Hi, my name is N.J. Nielsen and I would firstly like to thank everyone for taking the time to read what I have to say.

I figure I’ll talk about my life and my writing. Right now my life is very much like my current release at Pride Publishing— The Connelly Chronicles 2: Beautiful Goodbyes. I’m not saying that I’m rich or anything like that, because believe me I’m very far from it…LOL. I mean that they are taking similar paths due to the fact there is utter chaos, which all gets smoothed out through the help of family and friends.

The Connelly Chronicles is a series that is closed to my heart. Book 1: Family Connections has quite a few events that have happened in my real life family… I’m not saying who they are about, yet I have had a few ring and say they got a chuckle reading how I wrote their parts into the storyline. In book 2 there are again some family stories to be heard, but again I can’t say which ones are real and which are pure imagination. Let’s just say I’m expecting a few calls again. Just so you know I love my family—every crazy-arsed one of them.

Ray and Viv have been a couple of characters who have been mulling around inside my imagination for at least ten years now. They’ve gone through many incarnations until I finally settled on the men who now grace the pages. I try to base each of my characters on real people… mainly just their mannerisms and ways of speech. The characters looks are eclectic—meaning their inspiration comes from many places. A lot of them are pictures of people whether they be celebrities, or random pictures people have sent to me, and said this person would make a great character… and usually they’re right.

I’ve been asked by many people if I have a favourite character in the story. Yes, I do. I actually have two. I love writing Jamie and GG. I just think Jamie is a wonderful person to write, and GG reminds me of my own grandmother… or how I perceived her to be. Nana Daisy died when I was very young, so basically I can only base her on what I remember as a child. In truth I very rarely saw my nana. In my mind she was just awesome when we did travel to her home in Sydney for holidays, or Nana daisy came to stay with us.

Seriously though, I absolutely love writing stories, especially ones where there is major family involvement or interference, because I think it just adds something extra to the book. Most times it’ a fun factor to the story line. Sometimes people can just be so damn hilarious without even trying and those are the times where it makes a great read.

Okay, I’ve been rambling on here for a while now. I’m blaming the allergy medication (I am allergic to ants and got bitten way too many times today!). Don’t worry I’ll be fine. I usually am after some rest. I suppose I was supposed to talk about something profound, or at least interesting and I hope I’ve given you all a chuckle at least.

Until next time, take care…

NJ.

 pp-tcc-2-beautiful-goodbyes

BLURB: The Connelly Chronicles 2: Beautiful Goodbyes

As someone wise once said—Life is like an ice cream cone. When you think you have it licked, it drips all over you.

When life seems to be running smoothly there has to be a bump—or three—in the road. Ray and Viv realize while they grow closer, their family is falling apart around them, and they can’t seem to do anything to stop the heartache from happening. The only thing they can do is pick up the pieces.

Ray would love nothing better than to shake the hell out of the adults in the family and tell them all to wake up. The only problem is that Ray has his own demons to face—between being swept away by flood waters to his daughter’s unravelling relationship, custody battles and launching a new business to help abandoned teenagers, Ray loses himself for a while.

Viv tries desperately to hold the family together. He’s so used to Ray being the strong one that at first he’s clueless how to fix what’s going wrong in their lives. Viv enlists the help of the family to get everyone back on track. Sometimes wisdom comes from where you least expect it, but mostly it comes from the ones who know and love you best.

With so much going on in their family, will Viv and Ray have opportunities to keep their love alive? Or will their world come crashing down around them?

Publisher’s Note: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series.

 

Excerpt:

Ray listened to the conversation going on around him. He was excited that everyone was finally pulling together as they should have all along. It still amazed him that it had never once clicked in his mind what their connection was to Antonio and his family. The man was his uncle, and Ray had been oblivious until Grandma’s conscience had her admitting the truth. His attention was caught by Tony entering the room, and he wasn’t alone. There was an older teenager with him, dressed up in gothic attire and, for some reason, Ray could only stare at him. His eyes were the exact same color as Viv’s. Hell, the guy was almost a mirror image of his husband.

“I’m looking for Christopher Vivvens.” The young man sounded nervous.

“That’s me.” Viv placed Layla on the bunny rug and stood.

“Then…I think you’re my father,” the guy said softly. “My name is Declan—Declan Vivvens.”

Christ on a pogo stick.

Ray couldn’t believe what was currently happening. He hoped like all get out he had been able to keep a straight face when Declan made his mind-blowing announcement. The uncertainty on the boy’s face didn’t sit well with Ray. Some part of him wanted to reach out and haul the poor kid into his arms for a hug, and tell him everything was going to be all right. Glancing toward his husband, he caught the look of astonishment on Viv’s face. He knew without a doubt this was all news to him.

“Who is your mother?” Viv asked a little warily. Guilt and something akin to hurt swept over Viv’s face.

The boy rifled through the ratty bag he held and pulled out a neatly folded piece of paper and a pendant necklace, and offered them to Viv. “After she died I found these hidden among her belongings. My mother’s name was Susan Whitely.” He swallowed loudly. “My name is Declan, Declan Vivvens. My mother told me I’m named after my grandfather.” Sighing heavily, he went on, “Never mind, you seem to be way too young to be my father. I guess my parentage was just something else Mum lied about.”

The defeat in the boy’s voice clutched at Ray’s heart. Ray got to his feet then ushered Declan from the room before the tears in Declan’s eyes could spill over. He could tell Declan didn’t appear too comfortable as the center of attention and wanted to give him a little bit of privacy so he could sort through his emotions. By the time they reached the kitchen, the tension seemed to be leaving the young man’s body.

“Let me make you something to eat.” Ray was pretty sure Declan wasn’t eating properly, because in Ray’s eyes, he was one skinny-as-hell kid. He didn’t look any older than fifteen or so. “If you don’t mind me asking, how old are you?”

Declan gazed around the room as he sat on a stool at the kitchen bench. “I’m seventeen.”

Doing the math in his head, he realized Viv would have only been sixteen when he’d gotten Susan pregnant. There was no doubt in his mind Viv was indeed his father. Declan was too much like Viv for them not to be closely related. They both had the same slightly curled, glossy black hair, and those beautiful stunningly green eyes. Pain twinged in his heart at Viv having missed so much of his son’s life, and for Declan missing out on his father.

“How long ago did Susan pass away?” Both Ray and Declan jumped as Viv spoke from the doorway.

“Hi.” Ray smiled at his husband. “Come, join us. Make yourself useful and grab some sodas from the fridge.”

“Mum died about a year ago. Uncle Ryan came to live in the house and after a while, he kicked me out.”

“Where have you been living since he kicked you out?” Viv demanded a little more brusquely than Ray would have liked.

Ray sighed as Declan shrugged without answering. He knew that sometimes Viv wasn’t crash-hot when it came to using his people skills. He didn’t want Viv to scare the boy off before Ray had convinced him to stay. “Viv, not now. Let Declan have a chance to eat and unwind before you start grilling him.” Turning to Declan, he winked. “Fathers think they have to know everything about their kid’s lives. You’ll get used to it eventually.”

The smile he got in return was reward enough.

“I wasn’t trying to be bossy. I just wanted to know where we had to go and pick up his stuff so we could bring him home,” Viv explained.

The shock on Declan’s face was almost comical. “You want me to live here with you?”

“Isn’t this why you found me?” Viv asked.


About NJ Nielsen

NJ Nielsen

NJ needs to write like she needs to breathe. It’s an addiction that she never intends to find a cure for. When you don’t find NJ writing about the wonderful men in her stories you find her reading work by others who she greatly admires. NJ lives in the SE of Qld, Australia with her family who all encourage her writing career even if she does occasionally call them by her character’s names. NJ thinks that anyone taking the time to read her stuff is totally awesome.

 

Beautiful Goodbyes is now available to buy and download from Pride, Amazon and other retailers.

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