Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Weds Brief- Mall Walking

It's that time of the week again.  Time to flash.  I got inspired by a trip I made last Sat to the Cherry Blossom Festival in DC.    I went to have lunch with my nephew, he was in town, and then went on a Meetup later in the day.  We went on a cruise down Washington Channel and saw plenty of cherry blossoms.

Here are this week's prompts:

“Come on, look at me." 
“What about the…?”
“Do you know what you’re doing?”
“Just call me your wing man.”
“Oh, this should be good.”
“Be good or be good at it.”
“Please tell me you didn’t spend much on that thing.”
“We have to make up time somehow.”
or use a swimming pool in some way
or use: hammer, grass, tile
or plant flowers in a flower bed
or use have a character paint a room
or use: books, water hose, coal
or use: shoes, cereal, wine
 or: resurrection
or have a gay Easter celebration
or "He died for our sins, you know. Doesn't mean you gotta keep sinning."
or "Moses parted the Red Sea a lot better than you part your hair, dude..."
or "Keep that up and all you'll have in your basket will be a rabbit turd!"
or: "One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small..."

Here is Tom and Ben's DC adventure

Mall Walking by Lily Sawyer

“Oh this is just insane.”  Tom reached out and grabbed hold of Ben’s hand and held on tight as they made their way through the wall of people.

“Do you know what you’re doing?”  he asked his husband.  All he could see was the back of his head as Ben led the way down Independence Avenue.  They were staying at a place near Union Station; they’d arrived there on Amtrak yesterday.   They’d always wanted to see the Cherry Blossom Festival and here they were, at the last weekend of the event.   The trip seemed like a good idea until they left their hotel after lunch. Well, they were tired from their trip, and they had breakfast sent up to their room, and then they got ‘busy’ after they fed each other crepes and whipped cream and all that other fun and yummy stuff.

“Come on, Tom, stop being a stick in the mud. You know this was the only time both of us could get off, so stop complaining and enjoy the sights.  Take a look at the museums we pass, and tell me which ones you want to see while we’re here.”

They walked past the Capitol building, stopping long enough to have their picture taken in front of the steps and the dome.   There was always someone to ask to take their picture.   ,They walked past a park with cherry blossom trees.  

“Hey, Ben, look. Cherry blossoms.  We can stop now.”  Tom pointed at the lovely blossoms that were blooming on a tree at a random park they came upon. 

“Oh no, we’re going to the Tidal Basin.   If it was only the cherry blossoms we were looking for, we could have stayed in Lancaster. There are cherry trees there, too.”

“There are?”  Tom feigned ignorance.  He knew that this trip was more than just seeing the trees. It was seeing them on the Tidal Basin, and the history of how the Japanese gifted the trees to the US.  Tom looked up the cherry blossom festival on his IPhone and this is what the site said:

Each year, the National Cherry Blossom Festival commemorates the 1912 gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington, DC. The gift and annual celebration honor the lasting friendship between the United States and Japan and the continued close relationship between the two countries.

They passed by the US Botanical Garden, the American Indian Museum, the back of the Air and Space Museum, the Smithsonian Castle, the African museum, and the Sackler, famous for its Asian art.

“Hey, isn’t there a tunnel connecting the Sackler to the Freer museum?” Tom asked. He had done some research about the various museums that make up the Smithsonian complex. 

“I think so,” Ben said.  He’d been to DC two times before, once on a school field trip. “We’ll have to put it on our list of things to do.” 

They continued on their way.  

“Hey, look, does that boat look like a duck?”  Both men stopped at 12th St for a traffic light, waiting to cross the street, and saw a vehicle that looked like a cross between a car and a boat.   It said Duck Boat tours on the side, and people were waving at them.  They waved back.

“We’ll have to check that out. Now come on.”  Ben pulled Tom along and they walked down to the Tidal Basin.    The crowd seemed to fan out in the open space.   All along the perimeter of the water were gorgeous cherry blossoms as far as the eye could see.   Ben took his cell phone out and started clicking away at the gorgeous scenery.   Across the water was the Jefferson Memorial. It, too, was surrounded by the flowering trees.   There were people in paddleboats sailing across the water. 

“Want to do that?”  Ben asked him. 

“Maybe later, let’s just walk around.”   They walked over to the Jefferson Memorial, hand in hand. It was breathtaking.  At one point when you turned around, you could see the top of the Washington Monument jutting up just above the tree line.  

“Gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous. Hey, Tom.  Want to go on a Cherry Blossom cruise?   They have one this afternoon around four. We could cruise along Washington Channel.  I love being out on the water.” They’d walked over to the memorial and saw a brass band playing, and sat on the steps to enjoy the music.   Tom leaned over and kissed Ben. 

“I enjoy being anywhere with you, Ben.”

“Me too.”  Ben kissed him back.   They stayed like that, enjoying the blossoms, the Tidal Basin, music, and more importantly…each other.


My fellow authors


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Welcome author Julie Lynn Hayes to my blog today

I'd like to welcome back author Julie Lynn Hayes.  Today she is here to promote her latest book
"Yes He's My Ex."

Thanks for having me on your blog! Today I’d like to tell you about my newest release from Dreamspinner Press. Yes, He’s My Ex is a screwball comedy about Sonny and Tim, two fairly ordinary guys who have rather un-ordinary things happen to them. They’re not together. But Sonny tends to forget that, and then... well, I hope you enjoy it!

Sometimes Sonny Scrignoli forgets he’s Tim Mansfield’s ex. He waltzes in and out of Tim’s apartment like he still lives there, driving Tim crazy. Is it really so hard to remember they’ve broken up? Then again, maybe Tim should quit having sex with him. 

When Sonny disappears for two weeks, Tim can’t help but be concerned. A strange phone call and a mysterious cry for help leads Tim on a desperate search for his ex.

Sonny’s in big trouble, and it’s Tim to the rescue! He’s the only one who can save his ex from a fate worse than death. Bumbling gangsters, a thick-headed former boyfriend, and secretive FBI agents lead Tim and Sonny on a merry chase full of laughs and quirks.
Sonny’s real name is Mario, but he’s been called Sonny since he was a small bambino, as his mother puts it, so Sonny it is. Sonny stands almost six foot tall in his bare feet, which are surprisingly small for a man, almost dainty. He has chocolate brown hair that grows thick but not long, and generally looks tousled; blue eyes so dark that sometimes they look purple in the proper light, framed behind silver wire spectacles; a generous nose and wide sweet lips which have been known to give the most amazing head this side of anywhere. Put that with the body of an Adonis, and you have Sonny.
I had Sonny, but not anymore. He seems not to realize that, though. At least not most of the time. Hence the part where I see him more often than should be considered normal for someone who’s my ex. Which is where I began.
Sometimes I think he forgets that he has indeed attained that past participle ex-boyfriend status. Granted, it’s only been six months. His mother tells me he just needs time to adjust, please don’t be too hard on her boy. Yes, I still see her too. On a rather regular basis, in fact. Hard not to, when she’s my mother’s best friend. Lucky me. Lia’s a nice lady, I love her to death. But she has this deep-seated belief that Sonny and I are going to get back together again, a belief he seems to share. Along with my mother. And most of our friends.
No one seems to listen to me when I say snowballs rolling along the floor of Hell have a better chance of survival than our relationship. Least of all Sonny. I guess that’s why he keeps coming over here, because in some strange deranged na├»ve corner of his mind, there’s still an us, and he isn’t an ex. So he wanders over whenever he wants. Sometimes he calls, sometimes he doesn’t. Today he called.
Sometimes I just get tired of telling him no. Some days I don’t even get that far. Today, I didn’t want to waste my breath, so I just said, “Fine. As long as you promise to behave.”
By behave, I mean quit assuming we’re going to have sex. Even if sometimes we do. I know, I know, he’s my ex, right?
Sometimes I just don’t know where to draw that fine line, I think. No wonder the boy’s confused.
Meet the author:
Julie Lynn Hayes was reading at the age of two and writing by the age of nine and always wanted to be a writer when she grew up. Two marriages, five children, and more than forty years later, that is still her dream. She blames her younger daughters for introducing her to yaoi and the world of M/M love, a world which has captured her imagination and her heart and fueled her writing in ways she'd never dreamed of before. She especially loves stories of two men finding true love and happiness in one another's arms and is a great believer in the happily ever after. She lives in St. Louis with her daughter Sarah and two cats, loves books and movies, and hopes to be a world traveler some day. She enjoys crafts, such as crocheting and cross stitch, knitting and needlepoint and loves to cook. While working a temporary day job, she continues to write her books and stories and reviews, which she posts in various places on the internet. Her family thinks she is a bit off, but she doesn't mind. Marching to the beat of one's own drummer is a good thing, after all.  Her published works can be found at Dreamspinner Press, Amber Quill Press, MuseitUp Publishing, Torquere Press, and eXtasy Books, and coming soon to Wayward Ink Publishing and Prizm Publishing. She has also begun to self-publish and is an editor at MuseitUp.  

You can find her on her blog at, and you can contact her at

My links:
Twitter @Shelley_runyon

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Weds Brief

Welcome to Weds Brief.    I saw a photo prompt that I decided to use this week.  With spring upon us this one spoke to me.   I love going to the farmer's markets, and of course so do Tom and Ben.

I'm using one of the photo prompts

Farmer's Market Blues

“Farmer’s market?  In April?”   Tom couldn’t believe when Ben suggested they go to a farmer’s market.  “You do realize that April Fool’s day was yesterday, right?”

“Ha, ha.  Yes I know that, Tom.  I’m not trying to pull the wool over your eyes.   There is a farmer’s market in Reading that is opening up this month, instead of the usual May openings that most of them have.”

“Oh, well, it’s raining out.  Who’s going to stand in the rain looking for veggies and fruits?”

“It’s inside an old factory.  So can you come up with another excuse we can’t go?”  Ben stood in front of Tom, who was sitting on the living room couch, watching TV.

“Time away from TV and…” Tom grabbed his hand and pulled Ben onto his lap  “And this.”  He kissed him.

“Um, uh, yeah.”  Ben got off his lap and pulled Tom to his feet and turned off the TV in one fell swoop.  “Come on, Romeo, let’s get out of the house for a while and then we’ll come back for some lovin’ time.”   

They got their coats on, and Tom followed his husband to Ben’s , then they drove off to Reading.  They loved living in the quiet, small town just outside Lancaster proper, so coming to a bigger city like Reading was a nice change of pace. 

“There’s a place to park right there.”  They were lucky they found a spot close to the building.  They both brought umbrellas. 

“Look at the wonderful cucumbers and potatoes.” Ben got excited, like a kid in a candy store; he picked the veggies up and put them into a bag that he’d pulled off a nearby hook.   “I have a great idea for a vegetable casserole.” 

“Mm, I love your casserole.”   Tom was a good cook. Jjust ask his fellow firefighters—they all looked forward to when it was his turn to cook.  But he didn’t hold a candle to Ben’s home cooking.

“Aw, look at the fags shopping, isn’t that cute?”   A burly man with tattoos, the kind that looked like a biker type dude, was standing in front of them making cracks.

“I think you better keep your mouth shut,” Tom muttered as he and Ben walked by him.

“What did you just say to me, fag?”  The homophobe grabbed Tom by the arm and whipped him around.  

“Tom, let’s just go, I don’t want any trouble.”  Ben tried to diffuse the situation.

“Yeah, you better listen to the little woman.  Go on home.”  The guy was about to say something else, until he met Tom’s fist.

“You shut the fuck up, you asshole!”  Tom clocked the guy.  He fell on his behind.

“Let’s get out of here.”  Ben was scared there was going to be a riot.

“Hold on, guys.”  A blond-haired man, who’d been standing at the booth next to where the altercation took place, approached them.  “I’m Frank Hill, I’m an off-duty officer.  I saw the whole thing.”  He showed them his badge.  

“Yeah, officer, arrest them.I think he broke my nose,”  the biker yelled.

“Officer we were just minding our business and he started the trouble.”

They heard a siren, and two uniformed officers came over.  By this time, a crowd had formed.   

“Okay, what happened.”  The two officers recognized Frank, and there was a discussion. 

“Okay, you’re under arrest.” 

Tom was about to put his hands out, but instead of arresting him the officers arrested the biker man. 

“What?  What the hell are you arresting me for?  He started it.”

“You were the one who was looking for trouble,”  Frank told the biker man.   “You’re being arrested for a hate crime.” 

“Officer, I don’t want to press charges,”  Tom said

“What?”  Frank said.

“I don’t want any more trouble.”  Tom started to walk away with Ben.

“Hey, how come you’re letting me go?’ the biker man asked.

“Because I don’t want to create more problems for myself and my husband.  I just hope you’ll learn that hate is a waste of time.  We should accept each other for what we are.  We’re all different, that’swhat makes the world go around.”

“I’m sorry for what I said,”  the guy said.

“You have a name?” Ben asked him.

“I’m Pete Wilson.  I own the bike store on Seventh Street.”

A few hours later, they returned home, and Ben had put together his vegetable casserole.   They hadn’t spoken much about the incident they had earlier in the day.

“I love you, Tom,”  Ben blurted out as they sat on the couch in the living room.  Ben had set a timer so his casserole wouldn’t burn. 

“I love you too, Ben, I know I shouldn’t have hit that guy.  I should have just left it alone, but when he insulted you the way he did, I couldn’t help myself.”

“I know, I would have done the same thing if he said anything about you, I wish the haters would stop hating.  We should love one another, not hate.”

“Well, things are getting better. One day maybe everyone will realize it’s more important about what’s on the inside and not what’s on the outside that counts.”

“I hope everyone will get the message.”   They sat on the couch, snuggling until the timer went off, and then they sat at the kitchen counter eating the veggie casserole Ben had made.


my fellow authors