by Geoffrey Knight
Welcome to our strange new world. As of writing this post, most of us are in isolation. Most of us have stopped venturing outside altogether and some of us are even in forced lockdown, unable to leave our homes at all.
This kind of isolation is going to cause mood swings.
We’re going to have our good days and bad days, we’re going to get frustrated and anxious, and at other times we’re going to look for something to help cheer us up.
I know as a writer I write where my mood takes me. Sometimes I’ll be in the mood to write something easy and fun and I’ll throw myself into an adventure story, full of over-the-top action sequences and impossible escapes. Sometimes I’ll be in the mood to write a thriller full of twists and turns and nasty villains. Sometimes I’ll be in the mood for a good old-fashioned mystery that needs solving. Sometimes I’ll be in the mood for a laugh and I’ll write a rom-com and pack it with as much snarky dialogue as I can muster. And sometimes I’m in the mood for something steamy and I’ll write a sexy romance, trying my damnedest to fill it with as much off-the-charts chemistry as I can.
The result is a back catalogue that is full of my mood swings. But the great thing about that is, I pretty much have a book to suit whatever mood you’re in.
So I thought I’d dedicate this guest blog post to five books of mine that suit a different mood, depending on what takes your fancy.
1. IN THE MOOD FOR SOMETHING SEXY?
I’ll start with my new book The Pathfinders which is the whole reason I’m here today. When I want to write something steamy, I’ll often dive into something a little taboo. I find taboo books instantly sexy simply because of the risqué nature of them. Taboo relationships demand characters to take a chance, to step out of their comfort zone to fulfil their desire, and that automatically raises the sexual stakes in the story. Having said that, I strive to write more than just porn-without-plot. While the sexual stakes are higher in a taboo book, so too are the emotional and psychological stakes. There’s a lot to unpack in a taboo book, so I hope you give The Pathfinders a go and take the journey with Jack and Hux, two best friends and cousins who need to find their path together.
2. IN THE MOOD FOR A GOOD LAUGH?
I think I’m going to be writing a lot more comedy in the coming months. Laughter is one of the most important things we need right now to help cheer us up and get us through this. The book I’m writing at the moment is a new rom-com, but if you want to read one of my back-catalogue rom-coms then perhaps give The Billionaire’s Boyfriend a go. It’s the story of Matt, a flower-delivery guy who inadvertently ends up saving the life of Calvin Croft, a lonely billionaire in need of finding someone down to earth to love. Hilarity and romance are sure to ensue!
3. IN THE MOOD FOR ADVENTURE?
My very first foray into gay fiction was my adventure novel The Cross of Sins, the first in my Fathom’s Five series. The Cross of Sins was best described by one reviewer as “Gay Raiders of the Lost DaVinci Code” which sums it up perfectly. My aim was to create an action-packed adventure in the vein of Indiana Jones or James Bond (I’m a big fan of both) except I wanted my heroes to be gay. And so Fathom’s Five was born, a team of five gay adventure-seekers on the hunt for relics and treasure around the globe. It’s fun, it’s unapologetically over-the-top and my heroes always get their man in the end… in more ways than one!
4. IN THE MOOD FOR MYSTERY?
One of my favorite ever character creations is my 1920’s gumshoe Buck Baxter, a private detective who’s tough-guy exterior hides a man who desperately wants to find real love in a world of prohibition, gangsters and nior-ish mysteries. I utterly adore Buck and his first mystery Buck Baxter, Love Detective where—with the help of a zany cast of support characters—Buck learns more about himself than he expects as he unravels a mystery that reaches deep into his own past. With Buck, it was my quest to inject as much humor into his story as I could to hopefully bring you something that’s as funny as it is compelling.
5. IN THE MOOD FOR DARK THRILLS?
Sometimes all I want to do is write a book that’s as dark and gripping as I can create, and Harm’s Way is exactly that. It’s the story of a Zach Taylor, a successful businessman who’s very in-control world falls apart when he learns his biological father was in fact a notorious serial killer. He begins to question whether such darkness flows in his own veins when his biggest client turns up dead. At the same time he begins to fall in love with a mysterious stranger who could be his savior or his downfall. It’s a tale full of twists and turns and the climax is one of my all-time favorites!
So there you have it, five of my books that I hope will entertain you no matter what mood you’re in as we stay locked in our homes in search of something to keep us sane in these insane times.
About The Pathfinders
Hell, I knew the divorce from Sophie would break my heart, but I had no idea how lost and lonely I would feel once she was gone. Everything ended amicably, almost too peacefully, but now I’m facing a whole new chapter of my life. The only problem is, I don’t know what that chapters holds, or if anyone will ever be there to catch me if I fall again.
My only savior right now is my cousin and best friend Hux. We’ve known each other just about our whole lives, and his invitation up to the woods to help him rebuild the old cabin by Pathfinders Lake could be the one thing I need to figure out what plans the universe has in store for me… and the path I need to find.
Hell, I knew Jack’s divorce from Sophie would break his heart, but I had no idea it would bring to the surface all the yearning and pain and hopelessness I’ve felt over the years. The fact is, Jack’s the one and only person I ever want to spend the rest of my life with. But how do you tell your best friend—your cousin—how you truly feel?
I know I need to help him through the dark days following his divorce, but will I be able to keep myself from betraying all his trust by letting my true feelings show? Will inviting him up to the woods to help me rebuild the old cabin by Pathfinders Lake be the end of our relationship? Or will we finally find our very own path in this world together?
Available at: Amazon
An Excerpt from The Pathfinders
OH. My. Fuck.
Jack was gonna strip. He was seriously gonna strip and go skinny-dipping, right there, right then. I knew that look on his face.
“Ah… Jack? What are you doing?”
“What does it look like I’m doing?”
“It looks like you’re about to get naked.”
“Finish your beer and grab another,” he told me. “I’m in the mood to feel young and daring again. Like the old days at the quarry. I wanna feel free again, Hux. Don’t you?”
I chugged down the rest of another bottle in one gulp, watching as his shirt came off, revealing that toned, smooth torso of his.
“You seriously wanna go skinny-dipping?”
He unraveled the bandage around his hand. He unbuttoned his shorts, then unzipped them. “Why not?”
He dropped his shorts to the jetty boards and stepped out of them. Then, sliding his thumbs under the waistband of his briefs at the hips, he pushed his underwear down the length of his strong legs, kicked them out from under his feet, and stood upright in all his naked glory.
I stared up at him, trying to keep my mouth shut, my eyes close to watering as I marveled at his perfect form, his handsome face smiling somewhat nervously back down at me. His muscles were white in the bright sunlight. His nipples were hard even though the air was hot and still. His cock, the one I had tried so many times not to stare at, was flaccid and thick, but I could see it was gaining length with each passing moment that I stared at it.
I wondered whether I was allowed to stare at it, now that I had come out.
Or whether it was completely off limits forever.
As if to answer my question, Jack said, “It’s okay, you can look at it. I don’t mind. In fact, I think I kinda like it. I’m a single man now. So are you. We’re already stripped bare. What do clothes matter now?”
God, he shrugged so casually I could have kissed him.
Before I had a chance, Jack launched himself off the jetty and dived into the lake.
My heart was a thunderstorm of excitement.
Of panic when he didn’t surface after a few moments.
Suddenly he broke through the water and flicked his black hair out of his eyes, and with that enticing grin of his he said, “Well? Are you coming in?”
I sucked in a breath. “I would, but I’m kinda… you know.”
Jack just laughed. “Hard again?”
I nodded almost guiltily, but Jack just responded with, “I’d be insulted if you weren’t, knowing what I know now. So, are you coming in or what?”
He splashed me with water and drenched my shirt and shorts. He seemed determined to get me wet, either in or out of clothes.
“Okay, okay. Calm down, Flipper.”
He made a dolphin noise then turned and dipped under the water, the moons of his bare ass briefly breaking the surface before he submerged.
“You fucking tease,” I muttered to myself as I watched his air bubbles leave a trail through the water, heading away from me. “You have no idea what you’re doing to me.”
Or did he?
He surfaced again and called out once more, “Come on!” before breast-stroking his way to the middle of the lake.
I took a deep breath and stood from the edge of the jetty. I hesitated a moment longer, enough to make me try and imagine what would happen next. Naturally one of the many fantasies I’d kept buried deep my entire life began playing in my head.
The cool, shimmering water.
The movement of our feet treading water to keep us afloat.
The kiss I would suddenly steal, wet and tender.
And his reaction?
“Just keep your shit together,” I warned myself quietly. “He’s trying to prove that things are still normal between us. Don’t fuck it up.”
With another breath I peeled my T-shirt off and began to unzip my shorts. The bulge in my crotch was impossible to hide so there was no point trying. All I could do was act like it was no big deal. Like everything was still normal between us, right?
Anxiously I pushed my shorts down to my ankles and stepped out of them.
As I did, my enormous hard-on slapped up against my hairy belly.
“Woah,” called Jack from the lake. “You really do need to keep a leash on that thing, don’t ya.”
I felt myself blush, but I knew there was no malice in his remark. Hell, he was just using humor to deal with the situation, to make it feel like this was no biggie, excuse the pun. After all, he would have made the same joke before he knew I was gay, so why hold back from using it now?
“Jealous much,” I joked back. “Envy won’t make yours any bigger, you know.”
Yes, everything was just as it had always been.
At least that was the line we were both trying to walk. We sounded like teenagers unable to face the situation with any amount of seriousness. We relied on wisecracks to avoid my coming out turning our friendship into a train wreck. We chose levity over gravity, as men often do. Was I truly expecting anything else?
I wondered if he had detected the overcompensation in my words. I wondered if he knew he was trying too hard to overcompensate too. Or whether he was convinced by his own denial that me being gay changed nothing.
I honestly didn’t know what he was thinking.
I wasn’t sure he even knew himself.
All I knew was, I couldn’t stand there a moment longer thinking about it.
Quickly I dived into the lake, swimming as far as I could under the water before breaking the surface and freestyling toward him. I stopped swimming and started treading water a short distance from him. I wouldn’t allow myself to get any closer.
“Okay, so you win. I’m wet. I’m naked. We’re skinny-dipping. Happy now?” I asked.
It was Jack who paddled closer to me, stopping within a few feet of me. Our arms swished the water and my fingers accidentally brushed his forearm. I felt my hard dick flinch. I tried to glance down, to see if my cock was noticeable through the water. The lake was crisp and clear and the shape of my dick rippled under the waves, unmistakeably hard.
But then again, so was Jack’s.
Water splashed into my mouth. I swallowed some of it and coughed up the rest, quickly looking up before I got caught eyeing Jack’s hard-on.
It was too late.
“Yes, I’m happy now,” he said, answering my question. “See? Not threatened. Nothing’s changed. Just like the old days.”
Playfully he lunged at me in the water and pushed me under. I got a breath of air just before disappearing under the surface, then wrestled my way out of his grip. For a moment I was there, submerged and directly facing his distinctly erect penis.
I couldn’t take it anymore.
I broke the surface with a splash, sucked in a lungful of air and said, “Okay, wait. Stop. I have to say something.”
Jack was about to splash me again but he saw the troubled look on my face and stopped. “Hux? What’s the matter?”
“This,” I said, gesturing to the two of us. “This is the matter. Us pretending that nothing’s changed when in fact a lot has changed. Jack, I just told you I’m gay. I know it’s still the same old me, but that doesn’t mean I want to shrug off that fact that the two of us should maybe try to deal with who I am now. I can finally be myself around you. I don’t want to keep pretending to be someone when you’re only seeing half the man I am. I want you to know all of me.”
For a moment I almost kept going. I almost blurted out how much I loved him, how I had been in love with him since the day we met. But I slammed the door on that fast. Coming out to him was already a big deal and he was trying to deal with it as best he could. He didn’t need me to bury him in an avalanche of secrets and revelations.
And so I held it in.
We treaded water for a few moments longer, just looking at one another.
Then quietly Jack said, “I do wanna know all of you, Hux.” He paused and added, “But that’s not all I want. There’s something else.”
“What is it?”
“I want you to kiss me.”
I creased my brow and squinted my eyes at him, as though the words I’d heard couldn’t possibly be the same words he just said. “What did you say?”
It took him a while to repeat it, as though he was considering backing out and changing his words to something else. But he didn’t. “I said I want you to kiss me. Will you kiss me?”
I kinda gave a half-smile of disbelief. My face didn’t know what it wanted to do. “What are you saying? Are you saying now that I’m out you’re feeling all… I dunno… gay curious? I think you’ve had one too many beers. Are you drunk?”
Jack shrugged and his arms made angel-wing movements through the water. He looked more beautiful to me in that confused moment than ever before. I had no idea why I insisted on asking questions and delaying something I’d dreamt of almost my entire life. Maybe I was having trouble accepting that what was happening was indeed real and not another fantasy. Maybe now that my wish might finally come true, I was petrified of what consequences it might hold. Or maybe I was holding back, terrified he was about to burst out laughing at any second and tell me he was just joking. My heart couldn’t have survived that kind of taunting and rejection.
But Jack didn’t laugh.
His gaze didn’t flinch, and neither did the earnest expression on his face. “I’m not drunk. Well, not that drunk. But maybe I am a little… I dunno… gay curious, maybe? I don’t really know. I don’t know what I want anymore. I don’t really know who I am. I’ve been with Sophie for so long, I’m not sure who I’ve grown into. Part of me doesn’t even want to find out.” He swam closer to me then and added, “But part of me does.”
My heart was a drummer with delusions of grandeur. My stomach was a sheet in a washing machine, twisting itself into knots. I didn’t know what to say other than, “You want a kiss?”
Jack paused. Then nodded. “I do. But not here. Take me inside. Take me to your bed.”
About Geoffrey Knight
Geoffrey Knight is the author of more than 25 gay fiction novels, novellas and short stories, ranging in genre from gay adventure, gay romance, gay suspense and gay comedies. He is the recipient of two Rainbow Awards including Best Mystery Winner and Best Overall Gay Fiction Runner-up. His work has been featured in several anthologies including Best Gay Erotica 2013, and he appeared as Guest of Honor at the inaugural Rainbow Con in Florida, 2014.
Geoffrey has worked in advertising, politics and journalism, but nothing is as fun as telling stories. He lives with his partner, their young daughter and their small furry family in a rambling old house in North Queensland, Australia, where the paint is fraying and life is good.
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