Today’s the last day to get Walk a Mile at 25% off during Dreamspinner’s Halloween Sale!

DSP Halloween SaleI want to make sure everyone knows about Dreamspinners early Halloween sale! All paranormals, fantasies, sci-fi, mystery and suspense e-books are 25% off but the sale ends today!

It won’t be your last chance to get Walk a Mile at a discount, however! I’m going to be taking over the Dreamspinner Facebook page from 2-4 pm EST Sunday, Oct12th and there will be a coupon code good for several days offered then. I do hope you’ll drop in for a chat and some giveaways!

The Pride Promotions book tour for Walk a Mile is ongoing:today I’ll be at Romance the Night, Cate Ashwood, and also at Shae Conner’s too. Stop by, enter the Rafflecopter, and ask me some questions–I’d like to hear from you!

Another big day on the Walk a Mile Tour!

Fall PumpkinsWell, I have a big day scheduled today! Walk a Mile is a bestseller on All Romance and Dreamspinner Press–and I have only you, the readers, to thank! I I know that sounds corny, but believe me, I knew that by taking so long to come out with the sequel to Unspeakable Words, I ran a huge risk of no one caring anymore about my boys, John Flynn and Jerry Parker. But you guys do. You still do! And that both amazes me and humbles me, too.

Today, I’m going to be stopping on some wonderful sites: Andrew Q Gordon, Inked Rainbow Reads, Love Bytes, and Smoocher’s Voice!

BestsellerIcon100X100This coming Sunday from 2-4 pm EST, I’ll be doing a live chat on the Dreamspinner Press Facebook page–I do hope you’ll join me! Barring spoilers, you can ask me (almost) anything! And on Tues, Oct 14, I’ll be taking over Dreamspinner’s Twitter feed with fellow author Jude Dunn from 8-10 pm EST. I’m looking forward to chatting with you guys and sharing about what’s in store for the Sixth Sense series!

DSP Halloween SaleAnd you still have a couple of days left to take advantage of the early Halloween sale on Dreamspinner! All paranormal, sci-fi, fantasy, mystery, and suspense e-books are 25% off, now until Oct. 10th! What are you waiting for? 🙂

Where is the world is Sarah Madison? Walk a Mile Book Tour, Sale & Giveaway continues!

travelIt’s day five of the Walk a Mile book tour, and man, has it been a whirlwind experience! The best part has been hearing from people all over the world how much they’ve been looking forward to the continuing adventures of Parker and Flynn. The worst part has been cringing when people howl, “It’s been so looooong!” Okay, I deserved that. 🙂 Life has a way of derailing you at times when you least expect it. But I promise it will NOT be four years before the next installment, I swear!!

Today I’m a the wonderful Charlie Cochet’s site, talking about sex in our romance stories–how much is too much? Too little? Just right? It promises to be an interesting discussion, so do drop in and tell me what you think! I’m also over at 3 Chicks After Dark, talking about my favorite paranormal element and why! I’d love to hear what *your* favorite paranormal element might be! And last, but not least, I have a new review at Prism Book Alliance. It made me both cringe and blush–so be sure to check it out and find out why! There’s also that rafflecopter thingy floating around somewhere, so find it and enter to win a copy of Unspeakable Words! Of course, if you already have that, we’ll have to talk about what we can substitute instead. 🙂

DSP Halloween SaleSpeaking of my backlist, the Halloween sale is still ongoing at Dreamspinner Press, which means you can get 25% off almost my entire backlist with them! Sale ends October 10th, so hurry!

If you missed the beginning of the tour, it’s not too late to go back in and join the fun! Previously, I was at these sites, but it’s not too late to check out the reviews and posts, there, either!

 

October 3: Louise Lyons, Parker Williams
October 6: Multitasking Mommas, Kimi-Chan

So, see you around the internet! I’m looking forward to conversations with everyone. 🙂

The Walk a Mile Book Tour continues: reviews, interviews, and more!

Walk a Mile – By Sarah Madison from UK Film Festivals on Vimeo.

Celebratory ChampageWow, it’s been an exciting weekend here! Walk a Mile was released on Friday, October 3rd, and the response has been tremendous! Not only did Walk a Mile break the top 100 bestselling gay romances on Amazon, but I’ve received emails and messages from people all over the world, telling me how much they love Flynn and Parker, and how happy they are to have more stories about them. I can’t tell you how much this means to me. I was concerned that people had forgotten all about Flynn and Parker (yes, I know it’s been a very long time since the release of Unspeakable Words), and I was frankly flabbergasted at the response to Walk a Mile! I can promise you that it will not be such a long delay until the next installment in the Sixth Sense series–in fact, I am working on it right now. 🙂 I’ll be honest, though. I have a demanding day job and I tend to write slowly as a result.  But it won’t be four years before the next book, of that I’m sure!

I’ve already told you about my marvelous soundtrack for Unspeakable Words. If you’ve read that story, you’ll appreciate just how amazing this playlist is. If Unspeakable Words was a movie, then the playlist would win the Academy Award for Best Soundtrack! Well, now I have a shiny new book trailer, too!

Walk a Mile – By Sarah Madison from UK Film Festivals on Vimeo.

WillPrideToday, the book tour continues! I’ll be stopping by Grace Duncan’s site, and as part of Pride Promotions, I’ll be visiting Multitasking Mommas, and Kimi-Chan as well. I’m looking forward to the next stops in the tour–my experience with Pride Promotions has been exemplary! I would highly recommend them to anyone seeking to promote their new release through a book tour! Be sure to check ot the rafflecopter on these stops for your chance to win a copy of Unspeakable Words.

Later this week, there will be more stops on the book tour, and I’ll be hosting Suki Fleet here as well, with a spotlight on her latest release. So stay tuned–things are definitely hoping around here right now!

Also, Dreamspinner  Press is currently holding an early Halloween sale! From now until October 10th, they are offering 25% off all paranormal, fantasy, sci-fi, mystery, and suspense stories in e-book format. That pretty much includes all my backlist, as well as Walk a Mile and Unspeakable Words! So now is your chance to get these stories at a great price for a limited time!

 

Walk a Mile by Sarah Madison: Release Day, Book Tour, Book Sale & Giveway!

WalkAMileIt’s here! Today’s the release date for Walk a Mile, book two in the Sixth Sense series. I’m both excited and nervous about this one! Excited because at long last I’m ready to launch the sequel to Unspeakable Words, and nervous because it has been a long time between stories.

The story has been selling like hot-cakes in pre-orders, which is encouraging. Pride Promotions has set up a fabulous book tour that will be taking place over the next two weeks, starting tomorrow with stops at the blogs of Louise Lyons and Parker Williams. I have an awesome soundtrack to Unspeakable Words that I want to share with everyone (and which I’m listening to right now), and the final touches are being put on a book trailer.

I’ve done everything I can. I feel like a parent walking my child to the bus stop for the first time. I’ve packed a lunch. Name tags have been sewn into clothing. I’ve raised my ‘child’ up to be brave and kind and stick up for himself on the play yard. But I can’t make anyone like my child, nor can I walk beside him all day long protecting him from harm. It’s up to this story to make its own way in the world now, while I get cracking on the next one. 🙂

After all, you don’t want to wait years for the next installment, right? Well, I promise you won’t have to! In the meantime, Happy Release Day to me!

Here’s the Rafflecopter code–I’m giving away a copy of Unspeakable Words (for anyone who hasn’t already read it!)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

DSP Halloween Sale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I almost forgot, Dreamspinner is holding a Halloween Sale! 25% off all Paranormal, Sci-fi, Fantasy, Mystery, and Suspense! I think that just about covers most of my titles with them! So if you’ve been thinking about buying Walk a Mile or something from my backlist, now is your chance to get it at a great price!

Louise Lyons shares her views on being “Conflicted” and a Giveaway!

Conflicted header bannerLouise Lyons is here today talking about her new release, Conflicted, from Dreamspinner Press! Be sure to check out the Rafflecopter at the end of the post for a $10 Amazon Gift Card!

Hello Louise! Welcome to my blog and thank you for answering my nosy discerning, questions! First, please tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of stories you like to write. Would you say there is an underlying theme behind your stories?

Well, I’m over 40, single, and I have a day job in the insurance industry. I have a lot of hobbies, including long distance running, cycling, cross stitch needlework, hiking and camping, and maintaining my own car and motorcycle. I’m a bit of a tomboy and I’m not afraid of hard work, or getting my hands dirty. I like my own company and I often find it difficult to make friends, mainly because I like being on my own a little too much! But I’ve met some lovely people through my writing and am developing some great friendships.

I often have an angsty theme running through my stories. I do like to torment my poor characters and give them struggles to cope with, but there’s always a happy ending eventually! I don’t stick to just one genre within M/M romance though. Although there’s often angst, I write contemporary, coming of age and supernatural themes. I would quite like to include an historical theme in a future story as well – although I’m sure there would be plenty of pain and suffering in that as well!

I do think that many writers prefer solitary pursuits. 🙂 You sound like me in terms of story-telling–one genre simply isn’t enough! What part of the world do you call home? Can you tell us a little about where you grew up and where you live now?

I grew up close to the fishing port of Grimsby, on the east coast of the UK. It’s not the nicest town in the world, ha-ha! I lived in a village though, so it wasn’t all bad. I left in 2006, spent 4 years in a similar industrial town and then in 2010 I moved to a small market town just outside the city of Peterborough, which is about an hour north of London. I love where I live now – it’s practically in the country, so there are quiet lanes and fields right on my doorstep. Just what I need, as I enjoy running so much.

Atop Chanctonbury RingI had the opportunity to travel to the UK for the first time a few years ago, but I’ve been an Anglophile most of my reading life. 🙂 I spent most of my time in Sussex, but I did get as far north as Oxford. Lovely country. I’d go back in a heartbeat.

What gave you the courage to submit your first story to a publisher?

I spent a few years writing Fan Fiction, and when I posted my very first M/M romance, I was surprised and delighted by the number of positive comments I received. I think I posted about 25 – 30 stories over the space of 3 or 4 years and I built up a significant following during that time. Some of my readers suggested I tried to get published and at first I just thought “maybe one day”, but in the end I thought about it properly. I was already writing and people from all over the world were reading and giving me their opinion, so I decided, I already had a great launching pad and just needed to push myself to see if a publisher thought my writing was any good, the way my “fans” seemed to think it was.

I took the plunge and actually submitted another story before Conflicted, but it had a theme in it which was thought to be a possible turn-off to some readers (infidelity). The story was put on the backburner and Dreamspinner Press suggested I submit something else to them and they would consider the other story at a later date. So a month later I sent in Conflicted and they said “yes”. I was over the moon that taking the plunge paid off.

Congratulations on your first release! It’s said “Writers should write what they know.” What does this statement mean to you as an author?

I’ve heard that a number of times through the years and at times I’ve thought I should do that, but really, I don’t think it matters. If I only wrote what I knew, I’d be writing het romances and being very bored! I think all it takes is research, empathy, talking to people and you can learn anything well enough to write about it. One of my favorite themes is vampires and a lot of authors write about them, including myself, but none of us can say we’re doing it from experience!

I think it’s important to write about what interests you. If you have the passion for something, you’ll put everything into making a good job of it, regardless of whether you’ve experienced what your character has, or visited the place where your story is set, or whether you’re male or female and writing about any one of M/M, M/F, or F/F.

Do you see your writing as a hobby or is it your goal to be a full time writer at some point in the future?

I used to see it as a hobby, but when I got my contract for Conflicted, it gave me a new dream. If I can have one book published, there’s no reason why more shouldn’t follow. I would love to become a full time writer. I don’t expect to become a millionaire, ha-ha – far from it! But if I can pay the bills without needing to work 9 – 5, I would be delighted. And I’m already working on it!

I’m currently waiting for the “yay or nay” on a novel in the supernatural genre, which is based around vampires, a witch and a modern-day “beauty and the beast” theme. It’s called The Eye of the Beholder so I’m keeping my fingers crossed for it. Meanwhile, I’m working on a variety of short stories for anthologies, I have a coming of age romance novel that is ready for submission and I have the outline for an angsty drama based on a young guy who has been a victim of domestic abuse. That’s something I’ve been through myself, so I can write a lot of what he feels from personal experience. The story will start after he escapes from it, but anyone who has been through this type of situation, will know that getting away from the abuser is very often not the end of the pain. I’m also in the planning stages of a novel set in the early 1990s when it was all guitars and big hair and makeup. That was my era, so I have experience to draw on there.

That certainly falls into the ‘write what you know’ category! Good for you to not only survive such an experience but be able to transform it into something that could help someone else, too. I frequently say I write because it is cheaper than therapy, and I’m only partially joking there.

Have you ever been tempted to give up writing? If so, why?

Before I started writing M/M Fan Fiction, I wrote M/F in a variety of genres. I received some quite nasty comments from a small number of people who didn’t like what I’d done with a particular character. Rather than be constructive, the couple of people in question attacked me personally and it hurt. I did stop writing, for maybe a year – or at least I stopped posting what I wrote. I still put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard), but I kept it to myself.
When I look back on that, I tell myself that I’ll never stop writing again, no matter what happens. There are always going to people who don’t like what you write, for whatever reason. We’re all different and we all have different tastes. If I get bad reviews now, I’ll remind myself that there are good ones too, and that just because someone doesn’t like my story, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s no good. As long as someone likes it, then I haven’t wasted my time. I love writing, it’s a big part of my life and I won’t let anything spoil it for me.

There’s a lot to be said for cutting our teeth in fanfiction. We learn not just the mechanics of story-telling but also how to deal with unfavorable reviews and forms of bullying I read a quote recently that said something to the effect that authors had be hard enough to take criticism yet soft enough to share our emotions and feelings. It’s never easy putting yourself on the line like that, but a true writer writes no matter what. 🙂

Thank you so much for dropping by to answer a few questions and share an excerpt of Conflicted with us!

Conflicted

Blurb
Two competing gangs of car and drag racing enthusiasts with a shared history of pain and rivalry leading to outright hatred. Two men from opposite sides of the tracks, yet more in common than they’d like to admit.

Paul Appleton is a troubled man who has never been in a relationship, having lost everyone he cared for in his life. His mother died when he was very young and subsequently, he lost his brother and his best friend. Now Paul is convinced love will always end in tears.

Greg was living on the streets after his parents died and was stabbed by a junkie, ending up in hospital. The Buchanans took Greg under their wing while doing charity work, and Greg joined their loving family when he was adopted. He and his siblings are also car enthusiasts with much more money and therefore better cars than Paul Appleton’s gang.

When they eventually find a connection, Paul fights his feelings and tries to convince himself his lover is only a temporary bit of fun, but Greg has other ideas.

Excerpt:

Greg went to the bar to get a beer and was just handing over the money when he noticed the very man he had been hoping to avoid was right next to him, nursing his own bottle of Budweiser.

“I thought you went to a bar in Stevenage,” Paul commented without looking at Greg.

“I couldn’t be bothered driving over there tonight,” Greg said and gulped some of his beer. He leaned against the bar and glanced at Paul. His gray T-shirt looked about three sizes too small and only emphasized the size of his shoulders and broad back. Intentional, no doubt. His faded jeans were even tighter, and clung to his muscular thighs and firm ass as if they were painted on. Damn, he was hot, and Greg wanted to kick himself for thinking that.

“Not even in the new car?” Paul turned to look at him and raised an eyebrow. His eyes were deep brown and piercing, as if he were looking into Greg rather than at him.

“Not tonight.”

“Nice, by the way. Shame we don’t all have rich parents to shower us with toys like that.”

It was just what Greg expected – a brief compliment quickly crushed by an insult. He was immediately pissed.

“You know nothing about it,” he growled.

Paul shrugged. “I can’t blame you. I wouldn’t have said no either.”

“Listen, Appleton, I won’t pretend I’m not smug as hell driving around in an R34, but I didn’t ask for it and to be honest, I would rather have bought a car I can afford with my own money, which I do earn, by the way. I don’t just live off of them like a fucking leech!”

“Alright, chill, I’m sorry,” Paul said.

“Yeah, well, it gets up my nose that people think I’m rich and spoiled when I work hard like anybody else. I can’t help the fact that I got adopted by the Buchanans. I came from an ordinary family, same as most people, even you.”

“My family was anything but ordinary,” Paul grumbled. “So how come you were adopted anyway?”

“You actually want to know?” Greg asked in surprise.

“Yeah, why not?”

“Okay, we might as well get a seat, then.” Greg turned away from the bar and headed for a corner away from the main bustle, leaving Paul to follow if he felt like it. Greg wasn’t particularly delighted by the prospect of spending more time with him, but since he was here, there wasn’t much else Greg could do. Annoyingly, his pulse sped up as he made his way to an unoccupied corner bench and sat down. He chewed his lip. Paul was still at the bar, speaking to someone he apparently knew, but a moment later, he moved away and walked toward Greg. Fuck, those jeans were tight, and Greg would have bet Paul had no underwear on either.

Jesus, don’t stare. He shifted his eyes up – to bulging pecs. Heat rushed to his groin, and he tried to think about something else. The last thing he wanted was a hard-on, but too long with no fun except for his own hands, and now the company of the hottest guy in the pub, had him stiffening regardless. Greg wondered what the chances were. Would Paul be up for it? Greg knew nothing about him, but he couldn’t imagine him being shy. Greg would bet Paul would shag anything that looked twice at him – or certainly play around with them.

“So? You were going to tell me where you came from,” Paul prompted, dropping onto the seat a little distance away, facing Greg.

“Uh…um…yeah, well, my parents were just ordinary – my dad was a builder and my mum was a waitress. They died in a car crash when I was sixteen.”

“Sorry to hear that,” Paul said with a frown. “Did they treat you okay?”

“My parents? Of course, why wouldn’t they?” That comment puzzled Greg, but he carried on talking. Anything to stop himself imagining Paul’s hand, which was gripping his beer bottle, wrapped around Greg’s cock instead. “They had a huge mortgage, the house got repossessed after they died, and the system didn’t want to know. I lived on the streets for a year, then ended up in hospital, and Agnes Buchanan, who was there doing charity work, took pity on me. And the rest is history.”

“That was lucky.” Paul nodded. “What put you in hospital?”

“A bloke with a knife.

“Shit.”

“So, how did you end up living with…Stewart Sanders, is it?” Greg asked.

“It’s a long story,” Paul grunted. “I left home when I was sixteen, and he and Abby took me in.”

“Why did you leave?”

Paul scowled and drained the rest of his beer before answering. “It’s not important.

“Humor me,” Greg said, genuinely interested.

“I’m not here to entertain you!” Paul snapped and got to his feet.

“Hey…” Greg protested. Hell, the guy had a chip on his shoulder. A huge chip. And he was about to walk away from Greg just when he was beginning to convince himself that they were getting along, and that he might possibly get his hand inside those tight jeans later. But Paul was already walking to the bar.

“Shit!” Greg growled under his breath. He was annoyed that Paul walked away and more annoyed still that he was disappointed. It had seemed like they might be starting to move past what happened at Octane, and Greg hoped the stupid feud might have been forgotten too.

Paul hadn’t gone far. He had wedged himself between two men at the bar and was waiting to be served another drink. Greg stared at his ass until he turned around again and then quickly dropped his eyes and pretended interest in the last mouthful of beer in his bottle.
“Sorry.” Paul appeared at the other side of the table, placed a fresh bottle of Bud in front of Greg, and then stepped over his legs and took up his original seat, maybe a foot closer to Greg than before.

“No, I’m sorry. I suppose I come across as if I’m prying, but really, I’m just interested.”

The corner of Paul’s mouth twitched up slightly into a hint of a smile. “Just don’t ask me about family.”

“Okay. So can I ask about your job at the club? Don’t they need you on a Friday night?”
“They rotate the weekend days off. It’s my first in the month I’ve been there. It’s a good job – decent pay too, better than the shitty warehouse I was in before.”

“Yeah, I imagine bouncers get paid pretty well.” Greg nodded. “Do you have to use your fists much?” Damn, Greg, what the hell did you say that for? He cursed himself.

Paul grinned. “Not really. You get more trouble with drunken girls trying to slobber all over you.” He pulled a face. “If there’s real trouble, you diffuse it rather than add to it. I do kickboxing and jujitsu to help with that.”

“Cool,” Greg said. It was something they had in common. “I did kickboxing for a few years. I’ve been thinking about taking up something else too.”

Paul nodded and took another drink. Greg watched the movement of his throat as he swallowed and imagined his lips were wrapped around his cock instead of the bottle. He shifted awkwardly and rested his arm across his lap, hoping not to draw attention to the fact that he was getting uncomfortably hard. Paul lowered the bottle, and his eyes slid from Greg’s face, down his chest, and fixed on exactly what he was hoping Paul wouldn’t look at. He grinned and trapped the tip of his tongue between his teeth. Oh fuck. He was checking Greg out and way more obviously than Greg was checking him

Should Greg ignore it, or go with it? Did he seriously want to get off with Paul? How difficult would that make things if they ran into each other at shows or something in the future? What the hell would the family say if they found out? What on earth was Greg thinking when he considered taking a chance with a person who went out of his way to make trouble for himself and others?

Greg thought for another minute and realized that it was going to be the only chance he had, at least for that evening. Besides, who was going to know? Paul didn’t want anyone finding out about him anymore than Greg did.

“What are you looking at?” Greg grunted as a way of starting a sort of flirting interaction.

“Isn’t it obvious? Like my company, do you?” Paul responded.

“It seems like it, doesn’t it?”

Paul arched an eyebrow and leaned back. He shifted his ass forward on the seat and drew attention to the fact that the ridiculously tight jeans were virtually crushing him. Greg could make out the head of his cock pushing against the fabric. He wondered if it was his imagination or if he was more turned on than he’d ever been in his life.

Conflicted is available from Dreamspinner Press as an e-book and paperback. Thank you, Louise, for joining us here today and sharing with us a bit about your life and your story! I hope you’ll come back in the future and tell us more about your upcoming works. 🙂

Louise Lyon’s Blog 
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Tempe O’Riley’s Desires’ Guardian Book Tour & Giveaway!

DesiresGuardian_headerbanner

I’m delighted to have author Tempe O’Riley back here today to share with us some about her latest release in the Desires series by Dreamspinner Press! If you recall, Tempe dropped by the website last August to talk about the first book in the series, Designs of Desire. I’m so pleased that she’s back here today to talk about the latest in the series! Be sure to read through the entire post for her interview, and to find out how you can be entered into her Rafflecopter giveaway!

Desires’ Guardian
by Tempeste O’Riley

Desires Entwined series book #2

M/M Erotic Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Release Date: June 6th, 2014 (ebook/print)

Length: Novel / 200 pages

 

 

Order: Dreamspinner Press All Romance Amazon B & N

Add to: Goodreads

 

Description:

Most people see Chase Manning as the party-boy twink he seems on the surface. Only James, Chase’s BFF, knows the depth of his loyalty and the extent of the wounds Chase carries inside. When Chase meets Rhys Sayer things don’t go well, but he can’t shake his attraction to the huge, sexy man.

Rhys is a man of contradictions and fear—a strange combination for a PI and bodyguard. He’s in a bad place emotionally when he sets eyes on Chase for the first time. When Chase puts the moves on him, Rhys insults him, thwarting any possibility of a relationship. Rhys doesn’t see himself as a complicated man, but he dreads the very kind of connection he desires.

Just as they’re trying to overcome their uncertainties, Chase is put in harm’s way. Luckily Rhys and their friends have all the right talents to help Rhys save the man of his dreams.

Hello, Tempe! Welcome to my blog and thank you for answering my nosy discerning, questions! First, please tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of stories you like to write. Would you say there is an underlying theme behind your stories?

Hi Sarah! Thanks for inviting me to visit and share a little about myself and my newest release, Desires’ Guardian.

I’m not really that interesting, lol. I’m a mom, priestess, and author—and yes, in that order. 😉 I love to read, I’m not even that picky on genre, though my favorites are contemporary and paranormal. I’m never without at least one book active on my night stand and/or Kindle. As for what I love to write, that’s easy…

I write about the heart finding its perfect match. That’s not to say that either MC is perfect—how boring and freaky would that world be—but that they’re perfect for each other. So far I have gay men, bi men, and gender fluid people all seeking to find the other half of their heart. There’s such a wonderful feeling when you get to write “The End” and look back on not only a story of love but one of overcoming and triumph.

As for my “theme”… that would have to be to never judge the person by the wrappings. Whether you are gay, straight, bi, trans, fluid, disabled, abled, tall, short, fem, butch, or any other label you might think up, it’s the person inside that matters, not the outer shell of the person. That’s actually a huge issue in Desires’ Guardian, as you can probably guess from the blurb, but it’s so true. It’s the same driving thought that helped me create Designs of Desire and my fall release, Temptations of Desire, as well.

What gave you the courage to submit your first story to a publisher?

A couple of authors already well-established in the publishing world. Even once I decided to write my first book, I still wasn’t set on submitting it. But, after joining in the old Six Sentence Sunday and gaining followers for my first story and being encouraged by the likes of Andrew Grey and Dianne Hartsock, I bit the bullet and sent Designs of Desire to Dreamspinner Press. DSP was my first choice publisher, and I couldn’t be more thrilled that they said yes! So what gave me the courage, seeing that others than just me loved my guys and the love of other authors, willing to bolster a baby author. It’s one decision I will never regret!

I see you write M/M fiction. Would you characterize your stories as M/M romance, erotica, or something in between?

Actually, I prefer the tern homoerotic romance 😉 I write erotic romance, that’s to say, romance with the reader is invited into the bedroom, or kitchen, or living room, or… well, you get the picture, right, lol. The characters are my focus, but getting to read the sex is hot too! However, I often don’t use the term M/M even though all my characters are male.
Yeah, I know, that seems like a weird line to draw, but you see, one of the characters you met in Designs of Desire, and again in Desires’ Guardian, is bi, and another you’ve yet to meet is gender fluid. When I hear M/M I think of gay romance, and while all my men do have yummy boy bits, that’s not all they are. But I love to read sexy boys that find love, not just lust, so that’s also what I write—though you never know, I might branch out into other areas of the GLBTQ…

Do you listen to music while you write? If yes, do you find what you listen to influences the story at all?

Always! If it’s too quiet, I can’t write. Heck, I can’t read if it’s too quiet either. I love music and tend to d weird things like plug in a couple of groups into Pandora and then see where their muse goes. Once in a while the music I’m listening to affects the story, but it’s more likely for me to put on a particular song or group because of what I’m writing than the other way around.

Do you miss your characters when you come to the end of their story? Do you find ways to write sequels for them or do you become entranced with a new set?

LOL. Funny you should ask that. You see, I loved James and Seth so much (from Designs of Desire), I’ve written two shorts that happen between Designs of Desire and Desires’ Guardian. The first is in the Grand Adventures anthology (the donation anthology benefiting Eric Arvin and TJ Klune) called Simple Desires. The other just released on May 30th and is a freebie to my readers called Bound by Desire.

In fact, take a moment and go grab yourself a copy (it’s FREE).

A Spin-off of Designs of Desire
Desires Entwined: Book 1.75
Despite his past abuse, James has come to terms with his relationship with his Dom and lover Seth. Seth treats James with all the trust and love his sub desires. There is only one thing left to do to make it all complete: Seth needs to put a collar on James.
Dreamspinner or All Romance

 

Desires Entwined Series:

 

  

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About the Author:

Tempeste O’Riley is an out and proud  omnisexual / bi-woman whose best friend growing up had the courage to do what she couldn’t–defy the hate and come out. He has been her hero ever since.

Tempe is a hopeless romantic that loves strong relationships and happily-ever-afters. Though new to writing M/M, she has done many things in her life, though writing has always drawn her back–no matter what else life has thrown her way. She counts her friends, family, and Muse as her greatest blessings in life. She lives in Wisconsin with her children, reading, writing, and enjoying life.

Tempe is also a proud PAN member of Romance Writers of America®, Rainbow Romance Writers, and WisRWA. Learn more about Tempeste and her writing at http://tempesteoriley.com.

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New releases, Cover Art Wars, Interviews and more for Sarah Madison…

Not Quite Shakespeare PaperbacksYou know how it is when you want to share a bunch of information but you have to keep tracking down links and C&P them where you need them? It’s not worth making a whole file for them because many have a short shelf-life and you don’t need to keep them *forever*, but still, it would be nice to have them all in one place.

Yeah, that’s what this post is about. 🙂

First, look at my lovely books! I came home last night to discover that Dreamspinner Press had sent me complimentary copies of the Not Quite Shakespeare Anthology! Yesterday was the release day, and the timing of the books couldn’t have been better! I had a typical Monday at work, which means my guts were churning with stomach acid by the time I got home–this was the perfect antidote! Available as both an e-book and a paperback, Not Quite Shakespeare contains 15 stories of love and adventure set in the UK by some of your favorite M/M authors–including me! 😉 You really need to check this one out! I’ve been looking forward to it for what seems like forever! Now on Amazon, too!

Atop Chanctonbury RingIn honor of the release of Not Quite Shakespeare, I was interviewed yesterday by the incomparable Sarah Granger, author of the smokin’ hot Regency M/M romance A Minor Inconvenience. I shared my inspiration for my contribution to the anthology, Chanctonbury Ring, as well as some photos and my love for all things UK.

 

And if you missed it, I was over at Raine O’Tierney’s Hat Party, talking about Chanctonbury Ring and my fear of zombies! (No, the two are not related!) I’m also holding a giveaway there, but time is running out soon on that!

 

The Boys of Summer400x600Also, the cover for The Boys of Summer, designed by the amazing Reese Dante, is currently participating in Cover Wars over on the Masquerade Crew! This is a month-long battle to see which cover will come out as the victor, and truly, the cover for The Boys of Summer deserves to be one of the top contenders, yes? Yes! So save this link! Drop by daily and select your ten favorite covers that will move onto the next round.  Be sure to share this link on your various social media sites–the more the merrier! I’ll be posting little snippets about how I came to write this story, and why it means so much to me.

Speaking of covers, I just sent in my spec requests for the cover for Walk a Mile, the sequel to Unspeakable Words, due out this fall. I’m like a child two weeks before Christmas, imagining the various prezzies I might get and knowing that what I get in the end will exceed all my expectations!

Sizzling Summer Reads 2014Last, but not least, I’m one of the participating authors in the Summer Sizzling Reads Party over at The Romance Reviews for the entire month of June! You can click on the banner on the right of my webpage to go to the party, or follow the link here. The Boys of Summer will be featured on June 14th with a Q&A. The answer to the question is hidden somewhere on this site–so if you want to get in the running for a free e-copy of one of my stories, you’ve got a couple of weeks to poke around this site looking for the answer!

Be sure to come back this weekend, when I’ll be hosting author Tempe O’Riley as part of her book tour for the next in her Desires series. Lots of fun things going on this summer!

Sarah Granger’s story is worth “A Minor Inconvenience”

A_Minor_Inconvenience_Large_transparentOh, I can’t tell you how pleased I am to be hosting Sarah Granger today as part of the A Minor Inconvenience book tour. I recently reviewed her wonderful M/M historical romance and I couldn’t sing its praises highly enough! I’m not the only one, either! Gay Guy Reading Reviews calls it ‘a breath of fresh air’, and I have to agree. I consider A Minor Inconvenience one of the best M/M romances I’ve read in 2014. 🙂 Be sure to read through the entire post to find out how you can enter the Rafflecopter for some cool prizes!

Welcome to my website, Sarah! I’m delighted to have you here today, sharing with us something about your historical M/M romance, A Minor Inconvenience. I’ve been looking forward to this interview and book tour so much! I can’t say enough wonderful things about this story, but I want to make sure that I don’t get too spoilery here. I want everyone to read this story and enjoy it as much as I did!

First, a couple of questions about this particular story. Correct me if I’m wrong, but A Minor Inconvenience takes place at the time when Napoleon escaped from Elba and started a second campaign, is that correct? What was your inspiration for this story?

Thanks for having me here, Sarah, and I’m truly delighted that you enjoyed A Minor Inconvenience so much!

The book is set in 1813, though the date isn’t mentioned in the book itself. It’s actually just before Napoleon was banished to Elba, taking with him an eye-watering number of his favourite horses, but not, so far as I’m aware, his wife. My choice of year for the book was in some ways a little random. It needed to be far enough through the war for campaigning to have taken up most of Hugh’s adult life, but my ultimate choice of 1813 was due to my rather wistful longing that none of the military men who returned to the Peninsula after the events of the book would face too much more war.

As for inspiration, I wanted to write an M/M Regency and I have something of a weakness for military uniforms. That led to the overall concept, but once the characters came into being, they shaped the story in somewhat different ways from those I’d envisaged. So I guess my original moment of inspiration was down to those darn military uniforms!

Hugh is such a wonderful character! He seems like such a deceptively simple man, which is probably why so many underestimate him, including members of his family. He leads a quiet life and had has fairly low expectations for life outside the measures decreed by society. He believes in honor and duty: duty to his country, his family, and his position in society. He is a fairly self-contained man as well, but this doesn’t mean he is dull or without brains. These fundamental characteristics are what make it so tremendous when he decides to go against everything he believes in for love. What was it like to write such a character? Were you ever concerned as to how he would be perceived by your audience?

In a word, yes! You’ve summed him up so beautifully here. I was definitely worried that people picking up the book might take him at face value – which might also lead them to question what qualities he possessed that could attract Theo. As you say, he’s deceptively straightforward and one has to look beyond his self-perception to see who he really is. But each time I wondered if I could persuade him to be a little more forthcoming and open, it was very clear that doing so would violate his character.

By necessity, Theo had to remain a bit of a dark horse in this story, yet he comes across as a completely three dimensional character. Did you create a backstory for Theo in your mind when you were writing this?

I do have a backstory for him, because he’s full of such vitality that I needed to know where he came from and how he got to where he is at the time of the book. But his history in my head isn’t detailed – his personality seemed to me to shape him more than events. (I’m happy to share his backstory, but I haven’t set it out here because I know some people prefer to have their own ideas.)

Why M/M romance? What’s the attraction there for you?

I find that a difficult question to answer because I don’t really know. 🙂 When I first started reading M/M, there was just something about it that appealed to me straight away. As a writer, I struggle with the concept of writing a female main character I like – even while part of me is curling up in horror at that statement.

I think what ultimately attracts me is something in the different dynamic between two male main characters, and the way M/M relationships aren’t bogged down with the same societal baggage as M/F.

Why historicals? Is there a particular period in time that you feel drawn to, and if so, why? Once having thoroughly researched an era, do you find yourself drawn to writing other stories in the same time frame?

I grew up reading Georgette Heyer, so the Regency is always going to have a special place in my heart. I love the formality of it for its own sake, but also for the way in which all that unresolved sexual tension bleeds through. It’s also close enough to our time to be able to write in a reasonable facsimile of the language they used rather than being faced with the choice whether to render old speech into today’s idioms or to try and make it sound somehow ‘old-fashioned’ without writing it in Middle English!

I definitely hope to write more stories set in the Regency. I love Regencies, and the thought of writing M/M Regencies opens up all sorts of exciting possibilities.

Have you written in other genres besides M/M romance? Besides historicals?

My books so far are all M/M. My first novel was a contemporary, set in the world of professional tennis. As with A Minor Inconvenience, it required quite a lot of fact-checking, but I can truthfully say that the research was a sheer joy from start to finish. I mean, going back and rewatching some of my favourite tennis matches on YouTube and not feeling guilty for wasting time? It doesn’t get much better than that!

What is the most difficult scene you’ve ever written and why? What was the most fun?

I think the scene I struggled with the most was when Theo tries to explain himself to Hugh in the carriage. Finding the right balance between Theo saying enough for readers (if not Hugh) to understand while keeping true to his character and period was difficult. I ended up wanting to throttle the pair of them for being so oblique in their conversation!

I’ve had an absolute blast writing Hugh and Theo, but my vote for the scene I had most fun writing has to go to Ryan in The Unforgiving Minute and his observations when he’s been given morphine. He’s a fairly stream-of-consciousness narrator in any case; removing such filters as he has was instructional, to say the least.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and all the characters in it! Will we see more from Hugh and Theo? Lady Emily?

I hadn’t planned on writing more of these characters because I felt that, although their story wasn’t done, my part in telling it was. But it’s always possible that a story set in the same universe might demand to be written, especially as I’d love to see Hugh and Theo from Lady Emily’s perspective! Thank you for the encouragement. 🙂

What are you currently working on? Tell us a little bit about your next story and the writing process for you as well. What can readers expect from Sarah Granger in the future?

Well, I’ve just made the very difficult decision to shelve the story I’ve been working on for some time, and the reason for that decision ties in directly to my writing process. I wrote it because it fitted with a submission call, not because I had characters turn up in my head and demand that I tell their story. The story’s quite enjoyable, I think, but I’m not happy with it, despite a massive rewrite and an eye-watering number of tweaks. That’s not to say elements from it might not find themselves reworked in another book.

The result of that decision is that I’m currently looking at a completely clean sheet and deciding what to write next. I’d love it to be another Regency, but I’ve learned from my mistakes—I can’t force anything. Once I know what it is, I’ll definitely share! 🙂

Thank you, Sarah, for joining us here today! I have to point out that one of the BEST parts of a Regency M/M romance is breeches and how well they show off the male form! I’d long known of the practice of some women in that era dampening their muslins in order to define their, um, attributes, but I was unaware (until I read your blog posts) that men did the same to highlight their—assets. 🙂  Long live the desire to show strut your stuff! 

MinorInconvenience-A72lgTour-wide excerpt for A Minor Inconvenience:

Hugh was so turned about by the time the next set of dances ended that he had lost sight entirely of Lindsay. He retreated to the edge of the room, seeking a wall to stand against, only to find a hand placed in the small of his back and Lindsay’s voice close against his ear. “Escaping already, Fanshawe? I cannot permit that. We must present a united front if we are to prevail.”

Smiling, he turned his head. Lindsay looked even more handsome than Hugh had remembered, the silver buttons on his uniform coat sparkling in the light and his grey eyes filled with warmth along with the lazy amusement they so often showed.

“Does your united front permit a strategic regrouping?” Hugh asked.

“Music to my ears, Fanshawe. What have you in mind?”

“I was thinking a glass of punch and perhaps some cool air in the hall.”

“With a tactical brain like that, I can’t think how you have not yet been gazetted as general.”

Procuring a glass of cold punch each, they escaped to the hall that ran the length of the house. It proved to be a busy thoroughfare, used by those seeking to move to the card room or the dressing room, or simply to take some cooler air. In unspoken agreement, they moved to the far end and the large window onto Grosvenor Square, where they would not be disturbed. As Hugh turned to speak to Lindsay, he spied a familiar and extremely unwelcome figure reaching the top of the stairs. Stanton was here, and although Hugh thought he cut a most peculiar character in his striped waistcoat, he was fairly sure Sophia would be less discriminating in her taste.

“Damn it,” he said, momentarily forgetting he was in company.

Lindsay followed his line of sight. “Ah,” he said. “I had the impression the other night that Stanton was dangling after your sister.”

“In a manner of speaking,” Hugh concurred grimly.

“I suspected as much. Perhaps what gave me the first clue was when he likened her eyes to the beauty of stars sparkling like bright diamonds in a sky of black velvet and her smile to the sunrise that graced the dew of Eden’s first dawn.”

Hugh turned a revolted eye upon him. “No,” he begged. “No, for God’s sake, even he would not be so—so—”

“Lost in the poetical throes of passionate romance?” Lindsay suggested.

“I was about to say making a cake of himself,” Hugh said. “But Sophia—I am sure that no matter how handsome she might think him, she would never hear such nonsense without succumbing to giggles.”

“It’s possible I exaggerated his words a little,” Lindsay confessed. “Perhaps he merely mentioned how prettily her eyes shone and that her smile could light the room.”

“Well, that’s bad enough,” Hugh said indignantly. “What sort of a fellow spouts such claptrap?”

“I take it you have never courted a lady,” Lindsay said. “At least, not successfully.”

Hugh choked on his punch. And then something, whether honesty or some inner demon, prompted him to answer. “No, I never have.”

Lindsay fastened his eyes on Hugh’s suddenly, and the look in them was such that Hugh found it difficult to breathe. 

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Sarah Granger’s Official Tour Page

Faberge Shampoo, or what are you working on now, Sarah Madison?

red_flickrRemember that old Faberge shampoo commercial? You know, the one where the woman with the luxurious hair says, “And I told two friends, and they told two friends, and so on, and so on.”

That’s a bit how social media works, isn’t it? 🙂 I got tagged for a ‘and so on’ type of blog post by my friend and fellow author Margarita Gakis. The idea is that I answer a few questions about my writing and tag three more fellow authors, who will, well, you know. And so on. Margarita is the author of Trial by Fire (Book One in the Covencraft series) and one of those brilliant, amazing authors who creates splendid characters with depth and dimension–and is also darned funny. You should check out Trial by Fire–book two (Counter Hex) is in the editing process and book three is underway!

MargaritaTrial By Fire

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are the questions I received:

1. What am I working on?

Hah, this might as well read ‘what should you be working on?’ I’ve just finished the sequel to my FBI/paranormal story Unspeakable Words. Walk a Mile will be coming out with Dreamspinner Press sometime this fall. I’ve started the sequel to that story because I left things on a bit of a cliff-hanger and I didn’t want my audience to suffer too long. 🙂 However, I’ve put that on hold a bit as I work on some other, smaller projects. I have a short story coming out sometime in June in the Not Quite Shakespeare Anthology from Dreamspinner. I’m working on a piece of fanfiction right now, and yes, I still write fanfic. I write it because it’s fun, and because I can let my imagination rip and stretch my writing muscles without worrying about whether or not it will pay the bills. I am writing less of it than I used to, though, primarily because of lack of time. I liken it to a palette cleanser between courses, however. Fanfic brought me back to writing after a 20 year drought. There will always be a special place in my heart for it.

Peggy's ShoesHowever, part of my temporary detour from the latest WIP, tentatively titled Truth and Consequences, is that I am seriously considering stepping a toe in to the traditional romance market. I came across a submission call for a M/F anthology with a tight deadline. I’m doing a little research to see if I can create something this particular press would be interested in. If so, I might be launching the Madison Dean line of stories sooner than I thought!  I’m also making plans for a new series of stories set in the 1950s, in which my main characters are undercover agents investigating paranormal events in a small Southern town. Think of it as Ward and June Cleaver meets Area 51. 🙂 This is a big departure for me, as Sarah Madison writes almost exclusively in the M/M romance genre. The Madison Dean persona and website still needs a bit of work, but we’re getting there.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
The Boys of Summer400x600Hmmm. I frequently describe my stories as being ‘romances with a twist’. I find odd things interesting. I spend most of my time running around thinking, ‘hey, wouldn’t it be cool if…?’ What that means is that you’ll seldom find a straightforward romance among my stories. As you can see from above, I describe Unspeakable Words as a ‘FBI/paranormal story’. The Boys of Summer is a contemporary story, but it has a long historical sequence within it. Crying for the Moon is about a vampire who wants to live a ‘normal’ life. The fun of writing for me is to create a set of characters and put them in a crucible of sorts–to put them in hot water and see how strong they are.
3. Why do I write what I do?
Whew-boy. That’s a tough one. I wish I knew. I write stories that appeal to me. I’m aware they don’t work for everyone. Sometimes I wish my own thought processes were a little more mainstream.  🙂 I’m aware that I’m your basic mid-list author and that I will never rise to NYT bestseller status. I’ve been toying with writing outside the M/M genre. In part because I want to try my hand at something new. In part because I am tired of justifying myself within a genre where some people repeatedly question the presence of any women authors at all. You know, that’s an inherent misogyny that is incredibly frustrating to face time and time again. The implication is that we as women are incapable of accurately portraying a gay man. That we wouldn’t do the same kind of research necessary before we’d write a story about someone with a spinal cord injury, or a historical novel, or a police procedural, or any other topic with which we don’t have personal experience. Sexism is just as ugly as racism or homophobia, and sadly, women authors (and by association female readers as well) are often accorded by some the intellectual respect that someone would give a semi-literate chimpanzee.
But also because I *adore* strong female characters and would give my eyeteeth to be able to create one that doesn’t make me want to bitch-slap her 20 pages into the book. You know what I mean. The kind of woman who can eat whatever she wants and never gain an ounce. The kind who is completely unaware of her beauty (show me a beautiful woman in ignorance of her attractiveness and I’ll call her a liar) and has improbably colored eyes–how many women do you know with lavender-colored irises?? No, my heroines are more like Zoe from Firefly, or Peggy Carter from Captain America, or Kate Beckett on Castle (before she started looking so much like a fashion model–seriously, I preferred her sharp-edged classy look from the beginning of the series) or Amelia Peabody from the Elizabeth Peters novels. So yeah. There are days when I dream of writing a ridiculously runaway bestseller like 50 Shades of Gray. Sadly, that kind of story doesn’t interest me as a reader or a writer. I’d die happy if I created a series heroine I adored.
And I love shoes. 😉Black shoes_resized
4. How does my writing process work?
Well, it usually starts with a ‘what if’ idea. What if rooftop gargoyles came to life every night? What if they were fascinated by humans, read their books, observed their activities? Or what if a vampire decided to shun his old existence and attempt to live life as a moral? What if a hard-ass FBI agent accidentally touched an artifact and developed paranormal powers? I LOVE what if questions. They take my mind on a wild journey where improbable dangers and cheesily romantic things happen. I play around with these ideas for a while, daydreaming over chores or before I drift off to sleep at night.  Eventually the characters take form and I tone down the more ludicrous aspects of my fantasy. And lo, a story is born. 🙂
So there you have it! Now I’m going to tag three authors to answer the same questions next week on their own blogs and tag three more authors themselves. And so on, and so on.
My three fellow authors:
Anna Butler is the author of several short stories in Dreamspinner anthologies, as well as her sci-fi short story Flashwired. I’ve been extremely fortunate to be part of the beta process for her epic five book sci-fi Taking Shield series that is currently submitted to a publisher, as well as her delightful M/M romance Gilded Scarab. She is an incredibly gifted author–her world-building is stellar!
Flashwiredcuddlinglg
My next victim tag-ee is Sarah Granger. I’ve only recently discovered this author! I fell in love with her M/M historical romance A Minor Inconvenience–I can’t say enough good things about it! You can check out my review here. I was absolutely entranced by this story and count it among one of the best M/M romances I’ve read this year. She also *nails* the Regency genre down cold. If you love historicals, this is Jane Austen meets Horatio Hornblower in a story Jane would blush to tell.
MinorInconvenience-A72lgUnforgivingMinute[The]
Last but not least is Hb Pattskyn! I was fortunate enough to have Hb on the website talking about her book, Hanging by the Moment, and I’ve been following with interest her decision to take charge of her health and remake her body. I’m looking forward to hearing what she’s up to now–all three of these tagged authors will have their posts up May 6th so be on the look out for them!
Daniel-and-PashaBound