Our Spotlight is On: Karen Stivali and Moment of Truth (book interview and contest)

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MomentofTruth large cover (1) (1)

Moment of Truth (Moments in Time #2) by Karen Stivali
Release Date: March 4, 2015
Goodreads Link

About author Karen Stivali:

Karen Stivali is a prolific writer, compulsive baker and chocoholic with a penchant for books, movies, and fictional British men. She’s also the multiple award-winning author of contemporary and erotic romances. She writes novels about love…like real life, only hotter.

Karen’s lifelong fascination with people has led her to careers ranging from hand-drawn animator, to party planner, to marriage and family counselor, but writing has always been her passion. Karen enjoys nothing more than following her characters on their journey toward love. Whether the couples are m/f or m/m, it’s guaranteed that Karen’s novels are filled with food, friendship, love, and smoking hot sex—all the best things in life.

When Karen isn’t writing (and often when she is), she can be found on Twitter attempting witty banter and detailing the antics of her fruit-loving cat, BadKitteh. She loves to hear from readers (and other writers), so don’t hesitate to contact/follow/like her at the links below.

An Author Q & A with questions from our reviewer Stella:

I think I understood in the Moments In Time series there are three books. Is there a chance to know more about the characters we met in the second book? Maybe with a their own series?

Yes. The third book, Moment Of Clarity, will release in early May and it’s the conclusion of the Collin/Tanner trilogy but I am in the process of writing a few spin-off novels featuring the other characters from the Moments In Time series in lead roles. I’m hoping Jason, Quinn and Bryan will all wind up with their own books.

Why did you decide to switch to writing mm romance?

I don’t really think of it as having switched to writing mm romance. In almost all of my mf romances there were LGBT secondary characters who played significant roles. And they’re often quite scene-stealing characters. I’ve always thought it was just a matter of time until one of the LGBT characters in my head was a main character instead of a secondary character. As soon as Collin started yammering in my brain I knew it was time—he needed to tell his own story. I plan to continue writing mf and mm books and having straight and LGBT characters in both, just like real life! All I’m focused on when I’m writing is telling the story of whoever is falling in love. I’m fascinated by the act of falling in love. That’s why I write romance. It’s not about m/f or m/m, it’s about love.

Do you remember the first mm book you read?

The first book I read with a gay couple in it was actually a YA book I read when I was around 12 or 13. It was Trying Hard To Hear You, and it was a tragic story, but it really stuck with me because I thought it was so unfair and yet realistic. It made me very sad. I don’t know what the first true m/m romance I read was. There were several other books where there were m/m pairings as part of a larger cast of characters. I’ve been beta reading for Tiffany Reisz for years and she’s had several m/m couples in her books. The first full-length strictly m/m romance I read may have been Damon Suede’s HOT HEAD (which I loved).

Have you ever thought about co-writing? With whom?

I’ve not only thought about it, I’ve done it. My long time critique partner Karen Booth and I cowrote a mf romance novel years ago. We recently got the rights back and will be re-issuing it this spring with a brand new epilogue (and a beautiful cover). It’s about a British musician who comes to the US for a 3-month gig, but when he gets to the states the gig falls through. He can’t go home because he’s done an apartment swap for the 3 months and he winds up unexpectedly falling in love. This is one of the books I mentioned above because Tim, the hero, has had a gay best friend since childhood. Gavin, his best friend, is definitely a scene stealing secondary character. He’s known Tim forever and is one of those friends who’s good at cutting through the bullshit and pointing out when you’re being an ass. Gavin has his own storyline as well as he and his husband are in the process of adopting a baby. This books was originally written back in 2011 so that’s why when people ask me why I’m suddenly writing m/m couples it makes me smile. It’s not sudden. They’ve been in my stories all along.

What is the moment of the day you prefer writing or you are more inspired to write?

I’m a night owl. I don’t think clearly until later in the day and I’m at my best in the middle of the night. I probably get more creative writing done from 1am to 4am than any other time of day. I use daytime more for things like email, promo and socializing. There’s a lot more to writing than just writing and it all takes time.

I’d like to know why you chose to write about a religious theme.

That’s not an easy question to answer. I grew up in a half Catholic, half Jewish household. Both of my parents came from very strict traditional upbringings, so their marriage was….not what either family had expected. Growing up learning the beliefs and traditions of both religions but being raised as neither gave me a unique perspective. It also allowed me to see the good and bad of both religions very clearly. Of course I married someone Protestant just to add to the mix. I’ve seen religion do great and horrible things to people—in my own family, among my friends—and I’m particularly familiar with the guilt that can come along with it. Not all of my books have religious themes or characters—most don’t—but for this series it fit the characters. I’m surprised it hasn’t happened sooner in my stories. I always write about sex and religion and sex make for interesting bed partners. In the case of Moment Of Impact, Collin would be a different person if he hadn’t been raised in a strict Catholic household. He’d have different views and different problems. I think a large part of the reason he needed his story told was because of the struggles he was facing which were directly related to his upbringing and his family’s beliefs. It’s part of who he is.

Where to find the author:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/karenstivali
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/karenstivali
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/karenstivali/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5170527.Karen_Stivali
Tsu: https://www.tsu.co/KarenStivali
Blog: http://karenstivali.com

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Anna SikorskaMomentofTruth large cover (1) (1)

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press   Amazon  AmazonUK  AmazonCA
Barnes & Noble    All Romance E-books

About Moment of Truth…

Collin expected to spend another summer fixing cars and working at the college pizzeria. Instead, he’s living in a beach house on Fire Island, waiting tables at a hip seaside restaurant and, for the first time since he and Tanner got together, they can publicly be known as boyfriends. Being “out” takes some getting used to, but with the help of new and old friends, Collin is happier than he ever imagined. And more in love. But newfound freedom brings unexpected challenges, and when friends get flirty, old insecurities arise. Moments of doubt and jealousy threaten their happiness, and Collin and Tanner must confront the truth or risk losing it all.

Categories: Bisexual, Contemporary, M/M Romance, New Adult, Romance

Excerpt:

His smile twitched as he started up the next staircase. The last one. The one that led to our room and nowhere else. My hearth hammered hard and fast, and not from stair climbing. I needed to touch Tanner, soon, or every part of my body from my brain to my balls was going to simultaneously combust.

Tanner pushed our door open with exaggerated care and stepped inside. Jesus, is he trying to make me crazy?
All I want is to….

My back slammed against the wall, and before I could complete my thought, Tanner’s mouth was on mine. The kiss was savage, tongue hot and heavy against mine, cock hot and heavy against mine. Even through our shorts, I could feel how ready he was. My head swam.

Desperate for more, I grabbed on to him, rolling us toward the door and kicking it shut. Tanner let out a grunt as I pressed him against the hard wood. Could anyone hear us? I didn’t care. I just needed this. Tanner. Now.

As soon as I shoved his T-shirt up his ribs, he yanked it off and tossed it aside. Warm smooth skin greeted my fingertips, filling my nose with his scent. God, I missed this. My mouth returned to his, tongues dueling as my hands fumbled with his fly. I couldn’t stop rubbing against him enough to get the zipper down. Tanner grabbed my ass, crushing his cock alongside mine, humping against me with enough intensity I had to force myself not to come.

I didn’t want that. Not yet. Not standing against the door when that crazy big bed was only feet away. As if he read my mind, Tanner shoved me backward, taking advantage of the moment our bodies parted to strip off his shorts. I tugged off my shirt, and before I could launch it across the room, Tanner had my shorts undone and down. Kicking them away put me off-balance, and Tanner steadied me with one hand clutching the back of my neck and the other wrapped around my cock.

Whimpers echoed through the room. My whimpers. His thumb slicked over my swollen head, round and round in circles that left me dizzy and panting.

“Let’s try out the bed.” Tanner’s voice was low and thick. I’d have said yes to anything he asked with that voice.

I couldn’t actually say a word, so I nodded and pulled us down onto the mattress. Holy Jesus. Soft cool sheets, warm hard body, wet velvety tongue. Heaven. Fire Island was heaven.

Pages or Words: 150 pages

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Contest:  Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: $20 gift card. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Rafflecopter link and prize provided by Pride Promotions.

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