Nicole should’ve known better than to hook up with an exotic dancer. Charles Hester, aka Dripping Chocolate, is mouth-wateringly fine, but he came with two baby-mamas, a prison rap sheet and plenty more drama. Charles swears he’s on the right track now, and it’s not like Nicole doesn’t have baggage of her own. She’s struggling to raise three children, and one of her exes might be a stalker. Can Charles and Nicole find happiness, or is their wild ride destined for failure? Anything’s possible when you give in to the possibility of true love…
Nicole’s heart thudded as well. She couldn’t believe he didn’t walk away when they recognized each other. Was he seriously hitting on her? Charles was a fine man (yes, Lawd!), but she already saw him naked, for Christ’s sake. He pushed his thing between her legs. Nicole was drunk that night, but she remembered touching and squeezing it before she pushed him away. You can’t go out with someone after touching their dick, can you?
If it wasn’t for Charles Jr., she would’ve told him to get lost. Nicole had a strong opinion about strippers, but the fact that this one brought his son to Walmart with him meant something. He wasn’t a sex-craved drug addict, totally void of responsibilities. Or maybe he was, but today at least he cared enough about his son to want to spend time with him. That already put Dripping Chocolate leagues above other deadbeats she knew, like Clifford.
“I’m Nicole,” she said. “Is this your son?” She looked down at the boy, and he eyed her curiously.
“Yeah, this is Charles Jr.,” Charles said. “He’s five. Is that your boy?”
“Yes,” Nicole said.
“I’m almost six,” Charles Jr. said.
Shawn kept quiet.
“I, uh… I’ma let you get back to your shopping,” Charles said. “But I wanted to stop and say hi. You looked like somebody I know, but I can see you ain’t her.”
Nicole nodded. “Okay.”
Charles turned and his conscious kicked him in the ass. What the hell’s wrong with you? Charles turned back to her and smiled nervously. “You, uh… You think I could have your number? Maybe we can go out sometimes…”
He felt like an idiot. This wasn’t him at all. Charles, aka Dripping Chocolate, was as smooth as a cup of warm cocoa. He was a ladies’ man. They came to him. They piled up at his stage every weekend. He didn’t like how Nicole stole all of his confidence, but thankfully she gave it back just as easily.
“Okay. Do you got a cellphone?”
Keith Thomas Walker, known as the Master of Romantic Suspense and Urban Fiction, is the author of ten novels, including Fixin’ Tyrone, Jewell and the Dapper Dan and Dripping Chocolate. Keith enjoys reading, poetry and music of all genres. Originally from Fort Worth, Keith is a graduate of Texas Wesleyan University. He currently works in administration at one of Texas’ largest hospitals.
Get to Know Keith:
Q: What’s your latest release?
Dripping Chocolate. This is a romance, one of the first true romance’s I’ve written in a while. It’s about a man named Charles who takes a job as an exotic dancer when he gets out of prison. It’s about a woman named Nicole who already has way too much going on and has no room in her life for a love affair with a stripper. But this book is about a lot more than that. All of my books are.
Q: How did you get started writing?
I started writing short stories and poetry when I was young, around the fourth grade. I was never pushed to do so, I just enjoyed being creative. My fifth grade teacher was the first to notice and encourage my – well I don’t want to say it was “talent,” but she did. It was nice to have the recognition and attention for something positive.
Q: What/who influenced your writing?
I was influenced to write by some of the authors I was reading at the time. I really enjoyed Walter Dean Myers, and Shel Silverstein influenced my poetry. But the fiction writer I was in most awe of was Stephen King. I probably shouldn’t have been reading his books before the age of 15, but I did, and he opened my eyes to the fine art of story-telling. Building suspense is the most important thing I learned from Stephen King.
Q: How many books have you written?
I have written sixteen books so far. The bulk of them have not been published yet, but I’m working on that. Most publishers don’t believe an author should release more than two books a year.
Q: Which one of your works are you most proud of?
I think I’m most proud of a book called “Blood for Isaiah.” It’s a story about the aftermath of a ten year old’s murder. I mostly write romance novels, but this is definitely not one of them. I can’t divulge too much about the story, but I plan to publish it in 2013. Blood for Isaiah is my longest book. The problem will be getting it down to a marketable size without losing too much about the story.
Q: What advice would you give other authors/writers?
Be wary. Once you sign on the dotted line, most of your “intellectual property” doesn’t belong to you anymore. Also do not self-publish your first book. Yes self-publishers get rich and famous all the time, but when you consider how many people self-publish every year, the odds of success are slim. The easiest way to get famous (but probably not rich) is to allow a reputable publisher to distribute your book across the nation, if not the world.
Q: What is your ultimate goal as a writer?
My first goal is to publish all of my books and make a living writing. I would like to quit my day job. That’s my American dream. My ultimate goal is to get more people reading. Especially black men. Even if you can jump from one half of the basketball court to the other, education is the only guaranteed way to ensure you will live a better lifestyle than your parents – and hopefully your children will enjoy more prosperity than you, and so on.
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