Black Friday is here and we’re discussing the season with Kate’s MacArthur Dugan from her novella Dream Catcher which can be found in the Nightshift anthology.
“Dream Catcher” by Kate Douglas: She comes to him at night in dreams of carnal pleasure. Real or imagined, Mac doesn’t know and doesn’t care. For his body throbs with a need that only his mystery lover can satisfy…”Taken Between” by Crystal Jordan: Kira lives to protect her queen, but the king’s brother is the one who commands her desire. She longs for him with a feral sexuality and ferocious passion she can barely control…”The Right Number” by Lynn LaFleur: Jay may have dialled the wrong number but the right woman answers. She is the mate he’s been looking for all his life. And when he hears the sexy purr of her voice, it arouses the hungry wolf inside…
Make sure you stick around to the end. We’ll be giving away a copy of the Nightshift anthology.
I tend to totally immerse myself in an ongoing series, which can be nerve-wracking when I’m getting to know an entirely new set of characters. I mean, let’s face it—I write for Kensington’s Aphrodisia line, which means no boundaries, no limits, and a lot of very hot sex. It’s one thing after you’ve been writing those stories for a while, and another altogether when you’re just starting out and digging into the truly intimate, “up close and personal” details on guys you barely know.
I’m not the kind of girl who just leaps into bed with the first sexy hero who shows up on my screen, so the first thing I do is sit down with my heroes and ask them about themselves—and that’s what I did with MacArthur Dugan, my hero from Dream Catcher, the novella in the Nightshift anthology that introduces my new Dream Catchers series.
So, I’m going to turn this over to Mac, who was trying to explain his relationship with Zianne. She’s an absolutely beautiful woman—in her human form. Except she’s not human. Zianne is an alien—a Nyrian, a creature whose natural form is pure energy, and a rather stunning column of blue light.
“So,” Mac says, leaning back in his chair and sipping a from a shot glass filled to the brim with Jack Daniels, “it’s 1992, the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, and Zianne’s reading the local newspaper and she sees all these ads. Tons of ads for Black Friday specials the day after Thanksgiving, and of course she wonders what the hell Black Friday is. I was still trying to explain Thanksgiving, which wasn’t easy because her sympathies are all with the bird. Anyway, I try to explain, but there’s no way to describe the chaos of everyone trying to get in on the big sales that officially launch the Christmas shopping season.”
“Zianne says, ‘Mac. I want to go. You need to take me to one of these sales. It’s a good way to learn about human behavior.’”
“‘Yeah, right,’” I’m thinking. “Human behavior at its worst. So I call Dink—he’s my best buddy and he and Zianne and I sort of have a thing going—a threesome, if you want the truth, though Zianne prefers the term ‘ménage.’ Says it sounds sexier. Like we need sexier?”
Grinning about whatever he’s thinking Mac takes another sip of the Jack. I looked at my watch. It was pretty early in the day for hard liquor, but you know how it goes—it’s got to be cocktail time somewhere.
“So, I decide the mall’s out. Too big, too overwhelming, too many chances for trouble. There’s a Kmart not far from my apartment and it’s supposed to open at six in the morning, so Dink and Zianne and I crawl out of bed—and yeah, it was the same bed, okay?—get dressed and head for Kmart before the sun’s even thinking about coming up.
“Dink was not happy. He’s definitely not a morning person, but Zianne was all decked out in human form with a snappy outfit and ready to go before we’d even finished our coffee. Next thing I know, we’re jammed into the middle of a crush of anxious women ready to start their Christmas shopping, and I’m looking over Zianne’s head at Dink, who’s looking a little green around the gills. Neither one of us likes crowds—I’m a computer geek and Dink’s a newbie newscaster for a station in the Bay Area—and Zianne’s never been in a situation like this in her life, only I didn’t realize just how nervous all the jostling was making her.
“Now remember, this was in 1992. Kmart used to have these things called Blue Light Specials, but they’d ended them the year before. I think they’re doing them again—not sure—but not in 1992. And Zianne’s a Nyrian…remember the tower of blue energy? Yep…you’re laughing. You can see where this is going, right?”
At this point, Mac chuckled softly, staring into his almost empty glass. I was really wishing I could read his mind about now, but his shields were up and his thoughts blocked.
“So, this skinny little pimply-faced clerk comes to the door with the keys and unlocks it. He doesn’t even have time to get out of the way before the crowd surges through and Dink, Zianne and I are caught in the middle. I don’t think Zianne’s feet were even touching the floor, and I’ve got one of her arms and Dink’s got the other and we’re sort of swept through the doors. I can see the kid, the one who opened the place up, and he’s smashed back against the wall behind the door, trying not to get crushed by the crowd and it’s absolutely nuts.
“And that’s when Zianne lost it. She couldn’t hold onto her human form—the crush of bodies, the excitement, the absolute greed of all those shoppers hunting for a bargain was too much.”
At this point, he’s laughing out loud and I can’t stand it. “So what happened, Mac? Don’t leave me hanging here!”
“She dematerialized.” He snorted, he’s laughing so hard.
“Dematerialized. Lost track of her human form and reverted to her native shape, which is a tower of energy. Blue energy. In Kmart. With a gazillion people still expecting to see a Blue Light Special.”
“Oh.” I shook my head, not really sure I wanted to go there.
“Oh is right.” He grabbed a handkerchief and wiped his streaming eyes and then took a couple of deep breaths so he could talk again. “She flashed blue in the sporting goods section, and everyone raced over there. She flipped out and flashed in women’s lingerie, and then in the toy department. Employees were scrambling, trying to explain that there weren’t any Blue Light Specials, customers were losing it, and Dink and I were trying to keep up with Zianne, only we’re both in hysterics and she’s zapping from one place to another and of course everyone is converging wherever she goes, and…”
At this point, he was beyond speech. I know he got her out of there—he finally told me she’d zapped herself inside him to hide, which made his eyes sort of sparkly and weird, but they were able to get out of the store without getting caught. And luckily her energy levels were so high that she blew out the security cameras, or it could have been difficult to explain.
Kmart reinstated their Blue Light Specials a couple of years later. Makes me wonder if Zianne had anything to do with that?
But it’s conversations like this that let me get inside my characters’ heads. Most of the time. I’m not sure I learned all that much about Mac, but I’ve got another bottle of Jack around here somewhere, and I imagine I’ll get him to talk.
So, what’s your take on Black Friday? Do you brave the crowds? I’ve never done it—we live in a little town up in the mountains with a gas station and a post office and not much else, so I’ll just watch it all on the evening news. But if you go, I’d love to hear your experiences!
Happy Holidays, stay safe, and remember to take time to read a good book!
Meet Kate Douglas!
Kate Douglas is the lead author for Kensington’s erotic romance line, Aphrodisia. Her WOLF TALES series pushes all the boundaries and her books continue to go into extra print runs as more readers discover that, at least once in awhile, those boundaries need to be pushed. She also has titles with Ellora’s Cave and Changeling Press.
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Want to purchase Kate’s novel?
- Demonfire at Amazon | Book Depository
- Hellfire at Amazon | Book Depository
- Starfire at Amazon | Book Depository
- Crystalfire at Amazon
Demon Slayer Bundle: Starfire / Demonfire / Hellfire at Amazon
Nocturnal at Amazon | Book Depository
Nightshift at Amazon | Book Depository
Wolf Tales 9 at Amazon | Book Depository
Wolf Tales 10 at Amazon | Book Depository
Wolf Tales 11 at Amazon | Book Depository
Wolf Tales 12 at Amazon | Book Depository
Thank you Kate for taking part in Literary Escapism’s Black Friday!
Contest Time! Kate is giving away a copy of the Nightshift anthology. To enter, all you have to do is answer this one question: What’s your take on Black Friday? Do you brave the crowds? Remember, you must answer the question in order to be entered.
Even though I’m not giving the additional entries any more, you can still help support the author by sharing their article, and this contest, on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, or anywhere you can. After all, the more people who are aware of this fabulous author ensures we get more fabulous stories.
The winner must post a review of the novel someplace. Whether it is on their own blog, Amazon, GoodReads, LibraryThing or wherever, it doesn’t matter. Just help get the word out.
All Black Friday contests will remain open until December 31st at which time I’ll determine the winner with help from the snazzy new plug-in I have. Have you checked out the other Black Friday contests yet? Check out the Master List to see all the Black Friday giveaways
I have not been contacting winners, so you will need to check back to see if you’ve won.
Thanks, guys–I really love all the great responses I’m getting, and Kathryn, the minute I got the request to do a short story about Black Friday, that popped into my head. What’s really funny is that Dream Catcher takes place in 1992, and Kmart really DID stop their blue light specials the year before!
Didn’t go out this year- went to the Muppet Movie instead. I am scarred from my childhood, standing outside Wilmington Dry Goods at 6 am as they play the National anthem. When they open the doors it’s just as you described. Tugs- of- war ensued, and mad scrambles for bargains. I think the anthem was supposed to calm us down, but it was more like an ode to capitalism, and I think someone shouted “Play ball!” as the crowd surged through the doors.
Julie, that would scare me more than clowns!
BEING MARRIED TO SCROOGE? LOL I STAY HOME AND READ BOOKS!!
Nope…I do not get up early and I still go to work and then go home and read or watch a movie
I live for Black Friday. The best newpaper of the year is the one on Thanksgiving day with all those flyers in all those pretty colors and low prices. This year my son requested to attend with me (Yes, I was really surprised). We stood in line for hours and got him a 32″ flat screen tv for $188 and then we hit GameStop for a few games for his xbox. Yes, I do realize Black Friday was about him but he had fun. I sleep about five hours and then his sister and I hit the stores. Oh, Black Friday I am waiting for you again already!!!!
we dont really have black friday in canada.. and no, i dont brave it if i can avoid it!
There is NOTHING that I want or need that badly, so I don’t brave the Black Friday crowds. The thought of all those wacko people squeezed into one place, all looking for the same bargains, makes me feel a little sick. And scared. Plus, you have to deal with all the crazy drivers scrambling to get from store to store, and that’s scary too. This year I saw people camping out in front of Best Buy on Wednesday! No sir, not me.
Like Alaina said, we don’t really do Black Friday in Canada but I did take part in some online sales. I don’t think I’d brave the crowds. The stories you hear are just too insane!
Thanks for this giveaway!
when I am in the States the Black Friday is a must do for me. I know I am a little crazy.
I have never gone out on Black Friday- I just sleep in and hear about the madness later. I would rather leisurely go through racks and racks at a thrift store then get elbowed in the face on Black Friday.
I usually do go shopping on Black Friday but I didn’t this year. The crowds don’t bother me. I expect to be nearly run over if I’m crazy enough to go out on that day.
I didn’t go out on Black Friday weekend, did some cyber shopping. But I was out after that one day & the crowds & lines really got to me – had to leave the store.
I’m so sorry you lost your Mother; I lost my Dad a few years ago at the age of 90 too. It’s difficult to watch our parents decline and fade.
This year, I did most of my shopping online. When my kids were babies and they had alot of deals on toys, I went out and stood in line waiting for them to open the doors. I used to enjoy being in all the commotion and craziness! Now, I have no desire to be part of it. The people are rude and nasty and they don’t have anything on sale that I absolutely need! Thank you for the giveaway! Happy Holidays!
When I lived in Wyoming, I loved Black Friday! Our town only had about 16,000 people and most of them left to go to Salt Lake for the Black Friday. It was always a tradition with my mom and I, so when I moved to California, I couldn’t wait to take part! I mean really…so many more stores than my mall back home had and levels!! There are levels in the malls here. Needless to say, my first and only Black Friday in California traumatized me so much I haven’t gone out on that day in 13 years. If I could have dematerialized into energy, I probably would have done the same thing as Zianne. The crowds and crazy people…and wow, how crazy people are during those times. So now I do my shopping online and watch the news for those crazy stories.
I’m an online-only kind of girl when it comes to huge sale days like Black Friday and Boxing Day.
Thanks for the giveaway!
Black Friday has its pros & its come, but I usually don’t take advantage of it even though it would probably be a good idea to brave the crowds & go see what I can find for family & friends for Christmas
I hate Black Friday crowds, so I do my shopping on line that day.
I have really enjoyed everyone’s comments, and I have to admit, I tend to agree with those of you who avoid the crowds on that particular day! I was really proud of myself this year for actually going to a mall during the holidays–generally I try and limit a lot of my shopping to small independent stores, not the big ones. This year all the grandkids got gift certificates to the local indie bookstore along with other “play” things.
It’s a brand new year this morning–I want to wish all of you the very best in 2012! Thanks again for stopping by and reading my story, and thanks to all at Literary Escapism for allowing me to guest on the blog.