June 21, 2015
Ich bedanke mich herzlich bei Ariel Tachna, die sich bereit erklärt hat, an diesem Interview teilzunehmen und euch Lesern Frage und Antwort zu stehen. Auch ein großes Dankeschön an euch Leser, denn ohne euch wäre dieses wunderbare Interview nicht zustande gekommen.
Ariel: Erstens, das sind großartige Fragen. Ich danke allen Lesern, die sie vorgeschlagen haben. Und ich hoffe, meine Antworten sind genauso interessant wie die Fragen an sich.
Was hat dich dazu gebracht, M/M Romanzen zu schreiben?
2004 war ich aktives Mitglied in einer Der Herr der Ringe Yahoo-Gruppe, die den Büchern gleichermaßen – wenn nicht sogar ein wenig mehr – wie auch den Filmen gewidmet war. Ein anderes Mitglied erwähnte Fanfiktions. Hoffnungslos naiv fragte ich: „Was sind Fanfiktions?“ Und die Person antwortete, das wären von Fans geschriebene Geschichten im Universum eines anderen Autors. Ich war fasziniert. Wisst ihr, ich war total in Aragorn und Arwen verschossen, und war total unzufrieden wie wenig Seiten Tolkien den beiden in seinem Buch gewidmet hat. Daher war die Idee mehr über ihre Geschichte zu lesen, um die Lücken zu füllen, faszinierend. Ich suchte und fand dabei alles Mögliche, inklusive Geschichten über Aragorn und … Legolas. Das ließ mich die Stirn runzeln, dann schüttelte ich mit dem Kopf und las weiterhin die Geschichten über Aragorn und Arwen, aber diese Aragorn / Legolas Geschichten tauchten immer wieder auf. Daher sprang ich ins eiskalte Wasser und las eine von ihnen. Und dann eine weitere. Und ich sagte zu mir selbst: „Ich kann das auch. Ich kann es sogar besser.“ Deshalb versuchte ich es. Ich schrieb eine epische Der Herr der Ringe Fanfiktion (180 Kapitel, 690 000 Wörter – ich brauchte ein Jahr) und war süchtig. Ich fand eine Online-Community und die Leidenschaft zu schreiben, die ich irgendwann nach meinem Universitätsabschluss verloren hatte. Das war vor elf Jahren, und ich habe es nie bereut.
Findest du neben dem Schreiben noch Zeit, um zu lesen? Was sind deine Lieblingsbücher, die du immer wieder lesen könntest?
Heutzutage finde ich wenig Zeit um zu lesen, aber wenn ich es tue, tendiere ich dazu, auf meine alten Lieblingsbücher zurückzugreifen. Melanie Rawns Die Drachenprinz-Saga (Dragon Prince series), alles von Rhianne Aile, Zahra Owens und natürlich auch von Mary Calmes.
Ich hoffe, die Frage ist nicht zu privat, wenn ja, musst du natürlich nicht darauf antworten: Wie vereinst du deine Liebe zum Schreiben mit deinem Real Life (Familie, Freunden, dem Partner etc.), ohne dass einer dabei zu kurz kommt?
Es ist ein Balanceakt, so viel ist sicher. Es hilft, dass ich von zu Hause aus arbeite, so habe ich einen recht flexiblen Zeitplan. Wenn meine Kinder in der Schule sind, versuche ich so viel meiner Arbeit und meines Schreibens zu erledigen, wie ich nur kann, sodass ich ihnen, wenn sie nach Hause kommen, die Aufmerksamkeit geben kann, die sie brauchen. Sie sind jung, aber keine Babys, und wollen daher nicht, dass ihre Mama ständig an ihrer Seite ist. Daher kann es sein, dass ich an manchen Nachmittagen oder Abenden mehr schaffe.
Schreibst du an mehreren Büchern gleichzeitig oder konzentrierst du dich lieber nur auf eines? Planst du eine Serie im Vorhinein oder ‘passiert’ sie einfach?
Es variiert. Zur Zeit gibt es fünf Bücher, die beendet werden wollen, aber ich schreibe nur an zwei von ihnen aktiv. An einem schreibe ich zusammen mit Nicki Bennett, das andere ist ein Soloprojekt.
Gibt es bestimmte Stärken und Schwächen, die du als Autor besitzt?
Meine Stärke ist sicherlich die Tiefe meiner Charaktere. Es haben nicht nur die zwei Hauptprotagonisten eine Geschichte, sondern jeder, sogar wenn es niemals auf ein Blatt Papier geschrieben wird. Das ist eines der Dinge, das ich so sehr an Serien liebe. Ich habe die Möglichkeit mehr von ihrer Geschichte und ihnen zu zeigen, da sie immer wieder auftauchen, oft sogar in unterschiedlichen Rollen.
Meine Schwäche ist mein etwas langatmiger Schreibstil. Ich kann eine Geschichte nicht eher enden lassen als dass sie für mich komplett ist, unerheblich ob andere denken, dass es so besser wäre.
Woher nimmst du deine Ideen? Was inspiriert dich? Fließen private Erlebnisse oder Menschen, die du getroffen hast, in deine Geschichten mit ein?
Mich inspiriert alles. Ein kleiner Teil einer zufällig gehörten Konversation, eine bestimmte Stelle in einem Musikstück, das Lachen meiner Kinder. Ich verwende Ereignisse und Menschen, die mir begegnet sind. The Path, zum Beispiel, wurde alleine von meiner Reise nach Peru vor zwei Jahren inspiriert. Seducing C. C. ist eine Mischung aus Leuten und Ereignissen von den Sommercamps, die ich früher besucht und in denen ich 16 Jahre lang gearbeitet habe.
Wachsen dir manche Protagonisten mehr ans Herz als andere? Wenn ja, welche magst du am liebsten?
Ich muss mich in sie verlieben, um über sie schreiben zu können, da sie ansonsten nicht glaubhaft sind. Aber ja, manche bleiben bei mir. Jean und Raymond von der Blutspartnerschaft Serie (Partnership in Blood) werden immer einen besonderen Platz in meinem Herzen einnehmen. Dasselbe gilt für Gabriel und Lucio von The Inventor’s Companion, obwohl es hierfür einen anderen Grund gibt.
Du hast zeitgenössische, historische, western und paranormale Geschichten geschrieben. Welchen Stil bevorzugst du und warum?
Ich liebe sie alle. Manche Geschichten können in jedem Schauplatz angesiedelt sein, aber manch andere brauchen ein bestimmtes Setting, damit sie glaubhaft sind und funktionieren. Ich liebe auch die Herausforderung, Welten zu bauen, vor allem in den Genres historisch, paranormal und Sci-Fi. Ich kann keine Abkürzungen in diesen Geschichten verwenden, da nichts in diesen Welten dem Leser wirklich vertraut ist.
Gehörst du auch zu den Autoren, die von der Muse ständig Arschtritte bekommen, vor allem, wenn sie etwas will, das dir aktuell so gar nicht in den Zeitplan passt?
Ich bin ein totaler Sklave meiner Musen. Manchmal habe ich nicht mal mehr einen Entwurf, da sie ihn sowieso ignorieren. Ich kenne meine Charaktere (zumindest ein wenig), ich kenne die Situation, die sie zusammenbringt und ich kenne das Problem, das sie auseinanderhält, wenn ich mit dem Schreiben beginne. Ich denke, ich kenne auch das Ende, da ich weiß, dass sie am Ende zusammen und glücklich sein werden. Der Rest ist eine Entdeckungsreise für mich. Ich tu mein Bestes, um nicht im Weg zu stehen, und schreibe eher ihre Geschichte als sie meinen Ideen anzupassen.
Wie lange schreibst du durchschnittlich an einer Geschichte und wie sieht dein Schreiballtag im Allgemeinen aus?
Das hängt von der Länge und der Vielschichtigkeit der Geschichte ab, aber auch davon was sonst noch an Arbeit ansteht, Familie (wie viele Stunden kann ich freischaufeln, um zu schreiben) und wie stark mich diese Geschichte einfängt. Ich schrieb Perilous Partnership in fünf Wochen. Die Geschichte, an der ich jetzt arbeite, wird weniger als drei Wochen brauchen. Aber es gibt auch Bücher, für die ich Monate brauche.
Hast du schon einmal abfällige / beleidigende Bemerkungen zu deinen Büchern erhalten? Wenn ja, wie hast du darauf reagiert?
Ich bin mir sicher, dass es mehrere Leute gibt, die sich abfällig über meine Bücher äußerten, aber ich lese keine Reviews, da sie für die Leser da sind, nicht für mich. Es gab Leute, die überrascht waren, als sie herausfanden, dass ich Gay Romance schreibe, aber sie waren eher neugierig als verärgert.
Da du den Übersetzungsbereich bei Dreamspinner Press’ koordinierst, gab es natürlich auch ein paar Fragen zu diesem Thema.
Nach welchen Kriterien wird ein Buch zur Übersetzung ausgewählt? Inwiefern geht ich dabei auch auf Leserwünsche ein?
Wir berücksichtigen definitiv Leserwünsche. Wir schauen auch auf die Verkäufe der bereits veröffentlichten Bücher, um einen Trend in Hinblick auf Autoren und Genres zu finden. Von da aus versuchen wir ein Gleichgewicht zwischen neuen und klassischen Veröffentlichungen sowie Serien und Einzelbänden zu finden. Natürlich kann es passieren, dass manchmal alles um uns rum einstürzt und wir noch mal neu anfangen müssen. Aber das sind Dinge, die wir schon beim Planen der Veröffentlichungen versuchen zu berücksichtigen.
Wenn der erste Band einer Serie veröffentlicht wurde, werden die anderen Bände dann automatisch auch übersetzt oder macht ihr das von den Verkaufszahlen abhängig? In welchen Zeitabständen werden die Bücher von Serien übersetzt?
Wir versuchen, wenn möglich, ganze Serien zu übersetzen. Die Zeitabstände hängen von mehreren Faktoren ab, inklusive der Verfügbarkeit der Übersetzer und all den anderen Dingen, die ich oben schon genannt habe. Es hängt auch davon ab, ob die Bücher eine tatsächliche Serie sind, wo du kein wirkliches Ende bis zum letzten Band hast, oder ob es mehrere Spinn-Offs sind, wo jedes Buch für sich alleine steht und das nächste eher ein zusätzlicher Bonus als ein unabdingbarer Bestandteil ist.
Wie lange dauert es durchschnittlich, bis ein Buch übersetzt und überprüft ist? Kannst du uns ein wenig über den Übersetzungsablauf erzählen?
Es kann 8-16 Wochen dauern, ehe ein Buch übersetzt ist. Das hängt natürlich von der Länge und der Verfügbarkeit der Übersetzer ab. Dann dauert es weitere 4-8 Wochen, ehe das Lektorat fertig ist. Wenn die Geschichte lektoriert ist, geht sie zurück an den Übersetzer, damit der sie noch mal überarbeiten kann (für gewöhnlich dauert das eine weitere Woche). Anschließend wird die Übersetzung an die deutschen Koordinatoren geschickt, die sie noch mal überprüfen. Was anschließend geschieht, hängt von ihnen ab. Manchmal senden sie mir die Übersetzungen zu, damit sie veröffentlicht werden können. Manchmal senden sie sie zurück, damit sie noch mal lektoriert werden. Manchmal sagen sie mir auch, dass ich die Übersetzung wegschmeißen soll, da sie so nicht veröffentlicht werden kann und man sie neu übersetzen muss. Ihr seht, Übersetzungen sind kein linearer Prozess.
Warum erfährt man als deutschsprachiger Leser erst so kurzfristig, welche Übersetzungen in den nächsten Wochen erscheinen?
Wir hatten Probleme mit dem Formatieren unserer E-Books bei den Übersetzungen. Sogar wenn alles in der Word-Datei perfekt aussah, konnte es geschehen, dass das E-Book mit Fehlern zurückkam. Deshalb haben wir uns dazu entschieden, die Veröffentlichungen nicht eher bekannt zu geben, ehe wir das fertige E-Book ohne Formatierungsfehler vor uns liegen haben. Wir geben den Veröffentlichungstermin lieber kurzfristig an, sodass das Buch dann aber auch wirklich an dem Tag erscheint, als ihn früher bekannt zu geben, um dann das Datum wegen diverser Fehler zu ändern.
Letzte Woche veröffentliche DSP die deutsche Übersetzung von deinem Buch Dein Stern am Himmel (Inherit the Sky). Wie kommt es, dass die Geschichte im australischen Outback spielt und nicht wie viele andere Geschichten im Westen von Amerika? Hast du zu diesem Teil des Landes eine spezielle Bindung?
Das ist eine amüsante Geschichte. Ich folge ein paar Schauspielern und vor einigen Jahren wurden zwei von ihnen fälschlicherweise eine australische Staatsbürgerschaft in den Medien angedichtet. Ich lachte mit einer Freundin darüber, die dann zu mir sagte: „Ich mag die Idee, dass die zwei zusammen nach Australien abhauen und eine Schafsfarm leiten.“ Meine Musen stimmten ihr zu.
Cherish the Land ist der fünfte und zur Zeit auch letzte Band der Lang Downs Serie. Sind noch weitere Geschichten geplant oder müssen wir uns nach Cherish the Land von unseren Lieblingen verabschieden?
Cherish the Land ist das letzte Buch, das ich für die Serie derzeit geplant habe, aber wir haben ja schon über meine Musen geredet. Wenn sie entschließen, dass es eine weitere Story gibt, die erzählt werden muss, werde ich wie immer auf sie hören.
Wer war der am schwierigsten zu schreibende Charakter der Lang Downs Serie?
Ohne Zweifel war es Seth, da seine Wunden so tief waren. Aber zur selben Zeit war er überraschenderweise sehr offen, als er mich erst mal in seinen Kopf ließ. Ich hatte Angst, dass ich bzw. die Geschichte der Tiefe seiner Verletzungen nicht gerecht werden würde, und dass ich ihn weinerlich statt ernsthaft aufgewühlt für die Leser rüberkommen lasse.
Besteht die Möglichkeit, dass es einmal eine Kurzgeschichte zu Caines Onkel geben wird?
Ich habe darüber nachgedacht, bin aber noch nicht bereit Ja zu sagen. Aber ich habe auch schon vor langer Zeit gelernt auch nicht Nein zu sagen.
Was inspirierte dich, die Blutspartnerschaft Serie (Partnership in Blood series) zu schreiben? War es schon immer als Serie geplant oder hätte es eigentlich ein Einzelband werden sollen?
Vor 11 Jahren war ich Mitglied in einer Autorengruppe, wo es jeden Monat Schreibaufgaben zu einem gewissen Thema gab. Jeder, der wollte, konnte eine Geschichte schreiben und sie mit der Gruppe teilen, um so Kritik zu erhalten. Am Ende jedes Monats konnte jeder für seine Lieblingsgeschichte abstimmen. Im Oktober vor 11 Jahren bestand die Aufgabe darin, eine übernatürliche Geschichte zu schreiben. Ich habe aber zu der Zeit an drei großen und mehreren kleinen Projekten gearbeitet, weshalb ich mich dazu entschied, diesen Monat auszulassen. Dann schlief ich ein und träumte einen meiner lebhaftesten Träume. Ich sah, wie sich Alain und Orlando am Friedhof trafen. Ich sah Orlando, wie er aus einem Gebäude stolperte, während die Sonne hinter ihm aufging, und die Szene einfach nur bedrohlich wirkte. Und ich sah eine andere Szene, die ich aber nicht beschreiben werde, da ich das Ende spoilern würde. Als ich aufwachte, lag ich einfach nur da und starrte auf meine Zimmerdecke, versuchte währenddessen alle drei Szenen miteinander zu verknüpfen. Ich begann mit dem Schreiben am Nachmittag.
Ich wusste schon am Anfang, dass die Geschichte nicht kurz werden würde, aber ich stellte sie mir nie als Serie vor. Zu der Zeit wurden meine Bücher noch nicht veröffentlicht, deshalb habe ich nie einen Gedanken daran verschwendet, wie und ob der gesamte Plot in einem Band Platz finden würde. Zu der Zeit als meine Bücher 2007 veröffentlicht wurden, arbeitete ich seit 3 Jahren an Blutspartnerschaft (Partnership in Blood). Was später zu Allianz des Blutes (Alliance in Blood) werden würde, war zu der Zeit fertiggeschrieben, ebenso das meiste von Pakt des Blutes (Covenant in Blood), aber noch nicht mal die Hälfte der Geschichte war damit erzählt. Ich sprach mit Elizabeth North, der Geschäftsführerin von DSP, und wir entschieden, dass die Bücher in einem Zeitabstand von jeweils sechs Monaten veröffentlicht werden würden, damit ich genug Zeit hätte, um die Serie zu beenden. Ich hielt mich an den Zeitplan und schrieb Versöhnung des Blutes (Reparation in Blood). Ich sendete es per E-Mail an Elizabeth, mit dem Betreff: GESCHAFFT! Sie schrieb zurück und sagte: „Weißt du …“ und plötzlich war die Serie nicht mehr beendet. Schlussendlich beendete ich das letzte Buch im Oktober letzten Jahres, insgesamt 10 Jahre und eine Million Wörter später.
Was war die für dich am schwersten zu schreibende Szene in dieser Serie?
Ich denke, da gibt es ein Unentschieden zwischen dem Epilog von Versöhnung des Blutes (Reparation in Blood) und dem Prolog von Partnership Reborn. Wenn ich jetzt mehr sagen würde, würde ich aber manche Leser spoilern.
Zu guter Letzt. Woran arbeitest du zur Zeit?
Lasst mich mal nachdenken …
Nicki und ich arbeiten an All for Love, dem dritten Buch unserer historischen Haudegen Serie, die mit Checkmate beginnt.
Ich selbst arbeite an einer Romanze, die sich auf einer Pferdefarm in dem Ort, wo ich aufgewachsen bin, abspielt. Es ist eine Geschichte über Verlust, Genesung und das Lernen, erneut lieben zu können. Ich arbeite an einer Geschichte, die sich in einem Restaurant in Paris abspielt. Einer der Hauptprotagonisten ist ein grenzwertiger sexsüchtiger Kellner. Der andere ist ein amerikanischer Geschäftsmann, der eine Konferenz in Paris besucht. Sie treffen sich in diesem Restaurant, haben ein Techtelmechtel, das aber beiden mehr bedeutet als sie sich jemals gedacht hätten, und nun müssen sie entscheiden, wie es weitergehen soll. Ich schreibe auch an einer anderen Kellner-Geschichte, die in Montréal spielt. Es ist eine May-December Romance (Anm.: May-December Romance bedeutet, dass es bei einem Paar einen sehr großen Altersunterschied gibt. Die eine Person ist jung und ihm „Frühling“ seines / ihres Lebens – daher Mai, während die andere Person den Winter repräsentiert – deshalb Dezember) zwischen einem Berufskellner und einem jungen Mann, der die Tische in einer lokalen Schwulenbar bedient, um über die Runden zu kommen. Ich habe auch ca. die Hälfte des ersten Bandes einer Mystery-Serie geschrieben. Alle Bände folgen ein und demselben FBI Agenten für Vermisstenfälle bei fünf unterschiedlichen Fällen. Jeder Fall hat seine eigene Romanze, aber was der Kriminalbeamte von diesen Romanzen lernt, wirkt sich auch auf sein eigenes Leben aus.
June 8, 2015
Cherish the Land by Ariel Tachna
When Seth comes home to stay, Jason takes it as the boon it is. Until he realizes how deep Seth’s issues run and how Seth chooses to cope.
Seth Simms never wanted to be a cowboy, although to listen to his best friend, Jason Thompson, tell it, he isn’t one. He just happens to have lucked out in coming to live on Lang Downs with his brother ten years ago. He found enough stability to finish high school and go off to university, but he never really believed Lang Downs would be the same haven for him that it had become for so many others. He’s too messed up in the head. No one would accept someone with his issues.
All his life, Jason has had one goal: to come home to Lang Downs as resident veterinarian when they need his skills and jackaroo when they don’t. And it means he gets to spend time with Seth during his occasional visits, even though his dream of going from friends to lovers is hopeless since Seth is straight.
When Seth unexpectedly comes home to stay, Jason takes it as the boon it is. But juggling a relationship with another jackaroo and his friendship with Seth isn’t easy, and that’s before Jason realizes how deep Seth’s issues run and how dangerously Seth chooses to cope with them.
Length: Novel (220p.) | Genre: Western | Release Date: June 8, 2015
Running with the Wind by Shira Anthony
To save the merfolk of Ea, Taren must call upon the rune stone he commands. But Ian fears the stone’s power will cost Taren his life.
With the final confrontation between the island and mainland Ea factions looming, Taren and Ian sail with Odhrán to investigate a lost colony of merfolk in the Eastern Lands. Upon their arrival, the King of Astenya welcomes them as friends. Odhrán, however, isn’t so quick to trust the descendent of the man who held him prisoner for nearly a decade, especially now that he has someone to cherish and protect—the mysterious winged boy he rescued from the depths.
Armed with the knowledge he believes will save the Ea, Taren returns to the mainland. With Ian at his side, Taren convinces Vurin that their people must unite with their island brethren before it’s too late. When Seria and his men attack, Taren must call upon the ancient power of the rune stone to protect his comrades. But using the stone’s immeasurable power commands a hefty price—and Ian fears that price is Taren’s life.
Length: Novella (220p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters, High Fantasy
Release Date: June 8, 2015
March 20, 2015
Dance Off by Ariel Tachna & Nessa L. Warin
On the reality show Dance Off, rugby player Olivier Gautier and swimmer JC Webster must decide if their love can survive the real world.
On the reality show Dance Off, pro rugby player Olivier Gautier and Olympic swimmer JC Webster each have one goal in mind: to stay on the show as long as possible to earn his charity of choice maximum exposure and a larger donation. As the competition heats up, their goals expand to catching each other’s interest, but Olivier is firmly in the closet and plans to stay there. JC is willing to be discreet, but not to hide forever.
Starting a romance with another man is challenge enough for any celebrity, but doing it under the microscope of reality TV—and one majorly intolerant costar—is even harder. Add in meddling dance pros, JC’s overbearing family, and the need to play up chemistry with dance partners to win America’s hearts, and JC and Olivier’s time together is looking more and more like a recipe for disaster.
As the pressure to stay in the competition mounts, JC and Olivier must face their inevitable separation at the end of the show as well as decide whether a relationship as complicated as theirs can survive in the real world, outside the bubble of the set and practice studios.
Length: Novel (230p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: March 20, 2015
Final Encore by Scotty Cade
Aspiring country singer Billy falls for record executive Ian, but Ian is haunted by betrayal. Can Billy rescue Ian’s heart?
Sequel to Before the Final Encore
When hunky aspiring country singer Billy Eagan heads to Nashville in search of his big break, a relationship and love are the furthest things from his mind. Taking a foreman’s job at the Lazy H ranch and not knowing how he will be accepted, Billy decides to fly under the radar and stay as closeted as he can without denying who he really is. It’s immediately confirmed that he made the right decision when he discovers homophobia is still alive and well in Tennessee.
Then Billy gets his break and meets gorgeous record label executive Ian Dillon. Their worlds collide both professionally and personally, and Billy falls hard. But Ian is still haunted by the mysterious betrayal of his one and only lover, and knowing Billy possesses the power to emotionally destroy him, Ian decides to cut his losses and simply walk away. Determined not to give up on the man he loves, Billy secretly starts to unravel the past and quickly finds that it’s not what it appears. Can Billy rescue Ian’s heart, or will bigotry and hatred win over love?
1st Edition published by Dreamspinner Press, November 2010.
Length: Novel (210p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: March 20, 2015
Signs by Anna Martin
After becoming friends online, Luc and Caleb confront their fears about the opinions of the outside world to meet in New York.
After spending most of his life in special schools, Caleb Stone now faces public high school in his senior year, a prospect that both excites him and threatens to overwhelm his social anxiety. As a deaf teenager, he’s closed himself off to the world. He speaks a shorthand with his parents and even finds it hard to use American Sign Language with people in his local deaf community. But Caleb finds comfort in his love of photography. Everything he can’t express in real life, he posts on his Tumblr.
Struggling to reconcile his resentment for his father’s cruelty with the grief of losing a parent, Luc Le Bautillier scrolls through Tumblr searching for someone who might understand his goth look and effeminate nature. When Luc reblogs a photo by Caleb, sparking a conversation, they both find it easier to make friends online than in person.
Luc and Caleb confront their fears about the opinions of the outside world to meet in New York City. Despite Caleb’s increasing confidence, his parents worry he’s not ready for the trials ahead. But communication comes in many forms—when you learn the signs.
Length: Novel (200p.) | Genre: Contemporary, New Adult | Release Date: March 20, 2015
March 3, 2015
He stirred on the bed, not quite awake, not completely asleep, the sensation of warm air moving over his skin odd enough to rouse him from his sleep. Prying open sleep-glazed eyes, he blinked slowly, waiting for his vision to clear. It took longer now than it once had, though he refused to acknowledge that side of his age. He’d turned forty last month, and some days he felt it. Memories filtered through the haze of sleep as he stared at the expanse of white sand and blue water. Campoverde. Vacation. Private villa. He’d stretched out on the canopy bed on their terrace, enjoying the sight of Tom playing in the surf with their dog. He must have fallen asleep because the shadows had all but disappeared since morning. Sitting up, he looked around for his absent lover, wondering where Tom had disappeared to. A cold drink pressed against his sweaty back answered his question.
“Here, love,” Tom’s voice murmured in his ear. “Have something to drink. You wouldn’t want to get dehydrated.”
Jake took the glass and drained it in one long gulp, the crisp flavor of fresh orange juice incredibly refreshing against the heat of the afternoon. He glanced down toward the water and saw the beach was deserted. “It looks like everyone’s gone inside for their siestas,” he observed huskily. “I seem to have taken mine early.”
Tom’s grin widened. “Then we’ll just have to think of something else to do while it’s too hot to go out. Let’s go inside.”
“Why?” Jake asked. “We have a perfectly suitable bed right here and there’s no one to see. They’re all tucked away in their own beds.”
“Exhibitionist,” Tom teased automatically even as he stripped the T-shirt over his head, revealing skin darkened from their week here and muscles toned from the exercises that had become part of his routine as he recovered from his shoulder surgery. He’d expanded that workout over the years as his strength and flexibility increased, but he never missed a day. His body suffered too much when he did.
“You’re one to talk,” Jake retorted, reaching up to pull Tom down next to him, pressing their bare chests together. He ran callused fingers over the smooth skin of his lover’s side, firmly enough not to tickle, but still lightly. It was too hot to rush. Besides, they were on vacation. He wanted to linger over every inch of Tom’s body, to take his time and reaffirm the bonds that ran to the very depths of their beings. He fingered the charms that still hung around Tom’s neck, lingering on the newest addition, a half heart whose mate lay on a chain in the bedroom with Jake’s wallet and watch. He bent his head and kissed the muddled array of trinkets quickly before lifting the lanyard over Tom’s head, tenderly untangling it from the disheveled curls. He wanted nothing between their bodies, not even an expression of their love.
Tom smiled and nuzzled the strong hand, welcoming Jake’s attentions as always. Deciding his lover had the right idea, he reached for the shorts Jake wore and pushed them out of the way, leaving the blond deliciously naked. He hoped he looked half as good when he was forty. He ran his hand up one solid thigh toward the shaft that had jumped to attention the minute Tom joined Jake on the bed. “Glad to see me?” he teased, fingers dancing up and down the awakening cock.
Jake growled and rolled Tom beneath him. “Imp,” he scolded, grinding down against Tom’s groin.
Tom just laughed and pushed Jake off. “Uh-uh,” he scolded. “You lost the bet, which means I get to top the rest of the week if I want to, and I definitely want to.”
Jake sighed in mock resignation, his legs parting without conscious thought, just the idea of Tom inside him enough to make him achingly aware of the emptiness that nothing but his lover could fill. “Tell me you remembered to bring out supplies.”
“Of course I remembered,” Tom sniffed, “but I can think of more enjoyable ways to open you up for me.” He stripped his own shorts off, straddling Jake’s shoulders, carefully feeding his cock into his lover’s mouth. Jake swallowed him down immediately, drawing a deep groan from Tom’s chest as he bent to lick a long stripe down Jake’s erection on his way to his ultimate goal. Jake spread his legs wide, lifting his knees to give Tom better access to his ass. Grinning, Tom ran his tongue over hairy balls and farther down into the musky cleft of Jake’s ass, tasting sweat and desire.
The moan that escaped Jake’s chest vibrated around the head of Tom’s cock, convincing him to hurry his preparations. He curled his tongue and stabbed the tip into the clenching portal that guarded the deepest recesses of Jake’s body. It would open for him momentarily, no part of his lover off-limits to him, just as he would hold no part of himself back from Jake. His thumbs massaged the exterior muscle as his tongue worked its way inside, stretching the always tight sheath. It didn’t matter how many times they did this. Jake always hugged him snugly when they made love.
Jake bucked up against his mouth, driving him even deeper, making Tom smile. His lover was such a greedy slut of a bottom when he gave in and let Tom take him. Adding a long finger next to his tongue, he probed deeper, widening the channel so that their joining would bring only pleasure. He deliberately avoided Jake’s prostate, not wanting this to be over too soon.
He half expected Jake to finger-fuck him given their position, but his lover’s hands stayed above his waist, twiddling with his nipples, tugging occasionally on the hair under his arms. He added a second finger, Jake’s talented mouth making it difficult to take things as slowly as he’d planned. When his digits could slide easily in and out of the stretching hole, Tom pulled away, grabbed the lube, and squirted some on his cock quickly as he turned around. “Ready?” he asked, the head of his erection seeking entrance.
“Always ready for you, lover,” Jake replied instantly, tilting his hips eagerly.
Tom smiled and slid home, mating their bodies as they had mated their lives, two halves of one unbreakable whole. They groaned in unison, their lips meeting blindly, each tasting himself in the other’s mouth, the mingled flavors only adding to their desire.
Tom’s hips thrust of their own volition until Jake caught them, holding his lover still against him. “Slowly,” he urged. “Slow and deep until we come just from being together this way.”
Tom nodded and rocked against Jake slowly, never withdrawing, just stirring his erection inside his lover until the sense of connection was so strong Tom wondered why he couldn’t see the ties binding them together. The emotion, the desire built and built and built until neither of them could hold back any longer, their release spooling out of them in long, slow waves.
They lay together panting, foreheads pressed together as their heartbeats settled. Jake lifted one arm over his head to find Tom’s, twining their fingers together, eyes drifting shut again as satiation sapped what little energy the heat had not already stolen. Smiling, Tom dropped the mosquito netting on the bed to provide them with a modicum of privacy should anyone pass by before they awoke. Then he stretched out next to his lover and joined him in dreams.
Ariel Tachna lives outside of Houston with her husband, her daughter and son, and their two dogs. Before moving there, she traveled all over the world, having fallen in love with both France, where she found her husband, and India, where she dreams of retiring some day. She’s bilingual with snippets of four other languages to her credit, and is as in love with languages as she is with writing.
December 2, 2014
Dreamspinner Press’ 2014 Advent Calendar: Celebrate
Buone Feste, Felices Fiestas, Frohe Feiertage, Joyeuses Fêtes, Happy Holidays! The end-of-the-year holidays bring celebrations of all kinds, and romance is at an all-time high. Take a trip around the world and enjoy these stories of life, love, and happiness. Your Christmas present to yourself!
Holiday reading fun! Celebrate! is a package of 31 stories that bought individually would sell for a total of $79.69. Beginning December 1, stories will be available individually as priced or as a bulk package for $59.99.
Genre: Holiday, Contemporary, Humor, High Fantasy, Historical European, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters, New Adult, Mystery/Suspense, Science Fiction, Ghosts/Spirits, M/M/M
Release Date: December 1, 2014 | Buy as a set ($59.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-767-5)
Best Laid Plans by John Amory
All neurotic George wants is to be with his partner for Christmas, but he’s not sure he’ll survive London.
George is an anxious, neurotic mess. The only thing that calms him is his partner of ten years, Scott. So despite how nervous it makes George to travel alone, he decides to go to Europe, where Scott has been working for two months, to visit for Christmas. George plans a day on his own in London before traveling to Paris, where Scott is staying. But on George’s day of sightseeing and shopping, everything goes wrong, from a misunderstanding with the hotel concierge to getting lost in Harrods. All George wants is to be with his partner for Christmas, but he’s not sure he’ll survive long enough for that to happen.
Length: Day Dream (21p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Humor | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-744-6)
Business or Pleasure by Michael Cross and Emma Michaels
After a night locked up with his boss, Ian realizes his resentment toward Alex might be something very different.
When American Ian lands a secretarial job in the United Kingdom, he thinks he’s set for life. Admittedly, he’s still a bachelor living in a small apartment and working for a complete jackass, but other than that, his life is everything he ever hoped for in an enticing city full of beautiful people. When Alistair Security is robbed during the Christmas Fundraiser, the last thing Ian expects is to end up locked in with his boss, Alex Alistair, and to realize he might have mistaken his resentment for something else. The two men find common ground throughout the night, but when morning comes and the news hits the headlines, their connection will be tested. Ian might find himself at the start of a hot office romance—or he’ll spend the holidays browsing the classifieds.
Length: Day Dream (36p.) | Genre: Mystery/Suspense | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-752-1)
Coming of Age by Venona Keyes
It will take all of Daniel’s charm and the prayers offered at the shrine to make Aero take a chance on the romance they both want.
Akiyoshi ‘Aero’ Kurokuma, author of the wildly popular manga, Ecos, lost his assistant when his best friend retired. After Aero collapses from exhaustion four years later, he is forced to run a contest for an assistant. Placing impossible rules on the contest, Aero is sure no one can win. But a winner emerges: a young man from America, Daniel Beck. The first time he lays eyes on Daniel, Aero realizes he’ll have a hard time hiding his attraction. Daniel is a perfect assistant, but it doesn’t help Aero see past the twenty-year age difference between them. It will take all of Daniel’s charm and the prayers offered at the shrine to make Aero take a chance on the romance they both want.
Length: Day Dream (32p.) | Genre: Contemporary, New Adult | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-763-7)
The Eve That Finally Happened by Diane Lennox
Christmas Eve ghosts show Jae-ho Kim what will become of him if he doesn’t take a chance on a holiday date.
After seven years in Canada, Korean native Jae-ho Kim still hasn’t had the special Christmas Eve date night that he would have enjoyed back home—a fact that has his sister, Soon-kyu, very upset during their yearly phone conversation. This year, Jae’s lack of effort concerning his love life comes back to haunt him in the form of Christmas Eve ghosts, showing him very vividly what will become of him if he refuses to take a chance and find a date for Christmas Eve.
Length: Day Dream (33p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Ghosts/Spirits | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-758-3)
Home for Chirappu by Ariel Tachna
Trent worries Nik’s big, close-knit Indian family won’t accept an American—much less a man—as Nik’s partner.
Nikhilesh (Nik) Sharma hasn’t been home to Alappuzha, India, since he came out to his family ten years ago. Now that his relationship with them is less strained, he’s bringing his boyfriend Trent along to celebrate the winter holidays. As excited as he is to see everyone again, he worries the foreign culture, religious differences, and disapproval might shock Trent. At the same time, Trent worries Nik’s big, close-knit family won’t accept an American—much less a man—as Nik’s partner and that his presence will impede the otherwise happy reunion. Whether the trip leads to misunderstandings that will drive them apart or to a new understanding that will draw them closer than ever, it’s sure to be an experience they’ll never forget.
Length: Novella (53p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-737-8)
Hummingbird House by Kenzie Cade
Trent returns to his family’s ancestral home, where he experienced his first kiss and first heartbreak.
To honor his grandmother’s final request, Trenton Appleton drops everything to visit the family’s ancestral home: Hummingbird House, where he experienced his first kiss and first heartbreak with Callum Eason.
Eight years ago, confused by his attraction to Trent, Callum reacted badly. But with help he never expected, Callum found himself and learned to accept who he was.
Now Trent is back at Hummingbird House, and Callum has his opportunity to salvage their friendship, at least. But Trent is less receptive than he was all those years ago. Still, Callum is determined to show Trent he has changed and keep his promise to Trent’s grandmother. When past mistakes repeat themselves, Callum must break the cycle before his last chance with Trent passes him by.
Length: Novella (57p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-743-9)
Ilya and the Wolf by Rory Ni Coileain
Accepting shapeshifter Volyk’s Christmas offer will change Ilya’s life forever.
Ilya, the youngest son of a Moscow oligarch, is so deep in the closet he’d find Narnia if that weren’t a decadent Western story. On Christmas Eve, his brothers lure him into the forest, intending to murder him and erase the shame he inflicts on their family by existing. However, the attempt is interrupted by Volyk, a wolf who carries the blood of the ancient oboroten’ —shapeshifters. Ilya never imagined a Christmas gift like the handsome wolf, but accepting what Volyk offers will have consequences that change both of their lives forever.
Length: Day Dream (25p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shifters
Release Date: December 1, 2014 | Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-736-1)
The Journey Back by Kristen Slater
Idris always put his career first, but now he wants to get home and reconcile with Dan—if there’s anything to return to.
Having quit his job, Idris is trying to make it home to his partner of twelve years, Dan, in time for Christmas. Stuck on a train during a snowstorm, Idris has nothing to do but think back on how much he has missed by putting his career first. His job has been straining their partnership for years, and now Idris worries he’s damaged it beyond repair. He desperately wants to get back to the UK and salvage their relationship—if there’s even anything waiting for him when he gets home.
Length: Day Dream (35p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-756-9)
King of Me by R. A. Kaitland
Cast out of his clan of shifters, Anton Cedwell wants nothing more than to be accepted by his partner Sean’s family.
Cast out of his clan of shifters and with no family of his own, Anton Cedwell wants nothing more than to be accepted by his partner Sean’s family when the two of them visit over Christmas. But Sean’s powerful father, Flavius, isn’t happy his son chose a shifter as a mate, and Sean is hiding secrets from Anton. When Sean is attacked by rival weres, Anton hopes Sean’s family will finally see the depth of his commitment and how far he’s willing to go to protect the man he loves.
Length: Day Dream (33p.) | Genre: Other Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters
Release Date: December 1, 2014 | Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-741-5)
Krampusz by Lou Harper
In Budapest, Brian might find himself in the arms of Krampusz, who punishes bad boys.
Freshly out of college, shy and introverted Brian Preston travels from LA to Budapest to teach English, ready to embrace life and spread his wings. It’s early December, and the air is heavy with the scent of roasting chestnuts. Getting involved with his new roommate, native Hungarian Zoli Park, promises to be the adventure Brian always wanted. But all is not as it seems, and Brian might find himself in the arms of Krampusz, demonic companion to St. Nick, who punishes bad boys.
Length: Day Dream (31p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-739-2)
Last of Summer by Genna Donaghy
Rowan and Martin must learn to trust one another if they hope to deliver a phoenix home in time.
Although Rowan Stormbringer was raised Wiccan, he’s never felt a connection to magic. That changes on the eve of Yule, when he encounters a magical creature, a phoenix, that needs his help getting to Stonehenge before the sun sets that day. Hiding a magical creature in the mortal world is tricky at best, but partnering with a good-looking, snarky taxi driver may be just the ticket Rowan needs. As they explore their instant attraction to each other, Rowan and Martin must learn to trust one another if they hope to deliver the phoenix home in time.
Length: Day Dream (23p.) | Genre: Urban Fantasy | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-755-2)
The Light of Winter by Jana Denardo
Gareth plans to take his partner Warun to Bryn Celli Ddu for the Druid ritual of Alban Arthan.
Dr. Gareth Evans and his medical doctor partner, Warun Jones, are having trouble making time for each other between end of term craziness for Gareth and holiday-related injuries pouring into the hospital for Warun. Gareth has planned what he hopes will be the perfect recipe for relieving the tension and bringing them back together. While Warun wants Gareth to partake in Plygain, a traditional dawn service of hymn singing for Christmas, Gareth plans to take Warun to Bryn Celli Ddu and introduce him to the Druid ritual of Alban Arthan, the celebration of the winter solstice.
Length: Day Dream (25p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-738-5)
Love Light by Jane Darius
Nick and Ben trade holiday horror stories at a resort on Lake Malawi and realize they’re lucky to have each other.
Nick, a bartender, and Ben, a hotel reviewer, have been together two years. Though he hates the paperwork involved, Nick agrees to accompany Ben to a beautiful lodge on the Mozambican side of Lake Malawi. Over a bottle of wine, they trade Christmas horror stories from their pasts. But memories of hurt and loss only serve to remind them how lucky they are to have found each other. It might be time to try out the showerhead built into the tree outside….
Length: Day Dream (21p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-749-1)
The Magic of Weihnachten by Bru Baker
American Walsh and German Dierck must hide from the traditional trappings to discover the magic of the season.
American Walsh Brandt is happy when a promotion lands him his dream job and a quiet new life in Germany. Until December rolls around, when he realizes it’s almost impossible to hide from the holiday season in Germany.
Dierck Reiniger is fascinated by Walsh’s hatred of Christmas and makes it his personal mission to help Walsh enjoy Weihnachten and the German traditions he grew up with. Walsh has a great time getting to know Dierck—but he still isn’t sold on Christmas, despite Dierck’s efforts. Dierck’s on the rebound, and he’s determined to develop their physical relationship slowly, much to Walsh’s frustration. It isn’t until they’re alone in a secluded cabin—hiding from the traditional trappings—that Walsh finally recognizes what the magic of the season can bring when spent with someone special.
Length: Novella (51p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-746-0)
Minstrel’s Solstice by Nicole Dennis
Minstrel Kerryll and Duke Cullan live at opposite ends of society, but they’re both looking for a place to belong.
A wasting plague swept over the Four Quadrants, changing how folks view the traveling guilds. Most travelers now make permanent contracts and settle in villages instead of continuing on the road. Needing to alter his lifestyle, Kerryll MacGhylle rides deep into the Northern Quadrant in search of a place to belong.
The Northern Duke, Cullan Gryffyn D’Antuono, accepts the contract of the frozen minstrel arriving during a powerful ice blizzard. He nurses Kerryll through the ravages of the sickness. Though they live at opposite ends of society, they have more in common than they realize.
Length: Day Dream (29p.) | Genre: Historical European, High Fantasy
Release Date: December 1, 2014 | Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-745-3)
My You by Tamer Lorika
Adrian’s life in Mongolia is very different from Texas, from the holiday celebrations to… dating.
Adrian Delgado’s time in the Peace Corps has been rewarding, but with Christmas around the corner, he is starting to get homesick. Life in Mongolia is very different from Texas, from the holiday celebrations to… dating. Take his coworker Batbayar, for instance—they’ve slept together several times and spend most time outside of work in each other’s houses. But are they “together,” or friends with benefits? Maybe a Mongolian Christmas and a sheep’s head in the bathtub can lead to the answer.
Length: Day Dream (17p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-742-2)
Neighbors by Emma Wilson
With some help from friends, Eric and Rhys might finally move beyond watching each other through their windows.
Ever since he moved to London, shy editor Eric has been watching his neighbor, Crooked Smile, jog every morning. Aspiring restaranteur Rhys eats breakfast by the window so he can see his neighbor, Bed Head, help the old woman downstairs clean off her car. When Eric’s roommate unexpectedly returns home for the holidays, she realizes their idiocy and, with the help of Rhys’s business partner, Andreas, tries to help both men see there might be more in their futures than they’re seeing through their windows.
Length: Day Dream (39p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Humor | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-747-7)
A Night Never Forgotten by SJD Peterson
An infection leaves Braylon unable to make his annual trip to Toronto, but a stranger’s gift might be the miracle he needs.
After a one night whirlwind romance, Braylon returns to Toronto on the first of December every year in the hopes of seeing the man of his dreams again. Instead Braylon meets a strange man who tells him Christmas is a magical time, and one never knows what unexpected gifts he’ll receive. Braylon takes a chance and makes a Christmas wish, but instead of getting what he wants, he contracts an infection, leaving him dependent on dialysis and unable to make the journey the following year. But the stranger just might be right; an unexpected gift may be the miracle Braylon needs most of all.
Length: Day Dream (29p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-757-6)
Quite A Spectacle by Meg Harding
Michael is terrified to spend Christmas with Max’s family in London for the first time in a decade.
Max moved away from his family to be with Michael, and his family never got over it. Now, for the first time in almost a decade, he’s going to return to London for the Christmas celebrations. He’s confident his family will welcome Michael with open, loving arms. At least that’s what he tells himself.
Michael doesn’t have his head buried in the sand. He knows he has a lot to prove this Christmas, and he’s not sure if he’s up to the task. All these years and he’d never considered having to spend a holiday with Max’s family. Now that it’s happening he’s not scared to admit it—he’s terrified.
Length: Novella (56p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Humor | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-748-4)
Saint Martin’s Day by Kim Fielding
Toby follows Neno to Zagreb, Croatia, hoping Saint Martin’s Day will bring the change their relationship needs.
Five years ago, Neno Kovač fled California, graduate school, and his lover, Toby Cowan, to return to his native Croatia. Since then, he’s led a quiet life as a librarian—until one November afternoon when Toby, who has never stopped loving Neno, shows up in Zagreb. When he left the United States, Neno wasn’t ready to give up his home and family to take a chance on a long-distance relationship. But Saint Martin’s Day has arrived, the day pressed grapes turn to wine and autumn turns to winter. Perhaps it will be a day when other changes are possible as well.
Length: Day Dream (31p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-735-4)
Second Bite of the Cherry by Louise Lyons
The New Year is a time for new beginnings, and for Daniel and James, it might be the time to give love another chance.
When Daniel Berrisford reluctantly agrees to accompany his best friend Kate to the New Year’s Eve celebrations in London, he doesn’t expect to enjoy himself. Daniel is pleasantly surprised to see his first boyfriend, James Allison, among the merrymakers. The pair haven’t seen each other for four years, but as they talk and midnight approaches, it becomes clear the spark between them is still there. The New Year is a time for new beginnings, and for Daniel and James, it might be the time to give love another chance.
Length: Day Dream (28p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-765-1)
Snow and Moose and Finnish Secrets by Reni Kieffer
A neglected secret threatens to ruin Jake and Ian’s magical Christmas in the Finnish woods.
When Jake takes his boyfriend Ian home to celebrate Christmas with his parents in the Finnish woods, Ian, a skeptic by nature who has to deny his preference for guys in front of his own family, is not only worried about the reaction of Jake’s family, but also about the feast itself—and the cold. However, within minutes, Jake’s parents make Ian feel warm, welcome, and at home, and begin to introduce him to their Christmas traditions.
The visit goes smoothly until Jake’s ex-girlfriend barges in and drops a bomb that shatters their peace and harmony—a tiny detail Jake failed to mention to his boyfriend. Angry and hurt, Ian struggles to let go of the past and focus on the blessings surrounding him.
Length: Day Dream (25p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-753-8)
A Snowman Made of Sand by J.J. Carroll
Giving Tris the perfect beach Christmas with the Ethan’s imperfect family is going to take a holiday miracle.
Last year in England, Australian Ethan Harvey not only met his “perfect” man in Tristan Lewin-Jones, Ethan shared a wonderful Christmas with Tristan’s “perfect” family—an ideal British holiday full of genteel good cheer and all the traditional trimmings.
Now Tris and Ethan are living in Sydney, and Tris wants the quintessential Australian beach Christmas, with sun, sand, surf, seafood… and the Harveys. But Ethan didn’t mention the Harveys are politically incorrect, rude, crude, and loud. He worries his family will drive Tris away. Giving Tris the perfect beach Christmas with the imperfect Harveys is going to take a holiday miracle.
Length: Day Dream (37p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Humor | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-762-0)
Stardust by Andrew Grey
With Georg’s life in Germany and Duncan’s in Boston, the chance for more than a holiday fling is as elusive as stardust.
Duncan is an ocean from home over the holidays and expects to spend them alone. To his pleasant surprise, one of his European co-workers, Georg, befriends him and includes Duncan in the holiday traditions of his homeland: cutting a Christmas tree under starry skies at Georg’s country estate, decorating it at the family’s city home, and shopping at the Christmas market in Munich. Both men are lonely and realize they have much in common. But Georg’s life is in Germany and Duncan’s is in Boston. With the project they’re working on nearing completion, any chance for more than a holiday fling seems as elusive as stardust.
Length: Novella (62p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-764-4)
The Swag Man Delivers by Sean Michael
When Orpheus runs into Gage on an Australian beach, he figures Santa knew exactly what he was doing.
Orpheus “O” Drummond, a recent Ph.D. graduate, is visiting Australia after defending his thesis, and being dumped by his boyfriend. While alone on the beach in Australia was not how he’d originally planned on spending his Christmas, when O runs into Gage, he figures Santa knew exactly what he was doing.
Gage is traveling away from his Texan home, trying to “find himself.” When he finds O instead, he doesn’t think things could have worked out better. Together Gage and O celebrate Christmas in the best way they can think of.
Length: Day Dream (31p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-751-4)
Three Wise Men by Connie Bailey
Joon, Tae, and Sangsun belong together, but a relationship will mean defying tradition and coming out of the closet.
College friends Joon, Tae, and Sangsun parted ways after an aborted attempt at a threesome. Ten years later, life has carried them down very different paths, but Joon misses his friends and decides to invite them to his home in South Korea for Christmas. He believes they belong together, but convincing the others to defy tradition and try again will take faith, hope, and a lot of talking—especially since all three of them are still in the closet.
Length: Day Dream (29p.) | Genre: Contemporary, M/M/M | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-759-0)
Tidings of Comfort and Joey Down Under by David Connor
It’ll take a miracle to set things right between Seth and Sandy. Good thing ’tis the season.
Seth Anderson thought he was a finalist in the Hot Jack cologne modeling contest for King’s Department Store, but Sandy King, upon reviewing Seth’s photo and resume, just wanted to jump him like a horny kangaroo. Seth quickly learns there is pain behind Sandy’s bravado and a sweet, lonely man behind the act. A holiday romance blossoms like the flowers on an Australian Christmas Bell. When Seth, used to a family dynamic without boundaries, oversteps by outing Sandy to his estranged grandmother, however, everything changes. Sandy is furious. He breaks things off with Seth and threatens to return to the US. As Christmas approaches, any chance at happily ever after seems as likely as a snowstorm in Sydney. It would take a miracle from above to set things right. Good thing ‘tis the season.
Length: Novella (67p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Humor | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-750-7)
Under a New Star by Leo d’Entremont
Old holiday traditions lead to crossed signals when scientist Michael and Aerial Morph Adrian discuss their relationship.
In the 26th Century, mankind has breached the light speed barrier and begun to colonize other planets. They’ve also learned to Design human beings, known as Morphs, for specialized colony missions. Adrian is an Aerial Morph, on his way to colonize the low-gravity planet Eridani VI with his scientist Partner, Michael. In violation of the rules of the Morph Projects, they’ve been lovers for months. Michael cares more about his work than anything, while Adrian doesn’t take anything seriously except Michael. Before they arrive at their new home, they need to curtail their relationship before it destroys their professional Partnership.
The colony ship is scheduled to arrive at their destination on Christmas Eve. Some old holiday traditions persist, but when Adrian and Michael have differing ideas about what’s best for their relationship and their careers, holiday gifts and ideas for new beginnings lead to crossed signals.
Length: Novella (76p.) | Genre: Science Fiction | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-754-5)
The Virgin Miracle by Rob Rosen
Two strangers on a plane, one heading to Paris, the other Barcelona, with only a connection in London in common—at first.
Two strangers on a plane, one heading to Paris, the other Barcelona, both trying to get to their families in time for the holidays. It’s Christmas Eve, and all they have in common is a connection through London. When flights get delayed and cancelled, that connection goes beyond an airport, a terminal, and a secluded meeting room. And for Lance and Bruce, Christmas morning will hold even more joyous miracles.
Length: Day Dream (22p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-740-8)
Wait for Me by T.S. Morgan
When TJ returns his grandfather’s ashes to Scotland, a love story from the past might ignite one in the present.
To fulfill his grandfather’s final request, TJ Barclay travels to Scotland over Christmas to bury his ashes next to his lost love, so they can be together at last. While there, he meets Jamie, the orphaned grandson of the man his grandfather loved sixty years ago, before circumstances tore them apart. Concerned for Jamie, TJ can’t leave Scotland without knowing he’s all right. Neither man expected a love story from the past to ignite a new one in the present.
Length: Day Dream (21p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($1.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-761-3)
What Father Christmas Left by Felicitas Ivey
Jacob and Errol’s traditional holiday party is interrupted by the arrival of Jacob’s runaway younger sister.
Ex-Pat American Jacob Moore is looking forward to hosting his traditional Christmas Eve party with his partner, Errol. They love the quiet night of friends and food at their house in London, and the break before dealing with family, presents, and Boxing Day. The quiet is shattered when Jacob’s younger half sister, Pru, shows up on his doorstep, running away from home for a very good reason. Jacob has stayed in touch with her over the years, even though he’s estranged from their father. But nothing prepared him for this.
Now he has to decide what to do with this unexpected package from Father Christmas.
Length: Novella (45p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 1, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-760-6)
June 4, 2014
Country Strong by Caitlin Ricci
When Wyatt returns to the stable after an accident, he learns General has been sold to Kellen for retraining. Wyatt’s woes have just begun.
With only three months left on a lease-to-own agreement on a quarter horse Wyatt’s worked hard to own, a thunderstorm spooks General and he throws Wyatt, changing both their lives forever. Luckily, Kellen, a friend of the stable owner, calls for emergency medical attention, and Wyatt comes out of the hospital with a broken wrist and a concussion.
When Wyatt returns to the stable, he finds the owner has sold General to Kellen for retraining. But Wyatt’s woes have just begun, and now he must drive an hour to see his horse. The perks help balance the hardships, however, and Wyatt finds himself falling for Kellen. His fortitude is soon tested again by the ultimate betrayal when he learns Kellen doesn’t intend to return General after he’s trained.
Length: Novella (112p.) | Genre: Western, Erotic Romance | Release Date: June 4, 2014
Buy as eBook ($4.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-928-2)
Fire Inside by Dawn Douglas
When Eric realizes that something is burning Tyler up from the inside out, he’s determined to find a way to help him.
After ten years as an active duty Marine, Captain Eric Ramos is rejoining civilian life. His first job is chauffeuring, assisting, and generally keeping track of NBA young gun Tyler Haley. Tyler’s had a rough few months, and his team owner is convinced he needs some hand-holding if he’s going to keep delivering wins for the St. Louis Fire Foxes.
Instead of the arrogant, over-privileged athlete Eric expected, Tyler is a big, blond, lonely twenty-three-year-old who needs more than just an employee to keep him in line. While taking care of Tyler, Eric changes from employee to friend, to something more. And when Eric realizes that something is burning the kid up from the inside out, he’s determined to find a way to help him before Tyler’s carefully constructed façade turns to ash.
Length: Novella (114p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: June 4, 2014
Buy as eBook ($4.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-733-2)
Testament to Love by Ariel Tachna
Another mission to rescue yet another lost soul. Something about trouble painter Cameron grabs Emmanuel and won’t let him go.
Another mission to rescue yet another lost soul—Emmanuel isn’t sure how much more of the same old routine he can withstand. Get the fallen’s attention, save them from themselves, usher them back to grace, and return, simply to receive another assignment. But there’s something different about the troubled painter, Cameron Anderson, that grabs Emmanuel and won’t let him go.
Falling in love was never the plan. Committing the unpardonable sin is not an option for Emmanuel. He must choose: return home to stay and hope Cameron survives alone, or face the consequences of what he’s done in the hope of securing a life with Cameron.
1st edition published as a short story of the same title in October 2007 by Dreamspinner Press.
Length: Novella (80p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Angels and Demons | Release Date: June 4, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-724-0)
Taught to Love by T.J. Masters
Wanting to see his father happy again, Sam leads Rob and Ken to explore a seduction that might become true romance.
In an effort to help a boy who lost his mother, schoolteacher Rob Cooper offers to tutor him. He doesn’t expect to fall for Sam’s father, Ken Reid. Ken’s grief has led him to bury his needs and emotions in work, but he can’t deny the new feelings Rob awakens. Wanting to see his father happy again, Sam encourages a relationship, leading Rob and Ken to explore a seduction that might become true romance.
Length: Nap-sized Dream (54p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: June 4, 2014
Buy as eBook ($2.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-769-1)
The Byte of Betrayal by Ashavan Doyon
When an online friend is revealed as a fake Caleb loses all sense of trust. Nicodemus hopes to reclaim what he lost when shows up in person.
Caleb McDonnell lives his life online. A thirty-year-old fast food worker, he spends his time talking in an Internet world where his job and living conditions can’t dictate his friendships. He’s found acceptance, friendship, and even romance. But when an online friend is revealed as a fake, Caleb loses all sense of trust. To stave off the emotional collapse of his betrayal, Caleb leaves his online life behind and retreats into the monotony of his job.
Nicodemus Rokos feels like his heart has been torn out. He knew Caleb would be hurt, but he’d hoped not to be shut out of his boyfriend’s life. He can only hope Caleb still feels something when he shows up in person to reclaim what he’s lost.
Length: Novella (73p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: June 4, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-076-8)
February 28, 2014
My Roommate’s a Jock? Well, Crap! by Wade Kelly
It’s easy to become cynical when life never goes your way.
Cole Reid has been a social recluse since he was fifteen, when he was outed by his high school baseball team. Since then, his obsessive-compulsive behavior and sarcastic nature have driven away most of the population, and everyone else hates him because he’s gay. As he sees it, he’s bound to repulse any prospective friends, let alone boyfriends, so why bother?
By the time Cole enters college, he’s become an anal-retentive loner—but it’s not a problem until his roommate graduates and the housing department assigns Ellis Montgomery to move in with Cole. Ellis is messy, gorgeous, straight, and worst of all, a jock!
During a school year filled with frat buddies, camping expeditions, and meddling parents, Cole and Ellis develop a friendship that turns Cole’s glass-half-empty outlook on its head. There must be more to Ellis than a fun-loving jock—and maybe Cole’s reawakening libido has rekindled his hope for more than camaraderie.
Length: Novel (9 hours and 21 minutes) | Genre: Contemporary, Humor, Coming of Age
Release Date: January 16, 2014
Narrator: Jason Lovett | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
Love, Like Water by Rowan Speedwell
Three years undercover with one of the worst gangs in the country left FBI agent Joshua Chastain shattered. Battling nightmares and addiction, he leaves the concrete jungle for New Mexico horse country, hoping to start over on his uncle’s ranch.
Foreman Eli Kelly spends his life rehabilitating abused animals, and Joshua is just another lost soul. But as Joshua slowly begins to put his life back together, Eli realizes that Joshua is a lot more than his newest project.
Joshua’s plan seems to work—maybe a fresh start was just what he needed. Then, just when he has finally found a sense of peace, crime and hatred nearly destroy all his hard work, forcing him to reevaluate what he wants out his relationship with Eli and his own life.
Length: Novel (9 hours and 48 minutes) | Genre: Western | Release Date: January 21, 2014
Narrator: K. C. Kelly | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
Whiskey and Wry by Rhys Ford
He was dead. And it was murder most foul. If erasing a man’s existence could even be called murder.
When Damien Mitchell wakes, he finds himself without a life or a name. The Montana asylum’s doctors tell him he’s delusional and his memories are all lies: he’s really Stephen Thompson, and he’d gone over the edge, obsessing about a rock star who died in a fiery crash. His chance to escape back to his own life comes when his prison burns, but a gunman is waiting for him, determined that neither Stephen Thompson nor Damien Mitchell will escape.
With the assassin on his tail, Damien flees to the City by the Bay, but keeping a low profile is the only way he’ll survive as he searches San Francisco for his best friend, Miki St. John. Falling back on what kept him fed before he made it big, Damien sings for his supper outside Finnegan’s, an Irish pub on the pier, and he soon falls in with the owner, Sionn Murphy. Damien doesn’t need a complication like Sionn, and to make matters worse, the gunman—who doesn’t mind going through Sionn or anyone else if that’s what it takes kill Damien—shows up to finish what he started.
Length: Novel (8 hours and 41 minutes) | Genre: Mystery/Suspense | Release Date: January 21, 2014
Narrator: Tristan James | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
Inherit the Sky by Ariel Tachna
Caine Neiheisel is stuck in a dead-end job at the end of a dead-end relationship when the chance of a lifetime falls in his lap. His mother inherits her uncle’s sheep station in New South Wales, Australia, and Caine sees it as the opportunity to start over, out on the range where his stutter won’t hold him back and his willingness to work will surely make up for his lack of knowledge.
Unfortunately, Macklin Armstrong, the foreman of Lang Downs who should be Caine’s biggest ally, alternates between being cool and downright dismissive, and the other hands are more amused by Caine’s American accent than they are moved by his plight… until they find out he’s gay and their amusement turns to scorn. It will take all of Caine’s determination—and an act of cruel sabotage by a hostile neighbor—to bring the men of Lang Downs together and give Caine and Macklin a chance at love.
Length: Novel (6 hours and 53 minutes) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: January 31, 2014
Narrator: William James | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
Greenwode by J Tullos Hennig
The Hooded One. The one to breathe the dark and light and dusk between….
When an old druid foresees this harbinger of chaos, he also sees whom it will claim: young Rob of Loxley. Rob’s mother and father, a yeoman forester and a wisewoman, have raised Rob and his sister, Marion, under a solemn duty: to take their parents’ places in the Old Religion as the manifestations of the Horned Lord and the Lady Huntress.
But when Gamelyn Boundys, son of a powerful nobleman, is injured in the forest, he and Rob begin a friendship that challenges both duty and ideology: Gamelyn is a devout follower of the Catholic Church. Rob understands the divide between peasant and noble all too well. And the old druid has foreseen that Gamelyn is destined to be Rob’s sworn enemy—to fight in a blood sacrifice for the greenwode’s Maiden.
In a risky bid for happiness, Rob dares the Horned Lord to reinterpret the ancient rites—to allow Rob to take Gamelyn as a lover instead of a rival. But in the eyes of Gamelyn’s church, lust is a sin—and sodomy is unthinkable.
Length: Novel (17 hours and 21 minutes) | Genre: Historical European, High Fantasy
Release Date: February 2, 2014
Narrator: Ross Pendleton | Buy as Audio Book ($24.95)
Body Magic by Poppy Dennison
A pack is only as strong as its weakest member. Rocky Harris knows how the system works. He’s been on the bottom rung his whole life. But when his alpha consigns him to the High Moon Pack to help them improve security, he finds his beliefs not just challenged but outright assaulted.
Cade Montgomery’s confidence took a hit when the pack’s cubs were kidnapped on his watch. He’s prepared to do anything to protect his family, even if it means working with Rocky. Maybe Cade doesn’t trust Rocky, but with the turmoil surrounding pack Alpha Gray’s unpopular decision to break tradition and mate with a mage named Simon, Cade knows more threats are coming.
Then someone declares war on shifters and puts the entire pack in danger. Cade and Rocky will need each other’s strengths to survive the impending battle—and the power of their growing attraction.
Length: Novel (6 hours and 29 minutes) | Genre: Erotic Romance, Paranormal, High Fantasy, Werewolves/Shapeshifters | Release Date: February 6, 2014
Narrator: Robert G. Davis | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
The Isle of… Where? by Sue Brown
When Liam Marshall’s best friend, Alex, loses his fight with colon cancer, he leaves Liam one final request: buy a ticket to Ryde, on the Isle of Wight, and scatter Alex’s ashes off the pier. Liam is tired, worn out, and in desperate need of a vacation, but instead of sun, sea, sand, and hot cabana boys, he gets a rickety old train, revolting kids, and no Ewan MacGregor.
Liam would have done anything for his friend, but fulfilling Alex’s final wish means letting go of the only family Liam had left. Lost, he freezes on the pier… until Sam Owens comes to his rescue.
Sam’s family has vacationed on the Isle of Wight every year for as long as he can remember, but he’s never met anyone like Liam. Determined to make Liam’s vacation one to remember, Sam looks after him—in and out of the bedroom. He even introduces Liam to his entire family. But as Sam helps Liam let go, he’s forced to admit that he wants Liam to hang on—not to his old life, but to Sam and what they have together.
Length: Novel (7 hours and 34 minutes) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 7, 2014
Narrator: Max Lehnen | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
Plan B by SJD Peterson
Danny Marshal has always lived his life out loud, but his androgynous appearance is only a small part of who he is. One night at a frat party, Danny meets Lance Lenard, football jock and apparent straight guy. Lance is shocked when he’s immediately attracted to Danny’s feminine side. Danny is happy to be the subject of Lance’s first man-on-man experiment—until Lance begins to struggle with the fact that despite his appearance, Danny is indeed a man.
Lance’s whole life has been focused on his goal of playing in the NFL, and he knows those dreams will be smashed if anyone finds out about his little secret. Although Lance has grown to crave Danny’s touch, he’s not willing to give Danny what he’s grown to crave: a boyfriend who’s proud to love him for every flamboyant and snarky cell in his body.
Life sends Danny and Lance in different directions, each of them focused on his respective Plan A. But the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.
Length: Novel (8 hours and 8 minutes) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 7, 2014
Narrator: Andrew McFerrin | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
A Boy and His Dragon by R. Cooper
Arthur MacArthur needs a job, and not just for the money. Before he dropped out of school to support his younger sister, he loved being a research assistant at the university. But working for a dragon, one of the rarest and least understood magical beings, has unforeseen complications. While Arthur may be the only applicant who isn’t afraid of Philbert Jones in his dragon form, the instant attraction he feels for his new employer is beyond disconcerting.
Bertie is a brilliant historian, but he can’t find his own notes without help—his house is a hoard of books and antiques, hence the need for an assistant. Setting the mess to rights is a dream come true for Arthur, who once aspired to be an archivist. But making sense of Bertie’s interest in him is another matter. After all, dragons collect treasure, and Arthur is anything but extraordinary.
Length: Novel (10 hours and 1 minutes) | Genre: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters
Release Date: February 11, 2014
Narrator: Guy Veryzer | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
An Unconventional Courtship by Scotty Cade
Tristan Moreau loves his job as chief administrative officer and personal assistant to Webber Kincaid, President, Chairman, and CEO of Kincaid International. It would be the perfect job… if only he hadn’t fallen in love with his boss as well as the work. After two years, he’s still doing everything in his power to keep his feelings hidden—mostly because he wants to protect the reputation of his famous boss but also because he wants to keep his job.
Webber Kincaid has stayed in the closet, using his best friend and confidante as his beard. Everything in his life was working out just fine until he met Tristan Moreau. Within months, Tristan stole his heart and became his lifeline. But Webber knows the rules of the workplace better than anyone, so he’s kept his distance.
But two years is too long to wonder “what if?”—especially when business takes them to a private Caribbean island. When Tristan and Webber succumb to the tropical heat, their professionalism starts to backslide. It’s a seemingly impossible relationship, making a go at it under the paparazzi’s microscope. It may be the best—or the worst—business decision they ever made.
Length: Novel (7 hours and 21 minutes) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 13, 2014
Narrator: Finn Sterling | Buy as Audio Book ($19.95)
February 12, 2014
Pure white chocolate, light, sweet, the perfect introduction to the world of m/m romance…
1. Tigers and Devils by Sean Kennedy
2. Simple Men by Eric Arvin
3. Promises by Marie Sexton
4. Bear, Otter, and the Kid by TJ Klune
5. A Helping of Love by Andrew Grey
6. Her Two Dads by Ariel Tachna
7. Wes & Toren by J.M. Colail
8. Between Two Worlds by Shelter Somerset
9. Hotel Pens by Geoffrey Knight
10. The Unforgiving Minute by Sarah Granger
February 12, 2014
Our Dark Mochaccino Mousse are stories of danger and how our men strive to overcome it.
1. Storm Season by Nessa L. Warin
2. Clouds and Rain by Zahra Owens
3. A Matter of Time by Mary Calmes
4. Dirty Secret by Rhys Ford
5. The Gifted One by Jacob Z. Flores
6. Conquer the Flames by Ariel Tachna
7. Another Healing by M. Raiya
8. Haffling by Caleb James
9. Rarer than Rubies by EM Lynley
10. Memory Kick by C.M. Torrens
Help us complete the list! Share your favorite dark mochaccino mousse stories in the comments below.
February 12, 2014
Who doesn’t love a little snow on the roof? Our White Ganache Bliss highlights the best of age and experience.
1. Snow on the Roof anthology
2. Beyond Duty by SJD Peterson
3. The General and the Horse-Lord by Sarah Black
4. The Hand-me-down by Zahra Owens
5. Inherit the Sky by Ariel Tachna
6. Good to Know by D.W. Marchwell
7. Rite of Passage by Bryl R. Tyne
8. The Cool Part of His Pillow by Rodney Ross
9. Life Begins at Forty by Jessie Blackwood
10. Spot Me by Andrew Grey
Share some white ganache bliss with us. Who are your favorite characters with a little snow on the roof?