Please join me in welcoming Author Eric Huffbind to my blog! Eric is here today to tell us about his contemporary gay romance novel, The Rescuer (2nd Edition), his inspiration when writing the story, and a little glimpse into what Eric enjoys doing when he’s not reading or writing! ♡
Book Title: The Rescuer (2nd Edition)
Author: Eric Huffbind
Publisher: Self Published
Cover Artist: Jennifer Craig
Genre/s: Contemporary Gay Male Romance
Length: 59,000 words/212 paperback pages
Christopher’s striking green eyes and handsome good looks didn’t buy him happiness, but he learned to survive off of them to maintain his expensive lifestyle. Now, after he has nearly destroyed himself, he’s in the fight for his life…
A Contemporary Gay Male Romance – Newly Released 2nd Edition
When Christopher Parker checks himself into the Watermeadow Rehabilitation Center, he was frightened for his future and what was to become of him. Haunted from his past, he knows that he has to take this step in his recovery or face his likely death as the alternative. He never expected to find his social worker, Jason Calhoun, incredibly attractive. Christopher dreams of finding a man to love and who will treat him with decency. Although Jason does fit the bill, he knows that this relationship is strictly professional. Completely out of reach for a failure like himself.
Jason, who is a hopeless romantic, is in the endless pursuit of Prince Charming. Always unlucky in love but finds solace in the care of his patients. He loves being needed and having patients that depend on him. Jason comes to realize that the guys he dates always need to be rescued, much like his patients. A strategy that he’s learning is a poor choice.
Jason discovers that Christopher has become tangled up with a famed billionaire. As a billionaire, he can afford anything he wants, which seems to include even the ability to buy true love. Suddenly, he fears that everything he has worked so hard for, both romance and career, is being threatened by his new nemesis.
If you enjoy stories that pull you in and have you caring about the characters and what happens to them, then this is the book for you. It promises to have you laughing, crying, & smiling!
☆ Author Interview ☆
Tell us a little about yourself and your writing goals.
I’m fifty-four-years old and my husband and I have been married for five years now. Although, we have been together fourteen years. My mother-in-law and father-in-law are both clergy and their home is located in Rochester, New York. Back when same-sex marriage was still not legal in Ohio, where my husband and I live, I told him, “let’s go get married already!” Since, marriage in New York was legal, and my in-laws were clergy, it just made sense to elope to New York. I like to tell people I am man of many talents. I’m an RN that spent most of my career working in Cardiac Telemetry and ICU. I have also been a Travel Agent and now a Gay Romance Novelist. Heck, I can even knit and crochet. Writing a book was one of those things that had been on my bucket list for I can’t remember how long. More than a year ago, I got hooked on reading MM Romance books. I just loved them! I have always told people that I love chick flicks. Always loved movies of romance. My husband, Paul does too, but I think I have it much worse then he does. MM Romance books are like being able to watch a romantic movie whenever I want. Since writing a book was always a dream, it just seemed to be a natural evolution to write this genre of novels. Now, if someone would have asked me ten years ago that I would be writing books of romance, I would have said they were crazy. Quite honestly, I would love to make this a full-time career. I know I have a long road ahead of me to make it financially viable, but it’s my dream and I’m not going to give up.
Congratulations on your new release. Please tell us a little bit about it. What’s your favorite aspect or part of the story? Do you have a favorite character? Who/Why?
The rescuer tells the story of Christopher Parker, a young twenty-seven-year old man, who is an alcoholic. Fortunately, he was intelligent and wise enough to recognize the risk he was putting his life in. So, he checks himself into a rehabilitation program. He is very attractive, and he knows it. But good looks certainly did not bring him happiness. Christopher meets his social worker, Jason Calhoun, who quite honestly is a rescuer. He’s a rescuer from a personality point of view. Always wanting to rescue others from whatever their issues are. He wants to do the very best for the patients he cares for. His career most definitely brings him happiness, but not the romantic love he craves. Jason is desperately alone in terms of a love life. Has dated countless men that are as much of a train wreck as his patients. Something must change. As to who my favorite character is, that’s tough question because I love them all since they are products of my imagination. However, if I had to pick one, I think I have to say George Goldman. He is a first cousin to Jason and he only plays a supporting role in my book. George is an incredibly sweet and kind gentleman. He deeply loves his cousin Jason and always has. No doubt Jason makes him happy just by his very presence. They have been bonded since childhood. George is straight, also wants to find love, and he has such complete, total, and unabashed acceptance of Jason as a gay man. It has never been an issue to him. How could it be since he cared so much Jason. He would love to see Jason fall in love with a stable man. Jason’s happiness means the world to him. In my mind, George acts as the perfect role model for who and what a straight ally is. He embodies, in my mind, what each and everyone of us should strive to be. A world void of prejudice and discrimination.
What was your inspiration for your latest story?
I would have to say, not that this would come as a surprise to anyone, it was inspired from my career as a nurse. Christopher represents the good in people. Something in my life I have always tried my very best to do by focusing on the good in people. Far too many of us does just the opposite. He is his own hero in my way of thinking, that is, he was determined that he wasn’t going to allow himself to die over alcohol. Regardless of the emotional, painful journey he was going to need to embark on for his recovery. He is a dream of what I wish for all the patients I had ever cared for. Simply put, ‘the best possible outcome.’ Substance abuse is such an awful and senseless waste of a human life. It was a condition I encountered so often. Jason, on the other hand, is a rescuer. I see myself as a rescuer. Likely the reason I chose a career path of an RN. Often, no matter how much we want to see good outcomes for our patient population, we are faced with defeat because the abused substance carries more weight than recovery does. The Rescuer epitomizes my belief that everyone is capable of recovery from whatever substance they choose to abuse. Christopher makes the choice to be his own hero so that he had the ability to lift up the quality of his life. This act of heroism makes him available to a quality husband material. In other words, he was a ‘real catch!’
What was the most difficult part of writing this book? Why?
For what I am sure may be difficult for many readers to believe, quite honestly, the sex scenes I found the hardest parts of the story to write. I say this with a bit of embarrassment on my part. My friends just laughed at me, in a kind way of course. They couldn’t imagine why that was so difficult. When any given scene develops from my imagination, once I am grounded with what I wish to happen, the words flow easily from my brain down onto my fingertips. Much of what is written in a novel is dialogue. In a sex scene, dialogue tends to play a back seat. Your ability to vividly describe what is taking place between two characters becomes paramount. Thus, it felt to me to be the most challenging to write. I would have to imagine, with some practice, it will become easier for me for future books.
What are your favorite genres when it comes to your own pleasure reading? Do you prefer to read ebooks or print?
Well to no surprise, MM Romance is a huge addiction for me. Although, this is relatively a new passion of mine. As I stated already, it was my love for these books that spurred me on to become a romance writer myself. Quite honestly, as a gay man myself, these novels are extremely relatable. Aside from MM Romance, I would definitely have to say Murder Mysteries. My biggest passion has always been Agatha Christie. Just loved everything she wrote. And although I have read many of her books, I still haven’t read all of them. You would think as a reader of her books I would learned to puzzle out who the killer was. This was not the case, nor was it ever. No matter how hard anyone tries to determine who the killer was, Agatha Christie seem to always pick the character you least expected.
How do you select the names of your characters?
That’s a great question. Sometimes it’s simply a favorite name I love, or it can be just pure brainstorming. In my upcoming novel, I’m drafting now, ‘Distant Cousin,’ I used a name generating tool from Scrivener. It’s a wonderful feature of the software and since I have main characters that have an Irish Catholic heritage, I wanted to find names that were Irish in origin. The Scrivener name generator has a database of unique names that demonstrate a given heritage you are seeking.
What were your goals for this book? Did you achieve them?
My tag line that you will note from the front cover of my book reads, ‘Never give up hope that love is possible.’ In my mind, that is overarching theme of the novel. Some may refer to it as your Simply meaning that once you have read the story, it should be a feeling that you’re left with or takeaway from the book. In the past, I have individuals tell me how lucky I am to have found my husband Paul. Yes, it’s true, he was one hell of a catch! But just like my character of Jason, I can assure you, I kissed an alarming number of frogs to find him. It’s not easy to meet someone that you find truly compatible, but you can’t lose hope that you will. When I started dating heavily to find a husband, it took no less than three years to hit gold. Paul was worth it.
Do you have any hobbies you’d like to tell us about?
That’s an easy question. It has to be my love for Genealogy. I have been a family history enthusiast since my mid 20’s. Meaning, I have been at it for 30 years. My husband and I are both active on the board of our local Genealogical Society. I have always felt, that we should learn about the lives of the ancestors that came before us, so we can understand why they made some of the decisions which they did.
Winter, Spring, Summer, or Autumn (or Wet vs. Dry Season)?
Hands down it has to be Spring! I love the mild temperatures that Ohio receives during these months. It’s perfect weather. Not hot or humid, nor is it freezing cold with streets covered in snow. I get a high from seeing my grass turn green again, the trees blooming, and perennials sprouting up from the earth once again. Spring represents a new beginning and life renewing itself again. I always tell people how much I love the state of Hawaii. The biggest reason for that is the magnificent weather. It is what I call, and my character Christopher called, flawless!
Feeling a set of lips gently pressing on his forehead, Christopher woke up to someone kissing him. He found a strange man gazing down on him; his eyes weren’t quite in focus yet.
“How are you feeling?” asked the stranger.
Christopher suddenly sprang up from the bed recognizing in a split second whose voice it was. “Sam! What the fuck are you doing here?” Eyes now focusing at one-hundred percent.
“I was just checking in on you. I wanted to know how you were feeling? Can’t a friend pay a visit?”
It was Samuel Barron or “Sam” as his cohorts called him. He was a powerful CEO of one of the nation’s top five-hundred corporations, namely Viatone. They were makers of pharmaceuticals. In the years Christopher had known Sam, Viatone had grown to a five-hundred-billion-dollar company.
Sam was a bit more than just a CEO of a huge corporation. At one time, he was one of the nation’s most eligible bachelors—a gorgeous hunk of a man to feast your eyes upon, despite his advancing years. His looks held up like a fine bottle of wine. Women all over the country would swoon over every magazine photo, television news spot, and social media post. And it wasn’t just the women. Every gay man’s dick would jump into action each time they saw an image of this man; Christopher had been among that crowd.
Mr. Barron exuded pure charisma everywhere he went and in everything he touched. He’d been one of the nation’s most eligible bachelors. However, that status changed five years ago, when he married Patsy Rossmiller.
“You’re no friend!” Christopher shouted back in his most snide and angry voice. “And you’re not welcome here, you motherfucking son-of-a-bitch! Get the fuck out of my room! Better yet, get the hell out of my life!” He made no attempt to hide his feelings. Clearly, he was overwhelmed with upset; downright hostile and belligerent.
“Sweetheart, I’ve been worried sick about you,” Sam said.
“I’m not your sweetheart. Not now—not ever,” Christopher shouted with increasing volume. “You’re not worried about me—you selfish asshole. You’re concerned about your reputation. What would this country think of you if they knew the truth? The country—hell, what would the world think if they found out. That’s all you care about. That’s all you ever cared about.”
“Look, you’re not the only one who’s in a position of power, and you know it!” The bastard CEO snarled back.
That was one comment Christopher did not want to hear, and it was the last straw. He couldn’t take the presence of this man, not a single second more. He burst into tears yet again all the while he screamed as loud as he could.
“Get out! Get out! Get out! Get out!” Over and over, he yelled with increasing intensity. In no time at all, the third-floor staff came racing into Christopher’s room; including Jason. Nurse Judy immediately saw the presence of Sam Barron, as did everyone else. She didn’t have the slightest idea what was upsetting her patient to result in such a tumultuous reaction. Looking directly at the unwanted visitor, she calmly said, “Mr. Barron, I think you had better leave.”
It wasn’t as if she or anyone needed to be introduced to this man. Who wouldn’t recognize him? Sam Barron’s notoriety spread everywhere, particularly in the healthcare community. But what the fuck is this man doing in Christopher Parker’s room at Watermeadow of all places was crawling through Jason’s head. He just couldn’t understand what their connection would be.
Mr. Barron knew he was outnumbered, so he nodded graciously and left as instructed. Christopher shouted after him, “And don’t come back—ever! I never want to see you again!”
He now dissolved into a puddle of tears. Eying Jason from across the room, Christopher ran over and flung his arms around the man, weeping uncontrollably; desperately needing to be in the arms of a friend. And although his new case manager wasn’t precisely a friend, he somehow knew he wouldn’t be rejected. His weight, having grabbed Jason so suddenly, pulled them both tumbling to the floor.
Trying to calm him down with a soft, “shhhhhh, listen to me, if you don’t want Mr. Barron coming back again, I can have him barred from the facility, at least while you’re staying with us.” The loud sobbing continued on Jason’s shoulder. “Would you like that?”
Christopher replied in a faint whisper, “Yes, please.”
Holding onto him tightly, he delivered a telling nod over to Judy. It was evident Christopher was overpowered with anger and anxiety that even the Ativan couldn’t assist with. In a complete state of bewilderment, she indicated she would call security at once, preventing the return of this apparent nemesis. Jason was also just as bewildered as he looked over towards her. Despite Sam Barron’s status in this world, he’d be damned if the man would interfere with a patient’s recovery. He was a tremendous advocate where his patients were concerned. “You just cry as much as you need to.”
Christopher tightened his grip around him even more while continuing to soak Jason’s dress shirt with tears. But Jason didn’t mind being clutched so tightly. It made him feel whole inside; that his life had meaning and purpose. It’s what he was good at—being there for others when they needed him. He treasured being needed; he always did.
After ten minutes of constant sobbing, Christopher finally calmed down. The ongoing sniveling had quelled. Jason eased him off the floor and back into bed. “Lie down and rest for a while. Are you feeling better now?” He received a nod back that indicated a positive answer. So, Jason brought Christopher’s feet up onto the bed and pulled the blanket across him. In his experience, a huge crying jag was exhausting.
Jason shut off the lights in the room and closed the door as he exited. He had a stack of paperwork sitting in his office, which needed his attention. One thing was certain in his mind, there weren’t going to be any elves coming around to take care of it for him.
About the Author
Eric Huffbind is a man of many talents. He is a hopeless romantic, licensed registered nurse, has been a travel agent, and the eternal social butterfly. Among his passionate interests are history, genealogy, romance, and travel. Like so many other individuals, he has a long bucket list. On the list, to no surprise, was writing a novel. So this, his debut novel, is a lifetime of raw emotions: be it love, happiness, sadness, tears, joy, anxiety, fear, disappointment, or achievement.
Although, the story in The Rescuer, focuses on the romantic relationship of two gay men, regardless of your sexual orientation, this novel is meant to rekindle the true spirit of romance and love in your heart. If Mr. Huffbind’s story moves you through an array of emotions, and it touches your romantic spirit, please share the book with a friend.
Mr. Huffbind was born in Cincinnati, Ohio and has remained in southwest Ohio for his entire life. His current residence is in West Chester Township, Ohio. He shares his life with his husband, an autistic son, and his beautiful Pomeranian.
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