Please Welcome J. Colby!

First off, thank you Kim for having me here today! I’ll do my best not to leave a mess or too many crumbs or anything.

While I’m definitely excited for Playing the Lines to be released on July 22nd, this whole ‘pimp my writing’ thing is a bit new to me so hopefully I don’t do too terribly!

“If I were tired of you, I would have stopped walking when we passed the hotel,” he said. He knew it was a lie as soon as he said it. He’d promised he’d join Cory for dinner, and short of falling ill he wasn’t the type of person to back out on a promise.

“Would you have?”

He’d probably invited the question, but Elliot still hadn’t been expecting it and he was forced into giving it honest thought. He couldn’t help but look away though as he gave the question serious consideration.

In their careers, there was a lot of time spent doing things that pandered to clients or companies. Elliot was used to doing things he didn’t really enjoy. If he were honest with himself, he probably would have stayed even if he didn’t really want to. Except that right now he kind of wanted to. Cory seemed more interesting to him tonight, and he wanted to see more of that Cory, not the one who just flirted and smiled emptily. He wanted witty quips and the man who wanted to hear him talk.

“See?” Cory said. “You need to be more assertive. Stand up for yourself.”

Not liking the fact that once again Cory had clearly been able to tell just what he’d been thinking—or at least enough to know his feelings—Elliot frowned. It was more at himself than Cory, though. Maybe there was a lesson in poker faces that he could sign up for. How to Hide Your Thoughts 101. Yours for only five easy payments of $19.95. Surely there was something on the Shopping Channel—they sold everything.

“I stand up for myself when it matters,” he said after a long moment.

Cory’s disbelieving expression called him out on his rather obvious lie.

“I do,” he tried to insist, but it sounded weak even to him.

“And yet you don’t like me and I still managed to convince you to have dinner with me,” Cory said. He seemed nonplussed by the idea that Elliot didn’t like him.

“I don’t dislike you,” Elliot replied. It was true. Disliking something or someone was an active emotion. Up until tonight, he’d considered Cory a continued and necessary annoyance—and something to think about when he was bored and alone, not that he’d ever admit that—but that was about it. “And I need to eat. There didn’t seem any harm in having dinner with someone else.”

At least there hadn’t seemed like any harm in the idea until Cory had started acting so damn human. Now Elliot was wondering if he’d made a bad decision. He’d seen Cory charm people before and the last thing he needed was to fall for that charm.

“You don’t dislike me. Well, I certainly feel better now,” Cory said dryly.

Buy Links: Less Than Three Press * All Romance eBooks * * * Kobo
The idea for this short story actually came to me from a song, which in turn inspired Cory’s nickname in the modeling world: Angel Eyes. Points if you can tell me who sings it! 😉

As someone with… focus issues, I always have music or a movie playing when I write. Actually, when I do anything. It doesn’t really matter what it is—I have what my parents politely call ‘eclectic taste in music’—so it can be anything from Acid Black Cherry to Josh Groban to the Guess Who or even musicals. I just can’t do anything in silence.

The first cassette tape I ever wore out was actually my mother’s copy of Miss Saigon. I was terribly upset when she went to see it live and I wasn’t allowed to come. Of course, I was only nine at the time.

The second cassette was Carly Simon. I regret nothing.

What was your first ‘true love’ in music? I promise I won’t judge! Not that I have a leg to stand on when it comes to ‘weird’ tastes in music. Or anything. Have you ever had cold chicken tempura and vanilla ice cream together? It’s amazing.

I hope you give Playing the Lines a chance, and I really hope you like it!

J. Colby has been writing for as long as she could hold a pen, pencil, or crayon in her hand. Her mind never stops creating, which often leads to interesting dreams— and sometimes nightmares.

She has two cats that own her more than she owns them, and a full-time job that pays the bills and owns her more than her cats do.

Food, sleep, the smell of old books, and knitting are all things she loves on top of creating new worlds and the people in them. Though sometimes food more than any of the others.

Find J. Colby: Dreamwidth * Twitter * GoodReads