Join Prism Book Alliance® as Jeff Adams goes Outside the Margins today.
It’s been an exciting month as Hat Trick 3: Penalty Shot came out at the start. It was a fun, yet challenging book, to write and it’s been a blast talking about it over the course of the month on a blog tour. I decided to use my “Outside the Margins” post this month to talk a bit more about the book, as well as offer up an excerpt and a giveaway.
Hat Trick 3 is the final novel in the trilogy that chronicles Simon and Alex’s relationship, which began when they were seniors in high school and continues in book three as they contemplate life after college. As their final year begins at the University of Michigan, they are eager to make plans for the future but also realize they need to savor their final season playing hockey as well as time around their friends.
Simon’s major is social work, and that’s had him doing work-study at the local LGBT Community Center since he was a sophomore. With Alex and him set up to be coaches for a new youth hockey team, Simon meets a potential player who it turns out is transgender. I’ve been considering adding a transgender teen into the Hat Trick series since book two, but wanted to make sure I could create a good, believable story.
I was able to take the plunge thanks to a friend, Skyler Cruz. I got to know Skyler while we were teammates playing on a team with the New York City Gay Hockey Association. He’s a social worker, and is actually the inspiration behind Simon going into that field, and he’s also transgender. Skyler was kind enough to let me ask questions about his trans journey as well as more general questions about what life could be like for a transgender teen. He was very generous with his time, including answering random questions while I was writing, helping me to craft realistic dialogue for Simon as he interacted with TJ and other characters. Skyler also read the finished chapters so I’d know if I’d done a good job or not. I was glad he gave a thumbs up to what I did with TJ.
TJ was a good challenge to give Simon as he needs to make some career choices with school coming to an end. TJ also creates other interesting scenarios, simply by his presence (and you’ll have to read the book to find out what those are). I liked being able to push characters into some new territory, while giving TJ a nice story arc along the way. It’s likely TJ will return in another story as well as since I’m considering another book focusing on the new hockey team that’s formed in Hat Trick 3. Hopefully that will surface sometime in 2016.
The excerpt below is Simon’s introduction to TJ. It gives you a nice glimpse of TJ as well as Simon in both his role as coach and social worker/counselor. Meanwhile, don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway where you’ve got the chance to win one ebook from the Hat Trick series (your choice, so you can start from the beginning if it’s new for you or grab any other installment that you’d like).
Title: Hat Trick 3: Penalty Shot
Author: Jeff Adams
Publisher: JMS Books
Publication Date: 09/06/2015
Genre: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, New Adult
Life has a sneaky way of checking you into the boards.
The relationship that began when Simon Roberts and Alex Miller were in high school is about to cross another milestone as they begin their final year at the University of Michigan. It’s been four amazing years of love, friends and hockey.
Now it’s time to help pay it forward.
When a talented sixteen-year-old goalie is denied placement on a youth league roster, he asks Simon and Alex to coach a team of LGBT youth and allies. With the determination, hard work, and help of an amazing group of friends, they rally the team towards a winning season.
In the final installment of the best selling Hat Trick trilogy, Simon and Alex find everything they’ve worked so hard for is in jeopardy. When they’re thrown a devastating curve ball, the far-reaching implications put their entire future together on the line.
I loved it. My responsibilities at the LGBT Community Center had expanded over time, but I made sure I worked the front desk at least once a week. I enjoyed seeing everyone come and go, and talking to people I didn’t see as part of my regular duties. Sometimes I’d talk to a visitor only briefly to direct them to a meeting room, but sometimes it was someone who’d gotten up the nerve to come in for the first time and didn’t know what to do next. It would be my job to guide them.
Other times sitting here was a perfect moment to catch up with some of my favorite people, like Judy and Lisa. They were in their late twenties, met at Michigan, and still lived in the area. They volunteered in the cafe for a shift or two a week and I loved talking to them. They gave me some ideas of what Alex and I could be like in another five or six years, super tight and obviously in love.
Today they showed me pictures from their Mackinac Island getaway, which looked very fun. I’d just returned to my homework reading when someone else came to the desk. This guy I’d seen around, but we’d never talked.
“Hi.” He looked unsure as he stood there, so I smiled, hoping I could put him at ease. “Can I help you?”
“Uhm, hi,” the young man said, stumbling over his words. “You’re Simon, right? Play for the Wolverines?”
It was hard to tell since the desk was on a raised platform, but he seemed slightly shorter than me. He had a great mop of super dark curly hair and brown eyes. While his expression was serious, his voice was higher than I expected.
“Yes and yes,” I said.
“Cool. It’s so great to meet you. I love watching you play. Anyway, I figure if anyone knows what’s up with the hockey flyer I saw upstairs it’d be you. Is it for real?”
Talking hockey seemed to help him relax.
“It’s for real. Scottie’s forming the team because he was rejected from playing on a league team. He’s a good goalie and wants to build a team for the season. You play?”
“I haven’t for a couple years. Before that I played, about six years, as a wing and did pretty good.”
“Why’d you stop?”
He took a deep breath and looked anxious. He should know it was safe to talk to anyone here.
“Once I started identifying as a guy, neither side would take me.” I nodded. I wasn’t expecting this answer, but it was good he knew he could share this with me. “I figured I wouldn’t play again until after my surgery in a few years. But this. Well. Maybe it’s an opportunity.”
“It would be great to get you out there with us. Have you talked to Scottie yet?”
He gave me a questioning look. Maybe he wasn’t used to people not saying something when he revealed his trans status. Maybe he thought I’d go down that path first, but I wanted to engage him on his original question first.
“Us? You’re playing?”
“I’m a little old to play in youth league,” I said with a chuckle. “My boyfriend and I are coaching the team once Scottie gets it together.”
This guy was a thinker. His lips were moving slightly, as if he was talking to himself. I watched, not wanting to interrupt his train of thought.
“Sorry,” he finally said after the silence had stretched on. “Just considering the possibilities.”
About Jeff Adams
Jeff Adams is the author of the Hat Trick series of young adult/new adult stories. He’s also the author of several m/m romance shorts. Jeff and his husband, Will, live in the rural peace of Northern California. Besides writing about hockey in many of his stories, he covers the Detroit Red Wings, and reviews books that feature gay hockey players, for PuckBuddys.com (http://www.PuckBuddys.com). You can learn all about Jeff’s writing at jeffadamswrites.com (http://www.jeffadamswrites.com/). You can also follow him on Twitter @hockeyguynyc https://twitter.com/hockeyguynyc). and sign up for his email list (http://eepurl.com/7TJC9) to get the latest updates.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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