Posts in the LGBT genre

Q&A

Q&A: Ralph Josiah Bardsley of THE PHOTOGRAPHER’S TRUTH

The Photographers Truth Ralph Josiah Bardsley

We are so happy to have Ralph Josiah Bardsley as our guest today! One of our favorite M/M Romance authors, Bardsley’s so good at capturing emotion it’s hard to bring one of his books with you on the subway. There’s just too much to wistfully sigh at—which is great at home, less so on public transportation. But it’s also exactly why we just had to know more about him and The Process! Check out our QA below and don’t miss The Photographer’s Truth, out now!


What would you say is the easiest part of writing?

For me, the easiest part is the first draft.  I give myself a lot of leeway during this part of the process – I let my imagination go wherever it wants to.  That’s also where I have the most fun.

 

What’s the most difficult part?

The editing process is definitely the most difficult process for me.  Some writers love that phase – honing the language, cleaning up grammar and plot.  While I respect the focus and the effort it takes, it doesn’t come naturally to me.  Thankfully, I’ve got an amazing editor at Bold Strokes Books by the name of Jerry Wheeler who makes that process much smoother.

 

What love story stands out in your mind as the most compelling?

In general, I like a love story that requires the characters to struggle with their own demons as part of the process of falling in love.  Specifically, Mary Renault’s The Charioteer is my favorite love story. It is set in WWII and the characters are at war – both in the literal sense and within themselves.  Another more recent love story that I found absolutely compelling was A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara.  But have a box of tissue and a glass of wine handy if you read that one – you’ll need it.

 

Are there certain moods or scenes that are easier to write for you?

I’ve been told that I write descriptive scenes well – that I can make someone feel as if they’re walking down a street in Paris or Boston.  I’ll be honest; I think my best scenes tend to be the ones that take place in Boston.  Though I haven’t lived there for years, I spent most of my twenties in the city and everything about it is still absolutely visceral in my memory.

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Q&A

Q&A: J.L. Merrow of BLOW DOWN

Blow Down J.L. Merrow

You know what’s a great sign that we’ll love a book? When an author has great taste in pretty much everything even vaguely Romance related.

Okay, so we’re biased. But we second every single favorite of the brilliant J.L. Merrow, author of Blow Down.

Even Deadpool? Especially Deadpool.


FAVORITE MOVIES:

 

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

Now, this is a tough one as I’m more of a sci-fi/action movie gal. But here goes:

  1. Deadpool. The romance between ‘Pool and Vanessa is so touching: a real meeting of souls. His crazy matches her crazy. Morena Baccarin is drop-dead gorgeous, which never hurts—and get this: she is (unbelievably) 37 to Ryan Reynolds’ 39. How often do you see a leading man pushing forty paired with a lady only 2 years younger?
  2. The X-Men What do you mean, there’s no actual Professor X/Magneto romance?
  3. The Hobbit: the love story between Aidan Turner’s Kili and Evangeline Lilly’s Tauriel is so sweet and fraught with external conflict and tragedy. Poor loves. And great to see a height difference that goes against society’s norm when the guy is not insanely rich/powerful.
  4. Guy Richie’s Sherlock Holmes The subtext is very rapidly becoming the text!
  5. Hellboy. He’s a demon from the fires of damnation: she’s a pyrokinetic out of control. It’s a match made in Hell.

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Exclusive Excerpt, Guest Post

Guest Post: “Sex Talk—Co-Writing Hot Scenes in Cyberlove” by Megan Erickson and Santino Hassell

Fast Connection Megan Erickson Santino Hassell

Santino Hassell and Megan Erickson are back! And not only have they brought us a hilarious behind-the-scenes look at the writing process, it’s also deliciously not safe for work. (Consider this a warning and a teaser!) That’s not enough? Well, hold the phone, because we’ve also got an excerpt of Fast Connection, out now!


A lot of people ask us how we co-write sex scenes. Is it fun? Awkward? Uncomfortable?

Well, let’s just say it’s a little bit of each but usually it’s hilarious (mostly because we are ridiculous). Over the past several months we amassed a list of amusing (to us) gems from our sex-related conversations, and we’re sharing it with you guys. Anyone looking over our shoulders were a little….taken aback but we know we can trust romance readers to get it. 😉

1.“So I got this really cool wall-mounting idea…”

 

S: This scene took place during one of the famous dirty Skype scenes in Strong Signal. That book was fun. Also, Megan said that to me at random one day. I’m pretty sure I just rolled with it and was all “tell me more!” By then, it was normal for us to pitch ideas out of the blue.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “That One Time at Camp” by Jenny Holiday

His Heart’s Revenge Jenny Holiday

Ah, summer camp. The idea of summer camp appeals to me so much. A break from school and parents. Stargazing, canoeing, idolizing the counselors, sharing secrets by the campfire while you promise to be BEST FRIENDS FOREVER AND EVER AMEN with your crew.

So when I got a chance to write a book that included some flashbacks to summer camp (and some modern-day camping, too), I jumped at it.

The only problem was that, like many things I tend to get excited about, there’s fantasy and then there’s reality.

I only went to camp once. It was the Girl Scout variety. I think it was the summer between second and third grade. My friend Kim and I packed up our sleeping bags and bug repellant and headed for the north woods.

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Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Q&A

Q&A: James Lear of THE SUN GOES DOWN

The Sun Goes Down James Lear

Today we take a small peek into the mind of James Lear, the brilliant author behind The Sun Goes Down, out today! Get a glimpse at what influences and inspires one of our favorite erotica writers.


FAVORITE MOVIES

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

Now, Voyager with Bette Davis, which is the ultimate romantic wish-fulfilment/self-denial movie.

Showgirls, which is an anti-romantic movie with a lot of romantic elements in it.

Brokeback Mountain, which is incredibly depressing but does feature a very persuasive love story.

Cabaret, which I found intensely romantic as a young man

If…, the Lindsay Anderson movie about a revolution in a boys’ boarding school, which includes a great love theme between two boys.

 

Describe your favorite scene from each one!

Now, Voyager: the scene when Charlotte descends the stairs on the boat for the first time, we see her fantastic shoes first then pan up to take in the whole transformation. It’s probably my favourite scene in any film, ever.

Showgirls: the scene in which Nomi has sex in a swimming pool. It’s berserk.

Brokeback Mountain: the scene in which the two men are reunited for the first time after their initial affair, and they can’t keep their hands off each other. They have a passionate kiss just outside the house, as I recall.

Cabaret: the dialogue goes something like ‘Fuck Max!’ ‘I do!’ ‘So do I.’ I thought that was really exciting and daring at the time.

If….: There’s a scene in which the pretty younger boy watches the older boy (played by Richard Warwick, one of the most beautiful men ever in a film) in the gymnasium. It’s really intense.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Daisy” by Amy Lane

Fish Out of Water Amy Lane

I live a tiny life—most of us do, unless we’re traveling.  But for most of us, work is a thing of routine. Even writers, whom many people assume simply write when the “muse” moves us, set hours when we write for a living. “These are the hours I work. This is when I have to be productive. I can quit when these tasks are done.”

And outside of work, the rest of our lives are often circumscribed. I swear, I could put my car on an electric track that went from the gym to one kid’s school to the other kid’s school, to Del Taco to the grocery store, and 80% of the time, those are the only places I’d need to go.

But in spite of having a predictable tortoise life, I have a rather hoppy rabbit mind, and if it doesn’t have new places to hop to, I shall go simply mad.

Books are my escape—but reading time is limited to in my car as I’m waiting for my kids to get out, or a few precious pages a night before I fall asleep. On the whole, most of my brain travels happen from talking to other people.

Talking to strangers is my gateway to the world.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “What You Love” by Amy Lane

Selfie by Amy Lane

I was sort of taken aback by the question, and I shouldn’t have been.

“How did you research the book Selfie, and what steps did you take to make it authentic?”

My first thought (and I have had this one since I started writing) was “I am a terrible fraud!” because I couldn’t remember doing any research for this book.

And then my actual brain kicked in (as opposed to my panic brain), and I realized that I’d been researching this book before I started writing.

When I was a kid—eight, nine, ten—my parents made three trips to the Pacific Northwest. Oregon, Washington, Canada—I fell deeply in love.

When I was a teenager, I was one of the deciding voices to send my marching band to Victoria, Canada for our trip in my senior year, because my burning passion never dimmed.  As an adult, I’ve talked Mate into taking me up there twice—for our 10th anniversary, and as part of a business trip—and that area and I renewed our affair.

Oh yes, from Goose Mountain to the Seattle Fish Market to Puget Sound, I have researched that area simply by being in love.  Now, that doesn’t mean I didn’t have to look up some maps—because my head for directions is limited to three coordinates: Pure Fucking Magic.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “When an English Professor Writes Dirty Books…” by Paul Russell

Boys of Life by Paul Russell

“I see you’ve got another dirty book out,” one of my colleagues remarked recently.

“A very literary dirty book,” I gently corrected him. I tried not to take his comment amiss, though it did make me sigh. And remember—

—my dissertation advisor haranguing me for having thrown away my promise as a serious scholar.
—a senior administrator at my college lamenting, “I’m all for having well-known writers on the faculty, I just wish we weren’t saddled with this one.”
—a student confessing that his parents advised him not to study creative writing with me, given the kind of books I write.

I always have to remember that I am not entirely respectable.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: Avery Cassell on Erotic Romance & BEHROUZ GETS LUCK

Behrouz Gets Lucky Avery Cassell

I’m ecstatic to say that Behrouz Gets Lucky is an erotic romance that seduces any audience who loves heart-stopping tender romance, combined with smut that is guaranteed to get your naughty bits wet and hard. The universal needs of love, intimacy, sex, and pleasure are the foundations of Behrouz and Lucky’s relationship. Every murmured “I love you”, luxuriously eaten post-coital snack of cake in bed, and sweating multiple orgasms on the Persian carpet clinches the deal. We’re all in this world together.

When I wrote Behrouz Gets Lucky, I anticipated that my readers would be mostly from the queer, leather, and transgender communities. I wasn’t certain that other folks would get it, or even want to get it, but I was okay with that. I wish that the LGBTQ community was one big happy family, but it isn’t. Although there can be some crossover, many times each subculture is isolated and at odds with one another. So, I wasn’t sure if gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals would relate to my novel, let alone people from the vanilla and straight communities! Would others find the smoking hot, sweet, love story of Behrouz Gets Lucky enticing too? Would the romance, the yearning for love, humor, and humanity carry over?

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Giveaway

Guest Post: “About Words” by Amy Lane

Selfie by Amy Lane

I love words—most writers do. There’s something magical that happens when both sides of a writer’s brain conjoin.  The language centers and the imagination centers–which are in opposite hemispheres—work together to create a reality that did not exist before phoneme and morpheme collaborated to paint a picture.  Suddenly words shape the things we imagine, and the things we imagine search desperately for…

Words.

Words equal ideas.

In a lecture about Orwell’s essay Politics and the English Language and his book 1984  I used to do the following exercise with my classes—everybody follow along.

Okay, everybody think of the word “color”.  What comes to mind?

Now everyone think of the word “red”.  What do you think about?

Now think about “dark red”.  What do you think about now?

Now think about “candy-apple red.”  What images do you get?

Now think about “crimson”, or “vermillion”, or “burgundy”.  What do you think about now?

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