Fear and Trust
by Joseph Lance Tonlet
Eighteen months ago I embarked on a thrilling new journey. The goal of this journey? Write a good book.
I’d set this goal after years of dreaming about it—of longing for it. I’d also set this goal with no practical novel writing experience. Sure, I’d taken the same mandatory English classes in high school and college that most folks do, but there wasn’t a single thing in my background which told me I could do this.
What took me so long to do it? Fear. Plain and simple. However, I desperately pushed the apprehension to the back of my mind as I sat in front of my MacBook and began to type. Once I’d mustered the courage to actually to start, the words just seemed to flow from my fingers and onto the page. It was almost magical, and in the span of 4 weeks I’d written 120,000 words.
The next difficult step came after I’d typed that final period and called the book’s first draft done. The difficult step to which I refer?Letting other people actually read it. That terrified the ever-living-fuck out of me. Sure, I was worried whether or not I’d done a good job. But, beyond that was the concern of what would people think—it’s an erotic-romance D/s novel after all. It’s what my fervently religious grandmother would have deemed smut.
Each of us holds that concern, to some extent, don’t we? The fear that we’ll be judged, the fear that we’ll be seen as weird or freaky, the fear that we’ll be looked at as deviants. But, then it hit me, being gay, I’ve been seen as a deviant most of my life…why not add a bit more ‘strange’ to the mix? *smile*
I’d achieved the first part of the goal; I’d written Grif’s Toy. As for the second part—the part about writing a ‘good’ book—I’d only know for sure if I allowed people to read it. Like Grif, our protagonist, I’ve had to bite back my fear many times over the course of this journey and just trust. And, also like Grif, I’m really glad I did! I hope you are as well.
About Grif’s Toy
Grif believes he’ll live his life as a virgin. After all, who would want him? How could anyone find him, a guy who came with less than man-sized equipment, worthy of their love?
What he hadn’t counted on were the two amazing men who would change his life. After entering college, he meets Tate, his fun-loving, roommate. While years later, with Tate now just a memory, Wes, a handsome, rugged ex-marine who runs his own security firm enters his life.
Both men lead Grif through a twisted mesh of pleasure, pain, and denial, as they force him to see his value, despite his size and insecurities.
Don’t forget to check out JustJen’s review of Grif’s Toy to see what she thought of it!
An Excerpt from Grif’s Toy
With a quick kiss he slid away from me and off the bed. Pulling the t-shirt off first and then dropping his shorts he stood resplendently nude. My breath caught as I stared at him.
He walked over to my side of the bed and held out a hand to me. I took it and was pulled to my feet.
With a quick, deep kiss he said, “Grif, just trust that I’ll keep my promise, okay?”
I looked into his kind eyes and saw the small laugh lines around them, the sexy smile and nodded, “I promise to try and remember that, Wes.”
“Then we’re half way there.”
He hooked the hem of my t-shirt in both hands and brought it over my head and off. Looking down at my chest, he mumbled beautiful before his fingers moved to the button of my shorts.
He paused and asked, “I assume you have a jock on?”
“Never leave home without it,” I tried for nonchalance, but failed as my voice cracked.
He looked down and easily popped the button. I grabbed his wrist, but I didn’t pull it away.
“Wes…,” I felt my eyes beginning to tingle, and my throat growing tight, “I’m scared.” My voice was so low and indistinct I was certain he hadn’t even heard me.
He looked up and met my eyes, “Okay, two things, babe; one, fuck you’re so beautiful right now, and that fear in your eyes does crazy things to me, and two, why are you frightened? I gave you my—’
“I’m scared of losing you if you see,” I blurted out.
“Hey…,” he said, as he brushed my hair back from my forehead, “You’ve got your jock on. There’s no way I can see. So put that worry out of your head—and just feel the moment, okay? And, more importantly, you won’t lose me when I do see. There’ll come a time when you’ll believe that too.”
He moved his hands back down to my shorts, slid the zipper open with an amazingly, practiced adeptness, and my shorts fell to the carpet.
About Joseph Lance Tonlet
Joseph is a born and raised Southern Californian—with a twenty-year stint of living in the Midwest. He loves the laid-back lifestyle of San Diego and considers himself lucky to live where people dream of vacationing.
A lifelong reader of m/m fiction, he began his writing career one night sitting at his MacBook and has never looked back. He writes to bring the characters he dreams about to life.