Short Stories

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The Billionaire’s Boxing Day Bargain

2017 Advent Calendar | Stocking Stuffers
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Milo is too nice to say no when the desperate call goes out for more staff to work Boxing Day at Eden Consumer Electronics. It’s just until they sell the door-crasher specials, but it means he can’t see his billionaire boyfriend Lance until later that day.

Lance spends December 25 jetting back from a business trip, eager to see Milo. He calls as soon as his flight lands Boxing Day morning, only to find out that seven hundred and thirty televisions are cock-blocking him.

What’s the point of being a billionaire if you can’t spend your way around obstacles? Milo doesn’t want Lance solving his problems with cash, but he’ll never find out because Lance’s efficient personal assistant, William, is on the case. Unfortunately, even billionaires are subject to the law of unintended consequences—and these aren’t the kind Lance can buy his way out of.

Will Lance and Milo have their Boxing Day date? Or have Lance’s pushy billionaire ways finally gone too far?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar "Stocking Stuffers."

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The Last Gift

2017 Advent Calendar | Stocking Stuffers
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College student Nick Reed works late shift at a convenience store and dreams of graduation, a job he can be proud of, and finding the man of his dreams.

But the man of his dreams is about to find him.

A change in his lab hours forces Nick to swap shifts with a coworker. But no one prepared Nick for Mr. 5:25—Aaron Hampton—a beefy blond who’s Nick’s perfect guy, but professionally and socially out of Nick's reach. Soon Aaron becomes the highlight of Nick's workday, and when the overly focused lawyer needs Nick's help with holiday gifts, Nick is eager to spend time with Aaron.

They become friends, share book recommendations, and are surprised to find themselves at the same charity run. But is that all? When Aaron learns Nick is heading back to his old shift, will he find the courage to ask for one last, very special gift?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar "Stocking Stuffers."

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Trading Tridents

2017 Advent Calendar | Stocking Stuffers
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DecemberCon 2017. John Perlan, aka YouTuber “SmileyNibor,” has come to the con for one reason and one reason only: to see his idol, actor Derek Kitow. And since Derek has announced he’ll be dressed as the original Aquaman, Perlan decides to come as the Aquaman reboot. It helps that he already has the beard and the bod to make a convincing Momoaman.

But when Derek Kitow makes his entrance, he recognizes Perlan from his tiny YouTube channel and wants him onstage! Has Kitow been following him online? Could SmileyNibor’s hero also be a fan? And what exactly does Kitow have in mind by inviting Perlan to meet him after the panel?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar "Stocking Stuffers."

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Wade Porter spent his whole life in the shadow of a lover who doled out snippets of love and time as he saw fit—and who insisted that love stay deep in the closet. But now that man is gone, and Wade finds the oceanside cottage where they spent so many weekends together in the Florida Keys cold and empty. He has come one last time, not even sure he wants to keep living. 

To his surprise, the house next door is occupied by another bereaved and lonely man. Kent Walker is an artist of romantic gay paintings who is open to the future—and determinedly interested in Wade. Kent wants to show Wade the beauty in being an openly gay man and the possibilities for a real relationship. 

Maybe Kent can help Wade let go of the past and discover a better way to live—and love.

2nd Edition
First Edition published in Two Tickets to Paradise by Dreamspinner Press, 2012.

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Anyplace Else

2016 Advent Calendar | Bah Humbug
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Grant Beaudoin should be thrilled to escape Minneapolis at Christmastime and grateful to lounge on a Hawaiian beach. Instead he is mired in self-pity and drowning in too much tequila. His twin is marrying the perfect man, while Grant is stuck in middle management with no love life in sight. A walk into the rain forest leads to a meeting with a doomed man who has a story about a holiday that predates Christmas. Grant comes to realize that difficult endings can lead to new beginnings—and perhaps a brighter future.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar "Bah Humbug."

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Driven to Distraction

2016 Advent Calendar | Bah Humbug
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Cowboys Wyatt and Brady are competing in a team-roping event in Missoula, Montana’s annual Christmas Eve rodeo. Christmas is Wyatt’s favorite time of year and nothing is going to dampen his holiday spirit, not even his surly, no-nonsense roping partner. They’ve only been riding together for a week, but Wyatt has already secretly fallen head over bootheels for Brady, though it’s painfully obvious Brady only has eyes for the rodeo’s grand prize purse.

When Brady is distracted during a crucial moment in the night’s first roping run and nearly disqualifies them, Wyatt is almost certain he is going to be another of Brady’s many rejected partners. Will Wyatt and Brady be able to sort out their differences and work together to win the grand prize? Maybe, if Wyatt can show Brady that Christmas really is a time for miracles.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar "Bah Humbug."

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Iced

2016 Advent Calendar | Bah Humbug
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Keith Walker, a mall bookstore employee, is struggling to get through another miserable holiday season while trying to preserve a crumbling long-term relationship. One of his few comforts is his morning coffee made by a good-looking, younger barista. Austin Novak felt an attraction when Keith started frequenting the coffee shop, but he doesn’t think the older man has any interest in him or his graphic novel collection.

A Christmas week snowstorm buries the city and locks Keith’s car into its parking spot. Keith decides to show Austin his gratitude for helping free the car from the ice with a dinner invitation. The meal becomes complicated when Austin meets Keith’s boyfriend, Shawn, and things go downhill from there when Shawn announces he’s heading to Cancún with his coworkers. Keith is caught between keeping his boyfriend happy and keeping his job. But Keith might not need a plane ticket to find the happiness that’s been missing from his life.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar "Bah Humbug."

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Popcorn Garlands

2016 Advent Calendar | Bah Humbug
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Carlos Mendez spends all year working hard at his Houston-based landscaping business, and he sends every spare penny he earns back to his family in Mexico. By the time the holidays roll around, he doesn’t have much patience for the unadulterated greed and consumerism paraded past him. But a chance meeting with his neighbor, Ned Williams, and Ned’s cancer-stricken daughter, might help to remind him of the real meaning of the season—something beyond the gaudy lights and extravagant displays—something he wants to be a part of.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar "Bah Humbug."

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Ranger Station Haven

Ranger Station Haven
2016 Advent Calendar | Bah Humbug
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Federal park ranger Carter Williams dislikes kids almost as much as he dislikes Christmas. He chose his career to escape human contact, not embrace it. And no matter how much his husband Owen tries to sway his opinion, Carter is a grump who would rather ignore the holiday. Owen’s efforts are put on hold, however, when they get a call about six missing foster kids lost in the park.

Christmas Eve takes a turn for the worse when Owen injures himself rescuing the children. Stranded in a snowstorm until dawn, Carter has to keep Owen awake and healthy while simultaneously watching six runaways. What he thinks is a nightmare come to life is actually a beautiful gift in disguise—the kids transform the ranger station into a Christmas wonderland. And before it’s all said and done, they might transform Carter’s heart as well—if he can keep his bah humbug attitude in check.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar "Bah Humbug."

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Santa for Hire

2016 Advent Calendar | Bah Humbug
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Dumped by his ex on Christmas Eve two years ago, Oxford Street department store manager Richard Barratt now hates the holidays. Things go from bad to worse when the store's usual Santa is too ill to reprise his role and the firm sends cocky but handsome Blaine Ryder to take his place. The attraction between the two is clear, but Blaine is an incorrigible player who reminds Richard of his ex. His idea of a relationship is a quick roll in the hay, and his advances have Richard running for the hills. It might take some special intervention for both of them to realize they can change enough to have a chance at a holiday romance.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar "Bah Humbug."

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Alpaca Lies

2016 Daily Dose | A Walk on the Wildside
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Alpaca shifter Alfie dreams of a life beyond the petting zoo at stately Mattock Hall. He can’t explore his crush on Simon Mattock, heir to the estate and caretaker to the animals, for two reasons. One, he’s never shifted into human form, and two, Simon is saddled with a boyfriend who’s exploiting him for his wealth. But when a fire threatens both the zoo and Simon, Alfie knows the time has come to put his fears aside, make his first shift, and save them. He just hopes Simon will like what he sees.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Daily Dose package "A Walk on the Wild Side."

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Quiet as a Mouse

2016 Daily Dose | A Walk on the Wildside
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Upon moving to a new town, shy shifter Paul is instantly smitten with local choirmaster Cale. Wanting to spend as much time with Cale as possible, he becomes the proverbial church mouse so he can enjoy Cale’s music without revealing his feelings. But when Cale sees him and traps are set, Paul faces a difficult choice. What does he want out of life, and does he have the courage to go after it? Will he be a man… or a mouse?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Daily Dose package "A Walk on the Wild Side."

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Shifter

2016 Daily Dose | A Walk on the Wildside
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When Gray Fox sets out by canoe to visit Elk Horn, his childhood friend and secret crush, mysterious forces strand him on a terrifying hunk of ebony rock known as Black Island. During the dark, cold night, a strangely androgynous being seduces the young virgin. In the midst of his passion, the creature shifts into a comely youth, shocking the naïve young man. He can hardly wait to tell Elk Horn about the experience. But does he dare?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Daily Dose package "A Walk on the Wild Side."

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After a meet-cute in a bathroom and a whirlwind courtship, Ryan is ready to introduce Scotty to his parents. But a misunderstanding and some stubborn cuff buttons tangle Ryan up in an oxford shirt at a really inopportune time. Can Scotty take this opportunity to teach Ryan one or two more lessons about falling in love?

2nd Edition
Previously published in the Curious: A Woman's Introduction to Gay Romance anthology by Dreamspinner Press, 2010.

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Stuck away from home on business, all Ryan can do is talk with his lover, Scott, on the phone. But the conservative Ryan finds no comfort in phone sex—he's far too embarrassed. Fortunately, his playful lover has not only planned ahead, but he can think on his back as well. It turns out that the heart really is where good sex starts!

2nd Edition
First Edition published by Dreamspinner Press, 2010.

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Nick DiGiaccomo waits tables at Fortissimo, an exclusive restaurant in Oilton, Alberta. He loathes drama, particularly the kind that makes its appearance on Valentine’s Day.

This Valentine’s Day is especially bitter. Eight months ago Nick’s heart was broken when his lover walked away without a word over a misunderstanding. Too proud to call, Nick’s heard nothing from him since. But on this, the most romantic day of the year, he keeps his feelings well-hidden and his professional smile firmly in place.

That is, until he sees his ex-lover, Mark Mishimoto, at a table for two in his section—and his Valentine’s Day goes from bad to downright horrible.

To make matters worse, a winter storm descends, hours earlier than forecast. When the restaurant closes, Nick finds himself stuck downtown in the middle of a blizzard with no way to get home and nowhere to go. Mark lives conveniently close by, and he’s offering up his couch. Nick could use a place to lay his head—but is it worth risking his heart?

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Grateful

2015 Advent Calendar | Sleigh Ride
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Nate Roth’s latest dumb stunt has left him with a broken arm, black eye, and stitched chin—and extra trepidation about visiting his family for Hanukkah. He fears his relatives will put him through another round of criticism for his foolish choices and his nonexistent love life. Several mishaps during his short journey to his parents’ house don’t bode well. But along the way he meets impossibly gorgeous Gio DiPietro—and maybe it’s time for Nate’s risk-taking impulses to turn out well for a change.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Advent Calendar package "Sleigh Ride".

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Kismet

2015 Advent Calendar | Sleigh Ride
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Fate has a way of bringing people together, like it did when Tucker Wright and Callum Richards met unexpectedly in an airport coffee shop and formed a deep connection in the short time they had to spend together. But fate can also be cruel. When Tucker loses Cal’s phone number in his hurry to catch his plane, he has no way of reaching Cal. Then a dead car battery and a snowy night force their paths to cross again, will Cal believe Tucker and ring in the New Year with a little help from kismet?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Advent Calendar package "Sleigh Ride".

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