Jo’s note: details of the giveaway at the end of the post
A male author once asked how I, a straight female, could write gay romance. I told him the same way he writes about nymphomaniacs and serial killers and other authors build a parallel universe or write tales of werewolves, shifters and creepy fantasy critters that go bump in the night—you don’t need firsthand experience to write a book all you need is a vivid imagination. Check out a few pics of really buff guys, pick your two faves, add a tiny pinch of real life plus a healthy helping or three of what if?, stir well and who knows where the journey will take you? If you’re lucky, to the moon baby. To the moon and if you’re really adventurous maybe even beyond the moon to something a little darker, a little edgier, something that makes your heart beat faster, until you’re on the edge of your seat, biting your nails and wishing like crazy you were there and he was— I’ll leave you to fill in the blanks here, or not.
So why do I write about men making love to other men? The truth? I adore men. I love that little boy who lives within all of them, the shy pride in a race well run or a fight well fought, and their fierce defense of those they love. And I love a nicely toned male body complete with a tight butt and all the trimmings, it’s a major turn-on. Okay, I know, this type of perfection has more to do with fantasy than reality, but that’s okay, we’re allowed to dream and so I write about that, not real life.
I write erotic romance, mostly stories that end hea (happily ever after). Once in a while, as in Missing, Presumed Dead http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/MissingPresumedDead.html, at the end of the story, Greg, my hero is still searching for The One. But I promise, in Greg’s case, The One is out there, just waiting in the wings for the right moment to step into Greg’s life and for me to write their story.
There’s a question that’s been bothering me for a while, and this seems like the perfect opportunity to find out if a reader or two would be willing to satisfy my curiosity: Does the setting/location of a book affect your decision to purchase, or is it the blurb that makes you buy? The reason I ask is because I’ve noticed contemporary stories set in foreign locations often don’t do as well as those set in North America.
For example, Blues In The Night – http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/BluesInNight.html, is set in the South of France yet it didn’t seem to appeal to readers in the same way as I think it may have if it had been set somewhere here like maybe New York or L.A..
I mostly write contemporary m/m—usually guys in their thirties with real life problems, along with a few m/m/f adventures, the odd paranormal, and a couple of time travels. My favorite theme though is “reunions”—reuniting characters who for whatever reason missed connecting the first time around and have been given a second chance.
This is the basis for my latest release ANYTHING YOU CAN DO –
As teenagers, Devon and Julian denied their feelings for one another and avoided scandal by becoming fierce competitors and sworn enemies, even engaging in physical fights on occasion. After finishing school, Devon went to live and work in New York. Julian took his dreams of becoming a movie star to California and disappeared from view.
Now, years later, they’re both back home in Bayview and those old feelings are still very much alive and well. But Devon needs to focus all his efforts on bringing his family’s beach resort back to life. Julian has to decide what to do with his late grandfather’s house. Should he turn it into a B&B, or should he sell the property and move on?
It wasn’t the right time for them when they were in high school, and now, with problems to solve and decisions to make, the timing seems no better…
“You were right when you said it wasn’t our time when we were in high school. We were smart to keep our mouths shut and our dicks in our pants. If we hadn’t, we both know the world as we knew it would have rained on our parade big time. They’d have turned what was fragile and beautiful into something dark and ugly. Well, I’ve got a newsflash for you, babe. Now isn’t our time either.
“You’re at a crossroads, trying to decide whether to turn left, right or continue straight on. I understand all that. For me, my main focus has to be the resort, at least for now. If I don’t generate enough cash to turn things around over this next year, I’ll be in the same boat as you. I’ll be wondering whether to sell and move on to something else, or hang in and hope for better days ahead.”
“God, Dev, I’m so sorry. I shouldn’t have said anything.”
My anger had run its course, leaving me feeling flat and depressed. “I’m glad you did. I’ve always wondered and now I know.”
He took a step closer. “Doesn’t do either of us much good, though, does it?”
I forced a smile. “I wouldn’t say that. If we take out the hope factor, then we’ll have to stop dreaming and get real. Right?”
“You really think so?”
“No.” I felt ten times more miserable than I had two seconds ago. “If I thought it would help, I’d say let’s find someplace private and get it on. But we both know, with the way things are right now, it would only make it worse. Your life is too unsettled. You have decisions to make, the kind that don’t happen overnight. A few weeks from now, depending on what you decide, you could be miles away. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I won’t settle for scraps or ask for promises you’re not able to give. I want it all, babe. The two of us together forever. If I can’t have that, then forget it.”
Before I could stop him, Julian moved in even closer. He took my hand and pressed it against his cock. He was every bit as aroused as I was, and I wondered why he was doing this. Showing me what I was missing? Trying to convince me to grab what we wanted while we could?
The next thing I knew, his arms were around me, holding me tight. His velvety soft lips touched mine, and a shiver ran through my body. Emotion tightened my throat. I smelled his scent; I felt the thud of his heartbeat and the wetness of our tears against my cheek. Suddenly, I understood. Maybe one day we’d get lucky and have it all. Maybe all we’d ever have was this one special moment—a simple declaration of love that needed no words.
I have no idea how long we stood there, locked in each other’s arms. And I have no idea what made us finally step apart. I only know whoever said it was better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all, must have been where I was at this exact moment at least once in his life.
If this was goodbye, and I had a feeling it was, I’d just have to put him out of my mind and move on.
Cool mysteries and hot romance – http://www.chrisgrover.ca
Latest Release: ANYTHING YOU CAN DO – http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure
Chris has generously offered a choice of ebooks from her backlist to one lucky commenter. The draw will be made on Monday 30th July, 9 am GMT, so get commenting to be in with a chance!