Picks & Pucks

on Apr 17, 2014 by Teegan Loy

When I asked my gracious host, Michael, what I should write about, he suggested I discuss my main character. I decided to let Justin tell his story.

My name is Justin Corrin. I’m about 5’11”, the same height as Olympic figure skating champion, Brian Boitano. I didn’t set out to be a figure skater. I originally started in the world of hockey, where I was considered on the smaller side. Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins is 6’9”. Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks is listed at 5’11”, but that’s probably when he’s wearing his skates, so I had a shot at the pros.

My story started when I was around fifteen years old, when I took up figure skating on the sly. My sister had been mouthing off to me during her lessons, so I told her figure skating looked simple. After about fifteen minutes, I could do an axel. My sister was not pleased. Her coach was over the moon. My mother didn’t know what to think.

My mom and I decided to keep the skating lessons a secret from my dad. In hindsight, it probably wasn’t a good idea, but he didn’t handle the ‘Hey Dad, I’m gay’ conversation very well and telling him I wanted to figure skate instead of play hockey would have been terrible. But my hand was forced, the day my mom died in an automobile accident on her way to pick me up at the rink.

My dad told me to give up skating. I gave up hockey. I chose picks over pucks and alienated my entire remaining family. The only thing I could do was run away to California to train. Unfortunately, my demons followed me. Now I’ve come home to face the demons. I didn’t know how many demons I carried until I flew home. Some had to ride on the wing of the airplane because there wasn’t enough room in the baggage compartment. I know it sounds crazy, but I’m going to beat them. Maybe.

Most of my demons involve my family, but a few I carry have to do with my terrible choices in guys. I have a nasty habit of getting involved with hockey boys. They’re lovely to look at, but horrible to date. My brother is a hockey player who thinks I’m a total waste of space for choosing figure skating over hockey. My dad is in his camp. It didn’t help matters that he’s a division one head hockey coach and I’d been getting looks from coaches since I was twelve years old. I do like the game of hockey, but figure skating is like a drug I can’t give up.

Picks & Pucks is available from Dreamspinner Press in ebook or paperback.

You can find me, Teegan Loy, on the Dreamspinner Blog on April 21, otherwise known as release day. Please come visit. I have no idea what I’ll be writing about but there will be give-aways! https://dreamspinnerpress.com/blog/

Thanks again, Michael, for having me on your blog.

Picks & Pucks

Rising men’s figure skating star, Justin Corrin, is coming home to train for the upcoming season and face his demons. The last thing Justin needs is to fall in love with a hockey player. Instead of getting rid of his demons, Justin is collecting more. He tries desperately to control his growing feelings for CJ Daly, but finds being with CJ keeps his nightmares away.

Justin isn’t the only one with problems, and hidden fears and secrets threaten to separate the two. With the pressure mounting, CJ starts to pull away, and Justin doesn’t know why. His skating suffers, and he decides to stop wasting his time on love and focus on winning the nationals.

If Justin can destroy his demons, he might have a chance for happiness on and off the ice. But if the demons win, Justin’s life could be ruined.

Find It

Dreamspinner Press
Excerpt

The wind kicked up a few dead leaves, whipping them around my feet. I picked one up and crushed it in my fingers.

The demons took my moment of weakness and swooped down on me, bringing the picks and pucks memory to the big screen in my brain. I didn’t want to remember, but the demons held my eyelids open and forced me to watch.

One of the worst things about the night was the snowstorm that had kicked up out of nowhere. It was late in the year for a storm, but not unheard of in this area of the country. The howling winds and swirling snow reminded me of the night my mother didn’t show up at the rink. I had waited outside for her until my entire body was one big chunk of ice, watching as cars passed by, not slowing down. I tried to call her cell phone, but it kept going straight to voicemail. The memory made me sick to my stomach. And now I was waiting for Eli to pick me up in the same sort of the weather that had killed my mother.

He shouldn’t be out in this shit, but I had no one else to take me home. My dad was deep into hockey playoffs and busy with his team. Jack was with his own hockey team, and Janae was at some skating competition. I should have walked home from the arena.

Unwanted tears froze in my eyelashes and on my face as I tried to blink them away. I dug my phone out of my pocket, ready to punch in his number, when headlights lit up the area around me.

He shouted at me to get in the car, and I was so relieved I could hardly think. When he smiled at me, I started to shake. He laid his hand on my thigh and a sob escaped from my throat. He must have known what was wrong, because he grabbed my hand and squeezed tightly.

He put the car in gear and drove home, not releasing my hand until we pulled into my driveway. The demons whispered foul things in my ear as more tears slid down my cheeks. I tried to say good night and thank him for the ride, but he followed me into the house, insisting on sleeping over.

My dad met us at the door, scaring the shit out of me. The team couldn’t get out of town because the freeway had been shut down. I expected him to tell me he was glad I was home safe and sound. Instead, he shouted at me, grabbed my hockey bag out of Eli’s hand, and unzipped it with a violence that made me shrink back against the wall.

He took my hockey skates and tossed them to the ground. The figure skates soon joined the hockey skates. My dad ranted and raved about what I thought I was hoping to accomplish by wasting valuable training time messing around with figure skating.

Eli had tried to interrupt my dad’s rant, but Dad waved him off and told him it was none of his fucking business. Eli stood his ground and soon the two of them were screaming about me.

I’d finally yelled for both of them to shut the fuck up. That sentence shut my dad up, and Eli squeezed my arm so hard, I had finger-shaped bruises for a week.

I remembered all the words and his reactions like it was yesterday.

“I can’t do this anymore,” I said softly.

“Do what?” my dad shouted.

“I can’t keep playing hockey and skating. I have to give one of them up.” I already knew what I wanted to do. It was just a matter of getting the words out of my mouth.

“That’s a good idea,” my dad said. Apparently, he thought I would choose hockey. I couldn’t blame him for hoping. I’d been getting calls from the top Division I recruiters in the nation since I was fifteen. He had even toyed with the idea of trying to sign me with his team, but my dad had coached me when I was a little guy. It didn’t work then, and it wouldn’t work now.

“I’ll pay this bill, but then you tell your coach you’re finished.” He kicked the figure skates and shook his head.

“I’m not quitting skating. I’m quitting hockey.”

Eli gasped and gripped me tighter. The vein in my dad’s neck grew and pulsed violently. His face turned bright red, and he snorted. Eli pulled me toward the stairs. I wanted to run outside and never look back.

“You can’t be serious,” he shouted. “Do you know what the fuck you’re throwing away?”

I shrugged and let him shout about skill and money and my future. He made sure I knew he thought I was stupid.

“I’m a really good figure skater,” I said. “Ask my coach, or better yet, come watch me. Look, Dad, I know you don’t approve of my choices or me, but my heart is embedded in the ice. My dreams just don’t come with a stick and a puck.”

My dad huffed and kicked at the skates again. He looked like he wanted to chop them up into little tiny pieces.

“This is ridiculous,” he grumbled.

“It’s all I have left of Mom, so I’m choosing picks over pucks, Dad. And if you don’t want to support my figure skating, I’ll find a way to do it on my own.”

Picks over pucks. My dad hadn’t talked to me for three weeks after that fight, but he continued to pay for my skating lessons. I still don’t think he’d ever forgiven me for choosing skating over hockey. Most of the time, I knew I’d made the right decision, but every once in a while, when I was having a shitty day, I questioned my motivations. And unknown to my father, I still laced up the hockey skates and played a few pick-up games here and there.

A horn honked and the demons scattered from my thoughts, taking the images of the past with them.

When I asked my gracious host, Michael, what I should write about, he suggested I discuss my main character. I decided to let Justin tell his story.

My name is Justin Corrin. I’m about 5’11”, the same height as Olympic figure skating champion, Brian Boitano. I didn’t set out to be a figure skater. I originally started in the world of hockey, where I was considered on the smaller side. Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins is 6’9”. Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks is listed at 5’11”, but that’s probably when he’s wearing his skates, so I had a shot at the pros.

My story started when I was around fifteen years old, when I took up figure skating on the sly. My sister had been mouthing off to me during her lessons, so I told her figure skating looked simple. After about fifteen minutes, I could do an axel. My sister was not pleased. Her coach was over the moon. My mother didn’t know what to think.

My mom and I decided to keep the skating lessons a secret from my dad. In hindsight, it probably wasn’t a good idea, but he didn’t handle the ‘Hey Dad, I’m gay’ conversation very well and telling him I wanted to figure skate instead of play hockey would have been terrible. But my hand was forced, the day my mom died in an automobile accident on her way to pick me up at the rink.

My dad told me to give up skating. I gave up hockey. I chose picks over pucks and alienated my entire remaining family. The only thing I could do was run away to California to train. Unfortunately, my demons followed me. Now I’ve come home to face the demons. I didn’t know how many demons I carried until I flew home. Some had to ride on the wing of the airplane because there wasn’t enough room in the baggage compartment. I know it sounds crazy, but I’m going to beat them. Maybe.

Most of my demons involve my family, but a few I carry have to do with my terrible choices in guys. I have a nasty habit of getting involved with hockey boys. They’re lovely to look at, but horrible to date. My brother is a hockey player who thinks I’m a total waste of space for choosing figure skating over hockey. My dad is in his camp. It didn’t help matters that he’s a division one head hockey coach and I’d been getting looks from coaches since I was twelve years old. I do like the game of hockey, but figure skating is like a drug I can’t give up.

Picks & Pucks is available from Dreamspinner Press in ebook or paperback.

You can find me, Teegan Loy, on the Dreamspinner Blog on April 21, otherwise known as release day. Please come visit. I have no idea what I’ll be writing about but there will be give-aways! https://dreamspinnerpress.com/blog/

Thanks again, Michael, for having me on your blog.


Picks & Pucks

Rising men’s figure skating star, Justin Corrin, is coming home to train for the upcoming season and face his demons. The last thing Justin needs is to fall in love with a hockey player. Instead of getting rid of his demons, Justin is collecting more. He tries desperately to control his growing feelings for CJ Daly, but finds being with CJ keeps his nightmares away.

Justin isn’t the only one with problems, and hidden fears and secrets threaten to separate the two. With the pressure mounting, CJ starts to pull away, and Justin doesn’t know why. His skating suffers, and he decides to stop wasting his time on love and focus on winning the nationals.

If Justin can destroy his demons, he might have a chance for happiness on and off the ice. But if the demons win, Justin’s life could be ruined.


Excerpt from Picks & Pucks:

The wind kicked up a few dead leaves, whipping them around my feet. I picked one up and crushed it in my fingers.

The demons took my moment of weakness and swooped down on me, bringing the picks and pucks memory to the big screen in my brain. I didn’t want to remember, but the demons held my eyelids open and forced me to watch.

One of the worst things about the night was the snowstorm that had kicked up out of nowhere. It was late in the year for a storm, but not unheard of in this area of the country. The howling winds and swirling snow reminded me of the night my mother didn’t show up at the rink. I had waited outside for her until my entire body was one big chunk of ice, watching as cars passed by, not slowing down. I tried to call her cell phone, but it kept going straight to voicemail. The memory made me sick to my stomach. And now I was waiting for Eli to pick me up in the same sort of the weather that had killed my mother.

He shouldn’t be out in this shit, but I had no one else to take me home. My dad was deep into hockey playoffs and busy with his team. Jack was with his own hockey team, and Janae was at some skating competition. I should have walked home from the arena.

Unwanted tears froze in my eyelashes and on my face as I tried to blink them away. I dug my phone out of my pocket, ready to punch in his number, when headlights lit up the area around me.

He shouted at me to get in the car, and I was so relieved I could hardly think. When he smiled at me, I started to shake. He laid his hand on my thigh and a sob escaped from my throat. He must have known what was wrong, because he grabbed my hand and squeezed tightly.

He put the car in gear and drove home, not releasing my hand until we pulled into my driveway. The demons whispered foul things in my ear as more tears slid down my cheeks. I tried to say good night and thank him for the ride, but he followed me into the house, insisting on sleeping over.

My dad met us at the door, scaring the shit out of me. The team couldn’t get out of town because the freeway had been shut down. I expected him to tell me he was glad I was home safe and sound. Instead, he shouted at me, grabbed my hockey bag out of Eli’s hand, and unzipped it with a violence that made me shrink back against the wall.

He took my hockey skates and tossed them to the ground. The figure skates soon joined the hockey skates. My dad ranted and raved about what I thought I was hoping to accomplish by wasting valuable training time messing around with figure skating.

Eli had tried to interrupt my dad’s rant, but Dad waved him off and told him it was none of his fucking business. Eli stood his ground and soon the two of them were screaming about me.

I’d finally yelled for both of them to shut the fuck up. That sentence shut my dad up, and Eli squeezed my arm so hard, I had finger-shaped bruises for a week.

I remembered all the words and his reactions like it was yesterday.

“I can’t do this anymore,” I said softly.

“Do what?” my dad shouted.

“I can’t keep playing hockey and skating. I have to give one of them up.” I already knew what I wanted to do. It was just a matter of getting the words out of my mouth.

“That’s a good idea,” my dad said. Apparently, he thought I would choose hockey. I couldn’t blame him for hoping. I’d been getting calls from the top Division I recruiters in the nation since I was fifteen. He had even toyed with the idea of trying to sign me with his team, but my dad had coached me when I was a little guy. It didn’t work then, and it wouldn’t work now.

“I’ll pay this bill, but then you tell your coach you’re finished.” He kicked the figure skates and shook his head.

“I’m not quitting skating. I’m quitting hockey.”

Eli gasped and gripped me tighter. The vein in my dad’s neck grew and pulsed violently. His face turned bright red, and he snorted. Eli pulled me toward the stairs. I wanted to run outside and never look back.

“You can’t be serious,” he shouted. “Do you know what the fuck you’re throwing away?”

I shrugged and let him shout about skill and money and my future. He made sure I knew he thought I was stupid.

“I’m a really good figure skater,” I said. “Ask my coach, or better yet, come watch me. Look, Dad, I know you don’t approve of my choices or me, but my heart is embedded in the ice. My dreams just don’t come with a stick and a puck.”

My dad huffed and kicked at the skates again. He looked like he wanted to chop them up into little tiny pieces.

“This is ridiculous,” he grumbled.

“It’s all I have left of Mom, so I’m choosing picks over pucks, Dad. And if you don’t want to support my figure skating, I’ll find a way to do it on my own.”

Picks over pucks. My dad hadn’t talked to me for three weeks after that fight, but he continued to pay for my skating lessons. I still don’t think he’d ever forgiven me for choosing skating over hockey. Most of the time, I knew I’d made the right decision, but every once in a while, when I was having a shitty day, I questioned my motivations. And unknown to my father, I still laced up the hockey skates and played a few pick-up games here and there.

A horn honked and the demons scattered from my thoughts, taking the images of the past with them.

Copyright © 2014 Teegan Loy. All rights reserved.


Find Picks & Pucks:


Find Teegan Loy:


1 Comment

  1. […] also over at Michael Rupured’s Blog today. There’s an excerpt from the […]

Add a Comment