By Amy Lane
My love affair with the ocean began when I was a little kid. It’s a dalliance, really, made poignant by good music and a number of memorable summer flings, and it’s a passion I’ve shared with my children. We have a number of beautiful pictures of my family at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, or on a ferry ride in San Francisco, or even in the surf in San Diego.
And like a lot of family love affairs, my parents passed it down to me.
The ocean was one an inexpensive day trip for my dad and stepmom and they have some snapshots to prove it. Gas was cheap, most campgrounds didn’t charge, and it gave the kids something to do besides drive them bugshit. Good deal all around.
One summer, a couple of years into their relationship, they decided that they were going traveling. They had four weeks of vacation, so they packed up Brother Bus and we all packed our teeny-tiny knapsacks and we got on the road.
So anyway, one of our first trips was simply to Washington, to visit some old friends of my dad. (I have mixed memories of these people—on the one hand, they taught me all the words to “Dead Flowers” and “Dead Skunk in the Middle of the Road” and on the other hand, they kept telling me they were going to turn my dog’s litter into puppy stew. I think, on the whole, they were sort of terrible people, but I was young.) On our way to visit them, though, we stopped of the coast of Oregon to visit my dad’s best friend from high school.
He made his living fishing.
Every morning—if he needed the money—he took his twenty-foot dory out into the ocean alone and cast with net and pole. He ate some and sold some, and only worked when he needed to.
And what a fuckin’ office.
I remember the ocean being kind, with few breakers, when my stepbrother and I got into the dory with Dave, and the fog was so thick we couldn’t see the shore only a few feet out. The whole world was gray and padded, but the sound of the ocean grew vast, and the swells grew terrifyingly huge. (I was eight—for all I know we never left the breakwater, but I was terrified.)
The idea that someone made a living out there, all alone in the big scary blue?
No whiny stepsister? No stepbrother who liked to beat people up? We could take the dog? What wasn’t to love! In my innocence I assumed I could bring a book as long as the stupid adults weren’t there to make me leave it in the car, so even that need was addressed. And the ocean was spooky and big and amazing.
I was a fan.
I was also a fan of digging for clams—in the actual, literal sense. (Get your mind out of the gutter, you!) I personally didn’t find any clams, but the idea—that you would poke a stick down through a hole, feel the neck of the critter retract, and then you’d dig and get one of those things that lived in the shells? That was pretty cool. And other people got clams—and crabs, too while I’m thinking about it! (Again. Out. Of. The. Gutter.)
The sea was everything an introverted eight year old could yearn for in the world.
So when I wanted to write about characters in the Pacific Northwest, a fisherman was my first thought. Imagine my dismay when I realized Cal wouldn’t be going out into the open sea the way my dad’s friend did. Now imagine my joy when I got to discover a whole different kind of fishing.
So when you read about Cal and Avery going out on the boat, try to imagine that vastness, that deep and quiet alone. That little tiny boat in the big blue. The introverted loner finding a place that didn’t make her carsick—or make her feel excluded. A haven, a home, a sanctuary.
That’s the heart of this story. It’s about how we find our peace.
Title: The Deep of the Sound by Amy Lane
Book Eight of the Bluewater Bay Universe
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, M/M, Romance
Length: 309/Word Count: 82,000
Cal McCorkle has lived in Bluewater Bay his whole life. He works two jobs to support a brother with a laundry list of psychiatric diagnoses and a great uncle with Alzheimer’s, and his personal life amounts to impersonal hookups with his boss. He’s got no time, no ambition, and no hope. All he has is family, and they’re killing him one responsibility at a time.
Avery Kennedy left Los Angeles, his family, and his sleazy boyfriend to attend a Wolf’s Landing convention, and he has no plans to return. But when he finds himself broke and car-less in Bluewater Bay, he’s worried he’ll have to slink home with his tail between his legs. Then Cal McCorkle rides to his rescue, and his urge to run away dies a quick death.
Avery may seem helpless at first, but he can charm Cal’s fractious brother, so Cal can pretty much forgive him anything. Even being adorkable. And giving him hope. But Cal can only promise Avery “until we can’t”—and the cost of changing that to “until forever” might be too high, however much they both want it.
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Purchase Link: Riptide Publishing
Amy Lane exists happily with her noisy family in a crumbling suburban crapmansion, and equally happily with the surprisingly demanding voices who live in her head.
She loves cats, movies, yarn, pretty colors, pretty men, shiny things, and Twu Wuv, and despises house cleaning, low fat granola bars, and vainglorious prickweenies.
She can be found at her computer, dodging housework, or simultaneously reading, watching television, and knitting, because she likes to freak people out by proving it can be done.
Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for an eBook package of all of Amy Lane’s backlist titles with Riptide! (Excludes The Deep of the Sound and anthologies.) Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on June 20, 2015. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Don’t forget to add your email so we can contact you if you win.
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