A New WIPpet! #WIPpetWednesday and #ROW80 update

Well…I finished my novel! Yay! So that means I’m editing it, so still technically a WIP, but I’m going to start posting from Emma again. I finally have a title for it, not sure if I ever shared that. This novel has about 34,000 words written and I think it’ll end up being around 90,000 for the whole novel. It’s a third done and my goal is to finish it BEFORE NaNoWriMo. I want to write Grace through Redemption for NaNo. But I’m getting married in a few weeks, so I’m not quite sure how that’s going to work out.

Anyway, I’m going to do ROW80 update first.

1. Lovely, Dark, and Deep short story needs to be written by Aug 31st. 2k words a week.

2. Post-Apocalyptic/Zombie short story needs to be written by Sept 27th. 2k words a week.

3. Editing Fallen from Grace. 3 chapters a week.

I haven’t done anything except the third goal. I did finish my three chapters this week. I’m thinking I need to up it so I can finish editing before I get married. I think I’ll keep this as the goal and try to do extra! =P

 

For WIPpet.

I do not in anyway remember what I posted from this previously. So here’s a snippet from chapter 13, which is the last completely written chapter. 6 short paragraphs after some shit went down =P Molly and Emma are talking it out. (Yes, I’m aware Emma is called Caroline. I think that’ll be confusing until people read the whole novel. She’s lying about her identity, so when from Molly’s POV, Emma is referred to as Caroline.) My math is easy this week 20 (for the day) – (14 for the year) = 6.

The title of the series is Quarter Life, and the title of this book is Unbound. =D

Molly waited patiently until Caroline was calmed down enough to start talking again. Amachon was still nowhere to be seen, and she knew he would not return until she was done or until Joel woke up. Sliding a stool over so that she could sit, Molly waited a few more seconds before asking Caroline to continue.

“After that?” Caroline said. “I don’t really remember exactly. Chloroform—I remember the smell. Then I kind of woke up a little bit and realized we’d been drugged. Everything was so slow. And dark.”

“What happened?”

“Kirill.”

Molly remained silent as did Caroline. There was little need for an explanation as to why. Molly had essentially stolen for Kirill in his mind and thus he would steal from her. That was explanation enough for him. If she hadn’t done it, hadn’t allowed Jelena and her sons into her home and offered to hide them, Caroline would not have been put in danger.

It was one thing for Joel to be put in danger; he was her employee and knew the circumstances surrounding her work. Caroline was there by default of being too close to the situation in general. None of this should have happened to Caroline, and it was entirely Molly’s fault.

Across Worlds: Collision goes live!! #LGBT #scifi #erotica #lesbian #F/F

Across Worlds: Collision is LIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This has been a long time coming. It was written a year and a half ago and took this long to get to the end of the process. I’m so thrilled and excited to share it with you all!

If you’re new and don’t know what Across Worlds: Collision is, well, let me tell you.  =P70a86-awccover

***

Jane expected six months undercover to be hard; she expected it to be lonely and bleak. She didn’t expect to find love.

Jane Butler, a CIA operative, is assigned the task of infiltrating the Xanthians and determining if they’re a threat to humanity. Going undercover as a Xanthian mate, she boards the transport ship and meets Usnavi—her new mate. After spending six days traveling through space, Jane is ecstatic to explore the Xanthian station and soon sets out to complete her mission. The only problem? Usnavi—and the feelings she is quickly developing.

Fumbling their way through varying sexual expectations, cooking catastrophes, and cultural differences, they soon discover life together is never boring. As Jane and Usnavi careen into a relationship neither of them expected, Jane uncovers dark secrets about the Xanthians and realizes she may no longer be safe. When it becomes clear she’s on her own, Jane is forced to trust and rely on Usnavi. Simultaneously struggling with her mission, her feelings for Usnavi, and homesickness, Jane faces questions she never imagined she would have to answer.

***

Doesn’t this sound like a fun and awesome read? It’s going on a tour soon too! I wanted to share with you a review from a tour it went on in July.

S. A. Snow’s “Across Worlds: Collision” is steamy and perfect, especially if you like both M/F and F/F action! Usnavi, the leading alien of the novel, is capable of changing sexes and this makes for some hawt encounters! I loved this book – couldn’t put it down. Very sexy and also a great storyline. Kind of a sexed up version of “Calculating God” by Robert J. Sawyer. A really great, complete, standalone book. Also, strangely, if you suffered through morning sickness and other pregnancy woes, there’s a little bit of turn-about-is-fair-play in this book on that count! Amazing! 4.5 out of 5

http://ow.ly/zpW4g

I mean, come on! When I saw that I jumped and grinned all day long!!

Here’s some buy links for AWC if you’re interested in checking it out.

Amazon USA
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
iTunes
Barnes & Noble
Smashwords
Kobo

 

#authorcorner Interview with GEONN CANNON

Welcome everyone!! Today we have an interview with none other than Geonn Cannon. I know Geonn through fandom and twitter. We both have a strong love of Amanda Tapping and writing!

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Geonn Cannon, I was born in Oklahoma, and my original plan was to be an actor. I took a half-semester of Creative Writing and four years of Drama (theatre class) so you can see where my priorities were back in those days. We had a project senior year to write and film something, and our group decided to do a Saturday Night Live-type thing. I wrote most of the skits, and it turned out I enjoyed that much, much more than acting in them. Plus writing seemed much, much less constrained and I had more freedom to do what I wanted with a story.

What is one thing not in your bio, something totally random that only a few people know?

I like my bed to be as cold as possible when I get into it. So much so that I will move my pillows and blankets if I have to sit on the side of the mattress for any length of time. I know it’s supposed to be the other way around, it’s supposed to be a nice cozy cocoon, but I prefer warming it up myself.

What are you currently writing?

At the moment I’m working on revisions for my official Stargate SG-1 novel, “Two Roads.” It was such a huge honor getting the opportunity to write for the series. I credit Stargate with jumpstarting my writing career. Before taking a trip to the Pacific Northwest for a Stargate convention, I had never really thought of it as a place to set stories. I was randomly putting everything I wrote in Chicago. But once I was there, I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I think On the Air might have been as popular if it had been set somewhere else, but it wouldn’t have been the same story. Would it have been snapped up by the publishers if Nadine was a disc-jockey in a small Chicago suburb? Maybe.  But I wouldn’t want to find out.

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Geonn Cannon, I was born in Oklahoma, and my original plan was to be an actor. I took a half-semester of Creative Writing and four years of Drama (theatre class) so you can see where my priorities were back in those days. We had a project senior year to write and film something, and our group decided to do a Saturday Night Live-type thing. I wrote most of the skits, and it turned out I enjoyed that much, much more than acting in them. Plus writing seemed much, much less constrained and I had more freedom to do what I wanted with a story.

What is one thing not in your bio, something totally random that only a few people know?

I like my bed to be as cold as possible when I get into it. So much so that I will move my pillows and blankets if I have to sit on the side of the mattress for any length of time. I know it’s supposed to be the other way around, it’s supposed to be a nice cozy cocoon, but I prefer warming it up myself.

What are you currently writing?

At the moment I’m working on revisions for my official Stargate SG-1 novel, “Two Roads.” It was such a huge honor getting the opportunity to write for the series. I credit Stargate with jumpstarting my writing career. Before taking a trip to the Pacific Northwest for a Stargate convention, I had never really thought of it as a place to set stories. I was randomly putting everything I wrote in Chicago. But once I was there, I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I think On the Air might have been as popular if it had been set somewhere else, but it wouldn’t have been the same story. Would it have been snapped up by the publishers if Nadine was a disc-jockey in a small Chicago suburb? Maybe.  But I wouldn’t want to find out.

Who has been your biggest inspiration and support in writing and in publishing? Doesn’t have to be an author or anything, and yes, it can be your mom or dad.

My best friend in high school, Robert, was a big influence on me in terms of giving me confidence in myself and my abilities. It wasn’t the usual motivational situation where he gave me a pep talk or rallied me to put pen to paper. We randomly started writing a story together that highly exaggerated our lives, sort of like South Park meets… some highly self-indulgence thinly-veiled bio pic. We were the heroes, our least-favorite teacher was the villain, Bruce Willis made a cameo if I recall. We would alternate chapters, with me writing one and then he’d respond. That went on for a few weeks until he finally said he wanted to stop because my chapters were always so much better than his and he couldn’t compete. But he wanted me to keep writing until the story was done because he wanted to see how it ended. So that’s the lesson here, kids. If you rage-quit, you may just inspire your friend’s entire career.

Why write lesbian fiction?

I won’t lie and claim there’s no “lesbians are hot” component, but that’s not the reason. I realized early on that I always preferred the female characters in fiction. Who cares what Riker is doing, what is Troi up to on the bridge? Can we see some more of Dr. Crusher, please? When I started writing I went the traditional route with a male protagonist who had several women in his life (and yes, one of them was a lesbian). The story never felt complete, never felt right, and I’ve written and rewritten that novel so many times that I honestly have just given up on it. After that I thought, “Well, I like writing the female characters so much more… why don’t I just put as many of them as I can into a story? And if there needs to be a romance, I’ll let them romance each other.” Not to mention the fact the world is overstuffed with male protagonists. Let the women run the show for a change.

What do you think about authors who continue to write both fanfiction and original fiction? (This seems to be a constant debate/conversation to me.)

I don’t really have an opinion on it. I think fanfiction is a great way to hone your skills, using a ready-made template of characters and universe rules so you can focus on the actual process of telling a story without the extra work. It’s like a self-taught class in How to Write. That said, in my experience, once you start focusing more on original writing, the less you’ll be inspired for fanfiction. I wanted to build in my own worlds and play in my own sandbox. Plus every day spent writing fanfiction is a day you can’t spend writing a story you could sell.

Tell us about Girls Don’t Hit.

It started as just a two-word reminder in my notepad: “female hitman.” I thought it would be a good action-y, thriller story to fill the void Riley Parra left when that series ended. After that I started building the world, figuring out who Joss/Jocelyn was, what her motivations were, and I realized this would be one of my least-loved characters ever. Which is not a bad thing! Everyone who has read it so far says that they would cross the street to avoid Joss, but they were also oddly drawn to her. I think that’s the intriguing thing about her. She’s cold, heartless, methodical, and unapologetic. She’s a sociopath, really. She observes other people for clues of how she should react in various situations. She may be unlovable, but she’s certainly one of my more intriguing characters.

What do you do when you get stuck in your writing? What happens when that nasty writer’s block sets down and refuses to budge—if you believe in writer’s block that is?

I really don’t believe in writer’s block. I believe in bad days, out of the writing mood, uninspired, logy… everyone needs a weekend/vacation/mental health day. But since writers can decide when and how we get those days, we feel guilty taking them and we have to call it writer’s block. When a story isn’t coming or the words are like pulling teeth, I usually just decide it’s an off day and catch up on Netflix or reading. Odds are the inspiration of someone else’s fiction will put me back on the right track.

I know you love Radiation Canary, tell us why?

First and foremost, I wrote it for an extremely dear friend of mine. She introduced me to Brandi Carlile, and almost immediately said, “You need to write a book about a singer!” I was utterly uninterested and kept putting her off, but then I buckled down and thought, “Well, what would that look like?” Secondly, because of the scope (the novel takes place over ten years), I was able to toss in a few things that might not have gotten covered in an ordinary novel. I had relationships that started and ended, I had Karen growing from a nervous and awkward outsider to a proud band member. I really, truly love all my characters, but the band feels even more special. They’re my girls! As I was writing them I found myself falling in love with all of them in different ways, and I’m so proud of how they turned out.

What does your dream writing location look like?

A wood-paneled room with a window looking out at something Pacific Northwest-y, a desk and a comfy couch (I’d do most of my writing on the couch, I’m sure, because the desk is facing the window and much too distracting) with one wall of bookshelves. Not too big, just enough room to pace around if necessary.

Would you mind sharing some of your ups and some of your downs about writing and about publishing? Any advice to new and upcoming authors?

Writing is so slow and frustrating. I remember way back when William H Macy was on Leno, promoting a movie he had written. Leno, in his infinite obtuseness, mentioned that it must have been fun to relax and write instead of having to act. Macy quite seriously said, “No, writing is not FUN. Writing SUCKS.” The act of writing, creating characters, is one of the most fun things you can do. Actually crafting and polishing that into a readable story can be one of the most frustrating things. My advice to anyone who wants to write is to write. I’ll steal Stephen King’s advice: “If you want to write, then you have to write a lot and read a lot.” It’s brilliant and very true. Don’t get discouraged when you realize how tedious editing can be, don’t throw in the towel when you finally get paid for a story and you can deposit that seven bucks directly into your account. Writing is one of the few jobs you can get by just showing up every day and getting to work.

What is your best memory from the whole writing and publishing process?

The night I got an email from P.D. Publishing telling me they wanted On the Air. My best friend/supporter/current publisher was just about to leave for the night when I got the news, so I was able to celebrate with her. Afterward I went for a walk and it was cold, and it was drizzling, and I was just so thrilled that I couldn’t stop smiling. Someone wanted my book! I was finally a professional writer. You never forget your first.

QUICKIES!

1. Dog or Cat? Cat
2. Favorite color? Blue
3. Favorite junk food? Donut Sticks
4. Favorite musician? Josh Ritter/David Bowie (depending on my mood)
5. Favorite curse word? Shite. It just sounds so refined and classy.
6. Favorite quote? “You are all better than you think you are. You are just designed not to believe it when you hear it from yourself.” – Community
7. Rolaids or Tums? What’s the generic?
8. Short or Tall? Short, I guess.
9. Favorite body part? Dangerous question… But I’ll say my head. In high school I hated getting haircuts so it would get so long and unruly, and I’d have to wash the whole mess, and comb it and ugh. When it started to fall out, I said, “Screw it,” and started getting it cut as close as I could without shaving. Then I went whole hog and my only regret is that I didn’t do it sooner. I really like how my head looks. It’s a good shape for baldness. I seriously sometimes even catch a glimpse of my shadow and think, “Yeah, that’s a good head shape. I approve, skull.”
10. Favorite holiday? I don’t really have one. It’s a bit narcissistic to say my birthday, because that’s all about me, but I don’t really like any one holiday above another.

Books

 

OTACover

 

Nadine Butler is a popular disc-jockey at KELF, the classic rock station in Squire’s Isle, Washington. She’s currently in the closet with her girlfriend and she thinks she’s happy that way. And the end of a bad day, Nadine goes to a Town Hall meeting to take sides in a book-banning debate and manages to out herself in front of the town. Desperate, under pressure and under siege from the startled, family-oriented advertisers and the station’s unsupportive owner, Nadine does one last show. With help coming from some unforeseen corners, she decides to make the most of her last time on the air.

 

 

 

 

 

RCCover

 

 

Karen Everett isn’t looking to join a band the day she loses her notebook of poetry. She plays the cello and is unsure about what she wants in life, but she’s pretty sure it doesn’t involve being a professional musician. But a crush on the band’s beautiful lead singer Lana Kent, along with the desire to have her poetry shared with a larger audience, leads her to throw caution to the wind and play an audition that leads to her being invited to join the band at gigs. After a spur of the moment decision lands them a spot on national television, Karen and the band find themselves riding an unexpected wave of popularity.

BUY LINKS
BIO
Geonn Cannon is the author of 20 novels (and counting). He was born in Oklahoma and spends his free time thinking up cool and exciting things to do. Then he creates fictional characters and has them to all the cool and exciting things for him, since it’s much easier than actually going outside himself. He is currently writing an official Stargate SG-1 novel for Fandemonium and working with Tello Films in an effort to bring Riley Parra to life as a webseries. Contrary to popular belief, he does sleep. Usually every day.

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Geonn Cannon, I was born in Oklahoma, and my original plan was to be an actor. I took a half-semester of Creative Writing and four years of Drama (theatre class) so you can see where my priorities were back in those days. We had a project senior year to write and film something, and our group decided to do a Saturday Night Live-type thing. I wrote most of the skits, and it turned out I enjoyed that much, much more than acting in them. Plus writing seemed much, much less constrained and I had more freedom to do what I wanted with a story.

What is one thing not in your bio, something totally random that only a few people know?

I like my bed to be as cold as possible when I get into it. So much so that I will move my pillows and blankets if I have to sit on the side of the mattress for any length of time. I know it’s supposed to be the other way around, it’s supposed to be a nice cozy cocoon, but I prefer warming it up myself.

What are you currently writing?

At the moment I’m working on revisions for my official Stargate SG-1 novel, “Two Roads.” It was such a huge honor getting the opportunity to write for the series. I credit Stargate with jumpstarting my writing career. Before taking a trip to the Pacific Northwest for a Stargate convention, I had never really thought of it as a place to set stories. I was randomly putting everything I wrote in Chicago. But once I was there, I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I think On the Air might have been as popular if it had been set somewhere else, but it wouldn’t have been the same story. Would it have been snapped up by the publishers if Nadine was a disc-jockey in a small Chicago suburb? Maybe.  But I wouldn’t want to find out.

Who has been your biggest inspiration and support in writing and in publishing? Doesn’t have to be an author or anything, and yes, it can be your mom or dad.

My best friend in high school, Robert, was a big influence on me in terms of giving me confidence in myself and my abilities. It wasn’t the usual motivational situation where he gave me a pep talk or rallied me to put pen to paper. We randomly started writing a story together that highly exaggerated our lives, sort of like South Park meets… some highly self-indulgence thinly-veiled bio pic. We were the heroes, our least-favorite teacher was the villain, Bruce Willis made a cameo if I recall. We would alternate chapters, with me writing one and then he’d respond. That went on for a few weeks until he finally said he wanted to stop because my chapters were always so much better than his and he couldn’t compete. But he wanted me to keep writing until the story was done because he wanted to see how it ended. So that’s the lesson here, kids. If you rage-quit, you may just inspire your friend’s entire career.

Why write lesbian fiction?

I won’t lie and claim there’s no “lesbians are hot” component, but that’s not the reason. I realized early on that I always preferred the female characters in fiction. Who cares what Riker is doing, what is Troi up to on the bridge? Can we see some more of Dr. Crusher, please? When I started writing I went the traditional route with a male protagonist who had several women in his life (and yes, one of them was a lesbian). The story never felt complete, never felt right, and I’ve written and rewritten that novel so many times that I honestly have just given up on it. After that I thought, “Well, I like writing the female characters so much more… why don’t I just put as many of them as I can into a story? And if there needs to be a romance, I’ll let them romance each other.” Not to mention the fact the world is overstuffed with male protagonists. Let the women run the show for a change.

What do you think about authors who continue to write both fanfiction and original fiction? (This seems to be a constant debate/conversation to me.)

I don’t really have an opinion on it. I think fanfiction is a great way to hone your skills, using a ready-made template of characters and universe rules so you can focus on the actual process of telling a story without the extra work. It’s like a self-taught class in How to Write. That said, in my experience, once you start focusing more on original writing, the less you’ll be inspired for fanfiction. I wanted to build in my own worlds and play in my own sandbox. Plus every day spent writing fanfiction is a day you can’t spend writing a story you could sell.

Tell us about Girls Don’t Hit.

It started as just a two-word reminder in my notepad: “female hitman.” I thought it would be a good action-y, thriller story to fill the void Riley Parra left when that series ended. After that I started building the world, figuring out who Joss/Jocelyn was, what her motivations were, and I realized this would be one of my least-loved characters ever. Which is not a bad thing! Everyone who has read it so far says that they would cross the street to avoid Joss, but they were also oddly drawn to her. I think that’s the intriguing thing about her. She’s cold, heartless, methodical, and unapologetic. She’s a sociopath, really. She observes other people for clues of how she should react in various situations. She may be unlovable, but she’s certainly one of my more intriguing characters.

What do you do when you get stuck in your writing? What happens when that nasty writer’s block sets down and refuses to budge—if you believe in writer’s block that is?

I really don’t believe in writer’s block. I believe in bad days, out of the writing mood, uninspired, logy… everyone needs a weekend/vacation/mental health day. But since writers can decide when and how we get those days, we feel guilty taking them and we have to call it writer’s block. When a story isn’t coming or the words are like pulling teeth, I usually just decide it’s an off day and catch up on Netflix or reading. Odds are the inspiration of someone else’s fiction will put me back on the right track.

I know you love Radiation Canary, tell us why?

First and foremost, I wrote it for an extremely dear friend of mine. She introduced me to Brandi Carlile, and almost immediately said, “You need to write a book about a singer!” I was utterly uninterested and kept putting her off, but then I buckled down and thought, “Well, what would that look like?” Secondly, because of the scope (the novel takes place over ten years), I was able to toss in a few things that might not have gotten covered in an ordinary novel. I had relationships that started and ended, I had Karen growing from a nervous and awkward outsider to a proud band member. I really, truly love all my characters, but the band feels even more special. They’re my girls! As I was writing them I found myself falling in love with all of them in different ways, and I’m so proud of how they turned out.

What does your dream writing location look like?

A wood-paneled room with a window looking out at something Pacific Northwest-y, a desk and a comfy couch (I’d do most of my writing on the couch, I’m sure, because the desk is facing the window and much too distracting) with one wall of bookshelves. Not too big, just enough room to pace around if necessary.

Would you mind sharing some of your ups and some of your downs about writing and about publishing? Any advice to new and upcoming authors?

Writing is so slow and frustrating. I remember way back when William H Macy was on Leno, promoting a movie he had written. Leno, in his infinite obtuseness, mentioned that it must have been fun to relax and write instead of having to act. Macy quite seriously said, “No, writing is not FUN. Writing SUCKS.” The act of writing, creating characters, is one of the most fun things you can do. Actually crafting and polishing that into a readable story can be one of the most frustrating things. My advice to anyone who wants to write is to write. I’ll steal Stephen King’s advice: “If you want to write, then you have to write a lot and read a lot.” It’s brilliant and very true. Don’t get discouraged when you realize how tedious editing can be, don’t throw in the towel when you finally get paid for a story and you can deposit that seven bucks directly into your account. Writing is one of the few jobs you can get by just showing up every day and getting to work.

What is your best memory from the whole writing and publishing process?

The night I got an email from P.D. Publishing telling me they wanted On the Air. My best friend/supporter/current publisher was just about to leave for the night when I got the news, so I was able to celebrate with her. Afterward I went for a walk and it was cold, and it was drizzling, and I was just so thrilled that I couldn’t stop smiling. Someone wanted my book! I was finally a professional writer. You never forget your first.

QUICKIES!

1. Dog or Cat? Cat
2. Favorite color?
Blue
3. Favorite junk food?
Donut Sticks
4. Favorite musician?
Josh Ritter/David Bowie (depending on my mood)
5. Favorite curse word?
Shite. It just sounds so refined and classy.
6. Favorite quote?
“You are all better than you think you are. You are just designed not to believe it when you hear it from yourself.” – Community
7. Rolaids or Tums?
What’s the generic?
8. Short or Tall?
Short, I guess.
9. Favorite body part?
Dangerous question… But I’ll say my head. In high school I hated getting haircuts so it would get so long and unruly, and I’d have to wash the whole mess, and comb it and ugh. When it started to fall out, I said, “Screw it,” and started getting it cut as close as I could without shaving. Then I went whole hog and my only regret is that I didn’t do it sooner. I really like how my head looks. It’s a good shape for baldness. I seriously sometimes even catch a glimpse of my shadow and think, “Yeah, that’s a good head shape. I approve, skull.”
10. Favorite holiday?
I don’t really have one. It’s a bit narcissistic to say my birthday, because that’s all about me, but I don’t really like any one holiday above another.

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LGBT Main v Side — Rachel Eliason #authorcorner

Every novel I have written has some LGBT characters in it. In most cases they play a central role or are the main character.

LGBT people have always played a large role in my life. Long before I personally had the courage to come out as transgender and transition to living as a woman, I had many LGBT friends. I have an openly lesbian sister. I have had many close friends that are virtually everywhere on the spectrum, gay, lesbian, bi, you name it.

As a writer, we write what we know. A story that doesn’t contain some LGBT people, doesn’t seem realistic to me.

LGBT Main Characters Versus Side Characters

My first published novel was Run, Clarissa, Run. The main character of that novel is a transgender teen. She starts the story as Clarke, a confused “boy” who knows nothing about transgender people or transition. As soon as she finds out that there is “real help, not crappy doesn’t-really-help psychological help,” to quote her, she is all about coming out and transitioning.

Living in a small town in Iowa, this is easier said than accomplished. There are bullies to be overcome, computers to be hacked and before all is said and done, a sexual predator to stop.

At the time I had two goals with Run, Clarissa, Run. As a transgender woman myself and a writer, I felt uniquely qualified to take the readers inside the head of a transperson. I hope this novel gives the average reader a small taste of what it actually feels like to be trans.

For the trans youth, I hoped to the transcend the other novels I have seen in this genre. Coming out and dealing with being transgender is a monumental task at times, but trans people are capable of more than just this. I wanted to book to be an action story with the trans character as the heroine.

Being inside the head of the trans character for almost the entire novel had its advantages and it’s disadvantages. There are moments that show what it feels like to look out of a trans person’s eyes. You get to come along for the whirlwind of emotions as the character grapples with their gender.

The disadvantage, especially in a YA novel, is the limitations of the characters own perspective. Clarissa spends most of the novel in a very dark place. She is bullied relentlessly by a gang of four boys. Her mother doesn’t understand, doesn’t understand how bad the bullying is, doesn’t understand what Clarissa’s gender identity means to her. The first man to reach out to Clarissa turns out to be something other than he appears.

The astute reader can read between the lines and see that this isn’t the whole story. The bullies are only a small gang and many other kids at school like her. Her mother does love her, even if she can’t understand all of it. Clarissa struggles. She can’t see any of this because that’s what being a victim of bullying does. It forces blinders on you. You see only the torment being inflicted. You interpret every silence, every failed attempt to help, as approval for the bullies.

I wrote The Best Boy Ever Made shortly after I completed Run, Clarissa, Run. Due to various circumstances it only came out recently. When I started drafting this novel, I wanted to take a different approach. I wanted to show a more balanced view of being LGBT. To do that I opted not to use the trans character as the main character, but to tell the entire story through the eyes of the best friend.

As Sam makes the transition from Samantha to Samuel, we get to see how Alecia’s view of her best friend changes. There is bullying. A lot of people don’t approve of what Sam is contemplating. But there are also a lot of people who stand up for Sam, support him in his decision.

Alecia never fully “gets” what it means to Sam to be transgender. But she understands that Sam is serious, dead serious. Alecia has to go through her own transition, not as deep as the one Sam is going through, but a transition nonetheless.

As a writer you are faced with tough choices about how to approach a story or an issue. Choosing the point of view character can drastically alter how the story turns out for the reader. This is true of all stories, but especially important with YA novels and with LGBT characters. Coming out may have a sense of inevitability for an LGBT character, they’ve struggled with issues surrounding their gender or sexuality for years sometime before admitting it. For the individual on the receiving end, it’s all new. The confession may lead to unexpected emotional reactions, a sense they are running to catch up to where the LGBT person is in terms of acceptance. Which point of view best serves the story is individual and often personal.

Bio:

Rachel Eliason is a transgender woman and writer living in the Midwest. She writes contemporary YA stories under her given name and fantasy/science fiction under the name R. J. Eliason.

Her contemporary YA novels published as Rachel Eliason include Run, Clarissa, Run, The Case of Nikki Pagan, and The Best Boy Ever Made. Rosie and the Slenderman is expected to be released in the summer of 2014. Her fantasy novels published as R. J. Eliason include the Bear Naked saga, Bear Naked, Bear Naked 2: Wolf Camp. Bear Naked 3: The Hunter and the Hunted is slated for fall of 2014.

Rachel is active on many social media and can be found on twitter @racheleliason, Facebook, Google + and Pinterest, to name a few.

 

Buy Links:

 

Run, Clarissa, Run

Life in a small town can be tough when you’re a little different, but for a fifteen year old transgender kid it can truly be hell. Clark is harassed daily at school for his effeminate behavior and appearance. He has no friends and a brother that is as likely to be on the teasing as to prevent it.

 

When Clark is offered a job babysitting for the Pirella family, it seems like a godsend. The money is good. He bonds with the girls almost instantly. The father, Tony, works in computer security. Tony and Clark strike up a friendship based on a mutual love of computers and hacking.

 

As Tony becomes aware of Clark’s transsexuality and his growing feminine alter ego, Clarissa, things become incredibly complicated. Will Tony be Clarissa’s salvation, or her undoing?

 

The Best Boy Ever Made

Alecia Mueller, a conservative country girl, knows how her life is going to turn out. She is going to grow up, meet “the one,” get married and live in the country. When her best friends Sam comes out as a Female to Male Transgender, she chooses personal loyalty and friendship over politics. But what if the boy that Sam is becoming is “the one?”

Write what you know, but be cautious with character assassination #authorcorner Algenon Lusch

Today I have a guest post from Algie, and I can honestly say it’s an awesome post!! It’s something every writer should think about and dwell upon before, during, and after they are writing. This happens whether it is fiction or non-fiction. Without further ado, I give you…

Write what you know, but be cautious with character assassination

 They say that writing from experience is the best way to create a story that grips people. The ‘write what you know’ adage is important, particularly if you’re relying on plot factors which require pinpoint accuracy on, say, medical treatments or the layout of a courtroom. Get it right, and readers won’t even notice. Get it wrong and, I assure you, there’ll be reviews pointing out the problems. Meanwhile, if you’re not writing from an exact circumstance, you’ll often draw on past experiences, even if it’s simply a feeling, such as when you were dumped for the first time. Experience is an essential tool for a writer, helping us to create scenarios, bring our characters to life and cause emotional reactions within readers; people who’ve only spent moments with the books we’ve held in our hearts for many months and years. But experience is also something to be slightly wary of too because what do you do if you’re book is almost an exact replica of past events?

You might think there’s no problem at all when this situation arises. In fact, writing a story in this manner essentially allows you to regurgitate exactly what happened without much thought at all. It can be nostalgic (I find that looking back into the past has a rosy tint to it), and there can be joy in revisiting the past whilst creating something new for the future. However, if you’re writing the truth, particularly from just your point of view, then care has to be taken.

I’ve been in this exact predicament myself with my 52 First Dates series. You’ll note on the cover that it clearly states ‘Based on a true story’. I can assure you, that it really is. I went through the 52 First Dates process, met the men, had my heart broken and dealt with many crisis – often from friends – along the way. But, as much as I might have hated a date, or thought them impolite and arrogant, when I’m committing them to paper, especially within these forever-lasting ebook stories, there has to be a little caution about denigrating someone’s entire character. As I mentioned, this is only one point of view; what about how they felt? How would they react when reading the latest M/M book and recognising themselves within its pages?

You could, of course, throw caution to the wind. Change their names, perhaps change the setting and then leave everything else intact. Allow yourself to deconstruct every bad trait you believed them to have, and put it out there for everyone to see. I’m not quite able to do that, and spend time trying to balance it out a little. Yes, I’m writing these dates from almost exact experience, and yes, the men in my books are pretty much as they were in real life. But, I can’t help think about how I’d feel if suddenly, and glaringly, my personality was starting up at me from the pages of a book. If you’ve created a fictitious character, even if they might be based on someone, then you mightn’t need so much care. However, if what you’re writing is true in setting, tone, character and outcome, if it’s obvious who someone might be, then I’d be a little kinder because you just don’t know what the outcome might be.

Do you write from experience? Could you be kind, or would you let your passion lead you?

Books

Portrait of handsome man lying naked on bed.The Man PLAN

Now that David’s heading towards his mid-30s, he’s finally realised that it’s time to find a husband. But with so many men and so little time, he realises he’s going to have to be strategic if he’s ever to find his soulmate.

Thus, 52 First Dates is formed; a challenge, a scheme, to go on a date with a new man, every week, for a year. If it pays off, he’ll be in marital bliss. If it doesn’t, he’ll know that he’s fated with being the eternal bachelor. With everything to live for, David plunges into the world of dating in search of the perfect man.

The Man Plan is a 12,000K SHORT STORY, or about 37 pages in length.

M/M Steam-level: HOT!!

Buy Links

 Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/A.-Lusch/e/B00EB6OWSU/

Smashwords:  https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/ALusch

GooglePlay: https://play.google.com/store/books/author?id=A.+Lusch

Are: http://www.allromanceebooks.com/storeSearch.html?searchBy=author&qString=A.+Lusch

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/a.-lusch

 Friends and FRENCHMENPortrait of handsome man lying naked on bed.

With David in his mid-30’s, it’s time to get serious about finding a husband. Too many men and not enough time, mean he’s embarked on the challenge of a lifetime; to date a new man every week for a year until he finds THE ONE.

With one date out the way, and many more to come, David’s realising there’s a reason it’s so hard to find a soulmate. And, with friends, lovers and lust getting in the way, finding a husband might be harder than he thought.

Friends and FRENCHMEN is a 12,500k SHORT STORY, or about 35 pages.

M/M Steam-Level: SIZZLING

 

social media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AlgenonLusch

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AlgenonLusch

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7191612.A_Lusch

#authorcorner with V.C.!!

Today I’m excited to say that V.C. is joining us! I met V.C. on one of the many facebook groups that I’m a part of and through facebook pages. I couldn’t be happier that she decided to join us today.

Tell us about yourself.

I’ll just share my author bio since it’s most convenient and to-the-point:180917_608094995814_5594213_n

V.C. writes lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans* romance/erotica fiction that she affectionately calls glitterotica. Her writing career started in high school where she gained a reputation for her historical short stories, even having been given a couple of gold key awards from Scholastic Inc. She got her start writing erotica during college. After having numerous short erotica stories published on Oysters&Chocolate.com, she has since had various erotic shorts published in anthologies and has written six novels so far, and counting. She’s been published by O&C Press, Ravenous Romance, Freaky Fountain, Cleis Press, Go Deeper Press, and Storm Moon Press.

When she’s not writing, V.C. enjoys reading literature, watching classic movies, studying French (and occasionally Icelandic), going to concerts, museums, and drag shows, and simply taking each day as it comes and enjoying life’s simple pleasures. She currently lives in New Jersey.

What is one thing not in your bio, something totally random that only a few people know?

That I am intersex. Not too many people would know this about me because the term “intersex” (meaning that someone was born with both male and female genitalia) leaves people confused because it’s not openly talked about and is still a baby term that hasn’t yet made a big mark on our culture yet. Like, it’s not a household name or anything where people, when they hear it, would go, “Oh, I know what that means.” I wish that were the case because then it would make things less awkward and annoying for me especially when dating and sex is concerned.

Once in a while it hits the radar in the media (like when it was reported that Germany now has a third-gender law for infants born with “ambiguous genitalia”) but I think people still don’t understand what “intersex” is and what it is like growing up and being an intersex individual. Plus, people wouldn’t know this about me because I don’t go around letting everyone know that my body is different from the average female. However, it is something that I’m not afraid to let be known when the opportunity calls for it, which I feel fine and comfortable doing in author interviews. It’s part of who I am as a person and in some ways has shaped me into the LGBT author that I’ve become.

Wow, very interesting. I’ll definitely be keeping that in mind for a while and seeing how we would do things different if intersex were a more common term. But back to writing, what made you decide to write? If it even was a decision. And what kept you at it?

It wasn’t a decision for me. When you are passionate about something, it’s just something that you do, and the “keeping at it” part is something you just do naturally. There’s no other way for me to explain it. I do what I love and what turns me on, and it’s the love and turn-on that keeps me focused on it.

Who has been your biggest inspiration and support in writing and in publishing?

I’d say my teachers during middle school and high school. I don’t want to mention names; I’d rather keep that to myself and their identities private. Many of them time and time again would comment about how I should look into getting published. Some of them even went out of their way to get me published in the school paper. One of them (a drama teacher) had one of my plays for a class project get turned into a stage production that actually got to be on a stage for people to watch and enjoy. They saw my potential in ways that at the time, being so young and all, I just didn’t see. I was only doing what I enjoyed doing on my free time. It was just a hobby then. Now, not so much ;).

That’s great! Why is it that you are an independent author? What prompted the decision to publish with a small press publisher, and how has that experience been?

imagesI never really put much thought as to “why” I am an “independent” author. I guess I am an independent author because I like being an independent person? I don’t know, hehe, I only see myself as just an author. I send my short stories and novel manuscripts to publishers that intrigue me based on their unique anthology calls or because they publish work that I would (or have) actually read myself. They just so happened to be a small press/independent publisher. It doesn’t matter to me if a publisher is independent/small or mainstream.

Not all publishers are created equal of course, but in my mind, be it a small or big publisher, they are the same. Just different in their own way. It’s just a pleasure working with publishers that I admire and respect like oysters&chocolate.com and Freaky Fountain, both who are sadly defunct, Go Deeper Press, Cleis Press, and Storm Moon Press. My experiences with these publishers have been eye-openers in many ways because each press was different and unique in their editing and promotion process. Not entirely perfect experiences, I’ll admit, but even in their imperfections they are absolutely fabulous to work with, and I’m happy to be an author for all of them.

What has been your experience going from short stories and publishing with anthologies, to your first novel and publishing a full-length work?

Oh, it’s just a fun and wild ride. There’s one other thing that not many know about me: I get bored very easily. Not bored as in “Oh, I have nothing to do, I am bored,” but “If I don’t do a variety of things outside of just writing short stories or writing just novels, I’ll be bored out of my mind.”  This variety is what makes the whole experience of going from short stories to full-length works more exciting for me and keeps me from that restlessly bored feeling.

I love the challenge of writing a story in its short-form, but I also enjoy the commitment of being in a relationship, so to speak, with a 50K-100K manuscript for two months before I try and find it a new home. I write these short stories/novels based on the mood I am in. Sometimes I am in the mood to write novels, sometimes I’d rather just write short stories and send them to anthology calls.  I’m still learning to master the art of both forms of storytelling, and that’s really the best part of the experience of going from short stories to a full-length work: the learning process.

Speaking of full-length work, The Man on Top of the World will be your first full-length novel, if I understand correctly, tell us a bit about what goes on in the story.

On the surface it’s a rock and roll love triangle. It takes place during the 1970s glam rock era (think T. Rex, David Bowie, Roxie Music, Lou Reed, and Suzie Quatro). The love triangle in The Man on Top of the World is between a glam rock drummer boy (Jonathan Maxwell, the narrator of the story), the glam rock superstar that he works for and can’t help but fall foolishly in love with (Izzy Rich), and the glam rock groupie (Roxanne Foster, Izzy’s fan girl) who comes between them. The love triangle aside though, in the core of it, The Man on Top of the World is a love story between two passionate, beautiful, and flawed men who, for better and for worse, are meant to be together as the best of mates and as lovers.

You put images and sounds to your characters in The Man on Top of the World when doing character sketches. How is this helpful for you?

This is more helpful for the reader than it is for me. The images and sounds are all in my head. After the manuscript was finished, that was when I decided on doing the character profiles for Izzy, Jonathan, and Roxanne, which then prompted me to search for pictures and video clips that comes as close to those images/sounds in my head as possible.  I do the character profiles for my readers because it’s just a fun way for them to get to know the characters before they get their hands on the book. I’d hope that from those character profiles, and from all the images and sounds I put into them, that it would have the reader feel like they already know (and hopefully identity with) the characters before reading The Man on Top of the World.

So you did entire blog posts on three characters in The Man on Top of the World. I’m going to be mean and ask for one single sentence on each of those characters.

Jonathan Maxwell—a pansexual, drama-queen, hopeless romantic who has such ridiculously fine taste in clothes, jewelry, women, and men.

Izzy Rich—an eccentric pretty boy/egomaniac turned messiah and pariah who, despite all his fame, musical genius, and celebrity, is a tortured soul.

Roxanne Foster—a good girl who has a lot of bite and a whole lot more moxie that she’s too modest to show, offstage, anyway.

If you could meet one character in real life from The Man on Top of the World—and yes, I know this is a hard question—who would it be and why?

Without question, Izzy. I identify with him in many ways, not as the rock star, but as the man. He’s eccentric, misunderstood, and a child at heart, like me. He’s like me in many ways, but he’s far off from being me in a lot of other ways. I’m broke, he’s not, but he used to be, so he doesn’t take his fame and money for granted because of his poverty-stricken upbringing. I’d be the same if I was rich and famous. We both embrace our androgyny, but he is way more over the top and ballsy about expressing his androgyny and femininity. He’s more in touch with his feminine side than I am; he just doesn’t give a fuck, he does and wears what he wants. I can’t walk in a pair of high heels to save my life; he can because wearing high heels is his life. He can be a total asshole, but he’s one that I adore and would love to meet in real life if he were real. That would be so awesome if he was.  A girl can dream.

What has been your process through writing The Man on Top of the World, and how has it been similar or different from your normal writing process?

The Man on Top of the World was originally a short story submission for Storm Moon Press’s Glam Rock anthology call. They GDP002-FemmeFatale_30didn’t get enough submissions for the anthology to go forward, but they liked my story and felt that the word count was high enough to be turned into a short novella. From there, it evolved into a novel. So, in a way, this process of writing The Man on Top of the World has really been like watching a child grow into an adult. The short story was its baby phase, the short novella form was its teenage years, and the novel makes it all grown up. None of this was intentional. It just happened that way.

I wouldn’t say this transformation has made the writing process different. It was about the same. The only change was that I had to expand on a lot of areas in The Man on Top of the World that needed to be there, mostly because of the sequel, All That Glitters. At the time when I wrote The Man on Top of the World, I didn’t plan a sequel. All That Glitters (Izzy’s autobiography/bildungsroman) came a bit later, and I wasn’t planning on having it published in the first place, actually. I did it only as a fun side piece for my own keeping. It was when the story took off that I decided on getting it published. After that sequel got picked up by Storm Moon Press, I had to go back to The Man on Top of the World many times to make sure that some areas were consistent with the sequel. Sorry that I’m intentionally being vague about what those “things” and “areas” are. I’m a no spoilers kind of gal.

Haha! That’s perfectly fine! So, what do you do when you get stuck in your writing? What happens when that nasty writer’s block sets down and refuses to budge?

A lot of writers might hate me for saying this, or may not believe me at all, but I rarely if ever get writer’s block. I’ve had times where I started a story and didn’t finish it, but that’s only because the work wasn’t “speaking” to me and I move on to something that will. When I’m committed to a work that doesn’t just speak but screams at me, I write like the wind. I believe that writer’s block happens when the author overthinks their work way too much in the process of writing it, basically letting their mind (the part that overanalyzes things too much) interfere with the flow of creativity and imagination. I don’t let that happen. I stay calm, cool, and write when the inspiration/creativity is there. I don’t force it or overthink things during the process of writing. I don’t worry about word counts either. I just relax, write, and have fun.

Writing, at the end of the day, has to be fun to result to a finished product that I can be proud of. There’s nothing fun about writer’s block or forcing myself to write something that just isn’t speaking at the moment. To prevent that from happening, if I lose momentum and focus while writing a chapter, I just go offline and kill the potential writer’s block by having fun and living life. That’s really the best medicine to prevent writer’s block from happening in the first place. I like to destroy the problem before it manifests into this big deal. It has worked for me so far. I hate stress, and I sure as hell would hate writer’s block, which sounds like the most stressful thing for a writer to go through. What I do helps me. I hope that I’m not alone in doing this and that other writers do the same thing, for one’s health and sanity.

I actually completely agree with you. I don’t think I’ve ever had “writer’s block,” and I practice living life stress free and creatively. But enough about that. What is your editing process? Editing seems to be the bane of a lot of author’s existence, so how do you edit and stay on track?

Editing is not the bane of my existence. I think it’s the best part of the writing process because basically editing is where you are taking this ugly lump of clay, this diamond in the rough, and molding and polishing it into something better and prettier. You can’t do that while you’re actually writing; that can only be done after the work is finished and when you have something to actually work with. So with editing, it gives me that opportunity to really make my work shine. I typically go through three rounds of editing. I take a week off in between each edit round so that way when I return to the manuscript I’m editing it with a fresher pair of eyes and more refreshed state of mind. This helps me stay on track of the process.

This technique of editing—edit, take a week off, edit, take a week off, edit one more time, and take one more week off—makes the process less tedious and more fun, and it helps me to pace myself. I like rewriting areas, expanding on areas, and taking out filler/unnecessary writing that doesn’t add to the narrative. I like being given more than two chances to make my work better. Editing gives me the chance to make my work better as many times as I choose until it’s polished to the best of my ability before it is in the hands of a professional editor.  I find the whole process (self-editing and editing with a professional) exciting. As long as I keep it this way, editing for me is more fun than it is a burden.

Interesting. Would you mind sharing some of your ups and some of your downs about writing and about publishing? Any advice to new and upcoming authors?

The ups of writing and publishing is of course when you’ve created a work that you are proud of. Even better is when it finds a home with a publisher. The natural high of getting a work published, there are no words. It’s all the more thrilling, and sometimes surreal, when others enjoy your work for days, months, and who knows, maybe years to come. Most would say that the downs of writing and publishing would be getting a rejection email/letter. Yeah, that can sting a little, but I never bothered with dwelling on that negative side of publishing. I’ve had a few rejection emails, had two of my publishers go out of business, and had some not so nice comments about my work. I could have moped and vented about it, but that was far from my mind. What good would that have done? I’m not a fan of misery; I really just don’t have the time or care for it.

Every negative in book publishing can always be turned into something positive. That is, if you want it to be. I chose to look on the positive side of things and to just continue doing what I do.  The greatest thing about publishing that can’t always be said about most things in life is that a negative can always be turned into a positive. There are so many publishers out there that there’s no reason for one rejection letter to bring someone down; solution: just send out the manuscript/short story somewhere else. Publishers go out of business; don’t worry, your work will find a new home soon enough. Bad reviews/negative comments? If you’re entitled to write one and have one, so can other people. Not everyone is going to like my work. Whatever. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Live and let live; life’s too short to dwell on the negativity.

My only advice to new and upcoming authors is to not take yourself, or the publishing industry, too seriously. And don’t take anything too personal either. All the downs I mentioned above that I’ve experienced, if you go through all that too, remember, it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Sometimes, the negatives and even the rejection letters/emails can be blessings in disguise, for something better could come along. All the ups of getting published—being published, selling tons of books and gaining a huge readership/fan-base—don’t let it all get to your head and make it big. Nobody wants to support the work of an egotistical/cocky author. Be heard and be successful, but stay humble. Don’t compare yourself with other authors/writers. Unless you are still in high school that kind of drama is unnecessary. No matter what ups and downs you go through with writing and getting published, just stay cool, don’t lose yourself, be classy, and most importantly, keep on writing.

Great advice! Here’s a more serious question. What is it like to write in the LGBT realm of craziness that we all support? What’s it like to dip the toe into the rainbow through writing and publishing?

Thankfully, we live in a day and age where LGBT literature, and LGBT issues as a whole, is more accepted and open for discussion and expression than it was years ago. That’s the beauty of writing in this genre for me. It opens a world of opportunities for creativity, breaking boundaries, and challenging the way people perceive the LGBT genre. It also opens a huge comfort level in discussing LGBT issues that matter. For me personally, the LGBT genre is the easiest and most fun way for me to express myself. To have people out there who are as passionate about this “LGBT realm of craziness” and who love reading/writing in this genre as much as I do—that is even more beautiful. The genre lets everyone know that no matter if you are gay, bisexual, transgender, or lesbian, nobody out there is really alone anymore. I can really only sum up the experience of writing in this genre in that one word: beautiful. Oh, and delicious. Who doesn’t want to taste the rainbow? Those who don’t just aren’t fabulous enough to enjoy it for what it is ;).

LOL! What is your best memory from the whole writing and publishing process?

My best memory was when one of my readers commented about my F/F short story, “Stella Loves Bella.” At the time it was published on oysters&chocolate.com (you can now find it in Cleis Press’s Best Lesbian Erotica 2013). This sweet reader said in the comment section that the main character in that story (“Stella”) reminded her of her girlfriend, and that the story as a whole encouraged her to work up the courage to be her girlfriend’s “Bella.” That comment made me smile. It still does five years later. I’ll never forget it.

Storm Moon Press will be publishing The Man on Top of the World when it’s ready for our eyes. I was wondering if you would be able to tell me a bit about your experience with them; I’ll actually be meeting them at Rainbow Con in April.

I’m still a fairly new writer with them, but so far, Storm Moon Press is one of the most helpful and fun publishers I’ve worked with. One of the reasons why I was attracted to this publisher is because of how they like to publish unique niches in erotica that other publishers rarely take on, like blood play, gun kink, and incest. And they’re open to publishing works that feature trans*, poly, bisexual, asexual, and intersex characters. Not that other publishers out there wouldn’t support any of that, but Storm Moon Press stands out in that they are more proud and open about publishing works that represent all that and more.

They are also very author-centric too. If you are contracted by them, they’ll allow you to re-work your manuscript before the hardcore editing process begins. With The Man on Top of the World, that was so needed since so many things had to be fixed and expanded.  I’m especially grateful and appreciative of Storm Moon Press for wanting to take “The Man on Top of the World” and have it become the novel that it is now.  They are a great press, and the founders/co-founders are especially amazing. Have fun at Rainbow Con! I hope you will adore the Storm Moon Press crew as much as I do.

I’m sure I will! I know that you do a lot of reviews on your blog and that you give a lot of promotion to other authors. What prompted you to do this?

I’ve been reviewing movies and sex toys for a professional company for years, so I guess naturally, I’d eventually take on the fun task of reviewing erotica/romance fiction too. Except independently (and for free) on my blog. I started reading/reviewing books on my blog from Storm Moon Press first. Then, last fall of 2013, I thought to myself, hmm, I’d love to read/review erotica/romance fiction from authors outside of Storm Moon Press as long as they give me a free copy of their work in exchange for an honest review from me.

I love reading/reviewing LGBT erotica/romance fiction—that was the first prompt. The second is that I do enjoy seeing what kind of talent is out there in this genre from authors I haven’t heard of. So far, it’s been a real pleasure doing that for these authors who need some more exposure and whose work deserves more attention. By doing reviews on my blog, it’s a win-win for everyone. I get to read/review a lot of free e-book copies of LGBT erotica/romance fiction. These reviews give my blog some exposure. On a few occasions, I’ve made new friends with these fellow authors. The authors get the free promotion from me, and if the review is a positive one, they could use that review to promote themselves. If my review(s) encourage readers to check out their books, then that’s the greatest win. I get immense joy out of doing book reviews on my blog, and I hope the authors and readers enjoy it too.

Why focus on the LGBT genre? What are the plusses and what are the minuses of doing so?

As an intersex woman who identifies as pansexual, I don’t think I could ever stray from this genre even if I tried. I have many friends on and offline who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered. I’ve dated lesbian, bisexual, and trans* people throughout my life, still do. The issues I deal with as an intersex individual can only be understood by another intersex person or by a trans-individual (even better when I’ve found a friend who is intersex and trans. Thankfully, I have that, and she so gets me and I get her). Not that my life is all about LGBT 24/7, but it’s important and personal enough for me to dedicate much of my time on it on a regular daily basis be it through my writing, book reviewing, and watching LGBT-related films. It’s not a hobby; it’s my passion. I don’t see any minuses in focusing on that.

The pluses about the genre is that it allows me the ultimate freedom to be myself. And the genre also helps me, and others, further understand and appreciate the many ways of how we all identify and express ourselves in and outside of the genre and the dizzying number of labels that go with it. The minuses of it are not so much the negative stigma or judgment others might feel about it. Like, I don’t care about people who are turned off by it; it’s none of my business how or what they think of me and the genre I write in. There are assholes out there, that’s just life, I can only live mine. The minuses I notice are when I see that the representations of LGBT characters in the LGBT erotica/romance fiction genre aren’t varied and rely on far too many tropes, clichés, and stereotypes that don’t challenge the reader and are only giving the same ol’.  Other than that, all I see is pluses in the LGBT genre. And lots of rainbows.

QUICKIES!

1. Dog or Cat? Cat.
2. Favorite color?
Fuchsia.
3. Favorite junk food?
Chocolate chip cookies.   
4. Favorite musician?
Björk.
5. Favorite curse word?
Fuck.
6. Favorite quote?
“When the going gets tough, the tough reinvent.”—Rupaul
7. Rolaids or Tums?
Rolaids.
8. Short or Tall?
Short
9. Favorite body part?
Boobs
10. Favorite holiday?
New Year’s Eve

Books

images Best Lesbian Erotica 2013 is about the trembling pleasure of anticipation as much as the moment when sex actually happens. Curated by Lammy nominee, Kathleen Warnock, Best Lesbian Erotica 2013 is as diverse as it is delectable- unlikely pairings appear as do sizzling hot one-time encounters and well-developed characters in well-developed relationships. Lesbians meet, sometimes fall in love, have a break up or two but always have lots of intensely great sex. Raw, romantic and always unforgettable, Best Lesbian Erotica 2013 will test your erotic boundaries and take you over the edge and into a world where fantasies become reality. Lesbian literary icon Jewelle Gomez (The Gilda Stories) returns to the series she helped put at the forefront of erotica. Gomez, who selected the stories for the 1997 edition of Best Lesbian Erotica, has returned once again to pluck the jewels of the best lesbian erotica around. In the words of editor Kathleen Warnock, “expect the unexpected.” In “Cucumbers & Cream,” by Helen Sandler, a butch finds herself hosting a burlesque show…not that she minds at all!Sometimes you just want a stranger pushing you up against a fence, as in “Anonymous,” by BD Swain.When one butch with a smartphone spots another, it might be a momentous “Morning Commute” by Penny Gyokeres.

GDP002-FemmeFatale_30

In Femme Fatale, an erotic collection edited by Lana Fox, dangerous women hunt down their deepest desires with everything from guns to wordplay. From a brazen thief who seduces her marks, to the ardent lover of a serial killer, these femme fatales are smart, inventive, and hard to trick.

But as Fox reminds us, women who are viewed as dangerous often challenge society’s thinking, and in this collection, the femme fatales certainly transform the worlds they inhabit. As is always the case with Go Deeper Press, these writers excel at storytelling as much as they do at sexy scenes, so get ready to be erotically and mentally engrossed.
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