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Monday, August 11, 2014

Summer Lover by B.G. Thomas


Title:   Summer Lover
Author: B.G. Thomas
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: July 25th, 2014













  Do you write in more than one genre?

Well, all my stories fit under the genre of MM Romance—at least right now. But if you’re asking are they all—for instance—contemporaries, then my answer would be “no.”

I try and run the gamut of story types. Usually they take place in the “real world” of today, more often than not in Kansas City. What that means is my stories cross over with each other. The guy who owns the coffee shop in “Hound Dog & Bean” can show up when I’m telling you about a first date between to guys who decide to have coffee. I have a ball with it and readers tell me they love it.

But I am crazy about pretty much all genres. Rest assured I will one day finally write my period cowboy story. I will write my science fiction story with the shape changers.

And hey! My first story was about a romance between a modern day man and one who lived three thousand years ago. There is a mummy and a warlock and all kinds of stuff!


What if any, is the hardest part of writing for you?

Sitting down and doing the actual writing!  LOL! I saw something online that made me laugh! It said, “I meant to get some housework done today and then someone responded to my Facebook post!”  That is what happens to me. I sit down to write and then I check my email and suddenly see an interesting article and then five hours have passed and I didn’t do a darned thing. So I try my best to not even open the Internet except for research and save email for once or twice a day.

But when I’m writing? The hardest part is remembering to stop and eat or sleep. I have passed out over my keyboard and woken up to find out I have twenty pages of “kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk” where my nose landed on the letter “K.”

What inspired your new novel?
Well, it was a series of things actually that added up in my mind.

First, I knew that a lot of readers like a series. On the other hand, a lot don’t. So how to please both of them?

Second, I am fascinated with the passing of the seasons. I didn’t used to be. I hated winter with a terrible loathing and loved summer with passion. Winter seemed to take forever to pass and my precious summer flew by in what felt like a couple of weekends. Especially once I started spending most of my time writing when I am not at my Evil Day Job. I rarely got to do all the Summery things I loved to do. Didn’t have time.

But a friend helped me one year to pay strict attention to the passing of the year. I began to see that it really was carefully divided into eight six-week periods (about). I became more and more aware of the beauty of the balance of Mother Nature’s seasons. For the first time I developed a love of that Turning of the Wheel of the Year. I noticed that, “Hey, winter’s not so bad after all.” Not even this past one, which was pretty rough, at least here in the Midwest.

And third, each year I go to a men’s festival out in the woods in the middle of nowhere with about 125-150 gay men. It is very similar to an event that was created by the famous gay activist Harry Hay. He founded what he called the Radical Faerie Movement and it was all about remembering the roots, from the beginning of recorded history and before, of being a gay man.

Ever seen “Torch Song Trilogy?” In it Harvey Fierstein’s drag queen character says, “I'm Among The Last Of A Dying Breed….once the E.R.A. And gay civil rights bills have been passed, me and mine will be swept under the carpets like the blacks done to Amos, Andy, and Aunt Jemima.”

Harry Hay was worried to death that gay people were becoming homogenized into the greater culture as they became more and more accepted. He was afraid we would forget our campy, silly, leather, queenie beginnings. Harry wanted us to embrace our past. To remember! Remember who we were and who we are. From the men who dressed as women to be priestesses in ancient times to the Native American berdashe (two-spirits) to the drag queens before (and after!) the Stonewall Riots.

All these ideas came together…each suggesting a good story, but not necessarily enough on their own to do so. But once I pulled them under one umbrella I knew just what I wanted to do.

Four characters, best friends, popped out of my imagination. I saw that what I was creating would be four books, with each being about one of the four friends and each of them telling their story within a season. Each book would totally stand on its own. No reader would have to read all four books. But the four books would show the passing of a year in their lives and if a reader wanted to follow the whole series, they would get a richer experience and see all four characters continue to grow once their personal story had been told.

And it would finally allow me to write a version of the gay men’s festival I attend each year.

I have never enjoyed writing anything as much, and if readers like them even half as much as I did writing them, they are in for a heck of a treat!

Seasons of Love: Book Two
Scott Aberdeen doesn’t believe in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, or God. Or love—at least, he knows no one will ever love him. After all, he has carried a torch for his best friend Sloan for a decade, hoping his feelings will be returned one day. But when Sloan finds springtime love with another man, Scott’s fantasies are crushed and his skepticism confirmed.

Cedar Carrington, raised by rock star parents, leads a free-spirited, nomadic life, never staying in one place for long. Due to a dark past he refuses to share or even think about, he is willing to let men into his bed for sex, but never for the night.

When Scott finds himself camping in the middle of nowhere with over a hundred men who all believe in love—and faeries and a magickal gay brotherhood—he's pretty sure he’s in the wrong place. And when Cedar connects with cynical, critical Scott, he wonders how he could be falling in for this man of all men. But hearts and lives have been transformed at the Heartland Men’s Festival before, and it might be just the place where two very different men can release their pain and find true love at last.


EXCERPT:

Scott was on the phone doing some research for one of the lawyers when Mr. Cooper—another of the lawyers—stepped into his tiny office. He didn’t leave. In fact, he shut the door and stood there. For some reason it made Scott nervous. What could this be about? Luckily, he was just finishing his call, and it was with great trepidation that he hung up the phone.
“Mr. Cooper?” he asked. “Can I help you?”
“Mind if I sit down?”
Scott shook his head. “Of course not. Please.”
Mr. Cooper, a handsome man, began a few moments of inane chatter. Asking where Scott had gone to lunch, how his Fourth of July was, and finally segueing into his trip to Scott’s recent trip to Los Angeles. Scott answered the questions, baffled that one of his bosses was asking him such questions. Not that the man was indifferent or anything like that, but it wasn’t often he seemed to want to just chat. Cooper was an up-and-comer with Baily, Cranston and Watch and didn’t have time to blab.
And just how did Scott answer the last question?
“It was a disaster,” he blurted before he even knew he was going to admit anything like the truth.
“Oh?” Cooper said. He leaned forward and rested his chin on an upturned palm.
He wanted more? What was he going to say? He flew off to meet a man he hardly knew?
Mr. Cooper nodded. “Is that’s what’s been bothering you lately, Scott? Had the two of you been seeing each other for a while?”
Scott laughed. “For a while? No. Not hardly. We met online, and I flew out to meet him a few weeks later, like a putz.”
“Oh.” Mr. Cooper sat back. He gave Scott a long look.
Scott swallowed hard. “Is there something wrong, Mr. Cooper?”
“Wil,” Mr. Cooper said.
“Will what?”
“Call me Wil, Scott.”
Scott resisted the temptation to call him “Wil-Scott.” Then thought better of it. What the hell? “Okay, Wil-Scott.”
“Wil” laughed. But then his face grew more serious. “Scott. I wanted to talk to you.”
Scott swallowed again. “About what?”
“Scott, there’s been a difference in you lately. I’ve been watching it go on for a while now. And I’ve watched it grow worse. You used to be so… up. Then bit by bit… you’ve changed. Your work has started to suffer.”
Scott’s stomach dropped. “My work?”
“You’re making mistakes.”
His stomach fell onto the ground between his feet. “Mistakes?”
“And you don’t make mistakes. You made a big one on one of Watch’s cases. Luckily, he won it anyway. He was pretty pissed, I have to tell you.”
It felt like Scott’s heart had stopped. Oh, shit. Not good. Not good at all. “Am… am I fired?”
Wil shook his head. “No. Although I had to calm him down.”
Scott shook his head, looked at Wil in confusion. In grateful confusion. “Y-you calmed him down?” He suddenly felt like puking.
“I pointed out how good you were at your job—a regular detective. That this is the first time you’ve made a mistake like—”
“Why, Mr. Cooper? Wil?”
“For lots of reasons, Scott. I like you. And if you really want to know the truth, it’s because we’re the only two gay men in this office, and we need to stick together. Things are a lot better for us these days, but it’s still tough. And you’ve worked here so long. All people would do is ask why you don’t work here anymore. I don’t want that to happen to you.”
Scott suddenly felt like crying.
“But you have to do something,” Wil said.
Here goes. What was it? “What?” he asked.
“You’re going to take a vacation.” The tone in Wil’s voice made it clear it was an order. “At least a week. Somewhere fun. Get away. Meet some men. Or fuck, I don’t care. Go on a Buddhist retreat. Contemplate your belly button.”
“W-what?” Scott was stunned. “You want me to—”
“I want you to get out of here. I want you to relax. I want you to do whatever you need to do so that you can start applying yourself again. It’s important. It’ll save your job. And it will save you.”
“I…. I….”
“Do you hear me, Scott? Vacation. Make it two weeks. Not one fucking day less. As soon as possible….”
“B-but I had plans later on this year. I need my vacation for then—”
“We’ll figure that out then. Now I need you to get out of here. As soon as possible. Starting tomorrow if you—”
“Tomorrow? But I have several things here that—”
“We’ll get someone else to finish—”
“Excuse me, sir. No. I have to finish these. It’s important. One of them concerns a gay man.”
“The Hartford case?”
“Yes.” The man’s lover had died and they weren’t married, and his lover’s family is trying to take everything. They wouldn’t even let him come to the funeral and—
Wil Cooper sighed, narrowed his eyes, and then nodded. “Next week?”
And suddenly Scott saw his friend Peni’s face in mind. The disappointment on that face when  Scott had told the lovely man he didn’t have any vacation time. Well, what do you know…?
Scott laughed. “Would the week after that be okay?”
Wil’s eyes narrowed even more. “Do you have something in mind?”
Scott sighed. “I think so.”
“Something fun?”
No. Not really. But how would Peni feel if he took a vacation and did something beside the campout? And what was he going to do instead? Go to Los Angles again? Right! “I don’t know,” he finally said. “But it’s in the middle of nowhere. I’ll be able to look at my belly button.”
Wil smiled, and it was a nice smile. He really was a handsome guy. And it turned out he was even nicer than Scott had imagined. Wil Cooper had saved his job.
“Good.” He stood up and walked the few steps to the door. He turned back. “Make your reservations today.”
Jeeze. “Okay,” he said. “Today.”
After Wil Cooper left Scott’s office, he found he could only sit there for ten minutes. This was crazy.
You don’t have to go to camp.
He thought of Peni’s face again.
No. Aren’t you done trying to please other men? Go someplace fun! San Francisco. Atlanta. Provincetown. Key-fucking-West.
Then he heard Peni’s words. He couldn’t help it.
“I just thought it might be a way for us to get to know each other better, you know?”  
Shit.
With a shake of his head, Scott pulled out his cell phone. A few seconds later: “Hey, Peni. Guess what? I talked to my boss. He’s given me the time off—”
Peni squealed so loud Scott had to pull his phone away from his ear.


 Author Bio
Greetings! I’m BG Thomas and I live in Kansas City with my husband of over a decade and our fabulous little dog, Sarah Jane. I see my wonderful daughter just often enough to miss her when she isn’t there!
I have a romantic soul and I am extraordinarily lucky to have many friends.
I love romance, science fiction & fantasy, horror and more, and I’ve gone to litertue and media conventions my entire adult life, and been lucky enough to meet many of my favorite writers. I’m a “Star Trek” and Joss Whedon fan from way back!
I have written all my life, it is where I find my joy. In the 90’s, I wrote for gay magazines, but stopped because they wanted me to cut out story and romance, and write only sex.
Then through a few friends, I discovered the growing market of M/M Romance and was thrilled beyond words. FINALLY, a way to write the stories I always wanted to write. Adventure, romantic comedy, science fiction, and more, but with gay characters. And I wouldn’t have to fade to black! People wanted to read the erotic as well. Plot and sex! HURRAY!
I very much believe in “The Law of Attraction” and that “thoughts become things.”
A lot of things all started happening at once for me! I heard the words, “Leap, and the net will appear,” and something re-kindled inside. I sent out a story and was thrilled when it was almost immediately accepted.
I believe that we are divine expressions of the Universe, each and everyone.
“It is never too late! Pursue your dreams! They will come true!”
find true love at last.
 Where can we find your website?

I would like to leave you all with something of a personal note.
Four years ago I had not sold a single story. I had listened to people all my life say to me, “You can’t do that! Do you know how tough the market is? It’s very hard to be a writer. Just to break in is almost impossible! JK Rowling? Do you know how lucky she was even to have her story read in the first place? You need to get a reliable job. One with benefits. Writing is a silly dream.”
Well F#@& that! Every one of us has a dream or dreams. And what I have discovered is that those dreams are our compass pointing to what it is that we should be doing.
Don’t listen to people tell you that you can’t! You can do anything! What your mind can conceive, you can achieve.
Pursue your dreams!
Leap! The net will appear! 

  B.G. will be giving away 5 copies of Book One in the series Spring Affair at the end of the tour.



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