Thursday, August 28, 2014

Blog Tour for Steven's Heart

Hello! This is Ashavan Doyon and I'm here to talk a little bit about Steven's Heart.

Steven's Heart follows up on the events of Loving Aidan, my first Torquere release. (WHAT! You haven't bought it yet? hmmm. I see. Well this is easily solved. Go here and pick it up while it's 20% off. You won't be disappointed, though you may just want to see more of Steven. In fact I'm pretty sure you will want to see more of him, which would be why I wrote a whole book that's just Steven.)

So, now that you have your copy of Loving Aidan (you bought it, right? I know you did!), we can talk a bit about Steven's Heart. Steven was a really interesting character. He started as just a kind of cocky idea. Someone that stirred Aidan up and maybe would serve in some way to make Sammy jealous. And he does, but he also became something a lot more than that. I love it when that happens with characters, and while I'd love to see readers attach to Aidan and Sammy more, it was clear to me pretty quickly that everyone who read Loving Aidan wanted more of Steven.

And this is it. A whole book of Steven. From angsty to loving to brave, Steven really takes shape and becomes something special in Steven's Heart. I had a great deal of fun writing this character and learning all the mystery pieces. I think my subconscious must have loved Steven a lot, because looking back, there's a whole lot of things I set up that I had no idea I was setting up at the time. And because of that, we end up with a rich complicated character.

Steven starts the book torn up and spit out. I know a lot of readers were angry about that in Loving Aidan (and if they knew! They should have seen him hurting in the original drafts. Honestly it was much worse). We get to see it more honestly and completely here. And it's good, because that sort of loss should be hard. But it puts Steven in this place where he needs to understand, and to talk to someone who understands, and that creates some wonderful tension with the character of Michael. Steven has this completely captive audience, because Michael is in the hospital, incapacitated, unable to even see Steven because his face is bandaged up. But they start in this very tentative place of loss where they actually completely understand each other. Maybe they're the only two who can.

Of course there's drama, and Sammy and Aidan are still in the picture and there's more of Sarah, and for those of you who have read Loving Aidan, you know Sarah has all sorts of reasons to be upset with Steven. Writing Aidan was really interesting in the first book because Aidan is so carefully projected. Steven is very different, he's very much just who he is, but he's keeping secrets. And that's finally coming back to bite him, first with Sarah, and later in Steven's Heart with Michael.

No, I'm not saying what the secrets are. I think some readers will figure it out and others will be surprised, and I think that's good. But it's a fun surprise and I think it makes Steven a lot more human when we find out.

So, you want to buy it right? Of course you do. Blond, blue-eyed hunk searching for love? Lots to like. You can buy Steven's Heart here. You want more information? All right. I'm going to give you tons. But not all at once. At the end of this post there will be a proper blurb for the story. And maybe a link to an excerpt at Torquere. But before that, I want to talk to you about where I'll be, because I'm doing a blog tour and there will be LOTS of fun information about the story, my process, and about me, frankly. Also plenty about Steven.

Blog Tour info:
The tour kicks off tomorrow 8/29. Why tomorrow? My wires got crossed and there was a typo on my marketing form, so I thought the book released Friday. Which was silly, because Torquere always releases on Wednesdays, and if I'd been thinking I'd have remembered that.

8/29 Love Bytes Same Sex Romance Reviews
I'll be doing a lovely interview for Dani, the blog owner, about Steven's Heart.

8/30 Prism Book Alliance
I love books, and I'll be talking a little bit in my post about Steven's Heart, but also about books that influenced me.

8/31 Andrew Q. Gordon
Andrew is the author of Purpose, and was one of the first authors I met in the genre in a chat promoting his book. He's graciously agreed to host me.

9/1 The blog that must not be named (I really hope that's not ACTUALLY the name of a blog)
The mystery blog will be announced on my author facebook page soon. I'll be making an event for the blog tour as soon as I can breathe again.

9/2 The Kimi-Chan experience
I'll be discussing honesty in relationships in a guest post. This is actually very topical for Steven's character in particular, I think.

9/3 The Blogger Girls
This will be a spotlight and review post by Nikyta, the reviewer who originally reviewed Loving Aidan for the Blog of Sid Love (now Love Bytes). She liked Loving Aidan, so I have high hopes!

9/4 Gay. Guy. Reading. And Friends
A review and guest post about my journey into the genre of M/M romance.

9/5 Joyfully Jay
There will be an excerpt. And a guest post. And you won't see that excerpt anywhere else. Promise.

9/6 Rainbow Gold Reviews
I'm supposed to talk about something of particular interest to me. I'll probably decide after I write the other guest posts, because I don't want to overlap a lot, if that makes sense. But it should be interesting... I get rather passionate about things.

9/7 The Novel Approach
Discussion of second chance at love stories and how Steven's Heart fits into that idea.

I know, it's a LOT. Only half of them are written, so I've got a lot of writing to do in the next few days. I hope you all enjoy it. Steven's Heart is a great book. Before I forget... the blurb:

When a love triangle breaks, Steven Everett is left alone to grieve over a boyfriend lost to someone else. Surrounded by friends too tied to Aidan's new lover to give advice, Steven turns instead to a broken and beaten man, Aidan's other ex, Michael Rossier, who also knows the pain of having loved and lost Aidan. Steven's and Michael's confessions grow deeper, each confiding in the other until neither can deny an attraction. But being with Michael feels like cheating, and Steven isn't sure what to do. The connection get stronger every day, and Steven realizes he's facing an impossible choice.
To make a relationship with Michael work, Steven needs to make peace with Michael's troubled past. Even more terrifying, he'll have to tell Michael the secret he's never told anyone, not even Aidan. With Michael recovering from yet another surgery, Steven leaves to face the ghosts of the past. He has to be certain. This time, Steven knows, the decision means revealing the secrets of his heart and hoping their fragile feelings can survive.

Still want an excerpt? Find the full excerpt on Torquere's site.

Buy Steven's Heart now!

More information about the blog tour will be on my author page on facebook:
www.facebook.com/ashavandoyon.writer

And there will be a giveaway. For real. I'm even sending someone a signed copy of Loving Aidan (only US addresses though, sorry).

So I hope you heard something interesting about Steven's Heart -- there will be more over the next several days, I promise. Here's a special glimpse of a scene that didn't make it into the book.

You can always find me on facebook or on my website at www.ashavandoyon.com

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Author Extra: Steven's Heart by Ashavan Doyon

Steven's Heart
By Ashavan Doyon

When a love triangle breaks, Steven Everett is left alone to grieve over a boyfriend lost to someone else. Surrounded by friends too tied to Aidan's new lover to give advice, Steven turns instead to a broken and beaten man, Aidan's other ex, Michael Rossier, who also knows the pain of having loved and lost Aidan. Steven's and Michael's confessions grow deeper, each confiding in the other until neither can deny an attraction. But being with Michael feels like cheating, and Steven isn't sure what to do. The connection get stronger every day, and Steven realizes he's facing an impossible choice.

To make a relationship with Michael work, Steven needs to make peace with Michael's troubled past. Even more terrifying, he'll have to tell Michael the secret he's never told anyone, not even Aidan. With Michael recovering from yet another surgery, Steven leaves to face the ghosts of the past. He has to be certain. This time, Steven knows, the decision means revealing the secrets of his heart and hoping their fragile feelings can survive.

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=96&products_id=4263


Author Extra:

This bonus scene happens between chapters 4 and 5.

Steven watched from the hall. He didn't dare go in. Not with Sammy inside, holding Aidan's hand tight, oblivious to the tortured man staring at them through the window. Steven worked a bit of his bottom lip against his teeth and shut his eyes tight.

"His prognosis is better than Michael's," whispered a voice from just behind his left elbow. Addy's voice.

Steven nodded, swallowing hard. She was right. Aidan was going to be okay. Which meant Steven didn't really have a reason to watch. Except that he did. A reason that made Sammy sitting there with Aidan feel like someone had shoved a hot poker through Steven's heart. He turned his head rather deliberately from the window before opening his eyes.

"Hard to see them like that?" asked Addy.

Steven grunted an answer that might have had words. Even Steven couldn't be sure what they were supposed to be. He stared down the length of hall. Monitors and chairs and carts, even beds clustered against the walls. Somehow those details were easier to think about.

Addy touched his elbow lightly.

"You're very confused, aren't you?" asked Addy.

Steven glanced down at her. Adrienne Rossier was dressed, primly, professionally. She was always dressed like that. Knee length gray skirt, professional jacket, low cut but not too low, and the obligatory strand of pearls. It made her eyes sparkle and stand out. Did Michael's stand out that way? Were they the same brilliant mix of blue and green? Steven wanted to know and it wasn't just confusing. Steven let out a heaving breath, slowly, trying to imagine himself on the water. He glanced at Aidan's door, and then back down the hall toward where he knew Michael was waiting for him.

"It's too soon," he whispered, so soft he was surprised when Addy responded.

"Mika likes you." She managed a smile. "Rather a lot, I think."

Steven didn't look at her, his gaze was still fixed at the end of the hall. "You're leaving, aren't you?"

"He has you. The doctors agree. Right now, you're helping him more than I am."

"They won't--"

"It's all arranged. The doctors and nurses have word. You, and Aidan if he wakes up. But it's mostly going to be you." Addy's grip was strong as she grabbed his arm and turned him. "You take care of him." Her cheek was glistening in a trail from the outer edge of her eye down her cheek.

Steven looked over her head at Aidan's door and then back down the hall. His gut started to twist, whether over Aidan or Michael he couldn't be sure. Probably both. That would be about right for him. He thought about Michael for a moment. Bits of black hair sticking out from tight bandages. Pale skin bruised to almost black. Long fingers. Fingers that felt so right in his hand and so good when they squeezed his.

"What if it gets serious?" asked Steven, brutally pushing aside the feelings that wanted to erupt as a tear formed in his eye. Feelings about Aidan. He couldn't have Aidan. He'd never have Aidan again. Aidan chose someone else.


Addy seized his chin, and forced him to look at her. "I'd love that," she said. Then she patted him lightly on the cheek and slowly walked away, her heels clicking against the tile with every step.

New Releases are here!!!

This week, we have selected titles from Ashavan Doyon and Katalinya Palokova on sale for 20% off! Check 'em out here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=specials

Steven's Heart
by Ashavan Doyon
334 pages / 88600 words 
ISBN: 978-1-61040-797-7
$7.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=97&products_id=4263
Blurb:
When a love triangle breaks, Steven Everett is left alone to grieve over a boyfriend lost to someone else. Surrounded by friends too tied to Aidan's new lover to give advice, Steven turns instead to a broken and beaten man, Aidan's other ex, Michael Rossier, who also knows the pain of having loved and lost Aidan. Steven's and Michael's confessions grow deeper, each confiding in the other until neither can deny an attraction. But being with Michael feels like cheating, and Steven isn't sure what to do. The connection get stronger every day, and Steven realizes he's facing an impossible choice.
To make a relationship with Michael work, Steven needs to make peace with Michael's troubled past. Even more terrifying, he'll have to tell Michael the secret he's never told anyone, not even Aidan. With Michael recovering from yet another surgery, Steven leaves to face the ghosts of the past. He has to be certain. This time, Steven knows, the decision means revealing the secrets of his heart and hoping their fragile feelings can survive.

The Stonechild Betrothal
by Katalinya Palokova
65 pages / 20400 words 
ISBN: 978-1-61040-798-4
$3.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=78_85&products_id=4264
Blurb:
Estli is a professional bodyguard and fighter for hire who stumbles on a job that looks like easy money: escort a cursed magician named Maurin Stonechild from a remote mountain village to the bustling town of Plains City to investigate an offer of arranged marriage. Complications begin right away, of course. Maurin's curse is the stuff of legend. He is one of twelve people, referred to as the stone children, who were cursed at birth to carry a physical manifestation of their birthstone on their bodies. The stones give them enhanced but dangerous magical abilities, and many of them are feared and living in seclusion.
Maurin's identity alone would be enough to make Estli think twice about the job, but the identity of the man Maurin has been asked to marry is even more startling. Riven Glassweaver is an infamous underworld fixture with a reputation for acquiring powerful magical artifacts. Like, say, amethyst crystals harvested from the skin of a magician or, worse yet, the magician himself. Eventually convinced to take the job because he is unwilling to leave it to less capable hands, Estli runs across one final complication: Maurin is exactly his type, and the feeling is mutual.
Coming Next Week...

Herc's Mercs: Line in the Sand
by Ari McKay
Movie star Jon Baldwin knows being attracted to his bodyguard is the ultimate clich̩. But when he and Alec Davis are trapped together in a flash flood, struggling to stay alive, he realizes he wants to spend the rest of his life with Alec Рno matter how short a time that might be.

Genre: Contemporary/Action-Adventure
Ordinary Heroes, Four Drew Zachary stories
by Drew Zachary

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

On sale this week...

This week, we have selected titles from Ashavan Doyon and Katalinya Palokova on sale for 20% off! Check 'em out here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=specials

Monday, August 25, 2014

BDSMonday - Character Interview With Liam From Night Out



It's BDSMonday!

I was tagged to do a character interview by Elyzabeth M. VaLey. When I signed up for it, I thought I would be posting an interview with one of her characters...but I was mistaken. Seeing as it's a Monday, I decided to hit two subs with one flogger (*heh*) and interview Liam from the kinky story I have out right now, Night Out. So, without further ado, it's my great pleasure to introduce...Liam!

(This interview is mildly spoiler-y if you haven't read Night Out)





Q: How long have you and Jason been together?
A: We've been dating for three years, and we moved in together about...nine months ago. We met through a mutual friend and really hit it off. I've never eaten so well in my life. I have no idea how I survived before I met him, how I didn't starve to death.

Q: When did you 'come out' to Jason as kinky?
A: I think it was after our second or third date. We were at his house. He'd cooked us dinner--pasta, I don't remember what he called it, but it had red sauce and it was amazing--and we'd shared a bottle of wine. We definitely weren't drunk, but we weren't exactly sober either. He'd lit some candles. All the lights were off and we were sitting on his couch, listening to music. I don't remember what I said, but he playfully grabbed my wrist. And...well, I liked it. And it was pretty obvious that I liked it. So he grabbed my other wrist, and things...went from there! I never really had to say it out loud, we just figured it out together.

Q: Who makes most of the decisions for the two of you?
A: Definitely Jason! He's very particular and he likes things a certain way. Most of the time I'm not bothered by his systems, so it's not a source of conflict between us. If you mean in the bedroom...I'd say I'm slightly more of a bottom, both sexually and...kinkily? But we both switch.

Q: Were you interested in BDSM before you met Jason?
A: Yeah, I was. I hadn't felt comfortable enough with anyone I was dating before him to try anything really kinky, but I always feel completely safe with Jason. We haven't done anything really "hard core" and we're taking it slowly, but I've been able to tell him all of my fantasies, and he's told me all of his. We've tried a few of them. Some have been amazing, others...well, they're better as fantasies!

Q: What kinky activity did you want to try most?
A: I don't know if it counts, but the thought of fisting has always really turned me on. When I actually tried it, though, I found out it really wasn't my thing. I've always been curious about bondage, and that I like! I'm not sure I was quite ready for Jason's Valentine's surprise, and it's not something I would have asked for, but I can't deny that I had an amazing time.

Q: Where do you think he'll take you next year?
A: I have no idea. He works from home, so he has lots of time alone to think of all sorts of amazing, fiendish plans. It'll probably push my comfort zone a little, because that's how he is, but I trust him to come up with something mindblowing.

Coming This Week

Coming This Week...
The Stonechild Betrothal
by Katalinya Palokova
As a professional bodyguard in a magical city, Estli has survived a lot of close calls, but he's never fallen in love with a client, thwarted an ancient curse, and challenged an evil magician to a fistfight all in the same week. There's a first time for everything, right?

Genre: Fantasy
Steven's Heart
by Ashavan Doyon
Bonding over the loss of your first love with his ex shouldn't be soothing. It certainly shouldn't make the heart flutter. But it makes Steven's heart race.
Genre: Contemporary, Drama

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Night of the Jackal





Do you remember what movie first made you jump? For me, it was the classic and B-rated monster movies. As a child I would watch Scream- In with Dr. Shock, a horror host in the Philadelphia area. I loved all the old black-and-white monsters such as Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, and The Creature from the Black Lagoon. My favorite, even as a child, was Lon Chaney Jr. as The Werewolf. I`m not sure what drew me to that character so powerfully, but to this day I have a soft spot for shapeshifters.

When I saw the call for submission for Dawg Days, I knew I had to pen a tale to submit. I already have one shifter book on the market, An Erie Halloween, from Torquere Press. Another in the series, An Erie Operetta, will be released in early 2015. For this anthology I wanted to do something a bit different but wasn`t sure what. Then I stumbled across some Kurdish folk music while looking for a music prompt to share with my local writers group. And there it was. The answer to what I would submit. With that beautiful music as inspiration, I crafted an M/M fantasy short story called Night of the Jackal about two jackal shifters on a world far different than ours.




Blurb: Sahl and Jasim are outcasts. Alone on a world covered with shifting sands, the two males live and love day by day, eking out an existence. One night, hunger drives Jasim, the largest of the two jackal shifters, into recklessness. Leaving Sahl behind, Jasim crosses the river in the hopes of stealing food from a resting caravan.

It is Sahl that relays the story of this night. Of how he, the weaker of the pair, must face many dangers to locate, and hopefully free, his lover from a terrible fate. Can Sahl find his mate in time, or will both males end up as new pelts upon the Madr Pash drying racks?





Excerpt:

            I groom myself as I wait, seated under the cool gaze of the moon sisters. I clean my snout with my paw as a slow drum beat erupts from the Madr camp. I am not aware of when our kind left the other humans. We know hatred from the non-skin wearers caused us to move into the desert. That is all we know of it. That slight has never been forgiven. The travelling bands use us as a means to frighten their children, telling them sand jackals will carry them off if they wander from camp. I have never stolen a child. I have found their small bones in the sands and gnawed upon them, for the core is tasty. This caravan is known as Madr Pash. They are famed for being great hunters. My stomach rumbles. Oh, what I would give for a fish! A large red one such as we see rising to the surface of the river when the sun brothers kiss the moon sisters in greeting.

            A shout from the Madr camp startles me. My head jerks to the side. The sound was quick, sharp, but still it lingers in the wide width of my pointed ears. I shoot to my paws. Jasim! A loud hoot bounces over the silver sands. A dark fear overtakes my heartbeat. I shake the dread away. Jasim needs my help. Even if I am the smaller one in size, I am just as stalwart as Jasim. I jump from the rock to the craggy riverbed. The going is slow, difficult. My paws slip into between the smooth, wet rocks. Across the river, voices rise in song. Clapping erupts. I pick my way along, wincing when a claw is bent backward. The moon sisters are fat. They guide me.

*~*




Author Bio:

            V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers,  comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a steer named after a famous N.H.L. goalie,  a pig named after a famous President, and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.

            When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania, fresh cup of java in hand.

I love to meet new friends and fans! You can find me at-



More V.L. Locey Torquere Press books:

Two Guys Walk Into An Apocalypse (Part of the He Loves Me For My Brainssss anthology), Two Guys Walk Into An Apocalypse 2:It Came From Birmingham, Love of the Hunter, Goaltender`s Penalty, All I Want for Christmas, Every Sunday at One (Part of the 2013 Charity Sip Anthology).

And coming soon . . .Two Guys Walk Into An Apocalypse 3:He`s A Lumberjack And He`s Undead and Early To Rise - A Toms & Tabbies Tale.




Friday, August 22, 2014

My Zombie Boyfriend - First Sneak Peek!




Here it is, My Zombie Boyfriend's first teaser!

Edward is a necromancer/medical student. Boo is his cat...and the first zombie he ever made.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Paddling Meditation

Yesterday my splendid stepdad and I went for a paddle on the Ware River. I live in a little central New England village and we’re fortunate to be able to shove our kayaks into his pick-up and drive less than ten minutes to a winding little river. Yesterday we paddled for about an hour and a half, over beaver lodges and around bend after bend. The views are intimate and ungroomed, and I got stuck once in a shallow patch (it is the down side of August and here in my part of the northern hemisphere that means warmish and dryish). We saw a blue heron, a hawk, a couple of charming ducks (I confess I still have my city-kid perspective on wildlife). Dragonflies hitched rides (some of them were hitched to each other, naughty little things). I think there was a woodpecker (or maybe a lumberjack). Very groovy afternoon on the water.
Ware River
Because my stepdad is a stronger paddler than I am, he moved ahead for a while and I felt like I had the river to myself. There I was, sitting in a blue plastic boat, wearing my 50 SPF sunscreen and progressive-lens sunglasses and still somehow felt like it was a thousand years ago. I couldn’t hear the road anymore and I could totally manufacture denial about the contrail above my head. I got into that awesome zone of a really great creative session, or those few times recently I’ve been able to meditate. I kind of suck at quieting my mind, but it’s something I’ve been working on. It got me thinking about the idea of walking meditation. Was I doing paddling meditation? Whatever it was, I want to go again tomorrow!
Photo by Skip Brown

Check out my latest release, the second edition of my 1970s romp HAVEN and its fabulous new cover by BSClay. If I mention that Torquere has a coupon you could use, would you think I’m a mercenary? (Use code HOWL at http://torquerebooks.com through Sunday!)

Click to view product page


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Author Extra: Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas by Tray Ellis

Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas
By Tray Ellis

TJ has been spending his summer learning how to manage the family hardware store.  He expects another ordinary work day when he stumbles into a brawl involving Arlo, a frequent customer he’s been flirting with. If TJ survives this fight, he wants an explanation, and it should start with where the extra-smart dog came from.

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_93&products_id=4254


Author Extra: 

Arlo practiced the various canine forms with no small amount of effort.

Sometimes, in the hot summer nights, when the air was sticky and sultry, he would creep from bed and prowl the grounds. Night at the end of their dead-end block was inky with shadows and very few stars penetrated the city’s miasma of light pollution.  Still too dark for his human vision, he preferred to patrol as a dog. The color spectrum dropped away into browns, yellows, blues, and grays, but his night vision improved incredibly.  His hearing ability amplified as well and there were no adequate words to describe how saturated with smells the world became. Everything changed when he shifted, right down to the feel of the ground beneath the pads of his paws. 

Arlo paced along one side of the house, comfortably trotting in the skin of a Chihuahua, the easiest shape he maintained. As he rounded the corner, he strained for a moment, concentrating to enlarge his build, until he filled out into the body of a miniature schnauzer. At the next corner he shifted again, struggling briefly to acquire the form of a beagle.  For the last length of the house, he determinedly garnered his willpower and shifted up into a powerful German shepherd.  Satisfied, he loped around the house again, steadily keeping the form.

While the rest of his family paraded as Airedales and Dobermans, easily bulking up -- or at least puffing out if impressive size was more attainable than actual density -- Arlo’s skills tended to the other end.  Packing away, or folding up, the layers of existence was easily done, until he became something small, dense, and ferocious.

His father claimed it was a rare talent.  Though impressive and something the others struggled with even achieving, Arlo strived to acquire the skills he didn't have and never stopped training. Fighting off the enemies meant being larger, tougher, and more massive.  His innate aptitude lent itself to other purposes, important ones like thieving and reconnaissance, but certainly not to the main mission of being big enough and scary enough to protect the talisman.

Arlo finished the circuit and paused.  He sniffed the air.  A familiar scent, welcome and not unexpected, drifted in the humidity.

“I missed you. Are you coming back to bed?” TJ asked.  Clad in only a pair of well-worn boxers he yawned as he peered into the night.  


Arlo returned to his own shape, filling out the length of his body, grateful to cease exerting effort and comfortable within his human form as he could never truly be as a canine.  “Yes.”  There would be many other nights to practice, but he had already spent enough of this one away from his new beau.

Author Extra: Packbond by M. Lee

Packbond
By M. Lee

"Packbond" is the love story of Alex, the friendly Shifter boy-next-door who everyone knows and likes, and a mysterious stranger. Troy is a strong, handsome, kind alpha, everything Alex ever dreamed of. Troy appearing on his doorstep with his betas, asking for Shifter sanctuary, seemed almost too good to be true.
Troy would never do anything to bring danger to his pack but he was not always so careful. Once, their pack had a fourth member. When someone with painful links to the past arrives, can Troy keep his pack and his love safe?

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_93&products_id=4255



Author Extra:

Alex woke in the middle of the night. He was freezing cold. The house was hard to heat in winter. Even when the heat was on high, something about being a Shifter tuned them to the cold outside. Winter always hit hard.

Shivering, he curled into a ball and pulled the covers tight around him. Three layers of blankets should have been too much in Oregon's mild winters, yet Alex could still feel the cold. It was sinking into his bones.

He stumbled to his feet. He had the panicked sense that winter was alive, a malevolent force trying to swallow him whole. It would take everything he needed, everything he loved. Alex forced himself to move. He took several deep breaths. He wrapped a blanket around himself and went into the hall.

As he'd half expected, Troy's door was propped open. Everyone else had their doors shut up tight to try to keep the heat in. Alex stared hungrily at Troy's door. He walked closer as quietly as he could and paused at the threshold. He could smell Troy from here and hear the soft sound of his breathing. Maybe that would be enough.

Troy sighed in his sleep and turned over. Then he made a complaining noise. Contrite, Alex crossed to him quickly. His scent must be waking Troy. He sat on the side of the bed and put a hand on Troy's arm.

"Shh," he whispered into the dark. "I'm here."

Troy settled again. Alex bit his lip. A helpless rush of adoration bubbled in his chest. He stroked slowly down Troy's arm. Without thinking too hard, he tipped forward and crawled under the blankets next to Troy. Troy's bed felt a thousand times warmer. Or maybe that was just Troy. Some sort of body heat superpowers. Troy smelled fantastic, like banked coals and baking bread, sleep and safety and home. Alex quested closer, wanting to bury himself in Troy's scent.

"Hmm? Hey." Troy sounded sleepy. His hand came up to run up and down Alex's back. "Hey, there." There was a soft note of surprise and pleasure under the roughness of sleep.

Alex hadn't meant to wake Troy. He'd just needed... something. He pressed his face into Troy's shoulder so he wouldn't have to look at Troy.

"Hi." Alex didn't say anything else for a long moment, soaking in the warmth of Troy's hand in his back. "Woke up freezing," he said at last. No Shifter really needed to say more than that. They all understood winter and its fears.

Troy pulled him protectively closer. "Glad you came and got me, then."

Alex sighed, feeling some of the clenched fear leave him. Heat seeped into him wherever he and Troy touched. He wriggled until they were lying pressed together. That was better. Sleep tugged at him.

"Yeah," Alex said at last.

Troy pressed a kiss to the top of Alex's head. "I've got you," he said.

Alex shivered, one full body shake, releasing the rest of the tension he had been holding onto. Turning his head into Troy's neck, Alex let the sound and scent and heat carry him to sleep. 

Author Extra: Raising Cain by Winnie Jerome

Raising Cane
By Winnie Jerome

Blake is a gamer frustrated with the dryness of the boyfriend pool. Finding someone who's gay and a huge role-playing geek is about as easy as rolling three critical hits in a row.
His dreams seem to come true when he meets Cain -- a hotter-than-hell bonafide gamer. Sparks fly between them, but Cain is hiding something from Blake, something even worse than liking the character creation phase in Rolemaster.

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_93&products_id=4258


Author Extra: 

Here's an extended version of the beginning of the game that Blake's in:

Steve began to set the scene for the game. “Your characters wake up manacled in a windowless room. Each of you has metal cuffs secured by a padlock on to your wrists and a length of chain running from your restraints holds you to the wall. You can't remember anything about yourself, not even your name. I'm going to go around the table and I want each of you to read off the description on your character sheet.”

Cain said, “My character is a fair-haired elf dressed in light traveling leathers. His hair cascades down to his shoulders and he appears to be weaponless.”

Blake said, “Steve, do we even remember what an elf is?”

Steve nodded. Blake said, “My character is a very muscular, tall woman dressed in chain mail and a cloak secured with a brooch. She has very short hair and has a proud air about her.”

The rest of the party read off their descriptions and then Steve said, “What do you want to do next?”

“I'd like to try getting out of these fuckers,” Blake said. “I yank as hard as I can. Does anything happen?”

He heard Steve rolling a die behind the screen. “Yes, you actually distort one of the links in the chain. You're quite strong.”

“I must be a warrior, then.”

“Very good, my lady,” Cain replied. “I will attempt the same.”

Steve said, “Brute strength doesn't seem to work. You don't bend anything. However, the heavy manacles feel clumsy and loose to you.”

“May I try to contort my body so that I can slip free?” Cain asked.

The bounce of a die sounded. “No problem.”

“I think we have a rogue here,” Gene said.

The rest of the party tried to get free, but they weren't successful, not even the dwarf. This puzzled everyone, since dwarves were primarily warriors. Cain's character patted himself down and found a small length of metal hidden in his hair that could be used as a lock-pick. While he freed the rest of the party, Blake had his warrior practice swinging the chain she had broken. No one appeared to have weapons, so she needed whatever help she could get.

Since it was too confusing to go without names, everyone decided to adopt a random one. Cain named his elf “Elessan”, while Blake named his warrior “Brunhilde”.

The other four prisoners tried to test their limberness, but none of them stood out. Blake wondered if they were spell-casters or just characters with average stats. He glanced at his sheet and looked at the “personality traits” area. The first one listed was “brutally honest”.

Blake said, “Well, the rest of you are pretty wimpy which means you're cannon fodder. I'll take point and Elessan can bring up the rear. Everyone else stays in the middle.”


He tried not to cringe at his modern speech. He always sucked at delivering lines in character, not like Cain.

Author Extra: Photorealism by Julia Talbot

Photorealism 
By Julia Talbot

Nature photographer July is determined to capture a moose in his lens during a trip to Colorado. What he finds instead is a beautiful wolf who seems more than happy to pose for him. Rhys wants July to see him as a man, too, but can he convince July that his shifting abilities are real?

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_93&products_id=4257


Author Extra: 

Grand Mesa is the biggest flat top mountain in the world, covering some 500 square miles. The mesa is traversed by the Grand Mesa Scenic and Historic Byway (which includes SH 65) between the town of Mesa on the north and the town of Cedaredge on the south. The route over the mesa provides a dramatic contrast in landscape, climate and vegetation. On the north side, the road climbs the steep terrain near the Powderhorn Resort ski area. The forested top of the mesa remains snowbound much later in the spring than the surrounding valleys, and is a popular location for cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.

My mom was born and raised in Cedaredge, and when she took my dad, who was from the deep south, up to Grand Mesa the first time, he was really worried about bears. My mom, who knew how freaky dad could be, blithely assured him there were no bears on Grand Mesa. That night, they slept in the camper shell of their small pick-up truck, with the food supply securely locked up front in the passenger area. There was a light rain that night, which kept them from setting up their tent.

When they woke up in the morning, the area around the truck, as well as the windows and top of the camper shell, were covered in muddy bear footprints. Big ones. Too big to be the average black bear you’d meet in Western Colorado.


The upshot of this story is that Dad never trusted Mom on another camping trip, and that you never know what kind of wildlife you’ll meet on Grand Mesa, Colorado.

Author Extra: Search and Rescue by Lorne Rodman

Search and Rescue 
By Lorne Rodman

Shapeshifter Clancy passes for a wolf hybrid and has all the paperwork he needs to be a search and rescue canine. What he doesn’t have anymore is the requisite “handler”. His last lover dumped him, and a dog can’t show up for work alone. When he meets Terry, Clancy knows something is different, maybe perfect, about the man. They can work together, but can they be more?

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_93&products_id=4259

Author Extra:

Search and rescue is a largely volunteer proposition. While some people are professional trainers or multi-regional specialists, most local rescue units are volunteer based. Time commitment is considerable, especially when dogs are involved. Not only does a rescuer need to know how to train their dog, perform basic first aid, and deal with emergencies, they also need to be able to perform first aid and how to care for their dog in wilderness situations. Training centers and groups exist all over the country. If you’re a dog lover, even if not a dog owner, ponder volunteering.

Here are some links!

Sandia Search – New Mexico- http://pages.swcp.com/SSD/

National Search and Rescue – Canine Rescue - http://www.nasar.org/page/34/Canine-Search-and-Rescue

Canine Search Dog Foundation- http://www.searchdogfoundation.org/


Canine Handler Certification - http://www.fema.gov/canine-handler-certification

Author Extra: Tea and Werewolves by Cecil Wilde

Tea and Werewolves
By Cecil Wilde

As soon as Connor walks into Sev's tea shop, Sev knows there's something different about him. It could be his charming smile, his obvious intelligence, or the way he howls at the moon when it's full. Either way, sparks start flying straight away.
Sev and Connor both know there's more to their relationship than simple mutual attraction, and the question of taking the next step is foremost in their minds even as they tumble into bed together for the first time. Will they work things out, or will the suddenness of it all get the better of them?

Available here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_93&products_id=4260


Author Extra: 

Sev's Mint & Ginger Iced Tea Pick-Me-Up

Spent all night chasing rabbits in the forest? Tired, headachey and hungover? If you know it's the full moon tonight or you're in for a long one otherwise, put a batch of this in the fridge in the afternoon and drink it in the morning to cure all your ills.

You Will Need:

3-4 mint & ginger tea bags (or 3-4 scoops of loose leaf tea)
1 bottle white lemonade (1-1.5 liters)
1-2 soluble caffeine tablets (optional)

1 - Gently poke the tea bags, one at a time, into the top of the lemonade bottle so they're floating in it, or carefully pour in the loose leaf tea.
2 - Close the bottle and refrigerate for at least a few hours, preferably overnight.
3 - In the morning, dissolve the caffeine tablets into the bottle (if you're not into caffeinated beverages in the morning, skip this step).

4 - Drink and be healed.

New Paranormal Anthology DAWG DAYS

This week we have selected titles from Julia Talbot, Lorne Rodman, Jae Christopher, Tray Ellis, LJ Hamlin, Winnie Jerome, VL Locey, Rob Rosen, and Mychael Black on sale for 20% off! Check 'em out here:http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=specials

Dawg Days Anthology
edited by Elizabeth L. Brooks with stories from Julia Talbot, Jae Christopher, V.L. Locey, Winnie Jerome, Mychael Black, Cecil Wilde, M. Lee, Tray Ellis, Rob Rosen, L.J. Hamlin and Lorne Rodman
219 pages / 65100 words
ISBN: 978-1-61040-796-0
$6.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=76&products_id=4251
Blurb:
In "Photorealism" by Julia Talbot, nature photographer July has no idea the wolf he's obsessed with is also a man. In "Black, One Sugar" by Jae Christopher, David blurts out a secret over his morning coffee that could threaten his relationship with Aaron. Romance, fantasy, and danger are just over the next dune in "Night of the Jackal" by V.L. Locey. In "Raising Cain" by Winnie Jerome, a gamer meets a too-good-to-be-true hottie with a secret. In Mychael Black's "Thrill of the Hunt," wolf shifter Keeran finds more than he bargains for when he meets Saul Alliaume. In "Tea and Werewolves" by Cecil Wilde, Sev knows there's more to his newest customer than meets the eye.
In "Packbond"by M. Lee, romance blossoms between Alex and Troy until a stranger with dangerous links to Troy's past arrives on their doorstep. In "Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas" by Tray Ellis, TJ and Arlo are each expected to take up their respective family businesses, but for Arlo it's a job with real bite. Rob Rosen's "The Dingo Ate My Dildo" is mystical, magical tale of love, lust, and things that howl in the night. In "Paw Prints on My Skin" by L.J.Hamlin, sexy werewolf tattoo artist Zack, meets cute Labrador shifter Tobias. In "Search and Rescue" by Lorne Rodman, shapeshifter Clancy needs a new partner for search and rescue work.
Individual Stories:
Black, One Sugar by Jae Christopher

Night of the Jackal by V.L. Locey
Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas by Tray Ellis
Packbond by M. Lee
Pawprints on My Skin by L.J. Hamlin
Photorealism by Julia Talbot
Raising Cain by Winnie Jerome
Search and Rescue by Lorne Rodman
Tea and Werewolves by Cecil Wilde
The Dingo Ate My Dildo by Rob Rosen
Thrill of the Hunt by Mychael Black
Coming Next Week...

The Stonechild Betrothal
by Katalinya Palokova
As a professional bodyguard in a magical city, Estli has survived a lot of close calls, but he's never fallen in love with a client, thwarted an ancient curse, and challenged an evil magician to a fistfight all in the same week. There's a first time for everything, right?

Genre: Fantasy
Steven's Heart
by Ashavan Doyon
Bonding over the loss of your first love with his ex shouldn't be soothing. It certainly shouldn't make the heart flutter. But it makes Steven's heart race.
Genre: Contemporary, Drama

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

On sale this week

This week we have selected titles from Julia Talbot, Lorne Rodman, Jae Christopher, Tray Ellis, LJ Hamlin, Winnie Jerome, VL Locey, Rob Rosen, and Mychael Black on sale for 20% off! Check 'em out here: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=specials

Monday, August 18, 2014

BDSMonday - Five Myths



It's BDSMonday!

Today I have an article for you, written by Kristen Sollee of Women's Health Magazine. She discusses five major myths about BDSM. It's a great article to show vanilla friends/family/whatever if they react negatively when the topic of kink arises.

Have a great week everyone!

My Zombie Boyfriend


Hi internet!

I'd like to introduce you to My Zombie Boyfriend.

My Zombie Boyfriend, internet. 

It's about cats and zombies (and a zombie cat!) I know you're into those things, so naturally, I thought of you! I'll leave you two alone to get to know each other.

                                                                           ---



So, I've been sitting on this HUGE piece of news since the 7th and I couldn't wait to tell you guys, but I wanted to wait until it was finalized. And as of today--I just signed the contract for my first full-length novel, and it's going to be released as a paperback!

I do mean this is my first novel--I've written longer pieces, but all of them were fanfiction (or about historical people, not original characters, and I don't want to talk about that XD).



I don't want to give away too much this early in the game, but I can tell you that it's M/M (of course).

The story is told by Edward, a medical student/necromancer who finds a body in a park and brings it home...and back to life.

This story has been in my life for years, almost as long as I've known my wife, and I'm thrilled that I can finally share it with the world. It was originally supposed to be a webcomic that I wrote and my wife illustrated, but it never got past the first few pages. We also roleplayed it, and we've spent a lot of time exploring this world. I had a lot of material and ideas to draw upon. (I'd like to note that I offered my wife co-author status and she refused).

December of 2012, the story wanted out. I wrote most of it longhand, and the words just kept coming and coming until I had a novel.

I heard about the ABNA awards, and decided to enter MZB (I call it MZB. You can, too), mostly to give myself some sort of deadline.

Amazingly, even though the novel was very fresh and hardly edited, the concept got it past the first round. It didn't make it through the second, but it really wasn't ready.

I waited and got busy with other projects, giving it the time and space it needed, until it was ready to be edited. I knew I wanted it to be a paperback, but while it had been percolating, Torquere had raised their minimum word count from 50,000 to 60,000 words...so I had to add a few scenes, and beef others up a little. I ended up adding a character who was new to the novel, but not to the MZB universe, and I'm glad I did. I've gotten positive feedback about him already.

I would like to give a huge thank you to Jordan White for being my beta reader and her lovely and entertaining comments. Please check out her blog.

I would also like to thank my lovely editor, Elizabeth Brooks, for reading the first chapter and demanding more!

                                                                             ---

Look for My Zombie Boyfriend from Torquere Press.

I've already started collecting giveaway items for the release day party and I'm so excited to share them with you!

I don't have a release date yet, but updates will be posted here, so stay tuned.

(PS: BDSMonday will follow in a few hours)

M/M Romance on the Radio with Hummingbird Place

Tonight, my co-author (Erin McRae) and I are going to be on Hummingbird Place, an Internet radio show dedicated to the romance genre. We'll be talking about our writing process and how we do characterization at 7pm EST, and all you need to do is follow the link to find out how to tune in.

For me, this isn't anything too new.  I've had to do radio and TV interviews as part of my desk jobs since I was sixteen.  For Erin, it's her first time out, and there have been a few nervous emails this morning.  We've prepped a little bit, and I've assured her it will be easy.  We've also listened to the show and given the host our information.  Now we just have to let ourselves be steered through it. Hosts are magical people whose jobs are to make their guests sound great.

But what I perhaps should have told Erin this morning is to look not just to non-fiction advice going into tonight's interview, but to look at the novel we're promoting.

Starling, which comes out on September 10th, is the story of J. Alex Cook, a production assistant on a popular TV show who accidentally gets catapulted to stardom. Learning to deal with the media is one of Alex's great challenges, and one that hits him early and often as he struggles to navigate his private life in public.

Before his first big interview, his manager Margaret tells him that sometimes "it's important to be less weird." She means well, and her advice isn't wrong, but the weird is also part of Alex's charm.  So tonight, Erin & I are going to try to be clear, concise, and just a little bit weird about how two people can create single voices for so many diverse characters.  And we're also going to get to feel a little bit like the stars, we've spent the last year creating.

If you'd like to get a preview of Alex and his hero, Paul, please make sure to download Torquere's free-read anthology Please Don't Feed the Alligators, which features lots of great stories, including one from Erin and me.  You can also always visit us at http://www.Avian30.com.

We hope you'll tune in.  It's a live call-in show, and the entire episode is dedicated to characterization and there will be lots of great guests and giveaways!