Heidi Cullinan and Marie Sexton On Characters, Stories, and their recent re-release Second Hand (a Tucker Springs story) (author interview)

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Second Hand by Heidi Cullinan and Marie Sexton
Dreamspinner Press

Cover art: Reese Dante

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Heidi Cullinan and Marie Sexton here today talking about their new release Second Hand.

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~ A Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with Heidi Cullinan and Marie Sexton ~

How much of yourself goes into a character?

Marie: A little piece of me goes into every single one, but how much varies from character to character. For most of them, it’s only small, random things, like their pet peeves or their favorite drink. Others have more. Trey from Family Man had a lot of my real life experiences, and Cody from Trailer Trash had a lot of my “not fitting in” teenage angst. 

Heidi: I’d agree that it’s mostly random things. I’ve had a few I identify strongly with, but no one has ever felt like a self-insert. They definitely end up with a lot of my personal stories and things I’ve witnessed/experienced, but it’s a real remix. For Second Hand, honestly, I’m the one who had El’s family making tamales, but that was all research. I’d never made them myself. Now I can make them like a pro and have had tutoring by people who know their stuff, and my tamales aren’t half bad. But at the time I wrote that, it wasn’t even borrowed from my experiences.

Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write?  Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures?

Marie: I’m going to be honest here — I despise research. My degree is in history, so it seems like something I should love, but I don’t. Which is why I mostly write contemporaries. Every time I’ve started writing something historical, I got bored and shifted it to an AU instead, largely so I could just make shit up and not have to do research. (Song of Oestend and Release being prime examples.)

Heidi: I research everything because it makes me feel grounded. I usually only write about something I have at least some familiarity with, but even then I’m always investigating. I don’t think it plays a role in my choices, but it does vary by project. Interestingly some of the least research I had to do was for Clockwork Heart, which I thought would have the most. There my biggest problem was all the dang languages.

Do you read romances, as a teenager and as an adult?

Marie: Never. Growing up, I mostly read fantasy, with a smattering of horror, scifi, and mysteries in between. Back in about 2008, I read Lynn Flewelling’s Nightrunner series. At the end of the second book, the two male protagonists become lovers, and I was blown away. So I started looking for more fantasy books with gay protagonists. I slid down a slippery slope into gay romance. I spent about a year reading every one I could get my hands on (which was only a few, really, because I was still reading paperbacks). Then, in 2009, I wrote my first book (Promises), and I haven’t read a romance since then (except for a handful that I’ve beta read for friends). These days, I primarily read thrillers and mysteries, with a bit of horror and fantasy in between.

Heidi: I started reading Harlequins in the library and sneaking them into checkout when I was a teenager, but I didn’t start formally reading romance until my choir teacher handed me A Knight in Shining Armor and told me I should read it. I really loved both the adventure and the female-centered adult story, plus the guaranteed HEA. In college I read a lot of them on the weekends after reading dead white men all week (I was an English major). Nowadays I still read romance, but I also read fantasy, Japanese fiction, and Japanese and Chinese manga and light novels.

Have you ever had to put an ‘in progress’ story aside because of the emotional ties with it?  You were hurting with the characters or didn’t know how to proceed?

Marie: Yes, I did this with Trailer Trash. I originally started it back in about 2011. But then I knew it was going to get heavy and angsty, so I put it aside for several years. I finally went back and finished it in late 2015. I loved those boys too much to leave them hanging.

Heidi: A lot of my stories take years to write because I get to spots where it’s like their a pudding that needs to set up. Sometimes I need to think about it, sometimes I need to wrestle with it, and sometimes I need to forget about it and come back. It’s never been because I was overly emotional about it, but sometimes I see what I have to do to it and think, I’m not ready for that. Antisocial was probably the most difficult. Honestly part of me wanted another six months on that one, but sometimes you have to write the book when you have to write the book. But this is why The Roosevelt series takes so long. Those books really make me sit and ponder stuff. I feel like I’ve been having an argument with David for three years now.

Do you have a favorite among your own stories?  And why?

Marie: My favorite is Song of Oestend, and its sequel, Saviours of Oestend. They have everything I love writing — friends to lovers, opposites attract, role reversal, a redeemed bad boy, and a touch of BDSM. And they have things I don’t get to write often — burly cowboys, paranormal elements, and an alternate universe setting.

Heidi: Double Blind is always my favorite, though while I wrote it Antisocial was. I began to get unwell as it was published and promoted, though, so it’s lost some of its luster for me with time. But pretty much Double Blind for life.

Have you ever had an issue in RL and worked it through by writing it out in a story?  Maybe how you thought you’d feel in a situation?

 Marie: I don’t do this often, but yes, it has happened. Back in 2012 or so, Heidi and I started writing a book together. It was supposed to be just for fun — not necessarily to publish — and without really deciding to, I ended up dumping a whole lot of myself into that. All my issues growing up with an addict, and then as an adult, watching my mother’s addiction catch up to her, seeing her in the hospital over and over again, dealing with the constant victim mentality — I dumped it all into that book. In hindsight, it was quite cathartic. And I’m glad Heidi talked me into publishing it after all. (But it’s not Second Hand. It’s the other book we wrote together — Family Man.)

 

Heidi: Yeah, I don’t set out to do it, but I talk to myself a lot while I write, and I hate chaos, so writing is a way to put order to things. The books I’m finishing up now feel to me like my way of creating a place/world I don’t know is possible to exist, yet I enjoy feeling like here, it could. I don’t try to overtly work through stuff, though. In fact, I work to avoid it. It just happens to me. I feel like if I deliberately attempt to address an issue, it comes out a mess.

 

What’s next for you as a writer?

Marie: I’m currently finishing up Spare the Rod, the third book in the Heretic Doms Club series. I have one more to write after that, to finish the series. But first, I have to squeeze in a new Tucker Springs book.

Heidi: I’m finishing up edits on the last of the Copper Point: Medical series out this year from Dreamspinner, and then I finally, finally get to write the books I was supposed to write in 2017, starting with Rebel Heart. Somewhere in there I have to write another Tucker Springs book, but I’m hoping to produce at least two indie works first. 2019 will be the Year of the New Books for me.

Check out Second Hand, revised and re-edited, re-releases on January 8, 2019 from Dreamspinner Press. We hope you enjoy it! 

Blurb:

A Tucker Springs Novel

Paul Hannon flunked out of vet school. His fiancée left him. He can barely afford his rent, and he hates his house. About the only things he has left are a pantry full of his ex’s kitchen gadgets and a lot of emotional baggage. He could really use a win—and that’s when he meets El.

Pawnbroker El Rozal is a cynic. His own family’s dysfunction has taught him that love and relationships lead to misery. Despite that belief, he keeps making up excuses to see Paul again. Paul, who doesn’t seem to realize that he’s talented and kind and worthy. Paul, who’s not over his ex-fiancée and is probably straight anyway. Paul, who’s so blind to El’s growing attraction, even asking him out on dates doesn’t seem to tip him off.

El may not do relationships, but something has to give. If he wants to keep Paul, he’ll have to convince him he’s worthy of love—and he’ll have to admit that attachment might not be so bad after all.

Tucker Springs Series

Welcome to Tucker Springs
Tucker Springs is located on the western slope of Colorado, in between Grand Junction and Silverton. One of the themes of Tucker Springs is that what you see is not what you get. Take, for example, the “springs”. Although many neighboring towns have actual hot springs, the spring here is more of a…

About the Authors:

Heidi’s Bio

Heidi Cullinan has always enjoyed a good love story, provided it has a happy ending. Proud to be from the first Midwestern state with full marriage equality, Heidi is a vocal advocate for LGBT rights. She writes positive-outcome romances for LGBT characters struggling against insurmountable odds because she believes there’s no such thing as too much happy ever after. When Heidi isn’t writing, she enjoys playing with new recipes, reading romance and manga, playing with her cats, and watching too much anime. Find out more about Heidi at heidicullinan.com.

Marie Sexton

Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Colorado Eagles and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one teenage daughter, one adorable dog, and one very stupid cat, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.

Marie also writes dark dystopian erotic fantasy under the name A.M. Sexton. You can find her at http://mariesexton.net/, and on Facebook and Twitter.

Tia Fielding on Major Influences in Writing, Characters, and her new release and series Ten (Love by Numbers #1) (author guest blog)

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Ten (Love by Numbers #1) by Tia Fielding

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Garrett Leigh

Buy link:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon  

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with Tia Fielding

Has your choice of childhood or teenage reading genres carried into your own choices for writing?

You could definitely say so. I’m Finnish, so I haven’t read a lot of the classics people read in high school in the States, for example. I had the freedom to read whatever I wanted, because my parents were and are readers.

I read a lot of fantasy, which hasn’t really carried to my own writing for some reason. I guess I’m still waiting for the inspiration for that? Creating a fantasy world of your own is tricky, and the closest I’ve really gotten are my vampire novel Technically Dead and my shifter series, Finnshifters.

I did, however, read a lot of young adult novels, horse-related stories, and definitely a lot of straight romance when I got to my teens. There’s a women’s magazine in Finland that still has a reader-submission based part where people could send their sexual fantasies. Really explicit stuff. I started to read that in secret when I was around… 12, maybe.

I wonder if that over-exposition to erotica led to my not being too keen on erotica now? Or not really writing sex for the sake of sex?

In any case, I read a lot of romance especially in my teen years. Carolyn Cookson was my hero for some reason, back then. I don’t write historicals, it’s not my genre even as a reader these days, but the romance stuck, at least!

Who do you think is your major influence as a writer?  Now and growing up?

My favorite book of all time is Donna Tartt’s The Secret History. That book has no extra words. The language is very exact and measured, and yes she might’ve written it in something like a decade, so definitely not something I could do, but it still left a mark.

Now, you have to remember I’m not a native English speaker, so my writing will always be different because of that. I did start to read in English more in my twenties, which has helped, but until that, my influences would’ve been different, less language based.

I was first published when I’d just turned thirty, and I have to say that the influence that got me to that point were all the awesome fan fiction writers around me in fandom spaces on the internet. I got some courage to write fan fiction and then to try being published, and somehow here I am soon eight years later, still going strong!

Do you have a favorite among your own stories?  And why?

Is it cliché or fake sounding if I say the new series? Love by Numbers, of which Ten is the first book, is turning into a labor of love for me. The characters and the town I’ve  created for them has wrapped me around their little fingers extremely tightly.

The next book in the series, called Four, is going to be out sometime during the summer this year, by the way. So if you like the people of Acker, Wisconsin, as much as I do, don’t worry, there’ll be more to come soon!

Do you think you can bring too many faults into a character that eventually it becomes too flawed to become a love interest?

I chuckled when I saw this question, to be honest. I’ve literally started to write book number three today, and one of the main characters from that one is tricky to redeem, let’s put it like that. I love him to bits, he’s so complex, but it’s breaking my heart a little, writing him. Redeeming him to the reader, let alone the characters in the series, is going to be… interesting.

With so much going on in the world today, do you write to explain?  To get away?  To move past?  To widen our knowledge?  Why do you write?

 I write to show a different-from-the-norm kind of life. That people can be different and still become happy and safe and loved. They can overcome obstacles of many kinds and still find a family to belong in, people to surround themselves with, and that forever kind of love most people dream of.

Hopefully my stories give the reader a way to escape their daily life for a little bit, and if I manage to give them something to think about, then I’ve definitely done my job well!

Blurb:

Can two broken men build one life?

Ten years.

That’s what Makai lost for a crime he didn’t commit. He’s been exonerated, but the abuse he suffered in prison isn’t so easy to leave behind. He heads to the one place he remembers being happy: Acker, Wisconsin, where he spent summers with his grandpa. Unfortunately, not everyone wants Makai there.

Ten days.

That’s how long Emil, now twenty-one, was held prisoner as a teenager. The mental and physical injuries he suffered at the hands of a drug trafficking ring still haunt him.

Nightmares, anxiety, and PTSD challenge the connection forming between Makai and Emil, though together, they might find a way to move beyond their pain and into a future—and a relationship—that both had thought impossible.

Now they just have to convince Emil’s father, the town sheriff. It won’t be easy with danger closer than they know….

 

About the Author 

Tia Fielding is a Finnish LGBTQ+ romance author. She lives in a small middle-of-nowhere town surrounded by nature and silence, just like she prefers. Tia identifies as genderqueer, but isn’t fussy about pronouns, because her native language doesn’t have gender-specific ones. She’s a lover of caffeine, sarcasm, peppermint, cats and dogs, sleeping and witty people.

 

Social Media:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/authortiafielding/

Patreon – https://www.patreon.com/tiafielding

Twitter – https://twitter.com/tiafielding

Elizabeth Noble On Ebooks, Writing, and her new release Whiskey and Moonshine (author guest post)

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Whiskey and Moonshine by Elizabeth Noble

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Alexandria Corza

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Elizabeth Noble here today on tour with her latest release Whiskey and Moonshine.  Welcome, Elizabeth.

 

 

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with Elizabeth Noble

Hello and welcome to another stop on my Whiskey and Moonshine tour. Thank you so much for everyone at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words for hosting me today. They asked me a few questions!

Do you feel there’s a tight line between Mary Sue or should I say Gary Stu and using your own experiences to create a character?

I think when writing a book there are many instances where, as a writer, my own experiences influence the plot. There are times I don’t even realize what I’ve done! I don’t believe I’ve ever set out to write a story based on some part of my life. However, we all have different experiences in life and some of those details work their way into a story. There are little things, such as I almost always have a character with certain likes and dislikes similar or the same as mine. I don’t necessarily consider this as inserting myself into the story in the way a Mary Sue would be.

Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write?  Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures?

I write in the genres I write because those are the ones I love reading the most. I enjoy research maybe a little too much but it’s the other way around. I pick the genre then I do the research, formulate a plot and develop characters to fit within that genre. Even with world building and creating new cultures there is a certain amount of research that’s needed.

Has your choice of childhood or teenage reading genres carried into your own choices for writing?

Yes, very much so. I’ve always enjoyed scifi and mysteries and as a child those were amongst my preferred books. I don’t like horror, so the discovery of urban fantasy made me happy. I think I got into that genre a little later in life.

Do you like HFN or HEA? And why?

I’m not a fan of tragedies and am definitely a person who needs a good outcome to a story. The HFN or HEA doesn’t have to be flowers and weddings, but I want everyone happy by the end of the story.

How do you feel about the ebook format and where do you see it going?

I love ebooks and ezines! It’s great to have one device, whether it be a phone, Kindle or tablet, with the ability to store all sorts of reading materials. I get my newspapers that way too. Convenience isn’t the only aspect that matters to me. With eBooks there is no need for massive amounts of paper or physical storage space and of course, shipping anywhere is free. It’s really a more environmentally sound choice. As technology improves and more people develop more of a proficiency with that tech I think eBooks, ezines, digital newspapers will become more of the standard.

How do you choose your covers?  (curious on my part)

The covers for the Dreamspun Desires books are stylized, so there were far fewer choices to be made. I like to have something on the cover represent the story as a whole. In this case it’s the whiskey barrels in the background. I try to match cover models to at least one character

Do you have a favorite among your own stories?  And why?

I’d have to say Quarry from The Vampire Guard series and Collared Souls from Sentries would be my two most favorite stories. In both books I was able to delve more deeply into the characters and their worlds while filling in some backstory. They were fun and satisfying books to write.

What’s next for you as an author?

I’m alternating between an urban fantasy/romantic suspense series and a contemporary romantic suspense series.

The urban fantasy series is called El Corazon. It revolves around a family of werewolves, one of whom is a bounty hunter. In the series there are four different types of magical humans and I plan one book for each type. I hope to have book one, Scintilla, out later this year.

The romantic suspense series is called Gang of Thieves and the heroes don’t always live inside the law.

 

Blurb: 

Drunk on love.

Like a well-aged whiskey, master distiller and old-money entrepreneur Malone Kensington is elegant and refined. Unfortunately he’s also a perfectionist who is more dedicated to the success of his generations-old company than his own love life.

That company needs a public spokesman.

What Colton Hale lacks in sophistication, he more than makes up for with the charisma that’s allowed him to survive on the street from a young age and charm his way into the lucrative—if overwhelming—public position at the Kensington Distillery. When Mal takes Colt under his wing, hoping to polish off his rough edges, opposites attract and a passionate romance blossoms despite the differences in age and background. But can it survive a Kensington Board of Directors who believe Colt is nothing but a gold digger and a kidnapper determined to profit from the love of Mal’s life—dead or alive?

Excerpt:

Mal climbed down from the SUV and waited for Colt. “We have to be back at the studio in—” He glanced at his watch. “—six hours. I’m going to bed.”

“Okay,” Colt agreed brightly. As they rode the elevator to their floor, Colt said, “I think I liked the spiced cranberry the best. But damn, I understand why you drink the nonalcoholic stuff most of the time. We probably shouldn’t have sampled so many flavors.”

“Hmm, got that right,” Mal whispered.

When they left the elevator, Colt stumbled, and Mal grabbed him around the waist to steady him. Colt put one hand on Mal’s chest and smiled, sending warmth spreading through him from where Colt’s hand rested. Mal’s room was closer to the elevator, and Colt leaned against the door, searching his pockets. “I think I lost my keycard.”

Mal swiped his own card through the door lock. When it opened, Colt fell backward into the room. He would have landed flat on his ass had Mal not darted forward, grabbing him again.

“You sorta like taking hold of me so I don’t fall,” Colt murmured and leaned in close enough their lips almost touched.

“You’re sorta uncoordinated.” Mal skimmed his lips over Colt’s cheek.

Winding one arm around Mal, Colt inched closer. “I’m drunk. That doesn’t count.” He licked so lightly over Mal’s ear it made Mal shudder.

Mal kicked the door shut, then turned Colt so he was trapped against it by Mal’s presence. Colt hauled Mal closer and dipped his head so he could kiss Mal’s neck and trail his lips over Mal’s jaw.

About the Author

Mystery, action, chills, and thrills spiced with romance and desire. ELIZABETH NOBLE started telling stories before she actually knew how to write, and her family was very happy when she learned to put words on a page. Those words turned into books and fan fiction that turned into a genuine love of M/M fiction. Being able to share her stories is really a dream come true. She has a real love for a good mystery complete with murder and twisty plots as well as all things sci-fi, futuristic, and supernatural.

Elizabeth has three grown children and is now happily owned by an adorable mixed breed canine princess, a spunky Cardigan Welsh Corgi and their sidekick, tabby cat. She lives in her native northeast Ohio, the perfect place for gardening, winter and summer sports (go Tribe and Cavs!). When she’s not writing she’s working as a veterinary nurse, so don’t be surprised to see her men with a pet or three who are a very big part of their lives.

Elizabeth has received a number of amateur writing awards. Since being published, several of her novels have received Honorable Mentions in the Rainbow Awards. Jewel Cave was a runner-up in the Gay Mystery/Thriller category in the 2015 Rainbow Awards. Ringed Love was a winner in the Gay Fantasy Romance category of the 2016 Rainbow Awards.

 

 

Website (please include at least this link)  http://www.elizabeth-noble.com

E-Mail: elizabeth.noble19@gmail.com

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E.J. Russell on the second in their Enchanted Occasions series, Devouring Flame (guest post and giveaway)

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Devouring Flame by E.J. Russell

Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson

Buy links:

Amazon: http://ejr.pub/devouring-flame-amz

Other: http://ejr.pub/devouring-flame-b2r

Publisher: http://ejr.pub/fb-devouring-flame

 

 

 

Thank you so much for helping me celebrate the release of Devouring Flame! At the end of the tour, I’ll be giving away a prize—a $25 Dreamspinner gift card plus one of my backlist titles—to one commenter (chosen at random across all the tour posts), so please be sure to join the conversation!

Devouring Flame is the second book in my series centered around the employees of Enchanted Occasions Event Planning, where the word “enchanted” is quite literally, er, literal. The EO staff are all outcast from their supernatural home realms, most of them because they’re aitchers (short for half-and-half), part human and part other, and discriminated against by Pures of all races. But they’ve found a community with their EO co-workers, and job satisfaction staging magical events for their clients.

Of course, sometimes those events get… complicated. 🙂

The Vampire Conundrum

Until last year, even though I’d written a dozen books—three quarters of them paranormal—I’d never written one involving vampires. Then, by an odd coincidence, I ended up writing two at the same time.

Each was from a different paranormal romantic comedy series: my November release, Vampire with Benefits, is book two in my Supernatural Selection trilogy, and my current release, Devouring Flame, is the second Enchanted Occasions story. And the way I ended up treating the vampire mythos in each book was vastly different.

For one thing, in Vampire With Benefits, one of the main characters is a vampire, involved in a fake marriage scheme with an inactive beaver shifter. In Devouring Flame, however, vampires are side characters—treated as a group rather than individually—and are more of an annoyance and impediment to our co-heroes than participants in a love story of their own.

Consequently, I got to develop the rules for two different vampire worlds, which was great fun. The Supernatural Selection books belong in what I call my paranormal romantic comedy genre, but Enchanted Occasions veers more toward the screwball than just rom-com. Consequently, the Vampire With Benefits world is a little more serious than the one in Devouring Flame.

In VWB, all the vampires, with the exception of two who were Turned in America, are from Eastern Europe, and their society is still more or less feudal.

In Devouring Flame, the vampires behave more like a global corporation, with an annual conference (which Enchanted Occasions Event Planning has been hired to present), including sensitivity training sessions, officer elections, and bylaws review.

One of the things I felt pretty strongly about was that I didn’t want there to be any danger of a vampire population explosion. I wanted both series to have a limitation on creating new vampires, a moratorium, so that the population remained fixed. However, the reasons for the moratorium vary between the series.

In SS, the moratorium was imposed by the fae and druids, in exchange for evacuating the vampires from Europe after World War I.

In EO, the moratorium was instigated in 2007 with the publication of Twilight, because, to quote Smith, one of the heroes in Devouring Flame:

“Too many moony teenagers with unrealistically romantic notions about what it means to be undead. All the vamps started freaking out. They might be bloodsucking, egomaniacal sociopaths, but they’re not pedophiles. At least that’s what their PR team claims.”

For amusement, the SS vampires conduct themselves like the aristocracy they once were, attending sophisticated cocktail parties dressed in impeccable evening wear. The EO vampires, on the other hand, like vast, noisy costume balls, in which they cosplay as themselves—that is, as any version of “vampire” portrayed in human film or literature.

Another difference: the SS vampires can only smell and taste viable food sources (in other words, people whose blood will be appetizing and nourishing for them). They can’t taste or smell anything else, which means there’s little point for them to try. I sort of sidestep the issue of whether or not they actually could if they wanted to.

The EO vampires on the other hand… For one day out of every century, because of a spell in certain Interstitial sites, they can consume human food again. It’s their Centennial Feast, and Enchanted Occasions is staging that as well.

Since they have only twenty-four hours to eat—before waiting another hundred years—the vampires have a really, really, really long list of menu requirements. Because, as Mikos, Enchanted Occasions’ owner, says in response to Smith’s question about what vampires eat:

“When they’re only able to eat once every hundred years? Everything they possibly can.”

So what about you? If you had to pick a once-in-a-century menu, what would be on it?

Devouring Flame

An Enchanted Occasions story

Reunited and reignited.

While cutting through the Interstices—the post-creation gap between realms—Smith, half-demon tech specialist for Enchanted Occasions Event Planning, spies the person he yearns for daily but dreads seeing again: the ifrit, Hashim of the Windrider clan.

On their one literally smoldering night together, Smith, stupidly besotted, revealed his true name—a demon’s greatest vulnerability. When Hashim didn’t return the favor, then split the next morning with no word? Message received, loud and clear: Thanks but no, thanks.

Although Hashim had burned to return Smith’s trust, it was impossible. The wizard who conjured him holds his true name in secret, and unless Hashim discovers it, he’ll never be free.

When their attraction sparks once more, the two unite to search for Hashim’s hidden name—which would be a hell of a lot easier if they didn’t have to contend with a convention full of food-crazed vampires on the one day out of the century they can consume something other than blood.

But if they fail, Hashim will be doomed to eternal slavery, and their reignited love will collapse in the ashes.

Luckily Smith is the guy who gets shit done. And Hashim is never afraid to heat things up.

About the Author

E.J. Russell–grace, mother of three, recovering actor–writes romance in a rainbow of flavors. Count on high snark, low angst and happy endings. 

Reality? Eh, not so much.

E.J.’s paranormal romantic comedy, The Druid Next Door, was a 2018 RITA® finalist. She’s married to Curmudgeonly Husband, a man who cares even less about sports than she does. Luckily, C.H. also loves to cook, or all three of their children (Lovely Daughter and Darling Sons A and B) would have survived on nothing but Cheerios, beef jerky, and Satsuma mandarins (the extent of E.J.’s culinary skill set).

E.J. lives in rural Oregon, enjoys visits from her wonderful adult children, and indulges in good books, red wine, and the occasional hyperbole.

Contact info:

Email: ejr@ejrussell.com

Website: http://ejrussell.com

Newsletter: http://ejrussell.com/newsletter

Facebook reader group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/reality.optional

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/E.J.Russell.author

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/ej_russell

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/e-j-russell

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ej_russell

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ej_russell_author

 

Giveaway

The author is offering a giveaway prize—a $25 Dreamspinner gift card plus one of their backlist titles—to one commenter (chosen at random across all the tour posts) at the end of the tour

Marguerite Labbe on the Struggles with Addiction and her new story ‘A Whole Latte Sass (Geek Life #2)’

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A Whole Latte Sass (Geek Life #2) by Marguerite Labbe

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Kanaxa

Buy Links:  Dreamspinner Press  |  Amazon  |   Barnes & Noble 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Marguerite Labbe here today to talk about the next story in her Geek LIfe series, A Whole Latte Sass.  Welcome, Marguerite!

 

 

Hello everyone. It’s great to be back at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words. When I write, I like a mix of the serious and the humorous. I like to touch on topics that have affected me personally. For years I’ve wanted to write a main character who was a recovering addict, but it was always either too close to home or I just didn’t feel as I could do my best by him at the time. Then Trask Briscoe came along and I knew he was the one.

Trask had a rough start in life. His parents were addicts and his home was not a safe environment to be in. He did have his Grandmother though. She’s the one who gave him love and discipline in equal measure. She is the only one from his home that he thinks of with affection and respect. But that didn’t stop him from starting to use too. And when he left home, running as far as he could to the east coast, that demon followed him.

Addiction is a fact of life in my family as it is in so many other families, though people often don’t want to talk about it. I was sixteen years old when my mom went into rehab for drug use. I attended Alateen sessions for years. There’s a condition called “dry drunk” that can persist even after a person stops using. It’s where they continue the same behaviors and attitudes they had while they were using. Living with that is as bad as living with the addict. Though, my mom got clean, she might as well have been using for many more years before her time in therapy, rehab, and AA meetings started to make a profound change within her. She’s so strong and even now with almost thirty years of being clean she still goes to AA meetings and she’s a much more happy and stable person than before.

Trask had his ups and downs too. His road to getting clean was not an easy one and it’s why he clings so hard to his rules and the path he’s on. He’s utterly committed to staying off the drugs and alcohol. He’s very aware of the dangers of having “just one” as that “just one” bit him on the ass after being clean for over a year. I’ve seen people in the AA rooms who had five years sobriety and that one drink sent them on a tailspin. And I’ve also seen them have the amazing courage to stand up and collect that 24 hour chip after using again. I’ve lost people to this disease and so has Trask and I’ve also watched people transform their lives for the better.

My sister drank for years, hiding it from everyone. All the signs were there, but it’s so hard to see it sometimes. I ask myself how I could’ve missed it as do my parents and other siblings. I knew her history as a teenager. I worked at a rehab center for years. I missed it. We all missed it until we couldn’t any longer. So we staged an intervention and she went to AA for two years claiming the entire time she wasn’t an alcoholic until she was ready to face it. Her husband at the time didn’t believe alcoholism was really a disease and that caused other problems. It’s hard to quit when your SO thinks it’s only a matter of control. During the divorce she didn’t start drinking again, but she started using like mom, sleeping pills, antianxiety pills, anything she could get her hands on, until she hit a bottom on that one and crawled her way back out of the pit. She has a new husband who supports her whole-heartedly and her life is going in a new direction.

I have so much respect for the both of them. And there were times when I wrote scenes with Trask that I just cried because I recognized his struggle. I wanted to get it right and even with as much as I know it’s not the same as having gone through it. My sister read his scenes for me and gave me her input and her and my mom’s permission to talk about it. They are two tough beautiful ladies and a constant reminder to me not to let the statistics take your courage away. There are here and today they are clean. They provide leadership within their NA/AA circles and have made lifelong friends who know exactly what they are going through.

So if you, or anyone you love is struggling with addiction, please know that those circles work. I’ve seen them work. I’ve felt the energy and love there as well as the kind of firm, no nonsense accountability that everyone needs from time to time. And if you ever want a non-judgmental ear, I will be blessed to answer any email. Blessings to you all this New Year.

Excerpt

*  *  *

“I don’t know why you didn’t tell them to fuck off,” Felipe fumed as they made their way to the truck.

Trask had been tempted. He hated being judged, hell, even when he deserved it. It got his hackles up every time. And times like this, when he didn’t deserve it, it dug under his skin even more, making his temper simmer. “What would it have solved other than drive a deeper wedge?” Dammit, he hated uncomfortable family situations, hated them with a holy passion. He slid behind the wheel and rested his head back against the seat. “And damned if I can’t see their point.”

“Don’t you fucking dare take their side.” Felipe twisted to face him. “All I asked was for them to give you a chance, not jump all over you. I don’t care about the twenty years between us. And dammit, your past has made you the man you are today. So yeah, it fucking sucked, and you put yourself in some shitty places, but you got yourself out of them too.”

Trask shook his head and started the truck. Felipe had his points, but if Trask was a dad, he was pretty sure he’d have serious reservations about a forty-year-old man hooking up with his son or daughter.

Felipe huffed out a breath and let out a few more choice oaths. His phone rang, and he ignored it. “So you said you inherited the money for the store. Who from? I thought you and your family didn’t get along.”

Trask sensed that Felipe was asking more out of a need to distract himself than curiosity, but he had to stop dodging the questions or giving only partial answers. Might as well tell all tonight. There was no reason to hold back anymore.

“My grandmother, but I had to be clean to collect on it. And man, I wanted that chance. I wanted her to see that I could build on what she left me. That I wouldn’t be like my parents. I wanted her to be proud of me. So I found myself a program, got clean, showed up back in Texas a year later with my paperwork, test results. Pissed my old man off to no end. He was hoping to contest her will and take the money for himself.” Trask sighed and scrubbed a hand through his hair.

“How long did you stay clean after that?” Felipe asked softly.

“Almost another seven months.” Trask shook his head, his hands tightening on the wheel. “Once I’d bought the place, got everything settled, inventory in stock and the initial flurry of activity was over, I convinced myself that one drink to celebrate wouldn’t hurt anybody. I could handle one damn drink. Goddamn, I was wrong.”

Trask had zero recollection of the next few nights. “All I know is that I finally came out of it several days later, naked in some damn flophouse, with a shit taste in my mouth, fresh track marks, and too many bruises.”

He glanced over to find Felipe watching him with wide, solemn eyes. “And a whole shit pile of shame and guilt?”

Trask nodded. “You nailed it, and I couldn’t face it, so I went right back to using. I couldn’t face her memory, knowing how upset it would make her if she saw me.”

Felipe caught Trask’s hand and lifted it, studying his knuckles before laying a kiss on them. “Maybe for a while, but you found the strength to fight it back again and again until you were able to say you have almost sixteen years clean. You ever think that your grandmother looked at you and didn’t see a man who kept failing but instead saw the man who kept picking himself up to wage that war again?”

Trask’s throat tightened to an unbearable ache. He’d never looked at it quite that way, but knowing his grandmother the way he had, yeah, he could see that. Felipe opened up such a wellspring in him sometimes, emotions that had been shunted aside so he could deal with the day-to-day, that the intensity of allowing himself those feelings almost physically hurt. He tugged Felipe to him. “You’re incredible, you know that?” he asked as Felipe wound his arm around Trask’s shoulder. “She would’ve loved the hell out of you.”

Blurb:

It’s no secret cosplayer Felipe Suero is looking for his happily ever after—in his love life as well as his career. He’s getting his degree so he can quit his miserable job and start his own costume business. Now he just needs to land the sexiest silver fox to ever attend a con.

Trask Briscoe’s life revolves around staying clean and sober, running the Magick Den, and attending local cons. His rules haven’t left much room for romance. But he can’t deny Felipe has caught his complete attention. He’s just not sure what he can offer a man so full of joy and sass.

When Trask finally accepts Felipe’s offer for a cup of coffee, he soon finds himself on a second date and a third. Between cosplay projects and roleplaying games, they discover a deeper connection than either of them expected. And Trask realizes that sometimes rules are made to be broken.

Now Felipe just has to convince his family—and Trask—that Trask has more love to offer than he ever dreamed.

About the Author

Marguerite Labbe loves writing stories about the beauty of love and the strength of family, whether it’s the family you’re born into or the one you create. She married her next-door neighbor and best friend, and they have one son, one dog, and two cats who rule them all. She has finally converted her Alabama born husband into being a Red Sox fan and now only needs to convince her son. She runs Apocrypha Comics Studio with her husband and they often trek off to comic book conventions on the weekend where they celebrate all manner of geek culture.

Social Media:

Author website: http://margueritelabbe.blogspot.com/

Twitter handle: @MargueriteLabbe

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/marguerite.labbe.3

Julia Talbot on Bad Boys, Weird Shifters and her new release ‘Fox and Wolf (Apex Investigations #1)’  (author guest post)

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Fox and Wolf (Apex Investigations #1) by Julia Talbot

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Kanaxa

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Julia Talbot here in the new year.  Welcome, Julia.

 

 

 

Hey y’all!

I’m Julia Talbot, and I’m here to talk about my new novella Fox and Wolf, which is book one in the Apex Investigations series.

Raise your hand if you love weird shifters.

Now, while the weirdest shifter in the PI unit at APEX Investigations is a Brazilian jaguar, the bad guys in this one are weird.

WEIRD.

A tiger is the leader, but his henchmen. Dire croc shifters. Dire meaning they’re caught kinda halfway between man and croc. They stink. They’re not real bright. They like water. They can destroy a building in short order.

Very bad guys.

I do love matching the shifter to their animal counterparts. I think of crocs as basically dinosaurs with little care for human law. It was really interesting writing them and seeing how they would deal with a bunch of other predators.

It was even more interesting taking a bunch of APEX predators and lowering them on the food chain.

I hope y’all will check it out!

XXOO

Julia

Blurb:

Apex Investigations: Book One

Werewolf PI Dylan Weems is a hired to solve the murder of a client’s customer. As an ex-cop, Dylan is the perfect man for the job, but he doesn’t expect the complication of alluring fox shifter Rey.

Ever since finding the dead body of one of his clients, Rey Mercier’s life is a mess, and he needs help desperately. He has no idea why he’s the target of some ruthless people or what he did to anger them. Hopefully Dylan and his motley crew of shifters at Apex Investigations can help him find out, but first Dylan and Rey have to deal with literal corporate tigers and dire crocodiles shifters… all while deciding what to do about the mate bond that’s becoming undeniable. And is that even possible between fox and wolf?


Buy link (preorder) at Dreamspinner Press.

About the Author

Stories that leave a mark. Julia Talbot loves romance across all the genders and genres, and loves to write about people working to see past the skin they’re in to love what lies beneath. Julia Talbot lives in the great mountain and high desert Southwest, where there is hot and cold running rodeo, cowboys, and everything from meat and potatoes to the best Tex-Mex. A full time author, Julia has been published by Dreamspinner, All Romance Ebooks, and Changeling Press. She believes that everyone deserves a happy ending, so she writes about love without limits, where boys love boys, girls love girls, and boys and girls get together to get wild, especially when her crazy paranormal characters are involved. She also writes BDSM and erotic romance as Minerva Howe. Find Julia at @juliatalbot on Twitter, or at www.juliatalbot.com

Links

Website: http://www.juliatalbot.com

FB : https://www.facebook.com/juliatalbotauthor

FB page:  https://www.facebook.com/juliatalbotwriterpage/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/juliatalbot

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/juliatalbotwrites

J.P. Barnaby on a Conversation with her Character and her new novel Saving Hannah (author guest blog)

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Saving Hannah by J.P. Barnaby

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Tiferet Design

Release Date:  December 18, 2018
Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press  | Amazon

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host J.P. Barnaby here today on tour for her latest novel, Saving Hannah.  Welcome, J.P.

 

A Chat with Hannah Aberthol

Saving Hannah, while a romantic suspense, is at its core—a love story. It’s a love story between two men and a little girl. Hannah has leukemia and her father, Thomas, will do anything to get her the medical care she needs. Aleks has loved Thomas since college and wants to help them both. Along with the suspenseful elements, there is a lot of love.

I thought it would be fun to sit down with little Hannah and talk about her role in the book, her relationship with her father, and how she feels about the developments in their relationship.

JP: Hi Hannah, thanks for sitting down with me today.

Hannah: Hello. It’s nice to see you again. Daddy said you helped us become a family.

JP: Well, I just wrote it down. That was all your daddy and Aleks.  They’re good guys.

Hannah: Meemaw said Daddy is a good man who did a bad thing. Aleks is a good man too. He helped me with the doctors and medicine and stuff.

JP: How are you feeling, Hannah?

Hannah: Way better. Daddy says I can go to school soon.

JP: That’s great! Are you looking forward to that?

Hannah: Yeah, I just wish my hair were longer. They’re gonna make fun of me.

JP: Tell them you were in a rock band and shaved your head.

Hannah: That’s silly. And a lie. Daddy said we’re only supposed to lie about certain things.

JP: That’s got to be a scary thing.

Hannah: Yeah. I’m scared I’m going to mess up and something bad will happen.

JP: Tell you what, if I don’t write it—it won’t happen. And I won’t write something bad happening to you. Does that make it better?

Hannah: You can do that?

JP: Yep.

Hannah: You’re the bestest ever! I’m gonna go tell Daddy and Aleks. See you later!

Blurb

Thomas Aberthol’s luck has run out. His daughter, Hannah, needs a miracle he can’t deliver. A hacker with a felony record, Thomas has little chance of finding work that will provide the care she needs. Out of money, out of options, and out of hope, he throws himself on the mercy of someone he never thought to see again.

Even after ten years, Aleksander Sanna still dreams of that drunken kiss. A perfect moment in time when Thomas wanted him. In his world of elegant code and high finance, the picture he holds of Thomas torments him in the dark of night.

Their worlds collide as Thomas interviews for the job he so desperately needs with the company Aleks inherited from his father. Thomas doesn’t get the position, but Aleks offers him a completely different kind of proposal, one suited to Thomas’s unique talents… one that will change the course of both their lives.

 

About author J.P. Barnaby

JP Barnaby is an award-winning contemporary romance and romantic suspense novelist with over a dozen novels. Her heart and soul, the Survivor Series, has been heralded by USA Today as one of their favorites. She recently moved from Chicago to Atlanta to appease her Camaro (Jake) who didnít like the blustery winters. JP specializes in recovery romance but slips in a few erotic or comedic stories to spice things up. When sheís not working on her latest novel, she binge watches superheroes and crime dramas on Netflix with her husband and Jack Russell Terror, Chase.

Sign up for her newsletter and try a free story: https://bit.ly/2xSB8kE

 

B.A. Tortuga on Christmas and her new story Stetsons and Stakeouts (author guest post)

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Stetsons and Stakeouts by B.A. Tortuga
Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Alexandria Corza.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have BA Tortuga here talking about her  Christmas prep and her new story, Stetsons and Stakeouts. Welcome, BA.

Hey y’all! I’m BA Tortuga, resident redneck and lover of all things Christmas!

Okay, so I’m supposed to be all promotion-girl, but y’all.

Christmas!

I know, bad author.

Sue me.

*grins*

So, I’m the woman with the menagerie on the front porch (light up basset, yorkie, narwhal, bull rider, yeti, shark, owl, rhino…), Christmas music blaring, dogs running in and out. It’s hell being my neighbor.

EXCEPT!

I cook.

So far I’ve delivered pecan pie, dinner rolls, glazed pecans, and chocolate cherry snowballs.

I’ve received baklava (homemade phyllo, y’all!), meat pies, hummus, and Swiss chocolate.

Tomorrow I’m making chili and cornbread to take next door on one side and ginger cookies for the couple on the other side.

I wish y’all a happy holiday season and many goodies.

Much love, y’all,

BA

Stetsons and Stakeouts Official Blurb:

Gianni Cesare is a DEA agent and rancher—who also happens to be a millionaire heir to an Italian count. Running a multiagency sting out of his East Texas ranch means he needs a new foreman… preferably someone a little wet behind the ears who won’t ask too many questions.

Gianni’s Aunt Jerilyn hires Bonner Fannin, a roughstock rider with zero ranch experience and a sister who’s pregnant with a violent biker’s twins. If that’s not bad enough, Bonner is pretending he and his sister are married to protect her and to help get him the job.

Gianni didn’t think Bonner was the marrying type during their torrid beach affair years ago, but he’s not sure if he has time to explore that thought now, as overrun as his ranch is with drug cartels, macho government agents, and local cops. Looks like Bonner and Gianni are both in over their heads, and they may have to band together during this adventure to swim rather than sink.

About BA Tortuga 

Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.

Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the  high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.

You can find BA at:

Website: http:www.batortuga.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/batortuga

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

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/batortuga/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/batortuga

Blogger: http://batortuga.blogspot.com/

Instagram: https://instagram.com/batortuga/

Tumblr: http://batortuga.tumblr.com/

Andrew Grey on Older Main Characters and his new release New Tricks (guest blog and excerpt)

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New Tricks by Andrew Grey

Cover Artist: Adrian Nicholas

Publisher: DreamSpinner Press

Release Date: Dec 11 2018

Book Links

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

DreamSpinner Press

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Andrew Grey on tour for his new release New Tricks. Welcome, Andrew!

✒︎
I recently turned 55 and as I have gotten a little older, I‘ve wanted to write stories about guys that are close to my own age.  I’m not denying that there isn’t something very intriguing about that flush of first love, or pretty amazing about a person discovering who they are and how love and happiness can fit in their lies.  But there is also something pretty amazing to discover that later in life, there is still the chance for someone to find true love.  I have been very blessed with a relationship that has lasted for the last 25 years.   But there are many men who don’t find that one person who is special for them until much later in life and I wanted to celebrate that.   That’s a good part of the reason why I wrote New Tricks. Whether we’re young or older, we can all get set in our ways and sometimes we all need to teach the old dog a few New Tricks.

Blurb/Synopsis

In matters of the heart, there’s no such thing as business as usual.

Thomas Stepford spent years building a very successful business and now at thirty-nine, he wants a quieter life. With his parents needing help, he decides to return home. He can’t get away from business completely and needs an assistant—but the man who is hired isn’t quite what he had in mind.

Brandon Wilson, the ink on his degree barely dry, needs a job, and his mother helps him get one as Mr. Stepford’s assistant. Thomas doesn’t seem to remember, but Brandon worked mowing the stunningly attractive older man’s lawn years ago. Thomas was Brandon’s teenage fantasy, and now he’s Brandon’s boss.

Thomas and Brandon are both determined to keep their relationship strictly business, but the old attraction is still there. They learn to work together even as the tension between them reaches the boiling point. But just as they start to surrender, Thomas’s old life in New York calls him. Even if he resists that pull, can their newfound relationship survive when Brandon receives the call of his dreams… from Hollywood?

Series: Standalone

Genre: M/M Contemporary Romance

Edition/Format: 1st Edition/Format ~ eBook & Print

)

Excerpt

Brandon stepped inside and his eyes watered. He blinked to try to keep his reaction at bay, but it didn’t do very much. The house had been closed up because of the air-conditioning, and the dog dander had had a chance to really build up. All Brandon could hope for was that he wasn’t inside too long and could get out before his reaction became too severe and he was reduced to a sneezing mess.

Mr. Stepford closed the door. “What’s this?” he asked, looking at the plate Brandon was carrying.

“My grandmother sent these over for your mom.” He was about to hand the plate to Mr. Stepford when he sneezed loudly.

The dogs yipped and the plate went flying out of his hands. Brandon groaned as the plastic wrap gave way and cookies flew in every direction. The plate shattered on the floor, and bits of cookie ended up everywhere.

What a way to make a first impression.

Brandon wanted to crawl under the sofa and hide, but that would only send his allergies into overdrive.

“Buddy, Clementine, go in the other room.” They ignored him, and Mr. Stepford scooped both dogs into his arms and went out back to let them outside.

Brandon sneezed again and wondered how he could clean up the mess he’d made.

“Look, I’m sorry.” He could feel the job that he’d thought he had slipping out of his grasp. “Let me help clean this up.” He sneezed again, the sound echoing through the house.

“It’s all right. Give me a minute.” Mr. Stepford got a trash can and threw everything, including the pieces of the plate, in it. Then he got out the vacuum, which only seemed to add more dust to the air. Brandon left the room and sat at the kitchen table until Mr. Stepford was done. “Okay. I’m going to guess that you’re allergic.”

Brandon nodded. He turned to where two small doggie faces peered in the sliding glass doors. “Sorry. I didn’t know or I’d have taken some medication.” The stuff made him sleepy as hell and dried him out to the point that he felt like a desert, but it got him through when he needed it.

“How about we go outside?” Mr. Stepford said.

Brandon couldn’t get out of the house fast enough.

Mr. Stepford let the dogs back in, and they left the house. Brandon took as deep a breath as he could, sneezing a few more times as his eyes began to clear. He knew it would take a while for the rest of his symptoms to dissipate.

“Marjorie said you would be over.”

“She told me that you wanted to meet me and that you’d go over the kinds of things you thought I’d be doing for you.” Thankfully they stopped on the sidewalk out in front of the house. This was a strange place to conduct an interview, but Brandon was grateful he could breathe once again. “I graduated with an MBA a few months ago. I’m a hard worker, and I know I can do whatever you need me to do.”

Brandon took a good look at Mr. Stepford and had to admit that he was even more attractive now. The years had been generous to him. There was the slightest hint of gray at the temples of his otherwise jet-black hair, and his eyes were as piercing as they had been. He was broader and seemed stronger, more solid, and definitely as hot as the Mr. Stepford he remembered.

“An MBA, that’s very good,” Mr. Stepford said. “But if you have that kind of degree, why do you want to be my assistant?” His deep brown eyes stared intensely at Brandon, who forced his mind to stay on track.

“Well… shoot…,” he demurred, then figured honesty was best. “I need a job. I got my degree and I did very well in school. Marjorie has all the details and that. Right now, I’m living with my grandmother, and I can’t keep sponging off her. She and your mom are friends, and I got the word that you needed some help, so I applied.”

“I see,” Mr. Stepford said skeptically.

Brandon knew he only had once chance to try to salvage this entire situation. “I had one job all through high school, and then when I left, I spent all four years of undergrad waiting tables. I work hard and I don’t change jobs on a whim. Learning the business world from the ground up is important, regardless of the title. If you want someone who will do their best to be a good assistant, then that’s me.” He shifted his weight from foot to foot, meeting Mr. Stepford’s gaze with his own until he was wracked by a sneeze and wanted to crawl in a hole somewhere. “Thank you for meeting with me.” Not extending his hand because he had just sneezed all over it, he went back to his car, knowing he’d blown that interview so sky-high, it was pathetic.

About the Author

Andrew grew up in western Michigan with a father who loved to tell stories and a mother who loved to read them. Since then he has lived throughout the country and traveled throughout the world. He has a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and works in information systems for a large corporation.

Andrew’s hobbies include collecting antiques, gardening, and leaving his dirty dishes anywhere but in the sink (particularly when writing)  He considers himself blessed with an accepting family, fantastic friends, and the world’s most supportive and loving partner. Andrew currently lives in beautiful, historic Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Author Links

Amazon Author Page

Barnes and Noble Page

Dreamspinner Press

Facebook

Facebook Group All the Way with Andrew Grey

Goodreads

Twitter @andrewgreybooks

Website

For Other Works by Andrew Grey

(Please Be Sure To Stop by His Website to See All of His Works)

Jaime Samms on Backyard Paradise and her new release Sunshine in the Dragon’s Heart by Jaime Samms

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Sunshine in the Dragon’s Heart by Jaime Samms
Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Tiferet Designs

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Jaime Samms here today on tour with her latest novel, Sunshine in the Dragon’s Heart.  Welcome, Jaime.

This book has been such a joy to write. It really brought me back to some childhood places. I set it in what I call my “back yard”. In my head, I was once again wandering the acres of scrub forest that have overgrown the cow fields where my own mother used to drive the cows to the barn. They are by no means old growth, majestic or wonderous. They are poplar stands and aspen groves and dense, prickly pine and spruce stands. When I was a kid, there were also a ton of white-bark birch trees. A tiny creek runs through it and there is a hill near the back line of the property where blueberries grow thick and wild in the summer.

It’s not paradise. But as a kid growing up with that out the back door, it was my paradise. The squishy moss beds and the trickle of the creek were the backdrop for all my day dreams. And trust me, I had many, many day dreams.

I hope I shared some of my love of that place in this book. Life changes all the time, and some day, this might not be there any more, or might not be mine to visit whenever I want. So I had to do my best to preserve it however I could, and since words are my thing, that’s what I used this time.

Hopefully, Sunny and Emile can inhabit that spot in our imaginations for a long, long time.

Blurb:

When Sunny retires to the northern Ontario wilderness to mourn his parents’ deaths, he’s hoping the change of scenery will afford him some peace and quiet.

 

His hopes are soon spectacularly dashed.

 

In self-imposed exile, dragon Emile runs across the Fold between his dimension and Sunny’s—and right into Sunny’s arms. Centuries out of touch with human culture, bright, beautiful Emile incinerates any hope Sunny had for an ordinary existence. With dryads and water sprites coming to life all around them, Sunny can’t deny the magic Emile brings to his life—or his heart. But that same magic leads the unrelenting dragon who would keep Emile captive right to them. To save his love, Sunny will have to reach deep and find some magic of his own.

About the Author

Jaime has been published since the fall of 2008. Her Stories about men falling in love are the stories that she loves to read, so they are also the stories she loves to write.

 

Spare time, when it can be found rolled into a ball at the back of the dryer or cavorting with the dust bunnies in the corners, is spent crocheting, drawing, gardening (weather permitting, of course, since she is Canadian!), or watching movies. She has a day job which she loves, and two kids, and thankfully, wonderful husband who shoulders more than his fair share.

 

She graduated some time ago from college with a fine arts diploma, and a major in textile arts, which basically qualifies her to draw pictures and create things with string and fabric. One always needs an official slip of paper to fall back on after all . . .

 

 

Website: http://jaimesamms.com

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Deviantart: http://dontkickmycane.deviantart.com/

Twitter:https://twitter.com/#!/JaimeSamms

Amazon Author page: amazon.com/author/jaimesamms

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