Jul 05

#BDSM #BlogHop 2015

Bondage & Discipline, Domination & submission, Sadism & Masochism

BDSM encompasses so many things. It’s understandable why someone who has never participated in it might be confused about what it truthfully entails. We’d like to set that straight. For every person involved in what we call the Lifestyle, there’s a different way of doing things. However, no matter where you go, you’ll encounter a few basic tenets and the folks who are participating in our blog hop would like to show you how some of these things really work.

Welcome to this years BDSM Blog Hop! The hop will run for a full week and yes, I will be posting more than once. One of the things I try to do in my writing is give everyone a chance at love. Period. In December of last year, I published “Caged Sanctuary” my first BDSM romance. I hate the word first in this case as I actually consider “Designs of Desire” to be my first, but there is a misconception that many have. There is the incorrect belief that BDSM is all about abuse. There is also a strange belief many outside the Life have that says only hard core pain, servitude, bondage, etc. is real BDSM.  (Oh, and yes, Designs has it’s kink, lol, just look at the follow up, “Bound by Desire” for their collaring Winking smile) I have a major problem with that, but I’ll get on that soapbox another time, lol.

Sometimes a person is submissive, but either won’t or can’t do the harder things. That doesn’t mean a Dom into sensation play isn’t a real Dom simply because he doesn’t use a flogger or paddle. There is only one right way to live the Life, a BDSM one…. Do you know what it is? It’s all about what is right for the participants. Not what others want. Not what you saw or read or dreamt. The only right way to participate in a scene or lifestyle is the do what feels good, what excites and satisfies the participants.

And, since many of you know about my mobility and joint issues (which yes, has sparked more than one MC in my stories, lol), I’d like to add the following questions to the mix. What do you do if the sub that’s caught your eye happens to have a disability? What if the submissive has suffered abuse or has PTSD? What if you have to make accommodations for the sub? Do you pass him or her over simply because they aren’t able to do things the way you are accustomed to requiring of your boy/girl/pet/etc.?

Or…. What if the Dom has the disability? What if s/he can’t or won’t do certain things because of their health, past, etc? These are things I believe often get lost in the fun and kink of it all for some. In “Caged Sanctuary”, Kade is a sub who lost the use of his legs thanks to being gay bashed. He’s a strong man, but as far as being a sub, he doesn’t believe he is desirable to a Dom. He can’t kneel, he can’t stand, he can’t do…. fill in the blank. But when he finds a Dom that wants him, that doesn’t care about the accommodations and such, he’s afraid to believe. I’ve included a little teaser of right after the first time Kade truly get’s to fly, and gets to see for himself that he’s still the same submissive he was before, and that yes, he can still serve.

Excerpt

Deacon chuckled at how eager his boy was to see himself all trussed up. Smiling, he excused himself and returned shortly with his laptop. He had downloaded the images from his digital camera and had the shots ready for Kade in the photo viewer.

“I took three. One before we began but after you were decorated and bound with the ropes, the other two are later.”

“Why two later?” Kade stared at the computer, not taking his eyes off it, though Deacon hadn’t turned it so he could see the images.

“Let me show you. I think it will be obvious why when you see them.” Deacon settled on the bed next to Kade and turned the screen so Kade could see. The first was as he’d stated, of Kade tied to the bamboo pole, taken at an angle to see how open Kade was in that position, the intricate latticework of the silk ropes, and how he was blindfolded with his arms bound above him.

The next drew a gasp from Kade. He was in the same position, but the hand prints from the initial spanking and the flogging of his back were clear in the shot, as was how he strained his arms and back up as if seeking another strike. “That’s….”

“Gorgeous? Sexy as hell?”

Kade nodded as he reached out to trace one finger down the spine and along the legs of his image. “I don’t look broken like this.”

Deacon knew he was frowning, but didn’t care. “You’re not broken, Kaden. I would happily throttle the asshats that convinced you otherwise.”

“And the last one?” Kade asked, showing no sign of having heard Deacon.

“The last one is my favorite of the lot.” Deacon tapped the pad on the laptop again and the image changed.

Again, Kade hadn’t really moved much, but now the cane striping was clear on. His back was also streaked with Deacon’s spend. He had promised himself he wouldn’t enter Kade that way the first time in scene, but he’d been so hard he hurt and couldn’t resist adding his come to the beautiful marks on his boy. In Deacon’s personal opinion, Kade was the most beautiful sub he had had or seen.

“Oh, my…. You can see that I’m flying, my tears,” Kade whispered, voice reverent.

The odd watery tone made Deacon look at Kade again. When he did, he realized tears streaked Kade’s cheeks. “Oh, my sweet boy, why are you crying?”

“Never thought I’d fly again, much less be able to serve like this.” Kade quickly wiped at his eyes, turning away from Deacon. “Sorry.”

Deacon took a firm hold of Kade’s chin, pulling gently until Kade faced him. “Do not ever, and I do mean ever, apologize for being you. For serving me so perfectly. For feeling joy. Tears are not a sign of weakness,” he added when Kade seemed confused. “Your joy, your pain, your pleasure, all belong to me whether I’m right there with you or not. You’re my boy now.” Deacon dipped his head to take Kade’s lips in a soft kiss, hoping to show his boy how much he was wanted and how much he pleased Deacon both in and out of scene.

© 2014 Tempeste O’Rilely

Giveaway

I’m offering up an ecopy of any of my backlist to a random commenter who leaves a note with their comment/submission (pun intended, lol) that tells me what they believe makes BDSM the fun, sexy, passion it is for so many.

Also…. There’s a BlogHop Grandprize….

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To follow along with the hop (and for more chances to win some great goodie) visit….

Jul 01

WIP it Wednesday: “Whiskers of a Chance”

I can’t believe my first paranormal is coming out soon…”Whiskers of a Chance is due out in Sept/Oct of 2015! (Oh, and I just got the preliminary work on the cover and *swoon* am so in love with!)

*Kermit flail*

As promised, I’m sharing a little more from my upcoming baby. This story started out as a short. Yep, I tried to write a short that was not an add on. I’ve only managed that twice and in both cases, I plan to go back and write those into full books this year or next, lol. So yeah, me and short stories just don’t work.

That said, I couldn’t leave poor Keith and Jason to languish, so I reworked the short and let the full story unfold. I hope you will like the outcome!

So, in the vein of 6 Sentence Sunday (which is where you all got to learn about Designs of Desire if you recall, lol) I thought I’d start showing off little snippets. This one isn’t 6 sentences, but it’s close.

Adam Skyler’s expression was stoic, as always, but the energy pouring off him was bordering on violent. Keith waited for his father to respond; knowing Keith would get what he wanted, though not certain what the cost would be yet. One did not simply do things without the great and mighty Adam Skyler, Alpha of the Glacier Rim Tribe, giving his approval… except when he and Taylor did.

“Why are you only bringing this to me now, Keith? You know how I feel about your sister’s wild ideas of living with the humans. It’s dangerous!”

“Other tribes live—”

In case you didn’t catch it already… the blurb for Whiskers:

Jason Grant runs his own IT business from home, owns his own home, and has the best friend he could imagine. What he doesn’t have, or believe he will ever have, is love. When Jason catches a glimpse of his new neighbor on moving day, his libido ignites and his fascination in piqued. He even manages to concoct an excuse to go over and meet the man who makes him hope and want for more than he has in years.

Keith Skyler is a shifter in a world where his kind is known to only a few, but they don’t often mix and they never mate. Keith has been hoping for a mate since before he can remember, but gay lynx don’t have true mates. As far as he knows, they don’t have mates at all. However, while moving his little family across Seattle—and away from their tribe—his reality tips and spins more than he thought possible.

When these two men meet over a dish of five-cheese broccoli-noodle casserole, sparks fly. Who knew a welcome to the neighborhood gift could give both of them their chance at love?

If you missed last weeks snipped, click HERE to catch up.

Jun 26

Supreme Court rules states must allow same-sex marriage

Washington (CNN)In a landmark opinion, the Supreme Court ruled Friday that states cannot ban same-sex marriage, establishing a new civil right and handing gay rights advocates a victory that until very recently would have seemed unthinkable.

The 5-4 ruling had Justice Anthony Kennedy writing for the majority with the four liberal justices. Each of the four conservative justices wrote their own dissent.

The far-reaching decision settles one of the major civil rights fights of this era — one that has rapidly evolved in the minds of the American pubic and its leaders, including President Barack Obama. He struggled publicly with the issue and ultimately embraced same-sex marriage in the months before his 2012 re-election.

“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family,” Kennedy wrote. “In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than they once were.”

http://www.cnn.com/2015/06/26/politics/supreme-court-same-sex-marriage-ruling/index.html

Jun 24

WIP it Wednesday: “Whiskers of a Chance”

So,”Whiskers of a Chance is coming out in Sept/Oct of 2015!

*Kermit flail*

I’m super excited as this will be my first paranormal romance. I thought I’d share a little starting now Open-mouthed smile about my upcoming baby. This story started out as a short. Yep, I tried to write a short that was not an add on. I’ve only managed that twice and in both cases, I plan to go back and write those into full books this year or next, lol. So yeah, me and short stories just don’t work.

That said, I couldn’t leave poor Keith and Jason to languish, so I reworked the short and let the full story unfold. I hope you will like the outcome!

So, in the vein of 6 Sentence Sunday (which is where you all got to learn about Designs of Desire if you recall, lol) I thought I’d start showing off little snippets. This one isn’t 6 sentences, but it’s close Winking smile

Keith Skyler sat in the hard, high-back wooden chair across from his father, Adam, fighting the desire to scowl at the ignorant male. It was bad enough to be called into his office like a recalcitrant child, but to have to sit in the uncomfortable chair while Adam sat in the plush office chair irked him even further. The positioning was deliberate, to remind Keith that his father had the power, as if he didn’t know that already. “What part of ‘Taylor and I are moving to one of the outer areas of town’ don’t you understand? You insist that since Taylor is without a mate, she needs me to live with her. You also demand it so Zeke can have a male figure in his life, at least until Taylor or I mates. She wishes to move closer to her work, as do I.”

Oh yes…. Did I show you all the blurb for Whiskers? No? Well, let me fix that right now Open-mouthed smile

Jason Grant runs his own IT business from home, owns his own home, and has the best friend he could imagine. What he doesn’t have, or believe he will ever have, is love. When Jason catches a glimpse of his new neighbor on moving day, his libido ignites and his fascination in piqued. He even manages to concoct an excuse to go over and meet the man who makes him hope and want for more than he has in years.

Keith Skyler is a shifter in a world where his kind is known to only a few, but they don’t often mix and they never mate. Keith has been hoping for a mate since before he can remember, but gay lynx don’t have true mates. As far as he knows, they don’t have mates at all. However, while moving his little family across Seattle—and away from their tribe—his reality tips and spins more than he thought possible.

When these two men meet over a dish of five-cheese broccoli-noodle casserole, sparks fly. Who knew a welcome to the neighborhood gift could give both of them their chance at love?

Jun 10

“The Geek and His Artist” and A little Showcasing of Characters!

Hello! Thank you so  much to Tempeste O’Riley for the blog space today!

I am an unashamed gamer. I love love love playing video games. I have limitations—I get vertigo if I spend too much time in first person—but I still love to play. Many of my characters are gamers. I just can’t resist them.

One of the games I love to play is The Sims 3. I’m what they like to call an architect. I love to build and decorate houses. I also love to create my characters in The Sims. It’s a way to give myself a visual of each of my guys—sometimes even more than the main characters.

I wanted to share the guys from The Geek and His Artist with you today.

First up is Jimmy:

Jimmy Bennet, age 17.
Birthdate: February 23, 1998
Height: 6’6” Weight: 198 lb. (beanpole!)

He is patterned after a friend of mine from high school who was just as tall and skinny as Jimmy is from Geek.

Next is Simon Bennet, also age 17.
Birthdate: June 21, 1998
Height 6’1” Weight: 150 (dripping wet), at least at the beginning. He gains a few pounds once Jimmy’s mom starts feeding him. 😉

I had Simon in my head, though I didn’t have anyone in particular he was patterned after like Jimmy was.


Ronnie Mills

Age: 18
Birthdate: April 12, 1998
Height: 5’7” (Which he bemoans), Weight: 130 (yeah, skinny geek)
Ronnie is one of Jimmy’s best friends. They’ve been friends since elementary school and, while he can have asshole-ish tendencies, he knows when to apologize.

Ronnie is also patterned after one of my high school friends. He was very much like this one, a genius on the computer—the kind you do not want to mess with.
Sean Reed

Age: 17
Birthdate: June 30, 1998
Height: 5’10” (Making Ronnie supremely jealous), Weight: 170 (solid, but not muscular or fat)

Sean is Jimmy’s other close friend, kind of geeky like he is and bisexual. He struggles quite a bit with it, eventually coming out to Jimmy and Ronnie at the same time he accepts Kip as his boyfriend. Sean has been even more closeted than Jimmy, thanks to ultra-religious parents.

 


Kip Stewart

Age: 18
Birthdate: March 10, 1998
Height: 6’2”, Weight: Solid 195, thanks to working for his dad’s contracting business in the summers.

Kip is Simon’s friend and (eventual) boyfriend to Sean. The blue and purple spikes in the book are actually all over his head, not in a mohawk style, but The Sims doesn’t have that hairstyle. The colors are his not-so-subtle way of declaring his bisexuality.

Arthur “Deck” West

Age: 18
Birthdate: January 08, 1998
Height: 5’9” (which he refuses to compensate for) and a skinny 145 lbs.

Deck is another of Simon’s skater friends. He likes his plaid and bald head. He tends to keep more or less quiet, but doesn’t mind teasing or sharing his opinion when he wants to.

Deck is quite straight but wouldn’t dream of giving Simon—or Kip or Jimmy or Sean—shit for their sexuality.
Tony Fisher

Age 17
Birthday: November 26, 1998
Height 6’ even, which he makes up for with the 4” spiked mohawk—because his just can’t let Kip be the tallest. He weighs in at a skinny 160, no matter what he does to put on weight.

Tony looks like he spends his life stoned, but in truth, he just lets people think that so they underestimate him. He tends to be the voice of reason opposite Deck, when the teasing gets a little over the top.

For more pics of the guys—as well as Jimmy and Simon in their prom tuxes and Jimmy’s mom, check out the full character gallery

I hope you’ve enjoyed the pictures! Be sure to leave a comment for an entry into the grand prize drawing for the signed paperback and $25 at Harmony Ink! One commenter today will win your choice of a Geek character trading card!

Simon Williams spends his lunch periods drawing his geek and trying not to think about the terrors waiting for him at home. He needs to get away from his abusive father before he suffers the same grisly fate as his mother. Because he’s learned the hard way running away doesn’t work, he’s counting the days until his eighteenth birthday. 

Jimmy Bennet should be spending his lunch studying so his senior GPA is good enough to get him into college, but he can’t seem to focus thanks to his distracting artist. When he’s given the opportunity to tutor Simon in Trig and discovers Simon’s home-life nightmare, he wants nothing more than to get Simon out of danger. This need becomes more urgent when Simon comes to school the Monday after their first date with bruises, but it takes a broken leg before Jimmy can convince his boyfriend the Bennets really want him.

But the danger Simon thought was past shows up at the most unexpected time, and he must stand up to the fears he’s held so long to protect not only himself, but the man he wants to spend his life with.

You can get Geek here:

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Tour-wide Giveaway (separate from post giveaway):

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About Hope:

Hope Ryan is an out and proud bisexual, wife of a loving guy and mother to three, including an amazingly brave gender fluid son. She loves to write about the tough stuff, but also wants to see her characters happy in the end. She feels strongly about showing there is hope for everyone, no matter where you come from, how you identify your gender or who you love.

Hope likes to play board and card games and can often be found playing God with her Sims or running around, fighting monsters in a virtual version of Middle Earth. Her TV and movie preferences lean towards anime, sci fi and fantasy, though she’ll never turn down a good happily ever after love story, either. As long as there are explosions or action, she’s happy. She loves to read books of all kinds, though prefers stories about love in its many forms.

Find Hope at her website, email her, or on Facebook.

To follow along with tour…

Jun 02

Character Development and “Fire and Ice” by Andrew Grey

Hardest thing about character development?

For me, one of the tricks of character development is to choose a name. Names are important and when developing a character, having the name tells me a great deal. I like my names to evoke a feeling about who the character is. When I wrote A Wild Ride, I knew who Dante was as soon as the name came to me. The same is true of Carter and Donald, (Ice)Ickle.

But I think the most difficult thing is determining what their flaw is and how to use that flaw to make the story more interesting and further character development and change. That goes to the heart of the story and can take time to develop and make sure is clearly defined in my head. However once I have done that and have the roadmap I want to follow, the character becomes clear and fleshed out for me. Then at that point, I have a real story with the meat I love.

Title: Fire and Ice
Author: Andrew Grey
Series: Carlisle Cops (Book 2)
Genre: M/M Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 25, 2015
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Length: 200 pgs 
Add To Goodreads

Carter Schunk is a dedicated police officer with a difficult past and a big heart. When he’s called to a domestic disturbance, he finds a fatally injured woman, and a child, Alex, who is in desperate need of care. Child Services is called, and the last man on earth Carter wants to see walks through the door. Carter had a fling with Donald a year ago and found him as cold as ice since it ended.

Donald (Ice) Ickle has had a hard life he shares with no one, and he’s closed his heart to all. It’s partly to keep himself from getting hurt and partly the way he deals with a job he’s good at, because he does what needs to be done without getting emotionally involved. When he meets Carter again, he maintains his usual distance, but Carter gets under his skin, and against his better judgment, Donald lets Carter guilt him into taking Alex when there isn’t other foster care available. Carter even offers to help care for the boy.

Donald has a past he doesn’t want to discuss with anyone, least of all Carter, who has his own past he’d just as soon keep to himself. But it’s Alex’s secrets that could either pull them together or rip them apart—secrets the boy isn’t able to tell them and yet could be the key to happiness for all of them.

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Dreamspinner Press

“It’s okay,” Carter soothed. He parked the car and hurried around, opened the door, and unhooked Alex from the seat belt. Then he pulled him out of the car and into his arms. He was shaking like a leaf. “There’s nothing to be afraid of.”

Alex looked up at the building and shook in Carter’s arms. A car pulled in behind them, and Donald got out and strode over to where they were standing. “He’s mean,” Alex whispered as Donald stepped closer to them.

“No, he’s not. He’s just—” Carter smiled. “—grumpy.” He tickled Alex slightly, and Alex giggled and wrapped his arms around Carter’s neck.

“I’m professional, not grumpy,” Donald said and walked toward the front door of the hospital.

Carter followed along behind. “He is grumpy,” he said to Alex and walked inside.

Donald was already at the desk, and after a few minutes, he returned and motioned them to the chairs. “We need to wait, but it shouldn’t be long. I used your name as well.”

Carter looked at the woman behind the desk, and she smiled brightly at him. He sighed and sat down. Alex stayed on his lap, and Donald sat next to him. They didn’t talk, but every few minutes Donald shifted nervously. Carter kept his attention on Alex, but every few minutes he couldn’t help taking a peek at Donald in his suit and tie, all buttoned up.

Carter knew the exquisite body that lay hidden under those clothes. He and Donald had… well, they’d had a fling, a one-night stand that had ended up stretching out over an entire weekend a year earlier. It had been hot, sweaty, and Carter had thought well worth repeating as many times as possible, but obviously Icicle hadn’t. As soon as the weekend was over, Carter realized just why everyone referred to him as Ice, because Carter didn’t just get the cold shoulder; he’d had his nuts frozen off completely.

“You can go on through,” a nurse said when she came out to get them. Carter stood and followed her, still carrying Alex.

“I can take him. There’s no need for you to spend your entire evening here with him,” Donald said and carefully reached for Alex. He didn’t try to bite him again, but he most definitely was not happy, and after a few moments, he simply began to cry. Not whimpers, but out and out wailing, with tears of desperation.

“It’s all right. I’ll stay with him. Maybe he’ll calm down.” Alex practically jumped away from Donald and back into Carter’s arms. That seemed to settle things, and they walked together to an examining room.

Carter laid Alex on the bed and hoped he’d stay there. Thankfully it seemed comfortable enough, and Alex stayed still. Carter found the switch and dimmed the lights. Alex yawned, and Carter held his hand. Eventually the little guy fell asleep. “I have no idea how long he’s been awake.”

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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.

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Jun 01

#Interview w/ #GuestAuthor Keelan Ellis

Interview with Guest Author

Keelan Ellis
Under The Same Cover


Thank you for stopping over to visit, Keelan. In case my lovely readers don’t know who are—though I’m certain they all do… right guys?—I thought I’d do a little sit-down visit with you and help us all get to know you a little better.

I strive to write stories that feel true, with real human emotion and a sense of humor. Also, with cute boys making out with each other.

What makes your stories different from other authors out there? 

There are a lot of terrific authors in this genre. I’m new to it as a writer, and I guess I’m still working on distinguishing myself, but it’s always been important to me that my characters talk to each other like real people who have real relationships, that they joke with each other and get mad at each other in ways that ring true. I’ve been in my share of relationships, and I draw on all of them when I write. 

When did you first consider yourself an author?

I’ve considered myself a writer since I was a child, but I didn’t consider myself an author until I’d finished writing my first book. That book is currently unpublished and undergoing a rewrite, but I was still very proud of myself for finishing it. 

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do to get past it?

I suffered terrible writer’s block after finishing I’ll Still Be There. I felt paralyzed as to what I should work on. I had a million ideas that all seemed great, but when I tried to start any of them, they seemed to dissolve like dust. I tried a bunch of things, including asking friends for prompts for short stories, writing fan fiction, taking time off. None of these things worked. The only thing that made a real difference was setting aside a scheduled time and forcing myself to write. There’s nothing to it but to do it, apparently. I also had to let go of a lot of perfectionism and insecurity about what I was writing, and move forward even when I wasn’t sure it was good enough. Sometimes you just have to push past that, and you can always go back over it later. 

I was asked a great question recently and thought I’d ask it of my visitors as well… If your writing was translated, which would be your preference:  TV, movie, play, or Broadway?

I think this particular book would work best as a movie, but most of what I write would make great television, in my opinion. I am a huge fan of TV at the moment, and I appreciate how the medium allows the writers to explore a story so much more deeply. They’re able to include characters and details that a film would never have time for. 

Does your family know what you write, and if so, how did they react when you first told them what and how explicit your writing would be?

My husband knows what I write, and to be honest I think he was a little weirded out at first. I still haven’t let him read this book, but now that it’s all finalized I’m going to. My kids are way too young to read my writing! 

LOL
Most of mine are too (though my eldest has read a little, I think reading sex a parent wrote, even if the child is well over the age of majority, is icky (or so I was told, lol)).
Have you ever met someone in real life, or a stranger, that you turned into a MC?

Yes, more than once. 

Who is your favorite author and why?

It’s so difficult to choose a favorite, but I will tell you that I always look forward to new Tana French books. She writes the loveliest mysteries with twists that I have never once been able to figure out ahead of time. Her characters all feel very solid, and the plots are beautifully crafted. 

Boxers, briefs, commando? What’s your favorite way to “dress” your man?

I usually go with boxer briefs. Commando has been known to happen, though.

Do you as an author concentrate on one genre?  Or do you feel as though you should try to find your voice amongst the many and various genres?

I have plans for books in a few different genres. This book is part historical fiction, part paranormal, and part contemporary romance. Paranormal isn’t my usual thing–in fact, this was the first time I’d ever tried it–but I found I really enjoyed it. It’s a very freeing genre. 

And just because I love to tease 😉 what are you working on now, and what is coming up from you next?

I’m working on a follow-up to I’ll Still Be There. Eli and Jess have some stuff still to work out, and the ghosts have more wisdom to impart. There’s also going to be some romance for their friend Cassie, which she so sorely deserves. 

As I mentioned before, I’m also working on a rewrite of another book. It’s detective fiction, and the plotting is rather exhausting. It has some romance in it, of course, but I don’t want the plot to be an afterthought. The main character is a very serious, somewhat grumpy detective whose relationship with his long time boyfriend has just ended. I won’t say any more than that just yet, but I will say that I really, really love this character. He’s not based on a real person, but he feels like someone I’ve known for a long time. 

Thanks so much for the opportunity to blog with you! Anyone who wants to get in touch with me is more than welcome! 

Keelan

I’ll Still Be There

M/M Paranormal Romance
Cover Artist: Catt Ford

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: June 1, 2015
Length: Novel / 200 pages

The summer after high school, Eli Dunn and Jess Early explore an abandoned brothel in the rural Florida Panhandle. They’ve always kept their mutual attraction unspoken, but in an upstairs room at the end of the hall, everything changes. Suddenly, all the longing Eli and Jess have tried so hard to conceal bursts free, and passion like they’ve never experienced comes to light, along with the ghosts of Clay Bailey and Silas Denton, murdered owners of the brothel. And Clay and Silas have no problem possessing Eli and Jess in order to express their love for each other, without thought for the living.

Deeply disturbed by the experience, Eli and Jess part and try to get on with life as best they can. But after several years, Eli returns to Florida, only to find that Jess has made some questionable choices. These eventually lead him back to the abandoned house and a confrontation with Eli. Old scores are settled and Eli and Jess reunite. But Clay and Silas’s ghosts aren’t finished yet, for they’ve always believed in the power of open and honest love.

Amazon 
All Romance 
Dreamspinner

 

When Jess stopped talking, Eli just looked at him for a while. His face was so familiar, and so unique. Eli had never seen anyone who looked like him before. He had a sort of black Irish look, with curly dark hair and pale, lightly freckled skin, but his eyes weren’t blue. They were so dark they were almost black.

“What?” Jess said, finally.

Eli shrugged. “Why’d you drive us here, anyway?”

“I’ve always wanted to see this place. It’s supposed to be haunted. Did you know that?”

Eli looked over at him, and thought he looked deadly serious. He scoffed and said, “You don’t believe in that shit, do you?”

“There’s plenty in this world that’s beyond our experience, Elijah.” Something about Jess’s tone made Eli stop laughing. Something about the way he’d said Elijah, though that was nothing so unusual. He always used the whole name, never the nickname. He never had, even when they were kids. Eli had always liked it coming from him, though he wouldn’t take it from anyone else. From anyone else it sounded like a taunt.

“Ghosts?” Eli asked. His voice was rough from the whiskey.

Jess shrugged, and looked right at Eli. “I don’t know everything, and neither do you. There’s all kinds of weird shit in the world, you know?”

“I guess,” Eli allowed.

“Anyhow, the story goes, there were these two old boys, Clay and Silas, running pussy out of this place, back in the fifties and sixties. You can see how big it is. They were living here, the two of them, and all the whores. It was a popular joint, people came from all around over to drink and fuck. Thing is, they catered to some specialized tastes.”

“Oh yeah?” Eli yawned and then asked, “Like what?”

“Well,” Jess continued, “one of the girls was black. She came from New Orleans, I think.”

Eli laughed again and asked, “You’re just making this shit up, aren’t you?”

Jess looked offended at the very idea, and he said, “I’m only telling you what I heard, Elijah.”

“All right, all right. Go on, then. Let’s hear it. So they had a black whore in their place. That’s not such a big fucking deal.”

“Well no, not now, but this was like sixty years ago,” he said. “But no, that wasn’t the really exotic thing. Word was, they had a boy working there too.”

“Really.” Eli couldn’t look at him. He busied himself taking another drink, and wondered why the hell Jess was telling him about this.

“Yep,” Jess replied. “People would come from pretty far, because there just weren’t a lot of places around here to find that sort of thing.”

Eli snorted a laugh and said, “I’d imagine there still aren’t, not around here.”

“True enough. And if you liked boys, it wasn’t like you could just get yourself a boyfriend or something, not in those days. Paying for it would’ve been your only option.”

“I guess you’d want to travel a little for something like that. It’s not exactly the kind of thing you’d want getting around, is it?” As uncomfortable as he was, he was starting to warm to the story. He’d never heard anything about this place, and it was sort of fascinating.

“Nope. This is why these guys were so successful, because they knew how to keep secrets. They had plenty of their own.”

Jess was looking at him pointedly, like he’d just revealed something big, but the booze was making Eli’s mind work a little slower. He didn’t understand what Jess was trying to say.

Eli frowned in confusion, and Jess smiled. He said, “They were together, see? Screwing each other. They’d been running that brothel and living there for fifteen years.”

“Oh.” Eli felt sort of dumb not to have put that together, and again he wondered if Jess was trying to say something to him, maybe trying to get him to admit what Cassie had been able to see so clearly. He wasn’t going to be goaded into telling Jess anything.

“Well,” he asked, “if they were so goddamn good at keeping secrets, how is it that you know about it now?”

“Same reason the place is haunted. Some bad shit went down here. Everything came out after that.”

Jess stood up and stretched, then walked to the back of the truck. Eli looked up at him and said, “You going to take a piss?”

“I am. And then I’m going into that house and looking around. Are you coming?”

Eli looked doubtfully at the house. He really didn’t want to—it was probably moldy as hell and would smell disgusting in there. He knew Jess would just think he was scared, though, so he said, “Yeah, sure. Why the hell not?”

He decided to empty his bladder first too, and when they’d both finished, they walked up to the front of the old place, up the battered steps onto the sagging porch, and stepped in through the open doorway.

As expected, it did stink in there, of mold and rot, animal and possibly human waste. Jess had brought a flashlight from the truck, and he shone it around the room. There was a smashed jukebox in a corner and the remains of a bar along one wall. All the booze was long gone, of course. They walked through a sitting room and into the kitchen. The house had been empty for over forty years, so anything of any value or interest had long since been removed.

Jess approached a precarious-looking staircase, and at that point Eli stopped caring if Jess thought he was chicken. He grabbed Jess’s arm and said, “Are you nuts? You are gonna break your fucking neck. There’s nothing up there but more mold and shit.”

“But Elijah, that’s where the ghosts are.” Jess gave him a big grin, obviously enjoying himself immensely, and started up the steps.

“Shit.” Eli followed him, mentally cursing himself for not being able to mind his own business. “You never told me the rest of the story. Just that bad shit happened. Is that all you know?”

“Nope. So this boy they had working for them, he worked only by appointment, unlike the girls. He had mostly regular customers, not walk-ins. One of them, this married lawyer from somewhere in Alabama, was real regular. Started getting a little too attached, sent gifts, shit like that.”

They had reached the top of the stairs and stood at the end of a long hallway. They started poking into each room they passed, and there were quite a few of them, all just big enough to hold a bed, a chair, and a dresser.

Jess continued with the story as they went. “So one time, this guy comes in on a night when he wasn’t expected, half in the bag and pissed, acting like he had some kind of claim. He tried to go into the boy’s room when he was entertaining another client.”

They had gotten pretty far along the hallway, and had found nothing in any of the rooms but some rotting old clothing and some mildewed, waterlogged books and boxes of sanitary napkins.

“So what’d they do?”

“Beat the shit out of him, of course. Told him to mind his fucking manners or he’d lose his privileges.”

“Of course,” Eli replied. Again, he had to wonder how much of this was what he’d actually been told, and how much was embellishment. Jess wasn’t bad with a story when he had a few drinks in him and was in the right mood. This could be all or at least mostly bullshit, for all he knew.

“The dude left, drank some more, and came back later with a gun. He caught those men in bed, either fucking or about to, shot one in the head and the other in the heart.”

They had reached the door at the very end of the hallway, and unlike all of the other ones, this one was closed.

Eli’s gut twisted, and it was on the tip of his tongue to tell Jess he wanted to leave. He almost begged him not to open the door, but he knew there was no point. The way Jess had been lately, he would probably just laugh at him and go in anyway.

Jess pushed the door open, and it went without a creak of any kind. The room they entered was much bigger than any of the other bedrooms. There was a suite of heavy, masculine furniture in maple, with a dark cherry stain—a four-poster double bed, highboy, long dresser, and wardrobe. It was in poor condition now, but had obviously once been expensive. The mattress was still on the bed, stained black with old blood.

Eli had started feeling strange the second he’d stepped over the threshold. There was a weird crawling in his lower belly, and he was feeling slightly short of breath. He looked over at Jess, who looked a bit uncomfortable himself.

Jess pulled open one of the shallow top drawers of the dresser and aimed the flashlight into it. “Hey, check this out,” he said, looking over his shoulder at Eli.He walked over and looked. There were some neatly folded linen handkerchiefs, a small dish with cuff links, and some loose change.

“Weird,” Jess said. “You’d think this stuff would’ve been long gone.” He reached in to pick up one of the cuff links, then gasped and dropped it as his whole body jerked suddenly.

Eli stepped back quickly, and then realized Jess was trying to fuck with him. “What, did you see a ghost?” he asked, smirking.

Jess turned to look at him, and his wide-eyed stare made Eli think twice. He shook his head and moved away from the dresser. Eli started to reach in, but Jess said, “I wouldn’t.”

“Oh really. And why not?”

“Because….” Jess hesitated. “This room, it’s not right. Can’t you feel it? We should get the fuck out of here.”

He reached past Eli to close the drawer, and their arms brushed against each other.

There was maybe a second of complete stillness. They were staring at each other, and then Jess whispered, “Oh, shit,” and reached down to rub at his crotch, as if he wasn’t even aware of doing it. Eli blinked, and realized how hard his own dick was. He wanted… he suddenly needed Jess to touch him. He was panting, staring at Jess’s hand, with its long fingers, as it slid up and down, over his fly.

 

Keelan Ellis is a true crime enthusiast, a political junkie, and a comedy fan. Despite a compulsion to sometimes wallow in the depths of humanity’s corruption and sadness, she considers herself a romantic at heart. The stories she really connects with are about love that’s been twisted into hatred, and she believes that with honesty and forgiveness, love can overcome. Keelan loves good bourbon and classic country music, great television and well-prepared food, especially shared with like-minded people. She’s not a fan of parties and large groups of people, but there’s nothing she loves more than a long conversation with friends. Her favorite part of the writing process is the collaborative stage, hashing out plot and characters with smart and talented friends. It’s where she truly comes to understand the people she’s writing about, and often falls in love with them. With the support and encouragement–as well as some serious editing help–Keelan has found the writing niche she’s always searched for. Sometimes she gets blocked, and when that happens, there’s only one thing she knows to do. Just like Inigo Montoya, she goes back to the beginning, writing about the characters who inspired her so much in the past.

 

Find & Follow Keelan Online:

Website: http://keelanellis.blogspot.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Keelan-Ellis/1610295045893801

Twitter:  @KeelanEllisAuth

Tumblr: http://keelan-ellis.tumblr.com/

eMail: keelanellisauthor@gmail.com

Jun 01

Inquire with Tempeste: Favorite Muppet

Here’s one that I find indicative of someone’s personality: who is your favorite Muppet, and why?

Trix

Dear Trix,

I love hearing from readers like you, so thank you! <3

As to your question: That’s a hard question, honestly. I’m assuming you mean the Muppets from the Muppet Show, specifically (Jim Henson made so many more Muppets than those for the show….). With that in mind, I’m torn between Miss Piggy and Kermit. Though my absolute favorite Muppet is Animal *bashing the drums in the background Winking smile

As someone that’s always been overweight, even as a child, Miss Piggy being so pretty/glamorous was always a huge thing to me as a kid. Here was a creature that made being chubby okay. Now, that in no way means I thought her attitude at times was at all acceptable, but still, big and beautiful was a huge thing for me.

Kermit was able to endure anything, no matter what. When I wanted to give up on things, even me, watching the old Muppet show (I loved old shows, still do, lol) actually cheered me up no matter how low I felt. I spent a lot of time growing up depressed, low, in pain both mental and physical (abuse is never okay!!!), and the Muppets was one of the bright spots in my life for a long time.

As for Animal…. What’s not to love about an insane creature that lives his life the way he wants, and damn other peoples opinions? He does what he wants, occasionally reining in his actions/attitude for the benefit of those he cares about. However, he never changes who he is, even for the others. He’s always true to himself. I always wanted to have the courage to be like that—only without the drums. Winking smile

I know I answered a little more than you asked, but my childhood would have been a much darker place without Kermit, Miss Piggy, and Animal!

xoxo,

Tempe

Visit Tempeste’s Temptations, Tempe’s fan group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/TempestesTemptations/

Follow Tempe at Twitter: @TempesteO

Let’s hear your best questions (and nothing is off limits!). I’ll answer a new one ever week. For more info on how and the giveaway attached, click HERE.

May 31

Character Names by #GuestAuthor Dirk Greyson, Author of "Day and Knight"

Why did you chose the title
and names for the
characters? Is it significant
to the plot or the characters
who hold the names?

Yes it is. In some ways these two men have quite a bit in common, but in others they are very different. Knight is older, cynical, and he’s been hurt very badly. His disposition is quiet, almost somber, and the man can be as prickly as a cactus. There are times when he can’t hold in his assholeness. Even his friends, what few there are, tend to think he can be an ass. Knight had his family ripped away from him and he crawled into a bottle. So there’s plenty of darkness in his life. But he’s also loyal, dutiful, courageous, and forthright, a good Marine. So Knight is very appropriate.

Dayton (Day) has had his share of heartbreak, but his outlook on life is much different. He’s strong, very smart, intuitive, and tends to see the glass as half full. He can be just as stubborn as Knight and doesn’t back down from him,, so he can cut through Knight’s bullshit and shed light on the man himself. Day shares a number of traits with Knight including loyalty, courage, and just plain guts. Knight even said he’d have made a good Marine.

The funny thing was that as I developed these characters, they named themselves. I didn’t have to work at it, or try to come up with something clever, they told me their names and who they were, loud and clear.

Title: Day and Knight 
Author: Andrew Grey
Genre: M/M Contemporary Mystery/Suspense Romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 4, 2015
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Length: 200 pgs 
Add To Goodreads

As former NSA, Dayton (Day) Ingram has national security chops and now works as a technical analyst for Scorpion. He longs for fieldwork, and scuttling an attack gives him his chance. He’s smart, multilingual, and a technological wizard. But his opportunity comes with a hitch—a partner, Knighton (Knight), who is a real mystery. Despite countless hours of research, Day can find nothing on the agent, including his first name!

Former Marine Knight crawled into a bottle after losing his family. After drying out, he’s offered one last chance: along with Day, stop a terrorist threat from the Yucatan. To get there without drawing suspicion, Day and Knight board a gay cruise, where the deeply closeted Day and equally closeted Knight must pose as a couple. Tensions run high as Knight communicates very little and Day bristles at Knight’s heavy-handed need for control.

But after drinking too much, Day and Knight wake up in bed. Together. As they near their destination, they must learn to trust and rely on each other to infiltrate the terrorist camp and neutralize the plot aimed at the US’s technological infrastructure, if they hope to have a life after the mission. One that might include each other.

Amazon 
All Romance 
Dreamspinner Press

“Yeah, I know that, but it’s been two years. Don’t you think it’s time you took off the black dress and veil and went to purple at least?” Mark always had these sayings that rarely made sense. “It’s time you rejoined the living and stopped mourning.” Mark lifted his glass to his lips and sighed after taking a sip. “Damn, that’s good.” He sighed and then let his gaze wander back to Knight. “Kid, you need to get back to life or you’ll end up a grumpy old man before you’re forty.”

“Shit,” Knight sighed and drank from his tea. “That’s what Dayton called me today.”

“Who’s Dayton? Your partner in this mission?” Mark barely stopped long enough for Knight to nod. “Then that kid pegged you fast.” Mark seemed pleased about that… too pleased.

“What?”

“At least this Dayton isn’t going to take any of your crap. You need that.” Mark grinned, the small scar at the corner of his mouth showing. It was a souvenir he had gotten from a bar fight in Mexico when he’d rescued Knight after he’d done something stupid as a newbie. “Any partner that will let you walk all over them isn’t the partner you need.”

“You walked all over me,” Knight said.

Mark paused with his glass halfway to his lips. “Did I?” He raised his eyebrow slightly to the left, catching Knight in a whine without saying a word. “You were fresh out of the Marines and as gung ho as they came. Damn, you were scary as shit, always raring to shoot or blow shit up.” Mark smiled. “Came in handy in Ecuador, though.” He sipped his whiskey again, still grinning. “You needed a firm hand. Still do. Now, sometimes we end up with the partner we need and sometimes we end up with the partner we get. It’s up to you to decide which this is.”

“He’s the partner I got….” Knight gulped from his glass, the liquid coating his suddenly dry throat. “Just like I was the partner you got, and you were the partner I needed.”

“Are you sure about that, kid?” Mark expression was unreadable. “You sure we didn’t both get what we needed?” He downed the rest of his whiskey and signaled the waitress for another. “Don’t be too hard on this Dayton, but don’t go easy on him either. Fieldwork is fucking hard. Everyone thinks it’s excitement and glamor, but it’s really days of waiting surrounded by moments when shit happens.”

“Tell me about it. He’s so gung ho he’s probably spending the evening reading files and reviewing intercept transmissions.”

Mark stared at him. “That sounds smart to me. The question I have for you is, why aren’t you doing the same thing? It sounds like the kid is getting himself ready and doing the preparation you’d want a partner to do.” He lifted his glass to his lips but then sat it back on the table without taking a drink. “He may be new, but maybe the one who isn’t ready for this mission is you.” Mark folded his hands. “You never shirked on any mission we had. You pulled your weight and then some. That’s what he’s trying to do.”

That hit Knight like a punch in the gut. “Shit.”

“I ain’t saying you need to be a newbie about this. It’s your job to act as the seasoned pro. Help him along but don’t be an ass about it… well, not all the time. Asking you not to be an ass is like asking you not to breathe. But at least keep your assness to a minimum.”

Dirk is very much an outside kind of man. He loves travel and seeing new things. Dirk worked in corporate America for way too long and now spends his days writing, gardening, and taking care of the home he shares with his partner of more than two decades. He has a Master’s Degree and all the other accessories that go with a corporate job. But he is most proud of the stories he tells and the life he’s built. Dirk lives in Pennsylvania in a century old home and is blessed with an amazing circle of friends.

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May 27

#Interview w/ #GuestAuthor Erin McRae and Racheline Maltese: Romance without the Rules!

Interview with Guest Author

Erin McRae and Racheline Maltese
Romance without the Rules!


Thank you for stopping over to visit, Erin and Racheline. In case my lovely readers don’t know who are—though I’m certain they all do… right guys?—I thought I’d do a little sit-down visit with you and help us all get to know you a little better.

 

What makes your stories different from other authors out there?

Everything we’ve written to date is in the present tense, and there’s always a reason for it, whether that’s because we want our books to have an energy similar to reading a screen play (Love in Los Angeles) or because our heroes have tragedies in their pasts and can only be happy in the present (Love’s Labours).

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do to get past it?

Raise the stakes! If we’re stuck, it’s usually because the stakes aren’t high enough.

I was asked this recently and would love to find out your take on it… If your writing was translated, which would be your preference: TV, movie, play, or Broadway?

Those are all spaces that at least one of us has written for to some degree. We have TV and film projects together and Racheline has written plays and books for musicals. This story probably lends itself best to TV. It’s a bit Slings and Arrows with a mysterious love story under it.

Does your family know what you write, and if so, how did they react when you first told them what and how explicit your writing would be?

We both write under our real names. Racheline’s parents don’t read her work, either in or out of the romance and erotica space, by long-standing agreement. Erin’s parents have been enthusiastic about many of our titles. Her mom sends her concerned emails about the Love in Los Angeles characters.

Have you ever met someone in real life, or a stranger, that you turned into a MC?

Everyone is a potential character. Everyone.

Who is your favorite author and why?

Erin: Neal Stephenson hits a glorious sweet spot of cyberpunk, history geekery, kickass heroines, and epic narrative.

Racheline: Ellen Kushner does a huge amount with dialogue and is really great at stories where drama uses farce as an engine.

Boxers, briefs, commando? What’s your favorite way to “dress” your man?

Depends on the man! Paul (from Love in Los Angeles) is a boxers guy. Alex (Also from LILA) would really prefer not to talk about it. And Michael (from Love’s Labours) thinks the less clothes he has on in general, the better the world is.

We already know you love to write/read in different genres, but why do you feel you share your voice best when writing amongst the different genres?

We don’t really pick stories to write according to their genre. Rather, we just end up in the place the story wants to go. We write a lot of contemporary, because we like writing about the film and TV industry, and also about the cities in which we live. We write a lot of magical realism because we like writing about death and witches. But we’ve also done some paranormal and adore ourselves some historical.

And just because I love to tease 😉 what are you working on now, and what is coming up from you next?

The third book in Love in Los Angeles, our Hollywood romance series from Torquere Press, will be out in June, and Midsummer’s sequel will be out late summer. Right now we’re working on the next books in both of those series and have just started poking at a spy romp because we wanted to write about violence and Budapest.

All of those sound so interesting … Will have to add to my TBR pile, again Open-mouthed smile 
On that wonderful note, I thought I’d share a little from What’s In A Name? So sit back, relax, grab a drink, and enjoy!

Midsummer

M/M Contemporary Romance
Series: Love’s Labours
Cover Artist: Brooke Albrecht

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 20, 2015
Length: Novella / 89 pages

John Lyonel, a long-time theater professional and teacher, heads to Virginia to play Oberon in the Theater in the Woods’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, intending to focus on his work. John is recovering from the tragic loss of his family and needs a break. The last thing he expects is to become captivated by Michael Hilliard, the professional actor playing Puck, especially since John has never been attracted to men, let alone one so much younger.

They rush headlong into an affair which falls apart dramatically over secrets that John and Michael are keeping from each other. A steep learning curve, the gossipy cast of the show, and the sometimes sinister magic of the woods conspire to keep them apart. But stage lights and stars might work their magic and help them define a new future.

Amazon 
AllRomance 
B&N 
Dreamspinner

 

Costume fittings and dress rehearsals means that John finally gets to see Michael costumed as Puck. The human characters are dressed contemporarily, in suits and cocktail dresses that become increasingly disheveled as the show goes on. The fairies, though, are dressed in greens and browns with crowns of strange wildness — thistles, cornsilk, and Queen Ann’s lace. Michael as Puck looks deeply inhuman, covered in leaves as if dragged in from the wooded grounds. For their first dress rehearsal, it takes all of John’s considerable experience and willpower to actually focus on the play and not Michael. As taken as Oberon is meant to be with Puck, he should actually be able to remember and deliver his lines.

“Whose idea was this?” he asks Michael afterward, catching him before he can change. Michael blinks at him with eyes done up in silver and green. John wants to devour him.

“Do you like it?” Michael asks, more distant and coy than usual, sliding his hands up John’s chest which, like his own, is bare.

All John can do is groan when Michael looks up at him from under his lashes. He stands on his tiptoes to kiss John briefly, and then vanishes. When he reappears he’s Michael again, in t-shirt and shorts, but John can’t forget the image of him transformed.

 

Erin McRae is a queer writer and blogger based in Washington, D.C. She has a master’s degree in International Affairs from American University, and delights in applying her knowledge of international relations theory to her fiction and screen-based projects, because conflict drives narrative.

Racheline Maltese lives a big life from a small space. She flies planes, sails boats, and rides horses, but as a native New Yorker, has no idea how to drive a car. A long-time entertainment and media industry professional, she lives in Brooklyn with her partner and their two cats.

Together, they are co-authors of the gay romance series Love in Los Angeles, set in the film and television industry — Starling (September 10, 2014), Doves (January 21, 2015), and Phoenix (June 10, 2015) — from Torquere Press. Their gay romance novella series Love’s Labours, set in the theater world — Midsummer (May 2015), and Twelfth Night (Fall 2015), is from Dreamspinner Press. They also have a story in Best Gay Romance 2015 from Cleis Press and edited by Felice Picano. You can find them on the web athttp://www.Avian30.com

 

Find & Follow Erin and Racheline Online:

Joint Blog:http://Avian30.com 

Joint Facebook Page:https://www.facebook.com/Erin.and.Racheline

Erin’s Twitter:https://twitter.com/erincmcrae 

Racheline’s Twitter:https://twitter.com/racheline_m 

Erin’s Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8323893.Erin_McRae 

Racheline’s Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1015335.Racheline_Maltese 

Erin’s Amazon Author Page:http://www.amazon.com/ErinMcRae/e/B00M7A0SVC

Racheline’s Amazon Author Page:http://www.amazon.com/RachelineMaltese/e/B001JRVS2C

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