So very happy to have my friends Maisey Yates and Nicole Helm guesting on my blog. You will know USA Today Bestseller Maisey Yates from her incredible bestselling Harlequin Presents and cowboy romances for Berkley and HQN and Nicole writes popular contemporary romances for Harlequin and Samhain and now both have written a story for Tule’s Married in Marietta brides series.
I can’t wait for you to get to know them better so take it away Nicole and Maisey!
Nicole: I’m so excited to be here talking about my very first Tule novella, Bride By Mistake. I loved learning about Marietta, and adding my characters into this amazing world. I’ve always written about small towns and love exploring what that can mean for a person’s reputation and identity.
I was so lucky to land smack dab in the middle of the now-infamous celebrity wedding that connects all of the Montana Born Brides novellas together. My heroine, one of the floral designers for the wedding, is none too pleased with the crazy demands, but mostly, she’s dealing with her own problems!
Not only was it so fun to be able to join the Tule ranks, but I also got to work with my good friend Maisey Yates. We decided that not only would her hero be my heroine’s older brother, but that our heroes would be best friends who’d had a falling out.
It was never a question of would they punch each other, it was only a question of why, and the challenge of somehow making them both…kinda right and kinda wrong. Possibly we’re also just a little weird and enjoy writing characters who get into a physical fight.
And here’s a little peek at said fight!
He was taken off guard by the fist to his face, though he couldn’t say he was surprised. He’d figured this thing with Luke would have to come to blows eventually. He just thought he’d have a little more warning to throw up a block.
He stumbled backward, pain radiating across his cheekbone, and then Luke’s hand was grasping his shirt, propelling him back toward the wall.
“Stop that! Stop that right now!” Kaitlin yelled, charging for them, but Beckett held up a hand and she stopped short.
“Let him get it out of his system,” he said, trying to keep any pain or reaction out of his words. She might not think she was fragile, but he knew the life just coming to being inside of her was.
Luke shoved him hard against the wall, and when Beckett rolled his eyes, Luke gave another sharp push, fingers twisting tighter in his shirt.
“Listen to me and listen to me good, Beckett Larson. You will keep your bad seed shit away from her.”
He had all the best intentions of being reasonable and level headed—for Kaitlin. He didn’t want to cause her any more pain or stress. Not right now, but that little quip erased all the good intentions from his brain and his fist was connecting with Luke’s face before Beckett even realized he’d reared back his arm.
It was Luke’s turn to stumble backward, and Beckett’s turn to advance on him. “Get out of my apartment.”
“Get out. Right. Now. Your sister and I have things to discuss and none of those things involve you.”
Maisey: When I first got involved with doing this series for Tule, I said to Nicole over text: I know! I’ll write your heroine’s brother!
Which sounded like a lot of fun, but of course I forget that collaborations with other authors are always take more coordination and a lot more consensus. Writing is usually pretty solitary, but when you’re bringing someone else’s characters onto your pages you have to find a balance between your voice and their vision.
Fortunately, Nicole and I have one mind. (Except when it comes to pie. She doesn’t like pie because she’s weird and might not have a soul)
There were a few times our book world’s crossed. Here’s a scene between Luke and his sister Kaitlin in my book Finally His Bride:
“Luke,” she said, her eyes round.
“Yeah, did you think that I left town?”
He scowled. “You wouldn’t have had to wonder if you would have answered any of my phone calls.”
“I’ve been a little bit busy dealing with the epic curveball that I was just thrown my life, nothing personal.”
“What’s going on with you and Beckett?”
Kaitlin’s brows locked together. “Beckett is currently making like a burrowing owl up in my apartment.”
“I have no idea what that means.”
“It means he moved into my house,” she said. “Without giving you a biology lesson.”
“What? So he sells his stake in the business, is currently unemployed, knocks you up, and then moves in with you?”
Kaitlin’s hands curled into fists. “It isn’t like that.”
“I have half a mind to go over and boot his ass out.”
Kaitlin growled and Luke took a step back. He wasn’t used to his sister being quite so pigheaded. “Beckett is my problem, not yours. I’ll decide what to do with him when I’m ready.”
“Or, maybe you make a decision when he isn’t in your space trying to force your hand.”
“I didn’t say he was in my space. I didn’t say that I wanted him gone.”
“Well, do you want him there?” She said nothing, she just stared straight ahead, her eyes glittering, her expression defiant. “I didn’t think so. You need to get rid of him, the sooner the better. You’re going to have mom and dad support. You know you have mine. That is going to be nothing but a drain on you. You don’t need him involved.”
“It’s not your decision to make, Luke.”
Thank you, Nicole and Maisey for the little peeks into your stories! Readers, if you didn’t already grab your downloads for Bride By Mistake and Finally His Bride, do it soon. And as always, I have a fun giveaway for one of you, full of books, giftcards, and girly goodies too! For a chance to win, leave a comment below. Tell me what you love most about weddings and you’ll be entered. Contest ends Monday night with winner announced on Tuesday.