A road trip to Nashville with a young Irish immigrant has Garth Clayton questioning everything he’s ever believed about himself. Will Garth embrace his true self or lose the only man he’s loved?
Garth Clayton is a guy who doesn’t have any complaints about his life. He’s a successful musician and songwriter. He lives very well in a New York bachelor pad with a steady girlfriend, which isn’t too shabby for an introverted kid from the Bible belt. When he offers a ride to an Irish immigrant, he never expects his life to turn upside down.
Connor Adams is the opposite of Garth. He’s wild, foolish, and not about to apologize for who he is. He likes to live on the edge. When he is nearly arrested for a fight in a gay bar, Garth is shocked to learn of Connor’s sexual preference. Unable to hide the truth any longer, Garth confesses the deep secret he’s kept buried—he’s attracted to men.
Garth and Connor start a secret love affair, but when Connor asks Garth to be truthful about their relationship with his parents, he can’t bring himself to do it. Unwilling to be his “dirty little secret” any longer, Connor ends things. Will Garth stop hiding his true self, or will he lose the man he loves?
Read An Excerpt
Cursing, Garth pulled on his jeans and a sweater, and hurried down to the lobby. The officer waiting for him was a young chubby faced man, not much older than Connor.
“Mr Clayton, this young man has been thrown out of a bar for using obscene language and—crazy behaviour. I found him out on the street cursing and yelling. Making a noise an’ being a pain. I don’t want to go through all the paperwork of booking him.”
Garth’s eyes nearly popped out of his head. He couldn’t believe that even Connor could get into this sort of trouble so quickly. His heart beat faster as he looked at the young police officer.
“If you can promise that you and he will be out of the town by 8 a.m. then I’ll forget what happened. It wasn’t much and we’re a small police department here.”
The cop lowered his voice and leaned closer to Garth. “Look, Mr Clayton, it was a gay bar. My boss doesn’t like faggots, but there are a couple of bars where they go and mostly they don’t do any harm to anyone. Hardly ever any trouble there. I don’t want any bother so, you just get him out of town.”
“Where is he?” Garth grumbled.
He could only thank his lucky stars that this nice young guy had been the one to find Connor. Some other policemen might have investigated further.
“He’s out in my car, sir. He told me that he was traveling with you and that you write songs that are on the T.V. I’d heard your name, and my wife likes you, so I thought I’d let this one go. But you have to promise you’ll get out of town.”
“Officer, I’d go right now if it weren’t so damn late. That boy is—” he trailed off. It might not be a good idea to criticize Connor.
Please tell us a little bit about your current projects?
I am just about to have my first gay romance published. I have other things I’m working on, including a love story set in modern America, between a man and a woman.
When was the moment that you knew you had to be a writer?
I think I was in my teens but I wanted to be a serious journalist!
Who gave you the one piece of writing advice that sticks with you to this day?
To say the truth, I’m not sure I ever take advice! I think you’ve got to write the way that comes naturally to you. It’s not good trying to please other people.
Describe the “perfect” hero. What about the “perfect” hero for you?
A man who is intense but intelligent. Someone I feel I could talk to about books and history, and also about more active pastimes. Not a good looking guy because they are too vain! Attractive but not exceptional! Slim rather than fat!
What are some of your favorite pastimes? Do you have any hobbies or collections?
I love the theatre and I used to do a bit of acting. I also love to read and listen to music. I have a massive collection of books and I enjoy looking after them, arranging them…I also have a collection of cuddly toys.
What has been your biggest adventure to date?
Writing this story. I just don’t know how it will turn out.
If your fairy godmother waved her wand and whisked you away to the location of your choice, which place would you choose, and why?
I’d love to see Texas. There’s the bigness of everything, and the big cities, but also the countryside. And I’d love to see if the men really do wear cowboy hats and boots going to the office.
When it comes to food, are you the adventurous type who will try anything once, or do you prefer to stick to tried and true foods and recipes?
I am terribly conservative in relation to food. I will eat the same stuff for like 6 months.
What is the one modern convenience that you cannot do without? Central heating! I don’t think I could live with fires and draughty rooms, though I grew up in a farmhouse like that. I need to be comfy!
What is this romance writer’s idea of the “ideal romantic evening”?
I love to go to concerts or movies, especially about America with someone who also enjoys them. And then maybe a meal or a few drinks, and a nice ending to the evening!
How do you describe yourself? How would your family and friends describe you?
I think I’m a very shy person, but with strong opinions that I only talk about obliquely. I’m not sure how people would describe me, I think as an eccentric.
What is your favorite comfort food? Milk and biscuits.
What is your favorite season? What do you love about it?
I love spring, when it’s warm but not hot, and it’s not raining too much. I’m not that fond of cold and winter. I love to see spring flowers like crocuses and primroses coming up and the feeling that the earth is renewing itself.
What project are you working on next?
Any place we can find you in person or on the net this month or next?
Just on My FaceBook Page.
I come from Ireland, but I have lived in many different places. I’ve spent many years in Ireland, and shorter times living in Europe. For a long time now, I have lived in London, with my partner, but I don’t see it as my permanent home. However, I enjoy the artistic side of London life. I love to walk around and see buildings that have been here for centuries and to look around historical monuments, particularly the Royal Palaces. I enjoy the theater though it does not seem to me as good as it used to be! I used to go very often, now it’s more like an occasional treat. But I really love music, particularly country, folk, “light” opera, some Rock, and the music of the great musicals; I take advantage of being in London to attend concerts.
My hobbies are sedate ones. I like to knit and used to make a lot of woollies when I lived in cold climates. I also try my hand at things like flower arranging, jewellery making and painting. I used to swim and ride horses, and to play a little tennis, but I don’t get time for that nowadays. I love music and enjoy very much listening to music and going to concerts and musicals, and I take singing lessons. Naturally I love to read and always have a couple of books or my Kindle with me. I enjoy walking and an occasional game of golf and I love board games. I also enjoy travelling, whether by train, boat or air. I particularly love America, and hope to visit there again very soon.
My initial degree was in history. I loved English but I wanted to do something more “relevant” and I dabbled in politics. When I left college, I worked in many different fields, changing jobs quite often. Some of my jobs were to do with books; I was a library officer and worked in the office of a bookshop. I’ve also worked in the legal field, in education, in social work support, and in businesses. At present, I work in a public service and health field. I’ve worked in social work, helping with volunteer organizations. I used to work with a hostel for homeless people and with visiting the elderly and people in need.
My great hobby is reading, which naturally led me to want to write. I started writing when I was a kid, with absolutely no success. I wrote very serious short stories, usually with a feminist slant! I tried serious historical fiction. Then I gave it up for some years as I needed to earn a living and didn’t have the time. I enjoy my work, but I love to write. It is a very important creative outlet for me, as my job, while it’s useful in promoting public health and very worthwhile, helping the public, doesn’t have any creative side.
I have also done light journalistic work, on women’s issues, but about 10 years ago I began to explore creative writing, and to try to write fiction again. I took a few classes, and then I started to write light historical fiction, and joined writers’ groups. Now I’ve chosen to write modern fiction and my new story The Lovers of the Road is the result. I am looking forward to its being published and to finding, I hope, some new fans.