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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have SE Harmon here today talking about writing, characters, and her latest novel, The Blueprint. Welcome, SE!
~ Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with SE Harmon ~
Has your choice of childhood or teenage reading genres carried into your own choices for writing?
I was banned from reading romances as a kid…my mother called them “love books” and told me I was too young to read such things. That only led to me coming up with more and more creative ways to sneak and read them. At one point, I was actually reading in the shower (with my back turned to the spray). I think this career choice was pretty much inevitable.
How do you feel about the ebook format and where do you see it going?
I was a hold-out on ebooks. I love a good paperback book in my hands–the look of them, the feel of them, even smell them…sublime. One of my favorite days of the publishing process is when my author copies arrive in the mail and I can hold the book in my hands. Rub it on my face a little. Dance with…okay, nevermind, this is getting a little weird.
At one point, I ran out of space for my paperbacks and actually rented a storage unit for them. An actual storage unit. I defended myself to friends and family and claimed it was for other things, but we all knew the truth. I lost the majority of my book collection when spiders took over my storage unit…but that’s another story, one that involves me running away from the unit with bug spray—a can of Raid that might as well have been air freshener for all the good it did.
Now that I’ve thoroughly established my long-standing love affair with books, I must admit I truly appreciate the convenience of ebooks. My ereader is with me at all times and ebooks are definitely here to stay.
How much of yourself goes into a character?
Little bits here and there, but mainly a sense of humor–I wouldn’t be able to relate to the character otherwise. I don’t know how to relate to pod people who can answer questions without a nice, piping hot side of sarcasm.
Do you like HFN or HEA? And why?
HEA, always. Real life is full of HFNs. I want the fairy tale in my fiction. If you’ve read The Blueprint, you may notice that it is a bit of a HFN, but don’t fear. Kelly and Blue get their HEA in the sequel, Darker Blue.
Kelly Cannon is generally satisfied with his life—he has a great job that he loves, friends, and a wonderful family. But his love life has reached a new level of pitiful. Why? Well, his heart decided to break all the rules. Don’t fall in love with a straight guy. And definitely don’t fall in love with your best friend.
NFL standout Britton “Blue” Montgomery has pressure coming at him from all sides. From his father, who’s only interested in Blue’s football career. From his coaches, who just want him to play without getting injured again. The fans. His agent. His mother, who popped back up on the radar after leaving his family years ago. Now his relationship with Kelly is on shaky ground, and that frightens Blue more than anything.
When Kelly admits he’s in love with Blue, bonds are tested, and Blue has to decide what’s really important. He doesn’t want to lose the number one person in his life, but the cost to keep Kelly close might be more than he’s willing to pay.
It’s a good thing his nickname is the Blueprint—it’s time to draft a new set of plans.
Release Date: March 13 2018
Edition/Formats Available: ebook & Print
My phone rang for the third time, and I swore and dug in my pocket. “Yeah?”
“Wow.” Blue’s deep voice sounded vaguely impressed. “You only made me call three times.”
“I figured answering was the polite thing to do.”
“And since when do you do the polite thing?” His chuckle was warm and soft. “I figured I’d call and congratulate you. It didn’t seem like the type of thing to leave on voicemail.”
Congratulate me. It bothered me that he wasn’t bothered that I was possibly getting engaged to someone else. I felt a little… deflated.
I cleared my throat. It was hard to hear him clearly over the din in the background—a hip-hop beat, loud voices, and the occasional raucous laughter. “Where are you, anyway? I thought you had a game.”
“I did. One of the players wanted to show off his new boat, and it turned into a thing. I thought I’d swing by after—”
“There is no after. We’re pretty much wrapping things up over here.” The fact that his party sounded a thousand times more fun than mine didn’t improve my mood. “Sounds like you guys are having a good time. You must’ve won.”
“Of course. I can’t think of a better way to kick off a season than winning our last preseason game.” At my lack of response, he went on. “So where’s Robert?”
Probably at a witch doctor’s house asking him to construct a skinny, black-haired, gray-eyed voodoo doll named Kelly.
“Gone,” I said shortly. “I told him no. Well, to be perfectly accurate, I said yes, and then I said no.”
“Fuck, Kel.” Even over the noise in the background, I could hear the exasperation. “I thought you liked Robert.”
“I did. Just not enough to marry him.”
“Wow.” He seemed nonplussed for a moment. “I don’t know what to say to that.”
“It is what it is.”
Somewhere in the background, a feminine voice murmured something. She sounded close. Like almost in his ear. Something… flirty? Blue murmured something back, and then she giggled. Giggled. I tightened my hand on the phone. I couldn’t lie—I wanted to hurt him right then, even though I had absolutely no right to be angry, no right to expect his exclusive attention.
This was why I’d been pulling away from Blue. Because he had no idea how hard it was to be just friends. But the more I pulled away, the harder Blue pushed for things to remain just the way they were.
“I have to go,” I said shortly.
“Maybe I could drop by sometime this week. I know things have been kind of crazy lately, but we could hang out. Catch a movie? I know I could stand to watch something other than game film.” The smile in his voice invited me to laugh along, but I wasn’t in the mood.
“I’m going to be pretty busy this week.”
I heard the question in his voice. “The entire week?”
“Yes. I have a job, you know.” Defensiveness made my voice sharp, and I couldn’t seem to stop myself. “I can’t just drop everything every time you decide to stop by.”
“I’m not asking you to. If you’re busy, you’re busy.” He paused. “Are you sure you’re okay? You sound weird.”
“I’m fine. Call me later, okay?”
“Sure. As long as you’re really all right.”
Why wouldn’t I be? Did I sound pissed? Annoyed? Irritated that I couldn’t have his undivided attention for two minutes? I was feeling pretty raw. Alone. Jealous that he was somewhere with some woman having a perfectly good time. I was ready to curse out whoever said love should be multiplied, not divided. I wanted Blue’s love all to myself, and that was… well, ridiculous. I had to hang up before I said some shit I probably shouldn’t say.
“Of course I’ll help you with that,” I said loudly, pretending to talk to someone else. “Blue, I’ve got to go.” I jabbed the end button and sent the phone to sleep. He called right back, and I put the ringer on silent.
I honestly didn’t know what else there was to say.
About the Author
S.E. Harmon has had a lifelong love affair with writing. It’s been both wonderful and rocky (they’ve divorced several times), but they always manage to come back together. She’s a native Floridian with a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters in Fine Arts, and now splits her days between voraciously reading romance novels and squirreling away someplace to write them. Her current beta reader is a nosy American Eskimo who begrudgingly accepts payment in the form of dog biscuits.