Illusions – Let’s cast the movie version

February 13, 2015

Hi everyone! It’s S.A. Ozment again taking over the DSP blog. My new book, Illusions is being released today and I”m super excited. Did you all have a great Saturday afternoon? I live in North Carolina where the weather is sunny and hot one day and freezing the next. But speaking of hot, that’s one hot firefighter that Christie came up with for my cover. I want to use him in every cover from now on.

IllusionsFS

 

Have you ever read a book and immediately knew who would cast in the roles if the book were made into a movie? I know I have and Illusions is no exception.  If you don’t mind, I’d like to share my ideas for Skylar and Aiden and perhaps you can share who could see in the role?

Let’s start with my favorite character:

Skylar – is a Hollywood playboy. He has the world at his fingertips, ready to break out into superstardom. He is about six feet tall with dark hair and beautiful blue eyes. He works out so he is in great physical shape. He is a television star and is known for playing gay roles.

For me, there was never anyone but this particular actor for Skylar. In an earlier blog, I shared the fan video that inspired Skylar in my mind. For those that missed it, the song is The Kill by 30 Seconds to Mars.

The Kill by 30 Seconds to Mars

sebastian
His name is Sebastian Stan. You might know him as Prince Jack from the critically acclaimed NBC show, Kings or as the Mad Hatter from Once Upon a Time. Or if you are a big comic fan, he was the Winter Soldier/Bucky in the latest installments of Captain America. I think Sebastian is hands down the best American actor of his generation. One day, others will see it, just as I have. :)

Aiden - Aiden is an openly gay firefighter for the Hollywood Fire Department. He’s hardworking and dedicated to his job. He is six feet tall with blonde hair, blue eyes and hot as hell in that firefighter uniform.

Aiden was harder for me to see. As I wrote the book, I saw the guy from Chicago Fire (the blonde) but even he seemed too old for who I had in mind. I just kept writing and as I was finishing the book, I saw him. One night, I was watching a movie on Netflix called Adored. His name was Xavier Samuel. I believe he was in one of the Twilight movies as well.

adore-picture01

I finally had my Aiden.

So tell me, who would you cast in the two main roles of the movie, Illusions? I can’t wait to see your thoughts.

If you want to buy the book to meet Skylar and Aiden, it’s available at DSP , Amazon and All Romance Ebooks.

Illusions_bookmarkH_DSP

Genre: M/M Romance, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Novel
Release Date: February 13, 2015
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Christy Caughie

Link: e-book  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6041

Link: paperback http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6042

BLURB

Ever since arriving in Hollywood, Skylar Murphy has been loving life. He’s starring in a hit television show and on the verge of grabbing the lead role in the most anticipated movie of the decade. Poised on the edge of superstardom, he doesn’t want or need any complications to distract him from that goal. Whether he’s sleeping with a woman or a man, his noncommittal, no-strings-attached love life suits him perfectly, and despite his rep for playing gay roles, the world still thinks he’s straight.

At the launch party for his new show, Skylar meets Aiden Moore, an openly gay firefighter by day and cater waiter to the stars by night. Skylar is immediately attracted to him, but Aiden rejects him. When an arsonist appears to have targeted Skylar, their paths keep crossing. Always up for a challenge, Skylar works to win Aiden over, and he agrees to a date. Soon enough they can’t stay away from each other. Despite hiding their relationship away from the ever-present paparazzi, they’re hap

Illusions Blog Post – Excerpt #2

February 13, 2015

I’m having a blast blogging over here at DSP! Thank you to anyone who joined me.

In the book, you’re introduced to Aiden’s best friend, Ryan, who is Skylar’s biggest fan. After Skylar, Ryan’s my favorite character. He is star-struck and he doesn’t care who knows it. He’s a loyal and funny friend and I just loved writing for him.

I wanted to share an excerpt with Ryan. This is a very short piece but I hope you can see the comedy in Ryan’s voice here. Ryan has found out that Aiden and Skylar are having a first date. Being the loyal friend that he is -and to meet Skylar- he shows up at Aiden’s house to help him prepare for his big date.

Excerpt number two: Illusions.

Curious, Aiden pulled the bag over to him. As he looked in the bag, he was immediately sorry he had bothered to open it. Inside were colorful condoms, lube, and something that resembled handcuffs. “You know, this isn’t a casting call for Fifty Shades of Grey,” he said in frustration. “It’s coffee.”
“Yeah, yeah… first coffee, a couple of goofy stares into one another’s eyes, then you’re signing consensual letters regarding bondage and having fan fiction written about your sex life.” Rolling his eyes, Ryan continued, “Really, darling, you should have watched Royal Life. Just so you know, that boy can be a smokin’ hot love machine.”
“When are you going to remember he’s an actor, not the prince from Royal Life?”
Ryan shook his head in disbelief. Exasperated, he corrected Aiden, “Uhhhhh… first off, he is not the prince; he’s the best friend of the prince. And secondly, yes, he’s a great actor, but I’ll bet my next three paychecks that he rocked that man’s world from a real-life experience.”

About Illusions

Illusions_bookmarkH_DSP

Genre: M/M Romance, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Novel
Release Date: February 13, 2015
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Christy Caughie

Link: e-book  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6041

Link: paperback http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6042

BLURB

Ever since arriving in Hollywood, Skylar Murphy has been loving life. He’s starring in a hit television show and on the verge of grabbing the lead role in the most anticipated movie of the decade. Poised on the edge of superstardom, he doesn’t want or need any complications to distract him from that goal. Whether he’s sleeping with a woman or a man, his noncommittal, no-strings-attached love life suits him perfectly, and despite his rep for playing gay roles, the world still thinks he’s straight.

At the launch party for his new show, Skylar meets Aiden Moore, an openly gay firefighter by day and cater waiter to the stars by night. Skylar is immediately attracted to him, but Aiden rejects him. When an arsonist appears to have targeted Skylar, their paths keep crossing. Always up for a challenge, Skylar works to win Aiden over, and he agrees to a date. Soon enough they can’t stay away from each other. Despite hiding their relationship away from the ever-present paparazzi, they’re happy together until a jilted fan joins forces with the arsonist to sabotage their future.

Illusions – First Excerpt

February 13, 2015

Hi, it’s S.A again chatting with you all about Illusions.

How about I share an excerpt here?  Skylar has met Aiden at the premier party for Skylar’s new television show. The only problem is although Skylar recognizes Aiden, he doesn’t remember his name. Therefore, he simply refers to him  as Mr. Champagne.

There’s a fire at the sound stage where Skylar works and he sees Mr. Champagne.…..

EXCERPT

“…” refers to edited dialogue for length

***********

It couldn’t be… could it? Skylar looked again to make sure he was not mistaken. This time Skylar saw the flicker of recognition in Mr. Champagne’s eyes before he turned back to continue talking to his chief. As Skylar stood there, trying to decide his next move, he watched Mr. Champagne grab an ax from the side of the truck, put on his helmet, and disappear into the building. That was it. Maybe it was the sheer hotness of that guy just grabbing his ax and walking into a smoke-filled building, or maybe it was the memory of that rock-hard body, but Skylar knew he had to know more about him, fan or not.

“…..”

Mr. Champagne walked out of the building, which was now almost smoke free, and headed toward the fire engine. As he removed his helmet to wipe the sweat off his face, Sophie knew immediately why Skylar was so interested. It was the hot serving guy she had seen him flirting with at the party.

“Is that the guy?” asked Sophie, motioning toward the firefighter.

Skylar moved to block her from Mr. Champagne’s view. “Yes, that’s him, and would you please stop being so obvious?”

“Are you going to talk to him?” she asked.

Getting annoyed at the constant string of questions, Skylar just glared at Sophie and said, “I might. I haven’t decided yet.” Then, motioning toward the sound stage, he said, “But will you please meet me on set? I’ll be there in a second.”

“Okay, fine, but I really think you should talk to him.” At Skylar’s second glare she said, “I’m leaving, I’m leaving. See you in a few.” Sophie walked off down to Sound stage 5.

“…”

Turning back to Mr. Champagne, who looked slightly busy trying to get the hose latched onto the truck, Skylar tried to be patient. But after a few more minutes, Skylar felt he had waited long enough. It’s now or never, he thought as he started toward the fire truck and the sexy fireman.

“Hey,” said Skylar as he walked up behind Mr. Champagne.

Mr. Champagne turned around. Upon seeing it was Skylar, he said, “Hey,” and then he immediately turned back to his truck to finish tying in the hose. He had no time for the disappearing actor.

Okay, what the fuck? Not sure exactly how to take that reaction, but not wanting to back down, Skylar continued, “I saw you a few minutes ago, talking to your fire chief, and I thought that I recognized you. Didn’t you work The Executives premiere party the other night?”

Aiden paused for a second, then turned back and replied, “Yeah, that was me.” And then, unable to stop himself, Aiden said, “Although, I must say, I’m surprised you remembered me. If I’m not mistaken, you were more than wasted that night.”

“You can say that again,” Skylar agreed. “….”  “Yet, I do remember you, so I believe that proves that I did have some clarity that night. But I have to admit, if you introduced yourself to me, your name was lost someplace between six and eight gin and tonics.”

Aiden looked at him for a second before responding, “Actually, I didn’t find it necessary to introduce myself. I was just serving champagne to the party guests.”

Well, damn! Skylar, a bit taken back by the chill in the fireman’s voice, said, “Okay. I only thought that you might have because in my experience, most fans introduce themselves right away. Forgive me, I didn’t mean to assume something so simple.”

Aiden turned all the way around, looked Skylar straight in the eye, and said, “Actually you’re still assuming, if you think I’m a fan. Truth is, until that night, I didn’t know who you were.” He paused before finishing with, “Sorry about that.”

Skylar, a bit insulted yet somehow intrigued, stood there for a moment, taking all this new information in. Then he smiled, held out his hand, and quietly said, “No apology needed. Let me introduce myself. My name is Skylar Murphy.” And you are certainly going to know me now.

****************************************************

So what do you think? Do they have a chance?

IllusionsFS

Genre: M/M Romance, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Novel
Release Date: February 13, 2015
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Christy Caughie

Link: e-book  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6041

Link: paperback http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6042

Illusions – My inspiration for the Book

February 13, 2015

Hi, it’s S.A. again. I’ll be on the DSP blog until noon today and back again around 5pm EST until Midnight.

Illusions_bookmarkH_DSP

Today is the release day for my very first novel, Illusions and I wanted to share with you my start in writing. In February 2013, I was laid off from my job of twenty-two years. After getting over the initial panic, I started the endless chore of trying to find a job. My day consisted of filling out online resumes and eating. Can you say, “stress eater”?

I was watching a few You Tube videos during my down time and I saw a fan video made with The Kill – by 30 Seconds to Mars. It featured one of my favorite actors and my crush, Sebastian Stan, from his old television show, “Kings”. I remembered how much I love the show and how angry it made me that the Prince (Sebastian’s character) hadn’t been able to be with his boyfriend (a non-noble) due to his title and his father saying he could never be gay and be the King.

I had wanted to write a m/m love story for a long time and this video gave the idea for Illusions. I needed someone unattainable so I went with what I know – Hollywood. Since we’ve all have had out celebrity crushes, I thought that maybe it would be fun to write a love story between a Hollywood celebrity and a non-celeb type person. I chose a firefighter because I think they are heroic and all kinds of amazing.

Below is the You Tube video that started it all for me..well for Illusions. But first, tell me, have you ever had a crush on a celebrity? If so, who and why?

Link: e-book  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6041

Link: paperback http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6042

Illusions – Hello from S.A. Ozment

February 13, 2015

Hi there! I’m S.A. Ozment and I’m here to chat with you guys about my first novel Illusions that is being released today! I’m so excited and ready to start, but first let me thank DSP for allowing me time on the blog today.

Illusions is about Skylar Murphy, a Hollywood television star who is on the verge of superstardom. The last thing he needs is any type of complications but enter one hot Hollywood Firefighter and soon Skylar has complications coming in from all directions. Add to that the manipulations of an arsonist, the town of Hollywood and Skylar may have more than he bargained for.

Below is the cover (didn’t Christie do a fantastic job) along with a blurb from the book. I’m going to grab a coffee and I’ll be right back. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them. I’ll be giving away two books today (your choice as to e-book or paperback) so stay tuned to find out how to win a copy.

IllusionsFS

Genre: M/M Romance, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Novel
Release Date: February 13, 2015
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Christy Caughie

Link: e-book http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6041

Link: paperback http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6042

BLURB

Ever since arriving in Hollywood, Skylar Murphy has been loving life. He’s starring in a hit television show and on the verge of grabbing the lead role in the most anticipated movie of the decade. Poised on the edge of superstardom, he doesn’t want or need any complications to distract him from that goal. Whether he’s sleeping with a woman or a man, his noncommittal, no-strings-attached love life suits him perfectly, and despite his rep for playing gay roles, the world still thinks he’s straight.

At the launch party for his new show, Skylar meets Aiden Moore, an openly gay firefighter by day and cater waiter to the stars by night. Skylar is immediately attracted to him, but Aiden rejects him. When an arsonist appears to have targeted Skylar, their paths keep crossing. Always up for a challenge, Skylar works to win Aiden over, and he agrees to a date. Soon enough they can’t stay away from each other. Despite hiding their relationship away from the ever-present paparazzi, they’re happy together until a jilted fan joins forces with the arsonist to sabotage their future.

MOVING ALONG – KEN BACHTOLD – ALL BY MYSELF

February 2, 2015

Lordy! I just realized I mispelled the names of BOTH Ariel Tachna and Marie Sexton! I can only blame the heady throws of composing posts to the great people who responded to me. We actually had back and forth conversations! The best. More personal. I’m so grateful to all of you because this is my first blog, although All By Myself XvNkGpic7Skp is my third novel to be published by Dreamspinner! I feel so lucky and without the ongoing help of Hayley Petersen (sainthood is in order) I doubt this blogging would have happened at all! Did anyone else have trouble at first with blogging?

Rhys Ford’s Dirty Rings: A Cole McGinnis Ringtone Set Voiced by Greg Tremblay

January 9, 2015

Dirty_Ring_Banner

So a funny thing happened on the way to a tweet, Greg Tremblay, the fantastic narrator of my Dirty series, texted me and said… hey, you should giveaway a custom ringtone. Or something to that effect. There was some discussion. A few emails and then well, long story short—there may have been some pixilated shots of whiskey and banter but a plan was formed. A plan so cunning I could have stuck a tail on it and called it a weasel.

Mostly, it involved Greg. And your phone. But it was still a plan!

After a furious, intense process of queries, eliminations, debating on who said what, we came up with a set of phrases from Cole, Bobby, Jae, Claudia, Scarlet and one from Maddy then Greg went to work. And returned to me with a brilliant sound bites forged by a narrative master—in the style of the characters’ voices.

So dear reader, as a thank you for everything you’ve done for Greg and me, I’d like to present the entire set of ringtones—twenty one in total—FREE, as a gift to you.

Available in Android (MP3) and iPhone (formats for Android and Apple phones, Greg has also graciously included the WAV files if that’s your thing. Download links to the zipped files are provided below.*

A great humongous thank you to all of the blogs who helped me with this guerilla gifting. This swirled up on Tuesday and Greg just MADE it happen. He is the voice of the series and I am forever grateful for his talent.

If you’ve not tried out Greg Tremblay’s narrations, please do so. He makes audiobooks fun and damn, he brings Cole and the others to life.

Greg Tremblay’s body of work can be found here—and yes, the Dirty series is there but so are many other lovely audio books. I highly recommend one of Greg’s audiobooks, a comfy chair, a pair of headphones and a nice hot cup of coffee… or tea… with or without whisky.

* These are copyrighted and available free for individual use. The files included in the zip cannot be sold by third parties nor can they be altered in anyway as to destroy the integrity of the original work. Animals were test subjects for these sound files and while the cat could not have given less of a shit, the dog seemed mighty interested. Please note, neither own nor use a phone or a computer so results may vary.

Love you all, and really, Thank You.

Rhys Ford

Dirty Rings Android MP3

Dirty Rings Apple M4a

Dirty Rings Apple M4r

Dirty Rings Wav

The Wheat Paste Heart by Tray Ellis

January 6, 2015

“You know this is illegal, right?”

Saxon only paused for a moment to shrug his shoulders and then he continued to apply the homemade wheat paste to the wall with the small paint roller.  Tonight he was installing a series of small posters, ranging from the size of his hand to that of the front of a folded out newspaper.  He’d been working on this project for weeks.  If he had to get caught, he’d have wanted it to be after the display was up and set, but he’d have preferred not to found out at all. He was caught, but he wasn’t stopped. Not yet.  So he kept working.

With the concrete retaining wall covered in sticky, wet paste Saxon put the roller away into a plastic bag and retrieved the folder containing his artwork. He flipped it open to reveal the overall schematic. He’d been doing guerrilla art for nearly a year and a lot of it had been trial and error, but now he had some knowledge and tonight’s project was the culmination of a lot of effort.  The location was risky, but it had been too important not to attempt.  It made all the difference and he wasn’t going to back away.

“If you get caught, you’re going to be in a lot of trouble.”

That made Saxon turn to address his unexpected visitor. “If?” he asked. It seemed the most important aspect of the previous statement.

James scuffed his foot on the ground and it was difficult to read his expression in the nighttime darkness. “I’m not a snitch,” he said.

Saxon thought about that for a moment.  “Thanks,” he finally said.  He looked around him, considering.  It was the middle of the night and he was in a generally non-visible section of a pathway near his high school.  A concrete retaining wall had been built into the ground with a direct sightline from the path, which kids used constantly during the day.  If James was traveling here at this time of night, then he’d been sneaking out as well.  Probably it was more trouble to mention this fact than it’d be worth to confront James with it, and besides, it seemed he wasn’t going to reveal Saxon’s complicity.    ”I only need fifteen more minutes and this’ll be done,” Saxon added and then he returned to his task.

James moved closer, hovering, and glancing at Saxon’s materials.  “What are you doing? Can I help?”

“Sure.”  Saxon handed over the schematic.  “I’m putting these up.  Make sure I have it all in the right place.  Each piece will be part of the whole picture.”

James squinted at the schematic.  The moon was almost full in the clear night sky, shedding a lot of light, but it would still be hard to read. Saxon had waited for the perfect night.  He’d needed enough natural moonlight to work without a flashlight and good weather.  It had rained heavily for the past week and tonight had seemed optimum.

Saxon didn’t need to review the drawing.  He already knew by heart where everything went.

The overall design incorporated more than two dozen drawings of hot air balloons.  Each balloon was heart-shaped with a unique pattern. Each basket below held a single individual.  They were all arranged to seem to float magnificently and peacefully in the sky.  Below them were a handful of terrible, savage creatures with mean eyes and frightful postures, holding different types weapons. Saxon had adorned each with a capital B on their chest, painted bright scarlet, and he had to thank Mr. Beezy someday for the extra reading assignments or else he wouldn’t have known to make that connection.  One of the tormentors had hit his mark.  There was a ragged hole in a beautiful balloon and it was losing altitude, about to crash to the earth.  The individual in the basket was certainly doomed.

Saxon placed the very last piece of paper onto the pasted wall, smoothing it in place so that it adhered strongly:  STOP BULLYING.

He stepped back to look over the entire scene.  The whole installation was over fifteen feet wide and six feet high. The adrenaline he’d felt rushing through him the whole night ebbed away.  He felt calm and serene, his heart as full and light as the hot-air balloons.  Tomorrow, everyone would see it.

“Wow,” James said.

“It has to stop.”  Saxon was tired.  Tired of hiding who he was and tired of waiting, always waiting for some distant day in the future when it would get better. He was tired of being afraid, tired of letting slip that he had different ideas about boys and girls than most of his schoolmates. He looked over at James. “You won’t tell?”

He didn’t know James well. They had different classes and different interests.  James was athletic, but wasn’t a star performer.  He was smart, but not top of the class.  He blended in and never made waves.  Suddenly, he realized that James might be more like him than not.  People who were different sometimes spent their whole lives hiding in plain sight.

“I won’t tell,” James promised, with the solemn childhood gesture of crossing a finger over his heart. He held out a hand.

Saxon looked at it for a moment, surprised.  Then he reached out and shook.  It felt odd and very grown-up.

“If you do something like this again, call me.  I’ll help.”

“Okay,” Saxon said. Then James helped him stuff the last of his materials into his backpack and, convinced he hadn’t left any telltale evidence behind, they exchanged a last serious look, and each went their own way into the dark.

______________________________

Tray Ellis grew up with two brothers and many cats and dogs. Her family loves to cook, eat, sit around talking, and quote old movies at each other. The more laughter the better, and her family loves to laugh. Tray has a completely romantic view of autumn, and thinks it is the perfect season and an excellent source of writing inspiration. When she isn’t writing, she keeps busy by jogging, fishing, cooking, baking, and keeping her home in some semblance of order. (Perhaps she has completely exaggerated that her home is in any kind of order whatsoever.) She can be found at her website and Facebook.

Get to Know K.C. Wells

January 6, 2015

Do any of your characters haunt you and if so, why?

I really don’t think any of my characters haunt me. Sean’s predicament in Learning to Love: Final Exam, now, that’s another matter. I cried writing those scenes. Even now when I read the scene before he goes in for surgery, I tear up.  What comes across is how scared he is – and how much he loves his husband Michael.

Please give us the inside scoop on your upcoming release, A Bond of Three.

This was one of my first ideas for a book, back in 2012, only it wouldn’t leave me alone. Having said that, the novel changed direction when I got to the chapter introducing Prince Sorran. He was….different. And when I got my head around that, I suddenly had a very different plan for the story.

I met with author Chris Quinton in the summer of 2012, when she came to visit the Isle of Wight where I live. I outlined the story for her. She listened intently, and when I’d finished, she looked me in the eye and said, “you have to write that book.” Whoa.

I admit to being a little nervous. So far I’ve written either contemporary or BDSM. This was A, an MMM story, B, a fantasy and C with an added dash of paranormal for good measure – yeah, nothing liked anything I’d written to date. When I first started sending chapters to my betas, I was getting the same response….

“I don’t like fantasy.”

“I don’t like ménage.”

“Hell, woman, give me MORE!!!!”

I sent an advance copy to a friend who doesn’t normally ‘do’ ménage – three guesses what her response was? LOL

So yes, I am awaiting the response from my readers with mixed feelings.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not writing?

HA! My close friends would say, “But she’s always writing!!!!” Er, I read, I love watching movies, I knit, I used to paint, but writing is far more satisfying. But there’s always my notebook not far away – I’ve learnt by now to keep it close. Ideas come ALL the time! But yes, it’s true that if I were writing more, I’d be a happy bunny.

What’s one of your guilty pleasure?

OOOH….Snuggling up with a good book, usually one that I know really well – the Deviations series by Chris Owen, ANY of the Jarhead series by Sean Michael,  the Jock Dorm series by Bobby Michaels, (One of the first MM series I ever read and I still love them)

Then there’s my other guilty pleasure… and nope, you’re hearing NOTHING about that one! ;-)

_____________________________

Born and raised in the north-west of England, K.C. Wells always loved writing. Words were important. Full stop. However, when childhood gave way to adulthood, the writing ceased, as life got in the way.

K.C. discovered erotic fiction in 2009, where the purchase of a ménage storyline led to the startling discovery that reading about men in love was damn hot. In 2012, arriving at a really low point in life led to the desperate need to do something creative. An even bigger discovery waited in the wings—writing about men in love was even hotter….

K.C. now writes full time and is loving every minute of her new career. The laptop still has no idea of what hit it… it only knows that it wants a rest, please. And it now has to get used to the idea that where K.C goes, it goes.

K.C. can be reached via e-mail, on Facebook, or through comments at the K.C. Wells website. K.C. loves to hear from readers.

Sweet Fire Release Party – Sarah and Shannen Brady Part 6

January 3, 2015

SweetFire_headerbanner

riverfront park

 

Sarah here, ONE MORE TIME!

Check out Riverfront Park in the daylight.  Nice, huh?  This is where Aaron and Ramón like to go running. Hot, sweaty, beautiful men, pretty flowers. Perfect.

OK, that was totally random, though I really love that run-through-the-park scene.

If you’ve enjoyed your jaunt through Spokane with the boys and would like to see more, feel free to check out the other stops on our blog tour. Here they are:

January 2 (I know, that was yesterday but you can still check it out.) Interview with J. Scott Coatsworth at www.queerscifi.com

January 4 Visit with Tracy St. John, Queen of Kalqorians at Wicked Words, www.tracystjohn.blogspot.com (Sexiest aliens ever! I own every book.)

January 5 Guest blog with Tara Lain, creator of the Harker Pack series, among other amazing books http://taralain.com.

January 6 Guest blog with Dreamspinner author Anne Barwell at Drops of Ink http://anne-barwell.livejournal.com.

January 7 Guest spot with Tempeste O’Riley, (wait a minute while I go all fangirl over her Designs of Desire series. Sweet and kinky-hot at the same time. Awesome. OK, we can go on now.) http://tempesteoriley.com/blog/

January 12 Guest spot with Elizabeth Noble on Emotion in Motion http://www.elizabeth-noble.com

If you want to know more about our weird and wonderful publishing journey or our books, both out and in progress, feel free to check out our own web site www.sbradybooks.com, like us on Facebook at SBradyBooks or follow us on Twitter @sbradybooks.

It’s been a long day of Book Release Excitement but it’s time to wrap it up. The prize winner will be contacted tomorrow. Thanks so much to Dreamspinner Press for letting us have the blog today. Thanks to Tricia, our senior editor, and all the other editors who helped knock Sweet Fire into shape to publish, and to Paul and Haley and Rose and Naomi and all the rest of the Dreamspinner team. We couldn’t have done this without your help. Andrew Grey, because we love your books, we forgive you for making off with our original title. If we had to lose it, it’s an honor to lose it to you. (The working title of this book was Fire and Water and now we know why DSP made us change it.)

I hope everyone enjoyed this peek into Sweet Fire. We’ll leave you with my favorite scene out of everything I’ve ever written, where Ramón takes Aaron to his favorite bear bar and we find out Ramón’s not so uptight after all.  Good night everybody and thanks for stopping by.

 

Excerpt:

Ramón set a pair of tall green glasses on the table and slid onto the stool at right angles to his own chair, facing the dance floor.

“So you come here now and then, do you?”

Ramón’s cheek twitched. “Maybe a little more often than that.” He scanned the room and nodded at yet another person waving at him. “Most of the gay contingent of the county’s cops, firefighters, and EMTs come here. The band has a regular gig here too. They’re pretty good.”

“I bet they are, but the next time you say you’ve been somewhere a few times, I’ll have to assume you’re full of shit.”

Ramón grinned at him and raised his glass in a toast just as the sound system roared to life. The bass player plucked out an opening riff that had Ramón jerking his head around to stare at him, then dropping his face into his hand. Concerned, Aaron put a hand to his shoulder. What the hell? He didn’t understand what was going on until the bass player stopped and the lead singer stepped up to the mike.

“Looks like we have some old friends in the crowd tonight!” The man’s voice was deep and smoke-raspy, and he was looking right at their table. Ramón looked up and shook his head, clearly telling the man no way.

Del Rio!” The massive drummer had a massive voice, and the chant was quickly picked up, first by the band and Ramón’s loud friends at the bar, then by the rest of the patrons.

Rio! Rio! Rio!” Ramón pinched the bridge of his nose and closed his eyes for a minute while Aaron stared incredulously. It was obvious as soon as they walked in that Ramón was well known here, but he certainly never expected anything like this.

It quickly became clear that the noise wasn’t going to stop until the man did whatever the hell it was they wanted. Ramón slid off his chair and touched Aaron’s cheek with an apologetic smile, then turned and walked quickly to the stage, while the chant turned into a roar of whistles and cheers. Merciful gods! Aaron watched in stunned amazement as Ramón, solid, serious Ramón set one hand on the edge of the stage and vaulted onto it. He stood with his back to the room for a long moment, plucking in what Aaron assumed was a nervous tic at the buttons at the cuffs and the front of his shirt.

Shocked as he was to see his quiet lover leap onto the stage, he was still unprepared for what came next. The oldies bass riff came again, and Ramón turned quickly around, ripping off his shirt at the same time. The dark cotton shirt drifted to the stage floor, leaving Ramón in a thin wifebeater tank that gleamed whitely against his beautiful copper-brown skin. Aaron tried to swallow with his suddenly dry throat and gulped at his sticky drink.

Somehow the smooth baritone voice was the least shocking part of this whole incredible experience. As a soulful rendition of “Stand By Me” rolled over him, Ramón held his eyes, and the rest of the room faded completely away.

The first verse and the chorus came to him from the stage, and then, miraculously, unbelievably, it got even better. On the second verse, as the rest of the band started a smooth vocal backup, Ramón took the small headset that the lead handed him and started down the stage stairs. His eyes never left Aaron’s as he prowled down the steps and skirted the dance floor toward their small table.

The second chorus came, intense and soulful, and Ramón’s hand slid down Aaron’s throat and chest, taking all the air out of his lungs in the process. He struggled to breathe as the instrumental break gave Ramón an opportunity to lean in and run his mouth butterfly light along Aaron’s jaw and over the sensitive spot under his ear. The tiny headset mike his lover wore picked up a faint echo of two pounding heartbeats that blended seamlessly with the heavy bass line. By the time he pulled away, it was all Aaron could do to let him go, watching with his heart in his throat, tears in his eyes, and all the blood in his body in his jeans. The final chorus brought Ramón back up to the stage, moving back up the stairs with that panther-like grace that kept the eye of every man in the room riveted to his magnificent body.

The song ended, and the crowd went wild. Aaron hardly heard any of it as he sat frozen in his chair, gripping his hideous green glass with one hand and pressing the other to his chest, trying to get his rioting pulse under control. An erratic flame danced wildly in the glass candleholder. Suddenly Ramón was there, sweeping him out of his seat and into his arms to a fresh surge of whistles and cheers from the crowd. The band started a new song, without Ramón this time, and the two of them moved effortlessly together on the dance floor. As the space filled up with grinding, gyrating men, Ramón’s mouth came down over his, and Aaron knew, without a doubt, that the happily-ever-after he’d been waiting for all his life was right here in his arms.