Anne Brooke, Wilde City Press

“Taking a Chance” Is Short, Sexy, And Satisfying



“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do… Explore. Dream. Discover.” — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.


Holy Sexapalooza Batman! Taking A Chance was relatively short, only about 11,000 words. I think approximately 8,100 of them were sex scenes. The sex was really well written, but it sometimes felt like porn with a litte plot thrown in for good measure.

Alan is waiting outside a restaurant for his blind date Timothy to show up. The two have spoken on-line and Timothy is interested in exploring the submissive side of himself with the Dominant side of Alan. While Alan is waiting, Benjamin happens by. He finds Alan sexy and alluring, and since he is a part-time actor and feels he can play any role he needs to, to get to know Alan better, he approaches him. Alan assumes that Benjamin is Timothy, so Benjamin goes with it, and they begin their date.
Continue reading

Standard
Anne Brooke, Charlie Harding, Clare London, Eric Arvin, Ethan Stone, Ewan Creed, Geoffrey Knight, Hank Edwards, J.P. Barnaby, Lloyd Meeker, Owen Keehnen, Patrick Darcy, Pelaam, Shae Connor, Wilde City Press

Your 4th Of July is About To Get All Kinds Of Wilde!

wcp_4julysale_fbk

Summer is all about fun, adventure and making great holiday memories. What do the Wilde City authors get up to? Find out when they were asked about some of their favorite summer traditions … past, present, and future.

Help Wilde City Press celebrate the start of summer and July 4th. Enjoy 25% of your entire cart from Wednesday July 3rd through Sunday July 7th with the coupon code: WildeFreedom.

 

What is your favorite July 4th / Independence Day memory or tradition?

 

Shae Connor

My favorite July 4th tradition is putting the watermelon in the pool.

See, my extensive extended family mostly lives in and around a small Georgia town, and the main gathering place for as long as I can remember has been the house of one of my grandmother’s sisters. (Both my grandmother and her sister are gone now, but some things just don’t change.)

Every year on the 4th of July, everyone who’s in town gathers at that house for a cookout. There’s a big grill out back, where the manly men types cook the meat. There’s also a pool, and every year, there’s a watermelon that goes in the pool. The kids play with it in the water most of the day, and then after everyone eats, the watermelon gets fished out, washed off, and sliced for everyone to dig in. The water in the pool chills it perfectly, not too cold like it would be from the fridge.

Now I want some pool-cooled watermelon!

I’ve been making up stories for as long as I can remember, but it took me a long time to figure out that maybe I should start writing them down. I started out writing fanfic well over a decade ago, and in 2010, I moved into original fiction. (Though I do still get waylaid by a fanfiction plotbunny now and then.)

Shae is new to Wilde City. Look for Fringes, her Charlie Harding Presents erotic sci-fi short due out later this summer. Visit her at: shaeconnorwrites.com

 

Owen Keehnen

I am not sure if it was the exactly the 4th of July, but I do recall the fireworks. I was probably 20 or so and felt very grown up. I was in my first real apartment with my first real boyfriend. It was night and to escape the heat we climbed out my bedroom window onto the roof. We spread a sheet on the graveled tar and were lying there just holding hands and watching the stars. There was heat lightning to the south. The small town fireworks began about a half hour after dusk and probably lasted a total of five minutes. When they ended, I turned to him and said, “I love you.” I didn’t know exactly what those words entailed, but I knew how I felt and at that moment there wasn’t a doubt in my mind. It was such a feeling of complete contentment. We ended up falling asleep out there on the roof and climbed back inside around 3 a.m. He’s gone now, but whenever I see fireworks I think of him and that rooftop and that moment. It always brings a smile.

In addition to the four poems he contributed to Falling Awake, Owen has two other projects coming soon to Wilde City. The LGBT Book of Days is a fun and comprehensive guide to thousands of the most important dates in LGBT history – it’s great for reference and trivia and a real treat to compile. The second is a humorous novel called Young Digby Swank, a gay coming of age story about growing up Catholic which is hilarious and heartbreaking and heroic all at the same time. Visit Owen on facebook.

 

Hank Edwards

Meet Josh Stanton, orphaned at a young age in the mid-1800s, he has always been considered an outcast in Belkin’s Pass. Now he’s grown into a quiet, well-educated young man full of secrets, the least of which is his love for his best friend, town deputy Dex Wells. But when the ancient vampire Balthazar begins feeding on the residents of Belkin’s Pass, Josh’s secrets prove to be the turning point in a battle for the souls of the townspeople—but at what personal cost? —- Cowboys & Vampires, available now at Wilde City Press.

Visit Hank at hankedwardsbooks.com

 

 

What is your favorite Summer memory or tradition?

Geoffrey Knight

My favourite Independence Day moment has to be when Will Smith socks that mean old alien in the chops after they have the dogfight in the canyon and he says something bad-ass like, “You aliens just wrecked my July 4 barbecue and now I’m gonna have me some E.T. burgers because you guys suck!” Oh … you mean a real Independence Day memory, not a scene from the movie! I guess I’ll answer the Best Summer Memory or Tradition question instead.

I don’t think I have one particular memory or tradition that stands out because I love everything about Summer. Being Australian, Summer means lots of public holidays: Christmas, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day and Australia all happen in the space of a month or so, so January pretty much means lots of delicious seafood and days at the beach and your skin feels dusty with sea-salt the whole time, which is a feeling I love. Now that I’ve moved to an island it’s even better; Sydney beaches can get really crowded but up here I can walk from one end of the beach to the other with my dogs and not see a soul. And yes, of course I go in for a skinny dip! ;)

“I want to see.” … “Nash, we’re in Egypt, in the ruins of an ancient city, standing in front of a secret door! Aren’t you curious?”
“Curiosity killed the – ” … “No, I’m not curious.”
The lie was unconvincing enough to give Ryan the confidence to sway him.
Sway him with a kiss. …
“Curious yet?”

You can read Nash’s answer in Cairo Curse, book two in the Vampire Lair series. Visit Geoff at www.geoffreyknightbooks.com

 

Lloyd Meeker

My favorite summer tradition is honoring the solstice. In one old tradition, Midsummer Night was the time to leave a small dish of brandy in the garden as a gift to the fairies, which I’ve always thought was charming. Inviting the goodwill of nature is always a sensible idea!

I mark the solstice by honoring extremes – the dark of winter in the southern hemisphere and the light of summer in the northern – and the inevitable swing of the one toward the other. It is the wisdom of the Tao, the dance of light and dark, each with the spark of the other in its core.

This idea may seem pretty dry, but try this little experiment: sit on a playground swing and build momentum. Make the point furthest back winter solstice, when movement forward begins, and make the point farthest forward summer solstice, when graceful retreat begins. Feel the delicious centrifugal force as you move, your weightlessness at both far points – and remember the earth, held in her arc by the sun.

Gay PI Russ Morgan doesn’t mind being fifty but hates being single. He’s made peace with being a psychic empath, and he’s managed to build a decent life since getting sober. As he uncovers obscene secrets shrouded in seeming righteousness, he might have to make peace with a sword of justice that cuts the innocent as deeply as the guilty. —- Enigma, coming soon to Wilde City Press.

Visit Lloyd at lloydmeeker.com

 

Clare London

I wish the UK had July 4 celebrations as well! This summer so far, we’ve had sleet, flood rains, gale force winds and then occasionally a sunny, hot day. I think this is the reason most of our sentimental celebrations take place in the latter half of the year. Or why the British talk constantly about the weather.

It seemed sunnier in The Old Days, when I was young(er). One happy memory is of an annual trip with friends to Henley-on-Thames, for a barbeque/picnic beside the river. This was the irresponsible time before kids and mortgages! We always arranged a game of rounders (like baseball, but not), competing with way more enthusiasm than skill, and helped along (or hindered?) by huge amounts of alcohol.

We still have photographic evidence of the fun. A gal sitting in her bikini, draining the last cupful of fruit punch from a litre-sized jug. A chap with his younger brother hauled over his shoulder, running towards the river to throw him in. Various self-inflicted rounders-bat injuries on sunburned shins. Clare, clutching river weeds to her chest because she lost her tube top when she dived in…

Oh those lazy, hazy afternoons of summer!

Meet Freeman, a quiet man who’s not used to sharing his plans, his history, or his emotions. He’s returned to the city on business, a case that has nothing to do with the people he once left behind: his ex-wife, his male ex-lover, and his ex-business partner. He has no plans to engage with any of them again – until he meets Kit, the provocative young man who’s going to pull Freeman from the safety of his shell, whether he wants to or not. —- Freeman, coming soon to Wilde City Press.

Visit Clare at www.clarelondon.co.uk

 

Eric Arvin

I’m a big music slut any time of the year, but I especially love summer music or music that makes me think of summer. Every spring I make an awesome playlist for the warmer months. There be lots of frivolity and even some slower tunes in the mix. Here are a few from this year’s playlist:

Boys on the Radio by Hole
Mad About You by Belinda Carlisle
Love This by Cosmo Jarvis
Love Profusion by Madonna (Madonna has a lot of great summer tunes)
Car Wheels on A Gravel Road by Lucinda Williams

Midnight City by M83 (they’re last album was a summer spectacular)
I’m Like a Bird by Nelly Furtado
Soak Up the Sun by Sheryl Crow
Summer Fling by kd lang (from her album Invincible Summer)
Summertime Clothes by Animal Collective

Wicked Game by Chris Isaak
Spaceman by The Killers (again, they’ve got a lot of great summery songs)
Boys of Summer by Eric Himan (a great version of the Don Henley classic)
For the Summer by Ray LaMontagne
Summer Days by Norah Jones

Summertime by Ella Fitzgerald
Summer Moved On by A-ha
Freeway by Aimee Mann (Mann’s voice just sounds like summer to me, other Mann Summer songs include 4th of July and Fifty Years After the Fair)
Free Falling by Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
End of the Innocence by Don Henley

If I Ever Feel Better by Phoenix
Birmingham by Shovels & Rope
Ramona by Night Beds
Singing in My Sleep by Semisonic
Lightning Bolt by Jake Bugg

Eric Arvin resides in the same sleepy Indiana river town where he grew up. He graduated from Hanover College with a Bachelors in History. He has lived, for brief periods, in Italy and Australia. He has survived brain surgery and his own loud-mouthed personal demons. Eric is the author of The Mingled destinies of Crocodiles and Men, and various other sundry and not-so-sundry writings. He intends to live the rest of his days with tongue in cheek and eyes set to roam.

Visit Eric at ericarvin.blogspot.com

 

Patrick Darcy

Without a doubt, on a cold summer night in Dublin, I dream of being naked on an Ibizan beach. Preferably Playa Es Cavallet, the gay nudist beach. It’s a bit of a trek; you have to get past the German and Dutch naturalist before getting to the promised land of sexy, naked homos. I see it now, hot muscled hunks, with tattoos and great big…….

The beach is all white sand lined with cool beach bars, and the sound of funky music fills the air. Such a great relaxed vibe and beautiful people cruising each other. To say it’s sexual would be an understatement.

Summer is all about being naked, however, there are occasional problems. As a weak and feeble man, I am constantly being shown up by my hardon. I want to be dignified and European. But I’m Irish, I see a hot naked guy and, well, my cock just has to show its appreciation. Total nude beach faux pas. Oh the shame of it! The only saving grace is that my buns are rather pert. So I spend most of the day laying on my front, peaking through my Roy Orbison shades at all the beach talent.

OK. now I’m horny!

Hi! I’m Patrick Darcy. Rugby player, Irishman and writer of full strength gay erotica. Follow me at patrickdarcybooks.com, as I comment on life in Dublin, hot men and all the things that make me tick. There are two big passions in my life: great sex and rugby. Quite often, these are combined! I love the thrill of competition, the power, the intensity, the brotherhood of rugby.

Oh, and I love being naked!

 

Anne Brooke

My favourite summer memory is my mother’s homemade lemonade. She only ever made it in summer as she said it was an outdoor drink and needed a big dose of sunshine to make the bubbles pop. Apparently winter would make the whole drink go grey and flat, and as I was young I believed her – and in a way I still do. Homemade lemonade only ever appeared about three or four times a year and only when we were very good and she was pleased with us. It wasn’t ever something she prepared for either but, in our family group, she would slip away quietly and after a while one or another of us would realise she was missing. From then on the excitement would mount and then – at last! – half an hour or so later she would reappear with a huge jug of lovely lemony-yellow bubbly drink and a selection of glasses. Drinking it meant you had enough sugar in your system to last you well into the next month, but it was like a blast of sunshine and citrus in the mouth, I can tell you. Sheer bliss!

The night I met Luke Milton, the last thing I was looking for was any kind of relationship …

“What the hell are you doing?” …
“Waiting for you …”
“You’ve not covered up your mark.” … “You must have taken some stick for it from the office.”
“Why should I cover it up? You gave it to me. That’s worth all the stick in the world.”

Read the rest of Luke and Alan’s interactions in The Beginning of Knowledge, available now at Wilde City Press. Visit Anne at www.annebrooke.com

 

Ewan Creed

I’ll set the scene for you – a rowboat, a bottle of wine, a low moon, and a good man. We had met on the beach that morning and clicked, so after hanging out all day I invited him out to dinner and then for a ride on the lake. There was just something about him. It was so easy to talk to him. I told him more about myself than I told my best friends and he shared just as much about himself. That evening was nothing special in the scheme of things, and yet perfect at the same time. It was one of those connections you just don’t forget. He was the first person I ever told that I wanted to be a writer.

Meet Alex, a man caught up in the leather bar scene of 1975, a man consumed by the feeling of sexual abandon and freedom. One night Alex gets more than he bargained for and is transported into a dark carnal wonderland of sexual abandon and perpetual desire, a world that can trap a man for all eternity. —- The Leather Bar Mural, available now from Wilde City Press.

Follow all of Ewan’s release dates HERE.

 

 

If you could escape to anywhere in the world this summer, where would it be?

J.P. Barnaby

J. P. Barnaby, an award-winning gay romance novelist, is the author of over a dozen books including the Little Boy Lost series, the Forbidden Room series, and Aaron. As a bisexual woman, J.P. is a proud member of the GLBT community both online and in her small town on the outskirts of Chicago. A member of Mensa, she is described as brilliant but troubled, sweet but introverted, and talented but deviant. She spends her days writing software and her nights writing erotica, which is, of course, far more interesting. The spare time that she carves out between her career and her novels is spent reading about the concept of love, which, like some of her characters, she has never quite figured out for herself.

J.P.’s new Rentboy series is coming to Wilde City press later this year. Visit J.P. at www.JPBarnaby.com

 

Pelaam

I live in New Zealand and summer here starts in December. For someone born in the UK, seeing bikinis and sun lotion next to Christmas trees and decorations just isn’t right. A holiday somewhere hot and sultry with exotic cocktails might be most people’s idea of summer bliss. However, I’d like to escape to celebrate my summer Christmas in Canada with snow, caribou, and lots of mulled wine.

Living in clean, green New Zealand, I am an author, foodie, wine buff and Art Historian. I write M/M romance, particularly paranormal, sci-fi and fantasy, and like to add passion, and a twist, to my tales. I grew up on Dr Who, Star Trek and The Night Stalker. I never leave the house without at least one notebook, ready to jot down anything the muse may whisper. Visit me on facebook.

 

Charlie Harding

I would scoop up my partner Scotty Rage and we’d meet up with our 10 closest friends at a beach somewhere. Seafood, cocktails, sand, sun and the people we care about… Our favorite combination!

Charlie Harding joined the ranks of adult performers in February 2012. He has won multiple awards including “Best New Cummer,” “Best Daddy,” “Best Ass Eater 2012” and “Manly Man”. Charlie has also put his multiple college degrees to work building network of business ventures including launching his own line of personally selected gay erotica at www.charliehardingpresents.com. Charlie lives in Atlanta, Georgia with his partner and fiance, Scotty Rage.

 

Ethan Stone

I would love to go on a cruise to somewhere warm but not too hot. I want a place with a beach, cool clear water and some hot cabana boys. The hot cabana boys are not just for eye candy, they’d be there for inspiration. The whole trip would be for inspiration since I’ve been having a hard time with writing lately. Being in a relaxing environment with pretty eye candy all around me could really help with my writing block. Additionally, it would benefit my health as well. If I were to lay shirtless in the sun, soaking up all that vitamin D, I’d have all the energy I need for anything that happened to come up. :-)

Anyone wanting to contribute to the “Save Ethan’s Mental and Physical Health” Cruise feel free to use Paypal.

“Did you like what you saw out there?” …
“You’re a very … talented dancer.” …
“Anything else you liked?”
“You fishing for a compliment, Holt? You don’t seem the type to need your ego stroked.”
“Maybe it’s not my ego I want s…”

See if Jason Holt ever gets around to telling Quinn what he wants stroked, Past Tense available now at Wilde City Press. Visit Ethan at www.ethanjstone.com.

Standard
Anne Brooke, Eric Arvin, Ethan Stone, Hank Edwards, Jacob Z. Flores, Patrick Darcy, Sandrine Gasq-Dion, TJ Klune, Wilde City Press

And The Winners Are…

Hi! Remember Eric Arvin and TJ Klune’s video? Yeah, me too! Well, as it happens, they had a little giveaway going on along with their shenanigans, and guess what? The six winners have been selected. And guess what else? They’ll each be receiving a nifty download code apiece for a FREE book from Wilde City Press. See? Nifty.

So, on that note, it’s my great pleasure to announce the lucky winners right here! They are:


Diana

Maya

Joanne from Colorado

Jbst

little1kry

and

russ coons

Congratulations to each and every one of you, and to everyone who participated, thanks for stopping by and playing along in our Wilde Week of fun!

And on behalf of Bruce, Tina, and Jackie, I’d like to take a moment to offer a huge thanks to Geoff Knight, Ethan Day, and Dolorianne, the woman behind the scenes who made this all go off without a single hitch, as well as a heaping helping of feels to all the authors – Patrick Darcy, Hank Edwards, Eric & TJ, Jacob Z.Flores, Ethan Stone, Sandrine Gasq-Dion, and Anne Brooke, who each made this such a stellar week!

Cheers!!

Standard
Anne Brooke, Geoffrey Knight, Wilde City Press

Look Who’s Just Turned 21! Please Help Us Give A Warm Birthday Welcome To The One And Only Anne Brooke!


The incomparable Geoffrey Knight had the honor of asking the inimitable Anne Brooke a few questions about her first Wilde City publication, The Beginning of Knowledge, her upcoming release Taking a Chance, her contributions to the WCP poetry collection Falling Awake, and a lot more. What came of it is this, an interview you won’t want to miss!

Happy Birthday, Anne!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GK: First of all, a big thank you to Lisa and everyone at The Novel Approach for having us, and Anne, thanks so much for joining in the fun of Wilde City’s week at The Novel Approach. Lisa from TNA has told me she’s a big fan of yours and has read everything you’ve written, so I’m very pleased to let her know that we’ll soon be publishing a new short romance from you titled Taking A Chance. Why don’t we start by chatting about that, because I think everyone is going to love Taking A Chance.

AB: The cheque’s in the post, Lisa – again … Seriously, what a lovely woman you are – thank you very much! It’s fabulous to be here. Yes, I’m really looking forward to getting Taking A Chance out there. I’ve a real soft spot for people who make sudden dramatic decisions that have the potential to change their lives. It’s an incredibly brave and liberating thing to do. Which is just what my hero Benjamin does in the story:

The moment model and part-time actor Benjamin spots the sexually alluring David outside his local restaurant one Friday night, he’s determined to get to know him better. Much better. So he takes a chance and pretends to be Timothy, the blind date David is waiting for. Soon he realises it’s not just an ordinary date, but something way beyond his experience is actually going on.

When David asks him about submission, safe words and spanking, Benjamin knows the sensible thing to do would be to make his apologies and leave. Funny then how his body keeps telling him something different, and instead he finds himself strangely eager to know more. Will it be a date to remember and if David discovers his deceit, could he ever be persuaded to take any kind of a chance on Benjamin?

Many years ago, one of my husband’s friends went on holiday to Spain, met a man out there – and married him, all in the three weeks of her holiday. When she came back, everyone who knew her was totally shocked (she was really a very sensible kind of a gal) and they all said it would never last. I thought it was amazing, and a huge well done to her (and the man concerned). Well over twenty-five years and three children later, they’re still going strong. Sometimes your whole life has the potential to change in a moment if you just have the courage to believe in yourself, and that’s the kind of dilemma I wanted Benjamin – and David – to have. I hope people will enjoy the read.

GK: The thing I love most about your writing is that, no matter how short or long a story is, you thrive on characters with complexities, even if you only hint at them or we have to dig to find them. Even when the plot seems to control the stakes in the story, it’s actually the depth of character and their reactions that steer things. How easy or hard is it to come up with your characters?

AB: I’m endlessly fascinated by people and what makes them tick – which is something of a family trait as my grandmother could sit on park benches for hours, watching people going by and making up stories about them. She was an odd one, was Grandma! I always loved to hear what she came up with – and it’s probably from her that I learnt the truth that people are always a thousand times more complex than you think they are. Everyone’s capable of great saintliness and great horror in their lives, no matter how straightforward they might look on the surface, and there’s no end to the actions we all might do at any time. Even when we think we know someone incredibly well, we most definitely do not – people are like onions in the sense that there’s no real end to their layers. It’s that kind of mystery I like to convey in my stories, in the best way for the particular character I’m writing about. Sometimes the most important thing about writing is to stand aside – as far as any writer can – and let the character run with the text. It’s the hardest thing to do, but always the most satisfying.

GK: Your first story with Wilde City is The Beginning of Knowledge, published under our Charlie Harding Presents banner. As a porn star who knows how to turn up the heat, Charlie publishes books that are highly erotic, but also strong on story and character. We were lucky enough to publish The Beginning of Knowledge, which is dark and edgy and hot, and ticks all of Charlie’s boxes. Tell us about the story and what compelled you to write it.

AB: The Beginning of Knowledge is a story about passion and power, and how it can change our lives for the worse as well as for the better. A lot of my stories focus in one way or another on the issue of obsession, especially sexual obsession, as I think it’s a very powerful driver, and it’s always fascinating to explore people living life at an extreme edge. The blurb is:

When University administrator Alan Castleton meets temporary worker and talented pianist Luke Milton, he doesn’t expect to become obsessed with the handsome young blond. But soon he is heavily involved in a passionate and angry affair, and exploring the dark shadows of his own personality in a way he’s never encountered before.

The more Alan tries to break free from his obsession, the deeper it entangles him. The dangerous split between his reason and his sexual desires threatens his peace of mind and, when the crisis point comes, he must decide once and for all the kind of life he should lead.

It started out as a very different story which simply wasn’t working and I couldn’t think why. Then it came to me that I was skirting round the issue of the heat and passion between Alan and Luke, and trying to make it something it wasn’t – ie by focusing on the business setting where they’d first met, rather than on the erotic relationship. I wasn’t really listening to either character’s story as they understood it – which is always a fatal mistake for any author to make, of course! Once I’d given up trying to fit them both into my idea of what they should be and started really listening to them, the whole story just came alive and was a thousand times easier to write. I did scare myself though with how much I enjoyed writing angry desperate sex. Funny – I think my husband might be hiding right now, hmmm …

GK: You write both sweet romances and scorching hot erotica, not to mention you’re able to pen laugh-out-loud comedy, heart-wrenching drama and dark, dangerous thrills. Is there any one genre or sub-genre you prefer?

AB: Oh heck, that’s really tough. It honestly depends on what mood I’m in – as I go with the genre which fits my feelings about life at the time. Which probably goes to show – rather too well for comfort – just how unstable I can actually be! I do enjoy writing the comic fiction, but I suspect the dark stuff sits more naturally with the way I am underneath. Strangely the scenes which I find easiest to write and I tend to be able to do without a lot of editing afterwards are the sex scenes (well, I’m only human …) and the scenes involving violence and pain. I did explain this to my husband some while back and, worryingly, he didn’t look that surprised but just smiled and walked backwards out of the door whilst calling the Police for help. I made that last bit up – no, really I did!…

I think this is part of the trouble I have with actually selling books – people don’t tend to know exactly what genre I’ll be writing in this time whenever they pick up one of my stories – so they can’t always instantly tell if it’s going to suit them or not. I suspect it’s easier being an author these days who only writes in one genre, as then everyone knows where they are. On the other hand, I get a big kick out of writing in different moods and formats as it just seems more honest a way of doing things, certainly for me.

GK: I’ve asked you this before when I interviewed you for Why Straight Women Love Gay Romance, but I love that you as a person contradict what many perceive to be the norm. You are a straight, married woman and devout Christian living in the English countryside. Yet you have struck this amazing balance between being true to your faith and writing gay male romance and erotica, and even better, you’re not afraid to discuss your views and fight for them.

AB: Ha! Thank you – I loved your questions for that book, and am really proud to be part of it. You did a brilliant job and I can thoroughly recommend it to everyone. I think in many ways every one of us is contradictory and that’s something that should be celebrated rather than questioned. I’m not sure I’ve ever actually met a normal person – or maybe I’m not moving in the right circles (as it were)?…

On the other hand and at a deeper level, I see nothing wrong and everything right with being a happily married Christian and a gay romance and erotica fiction writer – I believe very much that this is part of God’s “calling” to me, and all I need to do is fulfill it the best dang way I can – it certainly helps me to be able to express the powerful male voice in my head that’s been with me as long as I can remember. And, besides, as I’m sure I’ve said before – to you and many others! – God invented sex and romance as part of being human and we should celebrate these gifts. Goodness me, even Christians have sex – but only on Sundays and out of sight of the vicar, naturally (hmm, now there’s a plot line – no, stop right there as I’m scaring myself!)… Anyway, I do find it funny how many people question writers of erotic fiction as if they’re very strange indeed – but nobody ever thinks to question writers of crime fiction. Murder is much odder than sex, after all, and certainly less desirable!

GK: Both in terms of time and headspace, how do you manage to juggle writing, marriage, a job at the university where you work, your dedication to the Church and your fabulous baking! (Yes, I’ve seen the posts on Facebook and my mouth waters every time you bake a cake!)

AB: I hate being bored. No, seriously, I really hate it. I love doing a lot of things at once, though these days (I’m 49 years and 2 days old by the time you publish this on Sunday!) I find I have to factor in sleep as well, or I get rather too angsty for sanity – mine and everyone else’s. I believe also that you always make time for the things you’re passionate about and all those things you mention above are a huge part of who I am and who I see myself to be. Marriage, writing, my faith are all vital and I couldn’t be me without them – and I thoroughly enjoy working for the Uni and once a week pretending to be a Domestic Goddess in the kitchen. Mind you, don’t forget you only see the cake successes though – I’m too embarrassed to post pictures of the disasters, and also you can’t tell what they actually taste like, which occasionally is definitely a blessing. Of course my husband is far too much of a gentleman to be anything but complimentary about my baking…

GK: Poetry! There’s just not enough of it in the world today, which is why Wilde City decided to give poetry a chance and publish our first collection from various Wilde City authors titled Falling Awake (which is the title of one of your poems in the collection). Best of all, it’s Free! Why did you jump at the chance to be in this collection, especially knowing that nobody was going to earn a penny in royalties? What is it about poetry that seems to awaken our senses?

AB: I think all poems should be free and there for everyone to enjoy – as if you get the right poem at the right time for you, then it just sings and can speak to you in a way nothing else can. That’s the magic of it. Sometimes people tell me they hate poetry – when actually they’ve not met the right poem or type of poetry for them just yet. I also think that people actually speak poetry and rhythm every time they open their mouths. It’s the way we’re wired. Nobody speaks in prose, ever. Listen next time you go to the supermarket or the bank – you’ll hear the lilt and song of everyday speech all around you. Truly magical indeed.

GK: Do you have a favorite poem in the collection?

AB: I think Falling Awake maintains an incredibly high standard throughout and I’m thrilled to be part of the anthology. If I absolutely had to pick a favourite and you were twisting my arm for an answer (cruel man!), then I’d say I truly LOVE Exchange by Hank Edwards which makes me gasp each time I read it for the way it tells a whole relationship story just in two perfect verses. Then again (and I know you don’t want me to mention yours, Geoff, but, sorry, I’m going to anyway …) Pedestal is just brilliant and I smile each time I read that one. It says it all in such a short space and I dang well wish I’d written it. Curses, foiled again …

GK: What’s currently on Anne Brooke’s WIP list?

AB: I’m currently working on a gay fantasy, The Taming of The Hawk. It started out as a short story, then it became a novella and, heck, it’s still going. Oh heck, anyone for a trilogy?? It’s all very rough at the moment so it’ll need a load of editing when the first draft is finally all on the page, but I’m enjoying the ride.

At the same time, I’ve just started a new short story (which will definitely remain a short story, I’m – almost – sure of it) called The Frozen Heart. It’s about a man physically terrified of touch – for good reason – and his relationship with a young hooker. This one’s in the early stages for now, but I’m looking forward to getting more of it down over the summer. Weather permitting!

GK: Anne, thanks so much for chatting, I love a good chat with you. One day we’ll do it over scones and tea! And one of your cakes! :-)

AB: Thanks so much for letting me be part of Wilde City Press – I’m loving the location and the company. And thanks again to Lisa for letting us take over her site for a week-long party – we’re all very grateful. And we promise to leave everything tidy when we go, honest. Meanwhile, in terms of cakes, I’m already getting my apron on and my spatula out, Geoff (as it were …). Naturally, my door is always open to you!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks so much, Anne and Geoff, for closing out our Wilde Week on such a great note! It’s been an honor to host Wilde City Press and all the authors who’ve contributed their time and talents to making it stellar!

Standard
Anne Brooke, Ewan Creed, Geoffrey Knight, Hank Edwards, Owen Keehnen, Wilde City Press

Falling Awake Is Poetry In (E)motion

Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance. – Carl Sandburg

Oscar Wilde once said something to the effect that every portrait painted with feeling is truly a portrait of the artist, not the subject. I suspect there’s some truth to that, and also suspect the same can be said of poetry. What is poetry, after all, but a portrait painted with a palette of words rather than colors? It begins with a thought, an emotion, an event, and ends with absolution for the writer as he examines and exhumes and purges himself of the feelings that have prompted him to bare his soul, or, at the very least, his heart; to take those emotions and turn them into myriad hues of musical words on a colorful scale.

Anne Brooke, Ewan Creed, Hank Edwards, Owen Keehnen, and Geoffrey Knight are the artists who have joined together in this collaborative effort called Falling Awake, a collection of poetry that speaks of loss, betrayal, denial, faith, sex…love. Each piece is but a small window through which the reader is able to catch a glimpse of the authors’ creative talents, each piece telling a story—a beginning, middle, and end—in all the rich tones of a free-form and lyrical language. The collection is aesthetic, much like a portrait, and much like those tangible forms of art, the beauty of Falling Awake will be in the eye of the beholder. But the true beauty of poetry is that, unlike a work of art hanging in a museum, once the poet shares those words they then belong to the reader as well, becoming an emotion in motion.

Falling Awake, in some ways, reads like flash fiction that has been structured with a cadence and rhythm all its own. This collection is being offered as a FREE download from Wilde City Press. If you enjoy poetry at all, I highly recommend grabbing this one as soon as you can.

Reviewed by: Lisa

You can download Falling Awake here:

Standard
Amber Allure, Anne Brooke, Small Gems

Small Gems – The Delaneys at Home (The Delaneys #5) by Anne Brooke




Liam O’Connell is up to his eye…err…balls in Delaney twins, and it doesn’t seem he could possibly be any happier about it. He’s gone from being Mark and Johnny’s plaything, to dating them, to living with them in the span of these five short stories, and I’ve loved every single minute I’ve spent watching these boys and their relationship evolve.

On an erotic scale of one to ten, The Delaneys at Home is right about an eleven, as Mark—who is always superbly in charge—and Johnny—who is always supremely delicious—show Liam—who is always perfectly witty and loveable—exactly what it means to become a part of their family and to be loved by them, as well as the consequences (of the truly combustible variety, I might add) of not being entirely forthcoming with them about every aspect of himself.

With each new installment in this series, my anticipation grows exponentially for the next. I wish the stories were longer, I wish Anne Brooke could write them faster, and if I’m being totally honest, I think I sort of wish I had my very own Delaneys to play with. :-D

If you’re a fan of this sexy little series, don’t miss this one. I think it may be my favorite yet.

Buy The Delaneys at Home HERE.

Standard
Anne Brooke, Riptide Publishing, Small Gems

Small Gems – Where You Hurt the Most by Anne Brooke

Some of the most painful scars, the ones that hurt the most, are the scars that can’t be seen, whether it’s the end of a relationship or the end of a chapter in life that seemed like nothing but promise until, in the space of a moment, it shifted drastically and left behind the visible evidence of that change like a brand upon the skin.

Where You Hurt the Most is the story of two men, each scarred but in very different ways, who are brought together in what might be described as both a business transaction and an act of mercy.

Dan’s life was irrevocably altered after a tragic accident that left half his face scarred and left him decimated emotionally. Hiding himself from the world, keeping everyone at arm’s length, Dan cut himself off from everything he was and everything he’d dreamt of being before it was all so cruelly stripped away from him. He is the beast who guards himself and hides behind the walls of bitterness left behind in the wake of his transformation.

Adrian is a paid escort, not a whore, mind you, but a warm and intelligent companion for hire who seems to instinctively know his clients’ needs, even if the need is nothing more than a momentary sense of connection to another living soul. But not a single one of those clients truly knows Adrian. He separates himself from them, maintaining a sense of distance even as he draws them out of themselves. He is physical perfection and beauty, but even Adrian has scars and hides behind an identity that isn’t even his own.

Where You Hurt the Most isn’t a literal retelling of the French fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, but whether Anne Brooke intended it or not, the connection is there in this story of patience and acceptance and understanding and compassion that completely alters the lives of these two men. This is a story of seeing and sensing the pain and the promise that lies beneath the surface of the fragile and imperfect skin, of going beyond the physical and delving into the places where the strength of the man, the truth of him, resides, until, finally, he is changed for the better.

This is a short but truly gorgeous story, rich with the hope found in something new.

Buy Where You Hurt the Most HERE.

Standard
Anne Brooke, J.M. Snyder, JMS Books LLC, Musa Publishing, Small Gems

Small Gems – Angels and Airheads by Anne Brooke & Just a Little Note by J.M. Snyder

“There are none so blind as those who will not see.” And sometimes it takes nothing less than a gigantic nudge from your guardian angel to get you to open your eyes and see the miracle that’s been right in front of you all along.

Ricky is a bit thick, missing all the signs and even the outright nudges from previous angels that his best mate Jez is something more than just a friend, but Madred, the guardian angel from the Fourth Sphere in Heaven, isn’t exactly the sort to suffer the mental reasoning of an obtuse human. After all, how could the bright, brilliant, and beautiful Jez be in love with someone like Ricky? Ricky himself certainly can’t fathom it, so it couldn’t possibly be true. But then he’s given the chance to see with own eyes how he looks through the eyes of the someone who means more to him than anyone else in the world, and then it’s up to Ricky to take the chance on seizing his miracle.

Angels and Airheads is a story of perfect love in an imperfect world, and what could be more sweet than that?

Buy Angels and Airheads HERE.


Tommy may be the musical the students at Lakeside High are rehearsing to perform in the school’s auditorium, but Just a Little Note is a little bit Cyrano de Bergerac behind the scenes of this sweetly charming coming-of-age story.

Bryan Lovett is in love with his friend Jesse Carter. Jesse Carter is in love with his friend Bryan Lovett. The problem is that neither one knows the others’ secret, and then there’s Emily, the girl who’s in love with Jesse and who wants Bryan to help her land the object of her affection, which complicates things all the more because really, how do you help the girl who’s now both your friend and your rival for the affections of the boy you both love? Oh, the complexities of first love and high school romance.

When Bryan suggests Emily write Jesse a note to tell him how she feels, he might’ve anticipated Emily would jump on the idea, but never did he dream she would complicate things by begging him to help her write that note. Finally, though, Bryan does agree to do it, and pours his heart and soul into the words he himself would say to Jesse if only there weren’t a crippling fear there to hold him back.

Letter composed, rewritten in Emily’s hand, and delivered, it doesn’t have quite the impact on Jesse that Emily expected. It does, however, have the exact impact on Jesse that Bryan could only have ever dreamt of. And unlike the tragedy that was Roxanne, Cyrano, and Christian, that little note was nothing but a happy beginning for Jesse and Bryan.

J.M. Snyder wrote this one in the 3rd person present, which was ideal for this “play within a play”, as she skillfully directs the reader through the story toward its happy ending.

Buy Just a Little Note HERE.

Standard
Anne Brooke, Riptide Publishing

The Heart’s Greater Silence by Anne Brooke

The Heart's Greater SilenceThe Heart’s Greater Silence by Anne Brooke
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Mark is a man who burns his candle at both ends. And he did so quite successfully for a while, until the two ends ultimately met and he got burnt in a most painful and consequential way. Mark is a man whose mind and body are divided between want and need. He is a man who had everything but ended up with nothing when the battle between pure lust and possible love made a casualty of his heart.

Richard is a man of the cloth, married to his God and his vocation, but is physically compelled to carry on an illicit affair with Mark. Craig is the man who could have been everything to Mark, a partner in every way, if only Mark’s feelings for Craig could have outpaced his desire for Richard. When the three men come face to face to face with the truth, the decisions and aftermath of Mark’s duplicity leave him aimless and uncertain of where he will go from there.

Anne Brooke has written a somber and beautiful story of a man who had everything and lost it all because he coveted two very different men. It is dark and solemn and resonates with a sense of conflict and despair that wove the ideal atmosphere. It was moving and played beautifully against the knowledge that sometimes free will and human nature simply don’t leave room for happy endings.

This is the story of a man who was commanded by his desires and driven by a compulsion for one man who ruled his body and the other who fulfilled his need to belong to someone. When their worlds collided, the destruction of life as Mark knew it was profound.

I’m hopeful the ending of this short story leaves room for more of Mark’s journey.

BUY LINK

Standard