I was a very small kid –probably five or six years old--when I began to help my dad as a go-fer and such. I was the eldest child in the family and naturally became the step-n-fetchit for many efforts. What memories! Like a way of patching the tubes that went in old fashioned tires where you burned this stinky stuff to melt a blob of vulcanized rubber over the hole! Ugh, what a stench! And a trip from our home in north central Arizona to say Phoenix usually put holes in more than one. Oh, those were the “good” old days!
We lived most of my early years in the “boonies”—very small towns and even more rural and remote places, so people did not have a friendly mechanic shop down the street. I learned what a lot of tools were called and where they should be found in the tool box. With that in my background, when the topic “it happened in a garage” came up as a possible PAX collection, I jumped right in. Feet first and look later—that’s me!
When it turned out that all five stories were going to involve mechanics, the title officially became Grease Monkeys Inc and that was okay. Not real sexy—LOL—but I am sure all the stories are! And I know they will be very different as our collections always are. Our authors bring a lot of different background and baggage to their writing and it comes through in each writer’s voice, style and plots. I think that is one great factor about the PAX collections!
As with all of my tales, a character emerges from the tangled closets of my weird mind and starts to talk to me. That first character was Mal, my young mechanic, who has battled some major obstacles to reach his present expertise and level of security. I really got a liking for him, too. He’s the kind of guy I admire. With my background, at least in this current life, I don’t know a lot about city people so you won’t find too many in my stories. They seldom feel quite real to me nor does their world.
Mal was a farmer’s son and had a bad accident as a teenager. Despite that, he has worked to make something of himself and has a lot of pride and confidence, although only in the realm of his work. In the rest of his life, he’s pretty shy and a bit self-effacing. So who would he be drawn to? I soon learned it was a good looking, somewhat older guy who seems to have the world on a string.
In Mal’s own words, it was like having a crush on a sports figure or a rock star when he saw and secretly lusted after rancher Dan Winslow. Dan might be a little more of a stereotyped figure but he has his quirks and his troubles, too. Of course I set their tale in a region that I’m at home in, a fictitious place in southern New Mexico that could be around my current home town of Alamogordo or near Silver City where I lived briefly a few years back. There is a ranch, horses, mechanical issues and trouble involving illicit drugs… Well, you will have to read the story to learn what all happens. It is a romance so it will have a good ending but that’s all I am ready toreveal. No spoilers!
Of course there is a giveaway here. I’ll choose one person who comments on today’s post for a free download of Wrenching. If you have already bought the PAX after reading some of the excerpts and posts that preceded mine, you can have your pick of my Amber Allure backlist. There is a lot of variety there from more western and outdoor tales to some rural fantasy (like urban fantasy in a rural setting), a few historical tales, a Gothic, and even some futuristic space opera types. Yep, I’m one of those crazy authors who writes all over the map and thanks the Powers That Be for a publisher who lets me do it! I always did like to color outside the lines.
My next PAX tale is already in but not yet edited and will be out later in the summer. It’s about cat shifters and takes place in and around a fictitious southwestern US zoo. I had a blast writing it and hope my readers will enjoy it equally well. The title is Catastrophe. You can learn more about it, about Wrenching and of course other past and future projects with a visit to my blog: www.deirdredares.blogspot.com BTW I really love the cover for Wrenching! Nothing like a guy with a big tool and the know-how to use it with skill. ;-)
Wrenching by Deirdre O'Dare is now available at Amber Allure.
If you'd like the chance to win the entire pax collection, just leave a comment on today's post. On Saturday, a winner will be picked at random from all the comments made this week on the blog. Comment on all, and that's multiple chances to win!