BLOG TOUR – #INTERVIEW – Out in the Offense by Lane Hayes – #Excerpt

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🌟 Please join me in welcoming author Lane Hayes to Stories That Make You Smile. Lane has dropped by today to celebrate the recent release of the third book in her popular Out in College Series, Out in the Offense. She also kindly sat down to answer a few questions about her process in writing this fabulous book, and what’s coming soon. Don’t forget to read the excerpt, too, while you’re here! 🌟

Out in the Offense by Lane Hayes

When an unlikely friendship collides with intense attraction, both men begin to realize that coming out on offense just might be the surest path to love.

Series: Out in College (book #3)
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Release Date: January 6, 2019
Length: 183 pages
Heat Rating: Steamy
Pairing / Genre(s) / Keyword(s): M/M Contemporary Romance

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Blurb

Christian Rafferty is a talented quarterback with a big secret. He’s determined to make the most of his final season on the football field, and if possible, avoid any confrontations with his conservative parents about his future. It shouldn’t be difficult; he’s become adept at keeping his public and private lives separate. However, when a math class threatens to derail his plans to graduate on time, he realizes he may need outside help.

Rory Kirkland has a reputation for being a tough guy. He’s a former wrestler and recent college graduate who needs a real job. Until he finds one, tutoring is a decent temporary gig. Luckily, his brain is his biggest asset. Rory is a genius. He credits his sport for helping him deal with angst and rumors about his sexuality when he was younger, but he doesn’t care what others think anymore. He likes his new status as an out and proud bi man; and he recognizes something of himself in Christian. But Rory didn’t count on falling for him. When an unlikely friendship collides with intense attraction, both men begin to realize that coming out on offense just might be the surest path to love.

Excerpt

“You don’t want to hear about my game or the stupid college parties I went to, so let’s talk statistics.” I tapped the cover of the textbook meaningfully.

“We’ll get there. Did you win?”

“Yeah, it was a blowout.”

“Sorry, the acoustics in here are whack. Did you say you got a blowjob?”

I snickered, then sat back and twisted the straw in my to-go cup. “Unfortunately, no.”

Rory tsked. “Too bad, my friend.”

“Did you?”

“Yep. I want to brag and tell you it was amazing, but it wasn’t all that special. I was horny. He was willing.…You know the story.”

“Yeah, I think it’s called a short story with a happy ending,” I joked.

Ha! Exactly. That’s what happens when you go lookin’ for love in da club. Everyone’s out for a quick fix. Sounds perfect until it’s over ten minutes later. Then you gotta deal with the uncomfortable ‘Did we really just do that?’ aftermath. Not so fun. Enjoy college life while you can. This adult business sucks,” he huffed humorlessly. “And yeah, I took Spanish in school and my brother speaks it. I know enough to hold a short conversation. That’s about it. Why’d you ask?”

I frowned. “I don’t know.”

Rory gave me a patient look. “Talk to me, Christian. We covered Basic BS 101. You told me you won your game and went to a coupla boring parties. I told you I went to WeHo with some friends. Now I’m backtracking to your question about whether or not I speak Spanish ’cause I’m polite like that. Plus it was a weird one. Why’d you want to know?”

“Your tattoo,” I replied, gesturing at his wrist.

Rory turned his palms over for me to inspect. “They’re lines from a Pablo Neruda poem. This one says, ‘En mí todo ese fuego se repite’ and this says, ‘En mí nada se apaga ni se olvida.’ The translation is, ‘In me all this fire is repeated’ and ‘In me nothing is extinguished or forgotten.’ The poem is called ‘If You Forget Me,’ and it’s poignant as fuck. If you don’t know it, look it up.”

“I will. That’s cool.” And “poignant as fuck,” as he so eloquently put it. “But what does it mean to you?” I asked.

“That goes a little beyond water-cooler talk, QB. We’ll save it for when and if we get to know each other well enough to tell secrets,” he said, winking to take the sting from his words.

I nodded in understanding but instead of pulling away, I absently reached out to touch the script. Then I looked into his eyes, and I could have sworn I saw the tiniest crack in his armor before an invisible shield fell into place. In that fraction of a second, a silent communication passed between us. He’d been through hard times and he’d emerged…possibly stronger than ever. I was curious for sure, but there was no way to politely ask his story, so I inclined my head and switched gears.

“Did you study poetry in college?”

“No.” Rory sat back and eyed me for a long moment before continuing. “Are you ready to tackle stats now?”

I slumped in my chair with a theatrical sigh and gave myself a mental high five when he chuckled at my antics. “Ready as I’ll ever be.”

“I’ll go easy on you. I’ve got a feeling this is gonna hurt me more than it’ll hurt you,” he snarked.

I chuckled at the playful innuendo as I leaned forward, intent on giving him one hundred percent of my attention for as long as I could possibly stand it.

☆ Author Interview ☆

Welcome, and thank you for stopping by! Tell us a little about yourself and your writing goals.

Hello! Thank you so much for inviting me to stop by and chat with you about my recent release, Out in the Offense. This is Book 3 in my recent series, Out in College. The series is set fairly close to where I live in Southern California. It’s set at a local university and is centered around a few of my favorite sports! So far, water polo (Out in the Deep) and football (Out in the End Zone and Out in the Offense), but there are more additions to the series coming soon!

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?

Out in the Offense is a coming out story. Christian is the star quarterback from a conservative family who’s had a big secret for a very long time. When his math grade threatens to keep him out of a game, he agrees to get a tutor. But Rory is very unexpected. He’s a tattooed bad boy slash former wrestler with a fun sense of humor and… he’s a genius! I probably shouldn’t play favorites but I have to admit, I love Rory. I love his hard won confidence, his quick mind and most of all, I love the way he falls for Christian. It’s all encompassing. Rory gives him room to grow and figure out who he is in his very unique style.

What was the inspiration?

Since this is the third book in Out in College, this story grew from the one before it. Both Christian and Rory have small roles in Out in the End Zone that left me wondering what was next for them. Side note…my books can all be read as standalones. You can jump in at any time.

Are you a planner or a pantser? How much do you know about your story before you start writing? How often does your plan change? Why does this work best for you?

I’m a notorious pantser!! I begin with an outline and the best of intentions to stick to it, but it never goes according to plan! LOL. My characters give me a lot of direction. If I’m lucky, I stay relatively on course, but it depends on what works best in the story.

Did your story turn out as you’d originally planned, or did it veer off in another direction?

It always veers!! LOL. Ultimately, I love where Christian and Rory took me though. They have a rich story and they allowed me to introduce some fun new characters for the next couple of Out in College books!

Of all your story characters, who gave you the most trouble?

Great question! Every book has little challenges. The first one to come to mind is Seth and Paul from Better Than Safe. It was the first book where I rewrote a chapter after I’d given it to the editor. Ultimately, I was happy with the outcome so it was worth the stress. LOL

Do deadlines motivate you or block you? How do you deal with them?

Deadlines definitely motivate me. I’m a world-class procrastinator. But I get things done!

Tell us a little bit about your work(s) in progress!

My WIP is a spin-off from the Out in College stories, specifically Out in the Offense. It’s a rock and roll series set in LA AND Book 1, Starting At Zero, is a May/December romance. It’s due early spring! And then… Book 4 of Out in College. Mark your calendars!

Meet the Author

Lane Hayes is grateful to finally be doing what she loves best. Writing full-time! It’s no secret Lane loves a good romance novel. An avid reader from an early age, she has always been drawn to well-told love story with beautifully written characters. These days she prefers the leading roles to both be men. Lane discovered the M/M genre a few years ago and was instantly hooked. Her debut novel was a 2013 Rainbow Award finalist and subsequent books have received Honorable Mentions, and were winners in the 2016 Rainbow Awards. She loves red wine, chocolate and travel (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband in an almost empty nest.

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