Today I am so pleased to welcome Pat Henshaw to Joyfully Jay. Pat has come to talk to us about her latest release, When Heart Becomes Home. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
Pat has written some questions and answers to share!
Q: How would you describe your writing style/genre?
A: I write contemporary gay romance fiction. Contemporary, for me, is still pre-COVID. My characters can go out to eat, get together at clubs for dancing and other contact recreation, and generally live as though a pandemic isn’t among them or about to hit. All the books are stories about how two men get together as a couple, so they are gay-centric. Romance? Ah, yes, romance. I don’t write about sex or have descriptive sex scenes in my books. For me, sex is a private act between two people that is a result of romance. My job as a romance author is to give my readers the ahhhh moment when they feel the world around them is cozy and filled with love. My job isn’t to have readers put down the book, beat off, and then read to the next masturbatory moment. There are enough romance writers on the market who provide that for readers.
Q: What writing length do you feel most comfortable with?
A: Most of my books are novellas or short stories, but with this latest book, I’m branching out to novel-length work. I like the novella length because it’s enough room to give the reader a complete story at one sitting that doesn’t take up an entire day or days at a time. I also like that novellas make me as an author focus on what the story is and tell it without digressing so much that the plot is lost. However, one of the recurring comments I get about my books is that readers wish the stories were longer. (And contained sex scenes, but see above for that answer.) So this new book is my first gay romance novel. I will probably go back to the novella format for additions to the Foothills Pride series and to the short story format for this year’s holiday story.
Q: What research did you do for this book?
A: When main character Wes goes back after fifteen years for a tour of his high school, he finds a very different place than he remembers. During the fifteen years, school shootings and takeovers have become the norm, so lockdown drills have become something students expect. Not so Wes, whose memories are about mistreatment by his fellow students. So I researched the current thinking in school planning and lockdown drills to make my descriptions more realistic.
Q: What are you working on next?
A: Currently, I’m writing another Heart/Home novel about a former cop who was wounded in a robbery gone wrong and who is now recuperating in Spindrift, California, a small town on coastal Route 1 near Mendocino. He’s prone to sudden brain glitches that incapacitate him. Worried about him, his parents persuade him to share his house with an artist who’s fresh out of a horrible relationship. As well as writing that book, I’m planning the next Foothills Pride books and a holiday short story. In other words, I’m still writing and loving it.
Is there a time limit on love and forgiveness?
Fifteen years ago, Manny didn’t show up to take Wes to the Shelby High School prom as he promised. Instead, Wes found Manny’s letter jacket at their meeting spot without a note or any explanation.
From college to his current job in Monterey, California, Wes has carted the jacket around as a memento of his teenage love and rejection. This year he decides enough is enough. He’s attending the high school class reunion, returning Manny’s jacket, and going home free to find the real love of his life.
When Manny sees Wes at the reunion tour of the new high school facilities, he’s determined not to let his teenage lover leave without them clearing the air and possibly getting back together.
Through reunion activities such as a quiz bowl, meet-and-greet meals, and a formal banquet with a prom-like ball as well as outside activities like the quinceañera of Manny’s niece, Wes and Manny work through the lies and misunderstandings of the past.
With so much to reconcile and forgive on both sides, will they end up together? Or go their separate ways with only memories of the past?
Pat Henshaw has spent her life surrounded by words: teaching English composition at the junior college level; writing book reviews for newspapers, magazines, and websites; helping students find information as a librarian; and promoting PBS television programs.
Pat was born and raised in Nebraska and since then has lived at various times in Texas, Colorado, Northern Virginia, and now Sacramento, California. Over the years, Pat has traveled to Mexico, Canada, Europe, Nicaragua, Thailand, and Egypt, and Stowe, Vermont, where she now has family.
Pat is giving away two $10 Amazon gift cards with this tour. Follow the Rafflecopter below to enter.
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