There’s Something in the Water
by Louis J Harris
Swimmer wasn’t an easy novella to write. I prefer writing thrillers and this was my debut romance. As a result, it took me quite a while. I wanted to write about two guys who both have relationship hiccups. Basil is a successful artist but he’s also a social outcast who lives in a quaint house just off the beach. Four years earlier, his lover upped and left him, just like that. No letter. No sms. Nothing. Not even a postcard. He was so hurt that he vowed never to fall in love again. I could imagine Basil using all his time to paint. I could imagine him taking the blame for his ex-lover’s sudden disappearance. I could imagine him pining and longing for his return. But, after four years, the guilt and the pain of longing faded and in its place was a quiet introvert who longed to be touched and loved by someone special.
On the other hand, Will is a young man with tons of testosterone. He’s on the Olympic team for the Rio Olympic Games in 2016 and instead of swimming with the rest of his team in a club pool, he prefers to swim in the sea for stamina and strength. He happens to choose Basil’s beach. William is the kind of person who doesn’t give in easily. He’s ambitious and needs to achieve. He hasn’t been lucky in love, in fact he has never really been in love. But the moment he meets Basil, there is an immediate limerence. For Will it’s love at first site.
I wanted to infuse the relationship with drama. Gently. So there are a number of places in the narrative where I drop a couple of dramatic pearls. The South African sardine run is quite a spectacle in the month just before Winter. And with these sardines, come dolphins and sharks and gannets and gulls and a myriad of other creatures to feast on these minute fish. Swimming during the sardine run is a dangerous part time. I had to choose which character would be attacked by a shark. I had to change that scene a couple of times to get the emotion just right. It’s not easy writing romance. There’s a certain subtlety that thriller writing just doesn’t have. A certain passion.
The one thing I had to hold onto as the writer, was the end result of Hope.
And that’s really what Swimmer is all about. Not just love, loss and tragedy, but hope in all it’s nuances.
I chose an unconventional style for the writing of this story. I wrote it in 2nd person past tense. Reason being that the characters leave the reader with a promise, and that promise is a happy ending. My stories don’t usually end happily. One of my shorts involves two men married toeach other and the one is about to leave the other for a younger man. His husband decides that if he can’t have him, no one can. You can imagine the rest. It’s blood curdling. Not all gay love is good love. But Swimmer is more than just about good love. It’s also about love at first site.
I believe in love at first site. Many people will say that LAFS doesn’t work. But it’s not what one doesn’t believe, it’s what one dreams. Dreams are good friends.
Swimmer is more than just a one dimensional love story. It’s more than just the title. I hope you find it endearing, and I hope you will come back and read more of my work.
Basil is not looking for a man. Four years ago, his lover left him without so much as a note. Just like that. Never came home from work. From that fateful day, Basil becomes a recluse, until he meets the Swimmer, a young Olympian who will change his life forever. Swimmer is a beautiful love story of loss, tragic circumstance, and hope. It will leave you applauding for more.
An Excerpt from Swimmer
Hand in hand you trudge along the shore. The sand is thin. The waves cool. He runs and dares you to catch him. He’s fast. It takes all your energy to catch up and make the dive. You’re both on the sand and he’s trying to escape your grip, you’re trying to keep him from running. After a few minutes he gives up, stares into your eyes, and kisses you gently. Your lips tremble god it’s been so long and the sweet wetness in his mouth makes you purr softly. Your lips part for a moment as you stare into his eyes.
‘Jesus, you don’t know what you’re doing to me.’
Instead of answering, he digs into your neck, licking the salt off your tanned skin, sucking your ear, your eyes and finally finding your lips again. This time your tongue digs deep, teeth biting, touching, slamming against each other. You’re both breathless and suddenly you come up for air. Your hands explore his perfect body, every ridge, every bulge, every muscle belongs to you. He’s on top of you. Grinding his cock over yours. Moving delicately across your groin. You don’t want him to stop. You cry out in ecstasy as your cock becomes engorged with blood and you can’t stop yourself. It’s been too fucking long and even though you try to stop him from grinding his cock against yours, he fights you.
‘Jesus. I want you so much, Baz,’ he whispers. ‘I want you to come in your pants. I know you want to. I want you to.’
‘Fuck! Oh, fuck! Oh Fuck Will!’ You cry and your eyes water over as your semen explodes and all you can hear is Will’s voice, ‘Yes. Yes. Fuck. Yes.’
And then the grinding stops. Will collapses onto you, holding your arms above your head.
‘That was so fucking amazing,’ he says.
For a moment there is only the waves crashing against the shore.
‘I can’t believe that you made me cum in my jeans.’
‘I can’t believe that I came in my costume,’ he says, smiling, then laughing. And suddenly you’re both laughing and rolling together in the sand.
‘You’re just amazing. I’ve never done that with anyone,’ you say.
About Louis J Harris
Louis’ first book, Revival, published in 2006 by the South African Short Story Publishing Association, introduced South Africa to her first Gay Literary detective, Rain Godart. He now self publishes his M/M Romance stories under the Coooldudes Publishing banner, a publishing company started up to distribute his own works. in 2008 he won the Marion Scher award for writing, and heads up the editing program for gayauthors.org. He is also an affiliate member of PEG (Professional Editing Group) of South Africa. He has a full time job as a despatch manager and at night turns into a wordsmith almost magically. He currently edits for many writers abroad, and also acts as a literary agent for many of his clients. He lives in Germiston, South Africa, 6000 feet above sea level where no Tsunami can touch him or his family. He is married to his best friend, has a son, and two damned naughty Yorkshire Terriers named Bobby and Caesar.
Louis is giving away THREE copies of Swimmer! The giveaway starts now and ends September 9, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. To enter, just click the link below!
Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway, except to verify your Rafflecopter entry.
Don’t forget to check out Jen’s review of Swimmer to see what she thought of it!