final installment of the Confessions series, Justin’s Ecstasy. I was recently asked about my inspiration for the series, because I normally write romance. Yes, there are romantic elements to the series, and Father Mateo and Justin will have a happy ever after, but what provoked me to write about these two is different than usual.

A shrine to Mary I pass on my morning walk.

First, I’m surrounded by catholicism. There are several enormous cathedrals within walking distance, and shrines like the one pictured above are all over the city. I see members of the clergy and nuns strolling around daily, and last year I saw a handsome priest who took my breath away. He had dark, curly hair, and a smile so brilliant it made my heart skip a beat. Within hours I knew I had to write about him, and Father Mateo emerged from my psyche.

This provoked memories of an affair I had with a priest many years ago. I rarely speak of it, but perhaps it left me with a fetish for clergy? Anyhow, on September 20, 2022 Justin’s Ecstasy will be published, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the journey of writing about these two. You can preorder Justin’s ecstasy from the bookstore of your choice by clicking here. My books are available at all major bookstores, plus my personal bookstore.


It’s been years in the making, but I finally have my website up and running. I aim to post once a week or so, and look forward to getting to know my readers better. Mostly I will post about my life here in Mexico, and about my writing. Be sure to check out the My Books page to see all of my work, plus I now have my own personal bookstore. Can’t wait to chat with ya’ll soon, but I have to get back to work. I’m currently writing the final installment of the Confessions series, which is the tale of two men of the cloth falling in love. Where I live in Guadalajara is surrounded by massive cathedrals, and I routinely see nuns and priests on a daily basis. Why do I find priests so sexy? Probably because they are unattainable. Sigh.