Monday, January 11, 2010

Fisherman by Day, Romance Hero by Night

When I saw that Happily Ever After was devoting a week to offbeat careers, I jumped at the chance to talk about Dustin McDougal, the hero of my recent red-hot contemporary, “Doll.” Dustin, you see, is a commercial fisherman. He lives on an island in Maine, where he makes his living taking his boat out in all kinds of nasty weather and pulling lobsters from the ocean.

What’s heroic about a fisherman, you might wonder? Fishermen don’t risk their lives to stop the bad guys. They don’t plunge daringly into jeopardy (although fishing is actually one of the most dangerous professions.) They’re hard-working, not glamorous.

I’ve always found fishermen fascinating. They have to be physically tough to handle rough seas and unpredictable weather. They’re independent and self-sufficient, quick-witted and resourceful. When a captain takes his boat out for a fishing trip that could last weeks, he has to know how to fix everything on that boat—with the possible exception of the electronics. If they break down, he has to know how to survive without them. Fishermen know how to cook for themselves, entertain themselves, and get along with other people in close quarters. Most fishermen I know are fantastic cooks. If you’ve never had fresh tuna wrapped in foil with herbs and cooked on an engine manifold … well, it’s bliss. Many play music or do some kind of craft that helps pass the long hours waiting for fish. I know a lobsterman who could have been a professional flutist. And another who knits the most gorgeous sweaters you ever saw.

Wait, a hero who knits? Bear with me here. Fishermen think for themselves, live by their own lights, make their own way in the world. They tell it like it is, roll with the punches, live with the constant risk of injury or death. They’re great storytellers (another skill honed by hours at sea.) Working so close to nature at her most dangerous gives them a raw, bone-deep appreciation for the gift of being alive.

Besides, they’re hot. Don’t believe me? Here’s a quick ADULT excerpt from a scene from “Doll” that takes place on Dustin’s boat.

While Dustin tied the dinghy to the mooring, Chloe admired the orderly deck of the Lisa May. All the ropes were neatly coiled, five-gallon buckets stacked upside down, not a speck of fish gore anywhere to be seen. Inside the cabin, a watch cap hung neatly from a hook in the wheelhouse. Dustin had been wearing that watch cap when she’d seen him from the ferry. On impulse, she sniffed it. Salt, diesel, fresh air, and that indefinable scent of Dustin. Seaweed, or brine. The way the god of the sea must smell.

As Dustin ducked through the opening of the wheelhouse, she turned to him and staggered slightly.

“Careful, there,” he said, grabbing her arm. The boat rocked gently back and forth. The motion reminded her of the stroking of the oars, and the same rhythm began deep inside her.

“I want you, Dustin,” she said. “Where can we go?”

“Why go anywhere?” He looked amused. “No one can see us in here. And I’m so hard right now, I don’t think I could take another boat ride. Feel.” He put her hand on the front of his oilskins, and the lump sent a thrill through her. She squeezed it and saw the fire in his eyes. Crowding close to her, he pressed her against the wheel. “You know, there’s something I’ve always wanted to see. Will you let me?”


“Don’t you want to know what it is?”

“I can’t wait to see.” It was true, her heart was beating fast, and her knees felt weak. With Dustin, whatever it was, she knew she was going to enjoy it. He put his hands to her front and removed her bright yellow jacket. Underneath, suspenders held up her oilskin trousers. These he slipped off her shoulders in order to remove her sweatshirt, leaving her naked from the waist up. He pulled the suspenders back up over her breasts, which pushed against the webbed fabric. One suspender covered a nipple, which immediately rose into a peak.

“Oh, yeah. Your skin against the suspenders, and the way they push your breasts together…mmm. You have no idea how sexy you are right now.” But she could hear it in his voice, and see it in the appreciative way he gazed at her body. Moisture sprang between her legs. It felt good to know she was turning him on. He wasn’t looking at her like an object, but like a woman, desirable and sensuous. She ran her hands up her torso, and hooked her thumbs under the suspenders. One of them slipped from her grasp, and snapped against her nipple. The thrill of it shocked her.

“Did that feel good?” he asked. She gave a slight nod, amazed that it was so. He took both suspenders and pulled them away from her chest. With his thumbs, he rubbed her nipples until they stood like proud soldiers then let go of the suspenders. This time, the sensation was so intense, she nearly came. Swaying against the wheel, she cried out.

“You’re killing me, Chloe.” He shoved the suspenders aside to feast on her nipples, grunting as he attacked with mouth and fingers. Chloe leaned back against the wheel and let the waves of electric pleasure take over her body. Little moans filled the air. Relentlessly, he sucked her breasts, tugging so deeply at the nipples she thought they might burst. Gripping his thick hair, she thrust her breasts forward in avid invitation, urging him on. She couldn’t get enough of his urgency, his strength.

“Fuck me, fuck me,” she whispered. “Fuck me hard.”

Click here to buy “DOLL,” available now from Samhain Publishing.

Juniper Bell is an author of red-hot contemporary erotic romance. Visit her at or , or follow her on Twitter (@AuthorJuniper).


Lindsay Townsend said...

Wonderful excerpt, Juniper! Fascinating insight into a very different world. Thank you so much for sharing!

You're right - fishermen are sexy!

Bekki Lynn said...

Hot excerpt, Juniper.

Thanks so much for sharing the fisherman with us.

Are there different types of boats they use for the different types of fish they catch? Say those who go out for tuna versus shrimp.

Savanna Kougar said...

Wow! Now that's my kind of he-man fisherman, especially if he can cook and knit great sweaters.
Self-sufficiency in a man always turns me on. Not to mention erotic creativity.

Kaye Manro said...

Great excerpt! I happen to love fishermen! My first novel's hero was also a loberstman. Great insight into that world. Those guys can be such hunks, with a sweet side too.

Jane Richardson, writer said...

Well, hey, Juniper, I live in a town with a big fishing tradition but I never thought of them quite like that.....mabe I'll have to spend a little more time by the shore! ;-) Very neat blog indeed!

Jane x

Juniper Bell said...

Thanks Lindsay, I'm glad you find them sexy too!

Bekki - There are lots of different fishing boats, for sure. The shrimpers tend to be to bigger boats with big crews. for Tuna, it depends on the method, whether it's harpooning or longlining. One of the fisherman who inspired Dustin is a tuna harpooner ... now there's a he-man! ;) Thanks for asking! (Now I have to go do more research. LOL.)

Juniper Bell said...

Savanna, I'm so glad you agree ... There's just something about a man who can cook for himself that turns me on! Especially if they're creative in the bedroom. Yum!

Kaye, another lobsterman hero, how awesome! I have to check it out ... What's the title?

Jane, it's true there are fishermen who don't quite live up to the hero standard! LOL. But then again ... there are those gems out there, just hanging out at the shore... ;)

Chelle Cordero said...

Very enjoyable excerpt Juniper. I find it very sexy when a man is not confined to social dictates and does his own thing - even if we don't often see hunky men knitting sweaters and such, lol.