Thursday, July 31, 2014

Throwback Thursday Tune

Blondie. Just say the name and the lovely Debbie Harry springs to mind. I always enjoyed this band and their music.

Were you into Blondie?

Monday, July 28, 2014

Tuesday Tales - Right

Welcome to another edition of Tuesday Tales, and more White Moon, Yellow Leaves, a M/F contemporary romance.

 This week we`ll see how Dana reacts to Jonah`s rather risqué statement.

Our word this week is 'Right'. As always, all comments are greatly appreciated. Make sure to check out all the Tuesday Tales authors great contributions.








White Moon, Yellow Leaves

       
*~*~*





            I was stunned. Speechless. Staggered.

            Did the man really just shake his claws at me and call me a cougar? Should I be flattered or offended?

            Jonah lowered his necklace, his head tipping to the left to get a better look at me.

            “It was a joke." He frowned, a small morning breeze lifting long black tendrils that had slithered free of his braid. “Not like a funny joke but more of a sexy joke. Yeah, this is going well for the red man.” He looked decidedly uncomfortable.

            Rhett scampered past, his hat filled with something. The child opened fire, riddling us with acorns. I tossed my arms over my head. Jonah tumbled from the rock as if he were gut-shot moaning and rolling about on the mast at our feet, sending my son into peals of boyish laughter.

            “Remember me fondly…beautiful,” Jonah gasped dramatically, bits of leaf stuck to his hair. He wheezed theatrically, convulsed, then died.  He just called me beautiful.

Even if I had been mad, my anger would have floated off with the sounds of Rhett`s giggles.

            “You really shouldn`t throw acorns at people,” I chastised my boy as he crept up on the good-looking ‘corpse’. “Someone could have been hit in the eye.”

            Rhett wasn`t listening. He and his sidekick, Hopalong Poopbottom, were now prodding and sniffling at Jonah. When the man shouted then sat up, both boy and dachshund flew in reverse, Rhett landing on his rump while the dog ran off to hide behind a tree and bark furiously. Jonah ruffled the boys hair then got to his feet.

“You stink!” Rhett sneered, his pride badly dented.

“No, you just fell for an old trick,” Jonah replied, swatting the forest litter from his backside. I got far too engrossed in the slapping of that taut bottom. My son blowing Jonah a raspberry ripped me from the sight. Just in time too, for the saliva was beginning to pool in my mouth. “Don`t ever approach the dead man. You never watch horror movies?”

I blinked at Jonah to clear my singed eyes.

“No,” Rhett scowled. “Mom won`t let me watch scary stuff.” Hands went into pockets, shoulders slumped, and bottom lip came out. Yep, he had the poor, pitiful child look down pat.

“Well, maybe we can work on her to lighten up a bit.” Jonah patted the boy on the back. “We better get moving. It`ll take about an hour to walk the whole path. I have to get the rest of the water heaters flushed for the influx after the holiday.”

“Jonah?” Rhett inquired, stuffing his hat back onto his head still filled with acorns. Jonah looked down at him. I was on my feet and stretching right then left.  “We got a huge turkey. Why don`t you and your grandpa come eat Thanksgiving with us? Then I can tell my class about eating Thanksgiving with real Indians.”

I jerked upright and gaped at my son.

“Well, I guess that depends on what your mom and Mrs. Jo say,” Jonah replied tactfully.

“Mom`ll say yes. She likes you!” the child announced then ran off to locate the chipmunk chipping at us rudely. I flushed from my toes to my hairline when Jonah slowly brought those incredible eyes back to me.

Not knowing what, if anything, I should say I opted to giggle like a lake loon and head down the trail, Jonah`s soft chuckles following behind. He caught up with ease and thankfully had enough discretion, or intelligence, not to make my embarrassment worse. We walked in comfortable silence, enjoying the wind coming to life, the soft sound of leaves pattering downward, the sharp barks of grey squirrels as we passed, and the warm calls of chickadees and titmice greeting the bright November sun. Rhett and Leopold stayed slightly ahead of us, the boy stopping frequently to poke amid the leaf litter for treasures, the dog it appeared doing much the same.

As I walked I ruminated. I always found fresh air to be a hell of a mind stimulant. Walking through shifting beams of early morning sunshine I chewed on Jonah. Not literally of course, although if I said I didn`t want to I`d be a bald-faced liar. But, just because I wanted to nibble on him didn`t mean I should. As much as I was shocked about it, he truly did seem to be attracted to me, that ten year gap in ages apparently not a concern to him.

So, if Jonah was willing to overlook my advanced age, my wide ass, my divorced state, and my son as barriers to a possible flirtation why should I be balking? God knows I could use an ego booster, and being courted by a stud ten years my junior certainly qualified. Why was I so conflicted? Fear, I realized with shame. I was afraid to put my heart out there again. Rhick had not only trampled my heart, he had danced the flamenco on it. The man needed a swift kick to his castanets.

I was so engrossed in my' internal fritter frying', as Aunt Jo calls it, I didn`t realize we were coming back down to Mud Puppy Lake until we stepped from the tree line. I paused, stunned by the sight that greeted us. Fifteen Canadian geese were resting on the water. There was a moment, brief yes, but a single moment of absolute harmony as waterfowl glided gracefully across a living looking glass, their grey, black and white bodies sending ripples of autumn color across the lake. The moment lasted only briefly then the wild birds saw us. Their wings beat the tarn. Their honks filled the chilly air. They rose upward noisily then banked south, falling eventually back into a tight V to continue their trip to warmer climes.

 Herr Poopbottom found his nerve and raced to the water`s edge, barking at the flock that were now mere specks against a brilliant blue background. I turned to look at Rhett. His cheeks were red from exertion and cold, but his eyes were wide with amazement. Then I looked up at Jonah.

“We`d be pleased to have you and Andy join us Thanksgiving Day,” I said. He smiled then inclined his head.

“I`ll pass the invitation along,” the man replied. “Looks like we got back right in time,” he noted. Aunt Jo-Jo was toddling along the thin dirt path. She waved and we all waved back, except Leopold, who streaked off to greet his long-lost mistress.

We parted ways then, Jonah heading off to get the hunting cabins ready for their owners, Rhett and I walking the perimeter of Mud Puppy Lake hand in hand.






Copyright 2012 ©by V.L. Locey

*~*~*

Click on the link below to return to the Tuesday Tales main blog for more great reads from the talented authors of Tuesday Tales.


The authors of Tuesday Tales will be going on hiatus for the month of August for some rest and relaxation. We`ll be back the first week of September, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, with more tales for you to enjoy. When we return we`ll see just how things go with Dana and Jonah and that Thanksgiving dinner. 

Until then, enjoy your summer, and we`ll see you in September. 





Sunday, July 27, 2014

What`s The Buzz?

It`s that time again. Yep, time to lay out what`s up, new, exciting, or just needing to be done. I know a lot of authors have mailing lists and/or newsletters, and that is a super idea that I wish I had the time for. Aside from the fact that I wouldn`t know how to lay out a monthly newsletter, I just don`t have the spare moments to do so. I`m rather fond of my blog, so I figured why not just save myself the aggravation and tell my friends, fans, and family what`s cooking here. I`ll even throw in some nice pictures of pretty things. Here`s one:



Okay, now that we have the gratuitous picture of Henrik out of the way, let`s see do a quick run through of what`s been done, is planned, or is being worked on for August.

Last month I wrapped up the sixth Wildcats book, Final Shifts. It`s now sitting in my files, where I`ll let it rest for a week or two. Then I`ll go back in to start doing first round edits and revisions before I submit it to Secret Cravings. I also wrote a short erotic IR romance titled Tumble Dry, which came in at slightly over 9K, that is now being edited before submission. I`m hoping to send that off in August to SCP for their open Weekend Getaways call.

For August, there`s a new M/M hockey romance that I`ll more than likely begin working on. It`s only a novella, so I should be able to get that in the can before the end of the month. It`s the last contracted book for Ellora`s Cave, so once that one is done I`ll have all the books promised to Ellora`s Cave completed. Huge sigh of relief for being ahead of schedule!

I`m so excited to have some new M/M romances coming out. It`s been a little while and I do love the genre so. My gay romance fans will have plenty to read over the upcoming months so keep a sharp lookout for new release announcements. The four books from Ellora`s Cave are all M/M romances: one a geeky tale about comic nerds with a dark, erotic side, and three hockey romances.



There is also the follow-up for Heir Apparent to begin fiddling with. Hopefully Cam and Jacobi`s romance will be chosen to be part of the next cancer charity hockey anthology. I was thrilled to be a part of Seduced by the Game, so perhaps we`ll get the rest of that story in the next anthology. If not, I may get some cover art done, get it formatted, and put it up as a free read. Whichever happens, I am incredibly proud of that story, and the good reviews it pulled in. Being the only M/M work in an anthology filled with M/F romances was kind of scary. Would readers balk? Some did, as I knew they would. But the majority were super kind, embracing gay love just as warmly as they did straight love.

Lots of good M/M news huh?  I do love my man love.

Shifting Sands, a fantasy shifter short story, will be in the Dawg Days anthology from Torquere Press. That releases on August 20th. Previous anthologies I`ve been in with Torquere have given readers the option to buy the anthology, or the single stories. I would imagine Dawg Days will run the same way, but I`ll have to double check on it then let you know.



Once I get the final M/M hockey story done for Ellora`s Cave, I may begin working on a secret project that I hope to pitch to Secret Cravings. I think it`s an awesome idea, as does my hockey guru/beta reader Lydia. Let`s hope the publisher thinks it is as well. Keep your fingers crossed gang!

Speaking of my good buddy, Lydia, she and I are working to figure out another fun project that I hope a few of you will sign up for when it`s time. We`re kind of stumbling along with things, since this is a first for both of us, but that`s part of the fun, right? Bumbling along with buddies as you work out the kinks. I sure think so. This whole author gig is a lonely one for the most part, so when I can involve some people that I care about that makes the solitary aspect easier to handle when it`s just me and the laptop.

I think that may be it for August. *scratches chin while thinking* Well, I did submit a short story for an erotic sci-fi anthology call that had August as the deadline. If my racy M/M tale is accepted, I`ll he shouting about it from atop the cow barn, I`m sure. Other than that, I think that`s pretty much it for the next four or five weeks.

Thanks for dropping by. If I missed anything that you may have wanted covered or answered, feel free to drop me a line in the comments section. I really do love hearing from you guys and gals, and always welcome your ideas and thoughts on my work, so don`t be shy. If you`d like to see something, or want to know about a certain book or series, just ask! One more pretty picture before we go! Who loved this man on Sex and the City? *Waves hand frantically in the air*




See you in September! 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Throwback Thursday Tune

Let`s step back to the days when black and white TV was the norm, a gallon of gas cost a quarter, and the Rat Pack was the coolest of the cool.( In this clip Johnny Carson was standing in for Joey Bishop.)

Who is your favorite Rat Pack member?


Monday, July 21, 2014

Tuesday Tales - Bloom

Welcome to another edition of Tuesday Tales, and more White Moon, Yellow Leaves, a M/F contemporary romance.

 This week Dana and her son join Jonah for a walk through the woods that surround Mud Puppy Lake.

Our word this week is 'Bloom'. As always, all comments are greatly appreciated. Make sure to check out all the Tuesday Tales authors great contributions.




White Moon, Yellow Leaves

*~*~*




           

            Jonah and Rhett were lakeside. I ambled over to them. Jonah was trying to teach Rhett how to skip rocks. It saddened me that the boy had to rely on a relative stranger to do things his father should be doing.

            “So you like football or baseball better?” I heard Jonah asking as I walked up behind them, my hands crammed into the pockets of my heavy fleece jacket. “Try again." Jonah drew back and released his rock. It skipped several times, making the pristine reflections on the still lake bounce.

            “I can`t help it,” the boy replied, his own attempt at rock-skipping ending in a single plunk. “My rock keeps sinking.”

Jonah laughed. It was a rich, warm sound that bounced off the oak and elm. “Hold it like this.” He then showed the lad the proper grip again. Leopold chose that moment to explode from the woods. His barks of greeting had the guys once more finding me behind them.

“Hey gents,” I said then smiled. Jonah smiled back. Rhett threw the rock as far as he could then ran after the never-tiring dachshund. Around the lake boy and dog went. I was exhausted just watching them. “I`m ready for our hike.”

Jonah nodded and we set off, stopping to wait by the lone dock for boy and dog to finish their lap and join us. Rhett would sleep like a fallen tree tonight, which would save me being kicked in the back until the wee hours.

The four of us began the hike by walking behind the line of camps. The grouse path was really nothing more than a heavily used deer path. Why it`s called a grouse path I don`t know. Over the years humans have made the deer path a part of a meandering trail that circles the lake. The path increases gradually at first, levels out, climbs again, and then really takes off. If you`re an intrepid sort you can try to follow the path the deer made up the rocky slope. I`ve never been off the path though and didn`t intend to start now. I`d get enough cardio staying on the lane hunters and weekend hikers used.

We walked in companionable silence for about fifteen minutes. Rhett and Leopold were finally beginning to show signs of fatigue when we huffed our way to the first rise. My son fell face first into the dewy leaves, the dog collapsed at his side, tongue lolling.

“Sweet Mary and Joseph,” I panted, slapping my hands to my knees. Jonah chuckled breathlessly. “I need to do this more often I guess,” I added.

“It gets better,” he teased as he walked past me. “Let`s grab a few breaths."

 I straightened. Jonah had found a rock formation that looked down on the roofs of the cabins. I shuffled over, my hiking boots burrowing up wet leaves that released that damp smell of forest loam.

“I`d have to say ‘better’ is a rather subjective word, Mr. Big Deer.”

“True.” Jonah patted the rock next to where he was seated. I dropped down on it gratefully then took in the scenery while my breathing slowed. The air was still and the trees were dropping their offerings slowly. A sugar maple to my right let go of one of the few remaining leaves on its boughs. It fluttered down and I caught it. The ends were dried and curled but the middle held a tint of gold yet. I studied the veins, cradling the leaf carefully.

“When I was a child I used to think that God had gilded the leaves with gold,” I said. “I think I`ve always preferred the yellow leaves for that reason.”

“I always liked the red leaves myself,” Jonah interjected. I turned my hand over. The leaf joined the hundreds,  perhaps thousands, of others on the ground. “When I was a kid Andy told us why the trees turned red in the fall.” He glanced over at me. “Would you like to hear the story?”

I nodded for him to tell the tale then called my son over. Once Rhett was situated on my thigh Jonah began speaking.

 “Once there was a mighty bear that was making trouble for a village. He would circle the village, scaring away or eating the animals the people survived on. Hunting parties were sent out to kill the bear, as the people were close to starving. The hunters searched for days and days, following the tracks closely. One day they came upon the bear and shot him with arrows but it did not kill the bear, his skin was too thick and the arrows couldn`t pierce it. The bear grew angry and killed most of the warriors.

The survivors returned to the village and told their story. Party after party was sent out. None could slay the great bear. One night, as the bear stalked around the village, three brothers had the same dream. In the dream they saw themselves tracking and killing the great bear. They set off to find the bear and free the people from starvation."

             I peeked at my son. He was spellbound.

"They tracked the great bear for days and days until they were at the end of the earth. The bear saw them coming and leaped into the sky. The three warriors followed the great bear into the heavens. The bear was slow and tired because his winter sleep was coming soon. The three hunters were able to get close to the drowsy bear and shoot their arrows into his body. His blood drips from his body and changes the leaves in fall, but, he does not die. He always gets away,” Jonah explained to my wide-eyed son. “Great Bear becomes invisible for a time, but he reappears in the skies as the Big Dipper with the three brothers still chasing him.”

“That`s a great legend,” I said. Rhett bobbed his head in silent appreciation. Jonah lowered his head theatrically then thanked us warmly.

“Someday I`m going to track and kill a bear!” My son, who had sat still  for a whole two minutes, exclaimed, leaving my lap to find a stick to slay something with. Leopold lifted his brown head from his paws, wagged his tail and leaped to his feet to aid my boy in imaginary bear slaying.

“And there goes your attentive audience,” I laughed and waved at the departing twosome, my hand coming back to rest on my thigh.

“Ah well, I had him in the palm of my hand for a couple of minutes,” the man chuckled. The aforementioned palm moved over to rest on top my hand. The smile fell from my face. My head spun to the right. Eyes as dark as night bore into mine, sending my heart into a funny sort of dubstep kind of rhythm. Pink bloomed on my cheeks, the heat of embarrassment and desire searing my nose.

“Jonah, what are you doing?” I asked after swallowing. I did not pull my hand away. His was warm and big and calloused.

“I`m being bold and holding your hand,” he answered matter-of-factly.

“I`m ten years older than you.” I had to say it. It needed to be out there in front of his face. He leaned over to the left just a bit and pawed into the front of his coat with his free hand. I sat there like a bump, scared to turn my hand over and grip his yet also scared that he would let go. From the inside of his shirt he pulled a necklace. It was beautifully crafted and decidedly masculine. Five claws were strung on a thin strip of rawhide. Between the wickedly curved claws were silver and turquoise beads.

“Do you know what these are?” he asked, giving the necklace a rattle. I shook my head. “They`re puma claws,” he clarified, mischief tweaking up the corner of his mouth. “I killed the cat when I was down in Florida working on my uncle`s sheep ranch last summer. She started killing livestock, then attacked the child of one of my uncle`s employee`s. Took five dogs and ten hours but we treed her.”

“So you`re trying to show me that…”

“I`m not scared to tangle with a cougar, Dana.”

*~*

The story Jonah shared with Dana and Rhett is just one of many wonderful Seneca legends. If you are interested in learning more about the Seneca legends and folklore, you can check out the following pages:

Seneca Legends
Copyright 2012 ©by V.L. Locey

*~*~*

Click on the link below to return to the Tuesday Tales main blog for more great reads from the talented authors of Tuesday Tales.


See you next week!


Campus Cravings Cover Reveal!


I love, love, love being able to share in cover reveals! Today we get a peek at the cover of Campus Cravings, a new boxed set from some wonderful M/M authors. Enjoy!








Welcome to Cathia University, where school is in session! Nine of today's hottest gay romance authors have crafted brand-new interrelated novellas celebrating everything wonderful about college, with over 200,000 words featuring sophisticated professors, sexy teaching assistants, ambitious grad students, and spirited undergraduates, all looking for the same thing: an A+ in true love.

Annabeth Albert: Winning Bracket 
Cassandra Carr: The Eloquent Jock
Dalton Diaz: Lesson Learned
Mia Downing: Switching Leads
Whitley Gray: Artistic Endeavor
Bianca Sommerland: Solid Education
KyAnn Waters: Private Lessons
LA Witt: Did Somebody Order a Pizza?
Sara York: The Dust Of Everyday Life





Add Campus Cravings to your Goodreads to-be-read-list here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22738703-campus-cravings

Sunday, July 20, 2014

It All Began With Bryan Singer

While having a morning visit with my dear friend and hockey guru, Lola/Lydia, last week, an idea was brought up. Actually, it was a rather big bunch of ideas. Really interesting ones as well, but that`s not surprising coming from this particular woman. She and I were discussing something rather secretive yet, but during this plotting and planning meeting, she said that she thought women of a certain age, which she and I are, might find it interesting to hear how I found myself starting a new career at this stage of my life.



I had a doubt or two. I mean, I`m not exactly exciting. I herd chickens, chase geese, read comic books, and get far too excited over Swedish goalies and Norwegian wingers. Who would want to read about that? Lola disagreed. She tossed out a lot of other great suggestions for blog posts, so, trusting in her implicitly, I decided to follow her advice. Lola has yet to steer me wrong. So, how did I, a stay-at-home mom on a hillside farm in the boondocks of Pennsylvania decide to be an author as she approached fifty? Well, it all started with Bryan Singer.

Actually, as I look back on things, my brain has always been the brain of a story-teller, I just didn`t know it. For as long as I can remember, I would have scenarios running in my head. These scenarios would always come to the fore when I was trying to go to sleep, or that was when they were most noticeable. Some nights I would lay there for hours, scenes and dialog and other assorted things bouncing around inside my head. Being kept awake like this was not fun, but it was how things had been since I was a teenager. My mother, when I would tell her about this odd affliction, would say I had an overactive imagination, or a guilty conscious, then look at me with one eyebrow arched.

So, that was me, rolling and tossing for sixty minutes, trying to let the stories inside my head play out so I could sleep. That went on for many years. Marriage and a child didn`t stop the cinema reels in my head. It`s kind of fascinating, for what it`s worth, that since I started writing daily, I now go to bed, close my eyes, and fall asleep almost instantly. The writer`s brain is an amazing, and damn scary, place at times.

One day I heard tell that an X-Man movie was in the works. Let me tell you I was one happy comic fan! I waited breathlessly for the movie, as many a Marvel fan did. It would be the first time we would see Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, the man that is tattooed onto my left bicep. Wolverine, that is, not Hugh.

Unfortunately, I was not happy with how Mr. Singer handled my favorite mutant. Not at all. Nope. I was downright miffed to be honest. So miffed that a few weeks after seeing the film, and hearing the complaints of other comic fans, I decided to take matters into my own hands. If Hollywood wouldn`t give me a film that represented my hero, then I`d write my own darn story.

And I did.



It was terrible. Really. Terrible. The work was loaded with grammatical errors, lacked paragraph breaks, and was overflowing with things that dangle and misplaced commas, when I even used a comma. I still hate commas, but we won`t go there. It`s too dark to speak of. But this ghastly first story stirred something. It brought something to life, fanned an ember, birthed a muse. It was through that first fan fiction, written because Mr. Singer hosed up my mutants, that I found the joy of writing. Or, perhaps it finally found me.

Whatever the case, I spent two or three years writing only fan fiction. I loved it. I wrote tons of tales! I could not stop. I still pen fan fiction when I can, which is not often, sadly. I made some wonderful friends, and learned a great deal during my fan fiction years. I toyed with submitting stories to Marvel, and was encouraged to do so by the other fans who read my work. I never did. It is incredibly hard, nigh onto impossible, to get a story into the hands of an editor at Marvel or DC. Then Marvel stopped taking unsolicited submissions. That was pretty much the nail of the coffin for that idea. What now?

I was kind of lost for a time. I had all these ideas. What could I do with them? I had plenty of time. My daughter was now in school. Mister worked all day. It was me, the farm, and that overactive imagination. I wanted to do more than just fan fiction, but what? How? Fate, as it tends to do, gave me a nudge in the right direction one chilly October day. I was at a book fest in town, gathering up bags of gently used books, when I spied a flyer on the wall. It was an invitation to participate in a new writer`s group forming at the local library.

Everything changed the minute I walked into the library that first time. But that`s a story for another day, and another post. So this is how it began for me. I suppose I should thank Bryan Singer for making that movie, but yeah, I just can`t. I can thank him for being the catalyst that shoved me into writing that first story, so, here we go . . .

Thanks, Bryan.