Friday, July 20, 2018

What I've Been Reading - Consorting with Dragons by Sera Trevor

I've gone through so many gay fantasy romance audiobooks lately that I'm worried some day I'll have listened to them all. Every single one. Then what? 

Then I try out a new to me author with a new release. 

It strikes me as odd that I don't write much fantasy romance when I love it so. Maybe it's time to write another.  Or I can just enjoy the lovely results of someone else's efforts. 

Like Consorting with Dragons by Sera Trevor. 

Wow. Just what I needed, when I needed it. The evil three hour daily commute means I go through audiobooks like nobody's business, and am rapidly burning through Audible's m/m romance fantasy catalog.

Just when I thought I'd read them all, here come this little gem!

New to me author, but the blurb offered many elements that made it a must read:
1) Main character from humble means needs a wealthy husband
2) Hints of a quirky personality
3) Dragons
4) Magic

And let's not forget the narrator who brought the characters to wonderful life.

Lovely story about a man who isn't perfect and is content not to be, tossed into a world he doesn't understand, but who does the best he can. And..... he falls in love with a man, not the king. In fact, for him, "king" is a drawback. But through it all, the hero's kind heart makes him shine among a sea of false jewels.

Angsty moments were balanced with laugh out loud funny ones, such as our hero Jasen babbling on about riding the queen of Grumhul's pet pig. For some reason Carol Burnett's Princess and the Pea skit came to mind whenever Jasen waxed poetic about the swamps of home. World building at its best!

I thoroughly enjoyed this story, and wouldn't mind sitting on the sidelines taking in a rousing game of mud ball.

The only negative is that this author doesn't have any other books on audio that I could find, and the evil commute is still out there.
 

I thoroughly enjoyed this one, and highly recommend it. 

Sunday, July 1, 2018

The Office, Part II

It's been a while since I've posted, but the evil day job has been more evil than usual, and I'm getting over a bout of sickness that left me bedridden for a few days.

But....

I'm back, with more pictures to share of the new office Bear is making for me. Remember how the shell looked? Well, it's changed a lot in two weeks.


The heating/cooling unit being wired in. 


Insulation! Yay!


Outlets being installed. 


Selecting paneling at the local home improvement store. 


Installing windows.


Windows are installed!

I have no idea when the office will be complete, and when your love is creating something for you in their spare time, well, whenever is fast enough. 

I can't wait to move in my office furniture! 

Saturday, June 16, 2018

New Office

Some of you may know that the romance author found her own romance and married last year. Cramming two houses worth of stuff into one didn't leave a whole lot of room for me to have an office.

After much planning and considering, the world's most supportive author spouse and I purchased a 10 foot by 20 foot shed, which we're fixing up to serve the purpose. I'll post pictures of the work in progress.

The starting point


 Left view
 Right view
Back view
Loading up on supplies at Lowe's

So far the place now has heating/air conditioning, temporary power, and several things bought, waiting to be installed. Stay tuned. This is a work in progress that I'm eager to see completed. 

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Status Update - Suspicion (Diversion - Book 7)

At long last I'm in the home stretch for Suspicion, but the process isn't over by a long shot. I've drafted, fine tuned, and have sent the file out to first round crit partners. They will be brutal but honest and help me polish the rough edges off the story.

After that? Second round crits, editing, proofing, formatting, advertising, and finally, publication.

I've ordered the cover from the super-talented L.C. Chase, and hope to have that soon to show you.

Only two more books remain to finish this story arc. I have a feeling this won't be goodbye, because Bo and Lucky have grown on me too much to let them go.

So, you Bo and Lucky fans, stay tuned!

Oh! L.C. is also working on some marketing materials so I can get Bo and Lucky swag together for this year's GRL in October.

Friday, May 18, 2018

What's in a Word - Keeping Your Characters in Charge, or Not Letting Body Parts Wander Off on Their Own

Lately I've been going through a lot of books, some bestsellers, some not, and some extremely enjoyable. But let's face it, everyone has their pets peeves, the thing no one else seems to notice but what yanks you right out of the story.

For me it's autonomous body parts, as anyone I beta for can vouch for. You know, when body parts act on their own while the character sits back and does nothing.

"His hand gripped the phone." No, he gripped the phone.

"Her hand turned the steering wheel." No, her hand has no power on its own. She turned the steering wheel.

When this is really obvious is during sex scenes. Even if it never occurs anywhere else in a book, some authors tend to break people down into parts during intimacy. It distances me from the characters and action, and makes me wonder if it's the author's way of distancing themselves, if they're not entirely comfortable writing sex.

When we're reading, we are supposed to fully immerse in story, become the character, so "His lips kissed..." adds distance, whereas "he kissed" not only keeps the protag in charge of his body parts, it helps us be the character.

Don't get me wrong, my early efforts have examples of this, coaxed out of me (sometimes forcefully) by editors. Which might be why I notice so much.

But when all is said and done, "he" is a lot easier to write than "his hand" and keeps the person in control of his body.

The one that gives me bad visuals is "my eyes flew to the window." Ouch.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Preorder for GRL 2018

Those of you who are attending GRL and wish to pre-order books, you can do so now at the following link, cleverly labeled:

Preorder Form

Friday, May 11, 2018

What I'm Reading -- The Consumption of Magic by TJ Klune

Witty dialogue meets perfect narrator and equals one heck of an experience. I've laughed, I've cried, and I've replayed favorite parts of this story again. 

While The Lightning Struck Heart and A Destiny of Dragons were amazing, there is something about the third installment of TJ Klune's Tales From Verania series that just strikes a chord with me. Maybe it's because I've come to love the characters so much, and missed them while waiting for the third book to go audio, maybe it's because I really need to laugh while going through a tough time. Whatever the reason, Sam, Ryan, Justin, Tiggy, Gary, Kevin, and all the rest have landed squarely in my heart. 

I have yet to finish the story, but am enjoying the ride. 

Each character is so well-fleshed out, and some of the dialogue, how the friends speak to each other, had caused coffee spews on my way to work. I can't wait for the end of the workday to hear more. 

I'm also caught up in the world-building. What an awesome place Verania is. I've recently realized that I'd gotten away from fantasy books, when in fact, fantasy was my first reading love. Swords, knights, dragons, wizards, and a six inch tall naked man. What's not to love? 

And Sam. Oh, Sam. How entertaining he is, whether he's coming up with the best idea ever (or worst disaster) or sassing off to oldest and most revered wizard ever, he is one heck of a lot of fun. 

I'm sure to suffer major book hangover once the story ends. Although I've only written a few lines here, I'll add more once I finish the book. 

Or I'll start the series all over again.