Friday, February 28, 2014

INTERVIEW: CJane Elliott

Today we are talking to the lovely CJane Elliott who comes to us with a VERY bold, VERY dashing hat. She thought she might have to flee the country after revealing said hat, but it just makes me love her MORE!

Hello CJane and welcome to Home of the Sweetness <3 Thank you so much for subjecting yourself to the RANDOMNESS that is a Raine O'Tierney interview! Please don your best hat, and let's get started!

You are a fan of coming out stories! What draws you to this particular theme?
I love those times in life when someone confronts their fears and goes beyond them. I love when a person is willing to let go of who they’ve been for who they could become. I’m inspired by people being true to their deepest selves, even if they have to upset their family, church, or society to do it. It takes such courage.

I want to know your deepest, most hidden writing dream! Nothing is too big or too wild. 
You mean, other than writing a runaway bestseller so I can retire from my day job and live and write on my private island? An actual hidden writing dream is to write a screenplay that gets produced in film or on T.V. A second dream is to write a musical based on one of my books with my son Nathan (who is the musician part of the team).

Your thoughts on libraries: GO!
I love libraries. ALL THOSE BOOKS! When I was young, they were a treasure trove. They still are, although I don’t go as often as I used to.

If creating were poison to you—so that each time you made a beautiful new thing, you would become weaker—would you still continue to do it?
Oh, wow, what a question. I don’t know! I guess the “right” answer is “Of course, I’d have to do it! I can’t NOT create!” But that’s not actually true. I’ve had long periods where I wasn’t actively engaged in making a beautiful new thing. The problem with deciding I’d no longer engage in the “poison” of creating is that I’d be left in this grey netherworld, which is a place I’ve lived in before and have no interest in returning to.

Describe yourself using song lyrics.

Here’s about me in my writing career:  

Ain't nothing gonna break my stride
Nobody's gonna slow me down
Oh no, I've got to keep on moving
Ain't nothing gonna break my stride
I'm running and I won't touch ground
Oh no, I've got to keep on moving

-Break My Stride, Matthew Wilder

Here’s lyrics from a song that inspired me to write m/m, people’s opinions be damned:

Why can’t we all be free without any filter
And gush ‘cause we’re so fresh together?
Why can’t we all be proud and shout it out loud?
Embrace it because sex is not the enemy

- Kiss and Tell, Adam Lambert

What is your superpower? What is your Kryptonite? 
My superpower is x-ray vision! I’m a Scorpio and a therapist and I have this way of looking at a person and knowing what’s going on with them without them having to say it. But don’t worry, I use my power for good. My Kryptonite is worrying what other people will think about me.

You have 200 words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!) 

Sol started when he felt Max take hold of his right hand. He glanced at him, holding his breath. Max turned his hand over to study the tattoo on the inside of his wrist, then traced the tattoo with his callused index finger. Shifting in his seat, Sol cleared his throat, letting his other hand drift to cover his lap.

He stared at Max but Max was gazing at Sol’s wrist like he was memorizing it. He held it now with both hands, his wedding ring glinting. Frozen, Sol watched as Max lifted his wrist and pressed his lips to it. Sol closed his eyes, feeling those lips touch him, warm and dry.

The bus sped along, vibrating and humming with its usual nighttime noises. They lurched a bit as the bus took a corner, and Max brushed his lips once more over Sol’s tattoo. Sol gasped, then bit into his bottom lip, hard, when Max began to plant a trail of small kisses from his wrist up over the heel of his hand and into his palm.

He needed to stop this. He needed even more for it to continue.

What is one mistake you’ve made during your writing career that you’ve learned and grown from?
Hiding in my writing cave and not doing anything to promote the first three novellas I published with Dreamspinner. I dove in to promoting my new novel, Serpentine Walls, and I’ve met so many supportive and lovely writers, reviewers and readers. It’s a lot more fun.

What are you going to do to survive during the zombie apocalypse?
As noted above, hiding is my favorite thing, so I’ll probably find the most secret place I can and hole up there until it’s over.

What is something completely random that inspires you?
Spirals. I LOVE spirals. I have a spiral shell on my writing table and pictures of spirals everywhere. It’s the notion that nothing ever goes in a straight line and sometimes we don’t think we’re going anywhere, but we are.

And finally, for THE most important question of all: what kinds of dachshunds are the BEST kinds of dachshunds?
Um, is this a trick question? Should I do some research on your site to find pics of a particular kind of dachshund? ALL KINDS!

Official Blurb:

Reeling from the news that his parents are divorcing, Pete Morgan starts his junior year at college cynical about love and commitment. Although his new openness to one-night stands does wonders for his sex life, fighting his romantic nature proves harder than he’d anticipated. He soon finds himself pining for a glamorous senior, Aidan, who doesn’t mind taking Pete to bed but shows no interest in commitment—at least not with Pete. And Pete’s attempt at a “friends-with-benefits” relationship with sophomore Jed leaves Pete feeling empty.

One bright spot in Pete’s year is Matthew, an easygoing graduate student who assists Pete in making his first film. Matthew has some baggage too, and has sworn off relationships and sex altogether, so Pete feels safe to enjoy their friendship. But he falls for Matthew anyway, not able to fight his growing conviction that Matthew is the perfect guy for him. Even if Pete can accept that he made a mistake when he turned his back on relationships, that doesn't mean Matthew will feel the same. With a few life lessons under his belt, Pete’s ready to take a chance on love. As he finds the courage to bare his heart to Matthew, he can only hope that Matthew will take a chance with him.

Buy it here: Dreamspinner  Amazon

Author Bio:

After years of hearing characters chatting away in her head, CJane Elliott finally decided to put them on paper and hasn't looked back since. A psychotherapist by training, CJane enjoys writing sexy, passionate stories that also explore the human psyche. CJane has traveled all over North Americafor work and her characters are travelers, too, traveling down into their own depths to find what they need to get to the happy ending. CJane is an ardent supporter of gay equality and is particularly fond of coming out stories.

In her spare time, CJane can be found dancing, listening to music, or watching old movies. Her husband and son support her writing habit by staying out of the way when they see her hunched over, staring intensely at her laptop.

Ways to contact CJane Elliott:

Thursday, February 27, 2014

INTERVIEW: Saura Underscore

Today we are talking to the darling Saura_ (who wins the prize for THE most creative writing name on the planet!

Hello Saura and welcome to Home of the Sweetness <3 Thank you so much for subjecting yourself to the RANDOMNESS that is a Raine O'Tierney interview! Please don your best hat, and let's get started!

Tell me all about your very unique name ~ Saura Underscore!

Well first of all thank you for having me! It’s a pleasure to meet you and your readers!

“Saura” was the female principal character in my very first finished novel, back to when I was 14. She was a warrior and I put on her personality everything I wanted to be that I wasn’t. So I took her name the first time I had to use a nick (long time ago, when the internet was invented), and I’ve used it ever since. When I first came into the “Slash” world, I looked for “Saura” as my user, but it was already taken, so I decided to add something to the name that would make it unique. I turned out to be “Saura_”.

However, every time somebody wanted to mention me, they only wrote “saura”, and that wasn’t me, and I found myself saying things like “It’s ‘saura_’, with the little thing underneath”. Later on I discovered that “the little thing underneath” was called “underscore”. So, yeah. Hi. This is Saura Underscore (Saura_). *waves*

If you could go back in time and have a conversation with 13-year-old yourself right now, what would you say?

The first thing that popped in my mind was “keep on writing”. But the Saura of those days was writing my first novel ever (the one from which I would take the name from), and I’m 100% sure she’d never stop writing no matter what.

So I think I’d tell her: no, you’re not adopted but it won’t matter that much in the end, and don’t stop believing: you’d be able to do important things.

One of the things that I was more afraid of was the absolute certainty I had that I would never do anything important. I wasn’t going to discover the cure for cancer, I wasn’t going to be the first woman on Mars, I wasn’t going to find the way to stop wars or prevent hunger…  Now I realize that I didn’t know what “important” was, and I’d like to tell 13-years-old-Saura that “Important” is what you would have when you turn out 40: a house, someone who loves you in return, a kid that thinks you’re awesome, friends, two jobs and two published books. And yeah. Those are truly important things for someone who was born to be a no one.

What is your biggest, most wildest writing dream or goal?

13 years old Saura would answer to that question. I was in high school, learning Spanish Literature in the most boring way ever (just learning a list of dates, authors, titles) , and I realized that I had to learn a lot of dates for just one important author each. One important author worth to be known for one single novel. The one and only novel this author got published, and that had marked an era in the Spanish Literature.

I wanted to be one of those authors. I wanted to appear in high school’s textbooks for one unique book, so that high school pupils in 2100 had to learn my name and dates of birth and passing, just for it. Evil, I know. Probably that’s why I have two books already, none of which is good enough to get not even in any Spanish library for now.

Your thoughts on libraries: GO!

Errr –quick, quick, quick–, errr… They are full of books that are not my own because my own are only sold for e-readers??

Nah, now serious. Libraries are those places in which you can find thousand of doors to different worlds, all of them unique and special. When I was a kid I used to love it when my Mum allowed me to get into a library and stay there for a while, just looking at books and reading them randomly. Now that I’m older and I have my own kid, I read him every night a night-tale, I read to him every time he wants, no matter when it is –and I take him to take looks at library shops (no more public libraries in my town, unfortunately, but that was the first thing to close when the crisis stroke), and I buy him really pretty books when I can afford them. He already has double the number of books I did at his age!

Your new story is a historical! What draws you to writing historicals? Did you have any particular challenges writing Medieval Tales?

I’ve always loved historical novels. Well, let’s be precise: I’ve always loved historical fiction. There IS a difference between the two, and I’ve always found more enjoyable the historical fiction: novels that are set in a period of time more or less recognizable, but that are almost impossible to have ever occurred. The Medieval Tales is one like that.

What makes me enjoy this kind of fiction is precisely the fact that a lot of things that can happen in this kind of novel were impossible in a concrete real moment of history. I can take real events and twist them, make them new and favorable for my roles.

To make it clearer, let’s take my own story: my characters have to deal with the reality that was the Crusades: death, holly war, moral rightness, the tight noblemen and the ignorant servants. A true knight (the real ones) would never doubt their orders, or if God really send them to conquer Jerusalem. A proud nobleman would never thought of his king being unfair for not being on the desert with them. My characters do, and that’s what makes it (almost!) impossible to have really happened. History is told by winners: Christianity won (if not Jerusalem, it won our way to see history), so no Christian knight would ever look at an Arab as more than a soulless dog, an evil, an infidel! My characters do. One of my characters falls in love with an Arab.

I found in historical fiction a way to make history fairer. I don’t pretend to show any historical lesson; my accuracy must have to be enough to make it believable to have happened, but it’s not real. It couldn’t have happened. I don’t lie on that, and I really appreciate those who have read the Tales for now understand them for what they are: Tales that make an ugly reality, slightly better.

What is your superpower? What is your Kryptonite?

I think one “superpower” (if you want to call it like that), is that I learn quite quickly. I was very lazy as a young girl to learn to cook, but when I had to do it, I learned and now I love it (and my kid says I cook better than grandma, and that’s amazing!).

My Kryptonite is my own sense of failure. I always think that I’m going to fail no matter what I do to prevent it. My councilor says it has to do with a low self-esteem and my kid is working on that too (you cannot have low self-esteem when someone so young depends on you for believing in themselves).

You have 200 words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!)

[From Medieval Tales: Battle Front]

Omar's mouth was hot and wet around Wyon's cock as the younger man took him deep, distracting him effectively from the pressure of oiled fingers on his entrance. Pleasure built up fast, and even more when Wyon dared to look down and saw the brown eyes shining bright with lust, looking at him.

Wyon panted breathless at the view of that delicious mouth sucking his very soul out of his cock, and the thought of that this was a King, the most beautiful King in the world and an enemy, who was giving him so much pleasure, was almost impossible to bear. Then the two fingers that had been rubbing arousing circles around his puckered hole finally breached him easily, and Wyon nearly lost it.

"Oh. Omar. I. Oh!"

Wyon struggled not to succumb to his orgasm, but the fingers inside him, which felt as odd as they did good, touched something that made the Captain see white hot light under his eyelids, and the pleasure exploded deep within him. He noticed Omar's throat muscles working around his member, drinking from him until he was empty.

Sated and panting, Wyon received Omar's mouth on his again with a deep moan.

(And those were EXACTLY 200 words. Sorry!)

What is one mistake you’ve made during your writing career that you’ve learned and grown from?

I took my first critics really at heart. I took them personally, like an attack to me and to my book. I hid, licked my wounds, and swore never to write a word again. Big mistakes all of them.

With the great help of other authors and dear friends I learned to LEARN from every single critic (and to ignore those that attack me personally, regardless of what I write or how I do it). I think this made me grow as a person as well as a writer. I cannot write to be liked by everybody; I just can hope to enjoy it when I read it back, and give it away so somebody might enjoy it as much as I did. Some would hate what I do. But some would find my work worth a constructive critic; they would point out my mistakes and help me not to make them again.

What quote are you most inspired by?

Oh dear. Every quote I read inspires me for something. I even have a “quotes” board on pinterest because they are SO amazing.

If I go back in time I can hear my philosophy teacher, in my last year at high school saying 18 years old Saura “The only limit in life is the one you put yourself. Push it, cross it, and you’ll be free”. I’ve never been able to be truly free, probably because I love to have limits to push, so I only push them a little. But that quote marked my life at college. Nothing could stop me!

And finally, for THE most important question of all: what kinds of dachshunds are the BEST kinds of dachshunds?

Oh right. I’m going to say the best kind is the one on a picture, because I’m TERRIFIED of dogs. Yep, even of dachshunds. Sorry about that!

When Duncan of the Gents leaves for the Crusades, he promises to return to his friend and lover, Adam Gordon, but he never does. Three years later, upon learning that Duncan died in an ambush, Adam travels to Jerusalem to join the Cross Knights, seeking revenge.

Wyon Eastman, Captain of the Cross Knights, meets Caliph Omar on the battlefield and in peace parliaments. But discovering the cruel, heartless infidel is human forces Wyon to struggle with growing romantic feelings and religious loyalties. 

As the English army sweeps across the Holy Land to conquer Jerusalem for the Christians, four men fight for true love in uncertain times.

About the Author:

SAURA UNDERSCORE (Saura_) was born under a dictatorial regime, only daughter of the typical tight-minded family. Taught to be revel at a progressive school, she never learned to cook, sew or spot-clean, but as soon as democracy arrived she participated in as many concentration defending women and gay rights as she could, which earned her several disinherit threatens from her father.

Her head has always been full of birds and dragons (at the same percentage), and she soon learned to set them free using her writing.

In her teenage stories you could always find a gay reference, but still Saura always thought that something was amiss. That Prince Charming didn’t have his whole heart on it. It wasn’t until she discovered Prince Charming and his squire at it on the barn of her mind, that she realized what exactly was the right thing to write.

She learned English and all about “slash” on the internet, and she travelled all around the world. She has friends from the six continents and it’s said she could travel the world finding one good friend to have lunch with, in every country.

Saura is married to a man that looked for her a second “perfect paring” when the first died away, has a kid and is allergic to dogs, cats and dust.

You can contact Saura Underscore at:

Tuesday, February 25, 2014


Today we're talking with m/m rom author, Mia Kerick, who has blown up the world of m/m YA in the last two years (in the very best way!) Make sure you enter the Rafflecopter giveaway at the end of the interview <3

Mia Kerick! Thank you so much for visiting my blog today and subjecting yourself to what will surely be one of your strangest and most eclectic interviews EVER. Don your favorite hat, and let's get this party started!

I am thrilled beyond measure to be visiting the wonderful blog of my close friend and colleague, author/awesome person, Raine O'Tierney. Raine, you've trudged right beside me in the mud through some difficult times as writers, sometimes you've even hoisted me up over your shoulder and carried me. A large part of my sanity (though it is always in question, I realize) exists thanks to you.

While you’ve written adult fiction, your passion seems to be for YA! What draws you to the world of young adult LGBT fiction?
I think it is very simple, really. I have a very young voice, as a writer. But this is directly related to the youthful voice talking to me inside my head—I am young-ish as a thinker, and, in general, as a person. I played with Barbie Dolls until I left for college, while eating Oreos I still find myself daydreaming about pop singers, and I fight a strong urge to wear tights and boots with ruffled rainbow-colored overall shorts at 49 years old.  I still need Clearasil. It seems that in many ways, I never matured beyond the age of a high school sophomore.  Doesn’t it make sense that I write like/for a YA, too?

How is writing teenage MCs different than writing adult MCs?
Oh, dear… here is where one of my problems lie (or is it lay?), at least according to some of my reviewers. I don’t find it very different at all. Age is just a number. Many parts of me are as much a twelve year old, as I was, let’s see, thirty-seven years ago when I was actually twelve. So when I write someone twenty-two, how different is his actual heart than that of someone who is seventeen? Yes, certainly, one can expect a twenty-something-year old to have more life experiences from which to draw, possibly their sexual interactions could be spicier, but inside the heart, aren’t we all basically teenagers when we are falling in love? Aren’t we as vulnerable as mere children when we put our hearts on the line? Aren’t we as daring as toddlers taking their first steps when we express our feelings aloud for the first time? Aren’t we dreamers, akin to preteens, when we think of a future with the one with whom we are so fascinated?

So, truthfully, crafting a teen MC is no different than crafting an adult MC because I believe that the experience I write of most, falling in love, involves the same risking of an innocent heart at fifteen as it does a fifty, or even at ninety-five years of age.

Tell us your deepest, most hidden writing dream!
I have an urge to write of spirituality. I want to write of a person who, similar to me, truly WANTS to follow the rules as have been prescribed to him by his organized religion, but cannot find it in his heart to let his dreams of love go, which is what he would have to do if he played by the rules. I want to illustrate his struggle, his conflict as to determining what exactly constitutes right and wrong, and his questioning of how love between two consenting adults, can ever be considered wrong? I am not quite ready to write this story yet, as I still struggle with these issues.

Your thoughts on libraries: GO!
An interesting question, which kind of reminds me of how I feel about churches.  Libraries, in my opinion, are as different in feeling as the people who staff them. I have been in many libraries that are DRY.  Civilized. Not at all daring. They are not places brimming with creativity. These libraries are not inviting, to me. I have also been in libraries in which I felt free and inspired and I never wanted to leave, among them The Boston Public Library and one of the smaller libraries at Boston College. There was a sense of limitlessness within these walls- anything could happen here.

What creates these differences in atmosphere, I firmly believe, are the attitudes of those who staff the libraries. I WANT TO COME TO RAINE’S LIBRARY!!!

What story have you always wanted to try to write, but have never before had the courage to tackle?
I will answer this generally.  My stories are limited by my life experiences. For example, I’d love to write a FBI thriller, but I fear writing about such a topic, where I have had no life experience. I fear that the reader will know that I am too far out of my comfort zone to be convincing.

A giant python is standing between you and you writing. Quite. Literally. Do you fight the python? Or give up writing forever?
I am not brave. Never have been and never will be. (I’m a lover, not a fighter- Michael Jackson)My first instinct in the face of the python would be to curl up in a corner and hope like hell he hadn’t seen me. However, that would be a mere reaction to fear and it wouldn’t last long. Because one of the most difficult parts of being me is that  while I am non-confrontational, but I possess strong conviction in my beliefs and my desires. Ultimately, I feel I would sidestep my way over to the giant python, telling him with every step how much I liked the shiny glow of his snakeskin, and mentioning the impressiveness of his dominant presence. Yeah, so maybe I would try to sweet talk the python…okay? That is pretty  much exactly what I’d do. After complimenting him a bit, I’d then try to get him to see things my way. I would attempt to convince him that he needed my stories more than the next giant python to come down the lane did.  And I’d keep on trying to convince him until he became so sick of hearing from me that he’d let me pass him by.

What is your superpower? What is your Kryptonite?
My superpower is my ability to empathize, most definitely. My sensitivity allows me to get close to people’s hearts, by talking, by writing.  My Kryptonite is confrontation. I will do nearly anything to avoid an emotional confrontation- an intense negative reaction.

You have 200 words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!)
           “But random good things can happen too.”
            I could tell by the baffled look on his face that he had no clue where I was going with this. And baffled was an unusual expression for Caleb.
            “Take this, for example: one morning I was trying to escape from the clutches of yet another babe who wasn’t right for me. In fact, the very thought of her made me cringe, right down to my toes. And on my way home, my truck fuckin’ rolled over and died.”
            Caleb nodded very slightly; I thought maybe he was catching on.
            “And before I knew it, a handsome, chivalrous dude was pushing my truck off the road, and then chatting me up in his Volvo wagon and buying me coffee.”
            I was pretty sure I saw a flicker of a smile cross those full lips of his.
            “A very random act of kindness…and it led to the strongest love I’ve ever felt.”
            His eyes suddenly filled with what had to be a gallon of water.
            “Random works both ways, babe.”
            Caleb stepped back over to the bed. “I’m going to try to get by this.”
            “I know you’re gonna try…and you’re gonna succeed. Just let me stand beside you while you do it.
            He exhaled loudly. “You can’t stay beside me. You have a job, a roommate, a family—a life.”
            I stood up so that we were pretty close to chest-to-chest. And then I looked down into his wide blue eyes. “You’ve become the biggest part of my life.” I spoke those words right into his eyes, hoping they’d find their way into his heart.  And honestly, I had no frigging idea how we were going to figure it out—I didn’t know a single thing about recovery from depression—but I did know that if he said he wanted me to try, I would do about anything in my power to stand beside him as he worked through this. “Nothing is cast in stone when it comes to us—there are no rules stating wherewe have to live or how we spend our time together or—just say that you’ll stick with me, and I know we can fix this.”
            Tentatively, Caleb reached his arms around my waist. “Stay with me, Bradley.” It was barely even a whisper, but still I’d heard it. “Stay, okay?”
            “There’s no other place I wanna be, Caleb.” Possessive, I enfolded him in my arms and I waited to see if he’d lift his face to mine for a kiss.
            He did.
(Raine's note: Mia Kerick is a rebel and refused to confine her swooning to 200 words. I let her 'cause she's cute.)

What is one writing MISTAKE you’ve made that you WOULDN’T change, and why?
I will have to go with the Brett Taylor dialect from Beggars and Choosers. I won’t say the dialect was a mistake, although I was hugely criticized  by readers and reviewers for using it. I will say that making it consistent, at the urge of the editors, was a mistake, because lazy speech isn’t completely consistent. Sometimes a lazy-speaker pronounces “ing” and sometimes it slips out as “in”. I wouldn’t change it, though, because IT WAS the essence of BRETT, and also because I learned so much from having used it. I would, however, think carefully before having a MC think and speak in dialect as Brett did.

Do you have a zombie survival plan?
I will stick close by my husband, Mr. Mia.  He is the one who I have always considered “most likely to win the Survivor TV show” of all the people I know. He just has skills, and confidence, and he LOVES ME SO MUCH. How can I go wrong with him?

What can we expect next from Mia Kerick?
The next book to come out will be in the early spring from Harmony Ink Press, another YA. It has a very controversial, for YA, theme and I am hoping that it will be well-accepted, and that readers will keep an open mind to the concept. I am currently working on an adult novel called Random Acts, about two older men, who, thanks to random acts of kindness and violence must rise to some very challenging occasions. In this one you will chuckle, and you may cry.

And finally, for THE most important question of all: what kinds of dachshunds are the BEST kinds of dachshunds.
In regard to dachshund, all I can say is that I have always been attracted to prominent noses. In men…in dogs… I will leave it at that.

One October morning, high school junior Bryan Dennison wakes up a different person—helpful, generous, and chivalrous—a person whose new admirable qualities he doesn’t recognize. Stranger still is the urge to tie a red sheet around his neck like a cape.

Bryan soon realizes this compulsion to wear a red cape is accompanied by more unusual behavior. He can’t hold back from retrieving kittens from tall trees, helping little old ladies cross busy streets, and defending innocence anywhere he finds it.

Shockingly, at school, he realizes he used to be a bully. He’s attracted to the former victim of his bullying, Scott Beckett, though he has no memory of Scott from before “the change.” Where he’d been lazy in academics, overly aggressive in sports, and socially insecure, he’s a new person. And although he can recall behaving egotistically, he cannot remember his motivations.

Everyone, from his mother to his teachers to his “superjock” former pals, is shocked by his dramatic transformation. However, Scott Beckett is not impressed by Bryan’s newfound virtue. And convincing Scott he’s genuinely changed and improved, hopefully gaining Scott’s trust and maybe even his love, becomes Bryan’s obsession.
With a foreword by C. Kennedy

About the Author:
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.

Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled men and their relationships, and she believes that sex has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press for providing her with an alternate place to stash her stories.
Mia is proud of her involvement with the Human Rights Campaign and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of marital equality. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.

Themes: Sweetness. Unconventional love, tortured/damaged heroes--only love can save them.

Author Links:


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Saturday, February 22, 2014

INTERVIEW: Kim Fielding

I'm delighted to introduce the utterly charming Kim Fielding--author of ten BAJILLION books! <3

Hello Kim and welcome to Home of the Sweetness <3 Thank you so much for subjecting yourself to the RANDOMNESS that is a Raine O'Tierney interview! Please don your best hat, and let's get started!

Regardless of reviews, good or bad, or even publication…What is your FAVORITE thing you’ve ever written and why?

Gah! That’s like asking me to pick my favorite child! Okay though. If I haveto pick, it’s a toss-up between two very different books: Bruteand The Tin Box. I’m especially in love with the guys in those books—Brute and Gray in the one and William and Colby in the other. After I finished writing those books, I missed the characters like lost friends. I especially love how much Brute and William transform as their stories unfold.

If you could go back in time and have a conversation with 13-year-old yourself right now, what would you say?

First off, I’d tell her that it’s perfectly okay to be a geek, and that she should stop worrying what other people think of her. And I’d tell her to stop listening to that voice in her head that tells her she can’t do things. I’m pretty good at ignoring that voice nowadays, but it took decades! Oh, and I’d tell her to stop mooning over that boy who she doesn’t even speak to—she’s going to meet the love of her life in a couple of years. And when she’s 16 and the Ramones come to town for a concert? She should try harder to convince her parents to let her go—even though it’s on a school night—because she’s never going to get another chance to see them.

What is your biggest, most wildest, most extreme writing dream or goal? No dream is too outlandish.

New York Times bestseller! More realistically, I want to be able to quit the day job and write fulltime. I’d love to spend my days traveling the world and writing.

Your thoughts on libraries: GO!

Heaven. One of my earliest memories is my parents taking me to the public library. I was allowed to check out three books, and afterward we’d go out for ice cream. Where I live now, the library is old and way too small and always smells like sweat and piss, but I like it anyway. It’s always crowded, which is a pretty cool thing, really.

Describe yourself using song lyrics.

I stink at this. But I’ll give it a try:

I wanna be a paperback writer. I’m so tired of the USA. There’s a blaze of light in every word. It’s just my imagination, running away with me. Baby did a bad bad thing. I taught the law and the law won (yes, I know that’s not how it really goes. This is my version).

How come all your covers are so dang gorgeous?!

Am I lucky with cover art or what? I love that Dreamspinner Press gives authors so much input into cover design. The very talented artists take my ideas and go about three steps better. I don’t even know which is my favorite, although I have to admit that I have a framed, poster-size Venetian Maskscover on my wall.

I’ve also self-published three novels, and I made two of the covers (the third was made by a skilled friend). For my novel Equipoise I knew I wanted the cover to show an old natural-fiber rope tied in knots. I spent two hours at Hyde Street Pier in San Francisco, taking a couple of hundred photos of ropes. I ended up having to explain to an amused park ranger what the heck I was doing. And I ended up using almost the last picture I took.

What is your superpower? What is your Kryptonite?

I have two (related) superpowers! I can multitask my way to world domination and I can write nearly anywhere, amid nearly any degree of chaos (a necessary skill in my world). Carbs are my Kryptonite, I’m afraid.

You have 200 words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!)

Caleb leaned forward against the fridge, so exhausted he couldn’t muster the energy to open it. He barely twitched when warm breath puffed against his nape. But then a hand unbuttoned his trousers, slid the zipper down, and squeezed inside his briefs. A strong arm wrapped around his torso, urging him to shift his weight backward where a solid, bare body waited to support him.

“Long day, baby?” The words were more gravel than whisper.

Caleb moaned a response, lolled his head back onto a shoulder, thrust his hips slightly forward. The palm wrapped around his rapidly hardening cock was big and hot, the skin slightly rough with calluses.

Whiskers rasped against Caleb’s cheek and then soft lips latched onto his neck, just above the pulse point. A heartbeat thudded against his back, the rhythm steady, and he smelled coffee and freshly cut grass. The grip on his cock tightened just a little and Caleb bucked into the fist.

“Gonna make you come,” said the tickle in his ear. And then the hand sped up and teeth gnawed at his neck and he did come—long and hard.

When his legs were steady again, Caleb turned around.

Nobody was there.

What is one mistake you’ve made during your writing career that you’ve learned and grown from?

Not starting earlier. I’ve written short stories for my entire life but never tried to get them published. And for some reason I was convinced I couldn’t write a novel. Then in November 2009 I decided to give NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) a go. I’m currently getting my 11thnovel ready to submit to the publisher, so I guess it’s safe to say I can write a novel.

What is the most RANDOM thing to ever inspire you?

A testicle festival. A town near where I live holds one annually, and although I’ve never attended, I thought the idea was funny. I ended up writing a story called “Tyler Wong Has a Ball” (it’s in the Don’t Try This at Homeanthology).

And finally, for THE most important question of all: what kinds of dachshunds are the BEST kinds of dachshunds?

Saint Bernard dachshunds. Sorry, but I’m a big dog kind of girl.

Fiscal analyst Mike Carlson is good with spreadsheets and baseball stats. He doesn’t believe in fate, true love, or fantasy. But then a fertility goddess whisks him away to another world. A promise has been broken, and if Mike is ever to return to California—and his comfortable if lonely life—he must complete a pilgrimage to the shrines of a death goddess.

A humiliating event convinces Mike to hire a guard to accompany him, and hunky Goran is handy enough with a sword, if a little too liberal with his ale. A man with no home and no family, Goran is deeper than he first appears. As Mike learns more about Goran, his disbelief wavers and his goals become less clear. Contending with feuding gods, the challenges of the journey, and his growing attraction to Goran, Mike faces a puzzle far harder to solve than simple rows of numbers.

Pilgrimage is available in print and e-book versions from Dreamspinner Press , Amazon, and all major booksellers.

About the Author:
Kim Fielding is very pleased every time someone calls her eclectic. She has migrated back and forth across the western two-thirds of the United States and currently lives in California, where she long ago ran out of bookshelf space. She’s a university professor who dreams of being able to travel and write full time. She also dreams of having two perfectly behaved children, a husband who isn’t obsessed with football, and a house that cleans itself. Some dreams are more easily obtained than others.
Kim Fielding can be found at her blog:
On Twitter: @KFieldingWrites
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