Lynn Cahoon is a contemporary romance author with a love of hot, sexy men, real and imagined. Her heroines all have one thing in common, their strong need for independence. Or at least that’s what they think they want. Learn more about Lynn and her books at her website. -- AP
Temporary Roommates is a novella set in the Central West End of St. Louis, next to Forest Park, where the 1905 World’s Fair was held, and, down the street from the hospital where I spent the majority of 2007.
The writer handbooks all tell you to write about something you know, so when I stared out the window after being told I had breast cancer, instead of focusing on the fear of what might be, I spun a story about a nurse who needed a place to live.
As the treatments continued, I had a lot of time to think about this story. As the months passed through spring and into summer, I, like my heroine yearned to be outside. Maybe not running like Annie enjoys, but at least walking, hearing the birds and feeling the sun on my face.
I’ve been cancer free now for five years and although I still haven’t taken up running, I’m a lot like my spunky nurse heroine, always trying to find my way in the world without help. But I’ve found that taking care of each other is a calling. So I wanted to share my top five gifts for any friend undergoing cancer treatments.
1-Offer to help. No, scratch that, don’t just offer, show up to clean their house, or drive them to chemo, or even sit and talk on the porch.
2- Ease the boredom. I tell everyone I know the best part of cancer was time to read. If your friend isn’t a reader, crosswords are great, too. Just something to pass the time while waiting for the next appointment.
3- Food. As time passed, the chemo made food less appetizing. So I ate a lot of mashed potatoes and ice cream. Find out what your friend loves, then stock their fridge.
4- Be an exercise buddy. Studies have shown some advantages for people who exercise through the months of treatment. Added strength, energy, and maybe even just a healthy dose of the feel good stuff that floods your brain after working out. (Be sure to clear plans with your friend’s medical professionals.)
5-Offer to take your friend to their appointments. I found myself wondering about the future way too often when I was alone. Having someone there kept me in the moment and focused on getting better.
Annie Baxter, my heroine in Temporary Roommates is given doggie duty, escorting a puppy through the halls to meet patients. I tend to agree with my character, there’s nothing quite so healing as a big wet puppy kiss.
Blurb: Annie Baxter has her dream job. Now, all she needs is a cheap apartment close to the hospital. Troy Saunders knows his life as an intern is all about the long hours. He doesn’t have time to play doctor to some Nurse Barbie. So when his sister finds a great apartment walking distance to work and next to the best running paths in the city, he’s sold. Two leasing agents, two prospective renters, one apartment. Can they co-exist without fireworks?