I must always be hungry when I write because I can’t create one of my small-town contemporary romances without including all sorts of food and drink. Running the Red Light, book #2 in my Texas Nights series, is no exception.
Some of the foods are inherently sexy…like Butterfinger™ pie.
She might be able to resist him in a suit and tie, but with him dressed in jeans and old running shoes, she was toast. The crunchy black-edged kind that always seemed to come out of her oven.
“Thought you might like this.” He handed her a small pink-and-green sack.
Inside, she found a triangle-shaped container and a fork. Toast? She was crumbs.
“It’s Butterfinger pie.”
She closed her eyes and moaned because she could already taste the sweet, creamy crunch on her tongue.
Jamie cleared his throat and she realized she’d been standing there with the bag clutched to her chest. “Umm…you want to have that now?” he asked.
God, no. Not unless he wanted to watch her have a food-gasm.
Other foods are a statement about setting and culture, like chicken-fried chicken. Yep, it’s a real dish. Almost as popular as chicken-fried steak in Texas and served the same way—with mashed potatoes, cream gravy and fried okra.
Jamie watched Roxanne grab her steak knife and saw into her chicken-fried chicken like she might be imagining it was his heart she was carving up. Something in her face mirrored her description of the old Victorian. A woman with determination, dedication, and the drive to create something beautiful and strong from what looked like a pile of kindling to him.
In my stories, food often helps indicate a character’s state of mind.
“Brody’s back,” he said, looking Cameron straight in the face. “I saw him in Houston earlier this week.”
Cameron’s eyes went flat, like a deceptively calm lake with a monster just beneath the surface. “You are shitting me.”
“I wish.” Jamie vaulted out of the car and paced over to the dorm fridge tucked under the workbench. He grabbed a soda and downed half in two swallows, but the cold drink didn’t calm the flames igniting his gut. “Wouldn’t have believed it myself, but he was standing in front of me.”
Cameron shot to his feet. “Did that SOB come around asking you for money?”
“No. The whole thing was a fluke. Caroline Webster and I were at the opera earlier this week.” Cameron and Beck made skunk-smell faces, but Jamie continued, “This guy in a janitor’s uniform caught my eye as we were leaving. I made some half-assed excuse to Caroline and dumped her in the lobby while I dragged dear old Dad out of sight.”
“Why didn’t you just act like you didn’t see him?”
Jamie flexed his fingers on the soda can and studied his brother. “What would you have done?”
Cameron ran a hand over his hair where oil and sweat worked like maximum-strength gel, cementing the dark strands into mild-electric-shock style. “Kicked his sorry ass.”
“In a suit? In front of your date?”
Cameron’s fists clenched and unclenched, the veins shifting under his skin. “What did you say to him?”
“I don’t completely remember.” The back of his neck burned. “But I gave him some cash.”
“You heard me.” Jamie threw his nearly empty drink against the wall. Droplets of soda rained down like black tears.
Do you notice the food an author includes in her stories? Do you think it makes a richer experience for the reader? (I’ll give away a copy of Personal Assets–Texas Nights Book #1 to one commenter!) Also – see the Rafflecopter form below for my Share & Win giveaway!
Kelsey Browning writes sass kickin’ love stories and cozy Southern mysteries. Originally from a Texas town smaller than the ones she writes about, Kelsey has also lived in the Middle East and Los Angeles, proving she’s either adventurous or downright nuts. These days, she hangs out in northeast Georgia with Tech Guy, Smarty Boy, Bad Dog and Pharaoh, a Canine Companions for Independence puppy. She’s currently at work on the next book in her Texas Nights series and The Granny Series. Give her a shout at Kelsey@KelseyBrowning.com or drop by www.KelseyBrowning.com. For info on her upcoming releases, subscribe to her Sass Kickin’ News.