Home Page

Home Page
Click on Banner

Friday, June 29, 2012

INTERESTING PEOPLE INTERVIEW





Meet: Kris Jacen, Executive Editor/Formatting Director for ManLoveRomance Press and its imprints, Passion in Print Press and Featherweight Press








What are your 2 favorite careers?
 For a hero or me? For a hero – really depends on the book (love cowboys and I've seemed to develop a reputation for editing rock stars). For myself – I've been working in graphic arts/layout/production for over 14 years now and I'm still loving it. I also work as a trainer/educator and that has its good points too.

What is the hardest thing you ever had to do?
 Say goodbye to my husband when he deployed to basically a war zone with the Army, not once but twice in under three years.

Favorite music, song or band
 For music/band: I'm a parrothead (have seen Jimmy Buffet numerous times, last time in Waikiki), still kind of stuck in the 80s sometimes (love Duran Duran), have a few favorite Broadway musicals (RENT, Wicked to name two) and these days I'm loving Josh Turner (Time is Love). For song: my husband sings Brown-eyed Girl to me and we always dance to Wonderful Tonight.
Are you usually late, early or right on time?

 I'm either five minutes early or five late. I multi-task a lot and can lose track of time.

Are you happy with your life for the most part right now?

 For the most part, I'm pretty happy with my life. My husband is retiring from the military this year so some changes are afoot and if I could edit full-time I'd love that.

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?

 I really would love to go to England/Scotland/Ireland and I'd love to visit Australia (save me a room Geoff).

What do you think would be the hardest thing for you to give up on?

 Not sure on this one…something that I do? Reading – I've been reading so long I can't remember ever not reading. It would be hard to give up on my daughters or my husband.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

RED KNIGHT RISING by ALEX IRONROD


LITERARY NYMPHS INTERVIEW

TITLE:  RED KNIGHT RISING
AUTHOR:  ALEX IRONROD
PUBLISHER:  MLR PRESS
GENRE:  HISTORICAL BDSM ADVENTURE
RELEASE DATE:  MAY 2012
MY WEB SITE:  www.alexironrod.com



WHAT INSPIRED THE STORY?

    I have always been a history buff and became interested in gay life in the Middle Ages. How did men get to meet other men with similar sexual kinks in those days? There was no Internet or ‘Personal’ column to help. How could they develop a romantic relationship in what seems to have been such a controlled "straight society"? The powerful Catholic church condemned the sins of sodomy. At times, men were executed, burned alive, if convicted of such sins. The same must have applied to women too -- but alas, their stories are almost unknown. But queer love must have existed.
    RED KNIGHT RISING is my 8th published gay BDSM book, but only the second to go back into the past. It all started when I picked up a copy of "The Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval England" during a visit to London a couple of years ago. There was virtually nothing on gay lifestyles. So I researched further and found some rather intriguing facts.
    We've all seen King Richard the Lionheart in the “Robin Hood” movies or in “The Lion in Winter”. Yes, of course, he was the warrior king, the great battle hero, but he was also gay or at best bisexual, and he was a sadist with the famously violent Plantagenet family temper.
    The Crusades in the Middle Ages were a cross between Advanced Combat Training for knights and a kind of version of the Peace Corps. “Save the Holy Land for Christians from the Muslim invaders by whatever means possible.” The wars threw young men together into long-term, often violent, relationships to survive. Surely some of them must've been queer.
    Out of these possibilities, I slowly developed a tale of two young English knights, one [Harry] about 18 and new to knighthood and man-sex. The other [Bruce] was slightly older and much more experienced in war and fucking. They are drawn together, almost by chance, and fall in love -- or is it merely lust?


    Richard the Lionheart crosses their path, taking the more experienced man as his sometime bed-mate for BDSM games in exchange for a job as cavalry commander in his crusader army, and for a title and monies, which Bruce desperately needs. Bruce tries to shield young Harry from Richard’s sex games, as they develop their own romantic relationship as Dom and sub. They and their troops follow Richard on the slow journey from England through France, fighting across much of the known world and on the Mediterranean Sea until they reach the Holy Land.
    But Richard is as determined as he is devious -- and how can young Harry resist his King's commands or Bruce save both of them from The Lionheart’s sex games to preserve their own relationship? RED KNIGHT RISING is an epic adventure, from royal tournaments to desert warfare, with conflicts as contemporary as today and romantic passions that have to guarded as well as fulfilled.

EXCERPT FROM “RED KNIGHT RISING”

    It was Christmas night in the year of Our Lord 1189 and being celebrated with laughter and cheer in London's Palace of Westminster. Harry, the White Knight, had every reason to celebrate as he followed the page along the draughty corridors of the palace. That morning he had been initiated into knighthood, dubbed by King Henry himself. Now he was on his way to be finally initiated into man-sex by his Red Knight, Bruce of Berwick. His heart was thumping so loudly in his chest that he was sure the page could hear it, and he began to feel a heat spreading up from his crotch towards to his bursting head. His cock was trying to rise in his tight hose and he batted it down in his anxiety. His palms and forehead were sweating in the cool passageways. The young guide finally stopped, bowed, and indicated the nearest door.

"Sir, my Master awaits you."

Harry's spurs clinked as he pushed the wood open. It wasn't a large chamber and the big bed dominated it. Tapestries hung on the walls and the warm air smelled of pine from the blazing fire and taper candles. He rubbed his sweaty hands on his surcoat as the door closed and looked around him. Bruce was standing in the shadows cast by the fire. He was totally naked and fully erect. He smiled lazily.

"Welcome, my lord, I promised you a special ending to your day of new honors and experiences. Come over here."

Harry moved towards him as if in a trance, then clutched the other man tightly, as if he might vanish in the night. Bruce laughed, pulling him within those mighty arms and opening his mouth to him. The new knight sucked Bruce's lips and lapped at his tongue, his hands exploring the muscled torso. The Red Knight's engorged prick banged into Harry's covered genitals, where his own cock immediately responded.

"Let's get you out of your knightly attire, so that I can really look at you as I want to see you. Let me help you out of your uniform of purity into your own pure nakedness."

Harry was all thumbs, quivering with excitement. Together they removed the traces of the worldly day he had just experienced. Soon he was as naked and newborn as the other, and the warmth of Bruce's body and the heat of the fire gave a glow to his limbs and enflamed his cock. He drank in his Red Knight's craggy beauty and lingeringly traced the scars on his face and arms, before moving on.

Harry's kisses spread from his mentor's mouth, around his eyes, his nose, his face, then down to those large brown nipples in their mat of tawny hair. Bruce reached down and massaged Harry's dick until it stood straight out like his. Taking it in one hand, he led the newly minted lord to the bed, and pushed him face down onto the fur covering.

"You still want this, Harry; you still want me to take you?"

"Yes, yes, oh yes, more than before, if that's possible."

"You know it will hurt this first time? My dick is large and my need is great too. But I'm going to stretch your hole, first with my fingers covered in this grease and then with this leather plug.
We will pleasure one another while your chute learns to expand. So prepare yourself, my own Henry."

Harry's legs hung over the side of the big bed and he jerked as he felt a well-greased big finger slide into that velvet hole. He moaned as he felt the hand of his Red Knight move inside him and was silenced by a hard slap on his arse. Then a second finger was added and gently spread his walls. This made him remember the pleasure of that previous time on the warm rock in the autumn sunshine and he relaxed with a sigh.

Bruce's other hand was ruffling through Harry's newly shorn hair, caressing his face and pushing three fingers into the new knight's mouth for him to suck on while his other hand widened the arse-hole. After ten minutes or so of stimulating his whole body, Bruce slid out those fingers, stood back, spreading some more grease on that delicate hole before he gently started to insert the leathercock. At first Harry resisted, his muscles trying to close down the entrance, but the Red Knight's voice and hands skillfully soothed his body and mind. The young man's virgin torso began to sweat as it accepted more of the foreign intruder and his muscles allowed the log entry, testing their new-found strength against the leather until it sank fully home.

Satisfied with his pupil's progress, Bruce turned him onto his back and lowered his own sweating and naked body beside him on the bed. Their two cocks stood out, tall and proud; the master began to play with his student's penis and encouraged him to handle the other thick shaft. Once again Harry took hold of the mighty muscle, marveling at its velvety texture, pulsing and thrusting in his fingers. The feeling was intoxicating and the younger man began to wriggle with pleasure, crushing his arse-hole and the leather spike that filled it against the furs, groaning and tossing his head in delight.

His Red Knight took his jaw in his other big hand, holding him still for a long deep kiss. Harry welcomed the tongue in his mouth hole, while the leathercock stretched his other hole. He sucked on Bruce's tongue and began to exchange saliva with him as they continued their increasingly fiery embrace. Pricks broke free and banged happily against one another. They were two male animals, rutting together and grunting with pride and desire. The pains he'd initially felt from the leather plug had dissolved into shudders of pleasure as his body continued to accept the log inside him.

"Now, my new young lord, your time has come. Roll over once more and let me thrust these bolsters beneath your chest. Get your face down and seize an edge of the furs in your teeth for your Master is ready to mount you. Raise up your well-greased hole for me - now."

Breathless and yet panting, Harry did as his Master commanded,
while Bruce reached under him to pull on his small nipples. As he gasped in surprise, the leather log inside him began to slip out. Suddenly he was empty and wanting – wanting a real man's prick inside him, a real poleax to penetrate his weakened defenses.

His Master knelt behind him, the perfect knight with the perfect weapon to impose his needs on him. He felt the hard knob of Bruce's muscle pushing at his entrance.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Second Time Lucky by Ethan Day




Literary Nymphs Interview


Title:  Second Time Lucky
Author:  Ethan Day
Publisher:  MLR Press
Genre:  Romantic Comedy
Release Date:  6/8/12







What inspired the story?

The inspiration behind Second Time Lucky is a little more personal to me. The story is about old boyfriends from college who run into one another 15 years later and get a second chance to try it all over again. There was a little inspiration taken from my first college boyfriend who I still remember fondly to this day – he was one of those guys you think about years later and wonder, what if? The character of Luke Landon was inspired by a friend who passed away from AIDS back in the mid-nineties... one of those I met and was immediately infatuated with. We were never more than friends as he wasn’t into me that way, but he had this amazing charisma…was so much fun to be around…and he was a wild man when he drank too much.
I borrowed a few of his qualities for Luke and retooled that college ex of mine for the character of Owen, adding in a healthy dose of my, What If?, and Second Time Lucky was born.



EXCERPT:

I could only imagine what a pathetic, sad vision I made sitting at the bar, completely surrounded by happy party-goers and drunks, yet so obviously all alone. Funny thing was, I didn’t believe anyone else could be bothered to notice. Another real ripper of a birthday had come and was now mercifully nearing an end. I was birthday cursed, that much I’d discovered a long, longtime ago. This year had proven no different.
Thirty fucking six years old. I might as well be dead. Wait, what am I thinking? I am dead—at least in this town.
It’s the biggest problem gay men of a certain age face having lived all their life in the same damn city. From Cub Scouts to college, and beyond, I’d screwed my way from one end of town and back again so many times over the years that damned if there was anyone left I hadn’t had sex with. I was well on my way to becoming the dirty old man waiting around for the latest batch of college freshmen to move into town—fresh off the fields and farms all pink and eager to learn anything Daddy was willing to teach.
My stomach churned at that horrendous thought, so I quickly took another swig off my long neck attempting to drown it at inception as opposed to allowing it to take root and blossom. My lip curled seeing Craig pass by with the latest model of gay hanging on his arm.
My most recent ex-boyfriend. What a dirt bag. I should be celebrating the fact that we were over, yet somehow him being here on this night of all nights, and with a new boyfriend, made me less than jolly. I surveyed the room once more, shaking my head. It was like a who’s who of the men Luke Landon had dated and dumped. This was the third bar I’d been to and each one of them held a different selection of my exes.
This kind of thing didn’t happen often. It was quite rare—and most unpleasant. It was as if the mystical gay energy that normally held the constructs of our flaming world together had come apart at the seams. Time itself had been bent and twisted into this hideously ugly Ebenezer Scrooge-like reality upon which all of my past exploits were now being paraded in front of my face as if to remind me what a ho-bag loser I was.
Usually, gay men stayed on the same cycle—similar to the menstrual variety in that we did our best to avoid the achy cramps that came with running into our past failures. We instinctively knew what nights and times to avoid certain bars. It was something we normally didn’t have to work at. The same way the moon orbits the earth which in turn does the same with regard to the sun, we managed to avoid one another without needing to consciously think.
For a city that held over a half a million people and a plethora of gay bars, Middleton usually provided ample room for the homosexual animals to roam freely within their desired packs, without fear of awkward confrontations or sideways glances. Tonight however, was like a full eclipse or Haley’s Comet—that once in a blue moon alignment of events that created the hell in which I now resided.
I signaled the bartender that I was ready for another beer and shot, wondering where the hell all the astrological references in my brain were coming from. I groaned, pouting in my pity party for one, recognizing the latest Kylie Minogue song which began pumping over the club’s sound system.
I could feel my bottom lip pooching out. I love this song, damn it!
I gazed longingly at the dance floor wishing I could go Cha Cha my blues away. I sighed, knowing it was safest for everyone if I kept my seat. The bone-breaking birthday bash of 2008 had taught me that. A broken ankle for me, a broken wrist for the boy I was dancing with, and three others, who suffered minor scrapes and bruises, all taken down by the power of the curse.
Like I’m supposed to know the metal railing around the dance floor wasn’t meant to be straddled and ridden like a bucking bronco?
No one was sued or anything, but I did ruin any chances at a future with my dancing partner. Don’t expect a happily-ever-after when you accidently break a man’s masturbation hand—life lesson learned.
Peter sat my drinks down in front of me, smiling in that sexy way they all do when they’re working you for a tip. I tossed him a ten and a five spot.
A gay bartender named Peter. I shook my head wondering if his parents appreciated the foreshadowing. “Keep the change.”
“Thanks!” he yelled over the loud music adding the obligatory “stud” onto the end. It felt less than genuine considering the sexy glimmer in Peter’s eye had already moved on to the patron sitting next to me.
“T and T with two limes,” the guy said. “And salt the rim,” both he and the bartender said simultaneously—the bartender mocking my new neighbor while nodding that he knew the drill all too well.
I managed a smile when the guy reached across the bar, smacking Peter in the arm.
“Hey Luke, what up?”
I glanced over at Rick, whose last name I could never seem to remember. “Nothing, aside from my bar tab.”
Rick grinned; rubbing his hands together as he slowly looked around the room, sizing up the meat in the market. He was obviously having a much better night than I was with my ghosts of boyfriends past…on parade.
Rick was what I referred to as a bar-buddy. We only managed a social life with one another while out clubbing. It wasn’t necessarily a conscious decision so much as some sort of instinctual vibe we each put off. I’d long believed we gays were able to sense favorable pheromones in one another, similar to the way dogs sniff each other’s asses to ascertain whether or not they might play well together. Unlike our canine compadres, however, we manage to confine our ass sniffing to private quarters…most of the time.
Rick and I merely recognized we wouldn’t have anything in common outside the confines of these walls. We didn’t swap numbers or follow each other on Twitter or Facebook. He wasn’t the kind of friend that would even know today was my birthday.
Peter slapped a cocktail napkin down onto the highly polished wooden bar before setting down the rocks glass, which was already sweating as beads of condensation ran down the side.
Rick tossed him his credit card. “Start me a tab?”
“Sure thing, stud,” Peter said before moving on to other pastures, still green with the almighty dollar.
Seriously? Are we all one? How many actual studs could one bar handle?
“Oh, Happy Birthday, by the way!” Rick exclaimed, as if having read my thoughts from mere moments ago, deciding to make a liar out of me.
“How the hell did you know it was my birthday?” I asked.
“I saw it on Facebook earlier today.” He said it nonchalantly.
I rolled my eyes before downing my shot of tequila. Apparently I had too many face-friends, considering I could no longer recall who was or wasn’t among them.
“Geez dude,” Rick mumbled. “It’s like an ex-BF convention rolled into town.”
“You too?” I asked, picking up my beer while trying to remember who he’d been with in the past.
“No way, not me!” Rick shivered the thought and took a sip from his glass, licking the salt off the rim with the tip of his tongue. “You!”
Tell me something I don’t know, asshole.
I huffed slightly, wondering how the hell he knew me so well.
“Oh man, there’s Marty, I haven’t seen him around in a long time.”
I sighed watching my fifth-ex-removed stroll languidly through the center of the bar looking all fresh and fine.
Rick took another drink while eye-fucking Marty within an inch of his life. “I always had a thing for him, you know?”
I should’ve known better than to ask on a night like this. I most certainly did not know that. Another gift I’ll not be able to return. Whoever said information was power was a total liar.
I took a good long drink from my very cold beer.
Rick placed his hand on my shoulder. “It’s nice to see that Chance guy out and about, huh?”
I glanced over to where Chance Crawford was sitting, surrounded by men that had never paid him any mind before his lover, who’d been an anchorman for one of the local affiliates was killed, hit by a car last year.
I couldn’t help but think he looked as miserable as I felt, which in turn made me realize what a heel I was being. There was a guy who had a legitimate reason to be down in the dumps. A few exes…well okay a few dozen, but still. No one I cared for was dead.
“Say, would it be weird if I were to ask Marty out?” Rick asked, not even bothering to look me in the face as he was too busy staring at the ex in question.
Okay, my statement would still be true, even if I were to strangle Rick. No one I cared for would be dead.
I sighed, near drunk and newly determined to finish my beer and go the hell home. “Knock yourself out.”
I smiled, hoping that birthday wish would come true.
“Thanks man!” Rick said, picking up his drink before teasing me by tripping over the leg of his barstool and stumbling face forward.
He managed to not fall on his head though. Still…not exactly a Rico Suave sorta move. I took a teensy bit of pleasure from the fact people were now laughing at his clumsiness.
Alone once more, I chastised myself for having tempted fate by going out on my birthday to begin with. My so-called loser friends and co-workers were supposed to have met me for dinner earlier in the evening at La Mancha’s. One by one they each called, having to cancel at the last minute, leaving me alone at the large ass table wearing a huge sombrero while drowning my sorrows in a pitcher of mango margaritas.
“Happy Birthday to me,” I mumbled, as the strangest sensation shot through my chest for like the first time ever.
Me, Luke Landon, one year older and newly decrepit…now that I was practically forty…a one-time party boy and player…heart breaker extraordinaire was actually experiencing a new emotion.
I was lonely?
It seemed unfathomable as I took another swig from my bottle while contemplating the horror of it. I shrugged, downing the last bit of beer.
Perhaps I’m just drunk?
I started to laugh, pushing the beer bottle away before reaching for my phone to call a cab.
I cocked my head to the side hearing this static-like sound coming from behind me, followed by the words, “Put your clothes back on and get back into your vehicle. The park has now closed.”
The smile spreading across my face was immediate and uncontrollable as I’d only heard those words one time before, and only two other people would’ve been able to repeat them to me. The park ranger who’d quietly driven his Jeep Wrangler down to the lake, surprising us with the floodlights he’d turned on—illuminating our nakedness as we frolicked in one another’s arms on the beach or Owen West my co-frolickee…frolicker-er?
Wait, is that even a word?

Where can we find your website?

Friday, June 22, 2012

INTERESTING PEOPLE INTERVIEW

Meet: Laura Baumbach
Owner of ManLoveRomance Press
Founded in January of 2007
A pioneer of the M/M romance genre






What are your 2 favorite careers?
Nursing and writing

What is the hardest thing you ever had to do?
Quitting my day job.  Things go so busy at the press I had to give up some and my husband and kids said they weren't going anywhere, <g> that left saying goodbye to 34 years of being a RN.

Favorite music, song or band
I'm a little hooked on Maroon Five right now

Are you usually late, early or right on time?

On time or early. I detest being late. I'd rather stay home than be late.



Are you happy with your life for the most part right now?

Very happy. I'm married to a man I love for the last 30 years, I have 2 loving sons that are good men, an amazing grandson, great friends, my publishing house is doing well and I love being an author in the category I write in. Life is good.



If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Where ever it was 72 degrees constantly with a breeze and low humidity. Anyone know where that is?


What do you think would be the hardest thing for you to give up on?

Wow, a hard question. I can't think of anything that matters to me that I would give up on. 





 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Token of Time by Ethan Day


Literary Nymphs Interview



Title:  A Token of Time
Author:  Ethan Day
Publisher: MLR Press
Genre: Paranormal/Historical/Romance
Release Date:  4/20/12







What inspired the story?

A combination of things came together and  brought this story to life for me – a daydream on a rainy afternoon was the first bit of inspiration which came fortuitously right around the time I’d watched an older film I’ve always loved but hadn’t seen in ages called, Somewhere in Time. Those two things mixed together into this unstoppable fantasy in my head. The film is a sad and romantic love story; people should definitely check it out if they haven’t seen it before.
 The focus of that daydream revolved around Tab Hunter’s autobiography, Tab Hunter Confidential: The Making of a Movie Star, which I’d recently finished reading at the time. Those outside influences came together, infecting my brain with a story I couldn’t rid myself of until I sat down and started writing. It’s a much more complicated story with a lot going on and it really came to me in pieces over several years time.
For anyone who has become used to my usual shtick, this book will likely be a teensy bit of a shock, lol.

EXCERPT:

The coffee table was cluttered with empty bottles of liquor, an ashtray overflowing with cigarette butts, crumpled fast food bags, wadded up wrappers, and week-old cartons filled with half eaten food that had begun to stink. Zachary rubbed his itchy nose before picking up a cigarette and lighting the tip. Fumbling, he dropped the lighter, watching as it bounced across the hardwood floor.
“Fuck,” he muttered, the cigarette dangling from between his lips.
Listening to the sizzle of burning tobacco as he inhaled, Zachary emptied the last of the liquor into his glass before leaning back into the leather sofa.
The apartment felt as empty as he did. Nick was gone and wouldn’t be coming back. Taking in a sharp breath, the pain cut through his chest and he wiped away the tear running down his cheek.
He flicked the ashes onto the floor.
It is my fault.
Rebecca was right about that. Had Zachary known it would lead to this, he would’ve left Nick behind and never allowed him to become entangled in his family’s twisted bullshit. Nick’s mother, Janet had worked for Zachary’s family so they’d known one another their entire lives – had grown up together.
Nick was a year older and had been straight from the time he’d hit puberty, or so Zachary believed. He’d bedded multiple girls from school and acted as though he’d loved every minute of it. Then Zachary turned sixteen and everything changed.
His life, their lives, hadn’t been the same since.
Zachary stared at his hands, convinced what he could do with them wasn’t worth the price he’d been forced to pay. His gift, this curse which Zachary had never wanted was ironically now the only way for them to be together. Nick could only be found by searching through the past and Zachary’s memories were all that remained.
Zachary pulled himself off the sofa, pausing momentarily until the dizziness subsided. Stumbling over to the fireplace mantle, he grabbed the large manila envelope they’d handed him after being released from the hospital. It held Nick’s personal effects from the day he’d died. Zachary had refused to open it before, but its contents were the things Nick used every day and therefore held the most energy. Zachary needed to see him – to be with him again – if only for a little while.
Ripping open the envelope as he made his way back to the sofa, Zachary removed Nick’s watch from the bag. The glass was scratched. It held no value to anyone other than Zachary – it was a gateway to their past.
He shoved some trash out of the way, clearing a spot before placing the watch gently onto the tabletop, and then reached into the bag, listening to the keys clinking before pulling out the brown wallet. The leather along the sides was distressed and worn smooth from daily, long term use. It was the only one Nick had ever owned.
Zachary held it under his nose and breathed in the scent.
The pain of loss was only manageable because of the booze.
He could feel the tears welling up, placing the wallet next to the watch, followed by Nick’s keys and cell phone. He took one last drag off the cigarette before snuffing it out by jamming it into the overflowing ashtray.
 It wasn’t fair. People shouldn’t be taken away like this.
Nick was only twenty-one, far too young and his life had never really been his own.
Zachary dropped the envelope onto the floor after removing the final item. He rolled the ring between his fingers, thinking it was priceless. Silly considering it was made from some sort of plastic polymer and molded into the shape of a coyote. The animal’s body created the circle, its head resting on the tail.
Glancing at the ring on his finger, which was similar aside from being green and shaped like a lizard, Zachary took another deep breath. He rubbed the tips of his fingers over the textured, rounded surface of Nick’s ring and closed his eyes.
Normally he would concentrate on a specific question that required answering, something which would steer his vision toward a specific time or event in the past. It was the best way to control his psychic ability. This time he didn’t do that—willing to see whatever came to him.
He rid his mind of all other thoughts and concentrated on Nick as the light began to flicker behind his eyes. A blinding stark white light flashed and the vision came slowly into focus. Zachary could feel the smile stretching across his face watching his memories of the past play out like a film inside his head – a movie that only he could see.
He watched silently, transported back in time to the day he and Nick walked through the aisles of the outdoor market – could almost feel it as the backs of their hands brushed together, as if it had only just occurred. They smiled at one another and Zachary was now able to experience how badly Nick had wanted to hold hands in that moment.
Zachary remembered the day—their trek through the desert several months after arriving in New Mexico. Zachary missed living there—they’d been happy for a while, before he’d opened his mouth and ruined everything. He was like a plague on the people who loved him, innocent of any wrong doing yet somehow to blame nevertheless.
Reliving the day from a fly-on-the-wall perspective, Zachary looked on as he and Nick meandered through the market, which had been awful. One of those tourist traps filled with cheap southwestern tchotchkes – the type grandparents enjoyed perusing when purchasing mementos of their vacation or gifts for their grandchildren.
They were both laughing after Nick put on a garish Indian headdress that looked less than authentic with its neon colored dyed feathers.
Nick winked. “Wanna play cowboys and Indians?”
The owner of the store and the other shoppers had begun to watch them as Nick was creating quite a scene – mainly due to the fact Zachary had been unable to stop laughing.
It was the first time they’d been comfortable letting their guard down long enough to simply have fun. They’d been living in New Mexico for almost nine months without incident and had begun to believe themselves safe.
Nick removed the headdress and placed it back on the hook, before moving further down the aisle where he began digging through a plastic bin. He pulled something out of it and smiled,  watching Zachary out of the corner of his eye.
Without warning, Nick thrust his hand in Zachary’s face, smiling like a little boy while proudly displaying his offering.
It intensified Zachary’s sadness, experiencing what Nick had been feeling back then – so light and carefree – the depth of his feelings for Zachary.
“Would you marry me if I spent a whole four dollars and ninety-nine cents on this ring for you?” Nick asked, looking quite serious.
Zachary watched himself grin while staring at the cheesy lizard ring. “How could I say no? Of course, you’d have to wear one as well.”
“I think I’m good without,” Nick said, trying to keep a straight face.
“Well I’m not tainting my hand with this cheese while you get off scot-free.”
He watched himself digging through the same bin, retrieving the coyote ring.
“I’ll wear the coyote ring and you can keep that snazzy lizard for yourself.” Zachary smiled, deciding the brown one wasn’t as noticeable as the lime green colored lizard. He nudged his head down toward Nick’s crotch. “Your lizard’s bigger than mine, so it suits you.”
Nick fell to his knees dramatically, taking Zachary’s hand. “But I picked this out specially for you!”
Zachary was attempting to shush the man who was now yelling loud enough for everyone to overhear, looking on in horror, despite his uncontrollable laughter.
He’d forgotten how big of a ham Nick could be, like the boy had seen one too many Adam Sandler movies and couldn’t resist the occasional juvenile outburst.
“Consider it my lizard’s way of marking its territory.” Nick slipped the hideous thing onto Zachary’s finger before bellowing out in a deep, horribly executed southern accent, “Would you do me the honor of becoming my betrothed?”
Zachary could feel the tears running down his face witnessing his reaction, doubled over in laughter, attempting to cover Nick’s mouth since he wouldn’t stop yelling out ridiculously corny declarations of love. He wasn’t sure what had gotten into the boy, but everyone was staring at them and looking mostly un-amused.
He’d gotten used to never seeing that side of Nick’s personality after their lives became one long nightmare. It made that particular day seem all the more special to him in retrospect.
Zachary began to distance himself from the vision, unable to handle any more. The happiness he’d experienced at the time brought nothing but pain to him now, knowing they’d never have moments like that again. The picture faded into a flicker and Zachary forced his eyes open, sniffling as his sight turned from the vibrant color of his past to the darkened reality of his present.
Zachary’s lip quivered, trying to hold it all in. He wanted another drink and a cigarette with equal voracity, but remembered he was out of vodka. He then saw the lighter laying well out of reach where he’d dropped it earlier and cursed.
Sinking back into the cushions, he stared off into space realizing this was all that was left. There was no point going on, aside from making sure Rebecca never got what she wanted. Even that couldn’t spark much of a fire in him now.
Zachary slumped over onto his side and curled up into a ball, making himself as small as possible. It was all he could handle, to hide away and attempt to forget he’d once had something special. Nothing could right that wrong and he’d suffer the guilt with every breath for as long as he lived.

Where can we find your website?


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Passion in Print by Karenna Colcroft

Literary Nymphs Interview

Title: Beta Test
Author: Karenna Colcroft
Publisher: Passion in Print
Genre: Paranormal
Release Date: June 16, 2012










What inspired the story?
It was a case of character hijacking. In my M/M paranormal series Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat, one of the secondary characters started demanding his own story. Justin Ruel, the Beta of the City Pack in Boston, Massachusetts, struck me as an interesting character, and definitely straight, so I talked to the owner of MLR Press/Passion in Print Press about doing a heterosexual romance with Justin as the hero. She okayed it, and then I needed a heroine. The “what if” part of my brain kicked in and I started wondering what if a werewolf pack Beta found out that his mate was human? So Tareth McConnell was born, and once I had her, I had the story and conflict.

The events in Beta Test take place concurrently with those in Veggie Burgers to Go, which is the second full-length novel in the Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat series, and the RWDEM characters make cameo appearances in Beta Test.

EXCERPT:
Tareth could barely see where she was going as she ran into the woods on a muddy, puddled path. She didn’t care. She had to get away from Justin. She couldn’t believe he’d brought her all the way out here, to the middle of freaking nowhere, to tell her he was a werewolf.
A werewolf, for fuck’s sake! Those didn’t exist anywhere, let alone in the middle of freaking Boston, Massachusetts. She’d fallen for the guy, and now he’d turned out to be a lunatic. And she had no way to get home unless the lunatic took her.
The rain poured down on her. She didn’t care about that either. She would rather be soaking wet than stuck in the house with Justin. In there, she might have been able to find a place away from him, but he would have been able to find her too easily. She didn’t know what he might do to her.
He hadn’t given her any indication of that so far. As connected as she’d felt to him, surely she would have known if he was dangerous. Or crazy.
But he had to be crazy. The alternative was that he had told her the truth, and that just wasn’t possible.
A huge pine with rain-slicked bark loomed ahead of her, and Tareth adjusted her route to avoid it. Too late, she saw the root sticking out of the ground. The muddy path gave her no purchase as she attempted to stop herself. She skidded forward, caught her right foot on the root, and ended up face-first in the mud.
“Tareth!”
At the sound of Justin’s voice behind her, Tareth’s heart raced. She couldn’t tell from the single word whether he was angry or worried, and she wasn’t sure she wanted to find out. She had to keep going. If she was lucky, he wouldn’t be able to catch up to her. The path she’d found had to lead somewhere. If she kept going, she might be able to find another house where someone would be able to help her.
She tried to scramble to her feet. A sharp pain in her right ankle sent her back to the ground, this time sitting up in a patch of damp, sticky mud. Damn it!
“Stupid fucking root,” she muttered under her breath. It wasn’t quite as satisfying as yelling at the top of her lungs would have been, but she didn’t dare to yell. Not with Justin so close.
“Tareth?”
His voice was nearer now, and he sounded worried. That didn’t mean she wanted him to find her. Tareth tried to stay perfectly still, hoping that somehow he wouldn’t notice her if he came up the same path she’d used. Of course, she knew how futile that hope was. How could he miss the mud-covered woman sitting there glaring at a root?
“There you are.” He rounded the curve in the path. At first Tareth saw only his shape. When he came nearer she saw the relief in his expression. And behind it, the same tenderness with which he’d looked at her earlier. At the sight, her heart rose, and she couldn’t help smiling.
Then she remembered why she was out there and the smile faded. She couldn’t get away from him now. Worse, she would need his help to return to the house.
Despite her fear, she knew he would help her. He wouldn’t let anything bad happen to her. Even though she worried that he was the bad thing that might happen. Looking into his eyes, she could see how much he cared about her. And she felt the same way.
She still loved him. Even if he was crazy. So what does that say about me?
Where can we find your website?
My website is www.karennacolcroft.com. People can also find me, chat with me, rant at me, or whatever on my Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/261093317316839/. And I have a monthly e-mail newsletter which includes info about my upcoming events and releases, exclusive excerpts, and a contest each month; people can sign up via the form on the home page of my website if they want to receive it.