Today we welcome author RJ Scott on her Undercover Lover blog tour. Enjoy RJ’s guest post and excerpt, then be sure to click on the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for the chance to win a $15 Amazon or ARe giftcard, and 2 further prizes of RJ Scott e-books (closes 8th August at 00:01 GMT London).
THINGS I LEARNED FROM WRITING STANDALONE STORIES
The worst thing about writing standalones is that if they are stories readers have enjoyed, then there will be requests for sequels. This is most obvious in The Christmas Throwaway, which is my most requested sequel. I know what it is like to fall in love with the characters in a book. I absolutely understand what it is like to want to know more about those characters.
But one thing I learned from a wish to write a standalone book is that sometimes stories can be contained within one book. Some, like Bodyguards Inc, started as one-off books, and are now part of a series. This happened with The Heart of Texas as well. Others, like Gallows Tree and Throwaway, are more a glimpse in time of a larger story and I don’t *feel* sequels.
So, writing standalone stories means tidying up loose ends, having a defined ending (in my case an HEA), and also building a world that has to be done in a few pages.
Which standalone book have you read where you are desperate for a sequel?
Kyle gets caught up in a case that is entirely unrelated to Bodyguards Inc. Not only does he abruptly need time off, but he has to have absolute trust and complete support from Ross without being able to tell Ross a thing.
CIA Agent Stefan Mortimer needs Kyle’s help with a case of a geneticist and a missing formula. Trouble is being led right to Kyle’s door, endangering the life of the team he has built and the man that he loves.
Going undercover, with Ross as his husband, is the worst kind of torture in so many ways, but it is the only answer. Kyle and Ross may well live through this but Kyle is convinced his heart won’t survive.
Book 1 – Bodyguard to a Sex God
Book 2 – The Ex Factor
Book 3 – Max and the Prince
Excerpt: As soon as Max left the room, Kyle reached for the phone. He hesitated, with his fingers an inch from the handset, and listened to its beep indicating a call waiting.
Stefan Mortimer was at the other end of the call. That was a name Kyle hadn’t expected to hear again for a very long time, and the fact the man had contacted Kyle didn’t bode well. Especially considering Kyle thought, his and Stefan’s association had been put to bed a long time ago. A twinge of guilt accompanied the memories. He’d been the one told to leave, he was the one who’d had no choice but to go, but leaving Stefan behind had never sat well with him.
A combination of anxiety and fear fluttered in his chest as he picked up the handset and pressed the button to connect.
Only to be offered a line that was dead.
“Stefan?” Kyle said to the empty air. For a second he held the receiver to his ear, then, very deliberately, replaced the handset in the cradle. Kyle rested his head on his hands, scrubbing his face to clear the tension. When the door opened, he knew it was Ross. He always knew when it was Ross.
“He got cut off,” Ross announced.
Kyle nodded. “So I see.”
Ross sat down in the visitor’s chair directly opposite. “Is he a new client? Should I start a file for him?”
“No, an old….” How could he describe Stefan? Ex-lover, partner, old friend? “Someone I knew.”
Ross eased forward in his chair, his gray eyes bright with interest. “Knew? Like you used your experience as a spy to know?” he asked in his usual inquisitive tone.
“From before,” Kyle said. He was deliberately vague. As he was every time anyone at Bodyguards Inc. skirted near what Kyle used to do for a living. Ross loved to tease that Kyle had been CIA black ops. To be honest, Ross wasn’t that far from the truth—but that had been a long time ago now.