April 18, 2015
Thank you very much for joining me today and on through this evening! I had a great time with everyone, and I’m looking forward to doing this again in October when The Shape of Honey is released.
The winners of the signed copies are Angela and Susan.
Please e-mail me to give me your info to send out the books. My e-mail address is Kibrightly@gmail.com. Thanks again for a great release party!
April 18, 2015
For the old school die hards out there, you will perhaps notice a quote from A Midsummer’s Night Dream in Threefold Love. Bonus points for anyone who can tell me what it is in the comments! You will get an extra chance in the signed book raffle (which draws to a close at 9:30 p.m. tonight). I chose to put the quote in because I’m a Shakespeare hound, but also because I don’t think there is anything more synonymous with love than Shakespeare’s work. A Midsummer Night’s Dream with its endless confusion because of magic and chicanery also appealed to me as something that would be a nice addition to my own work, plus, Andrew’s a high school English teacher. Of course he has a hard on for Shakespeare. I also talk about Romeo and Juliet, something I did not quote because my book is not a tragedy, and also because it’s sooo over used. Lovely, but overused. The other piece of classic love literature I talked about was The Symposium. The Symposium was one of my first literary classic loves, and if you haven’t read it, it’s about a party where a bunch of people get drunk and talk about LOVE. Because that’s what people used to do for fun. Hell, that’s what I still like to do for fun.
April 18, 2015
Xavier Hobbs was a Combat Engineer and a former Captain in the U.S. Army. My decision to write about a soldier wasn’t immediate. I tend to start writing by the seat of my pants and then plot. Xavier came to me half formed at best before I started writing and discovering him. When I finally realized he was going to be a decommissioned officer I felt comfortable with the idea. Growing up my family had a lot of military pride because my grandfather served in the Korean War, and I lived with him and my grandmother. He never saw active combat, exactly. He was stationed in Japan and drove soldiers to doctor’s appointments (and there was a lot of subtle joking about the Clap and prostitutes that I didn’t get until years later). As a young child my grandmother made sure we were always at the Veteran’s Day and Fourth of July parades, and I always helped her fundraise for The American Legion and the Ladies Auxiliary. There was a lot of old timey, patriotic feeling at our house. I learned all of the verses to The Star Spangled Banner (I bet most of you didn’t even know there was more than one verse, right? Honestly, you’re not missing much.) and all of the words to You’re a Grand Old Flag. Of course, Xavier left the military and he’s a modern man, but there are some lingering attitudes across generations about loyalty, as well as some differing attitudes about what service to your country means. It was interesting to delve into these ideas a bit with Xavier.
How many of you have military families?
April 18, 2015
I really enjoyed world creation with my story. One of my favorite places to construct in this book was The Mug House, which is pretty much the coffee shop of my dreams. It’s a decadent, spacious, beautiful place created from a remodel of a Victorian Era mansion. There are marble tables, pastries, and specialty blended coffees. I think the fact that I wrote this book at four a.m. while sitting in a coffee shop most mornings lead to me writing in the perfect coffee shop, something to be a sharp counterpoint to what I was actually dealing with that early in the morning, mostly fast food chains. There is one beautiful little coffee shop I loved writing in, but it was more of a treat at the time and not someplace I got to work at regularly. The Mug House quickly took on a life of its own. Mercy owns the place, along with her husband Roy, and she serves special blends to people while she conducts her own, secretive sort of magic in the background of my novel. She’s a witch of sorts, and we’ll see more of her in the next book, learn more about her story and what, exactly, she does, but for now she’s content to serve coffee, match make, and meddle. I admit, The Mug House is somewhat bittersweet because I’ve had to give up regular coffee due to not wanting to twitch all around at the end of each day. One of my favorite things about walking into a coffee shop is that first moment when the smell hits you full blast. I also like the white noise of the coffee being ground and the espresso machine. It’s soothing, in a strange way, just to know other people are alive and doing things in the world. What’s your favorite thing about your favorite coffee shop?
April 18, 2015
Threefold Love is a paranormal romance, basically because paranormal and “low magic fantasy” are some of my own true loves when it comes to reading. I like extremely realistic paranormal fantasy. Some of my favorite authors are Laurell K. Hamilton and Lynsay Sands, though I will read pretty much anything and everything under the sun given the proper nudge. I like crime dramas, classics, and science fiction. I’m also especially fond of Chuck Palahniuk and Kurt Vonnegut, mostly because I like it when things get surreal, though I don’t draw any parallels between my writing and theirs. One of my favorite books of all time I Laurell K.’s Guilty Pleasures, a darkly optimistic book about a vampire executioner. One of the things I love in the books I read is memorable, realistic characters-okay, sometimes I’ll just settle for memorable, and that’s what I try to do with Xavier. He’s not an especially special guy in so many ways, but he’s real, and relatable, and maybe even someone you might know. Andrew is a little flamboyant and testy as well as being a school teacher and a fun guy to be around. Duncan is sweet and even keeled, but he’s a demanding partner in the bedroom. I wanted everyone to remember these guys after they put the book down, and wonder what happens to them next. (Hint: I’m working on a second book, this time centering on Andrew’s younger brother Curtis.)
Who are some of your favorite characters of all time?
April 18, 2015
One exciting thing that happened after I’d finished this book and submitted it to Dreamspinner Press was that Pennsylvania, where Threefold Love takes place, changed its marriage laws! Gay marriage was now legal in Pennsylvania. I did a victory dance with everyone else in the state who is inclined to support or wave the rainbow flag and then realized I had to change my book. In doing so I ended up politicizing my book in a different way than I intended. The original draft had Andrew and Duncan not getting married for ten years because it wasn’t legal. Well, now it was, and there was no good reason I could come up with that these two men wouldn’t have run out and gotten married right away…except Andrew works for a Catholic school.
Andrew likes his job. So, the reason that Andrew and Duncan weren’t married yet when they met Xavier went from the state they live in to the Catholic Church. There have been several teachers at Catholic schools in the news recently losing their jobs because they are gay, so I unintentionally found Andrew’s problem is more a current issue than I’d anticipated when I made this change in the manuscript. I’ve been watching all of these stories unfold with a keen eye to the resolution, namely that the teachers don’t win even when the community supports them. Civil rights are a constant work in progress, so I’m actually really happy that these cases have been getting the attention they have, even when they don’t work out for the people who are getting fired. I’m not Catholic, and I know there are a lot of arguments used to defend these types of decisions, but to me the parallel to gay marriage arguments—gay marriage that we now legally have in the state of Pennsylvania, one of the most conservative states in the North East— will likely be the lynchpin that starts the ball rolling the other direction. For now, Andrew’s job is safe, though who knows what will happen in the future.
April 18, 2015
For anyone who wonders what was going through Curtis’s mind that first night-if any of you have burned through the book yet…
Last night, they were awful. Just fucking loud, and I can tell you, listening to my older brother have sex with his boyfriends? Not my favorite past time. Boyfriends. Plural. How does that even happen? I cheat once, okay, repeatedly, but I really have a problem saying no, and I get dumped. How’s that fair?…twice. Dumped twice. Because I was seeing two people. At least one of them knew about the other. That counts for something, right?
Okay, maybe I liked listening a little. I’m pretty sure I heard Xavier at one point, this sound that crawled inside my stomach and just set everything throbbing in my groin. Maybe…maybe I pretended my brother wasn’t in there and…OH, fuck, this is so embarrassing. I’m not gross or anything, but Xavier’s…candy. He’s eye candy.
Whatever. Who cares? It’s not like anyone else really knows what I did. I could have been working it to anything. But they were so fucking loud and I could hear Duncan. I mean, I just know it was him. There’s no way it was anyone else.
There was moaning in the hallway. Moaning. And I’m not supposed to get, um…interested?
I couldn’t sleep the rest of the night. Not well, anyway. I kept wondering what it was like to have two people who actually…care. That’s…just unbelievable. I’m not jealous, okay? I just don’t understand why Andrew gets to do anything he wants. Everything he wants. And no one’s mad at him. No one tells him they never want to see him again, take his shit and get out. Mom doesn’t freak out on him the way she does me. Oh, no, he just gets to bang two dudes who think he’s the shit. And I just get screwed.
It’s not fair. Life is so unfair.
I’m not jealous.
April 18, 2015
I’m going to start the production process on The Shape of Honey with Dreamspinner Press soon. It’s a shifter book about werewolves, maybe my favorite paranormal subject of all time. Yulian Volkov kind of hates everyone, mostly, except that he doesn’t, not really. He loathes the way other werewolves behave here in the United States, so different from what he grew up with in Europe. Not that werewolves weren’t violent there, and there weren’t territory wars, but it’s nothing compared to the shear brutality of the packs here. To get away from it all he moved out into the country away from the seat of pack power in his territory, taking over his Grandmother’s land, turning it into a top notch Meadery. He still has to attend pack meetings occasionally, however, and here and there’s he’s caught glimpses of Rolly Witten, and he likes what he’s seen.
Rolly is young, and unlike the older members of the pack and most of his agemates he’s done with being a wolf. As far as he can tell it’s a never ending pain in the ass—pack meetings, animal instincts, and being beholden to the moon? No thanks. He likes shopping in a grocery store and he’s seen animal planet. He’s definitely not “Werewolves, Yay!” like the rest of the pack seems to be. And it doesn’t help matters that the only profession he’s ever aspired to has been honing his breaking and entering skills with his best friend Violet. She’d actually picked the profession for both of them because wherever she goes Rolly follows. They’ve always been best friends, and she knows all of his secrets, even the one he’s worried will get him kicked out of the pack. As it turns out, it’s getting arrested that finally gets him ripped away from the safety of the pack, leaving him to the dangers of fighting into another pack because Rolly knows trying to mate in will be a disaster of apocalyptic proportions.
Except fighting in is kind of synonymous with suicide.
Or will Yulian be able to convince Dean, the pack leader, there is something more useful that can be done with Rolly? Something that will keep him safe and keep him out of trouble?
I’m excited to start working on The Shape of Honey with Dreamspinner Press because I had such a wonderful time getting Threefold Love ready for public consumption with them. <3
April 18, 2015
Andrew Landry is a redhead. Why, oh why, is he a redhead? First of all, I’m one of those people who adore redheads—actually, I adore every color combo people come in, if we’re measuring for attractiveness, so long as the people attached to them have attractive personalities—but, I have a special fondness for red hair. There’s something wonderful about pale skin, especially when paired with striking green or blue eyes with fairy kisses of freckles dusted here and there on cheeks. (Andrew’s eyes are a hunter green.) I fell into a daily habit of ogling things like this when I was writing Threefold Love.
The internet is a wonderful thing, yes? Who is your favorite redhead? (Feel free to drop pictures.) Or, failing favorite redhead, favorite picture to ogle. *grins*
April 18, 2015
Duncan loves his mean, ornery cat because she loves him. It’s an affair no one else can understand because, frankly, Lala hates everyone else. We’ve all met those cats. The cats we can’t understand, or we just want to pet only to pull back a bloodied hand and shout, “But why!?” When I met my significant other his roommate had a gorgeous cat I simply loved. He was about the size of a small Cocker spaniel, jet black, and had an extra little cat digit on each hand with extra large knives on his paws. He was so pretty everyone wanted to pet him, but he was also testy, and even when he wasn’t? He bit you to show he loved you. The first time it happened to me, I’d taken my life into my hands to scratch the wee beast’s chin, and he turned his head and nipped hard enough I was sure he’d broken the flesh. My significant other crowed joyfully, “OH, he likes you!,” while I tried to decide if he was insane or not. Over the next few months I watched the cat draw blood and minimally maim my significant other and his roommate while they both fawned over him, and I decided I would never fall for that trap just because he’s cute. In the end I climbed on board too though because he was soft and warm and a lovely nap companion, until you woke up with a claw hooked in your nostril. The best cat love is apparently the most dangerous. So, Shifty was based on this cat that I loved, though Shifty definitely has a personality all her own. Beware of Kitty Ninjas!
Anyone have a cat they loved to hate, or just plain love?