The Stalker Within
I have a huge list of authors I love in a variety of genres, but my all-time top-of-the-list-favorite is Cherry Adair. When I first started out writing, a lot of years ago, I entered a writing contest where one of the prizes was working with her in a writing workshop. I won, but soon found out I wasn’t in her workshop. I was disappointed.
During that trip, I’d been standing with three other writers when we spotted Cherry walking toward us. Seeing us wearing our tags for the workshops, she stopped, smiled, and asked us what we each wrote. After prolific answers from the others, it was my turn. I hesitated for a second, although it felt like hours, then said, “I- I-I write a bunch of stuff.” That was my wondrous answer. I offered great detail on my current WIPs, after all, I did say “bunch”, with a stutter I never realized I had.
Cherry, being gracious, and still smiling, stared at me for a minute waiting to see if I’d planned to say more. I hadn’t. Having realized I was done, she’d continued on to the next subject. I immediately excused myself, ran up to my room, and called my husband.
I was devastated, and maybe even cried. I had met my writing idol and gaged it. After giving my husband the play by play, instead of laughing, he gave me advice. I was to pull myself together and get back out there. So, I took a deep breath, pulled on my big girl girdle, and left the room. When my elevator arrived at the ground floor, I got off, and Cherry Adair got on. Without hesitation this time, I got back on too.
As the doors closed, Cherry, still looking cheery, peered at me. “Wrong floor?” she’d asked.
I smiled back, grateful that my lips moved, but saddened that my mouth wouldn’t.
Cherry pushed the third-floor button, and as we’d traveled up, with each ding of the elevator, I saw my dream disappearing. Halfway passed the second floor, I looked at her. Then I continued to look at her, for as long as would have seemed rude, or creepy, if she’d noticed.
The silence was stifling, and I couldn’t take it anymore. “I’m your biggest fan. I started writing because of you. I’m in New Orleans because of you. And one of my biggest dreams was to meet you,” I blurted out. The whole rant spewed out of my mouth in a total of two seconds and on one breath of air.
Being the amazing person she was, she’d smiled, and thankfully it hadn’t been a forced nervous type of smile. “That’s awesome,” she said. “It’s great to meet you, Leslie.”
I almost fainted. She actually remembered my name, which I hadn’t realized I’d said during my earlier fumbling. Before she could say any more, the elevator door opened, I turned, and stepped out. Knowing it couldn’t get any better—I walked away, lost somewhere in the hotel, but not caring.
About four years later, there was a fundraiser where one of the prizes was a chance to attend a master class with Cherry Adair while staying at her guest house. Being the stalker I somewhat proved I was the last time I met her—I decided to up my game. I placed my bid, and continued to raise the amount, whenever anyone else threatened to go higher. It was as if it were destiny or A LOT of money to an amazing cause. I got the opportunity to stay at her guest house, along with three other friends. While there, I got to interact, write alongside, be tutored by, and breathe the same air as, my idol. And if I remember correctly, I did it all while being coherent.
It was one of the best times of my life, and Cherry Adair remains one of my all-time favorite people.
Title: Love, Trust, and Secrets
Author: LA Bryce
Publisher: JMS Books
Release Date: July 9, 2019
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 300
For a man on the run, is finding love a good enough reason to stay? And for a man who doesn’t want to leave, is a secret enough reason to walk away?
Even though a bad situation brings Tyler and Jarod together, they quickly find the good in their relationship. But when Tyler falls in love and finds the feelings returned, he’s forced to question if his and Jarod’s relationship is worth risking his freedom, his life, and their hearts.
Jarod knows Tyler is hiding something, but his fear of scaring Tyler away has him accepting Tyler’s silence. But instead of keeping Tyler close, Jarod’s avoidance ultimately leads to Tyler being taken away, leaving Jarod clueless and unable to help the man he loves.
Love, Trust, and Secrets is a story whose main focus is the love between two men and all the trial and tribulations that come with that love
About LA Bryce
I’ve been telling stories for as long as I can remember; my parents tell me it’s been going on even further back than that and not always at the appropriate times. Now I choose to use my gift for good.
I enjoy meeting new people, even if they’re only in my head.
I believe love comes in all different packages and each should be wrapped in a ribbon and cherished.
I’m currently working on a contemporary romance with a splash of suspense. I get a thrill coming up with unexpected and usually dangerous situations for my characters to be in and then thinking of extraordinary ways for them to escape with outcomes that deviate from the expected.
I live with my family in the Northeast where we enjoy white winters, balmy summers, a spring flurried with fragrant flowers, and a fall filled with piles of leaves to dive in to. Our small town offers the old world charm of knowing your neighbor and its location enables us to take off for dinner in a city known for its beautiful skyline or to an afternoon playing in the sand of some of the best beaches found in the United States.
For me, writing is relaxation for the soul and reading is its nourishment.