Tuesday, December 23, 2008

New Relaease and Interview

My good friend, Sarah, asked me a few weeks ago, if I would consent to an interview. I didn't see why not, so here it is, on her Blog, Sarah Wagner's Words and Worlds.

Interview with Jaime Samms

This coincides with my new release, out today at Freya's Bower

Buy Poor Boy, Here

Friday, December 19, 2008

Merry Christmas to All

If you're looking for something Christmas-y and a little spicy, I've got just the thing. Freya's Bower has put together a line of free Christmas stories to say thank you to all the readers who make publishing possible and writing worthwhile. Among the offerings this year is a short love story by yours truly.

Same Difference? is the story of one man trying to find his way out of grief.

Friday, December 12, 2008

In the Temple of Nogged

So, today was a lazy day. It gave me a chance to read a short story that's been on my list for quite a while. It was a nice break from the re-write I've been slaving over, and I recomend you go pick it up if you want a quick, hot read. At $1.49 USD, you can hardly beat the price.

Title: In the Temple of Nogged
Author: Murphy Jacobs
Genre: m/m erotica

Summary: Nory's life changed drastically three years ago, and all she wants now is to have back what was taken from her. To get it, she's ready to promise anything. To keep it, she has to follow through on that promise.

My Review: The beginning of this story really had me wondering. I have to be honest, I was a little sceptical. It's pretty obvious what's going to happen, and I thought I would read through to the end without really caring about what happened in between.
Surprise! Although I was right about what the book had in store, I was wrong about how I would feel about it. Jacobs pulled off a very sweet love story inside a very steamy sex display. This turned out to be a fantastic mix of love, spice, and humour, and while I will never be completely convinced of the merit of the underlying premise, that turned out to be less of an issue than I first thought.

My Recommendation: Even inside a dubious setting, love deserves a chance, and so does this story. I really enjoyed it.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

For Lovers of Sweet Romance...

...Involving a boy and a girl.

I know, not what I generally rec, but this is a pretty good bang for the buck. I'm not a rabid fan of het romance, this is hardly a secret, so you won't find me touting it very often, but I had to point out the release of One Touch, One Glance. It's an anthology of eighteen short stories harking back to the days before sex filled every other page of contemporary romance novels. Not that I'm against reading sex, quite the contrary, but to find stories that don't rely on it to boost reader interest and still manage to keep me turning pages, especially when there's no man on man action, is something worth recommending.

These authors have gone back to the basics of what makes romance romance. They tell solid stories where the payoff is being transported a world where love really does conquer and make people happy, without all the angst and drama we seem so addicted to these days. Sure, I'll go back to my angst and drama. I'm just as much an addict as the next reader, but there are a few stories I'll come back to in this book, too. Just to remind myself that some people really do believe in Happily Ever After, and I happen to be one of them.

Congrats to the Authors on a job well done. You can find out more about each of them at their websites:

Gwen Hayes
M.E. Ellis (at her many blogs)
Maryann Miller
Adelle Laudan
K. Starling
Trinity Blacio
Debbie Gould
Ava James
Faith Bicknell-Brown
Savannah Chase
Lisa Alexander Griffin
Kensana Darnell
Brieanna Robertson
Nicolette Zamora
Kathleen MacIver
Missy Lyons
Jambrea Jo Jones

Friday, December 5, 2008

Reality in your Romance...

How much is too much? And the corollary, when does the lack of realistic character action, or reaction, send a story into a tailspin of WTF?

Some background: I recently read a story which I loved, even though there was one element that kind of struck me as unrealistic. I let it go, because the rest of the story really appealed to me. I also wrote a story recently that a friend beta'd and commented that the main conflict the character had was unrealistic and squicky. That's fine. Everyone is entitled to their squicks. She also had issues with the story I read and liked. Again, she likes what she likes, I like what I like, and we often have to agree to disagree, usually with her wandering off shaking her head at my wilful blindness to the reality of life. She's not the only one who has that reaction to me and my stubborn ways. Like Popey, I yam what I yam. I make no apologies.

So. Here's what I'm wondering. When you pick up a romance, and it doesn't matter here what you read, be it het, gay, BDSM, whatever your poison, what do you expect? Do you want the gritty reality of the real world? I'll give a bit of context:

A college boy meets a man, the man takes serious, cruel advantage of his innocence and his inexperience in D/s relationships and severely damages his ability to ever trust anyone again. Boy leaves man, even goes so far as to put man behind bars, and tries to move on with his life. Then he meets another man, a too-good-to-be-true man, and falls, head over heels, despite his reservations. It's been a few years, he wants to put his past behind him and try again.

Here's where the reality check comes in. How far should this story go? How much reality do you want at this point? This young man has been horribly hurt, physically, (though that's long healed), mentally, and emotionally. Realistically, there's little chance he'll ever have a truly normal relationship in his life. But do we really want that much reality? Or do we want him to live Happily Ever After?

In the above example, I chose to give him a probable happy outcome. (Better) My reason? Simple. There are enough unhappy endings in the world, and this is a ­story. Why would I chose to make a make-believe world that is no better than the one I live in?

Which leads me to another question: Is it ok to "ignore" such problems in the world as unsafe sex, homophobia (in my genre), dangerous situations like women accepting help from a man? Let's face it, we all know, in the real world, none of us would hop in a man's car and accept a ride home if we just met him. But in the world of romantic fiction, can we get away with pretending the world is a slightly better place than it really is?

Some would say two men walking down the street holding hands, or a woman giving a man she just met too much information about herself, are just asking for trouble, and in the real world, it would never happen. Because of that, such situations in stories just yank them right out of the tale and send them on their way to the next book.

I would say phooey. Sometimes, I just want a world where condoms aren't necessary, where a man actually wants to help and not harm, and where no one bats an eye no matter who's hand you're holding.

What do you say?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Short Christmas Read

So, while I was sitting around watching my daughter cook and my son play video games, I ran across an email I'd been saving for a few days. I know you're asking yourself why you should care about the state of my inbox, but there's a reason I bring it up.

The email was to one of the groups I belong to from Nita Wick. She was announcing a free Christmas story she had on line. I figured I had nothing else to do, so why not? Glad I did. It's short, very sweet, and worth the few minutes of your time to read.

The Christmas Angel

Go. Read. Feel good, and leave her a comment.

While I'm at it, pick up a copy of The Wagonmaster. I haven't read it yet, but I've heard nothing but good things. It's fast approaching the top of my TBR list.