Remmy Duchene On Writing, Romances, and their new release “Tempt Me” (author interview)

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Tempt Me by Remmy Duchene
Dreamspinner Press
Published August 17th 2018

Cover Art:  Kanaxa

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Remmy Duchene here today on tour for Tempt Me. Welcome, Remmy!

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with Remmy Duchene

How much of yourself goes into a character? Quite a bit. Sometimes I spend a few hours writing and at the end, I feel so exhausted. I seem to go on the emotional ride with my characters (as weird as that sounds). I cannot tell you how many times I message one or both my best friends with tears in my eyes saying “these characters are breaking my soul!” The struggle is real.

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 generally use versions of people I know for my secondary characters. One or two times I’ve used someone for a main – I am always afraid I’ll write the characters too close to a friend or family member and someone they know will read it and well—down hill from there. I know, paranoid but things happen lol

Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write?  Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures?: Any world I create generally has a touch of a real culture in it. Lately, I’ve been using quite a few made up small towns but I plop them down on top of an actual small town. So, though I make certain things up, some things are real. It’s weird to put it that way and I’m not sure it makes sense to anyone else but me lol.

Has your choice of childhood or teenage reading genres carried into your own choices for writing?: It used to. But over the years the romance genre has morphed into something I don’t recognize. As a writer I have to find a way to adapt while still holding on to those imaginative wonder I am used to from my teenage years.

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?: Yes. My novel WHISPERS OF LOVE wreaked havoc on my emotions. It hit a little too close since Hilo went to school like he was supposed to, graduated and work just didn’t seem to want to find him. He had to work at a menial job, struggling to make ends meet, unable to find love—yeah, close to home.

Do you like HFN or HEA? And why?: It depends on my mood at that point in the story. I mean, everyone prefers HEA, right? And in this industry most people believe HFN means the story will have a book 2.

Do you read romances, as a teenager and as an adult?: I jumped from Nancy Drews and Hardy Boys to romance. I grew up reading Catherine Coulter, Jayne Ann Krentz and Nora Roberts. There weren’t any LGBT books in Jamaica.

Who do you think is your major influence as a writer?  Now and growing up?: I’ve been a reader for as long as I can remember. I’ve always loved the ability to get lost in a world not my own. Books took me to adventure, romance, dark places I can escape to and have the time of my life.  I think that is my major influence as a writer—the ability to take someone out of their everyday, and give them the ability to speak foreign languages, travel to places they probably cannot afford and meet spectacular people they wouldn’t have otherwise.

How do you feel about the ebook format and where do you see it going?: I am on the fence about the eBook format. I love the feeling of a paperback in my hand. I was recently at my BFF’s wedding and the power went out. I wasn’t phased in the least because I had my book with me and didn’t have to worry about charging it. On the other hand, I understand that the world is in progression and technology gives you the option of adapting or dying. I chose both—eFormat but still keeps my books around.

How do you choose your covers?  (curious on my part): For my self-published books I have three fantastic cover designs that are my go to. I’ve worked with one, StudioENP for years now. The other two are new. These three designers know me so well, I have never had to send a cover back and tell them it is wrong. I am fairly easy with covers. I understand this is the designer’s art as much as it is the face of my book, and I tend to tell them about my characters and suggest colours I love and then step back and watch them create. So far, I’ve been very lucky since I normally write interracial and stock photos alone are hard to come by.

Do you have a favorite among your own stories?  And why?: Isn’t this a bit like asking which child is my favorite? Lol. Let me see now – My favorite….So far I have to say… Anywhere But Here and Call Me Gideon – I know, those are two. But Anywhere But Here is a tale about a black doctor who was raised in India and a John Doe that is brought into his hospital badly beaten up. I love the change of scenery in this story because it takes place in India and Sri Lanka and this was a first for me.

Call Me Gideon is another one I’d say is up there for my top. The emotions in this story breaks my heart just thinking about it and that was as raw as I’d ever written.

Whispers of Love is close up there as well but you said pick one lol.

What’s next for you as an author?: Currently, for this year I haven’t released much. Aside from TEMPT ME that was release August 17th through Dreamspinner Press, I am one of the lucky authors in the BEAUTIFUL SKIN anthology being released August 23rd that was put together by the fantastic Emmy Ellis at StudioENP. She recognized the need for awareness in the diversity area and has stepped up to do something about it. I’m also hard on work on my next novel tentatively titled BABY, COME TO ME (for those who know me, that title will change five million times before the final product is done lol)

If you write contemporary romance, is there such a thing as making a main character too “real”?  Do you think you can bring too many faults into a character that eventually it becomes too flawed to become a love interest?: I’m not sure the answer to this. Readers say they want real but sometimes they tell you a character is too real – which I don’t know if that is possible.

 

What traits do you find the most interesting in someone? Do you write them into your characters?: Loyalty. That is a very important thing to me. I generally write that into my good-guys. But my bad guys? Forget about it lol

 

Have you ever put a story away, thinking it just didn’t work?  Then years/months/whatever later inspiration struck and you loved it?  Is there a title we would recognize if that happened?: yes. All the time. Case in point, my short ONE FINE THING (That will be in the Beautiful Skin anthology), I was stuck on that one for years. I started it about eight years ago—wait, no more. Because I started it while I was in college. I graduated college, graduated university, graduated college again, worked for six years—so yea, WAY more than eight years. I just couldn’t make it work. Then Emmy ask for stories for this anthology and WHAM! Unstuck.

 

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?: Usually. Some of the hardships my characters go through usually is an offshoot of my some of my real life situation. I mean, some things happen in your life that you cannot make up, right?

 

What’s  the wildest scene you’ve imagined and did it make it into a story?: LOL – yeah, we’re not going to answer this one. Lol. Nope.

 

Ever drunk written a chapter and then read it the next day and still been happy with it?  Trust me there’s a whole world of us drunk writers dying to know.: I did that last weekend lol! Granted I wasn’t completely blitz, just a little tipsy. I stared at the screen the entire day nothing would come out right so I poured myself a glass of wine that turned into four and voila! Love scene written that blew my mind lol. Never doing that again though. The consequences were dire lol.

 

If you could imagine the best possible place for you to write, where would that be and why?: Oh man I could go on and on with this.

  1. The Port of Naples – just watching the cruise ships come in on one side and the city with historic buildings on the other.
  2. On a beach in Cuba.
  3. In an open concept condo in Paris that sits right outside the Eifel Tower.
  4. On the ground in front of the louvre.

Like I said – I could do this forever…

 

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?: Most times to hide. I mean, like you say, the way the world is today you need that time of seclusion from most of it. You can’t keep getting bombarded by all the crazy and not take time away from it. Also, I write because I don’t think I’m remotely good at anything else lol.

 

What’s next for you as a writer?: I am not entirely sure. I make writing plans all the time and then my muse blows them out of the water. It’s better to not plan…just go with the flow.

About Tempt Me...

Officer Gabe Ford knows finding love could be a tad problematic—especially since he hasn’t come out to his partner of six years yet. But what’s a guy to do when his body wants what his brain is saying he can’t have?

A year and a half after a breakup, Jason Tomlinson isn’t actively looking for a relationship. Hell, he can do bad all by himself. But Gabe Ford is just too damn yummy to resist. Just as things are beginning to pick up, one bullet may end it all before it even begins.

About the Author

Remmy Duchene is a Canadian-hockey-watching-baseball-playing kind of guy. He loves walking in the rain and bugging his friends about his latest story ideas. Remmy believes that true love comes in all shapes, sizes, and sexualities. He is always saying “I’d rather see two gay people in love get married than two straight people that hate each other.”

An Alisa Release Day Review: Tempt Me by Remmy Duchene

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Rating:  4.5 stars out of 5

Officer Gabe Ford knows finding love could be a tad problematic—especially since he hasn’t come out to his partner of six years yet. But what’s a guy to do when his body wants what his brain is saying he can’t have?

A year and a half after a breakup, Jason Tomlinson isn’t actively looking for a relationship. Hell, he can do bad all by himself. But Gabe Ford is just too damn yummy to resist. Just as things are beginning to pick up, one bullet may end it all before it even begins.

I loved this story.  Gabe has hidden himself for years and hasn’t been ready to come out to his friends but a little intervention with his best friend and partner, Malik, help him out.  Jason is drawn to Gabe from the beginning and they both allow themselves to explore what is going on between them.

The story was told from both of the characters’ eyes which helped to connect with them.  It was amazing that one Gabe realized Malik didn’t care about him being gay he just went for it and didn’t worry about anyone else.  Jason doesn’t hide either, except after he is shot, but their connection grows even stronger as Gabe helps him recover and they get to know each other more.  The drama with Jason being shot wasn’t all that big but it gave them a reason to be together a little more and an area for them to have a disagreement, which all couples need.

The cover art by Kanaxa is wonderful and I love it.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 85 pages

Published: August 17, 2018 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 978-1-64080-512-5

Edition Language: English

An Alisa Release Day Review: Touch by Remmy Duchene

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

One can’t walk the path of darkness and expect to escape unscathed.

At eighteen, Foster Erickson stepped out of the closet into a world of homelessness, prostitution, and drugs. Years later, he’s pulled it together and is ready to rebuild.

Determined not to let the demons win, Foster starts university with a plan to keep others from making the same mistakes he did. The last thing he expects is Sylvester Roberts.

After years of working with his father, Sylvester decides to step out on his own. University at his age is strange, but for him, failure isn’t an option. After flunking a few tests, Sylvester’s professor assigns him a tutor—Foster Erickson. The moment they meet, Sylvester knows Foster isn’t like other guys.

As the darkness hovers and Sylvester begins falling, he will have to decide if helping Foster fight his demons will be worth it in the end.

This was a story that showed that when you really care and love someone that it will all work out in the end.  Foster hasn’t had many good experiences since he was kicked out of his home at eighteen and is averse to being touched.  Sylvester is finally doing what he wants and he can be very patient in that regard.

While I enjoyed this story and felt for the characters I didn’t feel any real connection to them, this story was more along the lines of being told what happened not shown.  I couldn’t help but think that Foster was able to get over his fear quite quickly, he has been in therapy for this for years and suddenly he finds a guy he wants to sleep with and he can now work it all out, it didn’t connect for me. There were also many time jumps that we were told about what happened or that I felt didn’t line up with the timing for the fall semester at school.

I like the cover art by Kanaxa and the visual of Foster.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 137 pages

Published: March 2, 2018 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 978-1-64080-267-4

Remmy Duchene on Writing and ‘Trust and Control’ (Dreamspinner Press Author Guest Blog)

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Trust and Control by Remmy Duchene
D
reamspinner Press
Cover art by Aaron Anderson

Sales Link

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Remmy Duchene here today to talk about their latest novel, Trust and Control, and writing relationships. Welcome, Remmy!

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Hello everyone!

My name is Remmy Duchene and I write predominantly interracial/multicultural gay romance and erotica. I am here today to show off my new book Trust and Control but I thought I’d chat about something we all look for in a relationship—trust.

Most of us have issues with this. Whether it’s from a long history of being jerked around, or one specific instant in our lives where we were hurt so bad, putting our trust in another human being seems impossible. Sure, I know what I’m talking about because I have some of the same hang-ups. From cheating to abuse, I’ve been there.

In Trust and Control, Christophe has to learn to put his faith in a man, a man he barely knows, a man who he’s never seen his face. A few tender moments on a dance floor, faces hidden behind a mask, anything in that moment is possible because there doesn’t seem to be any form of trust involved. When you break it all down, this is an important part of the flirtation, of the chase. He has to first of all, put himself out there and hope this mysterious man with the dark eyes can look at him as more than just some slut out for a good time.

Another thing about trust is this, everyone wants it but we are very unwilling to give it. I used to say, I will trust you until you give me a reason not to. But after the life I have had, the life before I turned thirteen alone was hell with people who I was supposed to trust betraying me, that saying quickly morphed into I will trust no one until they give me a reason to. It’s not a good way to live but it is hard to put your heart out there then have it stomped on repeatedly.

This is one of the lessons Christophe Lafavre will have to learn in Trust and Control. Here’s hoping this story, though naughty, can give you a little peek into what life can be when you give a little. I know I certainly learned a lot from these characters.

Hugs,

Remmy Duchene

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About Trust and Control

Wealthy real estate mogul Christophe Lafavre has everything—except any love life to speak of. Though he has a brilliant head for business, when it comes to relationships, he’s often left fumbling in the dark.

To put a stop to the whispers about his pitiful social life, Christophe takes a suggestion from a friend and goes to a club on masquerade night. There, he meets an elusive hottie who calls himself Raj, and though Christophe cannot see Raj’s face, there’s definitely a connection. Over the phone and online, Christophe and Raj get to know each other. Their conversation is easy and arousing. It’s hard for Christophe to believe the strength of the feelings he’s developing toward a man who is still essentially a stranger, but he can’t get Raj out of his head. They eventually give in to their physical longing—but still Raj refuses to show his face or divulge his identity.

When it comes, the revelation will rock Christophe’s world and redefine more than one relationship in his life.

ebook, 2nd Edition
Expected publication: November 14th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press

An Alisa Release Day Review: Trust and Control by Remmy Duchene

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

 

trust-and-control-by-remmy-ducheneWealthy real estate mogul Christophe Lafavre has everything—except any love life to speak of. Though he has a brilliant head for business, when it comes to relationships, he’s often left fumbling in the dark.

 

To put a stop to the whispers about his pitiful social life, Christophe takes a suggestion from a friend and goes to a club on masquerade night. There, he meets an elusive hottie who calls himself Raj, and though Christophe cannot see Raj’s face, there’s definitely a connection. Over the phone and online, Christophe and Raj get to know each other. Their conversation is easy and arousing. It’s hard for Christophe to believe the strength of the feelings he’s developing toward a man who is still essentially a stranger, but he can’t get Raj out of his head. They eventually give in to their physical longing—but still Raj refuses to show his face or divulge his identity.

 

When it comes, the revelation will rock Christophe’s world and redefine more than one relationship in his life.

 

I enjoyed this story.  I will say upfront, if others had the same thoughts I did, this book isn’t as heavy in BDSM as I thought it would be.  To me is just seemed like it was playing in the bedroom, which is fine, just not what I expected.  Christophe has never had a romantic relationship that ended well, heck he hasn’t been with anyone for years just to protect himself.  Jaswant has been Christophe’s best friend forever and has been in love with him for the same amount of time, he fears revealing his feelings will ruin their friendship.

 

Chris is completely confused when he meets Raj at the masquerade night; he is scared of his own reaction to the man.  While he learns a bit more about Raj he continues to think there is something familiar about him, but can’t place his finger on it.  When Chris runs away from Jas they both feel that there may be no way to fix their relationship.

 

I could feel Chris’s confusion and Jas’s heart break at their interactions.  When Jas disappears, just when Chris decides they can work it out, Chris goes to the one place he knows Jas would run to.  Chris pursues Jas, but continues to doubt.  The thing about that that bugged me was that Chris’s doubt’s never seemed to change and he always calls his brother to talk him through it.  I just had a hard time believing that Chris would continue to doubt after everything him and Jas went through.  At the same time Jas can’t believe it’s real either until Chris can finally say those three special words.  Overall though I enjoyed this story.

 

Cover art by Aaron Anderson is perfect and I wouldn’t change anything.

 

Sales Links

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Book Details:

ebook, 162 pages

Published: 2nd Edition, November 14, 2016 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN: 9781634779111

Edition Language: English

A Caryn Review: Faded into You (Intoxication #2) by Remmy Duchene

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Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars

faded-into-you-by-remmy-ducheneWhen I was in high school in the early 1980s, I read harlequin romances obsessively.  At the time, they were exactly what my immature self wanted – quick reads where the guy gets the girl with little angst, and the girl would then devote the rest of her life to making her man happy.  Which also meant becoming dependent upon said man for her happiness and well being as well, financial and emotional.

And you know what?  The world isn’t like that any more.  By the time I was a year into college, I quit thinking that I needed a man to define me, or to make my life worthwhile.  And I quit reading cheesy romances, because they offended me with their misogyny.  Why was it always the woman who needed rescuing?  And I continued to stay away from romances until I discovered M/M romance a few years ago, and I could read about people falling in love without that built-in power differential between men and women that bothered me so much.  If a man needed rescuing, it was not simply because of gender, but because of circumstances, or choices, and when they got together, they were equals.

That’s how a relationship should be.

OK, that’s my soapbox, and what I expect from this genre.  So when I read a book that follows that old harlequin formula, just substituting the woman with a man, it pisses me off.  And that’s what this book did.  Ravi is supposed to be an ambitious and successful marketing professional, who chooses to take a job in India in order to further his career and to see the world.  But really, he is just sad and jealous that his best friend is getting married and he’s not, and since his life really has no meaning without a man, he runs away, to India.  Thaddeus is supposed to be a cyber security guru with a checkered past who goes to India to do a job that will further his career as well.  But he takes on the role of uber-alpha male who will “fix” everything that is wrong with Ravi’s life with his magic penis.  Ravi acts irrationally, hating Thaddeus on sight for no apparent reason, but going along with everything he wants because, well, he is powerless in the face of Thaddeus’ take charge masculinity.  There was that annoying “I hate you, but I want you, and I really have no self respect so go ahead and ravish me, and that will make me fall in love with you”.  And of course, Ravi is always the bottom, because he is the weak “woman” in this pairing.  Physically smaller and weaker, younger, less successful, and needing his alpha male to “complete” him.

So enough feminist ranting.  Yes, I know that I have read and enjoyed other books with alpha males, and I’m not sure what set me off so much with this one, but I would have DNFed it about a third of the way through if I hadn’t committed to writing a review.  On top of that, the writing wasn’t even all that good.  There was an awful lot of filler and no substance.  I do not need to read about Thaddeus putting on his boots, then noticing the snow and tucking his pants in, wondering where his scarf went, then getting in the car, closing the door, turning on the defroster…….  And I don’t want to know that he takes a piss every morning before he brushes his teeth.  Who the hell cares and wants to read about that?

I hoped to read and learn about India, but all I got out of this book was that it’s hot, and people are poor there.  Oh, until Ravi and “Thaddy” (shoot me) save their Indian driver who is gay and driven out of his homophobic father’s home, and then his sister is also driven out because she still loves her brother.  Both of them would have obviously become homeless prostitutes without the great Americans to save them.  So even though one MC is Indian and the other is black, I still found this book racist.

I could go on.  I made notes of things I didn’t like, but the list is so long and I don’t want to spend any more time writing about it.  Oh, and I have no idea what the title meant or how it related to the story, and why the subtitle “Fighting Love is Futile” is even there.  Was someone expecting the Borg??

Cover art by Posh Gosh was extremely generic, though the Indian man was good looking.  It would have been nice to have a photograph from India instead of the random sunset, which said nothing about the book.

Sales Links

Pride Publishing

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Book Details:

ebook
Expected publication: November 1st 2016 by Pride Publishing
ISBN139781786514837
Edition LanguageEnglish