Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Gay romance review in USA Today

I was delighted last week when USA Today raved about A Forbidden Rumspringa, the first book in my gay Amish romance series:   
There is great chemistry between David and Isaac, and once they admit to each other their true feelings, we get a lot of romance scenes. Their affection is intense and warm and made me smile. While there is a happy ever after at the end of this book, their story will continue in a second book coming out early next year. I can't wait.
Visual approximation of me upon seeing my book was reviewed in USA Today
It's exciting to be featured on a major news site, and exciting that M/M romance is getting more and more mainstream. A Forbidden Rumspringa has been received so warmly, and I'm hard at work on the sequel coming in February 2015. In the meantime, check out book #1:
Buy now: All Romance eBooks | Amazon | Barnes and Noble iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Just over a month away...

Good morning, readers! If you've been playing the home game, you know that I've been EXTREMELY excited about an upcoming release. You also know that I've been posting about it incessantly, ha. Well, I was going to take a break from that for a couple of weeks, but then I got some emails asking for more of Jake and Tor and Chance and Tucker. Who am I to refuse? Here's another little snip.


"Come see us," Tor invited. "Jake and me already talked about it, and I think Jake and Chance did, too. July is a sucky month, but come anytime you want. Seriously."

Jake nodded. "For sure. We’d love to show you around. Nothing cool like Disneyland, but we have fishing and horses and a drive-in theater. Sometimes, anyway."

"Disneyland’s only cool the first time. All that other stuff is way better." Tucker scooped up his pennies and brought them back to the jar. "I wanna see your spread. Then I can tell you which part of your land is good for growing tobacco."

Jake and Tor both snorted. It was an indelicate sound that spoke volumes. "There’s none of the right soil," Tor said.

"And the cows don’t need the nicotine," Jake put in.

"Half of Tucker’s blood is nicotine," Chance said wryly. "He tells me it’s good for you."

"Shoot, just look at me!" Tucker spread his arms and looked down at himself. "Don’t see no stunted growth here, do ya? Not in any area." He leered at Chance a little.

"And that’s our cue!" Jake laughed and reached for Tor’s hand. "Come on. Time to get moving."

A small thread of disappointment wove its way through Chance’s head. It had been nice, the past few days. Really nice. Jake and Tor were good company. "All right," he nodded. "We’ll walk you out."

Tucker made a face. "Man. Too bad y’all have to go."

Jake nodded and dropped Tor’s hand. "We’ve had a great time," he agreed, offering his hand to Tucker. "Thanks."

Tucker took Jake’s hand and pulled him in for a quick bro-hug. "Was good to see you," he said warmly. "We’ll keep in touch, yeah?" He looked over at Tor. "But not with you. I’m sick of you."

"Yeah, I think we’re on a friendship timeout." Tor nodded and turned to Chance. "Any time you want to get off the beach, come see our crick."

"River," Jake corrected. "A crick is way more narrow."

"I don’t know the difference," Chance admitted. "But I’ll come and see it." He offered his hand to Jake. "Thanks for dinner last night."

"Hey, no problem." Jake’s hand was warm in his. "I’ll do you a great barbecue next time."

"I look forward to it." Chance followed Tucker and Tor through the living room to the front door. "Text me when you get home. Have a safe flight."

"Will do." Jake tipped his hat at them both and followed Tor out. "Thanks again!"

"Bye!" Tucker called.

Chance watched out the window until he couldn’t see the truck taillights any longer. Just when he was about to move away, Tucker slipped an arm around his waist and peered out the window too. "Miss your little friend?" he teased gently.

"They just left," Chance laughed, avoiding the question.

"Seems to me you and Jake got along pretty good."

"Yeah." Chance couldn’t really deny that. "He’s got a lot going on behind that calm front."

Tucker rested his forehead on Chance’s shoulder. "Stands to reason that there’s more to Jake than what you first see. How else would him and Tor have ended up together?"

It hadn’t occurred to Chance to look at it that way. Tor had seen the hidden side of Jake the same way Tucker had seen much more than what Chance first presented to people.

A thought that had been at the edges of Chance’s mind for days made its way into a question. "Do you wish I was more like Tor?"

The answer came back instantly. "No, baby. I don’t want you to be like anyone. I want you to be serious and bossy and beach-lovin’ and a good medic. You be all those things. I wouldn’t know what to do with myself if you woke up one day bein’ more like Tor."

The words were reassuring. Chance kissed Tucker’s head and nuzzled at the silky strands of hair. "I’m ready for bed."

"Me too. But not to sleep."


If you're not familiar with Chance and Tucker OR Jake and Tor, it's probably advisable that you read their separate stories first. You can find them at the links below. A little backstory goes a long way!

Jake and Tor are HERE.

Chance and Tucker are HERE.

Both books have sequels and short stories, so if you need help finding them, let me know. And thank you for those emails! Chris and I are so excited to know that people are looking forward to this as much as we are. 


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Finding Balance

A few weeks back, someone said, "Write down a goal and then write down how you will feel when you achieve that goal." That seemed like a good idea so I did it, only I goofed. What I'd written down was really two goals in one...and I didn't achieve it. Them. Whatever. That's not to say I'm not a great deal closer to the half of the goal that is still achievable. I am. Something like 20,000 words closer, in fact. I'm not usually a big goal-setter, you see. Sure, the arbitrary, meaningless, self-imposed deadline has had its uses in my life (NaNoWriMo, anyone?), but this time I let life take precedence over such a deadline. And you know what? I'm okay with that. My mom and my bro needed help with some stuff, and I didn't get any writing done those days. That's fine. A dear friend was in town from San Diego and I didn't get a word written while she was here. That's fine, too. Because living in the moment, enjoying time with people I love, is more important than a daily word count or even an arbitrary, meaningless, self-imposed deadline. No editor or publisher is breathing down my neck for this novel. (Which is good and bad and a whole other post in itself.) I have beta readers tapping their toes impatiently, but they'll forgive the wait. The manuscript in question is winding down. It has surpassed my previous word count record by about 6,000 words (so far). It will be done when it is done with however many words it takes, and when it's done it'll go to the beta readers, and then I hope it will eventually find a home with a publisher and make it out to you.

On another subject completely (and yet not entirely unrelated), it's Bisexuality Day today. Here's an old favourite to help you celebrate. :-)

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Getting closer...

November 5 is fast approaching! If you don't know why that matters, let me tell you. (I know I've told you before, but I personally need ten reminders about things before I can vaguely recall them.)

Chris Owen and I decided a while back that it would be an interesting experiment to see what happened if two of our most popular couples happened to meet each other. Jake and Tor from Bareback and Chance and Tucker from Heat might be able to make friends, despite their obvious differences and the fact that they don't live even remotely near each other, ha.

So we experimented. And our experiment grew into something neither of us expected. Namely, a really good book. A really good book that was too long to fit into just one novel, so we wrote three. And when we finished, we realized that this was a story that people needed to read.

Unexpected love stories are the best kind.

So that's why November 5 is a date you should remember. Don't worry, Chris and I will be reminding you. If you aren't familiar with Bareback or Heat, this is your chance to pick up those stories before November 5!

Leaving you on this gorgeous Sunday with a little excerpt. Have a great one, Slashers!

Tucker piped up again. "So then how come y’all wouldn’t hang with us last night? I mean, I know I said I’d buy you a drink, but dang. The bar serves Coke, you know." He smiled at Jake, flashing a hint of dimple.

Jake looked at Tor and then at Tucker. "Well, honestly, we had to have a talk to make sure we were on the same page about a couple of things. It's something we've learned to do, no matter what, even if we have to give up a pleasant evening with people."

"He means we had to be all responsible and shit, to keep from making a mess of our holiday."

Tucker’s eyebrows drew together. "Same page. About what?"

Since Chance also wanted to know the answer, he let Tucker do the asking, even though it was bordering on none of their business.

This time it was Tor with the shrug. "About spending time with attractive men, of course. What else?"

Chance could feel his own jaw drop. That was not the answer he’d expected. He blinked at Jake, looking for confirmation.

Jake, damn him, just gave him a slow grin. "They don't have mirrors in California?"

Chance could feel Tucker’s smirk without even looking in his direction. "I, well. We, you know. That’s cool. You know. Okay, whatever." Chance groaned inwardly. Tongue-tied wasn’t a good look on him. He cleared his throat and tried again. "It was only a drink. That’s all. Not a proposition."

"Good." Both Jake and Tor suddenly seemed serious. "We'd have to say no and excuse ourselves if it was," Jake said. "We're not looking for that at all. A nice conversation, though, is always welcome."

"We were not looking for that either," Chance said. It came out a little forcefully.

"Simmer down, Cap." Tucker slid closer to him and smiled at Jake and Tor. "What Chancellor is tryin’ to say is that he noticed you, he thought you looked pretty, and that’s as far as it’s gonna go. We don’t play that game. But we do make friends. Well, I do. Chance just yells at people." Tucker squeezed Chance’s hand to soften his teasing. "All good, right?"

"All's good here," Tor said with a nod. "Our talk had very little to do with y'all, honestly, and everything to do with us."

"That's true." Jake nudged his empty plate. "You'll have to take our word for it, I guess. But seems like all four of us are on the same page, now, so how about dessert?"

"Not for me," Chance said quietly. He was still mulling over the idea that someone might have thought he and Tucker were looking for another couple to play with. The thought hadn’t even crossed Chance’s mind.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

This is not an inspirational Amish romance, Amazon!

It seems that if you write a romance featuring Amish characters, it is automatically classified as "sweet" (i.e. no sex) and "inspirational" (i.e. Christian). During the pre-order period on Amazon, A Forbidden Rumspringa has simultaneously ranked on these bestseller lists:

Books > Gay & Lesbian > Literature & Fiction > Erotica
Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Literature & Fiction > Romance > Amish
Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Romance >Inspirational > Amish

Er, that's quite a combination, Amazon! For the record, A Forbidden Rumsprina is not sweet or inspirational. There is explicit sex, and while religion plays a major role in Isaac and David's lives, this isn't a Christian romance. I suppose I might be reaching a whole new audience thanks to Amazon's algorithms, but I hope it won't end in backlash from unsuspecting readers.

I did add a note in the blurb that there's copious butt fucking and no authorial bible thumping (I might not have used those exact words), so we shall see. I've been fiddling with the keywords as well, but it seems no amount of "manlove" and "gay romance" overrides the use of the word "Amish," even if it's in the context of "gay Amish romance"!

Can two gay Amish men find happiness together? Find out September 3!
Buy now:
All Romance eBooks | Amazon | Barnes and Noble
iTunes | Kobo
a-forbidden-rumspringa-web-copyWhen two young Amish men find love, will they risk losing everything?
In a world where every detail of life—down to the width of a hat brim—is dictated by God and the all-powerful rules of the community, two men dare to imagine a different way. At 18, Isaac Byler knows little outside the strict Amish settlement of Zebulon, Minnesota, where there is no rumspringa for exploration beyond the boundaries of their insular world. Isaac knows he’ll have to officially join the church and find a wife before too long, but he yearns for something else—something he can’t name.

Dark tragedy has left carpenter David Lantz alone to support his mother and sisters, and he can’t put off joining the church any longer. But when he takes on Isaac as an apprentice, their attraction grows amid the sweat and sawdust. David shares his sinful secrets, and he and Isaac struggle to reconcile their shocking desires with their commitment to faith, family and community.

Now that they’ve found each other, are they willing to lose it all?

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