Hi lovelies! It gives me great pleasure today to host Tani Hanes and her new book, “Living in the Shallows”! For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post – except the Available at Amazon picture.
Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card! Also, come back daily to interact with Tani and to increase your chances of winning!
Thanks for stopping by! Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!
Living in the Shallows
by Tani Hanes
GENRE: New Adult/Romance
Aileen is a bilingual music student with a chronic case of poverty. She gets a dream job as an interpreter for a boy band making a movie in Japan. Having spent her life as a sheltered, shy only child in the rarefied world of classical piano, she is utterly unprepared for this new world, these boys and their frank physicality and openness. Theo, especially, the known playboy and unrepentant flirt of the group, makes her uncomfortable in a way she's never felt before, and ultimately Aileen, or Tinker Bell, as she's known to the boys, has to decide if she's ready to leave the sidelines and become a participant in her own life.
"No, don't do that, little one, not yet."
"I fell, right?" I asked. "Teddy came in, he was drunk, he said—he said some things, you got mad at him—" I looked up at Gethin, "Matty hit him, then I ran over to them and tripped and hit my head on the edge of the table."
"What?" Matty exploded. "Tinker Bell, Theo hit you! He was aiming for me, I mean, I assume he was aiming for me—" this with another glare at Teddy, "but he took a swing as he was going down and he hit you in the face, bloodied your fucking nose!"
"Dammit, Matthew, of course I was aiming for you!" Teddy shouted. "Why would I want to hit her? You'd just clocked me in the face! She just got in between us at the wrong moment, and I was going down at the time, that's why I swung so low! Don't you think I'd cut my own arm off before I'd hit her?"
"Actually, I think he hit me in the jaw," I said, again reaching for my face. "Could you take a look?" Geth leaned in, turning my head gently so he could see.
"Jesus Christ, she has a cut, just under her ear, along her jawline, a pretty deep one, too," he said, horrified. "Guess we didn't notice it with all the blood from her nose, but this looks awful." He turned and looked at Teddy, and his silence was worse than any words he could have spoken.
"What's wrong with you?" asked Ronan tearfully to Teddy.
A Deleted Scene
I’ve written a seven book serial, though the farther out the books, the rougher they are, obviously. Only the first two are published so far, possibly the third, depending on when you’re reading this.
My point is that the story is set on paper, and I know what’s going to happen, all the way to the end, even if my readers don’t yet. This makes rewrites and deletions very difficult, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.
There’s a scene in the second book, Diving Deep, in which my heroine and one of the *other* guys in the band almost go too far, which has given me more trouble than any other scene I’ve dealt with so far, though there are a few gnarly ones coming up.
When I first wrote this scene, they went much farther than they do in the scene that ended up in the book. I blithely sent it out to my betas, and the uproar, especially from my “baby betas” (the teenagers, the sweet high school girls), was immediate. Too far. It constituted “cheating”, which they felt Tink couldn’t come back from.
So I rewrote it into a much milder scene, where not much happened, but it didn’t have the same emotional impact. So I tried for a middle ground (this is tricky stuff, because different people think different things constitute “actual” sex, including this writer), because I needed for there to be guilt and sorrow, but nothing that would make a reconciliation impossible.
The problem was and is that I happen to really like this particular *other* guy a lot. A lot. And I liked them together. I briefly considered writing a scene called “Tink and (insert guys name :o) get it on”, just to get it out of my system. Torrid. Graphic. You know, put it all out there. But when it actually gets written, for me anyway, it becomes part of the story, and I almost can’t come back from that place. I would never be able to erase the image of the two of them together, and it would become canon simply because of its existence, whether it was in the story or not.
So, sadly, I never wrote that particular scene, hot as it would’ve been. I think I steered a fairly steady course down the line, but never crossed it; I hope so, anyway. And regardless of whichever version ended up in the book, the fact is that Tink has guilt to deal with anyway, because she’ll never know if she would’ve stopped.
I’ve always maintained that “cheating” happens in a person’s head first, and the desire to do it is the problem, not necessarily the follow-through. It’s different for different people, but for Tink, who never had to deal with any of these issues before meeting these boys, this is shattering. It never occurred to her that she could cross a line, or indeed that lines even existed in her life.
And I’ve wondered if other teen romance writers have experienced any of the above. I don’t know any, so I can’t ask; if you’re out there, reading this, TELL ME, please.
My name is Tani Hanes, and I am a 51 year old substitute teacher. I’m from central California and am a recent transplant to New York City. The most important things to know about me are that I'm punctual, I love grammar and sushi, and I'm very intolerant of intolerance. The least important things to know about me are that I like to knit and I couldn't spell "acoustic" for 40 years. I've wanted to write since I was ten, and I finally did it. If you want to write, don't wait as long as I did, it's pointless, and very frustrating!
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