jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Let's welcome EAB and check out this new offering!

Title: Black Snow

Author: EAB

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Dreamspinner

Publication Date: 11/7/16

Word Count: 162,045


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Hello,

I'd like to thank Dreamspinner Press and Jana for hosting me today. Throughout my career I've had quite a few people message me about my writing process, so I decided to share my secrets here! I figure I've got about 500 words to kill, so why not. Step 1. Brainstorm- Just letting the ideas glob and gel together in my brain. A good way to do this is to read a ton. It oils the gears in your head and gets the story juices flowing.

Step 2. Organize- Getting all the research stuff I need. Looking up words, cultures, histories. Creating character names, charts, profiles. Figuring out whether it's going to be a novella, novel or short story!

Step 3. Outline- Creating a basic outline for the story. Later I expand this outline to include specific dates and major scenes. I also figure out what the climax of my story is.

Step 4. Write it!!!- And I try not to just stare at the computer. I don't worry too much about editing. I just write the story as it comes to me, and pray I don't fall asleep in front of the laptop! If I have writers block I take a break and read a book, but that rarely happens once the engines are revved.

Step 5. Writing induced stress- It's inevitable. It's going to happen. Just accept it and deal with it! I deal with it by taking a hot bath and reading some good old fashioned smut.

Step 6. Edit- Editing is hard work, but it's necessary! This is the fun part where you go back and get to ask yourself a million times, "What the f%*k did I just write?"

Step 7. Submit- This is the part where you get to freak out about whether or not your manuscript will be accepted!

Step 8. Self- loathing- Congratulations, you wrote a book. Too bad you're rereading it for the seventh time and realize it's terrible.

Step 9. Acceptance- Holy crap they actually want my book?!

Step 10. Contracts- Holy crap they really DO want my book!

Congratulations. You've now completed my writing steps. Relax, rinse, and repeat! Thanks for reading my silly blog! I hope that you'll follow me along my tour for excerpts of Black Snow, giveaways and the special alternate ending at the end of the blog tour! Thanks again!



Blurb: Prince Brier Snow has lived in the shadow of King Snow’s exalted memory. However, his fate changes when he nears his majority and Lirend’s steward queen attempts to dethrone him by exploiting an obscure requirement in the late king’s will: a yearlong sabbatical.

Brier travels to the desolate land of Aire to train under the Ceve guild, scorned refugees of war, including their guarded leader, Roland. Brier’s skillful master unlocks hidden potential, and what begins as a dutiful bond turns into ill-fated affection. When Brier returns to the capital, he’s carrying proof of his indiscretions with Roland—and his condition grows more apparent with each passing day. An affair with the huntsman is a scandal Brier’s enemies can use against him, but the birth of an heir is a burden even Brier is not sure he can bear.

Roland Archer, a man with a murky past, is skeptical of the contract to train the prince but willing to do anything for the guild’s freedom. Despite his best intentions, he is smitten by Lirend’s future king. Roland has resigned himself to solitude, but fate has other plans—for him, for Brier, and for Lirend’s oppressed subjects. Can Roland help Brier face a power-hungry queen and a country torn asunder? Either they will bring equality to a land that desperately needs it, or they’ll be thwarted by cunning enemies and an illusory curse.

Buy link: Dreamspinner // Amazon // Barnes & Noble’s



EAB’s BIO: EAB is an airline steward/stewardess—depending on the day—who loves writing erotic fiction. This translates to serving Wild Turkey bourbon at 38,000 feet and writing smut at 3:00 a.m. EAB spends free-time role-playing and reading. While EAB’s true passion is writing, EAB also enjoys reaching high scores in nerdism, spending time with family (cats included), and watching anime. An East Coaster at heart, EAB loves New York’s Broadway and greasy, heartburn-inducing pizza. Feel free to drop a line or recommend some good reads! Always looking for a new book to devour!

Contact information: email Facebook Goodreads
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Will You Be My Escort, #2 in The Carlisles Series
200 pages
Dreamspinner Press
Cover by Reese Dante

WillYouBeMyEscortFS_v1

A Carlisles novel
Jackson Carlisle has rotten luck with men and women, and after an especially bad situation, he takes a step back from romance. But with a two-week family reunion in Hawaii looming, his mom is determined to set him up with one of the sweet singles she knows would be perfect for him. A normal person would tell her no and be done with it. Instead, Jackson tells her he has a boyfriend. The only problem? He doesn’t.

Aaron Wilkes is an escort. He’s a little surprised when a friend’s girlfriend hires him to date her brother, but he’s had stranger jobs. Jackson is cute, and he thinks a fling with Aaron might be just the kind of no-strings-attached fun he needs to get over his dry spell. As they explore the islands together, their carefully laid plans begin to get away from them. Feelings aren’t supposed to come into play, but that shouldn’t be a problem. After all, you can’t fall in love in two weeks….

Excerpt:

Part of being in a large family means everyone knows everything. And it’s never forgotten, because inevitably someone remembers it. So Jackson doesn’t know how he hasn’t heard about the family reunion until he’s staring at the ridiculous card on his dark-cream tiled counter. Someone has taken the time to make a collage of the entire family’s faces and merge them into lettering that reads “You’re invited to the Carlisle Family Reunion.” He’s not sure whether to be impressed or appalled.

His phone starts to trill. He picks it up without looking. “Are you seeing this?” asks James. “I think I’m hallucinating it.”

“No,” says Jackson. “I’ve got it in front of me. It’s painfully real.”

The last thing in the world he wants to do is attend a family reunion. It’s a two-week-long affair at a resort in Hawaii (which would be lovely if the family reunion aspect was removed), occurring in three weeks’ time, during which they’re going to be surrounded by obnoxious extended family. It’s like something from a horror film.

“I don’t know why you’re complaining,” he says to James. “You’ve got a boyfriend.” He thinks about it. “Can Bastien not come?” He runs two businesses and works a lot, but he’s got a partner who can probably take things over.

“Bastien can come,” grumbles James. “He’s annoyingly excited for it.”

“He’s in for a rude awakening,” mutters Jackson. Bastien hasn’t met anyone outside of their immediate close-knit group yet—he wasn’t around for the last reunion. He’s probably expecting everyone to be like their particular branch of Carlisles. The extended family isn’t like them. Well, in some ways they are, but in others… no. They’re an eclectic group of people who mostly only bother to get together and converse for a period longer than a two-word holiday or birthday card every five years.

There’s a reason for that.

His call waiting goes off. He pulls the phone from his ear. “Mom’s calling,” he says on a sigh. “I’ll call you back.”

“Don’t bother,” says James. “I’m coming over, and we’re going to drink till we forget we’ve been invited.”

Jackson rolls his eyes. “You’re a drama queen.” He drops the call in the middle of James’s indignant squawks. “Hello,” he says to his mom.

“Hello, sweetie,” she says. “Did you get the invitation?”

He glares at their obnoxious collaged faces. “I did.” He looks closer. Someone has photoshopped a curled mustache onto James’s face. He holds the phone away from him as he snickers. Their cousin Bobby must have made the card. He hates James. “James has a mustache in the picture,” he tells his mom. “Did you see that?”

Her sigh is long and pained. “I did. I’m calling to let you know you have to go. You can’t get out of this.” She goes silent, but there’s something about it that makes Jackson feel like there’s more coming. He has a feeling he’s not going to like it. “I know things have been rough, since you had to move and all….”

And he called that.

“But I have a friend, she has a delightful daughter, and I think you two would really get along. She might take some of the pressure off the reunion? And I think it’ll be good for you. I don’t mean to worry, but you haven’t dated anyone since Angel.” He winces at the name. “It’s time to try again, don’t you think? Move on? We’re all worried about you, dear. I have a friend with a son too, he’s a bit older than you, but he’s got a nice job.”

The last thing he wants is to be set up by his mother. A sane person would tell her to butt out and hang up. Politely of course; this is his mom after all. Jackson has a short supply of sanity, though, and he’s been running on very little sleep for the last month. What comes out of his mouth, instead of “no, thank you” or “I don’t need someone else to be happy,” is “I’m already seeing someone.”





Buy Links:

Dreamspinner


Barnes& Noble
All Romance
Amazon

Giveaway: Paperback copy of Dinner for One
a Rafflecopter giveaway




Bio:
Meg Harding is a graduate of UCF and Anglia Ruskin University. For as long as she can remember, writing has always been her passion, but she had an inability to ever actually finish anything. She’s immensely happy that her inability has fled and looks forward to where her mind will take her next. She’s a sucker for happy endings, the beach, and superheroes. In her dream life she owns a wildlife conservation and is surrounded by puppies. She’s a film buff, voracious reader, and a massive geek.

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jana_denardo: (kept tears)

Blood Lines Tour Banner


Title: Blood Lines

Author: A.L. Bates

Genre: Gay Romance, Science Fiction, Thriller

Length: Novella

Publisher: Wayward Ink Publishing




Synopsis


Mark Thomas owns his own “New York”-themed bar on an off-world colony.


Nate Fox is an ex-con gone straight.


He’s also Mark’s best friend and brother-in-law.


Mark has feelings for Nate. Nate has feelings for Mark.


But neither man is prepared to compromise their friendship or Mark’s relationship with Danny.


Blood Lines is a story about fidelity, trust, and respect. It’s a story about honesty and learning from mistakes.


And it’s a story about second chances.


Blood Lines AL Bates Cover



Excerpt

Mark’s hands were still shaking. Nate knew from experience Larry kept a bottle of scotch in his desk. He pulled it out and passed it to Mark. After a few mouthfuls, Mark started to sob.

“Sorry,” he said. “Sarah was a friend. I’ve known her for years.” He took another mouthful and replaced the cap. “What now?”

“I don’t know,” Nate said with a sigh. “You okay?”

“Not really. But I guess I’ll be fine. What about you?”

“I’m good.”

“Your face is cut.”

Nate touched his cheek. He was bleeding. He didn’t even remember getting hurt.

“Is there a first aid kit in here?”

Nate pointed to a cabinet and Mark went to retrieve it. He pulled out some antiseptic wipes and dabbed at Nate’s face. Nate tensed. The intimacy was unexpected. It had been a while since someone had touched him so tenderly.

“Does it hurt?” Mark asked.

“No.”

“You’re tense.”

“I’ve been shot at.”

Mark rolled his eyes. “I suppose that’s a good excuse. It’s not too deep. Besides, I hear the ladies love a man with scars.”

Nate glanced away, feeling a flush affect his cheeks.

“Sorry, that was insensitive.”

“It doesn’t matter.”

Buy Links


Don’t miss the release discounts at all retailers and get your copy up to 48 hours after release.


WIP: http://www.waywardinkpublishing.com/?p=2080

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/

Amazon DE: https://www.amazon.de/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/

Amazon AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/

ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-bloodlines-2055134-145.html





Book Trailer



Giveaway


 


About the author


A.L. BATES has a keen interest in Sci-fi and adventure novels and enjoys writing stories with strong characters in imaginative backgrounds. Although an avid writer, Deep is the first published novella by A.L. Bates.


A.L. Bates can be found on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authoralbates

jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Hi Everyone. Let's welcome Cheryl who brings us her newest release!

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Author Name: Cheryl Headford

Book Length 214 Pages

Book Name: Shade’s Champion

Release Date: 18th December 2015

Publisher: Wayward Ink Publishing

Cover Art by: Kellie Dennis: Book Covers by Design



BLURB

Shade has been kept in the dark for eight long years. Now he’s facing a world that terrifies him. A world that seems to hold no place for him.

When the authorities are unable to find a home for Shade, Penny, reluctantly accepts him into the secure school she manages, despite thinking it’s the wrong place for him. Penny fears for his safety among the other troubled children. In an attempt to forestall the disaster she predicts will happen she appoints one of them as his champion.

Dory, an engaging seventeen year old with mental health issues, is proud to be chosen as Shade’s champion and throws his heart and soul into the job. In doing so he is forced to face the thing he fears most – his own emotions.

An unexpected friendship begins to grow into something more, until a spiteful act tears them apart and leaves them broken.

When Dory falls ill, Shade is forced to face his demons and struggles to find the strength and courage he needs to fight for the right to love, and to be there for his champion when he needs him most.






Excerpt


It was the last week of June: a beautiful day, with glorious sunshine and a soft breeze. Dorien and Shade were in the conservatory. It was the closest Dorien had managed to get Shade to the outside. Initially he’d been terrified of the room with its glass walls, just a flimsy skin between them and the big wide world. Dorien had tried to get him to lie on one of the loungers and gaze at the clouds, but he couldn’t look up at the sky and always kept his eyes down when they were in there, avoiding even glancing out of the windows if he could.

Today, they were reading a book. Shade had been working hard to learn to read and was taking to it quickly. He was still at a very basic level and taking his lessons alone with an individual teacher, but there was talk of beginning to integrate him with the younger children for some of the wider-ranging lessons. Of course, that led to ridicule from the older kids, but Shade didn’t seem to mind. Shade didn’t seem to mind anything much. He was the calmest and most laid back person Dorien had ever met. Even Penny and Rich got frustrated and annoyed sometimes, if not with him then with the others or life in general, but Shade never seemed to be in a bad mood. Although sometimes he got kind of sad and distant.

There was nothing sad or distant about him today, though. Shade’s head was bent over the book and his fingers traced the words as he worked through them slowly and methodically.


PRE-ORDER LINKS:

WIP

ARe


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Meet The Author


Cheryl was born into a poor mining family in the South Wales Valleys. Until she was 16, the toilet was at the bottom of the garden and the bath hung on the wall. Her refrigerator was a stone slab in the pantry and there was a black lead fireplace in the kitchen. They look lovely in a museum but aren’t so much fun to clean.

Cheryl has always been a storyteller. As a child, she’d make up stories for her nieces, nephews and cousin and they’d explore the imaginary worlds she created, in play.

Later in life, Cheryl became the storyteller for a re enactment group who travelled widely, giving a taste of life in the Iron Age. As well as having an opportunity to run around hitting people with a sword, she had an opportunity to tell stories of all kinds, sometimes of her own making, to all kinds of people. The criticism was sometimes harsh, especially from the children, but the reward enormous.

It was here she began to appreciate the power of stories and the primal need to hear them. In ancient times, the wandering bard was the only source of news, and the storyteller the heart of the village, keeping the lore and the magic alive. Although much of the magic has been lost, the stories still provide a link to the part of us that still wants to believe that it’s still there, somewhere.

In present times, Cheryl lives in a terraced house in the valleys with her son and menagerie of three cats, a dog and a dragon. Her daughter has deserted her for the big city, but they’re still close.

Immersed, as always, in the world of fantasy, she maintains a burning desire to share the stories and these days it’s in the form of books which all contain her spark and unique view on life, the universe and everything.


Where to Find the Author




Facebook
Twitter: @SevenPointStar
Goodreads
Website
Blog


Published With


Published With
Flying with Red Haircrow: The Runaway, Enigma I and II
Wayward Ink Press: Project X, Stranded Anthology, Of Heaven and Hell Anthology, Ari
Cool Dudes Publishing: Draven's Gate
Featherweight Press: The Face in the Window, Memories of Forgotten Love
Harmony Ink: Hostage


Giveaway


I have two copies of the ebook to give away to randomly selected commenters on the Shade’s Champion cover reveal or blog post on my website Website
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Say hello to Ioana Visan who is here with the information for her latest release: the Law & Crucible stories. Check it out and there's a giveaway too!

Law and Crucible Saga 1 & 2 & 3 by Ioana Visan

Release Day Blitz Date: December 15


Series: Law and Crucible Saga

Titles: No Port to Land, Point of Origin, Bonds of Steel

Author: Ioana Visan

Release Date: December 15, 2015

Genre: Science Fiction, Space Opera

Length: Novella, short story


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No Port to Land

Nia is one of the few souls left aboard a drifting tomb known as The Pacific. The spaceship carries a deadly plague, and by the time they receive a distress call from an approaching shuttle, they are all close to losing hope they might ever escape alive. When the will of the shuttle crew and that of the survivors on The Pacific clash, Nia has to pick a side to save what she holds most dear.

Goodreads: here

Amazon: here


Point of Origin


Suffering from neural degeneration, Thea is fading away in an asylum with no hope of ever leaving it.

When Captain Law offers her an opportunity to board his ship in return for her help, the astrophysicist is faced with having to learn to trust them or end up in another asylum with slim chance for recovery. And then her secret will be lost.

With a contract that they are desperate to obtain and a rogue asteroid in enemy territory, Captain Law and his crew must keep Thea free from harm, but a missing crew member and a band of misfits thwart their efforts and send them on a mission no one was prepared for.

Can Thea and Captain Law learn to work together for one goal or will long-held secrets and mistrust shake their resolve and destroy their efforts?

Goodreads: here
Amazon: here


Bonds of Steel


On a routine trip across the asteroid field, the robot, Del, and unregistered AI, Vee, meet trouble. With Captain Law and his crew having been put into stasis, their only chance of survival will mean placing themselves at the mercy of what few resources they have. Without a human to assist them, Del and Vee will be vulnerable and so too will the ship and all the lives on board.

Despite their best efforts to avoid unwanted visitors, another ship is en route. Their arrival does not guarantee the safety of those on board, and may ultimately lead to their demise.

With his position on the ship on the line, can Del stave off an attack or are their deaths inevitable?

Goodreads: here
Amazon: here


Price:
$0.99 each
Free
with Kindle Unlimited


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About the Author:

Award-winning writer Ioana Visan has always dreamed about reaching the stars, but since she can’t, she writes about it.

After fighting the apocalypse aftermath in Human Instincts, she played with shapeshifters in Blue Moon Café Series: Where Shifters Meet for Drinks, she dealt with vampires in The Impaler Legacy series, she designed prosthetics in Broken People, and she helped wingless fairies in The Weight of a Wing before tackling a space opera saga.

Aside from publishing short stories in various Romanian magazines and anthologies, she published a Romanian short story collection, Efectul de nautil, and the Romanian edition of Human Instincts.

She received the Encouragement Award from The European Science Fiction Society at Eurocon 2013.


Social Links:

Website: http://www.ioanavisan.tk
Blog: http://weirdvision2001.blogspot.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorIoanaVisan
Twitter: https://twitter.com/weirdvision
Amazon: http://amazon.com/author/ioanavisan
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/ioanavisan



Rafflecopter Giveaway Code:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Alternate link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/bf37c9104/?
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Welcome Louise Lyons back, everyone. She's here with her latest Beyond the Scars which hits a lot of my favorite character tropes in the case, a young man fighting back from abuse. It's always good to see someone climb out of the ashes.


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Blurb
After years of physical and mental abuse, Tommy Chadwick finally finds the strength to leave Colin, his tormentor. But Tommy soon finds that escaping his violent boyfriend was only the first step on his path to recovery.

Now he must overcome feelings of worthlessness in order to rebuild his battered self-esteem.

Tommy’s lack of self-confidence prevents him from going out... at first, but then has him ricocheting from one man to another, desperately trying to please them in his search for love and acceptance.

After being rejected on New Year’s Eve, and then beaten after leaving the gay bar, he agrees to accompany his best friend, Sarah, to a martial arts club. There Tommy meets Marcus, a strong older man, who at first becomes his friend, introducing Tommy to new interests, and later, tentatively asks him on a date.

Will Marcus be the man to help Tommy put his past behind him and fall in love for real?

Excerpt
Shane rang me the next day after work, and my heart leapt when his name came up on my phone. I was in the lounge talking to Sarah, and I jogged upstairs to my room as I answered the call. I told myself he couldn’t wait until Saturday and wanted to speak to me in the meantime.

“Hi, Shane,” I said brightly.

“Hi.” He cleared his throat. “About Saturday....”

“Yes?” I wondered if the arrangement for the weekend was to change.

“It’s not gonna happen. I’m sorry.”

“Oh!” I felt the smile slip from my face, and I waited for him to elaborate.

“I’ve got a girlfriend. She’s been working in Spain for a few weeks, and I didn’t think she was coming back until next month, but she turned up this morning. Sorry.”

“Girlfriend?” I echoed, stunned.

“Yeah, I’m bi.”

“I thought you said you broke up with someone recently.”

“Well, she’s been away a long time, and we’d had a row when I said that.” I could picture him shrugging as he spoke.

“Oh. Okay. No problem.” I did my best to sound as if I didn’t care, while my heart plummeted into my shoes and tears prickled at the back of my eyes. When I ended the call, I reminded myself about everything that had been wrong in the very brief relationship. He didn’t talk, we had nothing in common, and he was inconsiderate in bed. But I’d liked him, far too much, and it fucking hurt that he had a girlfriend I didn’t know about. It hurt that he’d probably only been using me to fill in the time until she came back.

I curled up on my bed and wrapped my arms around myself. I wouldn’t let myself cry—I’d done far too much of that over Colin—but my throat hurt with the effort of not giving in to it, and my jaw ached from grinding my teeth. I lost track of time as I lay there feeling sorry for myself and wondering if I should have stayed with Gary after all.

“Tommy?” Sarah called softly from the doorway and waited.

“Yeah.” I rolled onto my back and forced a smile onto my face.

“What’s wrong, hun?” She closed the door and came to sit on the edge of my bed. My smile apparently hadn’t been very convincing, and I let it slip away.

“Nothing, I’m okay.”

“You were all excited when your phone rang, and now you look like a puppy that’s been kicked.”

“Thanks.” I grimaced and tried to laugh it off.

“Is it that bloke you’ve been seeing?”

“Shane. I’m not seeing him anymore. He’s got a girlfriend,” I blurted out. My eyes smarted again, and I blinked.

“I’m sorry.” Sarah rested her hand on my shoulder and gave it a squeeze. “But you’d only seen him a couple of times, hadn’t you?”

“Yeah, well, I’m a prick. We didn’t even have much in common. Less than me and Gary. But somehow I suppose I....” I sniffed miserably and sat up. “I really liked him.”

“Oh, Tommy.” Sarah slid her arms around me to give me a cuddle, and I sagged against her. I felt pathetic. I couldn’t say I was heartbroken over someone I’d had sex with twice, but I felt the sharp pain of rejection all over again, and the fragile confidence I’d built up since I left Colin began to crumble. Shane slipped from my mind, and I thought of a situation I’d been in with Colin more times than I could count.

“Get your shit packed and get out of here, Tommy.” Colin sneered at me from the couch. “You’re a pathetic waste of space and I’m sick of the sight of you.”

“You seriously want me to leave? Who’s going to pay the bills, then?” I asked.

“I’ll have no trouble getting a new flat mate. I don’t know why I haven’t done this sooner. There are plenty of cute boys out there. I don’t know why I stuck with the ugly little slut you are for so long.”

“Fine. I’ll go.” I turned away from him as hot tears spilled down my cheeks. He didn’t want me, didn’t care about me. I felt lost and crushed and relieved all at the same time. Maybe this time he’d really let me go.

I went into the bedroom and found my rucksack. I began packing my clothes first, while I sobbed and snuffled, and repeatedly wiped my eyes and nose on my sleeves. It was just after our first anniversary. He’d given me the ring and told me how much he loved me, how special I was to him, and how things would be perfect between us from now on. I’d almost forgotten all the times he’d hurt me, and even though I didn’t like the ring, I’d been delighted to receive it. It made me believe he really did love me. The next couple of days had been perfect—until now. I could barely remember what had started it—something to do with him not liking my suggestion we go out somewhere. We spent our whole lives cooped up in the flat except for me going to work and him going fishing with Gary. I’d thought we could do something nice together, but he could only see that I wanted to get out so I could look at other men or get attention from them.

I crammed the last few items into my rucksack and set it aside. I looked up to find Colin standing in the doorway, watching me.

“I’m sorry, babe,” he said. “I didn’t mean any of it. You know how jealous I get. I love you so much, and I want to keep you all to myself.”

“So why did you tell me to leave?” I said in a small voice.

“I wasn’t thinking straight. I don’t want you to leave. I never want you to leave.” He came to me and took my hands. He stroked his thumb over the ring I wore. “This means we’re together forever. I’m never gonna let you go, Tommy. I promise.” He began kissing my face all over, tasting my tears. “Forgive me. Come on. You know I love you.”


The day had ended with him fucking me on the floor from behind, so hard he’d almost smashed my head into the wall. I’d been so sore afterward, I could barely sit down without yelping.

“Tommy, are you sure this is just about Shane?” Sarah was stroking my hair, and I realized I’d wept all over her blouse and left a wet patch on her shoulder. I pulled away and rubbed my hands over my face.

“Sorry. Uh... yeah, I’m just being stupid. I thought things were going well. Clearly I was wrong.”

“Are you sure that’s all? You seem so upset.”


“Yeah, I’m fine.”

“You know, I don’t get why you broke up with Gary. He seemed really nice.” Sarah frowned in puzzlement. “He treated you well, didn’t he?”

“Yes, but we had nothing in common. We never did anything except... never mind.” I laughed and felt my face heat up. “I’m fine, really.”

I was fine. I moped for two days and then went out to La Rues again. I met Paul, whom I dated for two weeks. He was ginger and freckled, and I wasn’t really attracted to him, but he was keen on me and he made me feel better. My confidence rose again, and I forgot about Shane. I felt good and I began to feel I could get anyone I wanted.


Buy Links
Wayward Ink Publishing

Amazon US

Amazon UK

ARe

B&N


Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Author Bio
Louise Lyons comes from a family of writers. Her mother has a number of poems published in poetry anthologies, her aunt wrote poems for the church, and her grandmother sparked her inspiration with tales of fantasy. Louise first ventured into writing short stories at the grand old age of 8, mostly about little girls and ponies. She branched into romance in her teens, and MM romance a few years later, but none of her work saw the light of day until she discovered FanFiction in her late 20s.

Posting stories based on some of her favorite movies, provoked a surprisingly positive response from readers. This gave Louise the confidence to submit some of her work to publishers, and made her take her writing “hobby” more seriously.

Louise lives in the UK, about an hour north of London, with a mad Dobermann, and a collection of tropical fish and tarantulas. She works in the insurance industry by day, and spends every spare minute writing. She is a keen horse-rider, and loves to run long-distance. Some of her best writing inspiration comes to her, when her feet are pounding the open road. She often races into the house afterward, and grabs pen and paper to make notes.

Louise has always been a bit of a tomboy, and one of her other great loves is cars and motorcycles. Her car and bike are her pride and joy, and she loves to exhibit the car at shows, and take off for long days out on the bike, with no one for company but herself.

Social Media
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jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Hey everyone, welcome Brynn Stein back to my blog with her newest offering! It's from the young adult, Harmony Ink imprint.

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This is the sixth stop on my blog tour. I’m having such fun, as I always do on these tours, talking about various aspects of writing in general, and Ray of Sunlight in particular and getting to know all of you. Thanks so much for following the tour. If this is your first stop, feel free to go back and comment on the other three, listed below, to be entered to win one of five prizes. More about that later.
Thanks so much for having me on your blog today, Jana. It’s always nice to visit.

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As always, I find that homophobia and religion crept into this book when I wasn’t looking.
I live in an ultraconservative, small town in the Bible Belt. The people I work with are over the top fundamentalists. I often share some of the stories of things that happen to work on my blog in a recurring feature called Tales from the Bible Belt. Some of these people look like they’re two dimensional characters and they’re actual people. I’ve known some of them for almost four years now and couldn’t tell you one way that they’ve grown as a person. They feel they are “God’s chosen people” and apparently that mean they have no more room for personal growth.

Russ parents are modeled heavily on my bible thumping coworker, and another staff member whom I refer to as Mary in my Tales from the Bible Belt feature. CJ’s father is an amalgam of coworker and several other staff members.
The good thing about the negative side of religion creeping into my stories is that the positive side usually does too. In this book, Pete, Russ’s step-brother has recently started going to church and what he finds there isn’t anything like what his father spouts all the time. The youth pastor even comes to the house at one point to talk to Russ about a project he and CJ have going that the youth might want to help with. He takes that opportunity to tell Russ that he doesn’t believe God wants him to hate anyone. That he takes to heart the passage “Judge not, lest thee be judged,” as well as Jesus’ commandment to “Love your neighbor.”

Obvioiusly, I agree with the pastor’s form of faith over Russ’s parents’ brand of ‘religion’. This is a recurring theme in the book, though not the main one, as it is in many of my other stories.

In Haunted, a powerful, but homophobic man did a huge amount of damage over the years. In Living Again, Daniel’s uncle is also modeled after Bible Thumping Coworker, and is homophobic to the point of being irrational. In Through the Years, Edward himself struggles with internalized homophobia because his parents belong to a church that espouses hatred and even violence toward gays. At least in later years, they find a church that accepts and supports them.
I don’t know of a lot of churches around here that would do that. The best I’ve heard of around here are churches that just don’t say anything about LGBT issues at all. But that’s a vast improvement over most of them.

I don’t mean that this negative attitude is the norm for Christianity. Before I moved here, I found several really nice churches who would support any of their members or anyone in the community. That was still in the Bible belt, just in a larger town. So I’m sure the lack of choices around here plays a huge part in the narrow viewpoint, but it’s not really surprising that those attitudes tend to creep into my stories.

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What about all of you? Writers, do you find yourself tackling the same problems in different way in your books? Does it have to do with the challenges you face in your real life? Do you tackle the religious issue in your books? How so? Do you make sure you balance good with not so good? Or do you occasionally present only one view? Readers, do you like to read stories that include religious issues? Do you tolerate that issue as long as it’s not the main theme? Do you read it only if the sides are balanced or do you read stories that are all one side or the other?

Comment below for a chance to win.

Here’s how the giveaway will work. Visit as many sites as you want, as often as you want. Each comment will enter you to win one of the following prizes: 1st) An autographed paperback copy of Ray of Sunlight, 2nd) An electronic copy of Ray of Sunlight, 3rd) Your choice of audio or electronic copy of Living Again, 4th) An electronic copy of Through the Years, and 5th) an electronic copy of Haunted. The takeovers for Harmony Ink’s blog and Facebook page will be part of the tour, so comments on there will count. I will draw the winners during the FB takeover and will announce them then, but will come back and announce it to all the sites too. So, you don’t have to leave your email address here if you don’t want to, just remember to check back. You’re also welcome to leave your email in the comments if you’d rather or email me at brynnstein2@gmail.com with the subject heading of “just in case”, so I can contact you if you win, if you don’t want to have to stop back by the blog sites. You don’t have to be present at the FB takeover to win.

Thanks for playing.



Blog Tour Stops
3/3/2015 Bike Books Review http://bikebookreviews.blogspot.com/

3/4/2015 Grace Duncan http://www.grace-duncan.com/

3/5/2015 Susan Laine https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5221828.Susan_Laine/blog

3/6/2015 Jo Ramsey http://www.joramsey.com/blog/

3/7/2015 Alicia Nordwell http://ciasstories.blogspot.com/2015/01/visiting-author-brynn-stein-with-ray-of.html

3/8/2015 Jana Denardo https://www.goodreads.com/author_blog_posts/

3/9/2015 Lex Chase http://lexchase.com/blog/2015/03/09/welcome-brynn-stein-ray-sunlight/

3/10/2015 Sean Michael http://seanmichaelwrites.blogspot.ca/

3/11/2015 Charley Descoteaux http://cdescoteauxwrites.com/

3/12/2015 Anne Barwell http://anne-barwell.livejournal.com/

3/13/2015 Karenna Colcroft http://www.karennacolcroft.com

3/14/2015 Anna Butler http://annabutlerfiction.com/2015/03/14/brynn-stein/

3/15/2015 Nic Starr www.becausetwomenarebetterthanone.com

3/16/2015 Shae Conner http://shaeconnorwrites.com

3/17/2015 Jessica Davies http://jessicaskyedavies.blogspot.com/

3/18/2015 Aidee Ladnier http://www.aideeladnier.com.

3/19/2015 Emma Tett http://emmy-j.blogspot.co.uk/

3/20/2015 Harmony Ink Blog http://harmonyinkpress.com/

3/21/2015 Harmony Ink Facebook Page facebook.com/harmonyinkpress




Ray of Sunlight

Brynn Stein


Russ Michaels has his whole life ahead of him but no plans beyond dropping out of school as soon as he turns eighteen. He’s been in and out of juvenile detention for the last four years and thoroughly expects to end up in an adult penitentiary at some point. He hates life and everyone in it, especially this latest community service that he earned in lieu of juvie yet again.


CJ Calhoun has big plans. He wants to bring joy and happiness to sick and injured children for as long as he can by performing as a clown. The problem is, he has stage-four cancer and a horrible prognosis.


When circumstances throw these two polar opposites together, they find they have more in common than they imagined. CJ discovers Russ’s talent for art and arranges for Russ to create a mural in the hospital foyer, which leads to a tentative scholarship to the Art Institute. As life changes in ways neither of them could have expected, Russ must work harder than ever to better himself as CJ struggles with his deteriorating health.


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http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6176
http://www.harmonyinkpress.com/books/ray-of-sunlight-by-brynn-stein-261-b
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25005560-ray-of-sunlight?from_search=true



Brynn Stein

Brynn Stein has always loved to write. Fan fiction, original fiction, whatever. While Brynn wrote in numerous genres—everything from mystery, to contemporary, to supernatural—she had always tended toward strong male characters. And then she discovered “slash,” male/male romance, and all those strong male characters were finally allowed to express their love for one another. It seems that there are always at least two characters clamoring to tell Brynn their story.

Brynn lives in Virginia near her two grown daughters who encourage her writing and provide a sounding board for fledgling stories. When she isn’t writing, Brynn teaches children with special needs. In free time, when such a thing exists, she reads anything she can get her hands on, and haunts bookstores. She draws and paints, and enjoys the outdoors—especially if she can get to the beach—and is always thinking about her next story.

Please feel free to contact Brynn at any of the following:
http://brynnstein2.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/brynn.stein
brynnstein2@gmail.com
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Hi everyone. Give Charley a big welcome. She's here to talk about her story in Dreamspinner's Advent calendar!

Things you won’t learn about Ian by reading “Toy Run”

Thanks, Jana, for having me, and Happy Holidays!

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I’m visiting some of my wonderful friends to talk about my holiday story “Toy Run” and give away some goodies!

“Toy Run” was my contribution to the 2013 Dreamspinner Press Advent Calendar, Heartwarming. “Heartwarming” isn’t always easy for me—my stories usually veer off into darker, more angsty territory fairly quickly. That’s why I kept “Toy Run” short. The only problem with short stories is they don’t have a lot of room for backstory. Here’s a little taste of Ian Bowen’s backstory.

But first, a little about the giveaway! The Rafflecopter will be open through December 19th, and it’s packed with prizes—two gift cards, a hand-knit wool hat, and, of course, books!

1. When Ian was three, his mother dropped him off with her father and didn’t come back for him. He never met either of his parents.
2. Ian never felt he missed out on anything because he was raised by his grandfather. He does wish he would’ve come out to him before he died.
3. Ian’s grandfather was a Vietnam veteran and diesel mechanic. He rode his Harley with a fairly large group on a regular basis, but none of them were affiliated (no Sons of Anarchy-type drama for those guys ).

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“Toy Run,” by Charley Descoteaux
Former physical therapist and reluctant loner Ian Bowen has spent the three years since his grandfather’s death searching for a man to inspire him to park his Harley for a while—without much hope of finding him. On a whim, he shows up for a Toy Run and meets Ed Gonzalez, another loner with a pile of toys lashed to his bike. A few beers at the end-of-the-run party turn into an invite to Ed’s for homebrew. But instead of a night of fun, the unseasonable cold renders Ed immobile with pain. When he tells Ian he just needs meds, Ian does one of the things he does best—he massages Ed’s pain away, allowing him a rare restful night’s sleep and creating intimacy neither wants to lose. Ian thinks two men have to follow certain rules to be together, but Ed’s prepared to show him how wrong he is.
Excerpt:
IT WAS a terrible idea, riding north. For the same five hundred miles I could be in Vegas or San Diego—but terrible ideas were sort of my specialty. Besides, if it all went to hell, I’d just keep moving. Another specialty.

I backed up to the curb, killed the engine, and sat leaning against my pack. Hours early, again. It’s not easy to arrive fashionably late when you have nowhere else to be. I flipped the helmet visor up, and glare from the fog and mist made me want to flip it back down. It was dark when I left Ashland two hundred and fifty miles ago. I missed full dark, but by then the only dark to be found was somewhere over the Pacific. As it was, I could almost see the reflection of the floodlight bouncing off my helmet. Being black didn’t help that thing. Being wet probably didn’t either, but that was what I got for riding into Oregon in December.

A growl in my stomach kicked the rest of me into gear. A moment later my two-ton helmet sat where my ass had been, and I headed toward the truck-stop diner, leathers creaking like my knees would be by the end of the day if it didn’t warm up. Birds know what they’re doing, flying south for the winter.

Every head turned when the bells hanging on the front door slapped against the glass. The smell of toast and coffee and the warm air were welcoming enough. They watched me every step of the way, the redheaded stepchild coming in after curfew. They were half right.

I nodded to the man sitting beside the only empty stool at the counter and shrugged my jacket off before easing onto it. The stool on the end—things were looking up already. He nodded back and extended his hand.

“Ed Gonzalez.”

We shook.

“Ian Bowen.”

I grabbed a menu from the holder in front of me, but my stomach had gone from rumbling to shivering. In the space of one handshake, eating became less important than getting out from under his gaze. It usually took a lot more than a pair of dark eyes for me to give up my full name, but those weren’t just any eyes. So brown they were almost black, and full of the promise of rough sex.

Or an ass kicking. Hard to tell. Knowing things like that was not a specialty of mine.

Buy Toy Run: here


Rafflecopter:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Where and When:
Nov. 29: Tempeste O’Riley
Dec. 1: Grace R. Duncan
Dec. 8: Jana Denardo
Dec. 10: Kim Fielding
Dec. 11: Amber Kell
Dec. 16: Anne Barwell
Dec. 18: Skylar Cates

Charley Descoteaux has always heard voices. She was relieved to learn they were fictional characters, and started writing when they insisted daydreaming just wasn’t good enough. In exchange, they’ve agreed to let her sleep once in a while. Charley grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area during a drought, and found her true home in the soggy Pacific Northwest. She has survived droughts, earthquakes, floods, and over a decade living in an area affectionately known (in her strange little world) as Portland’s middle finger, but couldn’t make it through one day without stories.

Rattle Charley's cages—she'd love to hear from you!
Blog: http://cdescoteauxwrites.com/blog/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/charley.descoteaux.3
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CharleyDescote
Goodreads: http://tinyurl.com/aqe7g7r
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/charleydescote/
e-mail: c.descoteauxwrites@gmail.com
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Banner by A.J. Corza
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Say hello to Anne, everyone. She's dropping by with the cover reveal for her next novella and it's a lovely one at that.

***

Thank you for hosting my cover reveal for On Wings of Song 

TL Bland has done a great job in capturing the story and essence of On Wings of Song. It’s not only a great cover, but fits perfectly as part my growing collecting of covers I have framed on my wall.


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You can see more of TL Bland’s work at her website

Buy link: Find it here


Blurb:

Six years after meeting British soldier Aiden Foster during the Christmas Truce of 1914, Jochen Weber still finds himself thinking about Aiden, their shared conversation about literature, and Aiden’s beautiful singing voice. A visit to London gives Jochen the opportunity to search for Aiden, but he’s shocked at what he finds.


The uniform button Jochen gave him is the only thing Aiden has left of the past he’s lost. The war and its aftermath ripped everything away from him, including his family and his music. When Jochen reappears in his life, Aiden enjoys their growing friendship but knows he has nothing to offer. Not anymore.


Excerpt


“I’ve seen it,” Aiden said quietly. “I wish to God I hadn’t.” He looked directly at Jochen. Jochen met Aiden’s gaze. He’d seen an echo of Conrad’s fire in Aiden when he’d talked about his music earlier that afternoon.


“Don’t die on the wire, Aiden.”


“I’ll try not to.” Aiden’s words were an empty promise. They both knew it, but what else was he going to say?


The red-haired man Aiden had spoken to about arranging the burials walked over to him. He too held a shovel, and he wiped perspiration from his brow despite the cold. “There’s going to be a combined service for the dead,” he told them. “In about ten minutes in no man’s land in front of the French trenches.”


As they made their way over, men were already beginning to gather, soldiers from opposite sides sitting together, conversation dwindling to a respectful silence. A British chaplain stood in front of them, a Bible in his hand, a German beside him. Jochen recognized him, although he didn’t know his name. The young man was only a few years older than Jochen and was studying for the ministry—would he ever get the chance to complete those studies?


Jochen and Aiden found somewhere to sit a few rows back from the front and joined the company of men. The German spoke first. “Vater unser, der du bist im Himmel. Geheiligt werde dein Name.”


The British chaplain repeated the words in English. “Our Father who art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy Name.”


They then spoke a few words each, some from the Bible, the rest from their hearts. Their congregation was silent apart from a few quiet “amens.” Jochen saw a couple of men wipe tears away. He was close to it himself.


Finally the chaplain bowed his head in prayer. When he’d finished, he spoke quietly to the man who had come to stand next to him. It was Captain Williams. He nodded and looked over the crowd, his gaze fixing on Aiden.


Aiden must have guessed what Williams wanted. He inclined his head in response and then stood. Jochen glanced between the two men, confused. What did Williams expect Aiden to do?


“Aiden?” Jochen asked softly.


Aiden smiled at him and began to sing. “O Holy Night, the stars are brightly shining….” He lifted his head, his voice strong and clear, each note building on the last to create something truly beautiful, something angelic. Aiden’s eyes shone; his body swayed slightly in time with the music. He was the music.



His audience sat in awe. Jochen could feel the emotion rippling through the men around him, tangible, as though he could reach out and touch it. He felt something inside himself reach out, wanting to be a part of it, to be carried along the wave of pure music, to grab it and never let go.


Bio:

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.


Links:
Blog: http://anne-barwell.livejournal.com/
Website: http://annebarwell.wordpress.com/
Coffee Unicorns: http://coffeeunicorns.wordpress.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/anne.barwell.1
Dreamspinner Press Author Page: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_426
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
I'm happy to have my friend, Layla M. Wier back with her latest novel. It sounds like a lot of fun so I'll let her tell you all about it.

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Hi Jana! Thanks so much for having me back! This month I'm blog touring for my new novel Held For Ransom.

It's so fascinating to me how every story, whether long or short, involves a completely different creative process. Once I got the basic idea for Held For Ransom -- a mysterious drifter, who travels around the country doing anonymous good deeds, shows up in a small Illinois town -- the entire novel basically jumped out of my head. I wrote the rough draft in just a little over a month, which is by far the fastest I've ever written anything approaching a novel-length story!

It also required less revision than a lot of my projects do. For me, writing the second and third drafts can be an enormous process, involving color-coded sticky notes, index cards, and computer-printed pages with notes scribbled on them in different colored pens. Held For Ransomthough, was a relative breeze. I think the only major change that I made at the second-draft stage was to pull out a subplot that had ended up going nowhere; there were originally some scenes between one of the protagonists and his childhood bully that I decided to cut, since it started out as a major plot thread and then wandered off into nothing.

It's especially surprising to me that the story came together so well because at the beginning of the novel, I didn't know any more about our motorcycle-riding do-gooder mystery man, Ransom, than the other characters did. Usually that's a sure-fire recipe for having to go back and add a bunch of important plot stuff at the second-draft stage! (Not to mention a lot of caffeine-fueled sobbing as I try to shoehorn major plot elements into parts of the story that were never meant to contain them ...) But no, this time around, Ransom's backstory emerged slowly and organically for me as he revealed his secrets in bits and pieces to the other characters.

(And no, I'm not going to spoil the surprise! If you want to know who Ransom is and what makes a guy give up his previous life for the life of an itinerant motorcycle-riding, good-deed-doing bum, you'll have to read the novel and find out!)

But yeah, sometimes writing is full of teeth-gnashing and sobbing and frustration, but sometimes the words just flow. Maybe some novels, like some love stories, are simply meant to be.


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Excerpt:

“Who are you, anyway?” DJ asked, leaning forward, and Ransom went tense—an instinctive prey response to being cornered. “I don’t mean to be rude, I just don’t know what you’re doing in our little town. Are you on vacation?”

Ransom managed a laugh, and it even came out sounding easy, though DJ was frowning slightly—not an angry frown, but a puzzled one, the look people got as they tried to solve a puzzle. “I’m out here from California,” Ransom said. “I wanted to see the country, that’s all. My life isn’t very exciting. Tell me about you.”

The little furrow vanished. DJ smiled ruefully. “You think your life is boring. I still live on the same street where I grew up. You know where I went to college? Heatherfield. The farthest away from home I’ve ever been is Chicago, and that’s just to visit my sister.”


“Buy a motorcycle,” Ransom said. “Hit the road.”

“Is that what you did?”

He shrugged with studied casualness. “More or less.”

“It’s not that simple,” DJ said. “I wish it was.”

“Who are you staying for?”

That gave him pause. “Well, not really for anybody, I guess. It’s not like that. Mom… died, last winter. Dad left. But someone’s got to take care of the house while he’s traveling, and I have a job. I can’t just up and drop everything and take off.”

“That sounds lonely,” Ransom said.

“Everyone I know is right here in this town. Being lonely is the absolute last problem I have.” But he looked wistful. Then sudden humor broke through, like sunshine through clouds. His eyes, Ransom noticed, were a beautiful clear brown. “You know, Ransom, I’ve known you a few hours and I’m already telling you things I don’t talk to anybody about.”

“I’m a good listener.” And the strange thing was how much he’d found himself enjoying it. Just listening to DJ talk about the prosaic problems of his everyday, small-town life was like a balm to Ransom’s battered, leaf-in-the-wind soul.


Held For Ransom
by Layla M. Wier

Genre:
M/M Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: Novel/200 pages
Release Date: Nov. 14, 2014

Blurb:
Two weeks before Christmas, the small town of Osmar is gearing up for its annual winter carnival, but the death of the event’s long-time organizer might mean the end of the festivities. Everyone is turning to her son DJ to save the carnival, but DJ can barely save himself. He's spinning his wheels in Osmar—working part time at the gas station, living in his parents' house, and trying to figure out what to do with his life. DJ is caught in a large, loving web of well-meaning family and friends, but they can't fix his life for him.

Into this mess comes Ransom, a handsome mystery man on a motorcycle. Ransom is traveling around the country, making up for his past sins by doing “good deeds.” He and DJ have a one-night stand that neither can forget, but that's just the start, because Ransom has a plan to save the carnival, and DJ has a plan to save Ransom… and possibly himself.

Buy Links:
Dreamspinner Press
Amazon

About Layla:
Layla M. Wier is a writer and artist who grew up in rural Alaska and now lives on the highway north of Fairbanks, where winters dip to 50 below zero and summers yield 24 hours of daylight. She and her husband, between the two of them, possess a useful array of survival skills for the zombie apocalypse, including gardening, blacksmithing, collecting wild plant foods, and spinning wool into yarn (which led to her first Dreamspinner Press novella, "Homespun"). When not writing, she likes reading, hiking, and spending way too much time on the Internet.

Where to find Layla:
Blog: http://laylawier.wordpress.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Layla_in_Alaska
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/laylamwier
Tumblr: http://laylainalaska.tumblr.com


Stops on the Held for Ransom blog tour (Nov. 12-Dec. 1):
Wednesday, Nov. 12: Anne Barwell - http://annebarwell.wordpress.com/
Friday, Nov. 14: RELEASE DAY! Charley Descoteaux - http://cdescoteauxwrites.com/blog/
Monday, Nov. 17: Shae Connor - http://shaeconnorwrites.com/
... and **ALL-DAY RELEASE PARTY** on Facebook and Wordpress:
http://laylawier.wordpress.com - https://www.facebook.com/laylamwier
Wednesday, Nov. 19: Grace Duncan - http://www.grace-duncan.com
Friday, Nov. 21: Jana DeNardo - http://jana-denardo.livejournal.com
Monday, Nov. 24: Anna Butler - http://annabutlerfiction.com/blog/
Wednesday, Nov. 26: Aidee Ladnier - http://www.aideeladnier.com/
Friday, Nov. 28: Sherrie Henry - http://sherriehenry.blogspot.com/
Monday, Dec. 1: Because Two Men Are Better Than One - http://becausetwomenarebetterthanone.com/
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Today I bring you a newcomer to my blog. Meet Katherine Halle. She's here to tell you about her new novella which started life a lot like one of my novellas. It's always neat to have someone have such faith in your short story that they ask you to turn it into something larger. So welcome to Katherine.

Hi everyone!

*waves* Katherine here today to talk about my upcoming release, Fixing the Hole.

I originally wrote Fixing the Hole for the Snow on the Roof anthology. The editors turned it down for the anthology but enjoyed the story enough they suggested I expand it to at least 15K and resubmit it as a stand-alone novella. It didn't take much to fill out the story; these characters obviously had more to say. And I’m so glad they did.

I fell in love with these two men. Steve with his middle aged insecurities and Riley with his incessant chatter and his protective streak toward his father. I knew this would be a sweet, heart-warming story from the beginning and that it would lean more toward the romance and less toward the erotica side of things.

Even the side characters came alive for me, especially Dale, who we actually get to meet 'on the page' so to speak. But even Dale's wife Melly, and Riley's friends Jess and Ben and his father (who is a hoot) came alive for me. I would definitely love to explore these two again and bring in some of the side characters, I just hope they inspire me to tell another story about them.

Fixing The Hole was so much fun to write and I really hope there are more stories about Steve and Riley in the future.

I want to thank Jana for having me today and hope you all have a great week!

<333
Katherine

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Blurb:
Heavy rains and strong winds slammed an uprooted tree through Steve Crowell’s roof, leaving a gaping hole to match the one in his heart. After his ex left him for a younger man, Steve’s not sure he’s ready to handle another disaster. His best friend highly recommended the contractor, but the man’s already late, and when he shows up with his music thumping, Steve isn’t impressed—until Riley steps out of his pickup truck. Personable, gorgeous Riley talks a mile a minute, which Steve finds both ridiculously endearing and terrifying. Piecing together a heart isn’t as easy as fixing a roof, but Riley might just be the right man for the job.

Buy Links:
Dreamspinner: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5646
Amazon:
ARE:
Bio:
Katherine Halle is known as the “Queen of Happy Endings.” She firmly believes that no matter what the obstacles, what the struggles, or how much angst is involved in the journey, that the ending should always be a happy one.

Katherine’s love of the written word started at a very early age with repeated demands of “read to me” to any who would listen. It was only natural that writing would follow. As a child, she could often be found daydreaming, thinking up fanciful stories and writing them down. Now she does it on a laptop. Much faster.

Katherine’s favorite animal is her dog. She likes books, movies, and quirky television shows, such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Hart of Dixie. She loves cooking and watching cooking shows. She has lived in both Europe and the United States and loved both. When she’s not writing or plotting, Katherine enjoys spending her time listening to music, reading books written by other people, and being with her family.

You can find Katherine here:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/KatherineHalle
Blog: http://katherinehalle.wordpress.com/ or http://thraceadams.dreamwidth.org/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5761673.Katherine_Halle
Email: katherinehalle@yahoo.com
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Welcome Grace back to my blog everyone. She's bringing with her a cool contest and her latest book. It sounds really good. Check it out!



HealingFS

In a world that's gone to hell, will you let old fears keep you from the chance at more than just survival?

Blurb:

When Duncan stumbles into a pharmacy in search of something to fix his broken leg, he’s surprised to find someone else there. Like the rest of the post-pandemic world, it appeared empty. Instead, he discovers Mark, a former nurse who walked away from his profession after losing too many patients to the virus. Despite swearing he’d never practice medicine again, Mark patches Duncan up over Duncan's protests. He even finds an abandoned house in the tiny town, and they settle in until Duncan heals enough to look out for himself. Much to the chagrin of both, they find themselves caring for each other.

Duncan welcomes it, thrilled at finding someone he can trust. However, he’s well aware of the shadows in Mark’s eyes and understands Mark’s reticence as he learns the story. But as he’s starting to do things for himself again, Duncan realizes he doesn’t want Mark to leave. He’s not sure if can get Mark to let go of his fears so they can stay together and love. But Duncan’s damned sure going to try.

Buy link: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5534
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Healing-Pandemus-Chronicles-Book-2-ebook/dp/B00OWKJS84/ref=la_B00BCMBWY8_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1414433407&sr=1-6
AllRomance eBooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-healing-1656462-145.html

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Excerpt:

He should have known better. Under normal circumstances, it was a stupid move, but right here, right now, “stupid” didn’t begin to cover it.

Duncan glared at his leg for another moment, then leaned his head back against the wall. He needed to keep moving. It hurt like hell, but he had to keep going. It wasn’t going to get better on its own. The gash needed to be cleaned and bandaged, and even if the break wasn’t bad, it should at least be braced. And it wasn’t like he could call an ambulance. Or even go into an emergency room.

Well, he supposed he could go into an emergency room, if he was in the city. But like a lot of other people, he avoided the cities whenever possible. And when it wasn’t, he stayed as far on the edge as he could. But even there, it was a dangerous risk. As corrupt as the cities were now, the price of anything was higher than most could pay. He’d heard rumors that, in some of the worst cities, people simply got shot if they couldn’t pay what the thugs in power wanted. It was all rumor, but rumor he wasn’t about to ignore.

So he did his damnedest to stay away.

He’d been stupid to jump off the ledge. Even at only a couple of feet higher than he was tall, the risk hadn’t been worth it. He’d have thought, after nearly three years, he’d learned how to be more careful and not take those kinds of risks. It wasn’t the first time he’d fallen and hurt himself—though, thankfully, the last one hadn’t involved a broken bone. Maybe it should have; he might have learned his lesson then.

“Really fucking stupid, Dun.”

Duncan steeled himself and pulled to his feet, grimacing when the sharp pain shot up his ankle and through his leg. “Fuck,” he muttered, breathing hard through his nose. When he finally focused past the pain, he looked up and noted the position of the sun, the only real indication he had for the time, and figured he had another good hour or two of light. If he was right about where he was, he wouldn’t need all of it. He tucked the stick he’d found under his arm, grimaced when it dug into the soft flesh, but then leaned on it and hobbled along again.



 

Grace’s Bio:

Grace Duncan grew up with a wild imagination. She told stories from an early age - many of which got her into trouble. Eventually, she learned to channel that imagination into less troublesome areas, including fanfiction, which is what has led her to writing male/male erotica.

A gypsy in her own right, Grace has lived all over the United States. She has currently set up camp in East Texas with her husband and children - both the human and furry kind.

As one of those rare creatures who loves research, Grace can get lost for hours on the internet, reading up on any number of strange and different topics. She can also be found writing fanfiction, reading fantasy, crime, suspense, romance and other erotica or even dabbling in art.

Grace’s website: http://www.grace-duncan.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GraceRDuncan2
Twitter: @GraceRDuncan

Giveaway!

Enter to win an Amazon.com $25 gift card!

Rafflecopter Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Don’t forget to follow the tour for more chances to win! Every comment on the tour is another entry into the Rafflecopter grand prize giveaway!

Thanks for stopping by!

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jana_denardo: (kept tears)
I have Suki Fleet here with us today to answer a few questions and share her new YA novella with us. It sounds really interesting (and I notice we share a writing routine.). So meet, Suki.



Interview questions
Thanks for having my on your blog, Jana! XD
1 - "Why this story idea?"

I used to post my stories online, and after I finished At the End of Everything (the second part of my story This is Not a Love Story) a lot of readers were desperate to read more about Crash, who was only a secondary character. I liked Crash quite a bit too, so Wild Summer was born  It took me a while to figure out the story direction though (a looong time).



2- "Is there a story you've been wanting to write for a while, but haven't started it yet? What is it?"

Yes. I am at the thinking stage of writing Julian’s POV (one of the main characters from This is Not a Love Story). Sometimes the thinking stage takes a while 



3- "Who is your favorite author/why?"

In the M/M genre probably Harper Fox. Her writing is beautiful. In any genre probably Cormac McCarthy for much the same reason, breathtaking prose.


4- What do you do when you hit a writer's block?

Do something else. Stories, lines, characters often come to me when I’m running or walking.


5- Do you have a particular routine when writing?

Cup of tea-bit of procrastination (internet browsing)-write.


6- Who is the favorite character you’ve ever created?

Difficult one. I will have loved them all as I was writing them. Remee from This is Not a Love Story, maybe. I also love Crash and Summer from Wild Summer, and Christopher from a story I have coming out next year called Innocence.


7. What else would you like us to know about you?

I wish I could draw.


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Blurb

At fifteen, Christopher falls in love with a boy whose life he saves. But things go wrong and four years later, he wishes he'd acted differently. His conscience begins to haunt him and he knows he must find Summer again.


At seventeen, Summer pushes away the boy who saved him. Four years later, he is stuck in an abusive, damaging relationship. When he sees Christopher again, it's a sign he can't go on living like he is, but he can't begin to see a way out.

For either boy to stand a chance at happiness, they must find each other and obliterate the wrongs of their shared past.


Buy Links

Dreamspinner Press

Amazon


Author bio
Suki Fleet currently lives in the heart of England. Her childhood was quite unconventional and she spent some time living on a boat and travelling at sea with her family. Since she was very small she has always dreamed of writing for a living, but though she has written original fiction online for years and encouraged many new writers to keep going and follow their author dreams, it is only recently she got the courage to make her own dream a reality and actually send something off to a publisher.

By day she runs her own business selling fabric (her second love) and juggling family commitments, by night she weaves the stories that the characters in her head dictate. These stories often start with pain or longing but always end with love.

Links
https://www.facebook.com/suki.fleet.3
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7919609.Suki_Fleet
http://sukifleet.tumblr.com/
http://sukifleet.wordpress.com/
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
I'm very happy to have Kim Fielding on my blog today. She's having a very busy fall publishing wise and is here to tell us all about it. You've seen her here before (and probably my reviews of her wonderful books), and one of them has royalties going to a charity that means a lot to both of us, Doctors without Borders. I had wanted to join them once I had enough experience to feel comfortable in that sort of situation (or if not them, other medical relief groups) but that never came to be so I'm thrilled to see Kim donating the royalties to this great cause. Let's welcome Kim.


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Hi! I’m Kim Fielding. I have FIVE (!) new releases out right now. Today I’d like to talk about one of them, The Festivus Miracle . Here’s the blurb:

It’s finals week during Tony McNeil’s second year in law school, and he’s struggling to keep up. Frankly, he’d rather be cooking. Then he meets first-year student Eddie Cohen-Fernandez, who’s heartsick over missing his family’s annual Festivus celebration. Tony can use his culinary skills to lift Eddie’s spirits, but finding long-term happiness? That just might require a Festivus miracle.

It’s a sweet and romantic holiday story, which is always a good thing, I think. But here’s the most important thing: I’m donating all my royalties from this book to Doctors Without Borders . In fact, I donate the royalties from all my self-published books (Stasis, Flux, Equipoise, and Joys R Us) to this organization. Last year I gave them $3000. Maybe not a fortune, but hardly pocket change either. I’d love to be able to top that amount this year.

Doctors Without Borders is an amazing group. They provide critical medical care to people in 70 countries around the world. They often work in war zones, which means their volunteers put their own lives at risk. And 87 cents of every donated dollar goes directly to their programs—meaning donated money is going where it will do good, and not to bloated administrative or fund-raising costs.

I have no medical training. Even if I did, I don’t know if I’d be brave enough to be a DWB volunteer. But at least through my book sales I can help fund their efforts. And so can you!

I really hope you’ll buy The Festivus Miracle. You’ll get a nice little treat for yourself, and your money will be helping others in need. I also hope you spread the word. You can preorder the book; it releases November 1.

And aside from Festivus, I have four additional new releases. I’m doing a Fieldingpalooza tour, complete with prizes. You can find all the details on my website. Please come join me!

***


Kim’s new releases:

Bone Dry—book 3 in the Bones series— available now!

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Brute—French translation! - available now

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Standby—in the Stranded anthology— available now

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The Dance—in the Bones anthology (Gothika vol. 2) —releases October 27 available now for preorder!


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The Festivus Miracle—releases November 1—all proceeds go to Doctors Without Borders— available now for preorder!



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***

Contests!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


a Rafflecopter giveaway


a Rafflecopter giveaway


***

For more details on Kim’s books, as well as some free stories, visit her at http://kfieldingwrites.com/. You can also follow her in Twitter @KFieldingWrites and Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/KFieldingWrites.
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
First off, I need to apologize to Brynn for getting this up so late. My internet at home has been out off and on. It went down just after my post last night. I can't post from my lab at work and it's been down again here until now. Here's hoping I can get this up for her because her new book sounds really good. Not only that she's talking about a very important subject and there's a giveaway and I'm sort of gumming up the works here with my shoddy rural internet that's the equivalent of two tin cans and a string.

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Blog Tour for Through the Years

Thanks Jana, for hosting me today.

I’ve noticed that there is a common theme in most of my stories…homophobia. There’s a good reason for that. I live in the Bible Belt and that affliction is quite common here.

I work with several people who are vocal homophobes. If anyone follows my blog, I have a semi-regular feature there called “Tales from the Bible Belt” that focuses on these people…in particular one man whom I just refer to as Coworker. Or, Narcissistic Bible Thumping Coworker…depending on how exasperating he had been that day.

I work in a private school for children with emotional disabilities, learning disabilities, or Autism…or sometimes combinations of the above. This man has actually sat in official meeting and told same gender parents that their child is ‘screwed up’ because their relationship is a sin and God is punishing them. He refuses to call these families, even though we are both supposed to contact every family on a regular basis, in the hopes of desensitizing the families to calls from the school. (The theory is that if we call for good stuff too, they’ll be less likely to avoid our calls for the not so great stuff). He constantly berates the kids either directly or in general in a ‘social skills’ lesson (that usually more closely resembles bible study, even though we are not a church-run school). What’s worse is that my almost equally homophobic principal seems to turn a blind eye to this behavior, even though it is frequently reported.

And that’s not the only examples of homophobia around here. My daughter works with a gay man who is forever verbally bashed by his coworkers both to his face and behind his back. My brother has taken all kinds of abuse throughout his life, including physical bashing. My brother in law and his partner have replaced windows in their house and repainted their cars more times than I can count.

In short, there is a lot of homophobia around here, and unfortunately, most of it is attached to religion in some way if not actual churches (though there are plenty of churches here that at the very least turn a blind eye to hatred toward gays if not actively espouse it).

There are also plenty of churches here who try to combat those same teachings, but unfortunately, the first type of church is often much more vocal.

In my stories, I try to realistically portray the first type of church, but also am careful to mention that the second type of church exists too.

In Through the Years, Edward grows up in the former. After a lifetime of having it all but literally beaten into him that homosexuality is wrong, he has a horrible time accepting that trait in himself. That attitude drives much of the conflict throughout the story (though there are plenty of other conflicts as well).

I also mention several people even within that same church who don’t believe the rhetoric.

Later in the story, I focus on a church that is much more tolerant and loving. One of the second generation characters goes to this type of church, having ‘shopped around’ for a church that would accept her Uncles Gene and Edward. This church is much more Christian, in my opinion.

What do you think readers? Do you mind reading stories that realistically portray homophobic churches, as long as the author acknowledges (or even focuses) on churches that are not of that ilk?

Comment below to be entered into the raffle.

Here’s how the raffle works:

I’ve listed the tour stops below and have given either the link to the blog in general or to my post specifically. Feel free to stop by as many as you want. For each stop that you comment on, you will receive one entry to the giveaway. I’ll check all the stops numerous times throughout the tour and will draw five winners on Thanksgiving Day, so even if you come in late to the tour, you can go back through the list and comment on past stops.

I’m giving away five prizes. Prize 1) a signed paperback copy of Through the Years; Prizes 2 and 3) electronic copies of Through the Years, Prize 4) your choice of either a signed paperback copy or an audiobook of Living Again (the audiobook won’t be available until December), and Prize 5) an electronic copy of Haunted.

Blog Tour Stops for Through the Years
Blog Stop Date Blog Owner Blog Address
1 October 6 Anne Barwell http://annebarwell.wordpress.com

2 October 7 Grace Duncan http://www.grace-duncan.com/

3 October 8 Jessica Skye Davies http://jessicaskyedavies.blogspot.com

4 October 9 Shira Anthony http://www.shiraanthony.com/?p=4032

5 October 10 Emma Tett http://emmy-j.blogspot.co.uk

6 October 11 Kim Fielding http://www.kfieldingwrites.com/please-welcome-brynn-stein/

7 October 12 Bike Books Reviews bikebookreviews.blogspot.com

8 October 13 Tempest O’Riley http://tempesteoriley.com

9 October 14 Sean Michael http://seanmichaelwrites.blogspot.ca/

10 October 15 Allison Cassatta http://allisoncassatta.blogspot.com/2014/10/author-spotlight-brynn-stein.html

11 October 16 Jana Denardo http://jana-denardo.livejournal.com/

12 October 17 Louise Lyons http://louiselyonsauthor.wordpress.com

13 October 18 PD Singer http://pdsinger.com

14 October 20 Shae Connor http://shaeconnorwrites.com

15 October 21 Suki Fleet http://sukifleet.wordpress.com

16 October 27 Charlie Cochet http://purpleroseteahouse.charliecochet.com

17 October 28 Elizabeth Noble http://www.elizabeth-noble.com/my-blog

18 October 29 Tara Lain http://taralain.com

19 October 31 Sophie Bonaste http://sophiebonaste.blogspot.com

20 November 4 Kit Moss http://kitmossreviews.blogspot.com

21 November 10 Lane Hayes lanehayes.wordpress.com

22 November 13 Mike Rupured http://rupured.com



Thanks again Jana, for letting me stop by today.



http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5539

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Blurb for Through the Years
Edward and Gene were instantly drawn to each other when they met at college in Maryland. Fast friends, they developed a "closer than brothers" relationship. But then Edward began to feel more for Gene. In 1967, those kind of feelings would not be tolerated. Not even by Edward himself.


Gene always thought he was asexual. He had never been attracted to anyone... until he met Edward. He dreamed of Edward as more than a friend throughout college, but he knew Edward would not welcome that kind of attention. So Gene wasn't surprised when Edward reacted badly to a drunken kiss just before Edward's graduation. He was surprised when Edward moved to Florida and had little to do with him for years afterward.

When fate finally brings them back together, Edward is married and has a little girl. Gene gladly accepts the role of "Uncle Gene," happy to have Edward in his life in any capacity. Together, they face all the trials and tribulations life throws at them, including the death of Edward's wife, and as each grows and matures, their life views change. The relationship they've secretly wanted all along is closer than ever, and if Edward can break free from his homophobic upbringing and admit his feelings for Gene, there might still be a chance for them to share their lives in the way they both desire.

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A Bittersweet Dreams title: It's an unfortunate truth: love doesn't always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.



Brynn Stein has always loved to write. Fan fiction, original fiction, whatever. While Brynn wrote in numerous genres – everything from mystery, to contemporary, to supernatural – she had always tended toward strong male characters. And then she discovered ‘slash’, male/male romance, and all those strong male characters were finally allowed to express their love for one another. It seems that there are always at least two characters clamoring to tell Brynn their story.

Brynn lives in Virginia with one of her two two-legged children, and two four-legged ones. Her supportive family encourages her writing and provides a sounding board for fledgling stories. When she isn’t writing, Brynn teaches children with special needs. In free time, when such a thing exists, she reads anything she can get her hands on, and haunts bookstores. She draws and paints, and enjoys the outdoors—especially if she can get to the beach—and is always thinking about her next story.
Please feel free to contact Brynn at any of the following:
https://twitter.com/BrynnStein
http://brynnstein2.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/

or
brynnstein2@gmail.com

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jana_denardo: (kept tears)
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A Closed Door, by Andrew Q. Gordon
Book Blurb:

Outted at thirteen, Orin Merritt left home after high school hoping to escape the hell his life had become. Ten years later when a tornado destroys his childhood home and kills his parents, Orin finds himself in an entirely new nightmare. One he can't run away from.

Blaming himself for failing the two people who always loved and supported him, he returns home and confronts his past in the person of his one-time best friend, Thomas Kennett. Thomas not only rejected him when Orin came out, he led the group that tormented Orin into leaving.

As he struggles to deal with his grief, Orin also labors to fulfill the pledge he made to his parents before their death. In the process, Orin learns that sometimes when you go away to find yourself, you leave the answers you're looking for behind.

Cover Artist: Lily Velden and Jay Aheer
Publisher: Wayward Ink Publishing.

Buy Links: Wayward Ink
Amazon


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Book Excerpt:
"Orin, I won't." Thomas stood a bit straighter and his eyes lost the sad, pleading shine. "I won't hurt you again."

"You can't promise that. Things happen." Orin watched as his words dragged Thomas back from the brink of hope.

"If you truly believe that, then there's nothing I can do. You have to believe there's a chance or else I can't prove it."

"That's not what I'm telling you." He locked his gaze on Thomas's. "If I say yes, I'll have to take down the walls I surrounded my heart with to keep it safe. Once it's gone, I won't be able bring it back if I get hurt. Not now.

"So what I'm saying is, think about what you’re asking me to risk. If you really love me, ask yourself if are you willing to risk what will happen to me if you can't keep your promise."

He knew how unfair he'd been, but self-preservation had been a skill he'd honed over the past fifteen years. He needed Thomas to know just how serious the repercussion could be for his actions.

"Orin, I . . . I . . . how . . .?" Their faces were inches apart, and Thomas moved in for another kiss.

This felt different than the first—less urgent, but no less intense. Orin trembled at the leap he was about to take. When they stepped back, Thomas rubbed his thumb across Orin's cheek.

"I do love you, Orin. More than I can say. So much, that I'm not willing to risk what will happen if I fail you again. I don't have that right."

Thomas's lips quivered and the tears welled at the bottom of his eyes. He kissed Orin's forehead gently.

"Good-bye, Orin. Please be happy." Without looking back, Thomas walked to the front door, opened it, and walked away.

Author Bio:
Andrew Q. Gordon
wrote his first story back when yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting with technology, he now takes his MacBook somewhere quiet when he wants to write.
He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his partner of eighteen years, their young daughter and dog. In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. 'insiders', Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball and seeing how much coffee he can drink in a day.
Author Contacts:
Website: www.andrewqgordon.com,
Facebook: www.facebook.com/andrewqugordon,
Twitter: @andrewqgordon,
Email: andrewqgordon@gmail.com
Other Books:
The Last Grand Master: (Champion of the Gods – Book 1);
Purpose:
(Un)Masked:
Ashes of Life:
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
It's been a little while since I last dropped by with a guest blogger so give Kristen Slater and her story Working It Out a warm welcome!

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Hello everyone, and thank you to Jana for giving me space on her blog. I’m Kristen Slater and I’m here celebrating the release of my very first published story, Working It Out. This post is part of a blog tour during which I’m running a giveaway for a $10 gift certificate for Dreamspinner Press, my publisher. To enter the giveaway, you can comment on any of the posts in the tour here and then go to Rafflecopter here.


I know one of the things writers get asked is where they get their ideas. The short answer is that we don't really know. But once the ideas start flowing, you can sometimes see things that have influenced them.

In the story I give Joe a bullying boss, called Penny. She has some of the classic signs of a workplace bully. She delegates inappropriately, giving a very junior member of staff a job that she, or at least someone more senior, should be doing. It's hinted that she uses her power to agree (or refuse) leave requests as a way of controlling staff. And she allows it to appear that the staff under her are at fault when things go wrong, rather than it being her fault for not managing things properly. The one we see in the story, however, is her making everyone stay late at work.

So what gave me the idea? Where did Penny come from? Well, she's based partly on a boss I had.

My first 16 years of working life were not good. I started as an office junior in a department that had four senior managers and four people working for them. Three of the subordinates worked for one manager and the other was shared between the other three. All four of the managers were bullies of one type and another, and the poor junior who worked for three of them never lasted long. Although that department structure changed over time and three of those managers left, the worst of them remained.

For 10 years I was sequestered in a small office, just her and me. All the managers above her knew what she was like, but none wanted to tackle the problem. She did the things I've mentioned above. She also did more. Have you ever spent weeks where the one person with whom you spend most of your waking hours is not talking to you? I don't mean she was just quiet. I mean deliberately not talking to you. Making it obvious that's what they're doing. Being extra chatty and bright with everyone else that comes in, to underscore how much they're not talking to you. It's soul destroying. There was more as well, and it wrecked my confidence and my mental health.

I started that job just as an economic recession hit, making it almost impossible to get another job. So I was stuck there until, after 16 years, I woke up one morning and just couldn't go in any more.

Unknown to me, the job market had changed for the better in that time, and I was soon signed up with an agency that provided temporary workers to offices. All my jobs since then have been temporary to some degree or another, but the thing they've had in common is that they've been in places that were a million miles away from that first experience.

I've now learned the difference between bullying and good natured banter. My current colleagues reckon I could have a second career on one of those naughty phone lines, based on my voicemail greeting. They tease me unmercifully about my "sexy" voice. At my previous place of work they agreed I was "weird". Since another word for that is unique, I can happily live with that. In both instances, it's friendly teasing and they'd be horrified if I was genuinely distressed by it.

But when I needed a reason for Joe to be late home from work, and seriously annoyed about it, Penny the bullying boss wasn't hard to come up with.

It's just a shame that I've named a character based on the worst boss I ever had after one of the best ones.

Blurb
Celebrating six months with his boyfriend has Cas in a bit of a panic. Joe's been saying "I love you" for a while, but Cas just can't get the words past his lips. A week before Christmas, he finally says them when a nearly fatal accident almost takes Joe, and Cas faces the possibility of losing the best man he's ever known. But whispered declarations are one thing. Through a long, tough recovery both men must work out that love is more than words.

You can find the book at Dreamspinner Press

And you can find me on my blog and on twitter (although not as often as I ought to be).
blog
twitter


About Kristen
Kristen's always spent more time living in the world inside her head than in the one outside it. Since she discovered writing, that world's escaped from its confines and got mixed up with her real life. She's not entirely unhappy about that. Particularly since she gets to admit that she hears voices and listens to them without having to worry about the men in white coats coming to take her away.

Whilst never having any inclination to romantic relationships for herself, she nevertheless gets all misty whenever she sees a wedding or someone announces an intention to commit their lives to each other. It was kind of inevitable that everything she writes turns into romance, no matter what it started out as.

A proud member of the Cloud Appreciation Society Kristen thinks there's nothing wrong with living with your head in the clouds.
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
I had to run to the library to post this because my internet is out (for who knows how long. It's a tiny inefficient company). But I did want to get this out there.

Bound by Desire
by Tempeste O’Riley
Desires Entwined series #1.75
M/M Erotic Contemporary BDSM Romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 30th 2014 (ebook)
Length: Short




Description: Part of the Desires Entwined series – Ideally read between Designs of Desire and Desires’ Guardian.

Despite his past abuse, James has come to terms with his relationship with his Dom and lover Seth. Seth treats James with all the trust and love his sub desires. There is only one thing left to do to make it all complete: Seth needs to put a collar on James.



Tempeste O’Riley is an out and proud omnisexual / bi-woman whose best friend growing up had the courage to do what she couldn’t–defy the hate and come out. He has been her hero ever since.
Tempe is a hopeless romantic that loves strong relationships and happily-ever-afters. Though new to writing M/M, she has done many things in her life, though writing has always drawn her back–no matter what else life has thrown her way. She counts her friends, family, and Muse as her greatest blessings in life. She lives in Wisconsin with her children, reading, writing, and enjoying life.
Tempe is also a proud PAN member of Romance Writers of America®, Rainbow Romance Writers, and WisRWA. Learn more about Tempeste and her writing at http://tempesteoriley.com.

Website ♥ Goodreads ♥ Twitter ♥ Facebook ♥ Google + ♥ DSP ♥ Blog


You can find the story here. Links:
DSP – here
Are – here
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Welcome a friend of mine, Mark Hunter with his new book No-Campfire Girls, which sounds like a lot of fun and it helps support a good cause.

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So giving the reins over to Mark.

Now that I have another book coming out, The No-Campfire Girls, people want to know what the writing life is really like. This is how it is:

Thanks to continually typing when I should rest it, my entire right arm is killing me because of unhealed tendonitis.

I’m in a state of perpetual exhaustion from trying to jumpstart a fiction writing career while also working a full time and part time job.

I’m twenty pounds overweight from writing instead of exercising.

With more than half a dozen manuscripts making the rounds of publishers and agents, I’m in a state of perpetual stress akin to sitting on death row, waiting for the governor to call.

I love it.

Weaving stories is my life; I wouldn’t give it up for anything. In jags of depression I’ve given up trying to get published for months at a time, but I’ve never stopped writing. Some people claim they love their jobs so much they’d do them for free, but writers actually live that cliché. If J.K. Rowling showed up with an industrial strength time-turner right now (You know she has one) and broke it to me that I’ll never make another dime writing fiction, I’d give stories away for free.

(Naturally, I hope it doesn’t come to that. Uh-oh—who’s that at the door?)

There are a lot of great things about writing. It’s therapeutic, for one thing. Get into it with a coworker? In your next book, kill them off. Horribly.

You can write anywhere, especially in these days of electronic devices of all sizes. My wife put an app on my iPhone that allows me to write. On my phone. When I was younger, the only thing you could do with your phone besides making calls was smash it over the head of an intruder. I used to always have with me either a book or my laptop, but now I can have both in my hip pocket. Of course, I have to have my other pocket free for chocolate—let’s not get crazy.

If you don’t have money for a smart phone or an iPad, you can pick up a notebook for a buck, and you can pick up a pen anywhere that likes to advertise. Stop in the bank, ask them about their rates, walk away with a pen. I have a collection. In a good year you can pick up notepaper from people running for office, if you can call that a good year.

You might say the best thing about writing is the ability to exercise your imagination, but something else is just as good: Meeting other writers.

When I was a kid, back in the olden days when we hacked out fiction on a slab of stone with a piece of charred stick, it wasn’t all that easy to meet other writers. I knew they were out there, because I read their books. As near as I could figure, they all lived in New York, with a few in Chicago and the really odd ones on the West Coast. There were none in Indiana.
Then I met the internet, shook its mousy hand, and said: “When we’re done wasting time, can you take me to other writers?”

And it did.

Turns out the internet is more than cute kittens and ugly sex.

Once you know where to look, you can’t swing a cute kitten having ugly sex without finding writers, although I should point out they don’t like being hit by swinging kittens—even cute ones. I started out on LiveJournal, which is all about journaling, which is writing, but writers are on every social networking site. If there’s an “I hate writing” website somewhere, there’s a guy on it, writing … about hating writing, I assume.

And the best part is, they’re great people. They don’t compete with their competitors: They support them. Imagine that! Do the corner pizza parlors give each other advice and encouragement? Do politicians exchange debating tips?

So when I mentioned my new book, The No-Campfire Girls, what did they do? Spread nasty rumors? Leave bad reviews? Burn the first printing? No. One of the groups I’m involved with online, The Ink-slingers League, came up with the idea of a blog tour to support my release. And here we are, back on Live Journal … blog touring, thanks to the support and encouragement of fellow writers.

And if that’s not a good reason to stay sore, tired, stressed and unhealthy, I don’t know what is.


Blurb: Fifteen year old Beth Hamlin is horrified to discover her beloved summer camp must go without campfires this year, due to the fire hazard from a drought. At first she and her friends try to perk up the other campers, but Beth isn't one to just sit (or swim, or boat, or horseback) around, when there's a challenge to be met.

Beth discovers her new cabinmate, Cassidy, knows a local Cherokee who claims the ability to do a rain dance. Now all they have to do is trick the Camp Director into letting Running Creek do the dance there, avoid the local bully and a flying arrow or two … and keep from getting caught plotting with the local fire captain on a forbidden cell phone. With luck southern Indiana will get a nice, soaking rain, and when it's over Camp Inipi can have proper campfires again.

But when things go horribly wrong, the whole area is endangered by a double disaster. Now Beth, Cassidy, and the rest of their unit may be the only people who can save not only their camp, but everyone in it.

When Beth's big brother told her being a teenager could be rough … he probably didn't have this in mind.

*A portion of the proceeds of this book will benefit Friends of Latonka, an organization made to save a summer camp in Wappapello, Missouri, until the fundraising deadline.*

Buy it here
jana_denardo: (kept tears)
Today, I have something a little different on my blog. I’d like you to meet Lillian, a young author, not quite a teenager yet, bringing with her a free serial read dedicated to her uncle. Her bio reminds me of me at that age but I doubt I would have been as brave as she is, sharing a story online. She is not just sharing with us her story but her concern for others which I’ll let her tell you about in her own words. So please stop by and leave a message for Lillian and a support a young author. Thanks!

Lillian McKinnon is a young adult writing young adult fiction. In addition to her ongoing fantasy serial, Kismet, she has also recently completed herfirst full length novel and is in the midst of writing another. She took the time to stop by and answer a few questions.

1.Okay, so, young adult writing young adult. Exactly how old are you?

I'll be 13 in August.

2.What made you decide to write?

I'm home educated, or what in the US is called home schooling. This year Creative Writing was part of English Composition, and I thought, forget writing aload of short stories, I'll write a book and be done with it. It was much more appealing, especially as I got free reign to write whatever I wanted to. Then, as I writing that book, I discovered Cody Kennedy's serial Fairy on his blog. He inspired me to try my hand at that too, and so Kismet was born.


3.Why the LGBT genre?

Why not? When I first decided to write my novel, I got a lot of advice from professional authors we know, who all said to me, “Write what you know personally, what you don't know research, research research, and just let the characters tellyou their story.” So I did. Let me tell you, once you think of a story theme, the characters come knocking on the door to your brain, and they don't shut up until you've written it all down. My characters happen to be gay with straight friends. I am kind of sad people think that matters.

4.What are some of your favorite books?

I really enjoyed reading The His Dark Materials trilogy, Harry Potter, The Time Quartet, the Little House on the Prairie books, Geoff Laughton's By the Creek, Omorphi by Cody kennedy, Jamie Mayfield's books Waiting for Forever, all of
Mia Kerick's young adult stuff, man, it's too hard to pick out just a couple of favourites. I either really like a book or hate it. I also read a lot of manga. I'm a huge manga fan and collect Vampire Knight, Sailor Moon, Sailor V, Itazura na Kiss, Saturn Apartments, Twin Spica, Bleach, Yotsuba&!, Fruits Basket, Moon and Blood, Wedding
Peach, and Chi's Sweet Home.
*NOTE from Jana* - Lillian, if you haven't try out Fullmetal Alchemist. You might like it.

5.When not writing, what are some of your hobbies?

I love to draw and if I come across a pencil and any sort of paper, I start sketching. I also draw on my Macbook using the trackpad and mouse. I'm into photography too, and love playing on Photoshop with the pictures I take. I also like going for long bike rides, hiking, swimming, kayaking, karate, and abseiling though I learned the hard way to NOT look down. I plan on doing the Duke of Ed and plan on adding surfing and scuba diving to that list as part of completing the requirements for the award.

And Lillian also answered some of your questions as well.

Interview questions
1 - "Why this story idea?"
My Uncle Cody is writing a serial about fairies which I’ve been following (can
read here), my brother and I were reading the greek myths to tie in with the Percy
Jackson books and films as part of our education, and I’m a fan of Japanese
folklore and manga. One day I suddenly thought, what if all the old stories were true and fairies, goblins, nine tailed foxes, and dryads and stuff were all
somehow connected? What would happen if they lived in the real world? And then the characters started telling me their story.

2- "Is there a story you've been wanting to write for awhile, but haven't started it yet? What is it?"

There *might* be one featuring a dragon...

3- "Who is your favorite author/why?"
That’s a hard question. I love so many authors in so many genres. I have “go to”
authors that when they release a book, I have to have it, but I might not feel like reading it right away. I pick up a particular book in a particular genre because right that moment, I want to read THAT one, and in THAT moment, I hope to fall in love with the author and that book completely and utterly.

4- What do you do when you hit a writer's block?
I put on some music and taken out my sketch pad and draw. If I’m too restless to
do that, I might do a karate work out or go for a long bike ride using a nearby
park’s bike trail.

5- Do you have a particular routine when writing?
I fill my travel mug with my coffee choice of the day, grab some snacks and a
napkin, choose my playlist, put on my headphones, and let
the characters just go.

6- Who is the favorite character you’ve ever created?
Cody. I really like him because he cares about his family and friends and is willing to do whatever he can for those he cares about.

7. What else would you like us to know about you?
I want to know why Fox cancelled Firefly. We got Amazon Prime and I discovered it on there, and there is only one season. That BITES! WHY, FOX, WHY?!



Kismet is a free read, so rather than have the usual buy links up, below you'll find two fund raiser links. One is for a homeless youth charity called Lost-N-Found Youth. Not every kid is lucky enough to have the support of a loving family, and LGBT youth are much more likely to face abuse and being kicked out on the streets. Lost-N- Found not only help youth out by providing shelter for as many as they can, but help youth get back into education and into society as contributing members. They also provide legal assistance where necessary, food, clothes, and so much more.

The other link is for a couple who are writers in the LGBT romance genre. Following emergency brain surgery, TJ and Eric have been traveling a long, hard and expensive road. Things are beginning to look up, with Eric soon to come home to TJ and their new home. They could still use the help and continued support of caring people though. I ask that those of you following the blog tour please consider contributing an amount to at least one of these causes, no matter how small or insignificant you feel that donation would be. Pennies all add up into dollars, after all.
Thank you,
Lillian McKinnon

Lost-n-found youth

TJ & Eric fundraiser here

Find Kismet here

Bio - Lillian McKinnon is the pen name for a rather sassy not quite 13 year old home educated girl who lives and plays in the Northwest region of England. She doesn't like being told she can't do things because she's a kid, and woe betide you if it's because she's a girl. She's active in Scouts and is avid about karate. She also enjoys long bike rides, photography, kayaking, abseiling, canoeing, swimming, and is somewhat of an artist. She probably reads far too much, with bookcases full of novels and manga, a Kindle with an ever growing library, and online serials she avidly follows. She also has a fondness for vintage American sitcoms and modern sci fi and fantasy TV shows. When not reading, doing her educational assignments, writing, or indulging in her other hobbies, she spend time gaming with her younger brother, as long as he's not annoyed her too much that day. Skill she would most like to learn next: surfing.

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