Phillip Jorgensen tried to live the straight life and ended up divorced. But he wouldn’t trade his two kids, Jacob and Samantha, for the world. His ex-wife has kidnapped them and he’s been searching for them for six long years. But he’s not giving up—never, not for anything. His twin brother has encouraged him to start living again, but how is he going to find romance with all his baggage?
When he meets Vance Pierce at the new gym, Phillip sees a chance to find some happiness.
Phillip has to explain the whole sordid mess to Vance and pray that he understands that he’ll never stop looking for his children. That’s easier said than done. Telling Vance might be risky. Is their connection strong enough to convince Vance to stay? Or will he think that Phillip is too damaged to love? This is Phillip’s chance at the life he never thought he could have. But is it possible?
He was debating the merits of getting back in his truck and driving home when a movement drew his gaze. Phillip watched as a good-looking blond emerged from the doorway he assumed led to the locker room.
He looked his fill. He wasn’t quite sure if he was in the market, but even if he were, he wouldn’t approach the guy. His limited experience with men had shown him most guys who had a body that defined were more interested in looks than personality. If he ever settled down, he wanted someone who could hold a conversation—not just someone who looked good. Phillip cringed. He’d just judged the guy based solely on his looks. For all he knew, the guy was a professor or something similar. Just because someone looked good didn’t mean that was all there was to them. He knew better than that. A hand landing on his shoulder pulled him away from his self-recrimination and back to the present.
“See something you like?”
Phillip glanced down to find Trevor standing by his side, a knowing grin spread across his youthful face. “It might be just what I’m looking for.”
He took inventory of the man standing next to him. Trevor was short. His head barely reached the shoulder of Phillip’s six-foot-four frame. It wasn’t the only thing different about the guy either. They were like night and day.
Phillip admitted, to himself at least, that he’d lost some of his muscle definition since quitting the gym. He’d never felt it more than while standing next to Trevor. Despite Trevor’s slim build, Phillip could see the flex and bunch of well-conditioned muscles with every movement.
Interview with Renee:
Tell us about the story. Where did you get the inspiration for it? How long did it take you to write it? Do you share any traits or likes/ dislikes with your characters? Where is your story set? A fictional place or somewhere you’ve visited/ lived? So many times you hear about a non-custodial parent kidnapping their kids. Usually it’s the mom that’s gained custody, but I wanted to do the opposite of that. I wanted the dad to gain custody and have it be the mother that took the kids away. I wanted the story to focus not just on the romance between the two main characters, but also on the search for Phillip’s kids. I first wrote No More Hiding in 2009, and it wasn’t until 2014 that I finally sat down and did the in-depth revision that it needed.
I would say I’m most like Marissa, Robert’s wife, in personality. She’s spunky, but very caring towards those that she cares about.
As for the setting. It’s set in the US, but rather than risk including somewhere that I don’t know much about, the actual setting is fictional. The places in it don’t exist, at least to my knowledge.
When you write, do you map out the story or go where your characters lead? I generally have an idea of where the story is going to go, but rarely do I write out an outline. Too many times, my characters take over the story and I just follow where they lead. As long as I get in the ending I planned and a few scenes that I wanted to include, I’m happy.
How long have you been writing? I started writing in junior high school. A story about a killer mountain lion. My English teacher enjoyed it and encouraged me to continue. I stopped for a while but started writing again in my early 20’s, so probably about 10 years.
Any current projects you want to tell us about? Maybe a hint or two? Currently, I’m working on revising a paranormal story. Damian is held captive and is rescued by Vik, a vampire, and his warriors. He has a hard time trusting Vik, or anyone in his clan, and it causes some complicated issues that they have to work through.
What is your favorite genre to read and write? That’s a tough one. I dabble in multiple genres for both reading and writing. To read: I think it’s a toss-up being paranormal and contemporary. To write: I primarily write paranormal and contemporary. Since I have more contemporary stories, that is probably what I lean towards most. (That’s not to say I don’t have over a dozen stories in process, many of them are paranormal)
Are we more likely to catch you reading a paperback book, hardcover book, or on an e-reader? I have a ton of paperback books, but lately I take my iPad with me everywhere if I think I’m going to have a little time to read. I’ve got quite a few books on there, some that I haven’t read yet and some that I re-read multiple times.
What is your idea of a perfect day? My perfect day would be a day spent on the mountain camping with my husband and dog. We’d take the four-wheelers and go for a ride (with the camera) and hopefully find some stuff worth photographing. Then maybe do a little fishing. I’d wrap up the day around a campfire, roasting hotdogs for dinner and marshmallows for dessert. Then maybe a little reading before bed.
You’re stranded on a desert island. What are the three things you can’t live without? I’m going to assume my husband is with me. After necessities, I’d want something to write with (since I’ll probably have a lot of time), probably my pets (they offer both protection and companionship), and migraine meds since I suffer from migraines a lot.
Favorite food? What will we absolutely never see you eat? As far as a favorite food, that’s a bit hard to decide. I do know that I fix shepherd’s pie quite often and I absolutely love cheesecake. I’ve never liked Brussel sprouts and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
What is your preference? Coffee, tea, or soda? I used to live by soda, Dr. Pepper in particular. In May I gave up all soda and now I only drink water flavored with Crystal Light.
Renee Stevens first started writing in her teens but didn’t get serious about being an author until her mid-twenties. Since then she’s written a number of contemporary stories, as well as delved into the paranormal. When not writing, or spending time in the outdoors, Renee can usually be found working on GayAuthors.org in her capacity of admin and Anthology Coordinator.
Renee resides in Wyoming with her wonderfully supportive husband and a menagerie of four-legged critters. Making the most of the nearly constant negative temperatures and mounds of snow, Renee spends much of the winter months in hibernation with her laptop, the voices in her head keeping her company while her husband works. When she needs a break from writing, Renee takes to the sewing machine to design, and make, beautiful quilts.
When the snow finally disappears, usually around May or June, Renee can be found in the great-outdoors. She spends her time on the mountain, at the lake, and just anywhere that she can do some camping, take some photos, and ride the four-wheelers with her hubby. Once back at home, it’s back to writing.