Play Makers: new novella coming soon!

I'll post the description soon, but remember Wish Bennett? As an adorable rookie, he flirted with Tess in PLAYING FOR KICKS and then got some playing time in PLAY CALLING. Now he's in his second year with the Lancers and ready to make big plays on and off the field.

play mates


I kept you in suspense, but now that the book is due for release on June 26th, time to reveal the hero and heroine:

Jill Colby has crashed and burned. Her marriage? Over. Her confidence? Shot. Even her little sister pities her! So much for being perfect. Then she meets newly divorced football hunk Jayce Spurling and discovers that being imperfect is a lot more fun. And it’s just one night, isn’t it?

Jayce never saw his divorce coming and he’s determined to win back his family for the sake of his children. If ever four boys needed a live-in dad, it’s that bunch.

His ex-wife tells him to move on, but he’s sure he can make things right. Still, when gorgeous Jill Colby suggests a one-night stand, he can’t resist.  She doesn’t want anything serious, plus she lives on the other side of the country. And it’s just one night, isn’t it?

His family—especially QB Johnny—would go nuts if they heard he was deviating from the game plan: get his wife and kids back. But Jill needs to keep this from her family, too. So there’s no danger of it getting out.

And it’s just one night.

Isn’t it?


PLAY FAKE -- and Happy New Year!

We’ll be releasing a new story in the PLAY MAKERS universe this month. It is novella length (although a lot longer than PLAY BY PLAY was/is) and the cast of characters is much smaller than the last few books.  I’m trying to balance the needs of newcomers to the series who are sometimes overwhelmed by the Triple Threat group, but I also want to reward the loyalty of long-time readers of the series who love seeing the old gang and the long, messy plots.

It was easy to make the new novella – PLAY FAKE – more of a straightforward standalone since it deals with a different football team: the Rustlers in LA rather than the Lancers in Portland. In other words, the Triple Threat characters aren’t hanging around.  We’ll see Aaron Spurling, of course, since he’s the head coach of the Rustlers. And there’s a cameo by Wyatt Bourne since he’s their QB.

After PLAY FAKE, we’ll have another book out in early summer, and trust me, that one will be a big, big book where we’ll catch up with the whole gang even though the hero and heroine aren’t Portland based. (Wait till you see who they are!) That big summer book will be a tribute to the readers who love the overarching storyline and large cast of characters in the main series as much as I do. in the meantime, you’ll love PLAY FAKE, too, I promise. Wait till you meet Nick! And check out the Epilogue for news about Deck.)

As soon as I have the finalized cover for PLAY FAKE I’ll post it here along with a blurb about the story.

Thanks and Happy New Year!
play calling daniel riga


Here's what it's about:

Daniel Riga, the controversial head coach of the Portland Lancers, has the same rule for press conferences as for anything else during football season: football only. The man doesn’t even date except in the off-season. So why are these reporters asking about some sociologist who inexplicably called him a zombie in her latest newspaper column? On the Lifestyles page, no less!
Noelle Sharpe is mortified that her words have been taken out of context, since her tongue-in-cheek point was that zombies focus on a single obsession—eating brains—but a brilliant, vibrant man like Daniel Riga should broaden his horizons past football-only. Her attempt at apologizing in print only leads to another round of jokes at the handsome coach’s expense, so she tracks him down for an in-person apology.
As frustrated as he is with this zombie nonsense, Daniel goes wild for Noelle and they end up in bed. Unfortunately, it’s football season, so he asks her to wait for him until the off-season. By now, she’s so crazy about him, and so worried she’ll cost the Lancers their season by distracting him, she readily agrees.
Zombies consume brains. That’s all they do. And Daniel Riga consumes football. That’s all he does. Or at least until Noelle Sharpe writes her way into his life and gives football some serious competition.
playing for keeps

Play Makers updates

Just a quick note to say:
(1) Daniel Riga’s book will be out soon -- yay!
(2)  We’re restructuring the Play Makers series over the next few days so you might see some growing pains. For example, there are currently two books labelled Book Three exc on Amazon as they make the shift. When the dust settles, it will be:
Playing for Keeps – BOOK ONE
Play Date – BOOK TWO
Power Play – BOOK THREE
Playing for Kicks – BOOK FOUR
Next full-length Book (to be released this Summer 2016) – BOOK FIVE
Another Full-length Book (to be released early next Summer 2017) – BOOK SIX
We also have a novella (PLAY BY PLAY), and we'll be adding a second one this coming January. And after that, a few others. It’s awkward placing the novellas in the mainstream-series lineup so we’re excluding them but still marking them as Play Makers stories. They enhance the main threads – which are the Triple Threat, the Portland Lancers, the Spurling family, and the Murf Murphy sports agency – but they don’t really fit the flow and thus can be read out of order.

For example, I’m finally writing a short novella about a guy named Luke Stoddard, whom you may remember as the rookie QB whose career skyrocketed then imploded on the LA Rustlers. We heard about Luke’s woes in POWER PLAY and PLAYING FOR KICKS but I didn’t want to interrupt the momentum by building a full book around him. By placing the novella outside the main timeline, we can have another full-length book right away (Daniel Riga) but also have Luke’s story, which takes place during the same summer as PLAYING FOR KICKS and right before Riga’s book.

With this freedom, I can also play around with format and subgenre in ways I don’t feel comfortable for the big books. I try to make each book individual and unique, but I know there are reader expectations, too.  So I can maintain a level of consistency for the big books and still keep them fresh, but for something really different, novellas might provide the outlet I need.  (In PLAY BY PLAY for example I experimented with using blog posts as a storytelling device, which I loved. For the Stoddard book we’ll have a hint of suspense in the background although the major emphasis will still be on romance, humor and football). Hopefully series readers can pick-and-choose which novellas they find appealing without being concerned about missing Triple Threat action.

Hmmm, did I promise you a “quick” note? Sorry, but I’m unreasonably excited about this tweak to our game plan. All we’re really saying is: Novellas don’t get a “series number” any more but they’re still in the Play Makers universe. Works for me, and hopefully works for you, too!

p.s. I’ll share more about Daniel soon – he’s hunky and totally obsessed with football so he was fun to write.
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