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COVER & EXCERPT REVEAL
Technically Married by N.Franko
COMING May, 31st
Their love always sizzled but after a misunderstanding, it suddenly fizzled. What drove them apart might just be what brings them back together again.
Max is a good guy. He’s rich, handsome, smart and normal. Things are getting pretty serious between us but there’s a problem—technically, I’m already married to a starving artist rock star wannabe.
When my former best friend invited me to her celebrity bridal shower, I went mainly out of curiosity. When she asked me to be her maid of honor though, I wanted to run for the hills. If I didn’t need my estranged husband to sign those divorce papers, I actually would have.
Instead of giving me a divorce, he gave me something else. The truth about the ending of our marriage.
Suddenly, my life with Max doesn’t seem so appealing. The rock star I had run from for all those years is suddenly the man who’s awakened something in me—something I thought had died a long time ago. And damnit, it feels frickin’ amazing!
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You know that queasy feeling in your gut that’s like butterflies and fish are wrestling with each other? That’s how I feel every time I look at Jay. I get all hot under my skin and I want to tear my eyeballs out and rip my nails off one by one. I think its the anger and resentment that still lingers. It’s not because I still think he’s a rock star sex God or anything. Really. Shit. This is why we can’t be in the same room with each other.
As soon as Julia broke away from our hug and went to greet him, I ran to the bar and got myself a stiff drink, then headed to the small podium that housed the jazz quartet just in time to hear the bass player’s solo. He was an older man, probably in his late fifties, and played an upright bass like it was going out of style. His fingers danced along the neck, intricately plucking note after note. He grooved with the slight ting ting of the drummer’s cymbal perfectly in time. Man, they were good.
Watching musicians sort of made me nostalgic for my rock star days. I hadn’t picked up an instrument in years and I probably wouldn’t know what to do with a bass guitar anymore. Not that I ever did. That was the beauty of punk music—you don’t actually need to know how to play. As long as you have the balls to get up on stage, scream about something and pluck a few strings, you’re good. I can’t say that I would ever be a musician again but I do miss the freedom to create whatever and whenever I wanted. Corporate life has done alright by me, but it didn’t leave much room for creativity.
“Nice to see you crawled out of your cubicle,” a voice said behind me. Shivers ran up and down my spine like a thousand spiders being set loose. That voice. That deep, drawling voice. Damn it, why did I agree to come?
“Nice to see you crawled out of your trashcan,” I replied. “Would’ve been nice of you to shower, though. I could smell you across the yard.”
“Typical,” the voice spat at me.
“Can you just let me enjoy the music for like five minutes?” To his credit, he shut his pie hole long enough for the bass solo to finish. We both clapped as the band resumed the song. We were the only two who watching them and they smiled at us, appreciative of our attention.
“So, where’s wonder-geek? Or do they prefer the term nerd? I can never get that right,” Jay sneered.
“Look at you making fun of smart, rich guys. You’re so cool,” I drawled. Man, this was seriously getting old. “I’m actually glad you’re here.”
“Oh, really? Geekazoid not doing it for you these days? You need some marital attention?”
“Don’t be gross. I need you to sign the divorce papers. For real, this time.” I was pretty impressed at how steady that came out because I could feel my vocal chords vibrating.
“Oh yeah. Sure. I guess its been long enough. You’ve moved on, I’ve moved on…”
“You’ve moved on?” I don’t know why it came out like I was surprised. Why did I suddenly cared so much? We’ve been estranged for years. I was sort of happy with Max and Jay deserved to be sort of happy with someone too. I guess. I don’t know why the thought of him being with someone else suddenly filled me with blind rage. What was wrong with me?
His lips curled up into a small, sneaky smile. “Her name is Dianna. Why do you care, anyways? You’ve got yourself a nerd-king.”
I took a deep breath and pushed whatever feelings were surfacing back to wherever they came from. “I don’t care. Just sign the papers before you leave, okay?”
“Yes, sir,” he said and saluted me. I rolled my eyes as far as they would go into the back of my head and walked away. There wasn’t a drink stiff enough to drown out how irritating that man could be. I ordered a shot of whiskey from the bartender and headed for the table of food. Maybe stuffing my face with something fried would help block him out.
The table didn’t seem to be missing a single piece of food except the few fried cabbage sticks I ate earlier. I didn’t see anyone else eating either and I was starting to get self-conscious. I mean, Max had taken me to fancy parties with important people before, but even they picked at the mini quiches that always floated around. I guess that’s just life in Hollywood—no one is caught dead eating in public. Whatever. I picked up another one of the fried cabbage things and shoved them in my mouth.
“You should try one of these things,” Jay said from behind me. He was holding up a small, red pepper stuffed with shredded something. It looked good. I wanted one but I didn’t want to give him the satisfaction of enjoying what he suggested.
“What’s wrong with you? Why can’t you leave me alone?”
“What? I’m hungry. I do live off of scraps from a trashcan, after all,” he said. His lips curled into a smug smile as he bit into the pepper. That was all I needed. I felt something snap inside of me and without thinking, I raised my hands and shoved him in the chest. Hard. Really hard. He fell back into the table behind him and crashed onto a large, three-tier caked.
“What the hell?” he yelled and picked up what was left of the top layer of the cake and threw it at me, hitting me right in the face. Icing and butter cream dripped off of me as I stood there stunned.
A moment that felt like an eternity filled the air. The band stopped playing, everyone stopped talking and I’m pretty sure I heard a collective gasp. I stood there, starring at Jay. Anger filled every part of me but then I remembered that I was at a party. Julia’s party. Julia’s bridal shower with a bunch of fancy Hollywood people around. I looked up and there she was, standing by the broken table with her feet surrounded by desserts. I gave her a horrified look and said a silent I’m sorry but she just stood there, stone faced.
MORE IN THE SERIES
Technically Scripted only 99c https://amzn.to/2KrVNkb
He’s a bad boy movie star. She’s just a failed reporter. This assignment was supposed to be temporary. So why does it feel like their love isn’t just scripted?
Between being let go from her job at a small community newspaper and finding her boyfriend cheating, Julia Simmons owed it to herself to have a public meltdown. She just didn’t expect it to be in front of Hollywood’s biggest, most egotistical—and most eligible—movie star Ryan Vexler.
Her photo plastered all over the tabloids were a touch uncalled for, especially now that everyone thinks Julia is Ryan’s girlfriend! Now, Julia is trying to navigate this strange world of Hollywood glitz and glamour because Ryan needs to clean up his public image and Julia is the perfect person to do it.
What Ryan doesn’t know is that Julia is a professional failure. Her music career failed long ago. Her reporting career is in the toilet and now she’s failing as a fake girlfriend because her feelings for this man are very, very real!
If you like your rom coms to be laugh-out-loud with a few twists and turns and a touch of sweetness, then you’ll love N. Franko’s debut novella, Technically Scripted, book one of the Romantic Comedy of Errors.
Start reading the Romantic Comedy of Errors series with Technically Scripted today!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
N. Franko is a reader of all things funny, romantic, magic, scary, dirty or nerdy-basically anything that’s words on a page.
A huge fan of authors like Chuck Palahniuk and Sophie Kinsella, she spent much of her days daydreaming of being an author while failing hard as a reporter and production artist for a small town newspaper before taking the plunge and writing her first book, Technically Scripted.
When she’s not writing, she’s playing drums in a noisy synth-pop band with her rock star husband, annoyingly taking pictures of everything, drinking coffee or watching an obscene amount of television.
This Cover Reveal was hosted by Lexis Infinitum PR
The Good Doctor by Andi Jaxon
Coming February 28th!
I live in the hospital, working 18 hour days. My entire life consists of running from patient to patient until I meet her. The girl that is afraid of her own shadow. She starts out as a patient, but thoughts of her consume me. One phone call leads to me meeting her amazing little girl which changes everything. With the help of my new partner in crime, I set out to try and save her from a life of fear. Can she learn to trust me with her life and both their hearts?
**** TRIGGER WARNING: contains mention of physical and emotional abuse. Although no abuse is written out it is described, at times in detail. ****
“Hey, Sophie, Do you like ice cream?” I ask.
I look over at Isabel and give her a wink because I have an idea. I kneel in front of Sophie, so we are eye level.
“I like ice cream, why?” she answers.
I can’t help but chuckle. There is not getting anything past this one, Isabel is in trouble when she gets older.
“Well, I need to go to the store before we head to my house. I was hoping you would help me pick an ice cream flavor?”
“Ice Cream? For after dinner?”
“Yes, but you have to be good and listen to Mommy while we are in the store,” I respond. I feel like I am negotiating with a terrorist at this point, but as long as she feels comfortable, I see it as a win.
I look over at Isabel and see her trying to stifle a laugh. When I turn back to Sophie, she seems deep in thought.
“How about ice cream and a movie?”
“Well, Ms. Sophie you have a deal.” I reach my hand out, and we shake to close the deal.
All three of us are smiles as we load into my truck and head to Target, for some supplies for Isabel and Sophie. Going shopping with a four-year-old is an experience. Everything is interesting, Sophie seems to say whatever pops into her head, it’s both entertaining and exhausting.
“Ooohhhh, Mommy! I wanna feel all the pillows!” Sophie says as we pass the decorative pillows on our way to grab some clothes for her.
“Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! Can I see the toys? Please?!?” she says as we pass the toy aisle after grabbing toiletries for both ladies and clothes for Isabel.
Through the entire trip, Isabel keeps her cool and calmly tells Sophie ‘no’ even when she pouts. The pouty lip pulls my heartstrings, so I take pity on her, she’s had a long day.
“Hey, Sophie, why don’t you help me pick an ice cream flavor? What’s your favorite?” I ask her.
Her entire face lights up like it’s Christmas morning. She starts to answer but looks at Isabel first, when she nods that it’s okay, Sophie lets out a little squeal of excitement.
“I can really pick the ice cream?” she looks at me like I’ll take it back, but I would never do that.
“Yup, you get to pick,” I tell her.
“CHOCOLATE!” she shouts.
Her answer makes me laugh, even though Isabel is telling her to calm down and not be so loud in the store.
“Alright, Sophie. Let’s go pick some ice cream.” Turning to Isabel, I ask, “Mind if I push her?”
Surprised at the offer, Isabel says, “Oh…Um…okay.”
Stepping up to the cart, I start to jog then jump onto the bottom bar of the shopping cart. It’s been a long time since I took a joy ride on a cart, but Sophie’s squeal of laughter makes up for the dirty looks. I can’t control my own laughter as I get the cart under control and wait for Isabel to catch up to us.
“That was fun!” Sophie exclaims, “Can we do it again?”
Before I get a chance, Isabel responds for me, “No, Sophie. That’s enough excitement for tonight.”
She tries to look stern, but she’s hiding a smile as well. We make our way to the ice cream cooler, and I tell Sophie to pick whatever one she wants.
“I want the chocolate one,” she tells me.
“Just plain old chocolate? No marshmallows or peanut butter or caramel?” I ask. I can’t believe she just wants plain chocolate.
“Nope. Just chocolate,” she tells me, putting her hands on her hips. “What’s wrong with just chocolate?”
Putting my hands in the air in surrender, I respond by saying,
“Just checking, sweet pea.”
We gather our items we need and head to the registers, Sophie insists on loading the conveyor belt herself. This girl is amazing. She is smart, spunky, and definitely has a mind of her own. I think I’m falling in love with her already.
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Raised all over the country, I’m an interesting mix of East Coast meets West Coast with a little bit of Southern thrown in, just for good measure. I married a sexy man in uniform who let me spawn and am now raising a mutinous army of hell raisers that I created myself, all while he defends our country. I drink too much coffee until it’s late enough to drink too much wine and is sexually frustrated for your freedom. I never thought I would be a writer, it was never an interest of mine. But when the voices start in and won’t let you sleep, you write so they STFU and leave you alone for a while. If you see me online, I’m probably sitting in a closet, hiding from my kids. I’m sarcastic, love a dirty alpha male, and love to laugh.
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