Today’s guest is Nicole Forcine and a couple of her characters.
B: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor or role model?
N: A mentor, wow. I’d be tickled pink to have any of my favorite writers as a mentor. So far, it’s a tie between Kaje Harper and Amy Lane. Both of these ladies put out consistently awesome work and they both really helped me out in getting this work of mine off the ground in different ways.
B: Do you see writing as a career?
N: I’d sure like to do this for a living. Because I work full-time, getting time to write is difficult, but as far as I’m concerned, it’s my second job.
B: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
N: I can’t recall a time when I wasn’t writing or telling stories. Since I’ve been able to write and could get my hands on pen and paper, I’ve been writing. I still have faded pages of stories I wrote when I was 10 (and they were awful!).
Now to hear from a few of Nicole’s characters.
Interview with Jonathan and Dean:
Jonathan: Why are we doing this? We could be doing something a lot more fun together than talking, big guy.
Dean: Later. This is important.
J: God, you’re the only person on this planet who can get away with calling me “Jon”, you know that?
D: That’s a good jump off question, actually. What’s with you and names? You have one that only I can call you, only your mom can call you by the first name, and everyone else it’s “Jonathan” or you bite their head off.
J: Not exactly true. Mama can call me anything she wants, because she gave me the name, right? But “Esteban” is special, she’s never called me by my middle name and it don’t sound right when anyone else uses my first name, so they don’t get to. As for you, well, whenever I hear you say “Jon”, it gets me hot every time. Reminds me of the first time you said it, when I was on my knees and…
D: Jonathan, not now. We’re in public.
J: Yeah, I’m so sure these people are really objecting. You can tell by the sound of the crickets. Anyway, my turn. Mr. Dean Winton, what was the first thing you thought when you saw me?
D: That you were the most beautiful thing on the planet. And that I hoped I didn’t drop tzatziki sauce on my shirt because you were coming my way.
J: I, um, damnit, Dean. I gave you a perfect opening to tease me about my ego, and you had to turn it around and make it sweet. Bastard.
D: I love you too.
J: And now the audience might puke. Ask the next question.
D: Why bellydancing?
J: It’s a hot guy magnet?
J: Okay, okay, I’ll be serious. Why bellydancing? Because it looks awesome and it’s fun and I guess I’ve gotten so good at it that it’s in my soul, right? I can’t even listen to music without thinking up ways to shimmy to the beat. I look at clothes and wonder how I can cut them up and make them into costumes that flow. It’s been my obsession for a damned long time. My turn!
D: I don’t like the look in your eyes at all.
J: Relax, it’s a softball. Before me, you spent a lot of time alone. What’d you do for fun?
D: My right hand. Occasionally my left.
D: Didn’t think I had that in me, did you? Now close your jaw before you make me forget this interview entirely. To answer your question, I spent my time working out, going to restaurants, reading, therapy, avoiding crowds. Recovering. You came at just the right time, when I was ready to join the world again.
J: You came at just the right time, too, you know.
D: I’m waiting for the obvious pun.
J: No pun, baby. I think the timing was just right for us.
D: You got that right. Okay, last questions, because I really don’t think I can keep sitting here without touching you.
J: Hey, I suggested I sit in your lap while we did this interview, but you said I’d be “too distracting”.
D: What’s your biggest regret?
J: I don’t think I can talk about that yet. Not my biggest regret. It still hurts.
D: I’m so sorry.
J: No, you don’t have a god damned thing to be sorry about, baby. That was all my fuck up. Shit, what’s the last question?
D: It’s yours.
J: Right, my question. What do you hope folks get out of our story?
D: Wow, that’s meta. I hope they get that no matter how much of a screw up or a failure you may think you are, there’s no getting away from love.
J: That sounds more like what I should be getting out of this. So are we done?
D: Yep, so get over here. My lap’s a little lonely.
J: About time, damnit.
Nicole Forcine was born a strange child and former Georgia peach. When she was younger, she was never far from a composition book, a pen in hand, and way too many people in her head (she’s even been known to talk back to them). When two or more of them talk loud enough to overshadow the rest, a story is born. After years of writing and storing her tales in those books, she had a revelation: man, there are a lot of dudes kissing in these stories.
Her stories include themes of creating families of choice, how love can come in all forms and supersede all boundaries, and the joys and sorrows of earning a happily-ever-after.
Currently, she resides in Minneapolis with one of the most laid-back men in history and his even more laid-back cat. When she’s not writing (ha!), she’s saving the world/galaxy/humanity as we know it in the world of video games and general geekiness and opening other people’s mail for a living.
Jonathan Mendoza used to live an even crazier life, partying with his tight-knit traveling performance troupe whenever he wasn’t on stage belly dancing. When his sick mother begged him to change his lifestyle, he agreed to try to live sober, but that change is hard. Neither is it easy to stop staring at Dean Winters after he nearly knocks the man over before a performance.
A former recluse, prone to panic attacks after surviving a traumatic accident, Dean isn’t Jonathan’s usual type. Still, Jonathan is irresistibly attracted to him, and decides to cure the itch with a one-night stand. But that night, he’s shaken by Dean’s kindness and consideration—something he’s not used to in a lover or a friend. His best friend, Rachel, who co-owns the troupe with Jonathan, sees Dean as a threat to their friendship and to the troupe—the dream they’ve worked together to build. She reveals a cruel and possessive streak that could do much greater damage on both fronts, and Jonathan realizes he will have to choose between the nomadic life he’s lived and the man who is stealing his heart.
He kept looking out the curtains. “I’m all yours. Are you sure you don’t want a little peek? We’ve got time enough for you to show me what he looks like.”
I gave in, if only to appease Patch and get him back on track. That was what I told myself, anyway. I moved behind him and peered over his head, expecting Dean to have followed the crowd to grab a snack and/or a piss, and I was wrong. He was still in his seat, relaxed, gorgeous. A petite little blonde with a coin scarf tied around her waist sat next to him, chattering away at him merrily. “The redhead over there.”
“Bingo, I knew it!” Patch cried out and then whistled. “He’s hot as hell. Damn, didn’t know glasses turned you on, papi.”
I gave in to the smacking urge, savoring the yelp it got, not bothering to admonish him on the nickname again. “Go soak your hair already, unless you want to torch it.”
“Ten minutes, people!” Rachel called out as she walked over to us, fire extinguisher in hand.
We replied with the customary “Thank you, ten!” without even thinking about it, along with the stagehands and performers also zipping about backstage.
“Patch, why are you still dry?”
“Don’t worry, lady. I’ve already been nagged. I wanted to see the hottie Jonathan bagged.” He chuckled, with a lopsided grin. “Check me out. I should go into poetry.”
“You’re a regular fucking Neruda,” Rachel groaned, also looking through the curtains.