Newly Released: Kissing
#Kissing by author Ellie Brixton
Publication date: June 14th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
I was always the good girl.
Then when the pressure became too much, I took off and found me a bad boy.
Niko. The hot, British rock star and frontman of the Halos.
He took my angel wings and gave me a lot of things, well, everything but the Big O.
So with my #fail in hand, I did the worst thing imaginable.
I went home. The insta-nagging, criticism, and impossible expectations reminded me why my life #sucked—the reason I left in the first place.
Well, everything was the same except for JQ, my high school crush. With a snug T-shirt and jeans that fit in all of the right places, it looks like he became man and maybe it was time for me to become a woman.
#Kissing is a sexy, rock star romance for new adult, college, and contemporary romance readers who enjoy love stories with an HEA.
Author’s note: #KISSING is a full-length, standalone novel. Due to strong language and content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.
EXCERPT:I used to be a good girl. I used to be many things. Now I just make it up as I go along. Most of the time I don’t even know what I’m doing. Only that right now, I like the way this feels.
My moan disappears into the grinding of a guitar as I squeeze my eyes shut. I make my own stars as phosphenes flicker and dance behind my shuttered lids, winding through my vision in silver and yellow. I’m close, but not close enough for my mind not to wander.
JQ and I found a field as far from town as we could, dimming the city light. His fingers rested just inches from mine. We were young and nervous enough to make an excuse: a science project for Mr. Wilkins. We watched a celestial show in the sky that night, drifting to sleep under a summer blanket of stars. When dawn kissed our cold cheeks awake, we clasped hands. Then he kissed me, and I ran away.
Our lives went in parallax and here I am, my back arching as I call out with pleasure while my boyfriend has his head between my legs. I shouldn’t be thinking about someone else. But he accidentally called me Heather once—whoever that is. These days the line between right and wrong is a blur. But pleasure is pleasure. And I can’t deny Niko makes me feel good. I’ll settle for good.
Ellie Brixton is a unicorn by day and an author by night. She's a firm believer in eating dessert first and fancies herself a cookie connoisseur. Although she runs every day, she wishes for a 1959 Cadillac convertible, in pink of course. This is her first novel.
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The particular frenzy of backstage morphs from last minute monitor repairs—and choking back the remnants of stage fright—to the synchronous heart-pumping anticipation of those opening chords as the music stretches from here to infinity. Instruments and amps and hundreds of voices transform what might be understood as merely sound and instead whisper their truths to our souls.
Since I can't have the dream house and dream life, I'll take this. The moment promising the transcendence of music.
Niko told me he used to puke before going on stage and then said it stopped when I came along. The blowjobs and sex help, I'm sure of it, because he's one-hundred percent swagger as the lights follow him across the stage.
Mitty appears, his bass strung low, but not for style points, rather, his long arms. Jill ghosts into position, but then the light catches her hardcore expression and if nothing else, she's a rock goddess. There's no disputing it even if there's not much else to like about her.
Kenji's last, having changed into a purple robe with a white fur collar and a gold crown studded with jewels. He throws off the robe and pounds his chest, his nightly ritual before going bananas on the drums.
My body hums as I elbow my way to the front. Hundreds of fans keep the autumn chill out of the venue. The lights dim before flaring back on.
My shoulders relax. My mind goes quiet. People all around me cheer, calling out to the band, hands already raised in the air, yearning for that thing only music provides.
INTERVIEW with Ellie Brixton, author of #Kissing
What was the inspiration or the story behind #Kissing?
I don't know. That's not an answer, is it? I guess it started with a vision of Josie with a kick ass attitude. I love contemporary romance, but had been reading a lot where the main character was sweet, maybe conflicted, but always a good girl. The question that came to mind was, what happens when the good girl goes bad? Josie wasn't always wild and irreverent. I dug a little into my imagination and learned her back-story and what tormented her. It made sense to position her with the backdrop of rock and roll, the romanticized, trashing hotel rooms, taking over the world kind. Then of course, at her core, she's still the good girl, but maybe a little wiser when she comes through it all to the other side.
What was the biggest challenge of writing #Kissing?
The biggest challenge was time. I never have enough time to get done what I want to in a day. Either that or I have poor time management skills, and it's not because I procrastinate or get distracted by social media. Ok, maybe a little bit, but not reeeeaaallly. One trick I read somewhere is to always leave off a scene so you know where it's going or begin the next chapter and leave off. In other words, when you start writing again, you'll have a clear direction. The other challenge was getting the tension right and the intimate scenes and the characters and... The truth is, it was all a challenge, but totally worth it when I wrote the last sentence and now can share #Kissing with readers.
Describe Josie, Niko & JQ in one sentence each. Who's your favorite?
Josie: has a big heart hidden behind her sneer.
Niko: a beautiful and talented bastard.
JQ: perfectly imperfect and deliciously sexy.
They're all my favorites, but probably JQ ;-)
Do you have a favorite scene or line from #Kissing?
The what would happen scene is probably my favorite, but I can't say more than that because spoiler! But I really enjoyed writing the deep point of view concert scenes. I love the feeling of being part of the crowd, dipping right into the wild, noisy, crazy moment when live music reaches right down to my bones.
Describe a typical day of writing for you.
Responding to and sending email to start, then I check in on social media for about a half hour. After that, it depends on what projects I have going on, but I'll either outline, draft, or edit until lunchtime. A little puppy playtime, social media, and then I'm back at it, usually writing. The late afternoon often brings regular life stuff, not the glamorous of a writer in my yoga pants and bare feet. Ha ha. In the evening, I'll spend a little while on social media, emails, and often wrap up something from earlier, organize myself for the next day, or do non-writing writerly tasks such as marketing, promotion, and outreach.
What are you reading right now? To put a spin on #WCW who's your #ACW (author crush)?
My Kindle is stacked! To name a few I have a few Rachel Van Dyken titles in the queue, Mr. O (can't wait!), and I'm kind of feeling like reading Right by Jana Aston again. Also, there are too many series' to name that I want to dive into. I fantasize about a week-long retreat where I lay on the beach and read. That should be a thing. Reading retreats. At a spa. With hot waiters.
Do you have a book boyfriend?
Do I have a book boyfriend? A? As in singular? The beauty of the book boyfriend is that I can have multiple. I'm currently dating Miles from Melanie Harlow's Some Sort of Crazy, Sawyer from Right by Jana Aston, and I've always had a soft spot for Gilbert Blythe from Anne of Green Gables.
What's your most guilty pleasure?
Cookies. All kinds of cookies. I've never met a cookie I didn't like. I love cookies. Did I mention cookies? Also brownies are pretty good.
Cold: Passion tea
Warm: Anything pumpkin
Of all time: Taylor Swift
Of the moment: Vance Joy
Righty or lefty?
Biggest pet peeve?
Websites that take AGES to load are evil, usually it's because they have pesky ads that take forever. I'll find a delicious looking (cookie) recipe on Pinterest, click the link, and then wait so long to get the post that I'll end up closing the window.
This is your first book, what's next? What do you have in the works for readers?
#Kissing started as a standalone-all by itself-no thought of any books beyond a part four in the form of a novella told from the point of view of another key character. Yes, that's happening. It's called XOX and will be available in September.
But then…the gears started turning in my mind (as they so often do), and I came up with a second full length book telling the story of another character and her companion novella. And that was it.
But then…I was lying in bed and had to turn on the light and jot down another idea…a third story, and it became the Rock and Romance series. There will also be a companion novella.
Characters will make cameos in each of the stories, but they'll standalone.
I'm so excited to get working on it!
I have a rough outline for another series that will hopefully come into being in late 2017.
I'm so grateful that I get to write, for the opportunity to connect with readers, and hope that can continue!
Interview #2 with Josie Speedwell, ex-half of Niksie, music lover, and diabetic
(also, fictional character in the novel #Kissing by Ellie Brixton).
What shade of lipstick do you wear?
Mac: Ruby Woo. When I'm wearing it on my lips, I'm bulletproof.
What's your favorite band? Song? Do you sing along?
Worst. Question. Ever. Not because I don't have a favorite, but because I have too many. The Halos, of course, but here are a few others:
The classics: ACDC, Billy Holiday, and the Rolling Stones.
The contemp: Gwen Stefani, Maroon 5, and Pink.
The we're going to start a riot: Arcade Fire, Nirvana, and Band of Skulls.
The rest: Coldplay, Prince, and Madonna.
Yes, I sing along, and I sing loud.
Do you read? What are your favorite books?
I'm not a bookworm, but more of a music worm (is that a thing?). Give me some CD's with liner notes and I'll get lost. Though I love the classics and a good love story can rob me of hours, but if there's a happy ending, I'm glad for the theft. The last book I read I found on my friend Penny's shelf called Wallbanger. Let's just say I stayed up nearly all night reading it and tried very hard not to wake her up with my laughter and um, other things.
Do you Netflix and chill? No, seriously, what's your favorite movie? Snack?
I have Netflixed and chilled; I'm a big fan, actually, but mostly the chilling part. I've also hung out and watched a movie on Netflix with my guy while eating popcorn and Twizzlers. No, that's not a euphemism. But I do always go for extra butter.
If you could have someone star as you in the movie of your life, who would you cast?
Ooh. If I had to pick someone to star in the film depicting my life, it would be Cara Delevingne. Not because we look alike. I don't have a British accent, and I'm not half as funny, though I have been called bonkers. I'd pick her because she has the lethal stare on lockdown. Zoe Kravitz is pretty badass too.
Do you have any weird habits?
When I leave a bathroom, I always check my teeth for lipstick; it's red, after all and my shoes for toilet paper. When I was in elementary school, I walked out of the bathroom with a piece stuck to my sneaker. Embarrassment for me looks more like a raccoon in a cage. In other words, I consider it a public service to spare others from my embarrassment turned rage.
Do you have any phobias?
Whatever the opposite of freedom is.
Left side of the bed or right and what do you wear to sleep?
What's your drink order?
I've been easing up on the hard stuff and if in good company I'll have a glass of champagne or Rosé. Otherwise, I've been drinking this stuff called Kombucha. Going down it feels like slime going down, but supposedly it's good for you. I also love me a steaming hot dirty chai.
If you could have lunch with someone alive or dead that you admire, who would it be?
Dead? I'd go with my grandmother and Beethoven. We'd have finger sandwiches and tea. I'd ask him what was the single most important thing he learned from his piano teachers because that's what I someday want to pass onto my students. Also, he was her favorite.
Alive? I'd hang out with Tina Fey and we'd laugh. My laughter is legendary.
Bonus question: What do you want?
Aside from world peace? I want to live a long and happy life surrounded by the people I love and music.