Designs On You
by Carrie Pack
If graphic designer Scott Parker has to design one more cupcake company logo, he might lose it. So when he is tasked with retouching photos for a big fashion client, a stunning, lanky model mesmerizes Scott and occupies his fantasies long after the assignment is finished.
When the model is assigned to one of Scott’s projects, Scott discovers that the object of his desire is nothing like what he imagined. Despite Jamie Donovan’s aloof and dismissive behavior, Scott struggles to forge a friendship with him, all the while trying to keep his attraction at bay.
Will Jamie follow through on signals that he may be interested, or will he forever be the beautiful man in the photograph, an untouchable fantasy?
“Jamie, just make sure you maintain eye contact with the camera,” Scott says. “Direct it all at the lens.” What he means is, take all that anger, desire, passion, frustration, whatever it is that is holding him back, whatever he’s feeling, and channel it into his work. Let it go. He lowers his voice and leans in so only Jamie can hear him. “Direct it all at me if you have to.”
Jamie seems to understand because he nods, his eyes fixed on Scott’s as his breathing picks up, and if it weren’t for the camera and all the lights between them, Scott would swear they’re back outside that bathroom, suspended in the second before Jamie kissed him. Then Jamie locks his gaze on the camera lens three feet from his face, determination apparent in the set of his jaw, and a hushed anticipation settles over them. Jamie blinks twice and relaxes into the posture that Scott instantly recognizes as his model’s stance; he’s ready to go.
Scott smiles and ducks behind the camera, using the viewfinder rather than the digital display. There’s an intimacy in it, seeing Jamie through the focused view of the lens, and Scott is awestruck. It’s like seeing Jamie for the first time, all of his emotions raw and his soul laid bare—and it’s nothing like the pictures Scott used to get off to. This is Jamie the person, the one who is Scott’s friend, not Jamie the model or the insane erotic fantasy that Scott had created around him. In that moment of realization, the shock of Jamie’s beauty shoots through Scott like fireworks—a sharp point of light that erupts into a shower of sparks in his chest. He holds his breath and snaps the shutter. Zach had left it on a rapid-fire setting, so he shoots about ten frames at once, catching the subtle changes in Jamie’s expression.
He glances down at the display; even at only three inches wide, he can tell the shots are what they’re looking for. Scott lifts the camera back up and smiles. “All right, Jamie, let’s try that again, and this time I want you to really take a risk. Try something new and don’t hold back.”
Let's Learn a Little about Carrie Pack:
What is your writing environment?
Wherever I happen to be at the moment inspiration strikes. Sometimes I write in bed, sometimes at the kitchen table, and I also have a desk chair that seems to help me unblock the creative flow, but really anywhere in my house. I get too distracted to try to write in a café or library, and it’s too hot outside. I always use my laptop. I can’t write by hand fast enough to get my words down, so I have to type.
Who is your perfect hero and why?
I don’t think any heroes are perfect, otherwise they’d be dull. Sometimes the antihero is more interesting because we root for them, even though they have problematic behaviors or motivations. I don’t know that I could pick a favorite, but one I have always found interesting is Alice from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass. She finds herself in this crazy, topsy-turvy world and she just sort of goes with it. She adapts. I love that about her, and it translates so well to every adaptation that I’ve seen.
What authors have caught your interest lately and why?
I’ve recently started reading books that “everyone” talks about, particularly stuff that’s immersive. I’m digging George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series; he blows my mind with the details and world-building. And I recently read Neil Gaiman’s American Gods; it was so surreal and confusing in the best way. Also, a friend turned me on to Donna Tartt; I haven’t read her latest novel yet, but I loved The Secret History.
What type of book have you always wanted to write?
Science-fiction, specifically time travel. It’s probably my favorite genre and I’ve never even attempted it before. It’s intimidating to get all the details in order, but when it’s done right, it blows your mind. I still remember reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban for the first time and just being in awe of the time loop JK Rowling created. Amazing.
Top 3 things on your bucket list?
Travel to Europe, move away from Florida, become a published author. One down; two to go.
How did you get the idea for this particular novel?
It’s loosely based on the experiences I had as a graphic designer in the early part of my career. Granted, I never fell for a hot male model, but that’s the great thing about fiction, you can reimagine reality and make it what you want.
What is your favorite scene in your new release?
The first time Jamie is actually nice to Scott. They run into each other at a club and end up dancing and drinking all night. It’s the first time we see them both happy and free, and you get to know them both a bit. I am fascinated by how our inhibitions are lowered by alcohol, and I think getting your characters drunk is a great way to strip away the façade and show your readers who they really are.
What are you working on now and when can we expect it to be available?
I’ve got an idea brewing for a novel featuring time travel. It’s still in the early stages, though, so I can’t say when it might be available.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
I love watching true crime shows like Snapped. I think it scares my husband, but I’m fascinated by how people can just lose it. It’s terrifying. I also like picking apart their attempts to cover up the crime; they do the dumbest stuff. Maybe one day I’ll write a crime novel.
What would you consider a perfect date?
Disney World. The husband and I go to Epcot all the time to “drink around the world,” which usually ends up being about three drinks. But we also like spending the day at Magic Kingdom acting like big kids.
What is one interesting fact about you that readers don’t know?
I love to bake. My specialty is sugar cookies with homemade lemon frosting. I get the lemons from a tree at my parents’ house because they’re bigger and sweeter than lemons you can buy at the store. The trick to making great sugar cookies is to roll them out on powdered sugar instead of flour. Keeps the dough from sticking, but doesn’t make them taste bitter.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
A former graphic artist, Carrie Pack turned to her early career experience as the backdrop for her first novel. She lives in Florida with her husband, where she teaches advertising writing at a local college.
Carrie will be awarding a $25 Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. A free download of an Interlude Press eBook title or an author/book swag pack (US ONLY) will be awarded to one randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter at each stop during the tour.
The more you comment, the greater your chances of winning!
Follow the tour HEREa Rafflecopter giveaway