[This ficlet is not part of a larger work. I don't have any other stories involving these characters. It's just a fun little story written using the three prompt words in the subject line. I very much hope you enjoy it. :)]

Pretty, Fabricate, Comply

"There are rules, you know. Procedures. Safety regulations. Reasons we are not supposed to be up here." Gordon's handsome face looked a little too determined. Almost as though it were costing him conscious effort to keep his habitual stern glower in place.

Sam smirked, crossing his arms atop the sturdy metal railing that ran the perimeter of the roof. "And you comply with every rule that crosses your path?"

Gordon didn't answer. He couldn't very well answer without either lying—transparent and unconvincing—or conceding the point. The glower on his face took a faintly sullen turn, but his posture remained taut. He clasped his hands stiffly behind his back, and his gaze left Sam in favor of casting out across the city.

Sam did not mind his employer's rigid posture or sour expression. He knew how significant it was that Gordon was here at all—that he had accepted Sam's invitation despite the rules, and joined him on this inconceivably high rooftop.

It was a hell of a view. This far up, the grid-work of panels along the massive dome was visible above their heads. In all directions stood a vast array of city. Tall, sturdy buildings, fabricated in orbital construction facilities. No less beautiful for being comprised of repurposed metal and bio-filament, and the detritus of the solar system.

Sam let his own attention linger on the blocky skyline. He'd been to plenty of planets since he first started working for Gordon; none of them were compelling in quite the same way as Mars.

"It's a pretty view, though." Sam spoke loud enough to be heard over the endless wind. "You can't see nearly this far from the observation lounge."

"It's something," Gordon agreed in a tone of grudging appreciation.

The concession was honestly more than Sam had hoped for, and his smirk spread into a wide smile of genuine satisfaction. He bit his tongue, because as always he needed to be careful. Gordon knew him too well, and it became every day more difficult to guard the secret but distracting infatuation Sam had been harboring for far too long. Affection glowed brightly in his chest; if he spoke now, he would give himself away for sure.

In his peripheral vision he saw Gordon's weight shift, saw the unyielding posture ease just the barest fraction. Saw Gordon uncross powerful arms and brace them almost casually on the guardrail.

"And how long," Gordon murmured in that all too familiar rumble, "is it customary to 'take in the view' when one is trespassing on restricted sectors of corporate property?"

Sam's smile did not fade. "Technically it's not trespassing if you own the building."

A couple days into 2019, it's hard not to be a little introspective. I'm not going to make a list of last year's accomplishments, or come up with resolutions for the coming year. Those aren't really traditions I go in for, not least because I'm competitive as hell. The last thing I need is a string of posts I can find and compare myself to year after year, which will inevitably leave me feeling disappointed when I don't hit new milestones or write as many words as before or or or…

But I've got a lot of things right now that I'm grateful for:
* A day job I sincerely love, where I get to work with books every single day
* A supportive family who will always have my back
* Incredible, kind, talented, indescribable friends that make me feel lucky as hell
* Time and energy to keep writing, even when the query/submission process is overwhelmingly daunting

At the moment, I've got one manuscript in submission limbo. Took a while (not an unreasonable amount of time, just longer than my brain and heart wanted to wait) to hear back from my absolute top choice agent. The good news is, I got farther than I expected. She liked my query enough to request a partial manuscript. The bad news is, the partial didn't win her over. Obviously I'm going to try again… And obviously I'm going to sell this manuscript elsewhere… But rejection stings no matter what.

One thing I will say for this coming year: I have more stories than ever reverting to me after their contract terms expire. Historically, I've been slow as hell about revising-reformatting-rereleasing old stories. The very few I've done so far (Sage & Sand, Wonderly Wroth, Especially at Christmas) have taken me ages to get done. Not because they're long or especially challenging, but because every time it's like starting over with no knowledge of the process.

I'm going to try and stay more on top of this going forward. I already have covers designed for the next couple stories. That still leaves additional editing and then the dreaded formatting-to-publish (not to mention questions of what to do with two or three more stories I haven't touched yet). But I'm determined to stay on top of my back-catalog and get things wrangled so that nothing stays out of print too long.

And of course, there are things I'm writing right now. I can't wait to finish and share them with you, guys, they're going to be so good!

In the meantime: Happy New Year! May you find luck and safety and wonderful friends on your own forward path. Let's make 2019 excellent!
[This ficlet is not part of a larger work. I don't have any other stories involving these characters. It's just a fun little story written using the three prompt words in the subject line. I very much hope you enjoy it. :)]

"Do you really have to go?" A plaintive note snuck into the question, but Alec didn't waste any effort worrying whether it made him sound desperate. So what if it did? Maybe it would convince Grant not to leave. Surely some underling could go in his place.

Wasn't that the point of being a CEO? The ability to delegate? )
So the thing is, one of my favorite parts of re-releasing old stories is the fact that I get to design new covers for them. I don't love the revision process, or formatting the actual contents of the book. But cover design? That's more fun than it has any right to be.

I've got a handful of stories (most of them very short) that have reverted to my control this past year, and a couple more that will be coming back to me soon. Which means I need to get off my butt on formatting and re-releasing these titles. Sage & Sand is still set to come out on December 13th, after almost a year on the back burner. I'm hoping to move a lot faster in 2019, with at least two stories to re-release, possibly three (in between new things I'm working on and will hopefully be able to announce soon/along the way).

Anyway. That was rather a long tangent to preface the fact that the next story I'll be re-releasing is Anticipation (smutty PWP friends-to-lovers fic in the range of 7,000 words). I don't have a release date chosen yet, but what I do have is a cover design to share.

I'm gonna tuck the image below a cut for the sake of the dramatic reveal... )

True Things

Nov. 10th, 2018 08:22 am
yolandekleinn: (Me)
So. Here's a truth: I don't like writing about me.

I never really have. Even as a kid writing blatant self-insert fanfic—projecting every scrap of youthful angst onto characters I wanted to be—I only ever wrote fiction. I kept to the pretext of writing stories and nonexistent events. I never successfully kept a journal; I think I gave up on anything like a diary somewhere around sixth grade.

No matter how many issues I hash out through fictional characters, knowingly or otherwise, the hardest stories for me to write are the ones that hit close to home. The sweet but overwhelming family in "Simple After All" tracks so near to my own that drafting the story was surreal as hell. I'm working on a book now in which a character picks up their violin and discovers the joy/difficulty of playing again after years away.

And then there's Ilsa Vance, my asexual space detective who has a falling out with a close friend in "Open Skies". She's by far the most difficult character arc I've ever written—not least because I was determined to give her the support and acknowledgment I never received from the friend who said the same hurtful things to me.

This habit isn't likely to change. Projecting onto fictional characters has its merits. Even better, the blatant escapism and entertainment of my less personal stories is satisfying in ways I've never really known how to express. (My family, bless them, has supported me at every turn, despite my inability to articulate why I sometimes bury myself in fiction for days or weeks at a time.)

But. Maybe it would do me good to branch out a little. Take a more direct approach now and then. Try and shake off the fierce but irrational voice in my head insisting The Real Me is too boring to waste words on, and instead put myself out there a little more.

That's what this is. No promises, but I'm going to do my best. And hey, if you're reading this and there's anything you'd like to know, go ahead and ask. I may not possess a whole lot of insights or life-hacks, but what I've got I'm happy to share.

By Yolande Kleinn

"I forgot what it's like here. The noise, the people, the ridiculously low ceilings... Was it always this crowded?" Gareth asked without looking at Lee, too busy gaping around him at the rush-hour chaos of crowds both human and not. The station's companion hub on the planet's surface wasn't nearly this claustrophobic, but space was valuable in orbit. Magre Station used every possible trick and then some in its design, and the result was a genius arrangement of uncomfortably tight corridors and quarters.

Click to read on... )
Sometimes I deal with winter by burying myself in half a dozen blankets and comforters and quilts. Other times I cope with the cold by inflicting it on fictional characters. You get two guesses which this is.

by Yolande Kleinn

Midnight always does strange things to Alan's head, and to his heart, and to the voice of reason that usually stops him from making an idiot of himself. )

First person POV and I don't always get along, so this was a little ways outside my comfort zone. As with my other dabblings, this story is just a short and self-contained little thing, not part of a greater whole. Just a quick little piece of fluff, which I hope you enjoy.

Testing the Waters
by Yolande Kleinn

"Did you mean it?" Julian asked. "What you said before. About me. Was it true?"

For a moment I was too shocked that he was even talking to me to form a coherent response. After my wretchedly awkward confession, what could he possibly hope I'd say?

"Mason." He snapped his fingers in front of my face as though not sure I was even seeing him. "Mason, come on, man. You can't go catatonic on me, we need to talk."

Read more... )

Exciting news of the day: July 23rd is the day Torquere Press releases "Rode Hard", a cowboy themed anthology of epic proportions. In my own contribution, "Sage and Sand", a young man runs into some excitement (danger! bandits! rescue?) on his father's mail route. The story is historical fiction, m/m romance, with a nice helping of adventure to warm the blood.

Here I bring you a teaser snippet in anticipation of the coming release. Enjoy!

Teaser: Sage and Sand

He doesn't know this Marshall Maddox. He's got no reason to trust him beyond the fact that so far the man hasn't tried to shoot him. )
Here it is, that thing you didn't even know you were waiting for. This one's an actual drabble, one hundred words exactly (please be impressed by this; word limits and I aren't always friends). This is a snapshot, not part of a larger project. Just a brief exchange that was kicking around my brain.

The night is slurred with meaning, and Drew aches in all the best ways. )



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