General Housekeeping: March 2017

My new Paperwhite, during its initial charging phase. (Sorry for the wonky photo quality here.) 

First of all, I’m sorry for not posting last week; it had been a chaotic weekend leading up to an equally stressful Monday, so I didn’t have any time to write or come up with something new. But I am doing fine now, and am taking a break from school for the time being until things get sorted out.

Second: How about the new blog theme? Not that I have anything against the old layout, but I thought that I’d freshen up this blog after years of working with the same old theme, week in and week out. It’s also part of my efforts to work on my author platform this year, since marketing is one of the things I need to work on while I’m in between projects. I hope you like this new layout as much as I do.

And now, as a way of thanking you for your patience, I offer you this passage from Crushingly Close. Enjoy!


Mang Buboy did not look up from his phone while he spoke. “Are you going to be okay back there?”

“We’re okay,” I said.

“Okay.” Daniel’s eyes twinkled, and I’d never seen that look from him before. “Thanks, Agnes.”

The rest of the team nodded and held up their thumbs.

Daniel slid his hand from my nape to the spot between my shoulder and collarbone. “How are you?”

“Kinda tired.” I continued to stretch out my neck.” At least I got to eat something on the plane.” 

“We’re going to need dinner when we get to the hotel.” He exerted pressure on my shoulder muscles, and I felt them go soft under his touch. “Does this feel good?”

My voice lowered to a whisper. “Daniel. I’m—this—I think—“

“You looked like you could use the massage.”

I placed my hand over his, as if to stop him, but it felt a little too gentle for me. “They’ll see us.”

“I’ll tell them the truth.”

“And that is?”

He intensified the pressure of his kneading. “That you look tense. That you were tired.”

“Putting the sexy moves on me, aren’t you?”

The warmth of his hands radiated through my clothes, and I could feel his breathing grow heavy against my ear. “You’re liking this too much.”

“Maybe I am.” I wasn’t going to deny the fact that this mini-massage felt good. Come to think about it, everything about Daniel made me feel better about this day: warm hands, soft voice, strong fingers undoing kinks that I didn’t know I had. Then he found a spot at the base of my neck, and it took an effort to bite back the moan that escaped from my throat. “M-maybe when we’re done, I can let you lay your hands on me.”

“Keep talking like that and I just might.”

Oh, shit. I had to remember where we were. “Daniel.”

“Shh.” His lips moved closer to my ear. “We’re almost there.”

Copyright 2016 by Stella Marie B. Torres. Crushingly Close is available on Amazon and other retailers through Smashwords

Love, Stella

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Stella Torres

is the author of the adult contemporary romances Save the Cake, Crushingly Close, and Nine Years Away, as well as the short story “Be Creative” in the anthology Kids These Days: Stories from Luna East Vol. 1.

In her previous life, she has worked in public relations, taught English as a second language, and even attended graduate school (twice!). She has lived in Indonesia, Honolulu, and Quezon City before moving back to her hometown of Los Banos, a few hours’ drive (with traffic) from the heart of Manila.

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