Author Spotlight ~ Londra Laine

A warm welcome to today’s Spotlight Author, Londra Laine.

Thank you for joining us and sharing more about yourself.

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT BACKGROUND

 

Tell us a little about yourself.

  • I’m a native Californian and am from the Central Valley (Fresno, Raisin Capital of the World)
  • I lived in NYC for 7 years and the city is the setting of my debut novel Forever With You
  • I moved to Seattle at the end of January and the daughter of one of my MCs LOVES the Seahawks. They’re her favorite football team and her favorite colors are green and blue. I don’t know if be rooting for them, I have bad blood with Pete Carroll.
  • I’ve worked in the communications field in some way for the last decade
  • I have 11.5 nieces and nephews between five sisters and two brothers. My family is blended, both of my parents remarried. I think that Jaylen, Kelly’s little brother in Forever With You, is an amalgam of a couple of my nieces and nephews.
  • I just got married last year.
  • My favorite job was working as a barista at Starbucks and sometimes I regret not sticking with that job. Something super satisfying about making coffee for people.
  • I love American football. My father played college football, my little brother did as well and he’s now a college football coach. Football will be an important part of my WIP which I hope to publish in May of this year.
  • I love the NY Yankees. I applied for grad school in NYC after visiting there. I said that if the Yankees won the World Series that year, I’d apply for the journalism school I stumbled across. They won, so I did.

What would people be most surprised to know about you?

  • I was a cheerleader in HS
  • I attended a performing arts high school – the very same as Tony Award Winner Audra McDonald. Performing was an outlet for me after a traumatic experience as a child and kind of allowed me to be someone else when living my life was tough. This was my inspiration for Kelly being a dancer in Forever With You. Dancing gave Kelly an outlet as a teenager and later as an adult.
  • I used to get grounded from reading when I was a kid. My mom would send me outside to play and refuse to let me read or just take all the books out of my room. #NerdLife.

How do you relax?

  • Reading
  • Doing guided meditation on headspace
  • Midday naps. Even 20 minutes can change the course of the day for me. I don’t understand why corporate America won’t institute nap time they could get SO much more out of the masses.
  • Taking long walks along waterfronts

Do you have a favorite quote (either from your own books or one’s you’ve read)?

  • This quote from The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood stuck with me for years (and I hate that it is true):

“Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid that men will kill them.”

How long have you been writing and what made you fall in love with writing?

  • I’m a writing newb. Started writing in 2016 and published my first book in 2018. What I love about writing is that you can create the world you want to see around you.

Did you always want to be a writer?

  • Not necessarily a writer but I always wanted to be a communicator. I love engaging other humans.

What are your ambitions for your writing career?

  • Most importantly I want people to see themselves in the stories I write. As a kid, I was always looking for myself in all forms of media. The pickings were slim and that made me feel isolated and invisible. I think seeing yourself reflected in media and art is humanizing. Second, I’d like to do it for a long time so that I can grow and learn and improve. Finally, I want to leave something of myself behind. Selfish, I know. Some people think of having children as their little piece of immortality. I think that’s true but I believe the same can be said about words.

What’s your favorite part of writing?

  • This is going to sound nuts maybe, but editing. I actually love to have my work dissected and taken apart and put back together. I get the same satisfied feelings from a good edit as I do when I dump out my purse or backpack and reorganize it. It just feels really

Share a few words about your latest book/WIP, other than the usual blurb.

  • A lot of the action revolves around a beauty shop. One of the MCs owns his own salon and the other has a daughter and doesn’t know how to do her hair. I spent a lot of time in beauty shops as a kid, first with my mom when she would get her hair washed and styled and then as a pre-teen when I started getting my hair flat-ironed instead of pressed at home. In my culture at least beauty shops and barber shops are community hubs. For a lot of people they’ll share some of their deepest worries, their successes and failures with their beautician or barber. So that dynamic is present in my WIP.

Tell us a little bit about your writing style.

  • Ha – I think it’s still evolving. I will say that I love stories about single dads and creating nontraditional families. I also love to include kids in my stories. I love the way they think, their honestly and their typically straight-forward perspective about things that adults overcomplicate.

What does your writing process look like?

  • This is also evolving but I must say that I’m a big fan of outlining and filling in the blanks if that makes any sense.

When/where is your favorite time/place to write?

  • I think I prefer to write at home, fewer distractions. I’m also much more prolific writer at night though I can bang out 1500 words on my lunch break if I sit down with a specific scene in mind. My first book was written mainly at my kitchen island and in a sitting chair in my bedroom, and sometimes at the coffee shop across the street from my old job on Park Avenue. After I published the first book and finished writing my second one (I’m sitting on that manuscript and probably won’t put it out till next year) I bought myself a writing desk and chair. It was awesome, my own little corner in the house. Unfortunately, I had to break it down and sell off the furniture because I moved cross country but I plan to get the exact same furniture for my home work area here in Seattle.

What genre/s do you enjoy reading in your free time?

  • I’m REALLY into Mpreg romance right now, specifically non-shifter.

What was the last book you read? What did you like about it?

  • Hillbilly Elegy. I thought it was very accessible and I liked the discussion that it stimulated among my peer group. I gifted it to a few people even though I didn’t totally agree with all the books arguments.

Thank you for stopping by and telling us more about yourself.

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Social Media Links

Londra on Twitter

Londra on Amazon

Londra on QueerRomance Ink

Londra on Goodreads

Londra on Facebook

 

 

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Author Spotlight ~ L.J. Harris

A warm welcome to today’s Spotlight Author, L.J. Harris.

Thank you for joining us and sharing more about yourself.

LJ HARRIS

 

Introduce yourself and your writing

Hi! I’m L.J. Harris, and I’m an introvert as well as a mother and an author. I’d rather stay at home than go to parties, and prefer my own company when given the opportunity to be alone (PS that never happens)

How long have you been writing for, and what inspired you to start writing?

I’ve been writing for around 10 years, starting with small poems for family, and I haven’t looked back since.

Tell us about your forthcoming release. What inspired you to write it?

After the release of a few shorter anthology stories (Heart of Glass and Just Like Pulling Teeth) I decided to dive right into my first novel. I liked the idea of a romance between two people from different worlds, and that was when His Personal Assistant was born.

How did you decide on the title?

It was the same title I’d always intended to use – and throughout the entire time I’ve been working on it, I have never deviated from that. At first I thought the story would be a standalone, but then a few other characters decided they wanted their tales told as well, so there will be a second book.

Would you like to share a snippet? 

His Personal Assistant ~ Synopsis

Kade Hutchins is a man at a crossroads. At the tender age of twenty-one he has endured enough hardship to last a thousand lifetimes. With money tight and his career at a standstill, he’s running out of options, so he applies for a job that isn’t exactly in his field of expertise to make ends meet. The day he meets his new boss, Luke Preston is the day his fate is changed irrevocably.

Luke Preston is the kind of man others envy. Rich, successful, handsome, and unattached, his no-nonsense, take no prisoners attitude makes him one of the highest profile litigators in Manhattan. He also is a man with secrets. Secrets he wants to keep under wraps since tragedy shook his privileged existence to the core. That is, until Kade Hutchins, a man fifteen years his junior, steps foot into his office and into his life, turning it on its head forever.

Excerpt

“Thank God you’re here!”

“Um, what?” I muttered.

“Please tell me you’re Kade Hutchins.” Her tone sounded desperate.

“Oh. Yes, I am,” I answered with a tiny bit of reluctance.

She held out her hand and I took it in mine, her firm grip taking me by surprise. “You have no idea how relieved I am to see you.”

“Uh, thanks?” I answered, and she gave me a warm smile that made her round, hazel eyes sparkle. I couldn’t help but grin back, her hospitable attitude making me feel at ease in an instant.

“The name’s Kimberly O’Connell. I’m the paralegal around here.”

“It’s nice to meet you, Ms. O’Connell.”

“Oh, please, I insist you call me Kimberly.”

“Okay.”

Releasing her hold, she pointed a manicured finger at the closed office door located behind the desk. “Come on, Kade. Let’s get you in to see His Highness.” Covering her mouth, Kimberly giggled.

“Who?” I stopped myself from laughing as well, but it wasn’t easy.

“Luke Preston. The ass you spoke to on the phone.”

“Oh.” I didn’t know whether it was appropriate to agree with her or not, but decided it would be best to err on the side of caution.

“Sorry about him, by the way.” Kimberly knocked, before lowering her voice to a faint whisper. “I had no idea he was going to answer the phone when I went to make him his coffee. He usually lets the machine pick up, but I didn’t think to switch it on since I was only going to be gone a few minutes.”

The moment I let out a nervous chuckle, the door to the office flew open.

Dressed in a navy suit with a lime green tie knotted tight around the collar of his crisp white shirt, he looked more like a model than a lawyer. Tall and broad-shouldered, he had a strong jaw and high cheekbones. I’d have placed him to be in his mid-thirties, his dark brown hair slicked back so not a lock was out of place. Startling emerald green eyes fringed by long, dark lashes stared at me with such intensity that, for a split second, I forgot to breathe. Hardened features were softened by flawless, pale skin and full lips that looked so plush, I wondered what they would feel like pressed against my own. In that briefest of moments, I knew I was in trouble, my head waging a war with my heart so fierce, I didn’t know whether to pull him in for a kiss or run for my life.

I decided all I could do was wait for him to say something… anything to break the tension.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?

Having time to write when the characters start chatting away.

 Did you learn anything from writing your book? What was it?

This story in particular has been the hardest to write. I lost a close friend and my father, and my mother fell ill during this time. There have been long stretches of time where I haven’t been able write a single word.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Never stop honing your craft. Listen to others more experienced, and take on board what is important to you in order to improve. Research as much as you can, and ask others for help about subject matter when google doesn’t help. There are challenges to putting your work out there, from finding a publisher to the right editor, to marketing and everything else in between. Writing is by no means a guaranteed money making endeavour either. But as long as you have a story to tell and love what you’re doing, don’t ever stop.

Are there any genres you prefer to write and if so, why?  

My wheelhouse is contemporary romance, but I’ve also written a few paranormal stories in my time (with a romantic theme of course).

Is there a book you wish you had written?

Oh, so many I couldn’t name them all, but as far as world building goes, you can’t beat Harry Potter.

Why M/M?

I’ve always been inspired to explore the struggles that same sex couples face each and every day of their lives.

Do you have any genres you prefer reading, and if so what are they?

As with my writing, I love to read a good contemporary romance, but will also read paranormal when the mood strikes. I love a good YA story too and have never had a problem with ‘fade to black’ stories. I also don’t mind a bit of kink, and have read several BDSM with fantastic storylines as well as high levels of heat. I also adore a good tear-jerker.

What book are you reading at the moment?

I’ve just finishing reading my first shifter story, T.J. Klune’s Wolfsong, and I loved it!

What other writers you follow?

I have a ton of favourite authors, but among them are NR Walker, Jay Northcote, Ella Frank, Riley Hart, Devon McCormack, TC Orton, Ella Frank, KC Wells, Parker Williams, Jaclyn Osborn, Kora Knight, Max Vos, Cody Kennedy, Renae Kaye. The list is endless come to think about it! 😊

Are any of your characters based on you or people you know?

A tiny trait or memory here and there may come from people I know, but for the most part they’re as fictional as they come.

What’s your favourite book you’ve written?

The Haunting of Angus Macgregor will always own a special place in my heart, as it is the first story I self-published.

Do characters and stories just pop into your head, or do you take your time thinking about and planning them?

Plots tend to strike from nowhere, especially when I’m out and about or having meaningful conversations. The shower is another place where ideas seem to appear out of nowhere, and I have often had eureka moments whilst shaving my legs (no lie!) 😊

Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Definitely a pantser. Once a basic plot hits, I discover the characters’ traits (and therefore actions and where the story will end up) as I go along, which is as scary as it is exhilarating.

Do you have a writing schedule?

With work and family demands, I don’t have a set schedule. It’s why I don’t release a ton of books each year, as I write when I find a few peaceful moments (and due to my perfectionist streak tend to tweak as I write which slows me down) and hope that during those rare moments the characters start talking.

And a few non-writing questions…

Tell us about your pets.

I’m between pets right now, but have owned only one feral cat, which I was highly allergic to. I’ve owned guinea pigs, birds of varying kinds, fish and dogs.

If you could choose any superpower or magical ability, what would it be and why?

What would you do with it? The ability to fly (even though I’m afraid of heights) because there is a sense of freedom there, soaring above the clouds without a care in the world. Or predict the future so I could get the lotto numbers and write full time. LOL.

If you could go anywhere in the world, all expenses paid, where would you go, who would you take with you, if anyone, and why?

My bucket list is long and varied but New York City, where my current novel is based, is on the top of that list.

Thank you for stopping by and telling us more about yourself.

 

UPDATED POST FEATURE

HIS PERSONAL ASSISTANT

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Editor – R. E. Hargrave

Cover Designer – The Graphics Shed

Genre – Contemporary Gay Romance

Series – Book 1 – Men of New York

Length – 76k

Release Date – January 26, 2018

 

BLURB

At the tender age of twenty-one, Kade Hutchins is at a crossroads, having endured enough hardship to last a thousand lifetimes. With money tight and career at a standstill, he’s running out of time and options. The day he applies for a job that isn’t exactly in his field of expertise and meets his new boss, Mr. Preston, is the day his fate is changed irrecoverably.

Luke Preston is the kind of man others envy. Rich, successful and unattached, his no-nonsense, ‘take no prisoners attitude’ has made him one of the highest profile litigators in Manhattan. He’s also a man with secrets. Secrets he wants kept under wraps since tragedy rocked his privileged existence to the core. When Kade, a man some fifteen years his junior steps foot inside his office, Luke wonders if his heart will survive.

EXCERPT

I brushed an errant piece of fluff off my shoulder, straightened the hem of my shirt, and took a deep breath. Not that it did much good. By the time the elevator doors opened on the tenth floor, my nervousness was at an all-time high.

With less than a minute to spare, I stepped inside the plush, modern offices and was met by the sight of a striking woman sitting behind a large reception desk. Though she appeared business-like, what didn’t make sense was the way she seemed ready to pounce the second she saw me. I was surprised she didn’t fall flat on her face, considering she wore a pencil-thin black skirt and high-heeled shoes and was on her feet and running toward me like a crazy person.

“Thank God you’re here!”

“Um, what?” I took a wary step backward. She was kinda scary.

“Please tell me you’re Kade Hutchins.”

“Oh. Yes, I am.”

She held out her hand and when I took it in mine, I was impressed by her firm, assured grip. “You have no idea how relieved I am to see you.”

“Uh, thanks?” The warm smile she gave in response caused her round, hazel eyes to sparkle, while her hospitable attitude made me feel at ease in an instant. As she released her grasp, I couldn’t help but grin back

“The name’s Kimberly O’Connell. I’m the paralegal around here.”

“It’s nice to meet you, Ms. O’Connell.”

“Oh, please, call me Kimberly.”

“Okay.”

She pointed a manicured finger at the closed office door located behind the desk. “Come on, Kade. Let’s get you in to see His Highness.” Covering her mouth, she giggled. I stopped myself from joining in, but it wasn’t easy. She had an infectious laugh.

“Who?”

“Luke Preston. The ass you spoke to on the phone.”

“Oh.” I didn’t know whether it was appropriate to agree with her or not, but decided it would be best to err on the side of caution.

“Sorry about him, by the way.” Kimberly knocked, before lowering her voice to a faint whisper, and adding, “I had no idea he was going to answer the phone when I went to make his coffee. He usually lets the machine pick up, but I didn’t think to switch it on since I was only going to be gone a few minutes.”

The moment I let out a quiet chuckle, the door to Luke Preston’s office flew open.

Tall and broad-shouldered, he had a strong jaw, high cheekbones, and dark brown hair slicked back so not a lock was out of place. That, coupled with the way his body filled out the navy suit he wore, made Luke Preston look more like a model than a lawyer. My guess was that he was in his mid-thirties, but holy shit, did he wear it well. Startling emerald eyes fringed by long, dark lashes stared at me with such intensity that, for a split second, I forgot to breathe. His sharp features were softened by flawless, pale skin and full lips, and I wondered what they would feel like pressed against my own. In that briefest of moments, I knew I was in trouble as my head began waging a war with my heart so fierce, I didn’t know whether to pull him in for a kiss or run for my life.

All I could do was wait for him to say something… anything to break the tension.

BUY LINKS

Amazon US

Amazon AU

Amazon UK

Universal Link

 

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J. HARRIS is a mother, wife, an introvert and author. Her family is her life, her soul, and the very reason she gets out of bed every day. Coming a close second is her writing.

She discovered a passion for putting pen to paper in her later years, jotting down poems in birthday cards for family members.

It was then a spark was lit, and ever since, she’s been unable to switch off the urge to share her stories.

L.J. Harris discovered that as much as experiencing pain, loss and betrayal can be devastating, capturing the feelings of anguish and loss that some of her characters have had to endure without firsthand knowledge would have proved difficult.

L.J. has been previously published and has shared several online stories and looks forward to continuing to share her work.  She can be found at:

CONTACT LINKS

Blog   Facebook   Goodreads  Twitter

All books can be found on her Amazon profile HERE

 

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Author Spotlight – Matthew J. Metzger

A warm welcome to today’s Spotlight Author, Matthew J. Metzger

Thank you for joining us and sharing more about yourself.

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT MATTHEW J

Tell us a little about yourself.

Okay, well, I’m Matthew. I’m a British guy living in Yorkshire at the minute, I have a monstrous black cat and a thing for cheese on toast, and I’m 27 years old. I’ve been publishing queer romance for five years now (holy hell, didn’t realise that until I wrote it down) and I’m cack-handed. There you go, mix of relevant and weird, seems appropriate.

What would people be most surprised to know about you?

I know what it is, but I can’t say what it is for privacy reasons. I supposed the next step down would be…I was a super quiet, good little kid. I’ve got this reputation as a gobshite (both online and in real life) and not taking anyone’s crap, but I was the invisible kid in the corner growing up. You’d never have known I was there, I never got in trouble, nothing. Kind of weird to think about now.

How do you relax?

I write…sad, I know! No, seriously, I do find writing a book very relaxing. But I also like to travel, to exercise, swim or hike somewhere, go explore a little bit—but the tablet always come with me, ready for the next session.

Do you have a favorite quote (either from your own books or one’s you’ve read)?

I have two literature quotes that I adore, both of which form tattoos of mine. The first is from The Hobbit, wherein Gandalf says, “The world is not in your books and maps. It’s out there.” And the second is along a similar theme from The Long Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, in the lnes, “Do I dare / disturb the universe?” To me, both are what we all need to do more of. We need to step outside of our comfortable places and explore and experience, instead of sitting around and losing our precious time to things that don’t really matter.

How long have you been writing and what made you fall in love with writing?

Since I could hold a pen. I’ve always made up stories, I always played make-believe as a little kid, so writing was just an extension of that for me. As I got older and I started to want particular types of stories, stories about people like me from backgrounds like mine, it became a way to plug those gaps and that’s what I really fell in love with it, I think. I didn’t have to wait for someone else to maybe, by chance, write about someone like me—I could do it.

Did you always want to be a writer?

I’m not sure I always wanted to be, but I was always going to be. I was writing (crap) stories by the time I was four years old, so it’s always been a little bit of a given I’d try. Admittedly, I didn’t expect to be 21 when I got my first contract, but there you are.

What are your ambitions for your writing career?

Keep going, I guess? I’m not an ambitious author, really. I like to write, I’m good at it, so I do, that’s pretty much it. I’d like to step out of my go-to zones a little more, write a bit more widely across the rainbow, try my hand at sci-fi again, that sort of thing.

What’s your favorite part of writing?

Dialogue. I love it when my characters start ‘chelping.’ I just finish a pair of books where my main characters do nothing but wind each other up and flirt outrageously, and it’s so much fun to write. Save your slushy proposals and your page-long monologues, give me a wind-up merchant any day of the week!

Why did you choose to write GLBTQ romance? 

Well, I’m asexual and transgender, so queer stories are kind of my area anyway. Romance came as a bit of a natural byproduct, because my fascination in writing is people. I love picking people apart and bouncing them off each other. My favourite TV shows are people-centric too, irrespective of the genre. I’m slowly moving back out into other genres, but at the end of the day, I am an author of people-centric stories, so romance is always going to come highly on that list.

Do you write any other genre?

As of…right now, I also write queer fantasy, it turns out! My next release is a fairytale retelling, I am 75% of the way through a steampunk novel, and I have outlines for a fantasy trilogy set in Islamic Spain, and a Rapunzel retelling. So I guess I don’t fit tidily into my genre boxes anymore.

Describe a scene in your writing that has made you laugh or cry?

There’s a scene in Walking on Water where Janez has been very badly wounded. When his brother, King Alarik, sees him, Alarik believes Janez to be dead. And this is a character who is very—he loves his family, but he is a king first and foremost and he puts his kingdom above them. He’s pragmatic and he’s logical and his kingdom come first, for the greater good. But when he sees what he believes to be his younger brother’s dead body, he breaks. And it was absolutely heartbreaking. He just shattered down the middle, completely collapsed in on himself with grief, and he didn’t care who was watching, what would be said, that there was still a war to fight. He just broke, and I did have a little bit of a sniffle when I was writing that part.

Give the readers a summary of your latest book.

Walking on Water is a queer retelling of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Little Mermaid. Calla is a mermaid who goes above her sky—the surface of the sea—to meet the legendary skymen, and falls in love with one of them. In being transformed, she becomes a man rather than a woman, and discovers that all her ill-fitting feeling is washed away by this new form. Thus Calla becomes Held—who is simply a foreign sailor who saved the prince’s life, in the skymen’s eyes. And Held is determined to hold onto his new life and love, even if it means abandoning everything he’s ever known.

What genre does it fall in?

It’s a historical fantasy romance, so a significant step outside of my contemporary box.

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Share a few words about your latest book other than the usual blurb.

I’d say if you like languages, you’re going to like this. It’s based in north-east Europe and the human love interest is a German. So that’s what our hero hears whenever the humans are talking. I played around a lot with the way German and English can relate to one another in this book, and you can pick up some pretty niche German sentences if you want!

Give us a little insight into your main characters. Who are they?

The couple at the core of the story are Janez and Held, formerly Calla. Janez is a prince of a coastal Germanic kingdom, formerly heir to the throne but gratefully pushed aside by his baby nephew. Unfortunately his kingdom is at war and an alliance is needed to protect their borders, so it’s Janez who is being sacrificed to get married to a foreign princess he’s never met. Janez is very dutiful but also quite impetuous and romantic, so he really struggles to cope with both his duty to his people and his love for Held, who can’t protect their kingdom from anything the way an alliance can.

Calla is a curious mermaid who gets turned into human man to pursue Janez. After she’s transformed, she realises that her new male form is the answer to why she’s always felt so strange and ill-fitting, and so Calla becomes Held, a simple foreign sailor in the eyes of all the other humans. While Held is quite quiet and curious, he can get pretty savage about defending both himself and Janez if push comes to shove. (He’s also deeply offended by Janez wanting to brush his own hair, as that’s Held’s job, apparently.)

Will we be seeing these characters again any time soon? Is this book part of a series?

No, this one is a stand alone. And given it’s my first fantasy, I won’t even be doing my Easter egg trick that I have for my contemporary novels, where a main character from another mention sails through in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo. These guys exist on their own, and probably always will.

Which actor would you like to see playing the lead character from your most recent book?

I don’t really think in this way so I have no idea, I’m afraid!

Tell us about your writing style.

A bit weird? I write more as I speak, to be honest. And I play with language a lot. (You can snarl a word. You people aren’t using your mouths properly.) A line I remember from years and years ago in a favourite book described a very loud man entering a cavernous space, and the main character thinking it was about to ramp up the volume significantly. And the next line was: ‘Sure enough. “Welcome!” the captain rock-concerted.’ You can see what’s happening. You can feel it. That’s what I try to do, I don’t give a damn if Bob has the antecedent or it’s not fashionable to use adverbs right now. Can you understand it, and does it convey what you want it to convey? If both yes, job done.

What does your writing process look like?

I get an idea. I jot down a few notes about the idea. I shriek about the idea to my betas, my SRs, and my writer friends. I write the title and ‘Chapter One.’ Then I write more. In big chunks. Usually in order but not always. And I keep going until I lose interest or I’m finished. Ta-da!

When/where is your favourite time/place to write?

I write at weekends and usually all in one go, so I’ll spend all Saturday in a cafe in the city centre just smashing out words. There’s a couple of cafes I go to in the middle of Leeds, because I work really well with a lot of hustle and bustle around. Except for maybe that one time when the couple at the next table got divorced…

What genre/s do you enjoy reading?

I’m mainly a non-fiction reader, though historical fantasy will sometimes get my attention. For someone who writes a lot of romance, I barely ever read it!

What was the last book you read? What did you like about it?

I’m currently busy with the Aubrey/Maturin series by Patrick O’Brian. It’s the story of a Royal Navy officer, Jack Aubrey, and his best friend, Stephen Maturin, who is not only the ship’s surgeon but a spy for the British government. It’s set in the Napoleonic era and while it’s a bit of a slog as O’Brian is so interested in the technical details of sailing and naval warfare, it’s fascinating. I’ve just reached The Fortune of War, so a long ways to go yet.

Have you held any interesting jobs while working on your books?

I’ve been working an interesting job from the very beginning!

What hobbies do you have outside of writing?

I’m very outdoorsy, I’m always off hiking or mountain biking. If the weather’s crap, which is always, I’ll be down the gym to get my exercise fix.

Thank you for telling us more about yourself and good luck with the new release.

 

Author Bio

Matthew J. Metzger is an asexual, transgender author dragged up in the wet and windy British Isles. He writes queer characters living all manner of lives, but especially likes to write the stories from the pub, the beautiful game, and the terraces where he lives and works today. Although mainly a contemporary romance writer, Matthew has recently been found straying out of his zone and playing in other genres’ sandboxes.

When not writing, Matthew is usually at his day job, working out, or asleep. He is owned by an enormous black cat, so should generally be approached with either extreme caution, or treats.

He can be primarily found on Twitter and Facebook or over at his website, and is always happy to hear from readers.

Author Spotlight ~ A. Zukowski

 

A warm welcome to today’s Spotlight Author, A. Zukowski.

Thank you for joining us and sharing more about yourself.

A. Zukowski

Tell us a little about yourself.

I’ve lived in too many places to name, but I consider Manchester, UK, my home town. I grew up roaming the gay village, which was a red light district. They tried to clean it up, so it’s not that bad now. Later, I worked in London and studied screenwriting. After many more moves, I’ve come back to London where I’m based now.

What would people be most surprised to know about you?

Ah. If you meet me in person, you’ll think I’m totally, absolutely ordinary and boring. ^_^

How do you relax?

You know, that thing people do…

Do you have a favorite quote (either from your own books or one’s you’ve read)?

I’m with you in Rockland where we are great writers on the same dreadful typewriter ~ Allen Ginsberg, Howl

How long have you been writing and what made you fall in love with writing?

As a screenwriter, I found myself creating things that simply wouldn’t sell! Everyone kept telling me to write something else, write what I knew. When I did that, it never lived up to what they thought my life was about. Well, the only person who never judged me that way was my mentor, who’s a wonderful producer, and who used to work for the BBC. So, about three, four years ago, I started writing fiction, fully expecting none of it to see the light of day. I dabbled with blogging. But when I finished Jay and Sasha’s story, I really wanted to share it.

Did you always want to be a writer?

No. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my writing. I still don’t.

What are your ambitions for your writing career?

Do I have a writing career now? The reaction I’ve been receiving for my debut novel has been a surprise to me, and it’s encouraging. I’d like to carry on writing, and to find readers who get it. I have no particular ambition as a writer.

What’s your favorite part of writing?

The emotional journey. It’s a bit clichéd, isn’t it? But seriously, my stories are always about characters. The MCs end up living in my head for months on end. They love, they hate, they self-doubt and they make big fucking mistakes. I like that.

Why did you choose to write GLBTQ romance? Why not another genre?

Ha! I think one of the recent reviews states that my book’s not a romance. I tell stories, and I try not to fit them into genres. I’ve been told by publishers that they can’t consider my books because people die(!) or they don’t have sex scenes etc. I do give my characters love and a happy ending, though, because they’ve earned it.

Do you write any other genre?

I think that’s why LGBTQ romance is useful because you can combine it with other genres. After the London Stories series, I’ve also got several WIPs, which are part of a queer romance sci-fi series.

Describe a scene in your writing that has made you laugh or cry.

Hmmm. The child abuse in The Boy was hard to write, and I cried more than once. I didn’t want to detail it first, but my editor suggested that I really should, since it’s an important part of Sasha’s character. Of course, she was right. In fact, writing so many horrific scenes in his story was not easy. I was so depressed all the time, I can’t tell you. In case you are wondering, though, I enjoy the lighter scenes as well, and there is HEA. The MCs are both tremendous characters who can laugh about things, even when they struggle through life.

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Give the readers a brief summary of your latest book.

Jay Palmer is two months away from his sixteenth birthday. He doesn’t realise how his life will be changed forever when a gang of thugs leaves a badly injured boy on his doorstep. He and his single mum Maggie nurse the stranger, who turns out to be sixteen-year-old Aleksander Zukowski, also known as Sasha. Sasha ran away from care two and half years ago. He sleeps rough, is addicted to drugs and sells himself on the streets of London to fund his habit. For the first time in his life, he has a reason to change.

Sasha confirms what Jay already knows about himself but it’s not easy for Jay to come out to his macho mates in a largely black neighbourhood. Sasha has an uphill struggle to stay clean when his past simply throws him back into the abyss.

It’s a YA gay romance about two teenagers finding love, courage and redemption on the mean streets of London.

What genre does it fall in?

A YA/NA gay romance

Share a few words about your latest book, other than the usual blurb.

At one point, I’d drifted through the Dutch cities—Utrecht, Rotterdam, Amsterdam—sleeping in shelters and hostels. Before some of these places opened for the night, we’d waited in the train stations and sometimes on the streets. It was foolhardy, but my eighteen-year-old self was fearless, and I live to tell the tale.

The Boy Who Fell to Earth comes from memories like this, and of my experiences of growing up. It’s also a dedication to some people I’ve lost. They’ve inspired me with their deep flaws, and their hope for love and acceptance.

Give us a little insight into your main characters. Who are they?

Jay’s a mixed race boy from East London. His mum’s a formidable mother figure, and they are poor, but strong people. He’s able to see through all the darkness to imagine the light. An absolutely stunning character to write. Sasha refers to Jay at one point, “I saw the little droplets of water on the fabric. They were as beautiful and pure as him.” That’s Jay.

Sasha’s basically a broken person, on the way to total self-destruction at various points of the novel. The question for me as a writer is what kind of journey he goes through, and how to get him there. How he learns that he can love another (Jay) and love himself. His story is absolutely heart-breaking. His personality is much closer to mine, so I seriously should have some counselling after finishing the novel.

Will we be seeing these characters again any time soon? Is this book part of a series?

It was not my intention to start a series, but I’ve already drafted the next book of the “London Stories series”. That’s Liam’s story. He’s Sasha’s drug addict friend who shares the squat with him. An Irish lad who ran away from home and ended up a panhandler in London. He’s going to find his own redemption in Liam for Hire. The third story in the series is a WIP at the moment, which is about Liam’s friend Chris who’s a trans/queer, bisexual man. The story will feature Chris and Alex, who’s an ex-boxer. Alex will come to terms with his sexuality, too.  

Which actor would you like to see playing the lead character from your most recent book?

I have absolutely no clue! River Phoenix circa. Running on Empty as Sasha? Ah, in the recent French film Quand on a 17 ans, the main character is mixed race and he really has a great presence. Let me find the name: Corentin Fila. He’d be a perfect Jay.

Tell us a little bit about your writing style.

I don’t know if I have one! I want to touch my readers, make them feel the characters’ emotions. It was suggested to me by my mentor (see above) that I’d always have a goal when I wrote. How do I want the readers to feel at the end of the story?

What does your writing process look like?

Messy. I usually start with the characters and a setting, and let the story flow. Not being schooled in literature, I don’t consider plot till much later. I do however think as a script writer, and am aware of the dramatic arc. Then, I spend months over the editing.  

When/where is your favorite time/place to write?

Night time. Too late – something like ten to two.

What genre/s do you enjoy reading in your free time?

As a reader, I don’t think about genres either, but these days I almost never read or watch anything that is heteronormative.

What was the last book you read? What did you like about it?

I am reading My Name is N by Robert Karjel, a Swedish writer. It’s a thriller and very layered, with intertwining stories happening in Indonesia, New York and an American detention centre in the Pacific. I’m enjoying it. The writing style is crisp, and the characters detailed and interesting. There was a news story when the translation came out in the USA, because some readers complained that they’d inadvertently picked it up, and hadn’t liked the fact that they were not warned about the central character’s bisexuality. Comments like that totally annoy me. The book’s working for me so far as a thriller.

Have you held any interesting jobs while you worked on your books?

Is it interesting that quite a while ago I worked with criminals (not in the sense that I robbed banks with them!)? They are great inspirations. Seriously, they, together with my own demons and all the crazies I’ve known, I have no shortage of characters I can write about for a very long time.

What hobbies do you have outside of writing?

I swim. I’m a geek who likes board games. Told you, absolutely bloody boring.

Thank you for stopping by and telling us more about yourself.

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The Boy Who Fell to Earth

Blurb:

A gang leaves a badly injured teenager on Jay’s doorstep. Sasha is homeless, addicted to drugs and sells himself on the streets to fund his habit. Jay’s attraction to Sasha confirms his sexuality. Now he has to come out to his macho mates. Sasha needs to stay clean when his past threatens to throw him back into the abyss. Are the two boys strong enough to stay together against all odds? A YA story about hope, courage, and compassion on the mean streets of London.

“It has a force that keeps you on the edge of the seat and a grittiness that opens your eyes and makes you think.” ~ Sinfully Gay Romance Book Reviews

“I know this is one of those stories that will play on my mind long after I’ve stopped reading.” ~ Alpha Book Club

 

Buy links

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Smashwords

Excerpt:

The first time Jay kisses a boy

We ended up sharing a joint again that afternoon. I carried on my one-sided conversation while he patiently listened to me, his newly cleaned hair shining in the sun. He had his back to the door frame, his eyes closed to catch the rays like he was on holidays enjoying himself, trying to get a tan. For the first time since we picked him off the front lawn, he was relaxed. I was absolutely mesmerised by the shape of his face, the lines of his nose, the vulnerability of that bruised body. I leaned forward and touched his lips with mine.

 His eyes snapped open, but he didn’t seem shocked or upset.

 Still. I moved away, awkwardly. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to,” I muttered.

 He gazed at me, his eyes quietly assessing me. His facial expression was calm and receptive. “It’s okay.”

 My eyes went wide. “Okay? Hmm.” I busied myself with a little loose thread on my top. I hadn’t even kissed a boy before and now I had done this to a stranger, someone who didn’t yet have a name. What the fuck was I doing?

 He lit the joint and drew on it deeply. He breathed out, cocked his head, and looked at my face, as if he was trying to work me out. “Does your mum know you’re gay?”

 I stared at him. I hadn’t considered coming out seriously. Hell, I hadn’t even come out to myself, so why would I have spoken to Ma about it? “Uh, no,” I answered.

 He took another toke and passed the joint back to me. He didn’t comment further.

All my doubts evaporated. He’d acted like it was nothing special and, like he said, it was okay. Kissing a boy you found attractive was fine. I couldn’t believe I’d come out for the first time to a total stranger after kissing him.

About the Author

Zukowski is a London-based British writer who grew up in the gay village and red light district of Manchester. AZ was trained in screenwriting at the University of the Arts London; National Film & Television School and Script Factory, UK, followed by various misadventures as a film journalist, and writer and producer of short films.

Social Media Links:

Goodreads

WordPress Blog

Facebook

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Blog Tour – One Word by Anne Barwell

Thanks for hosting me today as part of my blog tour for One Word, the 3rd book in my Hidden Places series from Dreamspinner Press.

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I have a Rafflecopter running as part of the tour so be sure to enter.

Dreamspinner Press also have the ebooks for Cat’s Quill (book 1) and Magic’s Muse (book 2) on sale for 75% off on 6th November as part of their daily deals newsletter.

AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Tell us a little about yourself.
I live in New Zealand, work in a public library, and play violin for a local community orchestra. I’m a huge geek, especially when it comes to SF, fantasy, and comics, and anything related to them. My first book was published by Dreamspinner Press in 2011. One Word is my 12th title with them. I write across a number of genres including contemporary, historical, SF, and fantasy, often with a bit of mystery/detective sprinkled into the plot.

What would people be most surprised to know about you?
I don’t drink coffee. Love the smell, hate the taste, and it makes me sleepy.

How do you relax?
I play in an orchestra, read, and watch TV and movies. I belong to a science fiction club, and meet up with friends regularly for meals and/or a movie. I always have a knitting project on the go and that often accompanies the TV watching and get-togethers. One day I’m hoping to have time to get back into cross-stitch and finish the projects I’ve started.

Do you have a favorite quote (either from your own books or one’s you’ve read)?
But words are things: and a small drop of ink
Falling like dew, upon a thought, produces
That which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think.
—George Gordon Byron

I used this as the quote at the beginning of Magic’s Muse, and liked it so much I named my website Drops of Ink.

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How long have you been writing and what made you fall in love with writing?
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. When creative writing was set at school, it always turned into elaborate world building with fleshed out characters. I didn’t do any for years while my children were small but then I found the internet, and fanfiction, and started writing again.

Did you always want to be a writer?
Yes, and thought being a published writer was a pipe dream. I still can’t believe I have book #13 coming out in January.

What are your ambitions for your writing career?
To keep writing, and for publishers to still want to publish what I write. I’d love more hours in the day so I could write more, but it’s difficult with working full time, and having family commitments.

What’s your favorite part of writing?
Seeing my characters grow on the page. I usually start a book with a fair idea of the direction of the plot, and the characters, but they always like to take the scenic route, and I learn things about them I didn’t know.

Why did you choose to write GLBTQ romance? Why not another genre?
They are the characters who came to me and wanted their story written. My writing tends to be character driven, rather than romance driven, and in some stories although the romance is there, it’s not what the book is about.

Give the readers a brief summary of your latest book.
Ethan Leavitt arrives in the idyllic village of Oakwood to search for a missing friend. Having always prided himself on his ability to find rational explanations, Ethan’s trust in concrete evidence and logic is tested by the mystery of Oakwood and Tomas’s disappearance.

Donovan Campbell’s happy, sometimes flippant, exterior hides a past he’d rather forget. As he struggles with his memories and to hold on to the inn he owns with his best friend, the last thing Donovan needs is for some guy he’s only just met to start getting under his skin. When a bank robbery escalates into a dangerous situation, Donovan must embrace a part of himself he can no longer ignore in order to save a future that might never have the chance to exist.

Ethan learns that often the person you’re looking for is not the one you find. But have he and Donovan both realized that too late…?

What genre does it fall in?
Mystery detective, although it’s also been described as romantic suspense. There’s also a touch of fantasy, but blink and you’ll miss it.

Share a few words about your latest book, other than the usual blurb.
Although One Word is book three of my fantasy series Hidden Places, it’s not a fantasy. It’s also a side story to book one in the series, Cat’s Quill. Although it takes place at the same time as the last few chapters of that one, it can be read as a standalone. I wanted to tell Donovan and Ethan’s story before I write the final book in the series, Dragon’s Price, as they play a big part in it.

Give us a little insight into your main characters. Who are they?
Donovan Campbell is very laid back, and his default mode is good humoured. However, that is also a façade for the pain he hides from a past he still hasn’t come to terms with. He owns an inn in the small English village of Oakwood with his friend, Heidi. Donovan is American, and came to England for a fresh start.

Ethan Leavitt is British, and a high school Maths and Science teacher. He believes that everything has a logical explanation. He has a very dry sense of humour, and isn’t great at making friends. He’s still recovering from his bad breakup with his previous partner.

Will we be seeing these characters again any time soon? Is this book part of a series?
Yes! One Word is a Hidden Places story. Readers met Donovan in book one of that series—Cat’s Quill—when Tomas came to stay at the inn he owned. Ethan is Tomas’s friend, and although he was mentioned in that book, he didn’t appear ‘on screen’ until book two—Magic’s Muse. Although the rest of the series is a portal fantasy, their story isn’t. I’m looking forward to writing the last book with Ethan trying to get his head around being in a world in which magic is prevalent, given how much he’s determined to find a rational, scientific explanation for everything.

Which actor would you like to see playing the lead character from your most recent book?
Craig Olejnik for Donovan, and Christopher Gorham for Ethan.

Tell us a little bit about your writing style. What does your writing process look like?
I love notebooks. I have one for each series—as I love to write in series—which I fill with notes and ideas. By the time I get as far as writing most of the book is already outlined in those notebooks, although scenes I never thought of always manage to sneak into each book.

Once I have a very loose bullet pointed outline, I start writing. I usually do at least three drafts, and am constantly tweaking as I re-read through. I love my beta readers.

I’d describe my writing as character driven, usually with a romance and often with a good dollop of action and drama.

When/where is your favorite time/place to write?
I work afternoons/evenings and weekends so I write in the mornings before work and on my weekends which are Monday/Tuesday. I have my dining room table set up as my workspace, which works well as I can multitask and cook/bake at the same time. Nevertheless I have got so involved in a scene I’m writing that more than one batch of muffins have come out a little blacker than they were supposed to. I also have a nice relaxing view of my backyard from the window, and can see the Orongorongo ranges in the distance.

What genre/s do you enjoy reading in your free time?
SF & fantasy, historical, anything that looks interesting.

What was the last book you read? What did you like about it?
The Jackal’s House by Anna Butler. I loved the leads, Ned and Rafe, and the way they complement each other. Her world building is fabulous, and I’m always partial to a good steampunk story with an intriguing layered plot.

I usually have two books on the go. One on my tablet which was the latter, and a hardcopy to read during breaks at work. That one was The Furthest Station by Ben Aaronovitch. It’s a novella and part of his Rivers of London series which is about a London copper who is part of The Folly, the wizarding branch of the London Met. I love this series, its characters, and its humour.

Have you held any interesting jobs while you worked on your books?
I work in a public library and have done since my first book—Cat’s Quill—was published. I wrote that first book while I was studying for my Bteach/BA in English Lit/Music.

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Blurb:
A Hidden Places Story
Ethan Leavitt arrives in the idyllic village of Oakwood to search for a missing friend. Having always prided himself on his ability to find rational explanations, Ethan’s trust in concrete evidence and logic is tested by the mystery of Oakwood and Tomas’s disappearance.

Donovan Campbell’s happy, sometimes flippant, exterior hides a past he’d rather forget. As he struggles with his memories and to hold on to the inn he owns with his best friend, the last thing Donovan needs is for some guy he’s only just met to start getting under his skin. When a bank robbery escalates into a dangerous situation, Donovan must embrace a part of himself he can no longer ignore in order to save a future that might never have the chance to exist.

Ethan learns that often the person you’re looking for is not the one you find. But have he and Donovan both realized that too late…?

Excerpt:
“I’m so sorry, Jane,” Ethan said, “and I apologize for my insensitivity earlier. It was completely out of line.”

She managed a shaky smile. “Thank you for being understanding. Good afternoon, gentlemen. I guess it’s a good thing that I have the day off, isn’t it?”

“I’m sorry for kicking you,” Donovan said after she’d left.

“I can be an insensitive jerk at times. Lord knows, I’ve been told that often enough.”

“Not always. You’ve got a kind side to you too.”

Ethan’s concern for Jane had been real enough, as was his mortification that he’d been rude once he’d seen that she was upset.

“You say that like it’s a good thing.” Ethan retrieved his napkin from the side of his plate and wiped his mouth. “Sometimes it’s not, you know. People take advantage. Not that I’m saying she is, but….” He sighed. “Just forget it, okay.”

“Okay.” Donovan wondered who had hurt Ethan and recently. He’d seen enough to connect the dots. “Lots of assholes in this world, unfortunately.”

“And some decent people too. Oakwood’s been good for reminding me of that.”

“Are you sure you’re okay to come to London with me tomorrow?” Donovan couldn’t help but think that something in their conversation had triggered Ethan’s reaction. He’d said Mitchell and Vincent were good friends. Perhaps it was this acquaintance he’d mentioned? The one who had introduced him to them.

“I’m looking forward to it.” Ethan glanced at Donovan’s empty plate. “Have you had enough lunch?”

“Yes, thanks. I was hungrier than I realized.” Donovan finished the last of his beer.

“I went to see the owner of the Chronicle the other day, but he was too busy to talk and suggested we meet briefly today instead. I’m hoping, as he’s been working at the newspaper a while, he can tell me some old stories about Oakwood that didn’t end up in print. You’re welcome to come if you’d like.”

“Thanks for the offer, but I need to do some work at the inn this afternoon. We had to replace some weatherboards a few months ago, and I need to get them painted before winter.” Donovan wished he could have said yes, but Heidi was stressing about it. If he didn’t get onto it soon, she’d be out there doing it herself, and she did enough already. Part of their agreement in taking on the inn was that they split the workload between them, and Donovan made sure he pulled his weight. “You’re okay to find your own way back?”

“Yes, I’ll be fine. Thanks for asking.” Ethan pushed back his chair and walked over to the counter to pay for their meal. “I’ll see you later, at the inn.”

“Okay. Sounds good.” Donovan didn’t follow him immediately but instead stayed at the table watching Ethan at the counter. His hair curled up slightly at the back, his jacket falling to mid-ass, not quite covering it. He had a very nice ass.

Bet he kisses well too.

Oh fuck. Donovan closed his eyes for a moment. Where the hell had that thought come from? He was falling for the guy, wasn’t he—falling for a guy who wasn’t interested and would be walking out of his life in a couple of days.

Donovan heard footsteps walking away. He opened his eyes just in time to see Ethan disappear out the door. It was time to leave and bury himself in the work he needed to get done. He stood and headed for the door, giving Eoin and his friends a wave as he passed their table.

He hadn’t missed the money the three men had given Craig or the grins they all wore.

Donovan groaned. Great, that was all he needed. The pub door slammed as he stalked through it. Yep, they were running another betting pool all right.

It wasn’t his fault they were wasting their time. They’d find that out soon enough for themselves.

Buy Link

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Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway to win a $10 Dreamspinner Press Voucher

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Tour Stops

November 3 – Open Skye Book Reviews
November 6 – Book Reviews and More by Kathy
November 6 – Top to Bottom Reviews
November 6 – Two Men Are Better Than One
November 6 – Gay Book Promotions
November 7 – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
November 8 – Happily Ever After Chapter
November 9 – Love Bytes Reviews
November 10 – Boy Meets Boy Reviews
November 10 – Nic Starr
November 13 – The Novel Approach Reviews
November 14 – Dreamspinner Press Blog
November 15 – Aisling Mancy

About the Author

Anne Barwell lives in Wellington, New Zealand. She shares her home with two cats who are convinced that the house is run to suit them; this is an ongoing “discussion,” and to date it appears as though the cats may be winning.

In 2008 she completed her conjoint BA in English Literature and Music/Bachelor of Teaching. She has worked as a music teacher, a primary school teacher, and now works in a library. She is a member of the Upper Hutt Science Fiction Club and plays violin for Hutt Valley Orchestra.

She is an avid reader across a wide range of genres and a watcher of far too many TV series and movies, although it can be argued that there is no such thing as “too many.” These, of course, are best enjoyed with a decent cup of tea and further the continuing argument that the concept of “spare time” is really just a myth. She also hosts other authors, reviews for the GLBTQ Historical Site “Our Story” and Top2Bottom Reviews, and writes monthly blog posts for Authors Speak and Love Bytes.

Anne’s books have received honorable mentions four times and reached the finals three times in the Rainbow Awards. She has also been nominated twice in the Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards—once for Best Fantasy and once for Best Historical.

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Website & Blog
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Dreamspinner Press Author Page
DSP Publications Author Page
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New Zealand Rainbow Romance Writers

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Author Spotlight – Dale Cameron Lowry

A warm welcome to today’s Spotlight Author,

Dale Cameron Lowry, editor of Myths, Moons, and Mayhem.

Thank you for joining us and sharing more about yourself.

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT DLC

Tell us a little about yourself.

I grew up in western Europe and the eastern United States. I learned Spanish along with English and, for the longest time, thought the first line of “The Star-Spangled Banner” was “José, can you see?” and that this José was an angel—the same one referred to in all those Christmas hymns as “José Josana!”

I learned the actual words to “The Star Spangled Banner” and “God Bless America” by listening to Yankee Doodle Mickey over and over again during the summer before my first year of school in the United States. By the time fall rolled around, I knew most of the songs better than my classmates. Guess I didn’t have to cram so hard!

Today I’m a writer and migraneur in the American Midwest, in a state that used to govern by the motto “Forward!” but now governs by the motto “Backward!” Besides moving somewhere else, my top goals in life are getting my cat to stop eating the dish towels and writing things that make people feel like they’re not alone in the world.

Oh, and also getting married, like, pronto. Last month, our legislature removed most legal recognitions for my domestic partnership (and everyone else’s) effective at the end of the calendar year. Because apparently if we all have the right to marry now, we must marry at shotgun speed. At least according to Wisconsin.

As stressful as all that is, an emergency wedding sounds like it would make a good basis for a romance novel! Maybe I’ll write one on that theme after the dust settles …

Give the readers a brief summary of your latest book.

My latest book isn’t just mine. It’s the work of nine different authors who each wrote paranormal short stories featuring gay/MMM ménages a trois. I gathered and edited these erotic tales into an anthology called Myths, Moons & Mayhem.

I had so much fun putting this collection together. It has the paranormal creatures you’d typically expect—werewolves, vampires, ghosts—but it’s also got aliens, Bigfoot, and even a fae lord or two. A couple stories don’t have any supernatural beings at all, just ordinary humans interacting with the world of magic. For the reader, it’s like going out on Halloween night and coming back with a basketful of all different kinds of treats—each story is unique, and each is delectable.

What genre does it fall in?

The stories in Myths, Moons, and Mayhem are all paranormal gay ménage and falls somewhere between erotica and erotic romance. They’re all incredibly sexy, most have a romantic aspect to the three-man relationship, and all have happy endings. Since they’re short stories, you don’t get the complete romantic arc of a 60,000-word erotic romance novel, but there’s still a lot of love between these pages.

To be honest, a lot of these stories got me in the feels as much as any romance novel!

Why did you choose to write GLBTQ romance? Why not another genre?

I do write other genres, but I like writing about queer people because I’m queer myself and want to read more stories about people who share that in common with me. I end up writing romance a lot because I especially want to read happy stories—most of the ones I had access to growing up ended up sadly, or at least with a lot of tragedy between the pages.

Two exceptions I can think of are Maurice by E.M. Forster, which I loved and still do, and Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden, which a lot of people love but wasn’t for me, because at the time it hurt to read about queer teenagers finding their happily ever after when I didn’t even know where to meet any! (I’m a child of the 1980s.) I mostly wanted to read about adults falling in love, because I could envision that as my future. It would be interesting to go back and read Annie on My Mind to see if I enjoyed it more now.

How do you relax?

Taking pictures of animals, from insects to fish to birds and beyond. I don’t like to take pictures of people; unless you’re dealing with actors, it can become an awkward because the usual rules of social interaction don’t apply. But animals don’t pose and don’t pay much attention to me beyond eyeing me up as potential predator or prey.

The other reason I like photographing animals is that it requires a lot of focus. The animal isn’t posing for me, so I need to be in the moment, ready to take a shot at the exact instant the animal does something interesting.

It doesn’t matter how long my to-do list is or how stressed out I am. If I leave the house/home office with my camera and find something to take pictures of, I will forget about my human obligations for a while.

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About Myths Moons and Mayhem

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Myths, moons, and mayhem make the perfect threesome—and so do the men in this anthology.

Enjoy nine erotic stories of paranormal ménages a trois fueled by lust and magic, where mystical forces collide with the everyday world and even monsters have their own demons to conquer.

A werewolf gets a lust-fueled lesson on fitting in with the pack, a professor unlocks ancient secrets and two men’s hearts, and a pair of supernaturals find themselves at the erotic mercy of a remarkable human. Ghosts, fairies, aliens, and mere mortals test the boundaries of their desires, creating magic of their own.

Editor Dale Cameron Lowry brings you tales by favorite authors such as Rob Rosen and Clare London, as well as by newcomers to the genre. The paranormal lust and polymythic beings of Myths, Moons & Mayhem will spark your fantasies and fuel your bonfires.

Giveaway

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To celebrate the release of the paranormal gay ménage anthology Myths, Moons & Mayhem, editor Dale Cameron Lowry is giving away a bunch of paranormal and ménage ebooks for your reading pleasure.

Enter to win here.

About Dale Cameron Lowry

Dale Cameron Lowry had a jagged forehead scar before Harry Potter made it cool. When not busy fighting evil, Dale writes and edits queer romance and speculative fiction. Come to think of it, maybe those are ways of fighting evil too.

You can find the most up-to-date list of Dale’s books and anthologies at www.dalecameronlowry.com.

 

Thank you for telling us more about yourself and good luck with the new anthology.

Author Spotlight ~ Lucy Felthouse

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT LUCY

A warm welcome to today’s Spotlight Author, Lucy Felthouse.

Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m 32, and from Derbyshire, England. I work from home with my scruffy dog, Scamp, for company. I fit my writing in between all my other work tasks, and somehow it all works out! I see one of the later questions is about hobbies, so I’ll tell more then…

What would people be most surprised to know about you?
That I enjoy knitting and jigsaws

How do you relax?
Watching TV, reading, going out walking, spending time with my other half.

How long have you been writing and what made you fall in love with writing?
I’ve been writing ever since I was a child, and I think what made me fall in love with writing was my love of reading. Ever since I was old enough, I’ve been an avid reader, and I loved getting lost in those worlds of adventure, and that seemed to transfer across to wanting to create those worlds, too.

Did you always want to be a writer?
Yes, ever since I was a child. I’d be constantly making up stories and scribbling away in notebooks, proclaiming I was going to be a writer when I grew up. When I grew up, of course, I also became aware that it’s not quite as simple as that—but I’m grateful that at least part of what I do as my job is write stories.

What are your ambitions for your writing career?
I actually completed quite a few of my smaller ambitions a few years ago (i.e. getting stories published in certain anthologies, publishing a full-length novel by the time I was 30), so I’m doing okay! But now, it’d be great to maybe hit the USA Today bestseller list, and start earning more regular money from my writing, so I can drop some of my other work and dedicate more time to my writing. I’m lucky that I have some great readers who enjoy what I do, so I hope that along the way I’ll continue writing stories that they continue to like!

Why did you choose to write GLBTQ romance? Why not another genre?
It’s not all I write—it’s just part of it. I started out writing mainly straight stories, but then I saw a call for submissions for a lesbian anthology, so I decided to give it a go. I was lucky enough to have a story accepted for publication, so I continued writing lesbian stories alongside my straight stuff. Eventually I branched out into writing gay stuff, too, and now I tend to write whatever takes my fancy. It means I never get bored because I write such a huge variety. I am conscious I might alienate some people since I write it all under one name, but there’s already so much to do as a writer that I decided not to split it all out into different pen names. I just make sure it’s clear what pairings books are before people pick them up.

Do you write any other genre?
I’d probably say more subgenres. Everything I write has some kind of romance or sex in it, but I’ve penned paranormals, contemporaries, pure erotica, thrillers, spy thrillers, and so on. It’s great that romance/erotica allows for such variety, really. There’s absolutely no need to write books in the same vein if you don’t want to.

Describe a scene in your writing that has made you laugh or cry?
Hmm… I can’t say too much without giving away a huge plot point, but there was a revealing scene in The Persecution of the Wolves (M/M and M/F werewolf thriller/mystery) which made me cry as I wrote it.

Give the readers a brief summary of your latest book.
My latest book is actually a re-release. I’ve been getting rights back to various books, so I’ve been working on getting them back out there. The Sweetest Revenge is a sexy lesbian tale with a gorgeous biker chick and some spanking!

Blurb
Abigail’s had a crush on Mackenzie the motorcycle courier for months, but Mackenzie doesn’t even know she exists. Nothing exists for Mackenzie, though, except for her pride and joy—her Ducati Monster.

After an unpleasant encounter, Abigail decides to get her own back on Mackenzie—in the worst possible way. Despite the pleas of her colleagues, Abigail plans to hide Mackenzie’s precious motorbike, and take the haughty so and so down a peg or two.
Naturally, when Mackenzie discovers her bike is gone, there are fireworks. It’s April 1st, so she suspects trickery rather than criminal activity, but that doesn’t mean the person responsible will be getting off lightly…
http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk/published-works/the-sweetest-revenge/

Share a few words about your latest book, other than the usual blurb.
This is a Sapphic short story featuring pride, trickery, revenge and an interesting use for leather motorcycle gloves…

What does your writing process look like?
It varies hugely. I have to prioritise my paid work, so I fit my writing in around that, depending on what deadlines I’m dealing with at the time. I’m very organized, so somehow it all works out, but I can occasionally be found pounding away on my laptop keyboard mere hours before deadlines, eager to get things finished and sent off!

When/where is your favourite time/place to write?
As I said above, I fit my writing in around my other work, so I don’t often get a choice about what time to write. It just happens when it happens. Though it’s generally after lunch. I deal with other things from when I start work up until lunchtime, then carve out some writing time after I’ve eaten, and I’m a bit more awake. The place I get the vast majority of my writing done is in my home office, at my laptop. I might occasionally take a notebook into the garden in the summer, or into my bedroom if I need to get away from the screen, but not often, and only a few words get written that way.

What genre/s do you enjoy reading in your free time?
Pretty much anything, really. I’m not a huge fan of fantasy and sci-fi, but other than that, anything with an interesting premise is enough to get me turning the pages.

What was the last book you read? What did you like about it?
Enemy of the State by Kyle Mills (Vince Flynn). It was an absorbing, fast-paced thriller which drew me in but wasn’t so complex that I had to think about it too much, or go back and re-read bits. I’m not a fan of overcomplicated books since I do most of my reading before bed, so if it gets complicated and I’m sleepy, my brain can’t handle it.

What hobbies do you have outside of writing?
Reading, watching TV, going to the cinema, spending time in the countryside with my other half and my dog, travelling.

Author Bio
Lucy Felthouse is the award-winning author of erotic romance novels Stately Pleasures (named in the top 5 of Cliterati.co.uk’s 100 Modern Erotic Classics That You’ve Never Heard Of, and an Amazon bestseller), Eyes Wide Open (winner of the Love Romances Café’s Best Ménage Book 2015 award, and an Amazon bestseller), The Persecution of the Wolves and Hiding in Plain Sight. Including novels, short stories and novellas, she has over 160 publications to her name. She owns Erotica For All, and is one eighth of The Brit Babes. Find out more about her writing at http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk, or on Twitter or Facebook. Sign up for automatic updates on Amazon or BookBub. Subscribe to her newsletter and get a free eBook: http://www.subscribepage.com/lfnewsletter

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