by Gigi Kern
Book 1 in Finding Home Series
At 23, Aaron has aged out of the foster-care system and is now a struggling college student. Between his severe Learning Disabilities, ADHD and past trauma, every day is a struggle.
Three years ago, Aaron’s world got a whole lot brighter thanks to his new best friend, Ryan Foster and his family. The Fosters have taken him into the fold. That is, everyone except for Ryan’s Uncle TJ.
When Aaron and TJ meet, sparks fly.
TJ, 31, can’t stand his nephew’s flamboyant, in your face, blue-haired, rainbow loving, best friend. He knows he shouldn’t be so judgmental but after spending five years in Iraq and Afghanistan, his patience is buried under a mountain of guilt and loss.
TJ’s animosity toward Aaron always stresses Aaron out going home to the Foster’s for the holidays but they are the only family he has. He just needs to put up with TJ. He can do that, right?
When something happens that neither one wants to acknowledge, it may just be the catalyst needed for the sparks to explode.
What happens when TJ lets himself see the real Aaron? And, can Aaron let TJ past his defenses, when he’s barely holding on.
Finding Love, the 2nd Book in the Finding Home series will be available in 2016.
Finding Home Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/FindingHomeSeriesByGigiKern/?pnref=story
Guest Post- My Publishing Journey
I’ve been trying to write a novel for years now. I went overseas to Afghanistan in 2005 for a couple of months, and when I came back I tried to write a novel. But life got in the way. See I have computer files of novels that are waiting for me to finish. I plan to eventually go back and write at least four of them.
I think there is a theme somewhere among my writing. See I spent 22 months in Iraq, and well I had way too much time on my hands and I couldn’t really go anywhere. So, I finally wrote and finished my first novel. I thought, yes! Everyone will read it and love it just like me. So my awesome friend typed the finished novel written in long hand in 10 different notebooks. I edited and re-edited, and thought, yes I’m ready. I went to a writer conference, pitched my novel, got some interest, sent it and nothing. I spent a year querying 106 literary agents and 10 publishers. That included 3 rounds of revision and I learned a great lesson. At the end of the day, I have to love my own book and some things I just won’t change. See, during one of the revisions to make my first book more what they wanted, I stripped “me” out of it. I hated that draft. I won’t ever do that again. I had interest, but it was always “I didn’t fall in love with your characters”, or “I like your concept but not sure about your writing”. That was another lesson learned, I have a unique writing voice and style. And I’m okay with not everyone liking it. Many will hate it. But if I am content with my story, I’ve pleased the reader that matters the most, me.
See, I’m an avid reader. I read about 10 books a week. Sometimes more, sometimes less. And, I’m a child of the 80s and 90s. I noticed a certain trend at the end of the 90s and 2000s where the books out there were in a word lacking. So, now when I write, I write with a specific reader in mind, me. I write books that I want to read. I break rules left and right. See, I love Robert Ludlum, Joan D. Vinge, David Hagberg, Mary Jo Putney, Patricia Potter, Lindsey Mckenna and more who have shaped not only what I read but now how I write.
Anyway, I really did want to be traditionally published. It sadly was not in the cards. And now almost a year and a half later, I’m okay with that. Several of my friends thought I should self-publish my novel. I resisted but after I received the 106th rejection letter and another seven from publishers that say thanks but no thanks. Or the silence of rejection, where no word is a no. I said, okay then.
I’m a researcher by nature and I researched what I needed to do to publish my novel. It probably took another three months of finding the right cover, formatting, tearing my hair out. And cause I’m a glutton for punishment, I needed to get everything ready prior to Comic Con (San Diego). Yes I am a nerd! I published on amazon in Kindle and then in Print. And nothing. Yes, I sold some copies but now, a year and a half later, my first novel is lost in the void where books go to die a slow death.
So, last year I discovered m/m romance. I read m/m romance (though I’m still confused, the difference between gay romance vs m/m romance?). Coming up with ideas has never been an issue for me. I have over 100 ideas in several different genres waiting to be written. So, a new idea for a four book series came to me.
Finding Aaron is actually my second m/m romance book idea I have. I will go back soon and write the first m/m romance novel, that one is a lot darker than my current series. Anyway, I have never written a novel in five months in sequential order and half long hand/half computer in my life. But, the shocking part was when I sent it to my one friend Lee (who I admit now wrote the one sex scene for me – he is a gay man and I am not), actually liked it and wanted to read more. Several people liked it actually. Not that people didn’t like my first novel, but this felt different. I finished the novel in record time and when I finally read it from beginning to end, I actually forgot I wrote it.
Lightning in a bottle, that has been my experience with Finding Aaron. I found a proofreader who I could afford (working for Uncle Sam, there isn’t a lot of extra funds floating around). I contacted a couple of book cover designers, and I found the right one. I love the cover for Finding Aaron. One of my co-workers helped me with formatting one of the ebooks. For the second book in the Finding Home series, Finding Love, I am so hiring someone to format the book in ebook and print formats. I do not have a computer programing mind. I chose a date to release Finding Aaron and though it went live a little sooner than expected, there it was.
And the strange thing, people are not only reading it, but they seem to love it. It is a surreal experience. There really is no rhyme or reason as to why this book found an audience and my first one didn’t. But, I will take it. Not everyone loves it, but I’m fine with that. Cause the people who do love it, are keeping me going. Of course, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t say that even though not a lot of people have read my first novel, doesn’t mean I’m not going to finish writing and publishing the other books in that series. I still want to read those books, so I need to write them. And, if after a month, Finding Aaron’s sales dry up, don’t be concerned. I love that series too, so I will finish writing those books also.
Self-publishing has given me the opportunity to tell my story the way I needed to tell it. Succeed or fail, it is on me. I chose the book cover, the title, the series title, wrote the novel the way I needed to and I will be fine with the outcome either way.
TJ was putting the last Christmas decoration in its place when he received Ryan’s mysterious text – Wait for us outside. BE NICE!
“What the hell does that even mean?” TJ thought as he stepped outside and sat down on the front porch steps.
A minute later Rick’s SUV pulled into the driveway. Still wondering about Ryan’s cryptic text, he patiently waited for everyone to exit the vehicle.
As Rick and Ryan exited the SUV they both gave a look of “Be nice or else.” Which was confusing as all shit considering where he and Aaron’s “relationship” was heading.
Aaron opened the passenger side backseat door and a second later TJ forgot how to breathe or think. He had always thought Aaron was cute in an artistic twink sort of way. He was just Aaron.
But the young man who stepped out of Rick’s vehicle was FUCKING HOT! His blue-tipped bangs were just long enough to make his green eyes pop. And the subtle makeup… Aaron was drop-dead gorgeous and strikingly beautiful at the same time.
Stuck in a trance, TJ could only stare as Aaron approached.
“Kid cleans up well, doesn’t he?” Rick said as he passed a still stunned TJ, frozen in place sitting on the stoop steps.
Chuckling with a smirk, Ryan said, passing TJ, “Who knew the mighty Tyler Jacob could be struck speechless by a haircut?” Ryan and Rick laughed as Miranda joined them as they entered the house.
In his shy manner, playing with his hair, Aaron approached TJ. He paused in front and with a nervousness asked, “Is it too much?”
Silence was his only answer until TJ noticed Aaron’s face start to close up and he realized he was quiet too long.
“What?” TJ said as he got up. He leaned in, touching Aaron’s bangs, moving the blue/black hair from his eyes. “I LOVE IT!”
A small smile appeared on Aaron’s face.
“Really,” TJ said as he kissed Aaron on the lips.
Universal Amazon Link: http://mybook.to/Finding-Aaron
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About the Author
Gigi Kern is currently writing the second book, Finding Love in the Finding Home series, her first gay contemporary romance series. A huge fan, she along with thousands wait with baited breath for the next new release from her favourite gay romance authors.
Gigi first discovered her passion for reading out of desperation. During her month long hiatus for her seventh grade summer break, spending quality time with the grandparents in sunny Florida in August, the hottest time of year, she became desperate. See, awesome grandparents had no cable. Travesty though it was, Gigi discovered the retirement community’s library and there it was in all its glory, Heaven by V.C. Andrews. And she’s been hooked ever since.
Though her day job is monotonous, she has been able to work in three continents, travel and see the world.
Her menagerie of wooden animals from her world travels have major competition from her two cats, Marco-Pollo and Squertie. And, cause what would a menagerie be without animals, her two 65+ pound dogs, Leo the Lug and Blink the destroyer of toys.
She is currently writing her life away on the shores of North Carolina.
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