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#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!


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.



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 at


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Erin’s Goodreads: 

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