APRIL 2012 M/M ROMANCE NEWSLETTER|
Welcome to our newsletter. We hope the content on this page is both informative and entertaining. We welcome feedback; you can send it to the Newsletter Editor. Also, please visit the Dreamspinner Press blog! Follow the blog to see author posts, book excerpts, contests, and other news from the press about M/M romance. Enjoy!
Ariel Tachna, Social Networking Coordinator, Dreamspinner Press
SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT - 1000TH TITLE CELEBRATION
Our celebration of the release of our 1000th title continues! Short stories are currently 20% off through April 3. All ebook anthologies go on sale at 20% off April 4-10, and all paperbacks will be on sale April 11-17 at 20% off.
HARMONY INK PRESS IS NOW OPEN!
Dreamspinner Press is proud to announce the first release from our new Young Adult imprint, Harmony Ink. Distant Rumblings by John Goode is now available on Amazon!
Kane Vess may be gay, but he is also extraordinarily ordinary—a crushing weight in Athens, Iowa, where a person's worth is measured by his uniqueness. But when he meets the school's newest student, Kane's ordinariness seems to evaporate. He is desperate to get to know the mysterious stranger... and that leads him into danger.
Hawk is an exile from his homeland, an otherworldly traveler with impossible abilities and a changeling bodyguard. He's generally disappointed in Earth, which seems common except for Kane. But while Hawk and Kane explore their mutual interest, the forces that made Hawk an exile are busy tracking him down. Kane's newfound feelings pull him into Hawk's shadowy fantasy world, where he learns he needs to grow up fast. Kane's life may now be extraordinary, but if he isn't careful it could cost him everyone he holds dear—including Hawk.
Interested in submitting to Harmony Ink Press?
Harmony Ink Press is accepting manuscripts for young adult fiction featuring at least one strong LGBT main character who shows significant personal growth through the course of the story. Identifying as LGBT can be part of the growth process depicted in the book. We are looking for stories in all subgenres, featuring primary characters between the ages of 14 and 18 that explore all the facets of young adult life. Sexual content should be appropriate for the characters and the story. Manuscripts may contain any level of sexual content; however, excessive, crude or extremely explicit descriptions will be rejected. Sex between a minor and an adult (whether consensual or abuse) will only be accepted if it is implied, off page, and overcoming the occurrence contributes to the growth of the character in a positive way.
LGBT primary character between the ages of 14 and 18 who shows significant personal growth through the course of the story.
Authentic voice, unforgettable characters, and powerful world building (even for contemporary stories).
Novella or novel length (15,000-90,000 words). All manuscripts over 45,000 words will release in print as well as ebook.
Any subgenre is acceptable with a fresh premise.
Submissions inquiries of gay-themed Young Adult fiction can be sent to our Submissions e-mail
. Please indicate Young Adult in the subject line so the submission is given to the appropriate editor for review. Follow the standard Guidelines for Submission
Why did you decide to write romance stories?
I don't know that I ever set out with a goal to write "romance stories." In fact, I was not a fan of romance novels, in the more traditional sense. I read some of the popular ones back in junior high or high school, but never enjoyed them. I was drawn to mysteries, thrillers and espionage-type stories. I'd be much happier with Tom Clancy than with Nora Roberts.
But there is something about M/M romance that appeals to me in a way traditional or het romances never did, both as a reader and a writer. Two men falling in love (or lust, or both) throws a lot of character stereotypes out the window and introduces such interesting dynamics that it's so much fun to write.
How did you research your new action/adventure series?
Writing the Precious Gems series, which starts with Rarer Than Rubies, and continues with Italian Ice coming later this spring, has been like a dream come true for me. I'm American, but I lived abroad for about ten years and traveled extensively, and I always wanted to incorporate my travels and experiences into my writing. Rubies is set in Thailand, where I spent a few months, between work and business, so many of Trent's observations are really my own. The food, the heat, the tuk-tuks. I've enjoyed weaving my own excitement about Thailand into the story.
Italian Ice is set in Italy, where I spent four months one year, specifically in the Aeolian Islands off Sicily. They're a chain of volcanic islands, all different: one has a beach made of pumice, another is the most active volcano in Italy. A third has a beach where heated water bubbles up just offshore, like a natural jacuzzi. Again, I wanted to recreate my own adventures. I hope to draw the settings well enough that readers put Panarea and the other islands on their list of places to go!
Since each book centers on antiquities, I did additional research on the black market for art and antiquities, and international law enforcement efforts to catch and prosecute those involved. I had to force myself to limit my "research" because I kept going off on fascinating tangents and getting new story ideas. For Rubies, I also researched organized crime in Asia and Buddhist art, and ate a lot of Thai food. For Italian Ice my research included maritime archeology, coffee production, African art and a few other topics which would be huge spoilers.
How were you introduced to M/M fiction?
Like many readers and writers I first happened upon M/M fiction through slash fanfiction. I was a big fan of Buffy and Angel and happened upon some Angel/Spike stories. They made such a great couple, given their general love/hate dynamic. But I didn't talk about these stories to any of my friends. Then someone emailed me links to other M/M stories in a different fandom and I was absolutely hooked. Plus, I was thrilled I had someone to share my excitement with over how much I enjoyed the stories.
It was that same friend who got me writing M/M by daring me to write a crazy plot idea I had one day. I did a few chapters, just for her, and it turned into a novel. And I loved the characters I'd created so much I wrote two more books with them!
What are five of your favorite books/series?
How can you expect me to limit it to five?
The Count of Monte Cristo & The Three Musketeers series by Alexandre Dumas
An Uncommon Whore by Belinda McBride
Cut and Run Series by Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban
Blue Notes by Shira Anthony
Anything by Josh Lanyon
Why did you decide to try to publish your stories?
I had been writing M/M for about two years and getting hundreds of readers and comments on my website. A few other writers I knew had gotten stories published and I decided I had nothing to lose, but everything to gain. My friends encouraged and supported me and I got the opinions of complete strangers, too, in case my friends were just being nice.
I used to live down the street from a very popular mystery bookstore where I met a lot of my favorite authors at readings. The most important thing I learned from them is that you can't get published if you don't finish the story and show it to someone, and have some courage to send it to a publisher. I took a deep breath and had little panic attack after I sent off that very first story. But I got an acceptance the first time out and I was thrilled beyond words.
EM Lynley has worked finance, the wine industry and high-tech, though she'd rather be writing hot man-on-man romance. She spent 10 years as an economist and financial analyst, including a year as a White House Staff Economist, but only because all the intern positions were filled. Tired of boring herself and others with dry business reports and articles, her creative muse is back and naughtier than ever. She has lived and worked in London, Tokyo and Washington, D.C., but the San Francisco Bay Area is home for now.
Visit her web site at http://www.emlynley.com, her blog at http://emlynley.livejournal.com, her Twitter page at http://twitter.com/emlynley, and her Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/emlynley.
Win an eBook copy of your choice of one of this author's works. Clues are available in author bios on our web site.
This author lives in Toronto and loves jazz, Justice League cartoons, coffee, his friends, Gore Vidal, the Forbidden Planet store in London, and his daughter, though not in that order.
E-mail the Newsletter Editor with your answer. A winner will be chosen randomly from the correct answers. Contest ends the last day of the month.
The correct answers to last month's question: This author has a personal assistant named Boudreau, a large cat who never outgrew his kitten meow. Lou Sylvre
For the third Friday night in a row the cute blond guy at Number 6 had ordered pizza. The same pizza. Ham and mushroom, no olives, no onions. Nothing fancy. He was clearly a creature of habit. Connor knew he shouldn't open the box and inspect the pizza, but he couldn't help himself. He was curious by nature. And this guy made him more curious than usual.
Connor hovered outside the door and rang the buzzer. He shifted nervously as he heard footsteps and the lock turn. He smiled widely as the door opened. "Hi. Pizza?"
The guy from Number 6 smiled faintly. "Yeah, thanks."
He gestured with his arm and Connor walked into the apartment, placing the pizza on a small table in the hall. That was different. Normally Connor just handed the box over on the doorstep.
Number 6 fumbled in his pocket and pulled out a couple of crumpled notes. "What do I owe you?"
"Thirteen fifty," Connor replied. Same as last time, he thought, and the time before that.
"Oh, I only have twenties. Do you have change?"
"Hang on." Connor struggled to dig in the pockets of his skinny black jeans, but only felt coins in there. "Damn, I'm out. I probably have a couple of dollars in quarters?"
Number 6 shook his head. "Nah, it's ok. Keep it."
"Seriously? That's real generous of you. I'll make sure I have change next time."
Number 6 smiled again. "I suppose that's one way to make me order again."
Connor smiled back and winked. "I'm all about customer service."
Dimples flashed briefly in the guy's cheeks and Connor knew he was staring. He dragged his eyes away and backed toward the door. "Well, guess I'll see you next Friday." He nodded at the pizza box. "Enjoy."
"Thanks. I will."
Connor opened the box and inhaled deeply. Ham and mushroom again, what a surprise. He balanced the box carefully on one hand and pushed the buzzer.
It took a few minutes for the door to be answered and Connor's hand was starting to burn. He juggled the pizza and was rubbing one hand on his thigh when the door finally swung open. "You took your sweet time. What kept you?"
Number 6 leaned on the doorframe, arms folded. "Whatever happened to 'it's all about customer service'?"
Connor grimaced and blew on his fingers. "Yeah well. I'm in pain here, man. Help me out?" He thrust the pizza box forward and stepped inside.
"Don't you guys get gloves or something?"
"Or something," Connor muttered. He looked around the hall and noticed a door opening to a small bathroom. "I could use some cold water." He wiggled his red fingers. "May I?"
"Sure." Number 6 pushed the door open and turned on the tap.
Connor stuck his fingers under the icy water and closed his eyes with a moan. It sure felt nice. He opened his eyes to see Number 6 watching him closely. The expression on his face made Connor squirm.
"What?" Connor said.
Number 6 shook his head and stepped back. "Oh, nothing." He rummaged in his jean pockets. "Thirteen fifty, right?"
"Yeah, but I owe you for last week, remember? Call it ten and we're good."
Connor caught a brief flash of those dimples again and the squirm in his gut increased. Damn, the guy really was as sexy as hell. Connor dried his hands off quickly on his T-shirt and took the ten dollars. "See you next Friday?"
"It's a date." Connor grinned and let himself out of the apartment.
When Connor pressed the buzzer, the door was yanked opened so fast he stumbled backward in surprise. "Damn, were you waiting for me?"
Number 6 looked sheepish. "Maybe. I felt bad about your hand last week."
"Ah." Connor spread his fingers in front of the guy's face. "I'm fine. Look, all mended." He held out the pizza box. "Your usual, sir."
"Why, thank you."
Connor was treated to a wide smile and full intensity dimples. He nearly melted into a puddle on the shiny hardwood floor. "Don't you ever get bored?" he blurted out.
"I mean with the pizza. You order the same every week. Don't you like variety?"
Number 6 raised an eyebrow. "I know what I like. Something wrong with that?"
"No, it's just that sometimes, you know, new things can be good."
Number 6 looked at Connor and nodded slowly. "Yeah. I guess you're right. Maybe I'll try something different next time."
"You should. You don't know what you're missing."
"What would you recommend?"
"Well I like most things. The barbeque chicken is good. I like the spicy beef too. Or the pepperoni."
"A meat lover, huh?"
Connor laughed. "You got that right."
Number 6 studied Connor for a moment, and then handed over his money with a smile. "I'll remember that. Thanks."
"Welcome." Connor backed away and gave the guy a quick wink.
Spicy beef AND pepperoni? The guy was really going for it. The luscious aromas made Connor's mouth water as he rang the buzzer.
The door opened with a whoosh and Connor gawped. The guy had obviously gotten dressed in a hurry as his blond hair was wet and his T-shirt was sticking to his damp chest.
"Sorry." Number 6 gestured down at his dishevelled appearance. "I was running late tonight."
"Hey, no apology needed. I'm just the guy who delivers your pizza." Connor tore his eyes away from the gorgeous body in front of him and held up the box. He sniffed appreciatively. "I definitely approve of your choice this week."
Number 6 shrugged and quirked his lips. "Yeah well, thought I'd give it a try. Take a risk."
Connor grinned back. "I'm glad. I'm sure you'll like it."
Number 6 took the box and inspected the contents. "Looks real good." He glanced back up at Connor under his lashes.
Connor's stomach flipped. He shifted a little closer and lowered his voice. "Look, I might be way out of line here but..."
"CONNORRR!" A female voice screeched down the hallway.
Connor jumped and turned around guiltily.
The voice called out again. "Are you done yet? Dinner's getting cold."
Connor gestured over his shoulder. "My sister. Sorry."
Number 6 frowned in confusion. "Your sister? Does she deliver pizzas too?"
"Er, not exactly."
"Connor!" A dark head appeared from out of a doorway two apartments down. "I thought you said you'd only be a minute. Get your ass back in here. I'm starved!"
"Yeah, just be a moment," Connor yelled back.
Number 6 looked totally puzzled and his brown eyes raked up and down Connor's body, taking in the casual jeans and T-shirt he wore. "You never wear a uniform," he murmured, "or a hat."
Connor bit his lip. "Well, no."
Number 6 shook his head, things slowly falling into place. "And you never bring the pizzas in a bag or anything."
"You don't deliver pizzas at all, do you?"
Busted. "Only to you."
"You could say I... intercept them."
"What? But how? Why?"
"I order one every Friday night too." Connor leaned in closer and rested his forearm on the door jam seductively. "Can't you guess why?"
Number 6 looked a little flustered. "Oh, right." He glanced down at the pizza box in his hands as if only just remembering he held it. He put in on the hall table and wiped his hands on the back of his jeans. He turned to Connor with a bashful smile. "So, I guess I owe you for that?"
Connor shook his head with a smile. "It's on me tonight. You can buy me dinner next time."
"Next time, huh?"
"You free next Friday?"
Number 6 dug his hands into his pockets. "I could be."
"You fancy pizza?"
Number 6 laughed and dropped his eyes to Connor's mouth. "Not really. I... uh... have a confession to make too."
"I don't really like pizza."
"No? So why did you...? Oh. Oh." Connor's smile widened. He stepped closer and held out his hand. "I'm Connor. I live at Number 9."
Number 6 took Connor's hand in his own. "Brice."
"Brice." Connor gripped his hand warmly and savored the name on his tongue. "A pleasure to meet you. Finally."
Free Short Story:|
Anyone for Pizza? by Anna Birmingham
Calls for Submissions - Contest
News - What I'm Reading - Recommended Reads
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New Releases - Coming Soon
The following authors will host Meet the Author events at Dreamspinner Press's Facebook page this month. All Meet the Author events are from 1 to 6 pm EST unless otherwise noted:|
April 7 - Alix Bekins, April 14 - K.Z. Snow, April 21 - Stephen Osborne, April 28, 2 to 7 pm - Poppy Dennison.
The authors of the Men of Steel anthology will host a chat at the Literary Nymphs Yahoo! group on Saturday, April 14. Come by for a chance to find out more about the anthology and maybe to win one of the prizes being given away!
CALLS FOR SUBMISSIONS|
In order to give all our potential authors the best service and attention, Dreamspinner Press no longer accepts simultaneous submissions. |
See the Open Calls for Submissions page for further details.
Limited Calls for 2012
Edited by Anne Regan
Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Whether it's a dog, cat, horse, snake, hamster, bird, ferret, goldfish, or something more exotic, owning a pet or working with animals has been proven to make people happier. In these stories, animals of all sorts should serve as the catalyst for bringing lovers together. Bonus points for working unusual or exotic animals into the story.
Editor's Note: No paranormal, no bestiality.
Submission Deadline: May 21, 2012
Don't Try This at Home
Edited by Julianne Bentley
Bonked heads. Rough carpet. Burned dinner. Awkward silence. Bitten lips. Startling length. Spilled wax. Pinched fingers. Shattered wineglass. Closet quickie. Flat souffle. Broken bedframe. Shower sex. Overzealous spanking. Embarrassing ex. Lost wallet. Terrible taste. Sore shoulders. Noxious odor. Absent date. Unbelievable girth. Kitchen canoodling. New toy. Stained sheets. Backward compliment. Stifling pillow. Locked handcuffs. Aching ass. Missing keys. Torn seams. Wrenched back. Angry cat. Overeager pass. Uncooperative zipper.
Something always goes wrong in real life. Fortunately, love blunts the edges so that romance trumps adversity.
Editor's Note: Humor a plus, no rape/nonconsensual situations, contemporary genre only.
Submission Deadline: July 16, 2012
2012 Advent Calendar - A Story a Day in the Month of December
Edited by Lynn West
When it comes to romance, ageless images are carried forever in your heart: A candle in the window burning bright. Warmth billowing from an old stone hearth. Snowflakes falling from the night sky under a full moon. Twinkle lights glinting in a lover's eyes. Romance during the winter holidays is evergreen, and these stories will get you in the mood for love. Your Christmas present to yourself!
Editor's Note: Because of the packaged nature of the set, all stories need to stand alone. No sequels to or spin-offs of previously published works, please.
Submission Deadline: Sept. 1, 2012
Snow on the Roof
Edited by Anne Regan
"Just because there's snow on the roof, doesn't mean the fire's gone out in the furnace." There's something to be said for maturity and experience, and in all of these relationships, at least one of the lovers is over forty. Whether it's a May/December romance, a second chance at love, or finding a soul mate later in life, these stories prove that it's never too late for love.
Editor's Note: At least one of the couple must be age 40+.
Submission Deadline: Nov. 19, 2012
Dreamspinner Press is accepting submissions for our in-house genre Timeless Dreams, romantic M/M historical fiction with happy endings. While reaction to same-sex relationships throughout time and across cultures has not always been positive, these stories celebrate M/M love in a manner that may address, minimize, or ignore historical stigma. You can visit the rough and tumble Old West, travel the ancient kingdoms of desert sheikhs, see the black and red lacquer of the Far East, or dance in dramatic Regency England. No matter where or when, in the romantic worlds of Timeless Dreams, our heroes always live happily ever after.
Manuscripts of any story length may be submitted. You must follow general submission guidelines for short stories for proper consideration. Please list "Timeless Dreams" in the subject line of your submission.
Dreamspinner Press is accepting submissions for our in-house genre, Bittersweet Dreams, stories of M/M romance with nontraditional endings. It's an unfortunate truth: love doesn't always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.
Manuscripts of any story length may be submitted. You must follow general submission guidelines for short stories for proper consideration. Please list "Bittersweet Dreams" in the subject line of your submission.
Bonds of Earth
By G N Chevalier
"...Chevalier does a masterful job of building their relationship. Both men have their reasons for resisting the relationship so when they finally come together you're like 'Yes! Good for you. You deserve happiness and someone to share you life with.' As for the love scenes (because I know you're wondering), they are well placed and appropriate for the romance Chevalier builds. This story is about two people finding each other despite all of the obstacles in their path. It's what romance should be—beautiful and complicated. I give Bonds of Earth a walking cane, a bath house, a nasty uncle and two flower beds in need of weeding. Please give this book a try. You won't be disappointed."
Beth at Beth Yarnall
|WHAT I'M READING Anne Regan, Associate Editor
Windows in Time by M. Jules Aedin
Fate added injury to insult when Jonah Sellers's live-in boyfriend left him: while moving out his ex's belongings, Jonah fell down the stairs and broke his leg. Now his house is a prison, and he's working from home while his sister checks up on him. The only diversion in Jonah's routine is catching the odd glimpse of a man in the apartment across the way taking off his clothes in front of the window.
But then Jonah is distracted by Liam Brooks, the nurse his sister sends over when she goes on vacation. As they dance around their growing attraction, Jonah and Liam begin to wonder about the man in the window. Why is he always dressed in the same clothes? Why is he there one minute and not the next? How is it that he lives in an old woman's apartment? It's while trying to answer these questions that they stumble across a fifty-year-old missing persons case they can't resist trying to solve.
Anne's thoughts: If you can't wait for June's Time is Eternity daily dose, give M. Jules Aedin's Windows in Time a try. An intriguing mix of contemporary romance, ghost story, and film noir—with a dash of Hollywood Babylon thrown in—this story caught me from the first chapter when Jonah, trapped in his '50s-era walk-up with a broken leg, catches a glimpse of a handsome, compelling man in the apartment across the way. Trouble is, the stranger only appears every Tuesday afternoon at exactly 3:21 p.m.—and then vanishes into thin air. When Jonah's home nurse, Liam, turns out to be a repressed ghost hunter, their investigation turns up a half-century-old mystery from the days when being branded a homosexual was even worse than being labeled a Communist. You'll find yourself turning pages in hopes of a happy ending for both the past and present-day protagonists. —Anne Regan, Associate Editor
Launched in May 2007, Dreamspinner Press offers quiet romance, supernatural passion, out-of-this-world lovers, kinky explorations, and heated dreams—a little taste to whet your appetite for romantic homoerotica. We hope you take a little time to be enchanted, romanced, and loved by enjoying the publications of Dreamspinner Press.|
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