Category Archives: Santa and the Saddler

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayIt’s Teaser Tuesday time again, the blog series where I tantalise you with snippets from works-in-progress, past and upcoming releases, and occasionally let writing buddies play around too.

I am so deep into writing Santa and the Saddler at the moment. Oh, how I adore this book! The hero and heroine are so lovely and I just know they need to be together even though right now it seems as if that’s not going to happen. It will, of course. It’s a romance and in a romance a happy-ever-after is mandatory. That doesn’t mean there won’t be tears along the way though.

I don’t want to make promises, but I’m pretty confident I’ll have this novella finished for you in time for a Christmas release. There are still quite a few chapters to go but I’m starting to glimpse the end and I always write faster when I can see that, and this book is such fun. All I want to do is write it!

Can you tell I’m excited about this story? I am. Really excited, which is why I’m going to share another little snippet today. Obviously the novella is in draft form and this is an unedited piece, so it might be totally different in the finished book or be cut all together.

Enjoy!

 

Late in his shift, when he had a spare moment, Danny picked a couple of packets of nuts from the rack and paid for them along with two bottles of pilsner. He didn’t know if Beth drank beer but she looked like that kind of girl. What she looked like was his kind of girl, and Danny had every plan of making her that. Tonight would be good but he’d take tomorrow. She was tired and distracted and a bloke couldn’t rush these things.

He wanted to though. Badly.

As soon as knock-off came, Danny was out of the Arms and shooting for O’Brien’s.

‘Santa to the rescue,’ he announced when Beth unlocked the door. He held up the beers and nuts. ‘Sustenance.’

She leaned against the jamb with her arms folded. ‘What are you doing here?’

Danny studied Beth’s face, trying to figure out her mood, whether she was pleased or the defensive folded arm act was just that—an act. ‘I’ve come to help?’

He cringed at how the rising inflection made him sound like a girl.

‘Danny, you played cricket today, and you’ve obviously done a shift at the pub.’ She indicated his Santa suit. ‘I’m fine, go home. There’s no point in both of us ending up exhausted. I was planning to finish up soon anyway.’

He shrugged. ‘So I’ll hang around and take you home.’

Beth pinched the bridge of her nose and shook her head. ‘You do realise Santa is meant to come only once a year and not every night?’

‘Ah, but Beth, you should know by now that this Santa never plays by the rules.’

©Cathryn Hein

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Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser TuesdayTime for another tantalising treat thanks to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets from my novels, old, new and in progress, and occasionally let author buddies take over.

Last week I finished tweaking the full-length romance I’ve been working on for most of this year (Rah!). Time to set the manuscript aside and let it stew for a while. I always try to do this if I have the chance. It’s amazing how much easier it is to pick up story and character issues after a break, and better all-round if I can identify and fix them before handing it to my publisher.

Which means I’m now free to work on what I hope will be my Christmas novella—Santa and the Saddler.

I need to get a wriggle on though. While I plan for Santa and the Saddler to be only novella-sized, there are still a lot of words to be written. Plus I need to get it edited, proof-read and formatted, and have a cover designed, preferably all before November. That’s tight!

I do have some rough first draft words though. Here’s a few I can share…

 

Danny tapped his fingers some more. Pretty bad manners to disturb someone this late but he needed to order the browband. Ebs would kill him if he failed to deliver on Christmas Day.

He stopped tapping and opened the ute door. If Saddlery Girl told him to piss off—which she had every right to—he’d cop it on the chin, but if she took the order then it was another thing he could quit worrying about.

He jogged across the road and slowed to a walk. Seeping from under the door was the unmistakable sound of 70s rockers Slade singing Merry Christmas Everybody. As the chorus came up, Slade was joined by another voice, out of tune but belted with gusto. He paused at the window and grinned as he spotted Saddlery Girl at the counter, singing loudly as she flicked through a loose pile of paper. Extracting a sheet, she belted out ‘It’s Christ-maaaaas’ at the top of her voice and disappeared into the rear workshop.

Danny laughed and went to rap on the door, only to stop as a burst of common sense assaulted him. It was quarter to one on a Friday night in a country town and he was a stranger dressed in a Santa suit. This could hardly end well.

©Cathryn Hein

 

In case you don’t know the song referred to above, you’ll find a video here. Slade are awesome. Luuuuurve them!

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Teaser Tuesday!

6 Replies

Teaser TuesdayTime for another tantalising treat thanks to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets from my novels, old, new and in progress, and occasionally let author buddies take over.

Today a couple of paragraphs from a Christmas novella I’ve been working on called Santa and the Saddler. I’m only a couple of chapters in and can’t give it too much attention at the moment because my next full-length rural romance must take priority, but it’s looking to be fun.

The story is set in Levenham, the same as Rocking Horse Hill and Summer and the Groomsman, and introduces a couple of new characters. I’m not sure yet if any of familiar crew will rate a mention but I suspect they’ll sneak in somewhere, even if it’s only for a line or two.

Here’s a little taste of hero Danny Burroughs.

 

The pub was already rocking when he arrived. Thanks to boisterous young singles returning from university or new careers elsewhere to their hometown for Christmas, this time of year it always was. Drawn by the fun atmosphere, plenty of regulars and other assorted locals had sidled in for a drink too, and Danny endured calls of ‘Nice suit!’ and ‘Ho ho ho!’ as he made his way to the bar. He surreptitiously gave those he knew well the finger, the others he just waved off, smiling through gritted teeth.

The publican –  a bit too much into the spirit of things for Danny’s liking – had decided that this year, for the week leading up to Christmas, the staff would dress as Christmas characters. Danny had drawn the short straw and scored Santa. Tall and rangy, with spiky dark hair and blue eyes, Danny was as far from Santa as a bloke could get. Barry, the grey-haired night manager, had fared even worse as Mrs Claus, while Karen Simms, who’d been working at the pub almost as long as Barry, had drawn Frosty the Snowman. The only person who looked good was Lily, one of the casual female bar staff, who instead of appearing ridiculous like him, looked as cute as a button in her elf suit. If Danny’s mate Ben hadn’t already claimed dibs, Danny would have tried for her himself, but the two men had their code and Lily was off limits.

Which meant another Christmas spent single.

©Cathryn Hein

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