We’re so pleased to have author Ashlyn Kane joining us today to celebrate her new book, His Leading Man, an addition to the Dreamspun Desires house line from Dreamspinner Press. Ashlyn has a coloring page she’s sharing with you today, so be sure to download it and have fun!
Learning to Do Nothing
Hi everyone! I’m Ashlyn Kane, and I’m an internet device junkie.
If you’re like me, you have a hard time unplugging. A hard time doing only one thing. A hard time not checking your phone when you’re on your computer, or flipping over to Twitter while you do your work email, or scrolling through Facebook while you’re watching TV. Judging by how much better I feel when I just shove my phone in my back pocket and walk my dog, taking in the actual world around me and paying attention to what I am doing, multitasking isn’t good for my brain. And I’m pretty sure studies have shown that multitasking is just a way of doing multiple things way slower than you would have done them consecutively. But overstimulating yourself is a hard habit to break.
Last winter I went through a rough period of anxiety and depression. Periodic trips to places of sunshine helped some (thanks, Florida), but I still had trouble leaving work and my newsfeed alone. Enter a gift from my mother-in-law: a set of colored pencils and an adult coloring book. I do mean adult!
Sitting at the breakfast bar with a sheet of paper and a spread of available art supplies helped me focus on doing one thing—coloring—in a way that was almost meditative. Finally I could do just one thing for an hour, and at the end I felt accomplished and relaxed. So when it came time to decide on promo for my new book, His Leading Man, I thought, Maybe other people will like relaxing this way too.
So I commissioned the lovely and talented Emily Liu of EmilyLiuWho.com to draw a scene from the book. You can see it below, and there’s also a PDF version for downloading and printing at home.
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In this scene, due to a filming setback, Steve and Drew have a weekend off, and Steve starts thinking about the practical aspects of dating a movie star.
Steve managed breakfast—yogurt, fresh fruit, scrambled eggs, and whole wheat toast—and later that afternoon, Drew made them sandwiches to accompany the rest of the potato salad while Steve worked on the script. But as nice as it was to sit at his table in the sunny den and write while Drew swam or played with Rita or lounged in the sun, Steve thought they’d both go stir-crazy if they didn’t leave the property for three days.
Besides, it was his turn to take Drew out.
“So I have an idea for dinner,” Steve said, standing under the pool canopy. “But we don’t have to if you don’t want to.”
Drew looked up from the pulp paperback he’d picked off the shelf in Steve’s dad’s office. “That sounds ominous.”
Steve tore his eyes away from the damp hem of Drew’s swim shorts. “It’s not. A friend of mine, Alex, is the maître d’ at a restaurant in town. He can get us in the back entrance to a private table. You like seafood, right? I already told him no dill.”
Drew set the book aside and squinted at Steve. “Are you trying to impress me?”
No point denying it. Steve nodded vigorously. “Yes.”
“Oh. In that case, I accept. Though I didn’t bring much in the way of formalwear.”
“I’ve already seen you in a tuxedo, so I think I’ll live through my disappointment not getting you into a suit.” He’d rather get him out of it anyway. “Nobody to impress. No cameras, just discretion. I’ll even arrange a car.”
Drew cocked his head to one side, assessing. Heat rose in Steve’s face and burned his ears. Surely Drew had to see through him, had to know where this was going. As seduction ploys went, this one came straight from the book. But Steve’s father had always said the classics were classic for a reason.
“I’m already here,” Drew said. “I’m already impressed. You don’t have to…. I don’t need it. I know you’re not the glamor-and-glitter type. I like that about you.” He paused, then amended, “I like you.”
“I know.” The words came so easily it should have been a surprise. But it wasn’t at all. “You wouldn’t have come out here if you didn’t like it, me, if you didn’t want some quiet sometimes. But you live in that world too, the one with all the lights and sparkle. I want to prove I’m… not afraid of it.” To Drew, absolutely. But also to himself, and maybe a few others as well.
He wasn’t expecting any publicity, though. Baby steps.
After another second of studying Steve, Drew shrugged and smiled, his eyes crinkling in the corners. “Okay. Just one condition.”
By now Steve knew not to expect anything too serious. “Name your price.”
Drew crooked a finger, then reached up to grab a handful of Steve’s shirt. He tugged him down into a short, sweet, coconut-scented kiss. “There,” he said. “Condition met. When do we leave?”
If I’ve got your attention, here’s the cover and the blurb.
He wrote a comedy. Fate directed a romance.
Drew Beaumont is bored of the same old roles: action hero, supervillain, romantic lead. He’s not going to let a fresh gay buddy comedy languish just because they can’t find him the right costar. No, Drew bats his eyelashes and convinces everyone that the movie’s writer should play Drew’s not-so-straight man.
Aspiring writer Steve Sopol has never had a screenplay optioned. Now one of Hollywood’s hottest properties wants to be in a movie Steve hasn’t finished writing—and he wants Steve as his costar. Turns out the chemistry between them is undeniable—on and offscreen.
Drew swore off dating in the biz, but Steve is the whole package: sharp, funny, humble, and cute. For Steve, though, giving in to the movie magic means the end of the privacy he cherishes. Will the credits roll before their ride into the sunset?
About the Author
ASHLYN KANE is a Canadian former expat and current hockey fan. She is a writer, editor, handyperson, dog mom, and friend—sometimes all at once.
On any given day, she can usually be found walking her ninety-pound baby chocolate lapdog, Indy, or holed up in her office avoiding housework. She has a deep and abiding love of romance-novel tropes, a habit of dropping too many f-bombs, and—fortunately—a very forgiving family.