We’re so pleased to have author Kelly Jensen dropping in today on the tour for her brand new release Building Forever, book one in the Forever Time series. Kelly’s sharing a peek behind the curtain and into the origin of the book with us, and there’s a giveaway too, so be sure to check out those details below.
Behind the Book
I’ve told this story a few times, but doubt I’ll ever tire of it: I got the idea for Building Forever while leaning against the kitchen counter, stuffing my face with Cheez-Its. I love Cheez-Its—particularly the white cheddar variety—and often feel the urge to put as many in my mouth as possible. I want all of that flavor, and I want it now.
So, there I was, pushing crackers into my mouth, probably dropping a couple to the floor, and my daughter walked into the kitchen. She gave me one of those teenage looks, like: Why are you so weird? And my brain—as it likes to do—flew in a completely different direction.
I could imagine what I looked like: ridiculous. I had cheese dust everywhere and cracker crumbs clinging to my lips. And I wondered what it would be like to meet the love of your life while looking like that. To be caught in this utterly mundane and somewhat embarrassing moment and to have it immortalized.
And then Charlie spoke to me. His voice was so loud and clear, I immediately—and I do mean that very minute—ran upstairs and started writing.
The earliest version of Building Forever (fondly known as the Cheez-It book) was in first person with a single point of view. It was going to be Charlie’s story: him coming to terms with being the parent of a young woman—his daughter is seventeen—and his decision to explore his sexuality more fully. But after putting down about ten thousand words, I realized Charlie wasn’t going to have enough story on his own to carry an entire novel, so I switched to third person and wrote another few chapters in between Charlie’s from Simon’s point of view. I immediately loved Simon. I adored his quietness, which much as Charlie’s garrulousness, had not been planned. And I knew early on that Charlie was going to damn near break his heart. But I also knew that everything would turn out okay, because this was going to be a love story, meaning everyone would live happily ever after.
I love writing science fiction and contemporary romance equally as much, but for many of the same reasons. My stories tend to be very character driven, so the plot usually hinges more on their need to grow and change than what’s going on in their world. But I also like to give a grounded feel. I love exploring my character’s environments and always try to make them important to the story. So the setting for Building Forever is one I considered very carefully. I wanted a small town—but not a rural setting where my characters might have to fight certain prejudices.
I chose Bethlehem because it’s actually quite a cosmopolitan little city that actually maintains a small town feel. There is a Main Street and a lot of history, but with several colleges, major hotels, and a number of nearby attractions, Bethlehem manages to be both modern and progressive while still being steeped in history—making it the perfect place for Charlie to grow up and the perfect city to draw a wandering architect like Simon.
As always, by the time I’d finished writing this book, I had more than I anticipated. More words, more potential, and more story. I wouldn’t know for a while that it’d be the first of a series, but having just completed the final edits on the third book, I’m so glad that’s what it became. That this story of two older men and a second chance at forever didn’t end here—and that I got the chance to explore other towns, other families, and put together a few more happy ever afters.
And to think it all began with a mouth of cheesy little crackers. :)
About Building Forever
A new town, a new neighbor, and a new chance to build a forever.
Charlie King is doing fine. Sure, he’s a widower raising a teenage daughter who just got her first boyfriend, his book series isn’t writing itself, and he has a crush on his new neighbor — the guy next door. But everything’s just fine.
Simon Lynley is doing better. He moved to Bethlehem to fall out of love and rebuild his career. An affair with his neighbor isn’t part of the plan, but the attraction between them is too hard to ignore.
But when Simon’s ex follows him to Pennsylvania seeking reconciliation, and Charlie’s life starts to feel like a video on repeat, everything comes apart. Charlie worries that he’s failing as a father, and Simon is a distraction he can’t afford. Meanwhile Simon doesn’t know if he could survive being left again, and he hasn’t come all this way to make the same mistakes. But despite their fears, it’s only together that they’ll find the strength to slay old foes and build the forever they’ve been waiting for.
Now available from Riptide Publishing!
About the This Time Forever Series
Small towns and second chances.
Simon, Frank, and Brian think love has passed them by. Each is facing down his fiftieth birthday—Simon in a few years, Frank next year, and Brian soon enough. Each has loved and lost. But for these men, everything old really is new again, and it’s only when they return to their roots that they’ll find their second chances and the happily ever after they’ve been waiting their whole lives for.
This time it’s forever.
This series includes:
- Building Forever — releasing October 15, available now!
- Renewing Forever — releasing November 12, available for preorder!
- Chasing Forever — releasing December 10, available soon!
About the Author
If aliens ever do land on Earth, Kelly will not be prepared, despite having read over a hundred stories about the apocalypse. Still, she will pack her precious books into a box and carry them with her as she strives to survive. It’s what bibliophiles do.
Kelly is the author of a number of novels, novellas, and short stories, including the Chaos Station series, cowritten with Jenn Burke. Some of what she writes is speculative in nature, but mostly it’s just about a guy losing his socks and/or burning dinner. Because life isn’t all conquering aliens and mountain peaks. Sometimes finding a happy ever after is all the adventure we need.
Connect with Kelly: Website || Facebook || Twitter || Tumblr || Pinterest || Instagram
To celebrate the release of Building Forever one lucky person will win a $25 Riptide Publishing gift card and a swag pack of stickers, art cards, and bookmarks! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on October 20, 2018. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following along, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!
9 thoughts on “Guest Post and Giveaway: Building Forever by Kelly Jensen”
I’m looking forward to reading this book!
kathleenpower at comcast dot net
Thanks for hosting me today! (p.s. I think you get proportionately more of my Behind the Book posts than any other blogger! <3)
Ha! I love the peeks behind the curtain, Kelly! <3
Thank you for a glimpse of behind the scene how the book came to be! Looking forward to the following books in the series.
puspitorinid AT yahoo DOT com
Love the book inspiration!
jlshannon74 at gmail.com
Gotta love the way the muse hits!
thanks for the glimpse!
Thank you for the behind the scene post!
humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com
Congrats on the new release!