It’s time toot the noisemaker! Today, on the Bold Strokes Books Webstore, my newest Village Novella, “Village Fool,” is available! You can get it in whatever e-format you need for your e-reading device (it’s a novella, so there’s no physical book), and you can do so two weeks earlier than it’ll be available everywhere else (so, if you absolutely shop at another online destination, don’t worry, it’ll be arriving a couple of Tuesdays from now).
“Village Fool” is the third in a planned quartet of holiday-themed novellas, and while the two previous were both based on Christmas, this one is a slight diversion into April Fools’ Day. I’ll let the blurb explain it:
Owen is only confident in two places: at work, supporting clients through IT woes, and when he’s sitting around a gaming table in the role of a smooth and charming bard. He’s never acted on the crush he’s had on his physiotherapist—and total cubcake—Toma. Even though Owen’s no longer Toma’s patient, and his crush hasn’t dialed down in the slightest, Owen can’t figure out how to make a move.
When a friend decides to play a prank involving Owen’s contact list, Owen spends the morning of April Fools’ day inadvertently texting smooth and charming thoughts about Toma… to Toma himself.
By the time Owen discovers the prank, things are completely out of control. Discussions of thighs and awards for the World’s Best Chest have been handed out—not to mention they’ve set an accidental coffee date—and there’s no taking that sort of thing back. When this joke finally gets told, Owen’s convinced he’ll be the punchline, but with a little luck and some nudging from his friends, the last laugh might be the best of his life.—”Village Fool,” ‘Nathan Burgoine
Poor Owen, eh? If you’ve read the other Village Novellas, you’ll get some time with Ru, Silas, Felix, and Fiona here, and if you haven’t, don’t worry. I write my Village stories with the idea that you can read them in whatever order you’d like. And if you’ve no idea what I mean by Village Novella, worry not! I can explain (or sum up). The Village is my fictionalized version of Ottawa’s Gay Village, with a heavy dash of nostalgia for what much of it was like when the local queer businesses were still flourishing. They’re meet-cute (or meet-disaster) novellas, with a heavy dose of found-family, friend-circle, nerdy-awkward, and queer community more-or-less based on my own lived experiences of being a queer guy (but especially the nerdy-awkward bit). The other Village stories are “A Little Village Magic” (found in in Of Echoes Born, my collection of queer spec-fic short fiction, and a few of the other stories are Village-adjacent), “Handmade Holidays,” “Saving the Date,” and “Faux Ho Ho.”