I have spent the weekend writing furiously to finish my current manuscript and the writing, while incredibly intense, has been rewarding. I’m ready to take a little time to relax now and tell you about an incredibly talented author and friend, Brooke Moss.
A couple of years ago, I was given a sneak peek at Brooke’s novel, The “What If” Guy. I so enjoyed it. Packed with emotion, witty and fun, Brooke’s writing pulled me in right away. You know me. I love books with emotion, great characterization and entertaining plots. Brooke Moss provides all of that and more in her stories and I’m happy to introduce her to you all today. So without further ado, here’s Brooke Moss!
Thanks for hosting me today, Jane! What an exciting privilege it is to guest post on the blog of one of my favorite authors. I appreciate you, and your lovely readers, giving me their time!
So as I stand here on the debut day of my first ever self-published romantic comedy, Baby & Bump, I can’t help but feel compelled to explain where the inspiration for this story came from. After all, it’s not every day you see a contemporary romance with a pregnant heroine. And isn’t that a little…er…weird?
Well, yeah. Welcome to my world, everybody. Come on in, the water’s fine.
You see, all authors get inspiration for their stories and characters from all sorts of places. The grocery store, through their friend’s lives, television, movies, other books, everywhere! We see typical couples arguing beside the ATM, or waiting for a doctor’s appointment, and a story blossoms in our over-active imaginations. At least that’s what happens to me.
In the case of Baby & Bump, my inspiration came from a comment on my girlfriend’s Facebook page. She was griping about having gone to an OB appointment (she was very pregnant at the time) with one of her usual doctor’s partners—who also happened to be a very hot man. She was lamenting that she felt uncomfortable and stressed out the whole appointment, and asked the question: how could ANY woman endure a pregnancy with a gorgeous, single obstetrician?
And well, that’s when the ball in my mind started rolling. I decided to write a book about a single woman and her highly attractive doctor. And since a topic like this can’t exactly be told without a drizzle of humor, I decided that the only way I would be able to do the subject matter some justice was to make the story a full-on, no holds barred comedy.
I mean, come on. How else can I tackle the subject of stirrups and speculums in a book without making it funny? If you’re a woman, you get why.
And so, Baby & Bump was born. Shortly after that, the crazy cast of side characters were created, and the subject line, location, and plot conundrums were invented. Writing this book was a “labor” of love (pun intended), as I found myself laughing out loud and tearing up over my laptop more than once or twice. I adore these characters, and the tale they had to tell, and I’m hoping that each of my readers—old and new—will enjoy them as much as I did. They’re silly, goofy, flawed, quirky, unique, and very, very human. And I don’t know about you guys, but I like my characters in contemporary romance to be as human as possible. Perhaps that’s why I enjoy Jane’s books so much. They’re so relatable.
I hope to achieve that with my own characters. You’ll all have to let me know how I did…
Now that I’ve rambled on and on about my inspiration for Baby & Bump, how about an excerpt? Here’s a scene where Lexie (our heroine) is having her first obstetrical appointment with none other than the very lovely Dr. Fletcher Haybee. And like my friend said on Facebook…is there anything more uncomfortable than a hot OB?
But Dr. Haybee went past handsome. In fact, he went so far past handsome he was down the road and around the bend.
His doctor’s coat was hanging open to reveal what appeared to be a worn denim shirt and a pair of cargo khakis. He was tan. Not overly tan, like one of those Jersey Beach freaks, or whatever that show was called—not that I ever watched it—but perfectly sun-kissed like he’d spent the weekend outside. Doing yard work. With his shirt off.
His hair was blond streaked with platinum, probably the result of a summer spent on a beach somewhere, and it was tousled into a disheveled “I need a haircut, but I’m too busy wakeboarding and mountain biking to care” look. When he raised his eyes off the manila folder full of my medical facts—height, last menstrual cycle—and, gulp—weight—I noticed that his eyes were the most crystal aquamarine blue I’d ever seen. They were the exact same color of a Tiffany jewelry box. And, as if I weren’t ready to howl like a dog in heat already, when he opened his mouth to greet me, his deep voice positively oozed charm with its Southern accent.
“You must be Lexie. Hi, I’m Fletcher Haybee. How are you?”
“I… I… uh…”
My brain had shut off. I was sitting there, naked from the waist down, covered in a glorified quicker picker upper, staring at the best-looking man I’d ever seen.
“She’s fine.” Candace snickered.
The lovely doctor’s eyes brightened. “Candace? What’s up? Is this your sister?”
“Cousin. She just found out she’s pregnant.” Candace nudged me. “Say hello, Lex.”
“Hello, Lex. Er, Dr. Haybee.” I blinked a few times and focused on the tee shirt underneath his worn denim button down.
Holy hell, it was a vintage Aerosmith tee shirt! If there had been water in the examination room, he could have walked on it.
“Call me Fletcher.” His accent made my toes, clad only in blue and white striped socks with dancing hippos on the heels (what was I thinking?) curl deliciously. “Any cousin of Candace and Brian’s is a friend of mine.”
I ignored Candace’s knowing grin as I tried to put on my game face. Well, as much of a game face as I could have without any pants on. “You… you don’t look like a doctor.”
“Thank you. I take that as a compliment.” He grinned and the corners of his eyes crinkled. I swear to God a ray of sunshine busted through the roof, illuminating him.
“He’s the best OB in town.” Candace announced proudly. “Remember when I had preeclampsia with Ellie’s pregnancy and had bed rest?”
I peeled my eyes away from Fletcher. “Uh huh.”
“Fletcher did all of the appointments in my last trimester at our house.” She beamed. “How many doctors do house calls these days?”
Glancing back at Fletcher, who was nodding humbly, I replied, “Not many.”
He laughed, and the deep, rumbling sound made the hair on the back of my neck stand at attention. “That’s just one of the perks of being friends with your obstetrician.”
I was staring at him. I couldn’t help it. How did I miss this guy through all three of Candace’s pregnancies? Why hadn’t she dragged me to this office sooner?
Say when I wasn’t pregnant and my face wasn’t the same shade of grey as a gas station bathroom?
Fletcher put down my file and approached me. “Well, Lexie, it’s nice to meet you.”
“It’s nice to meet you, too.” We shook hands, and I bit the insides of my cheeks.
“My nurse tested the urine sample you left in the restroom, and as you know, you’re pregnant. Congratulations.” He tucked his hands into his pockets. “Otherwise, your white cell count looked good, and there wasn’t too much protein in your urine, so that’s great. Was this a planned pregnancy?”
I swallowed and ignored Candace’s eyes probing the side of my face. “No.”
His expression softened. “Do you want to discuss options? Are you planning to parent the child?”
“Yes. Of course.” I tucked my hair behind my ears. “I always hoped to have children. Just didn’t plan on doing it alone.”
Fletcher appeared surprised. “Oh, you’ll be a single mom?”
“Yes. Unless you’d like to marry me.” I mumbled that last part.
“Excuse me?” he asked.
“Nothing!” I squeaked.
I fought the urge to slap myself on the forehead, and looked away from his bright eyes. There was something really wrong with me if I was this attracted to my obstetrician. I mean, within a matter of minutes, he was going to be looking at my crotch, for Pete’s sake. And not in a Fifty Shades of Grey way, either. Argh.
“I’ll have my receptionist give you some information about some local single mother support groups. That might be a great outlet for you.” Fletcher made a note on my chart, then gestured to the papered examination table behind me. “Why don’t you lay back, and I can do the examination.”
“Oh, um, okay.” I looked at Candace dumbly, who gestured for me to lie down. A wave of self-consciousness rolled over me.
The last time I’d been partially unclothed in front of a man, I’d been drinking overpriced merlot and watching made-for-TV movies. My buzz had made me feel invincible. I most certainly did not feel invincible on Fletcher’s examination table. I felt unbearably naked, and suddenly aware of every single ounce of cellulite and every single freckle I had on my ultra-white skin. I wish I’d had the good sense to get a decent spray tan before coming to the obstetrician’s office.
Again, thanks for having me here today, Jane, and keep the great books coming! I am honored to possibly share readers with you, and can’t wait to hear what your fans think of Baby & Bump!
“I write because if I don’t…my head will explode, and ruin the drapes.” ♥ Brooke writes complex, character-driven stories about kismet, reunited lovers, first love, and the kind of romance that we should all have the chance at finding. She prefers her stories laced with some humor just for fun, and enough drama to keep her readers flipping the pages, and begging for more. When Brooke isn’t spinning tales, she spends her time drawing/cartooning, reading, watching movies then comparing them to books, wrangling five kids, mugging on one hubby she lovingly refers to as her “nerd”, and attempting to conquer the Mount Everest of laundry that is the bane of her existence. Brooke is also an avid Autism Awareness advocate, and a passionate foster/adoptive mother, who loves to share her experiences with anyone who will listen. Find Brooke elsewhere on the web at www.brookemoss.com
Thank you, Brooke, for sharing with us today! Friends, do check out Brooke’s new release. To help Brooke celebrate, I’ve got a fun mystery giveaway which includes good books, a $5 Starbucks drink card and lots more fun goodies tucked into a JP reader bag for two lucky winners. If you love contemporary romances with lots of wit, comment for a chance to win this giveaway. The contest runs through Thursday and I’ll announce the winner on Friday!