Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sunday Brunch Blog - 12/29/13

saupload_mad_20hatter_20tea_20partyThis week, we’re looking at our most treasured holiday Memories, and it’s a little different, because instead of a book cover, one of one my very favorite writers gives us a treasured memory! Thanks Rick for sharing something so personal with us. And Jambrea? Love your story! You keep rocking that holiday goodness! I BELIEVE!


Last week’s winner? Chris !!!


This week my guests will share their answers with us, and you, gentle readers, can give your answer to my question in the comment section below. I’ll choose one random person from the comments and reward them with an ebook surprise, it’s that simple!


Tell me what your answer to today’s question would be in the comments, and you could win an e-book!


This weeks question is: What is your favorite Holiday Memory? 



Ricky Christmas 1962Christmas Snapshot: 1962


© 2013 by Rick R. Reed


When I look at this picture, it evokes a lot—happy memories, a sense of loss, a bit of wonder, and gratitude. That’s me in the center with the cowboy hat, big ears, and tricycle. To my right is my mom, behind me my dad, and to my left is my sister Susan. It’s Christmas 1962.


Why does this old photograph induce such a complex mixture of emotion? For one, both of my parents are gone. My dad passed from a heart attack in 1990 and Mom succumbed to cancer in 2007. Seeing them both so young and beautiful only makes me miss them more. The death of a parent leaves in its wake a hole that can never be filled. For the child who survives, the world is never quite the same. So looking at this picture, back through many, many years, fills me with sadness and loss, for the family I once had.


But I don’t want to be maudlin. This same picture and same memory is also joyous. Look at our happiness! I am grateful I grew up with this quirky, sometimes dysfunctional unit, grateful I had a mother who showed me, every day, that love and family were the most important treasures we could have.


There’s a kind of innocence here, too. It was the early 1960s and big changes were in store for the world and for each of us. It would take a biography-length post to fill you in on those, but it’s enough to say that the picture reminds me of a little boy who could be filled with simple happiness on Christmas morning by a little magic, lots of love, and the promise of future whose joys and sorrows had yet to be revealed.


Giveaway


My gift, to one commenter below (chosen by ZAM) will be a free copy of my Christmas story, “Matches,” published by MLR Press. It’s my m/m homage to the fairy tale, “The Little Match Girl.” Here’s the blurb:


Christmas Eve should be a night filled with magic and love. But for Anderson, down on his luck and homeless in Chicago’s frigid chill, it’s a fight for survival. Whether he’s sleeping on the el, or holed up in an abandoned car, all he really has are his memories to keep him warm-memories of a time when he loved a man named Welk and the world was perfect. When Anderson finds a book of discarded matches on the sidewalk, he pockets them. Later, trying to keep the cold at bay hunkered down in a church entryway, Anderson discovers the matches are the key to bringing his memories of Welk, happiness, and security to life. Within their flames, visions dance-and perhaps a reunion with the man he loved most.


Purchase Matches  Amazon  MLR Press


~*~


OnceUponaPrince_WDI have two great holiday memories. One from when I was a kid and one from when my son, PMan, was a baby.


Many moons ago I was at that age when I wasn’t sure if I really believed. My brother who is two years younger than me was in the same boat. We were both saying how Santa wasn’t real, but we weren’t a hundred percent sure of it.


That night we reluctantly went to bed—like every Christmas because you’re too excited to sleep and all you can think about is opening presents. I had settled down into my bed when what did I hear? A clatter—On. The. ROOF! Oh my goodness SANTA IS REAL!!! That was all I could think about until I finally fell asleep. My brother and I were both so excited.


Now years later I figured it was just my step-dad on the roof trying to help us believe for one more year. Well—it was my step-dad, but he was up there because we had a chimney fire and he was trying to put it out before it spread.


So we could have had a very different Christmas that year.


The other memory was from just after PMan was born. I really wasn’t feeling the Christmas Spirit. I didn’t want to put decorations up and I was even thinking about not setting up the tree. PMan was a baby, he wouldn’t know any difference.


One day I came home from work and walked into a wonderfully smelling house with decorations set up. My mom had driven into town and put on a wonderful roast in the crock pot. There was Christmas music playing in the background and I was ready for the season. — Author Jambrea Jo Jones (*Editor’s note. ZAM LOVES JAM)


Purchase Once Upon A Prince  Amazon   MLR Press


 



Sunday Brunch Blog - 12/29/13

Monday, December 23, 2013

And the winners ARE... Drumroll please...

ImageYAY! I get to announce the winners to the Lost and Found Blog tour!


Riptide $20 Gift Card:


Suzanne


Playlist gift cards ($10) from iTunes:


Nina, Sherry, and Sophia


All the gift cards have been sent via email from Riptide and iTunes, so if you think you didn’t receive yours check your spam filters and then let me know. I’ll double check. Thanks to everyone who participated and made this so much fun for me. Thanks to my friends, my readers, all the wonderful bloggers and reviewers. May you be well, happy holidays, and I wish you the best of all good things in the New Year.


XOXOXO


ZAM



And the winners ARE... Drumroll please...

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Sunday Brunch Blog 12/22/13

saupload_mad_20hatter_20tea_20partyThis week, we could use a little help from the Spirit of Christmas Past, because we’re talking about spending time with (long dead) authors we love. Have you ever wanted to ask Franz Kafka if if drugs played any role in the writing of The Metamorphosis or do you want to know if Mary Shelley would be awesome to party with? (‘Cause I am SURE she would be.)


This week we’re talking about interviewing our literary heroes even if they’re dead.


Last week’s winner? Beth B.!!!


This week my guests will share their answers with us, and you, gentle readers, can give your answer to my question in the comment section below. I’ll choose one random person from the comments and reward them with an ebook surprise, it’s that simple!


Tell me what your answer to today’s question would be in the comments, and you could win an e-book!


This weeks question is: If you could interview long-dead authors, who would you invite?


A New Orleans Christmas


Rueful, most vexed, that tender skin

Should accept so fell a wound,

He stamped and cracked stalks to the ground

Which had caused his dear girl pain.


– Sylvia Plath, “Bucolics” (http://www.internal.org/Sylvia_Plath/Bucolics)


During the holiday season, it seems a bit morbid to be focusing on dark works, but I’ve been told many times I possess a dark side. When Z.A. Maxfield posed the question about interviewing long-dead authors, I immediately thought of Sylvia Plath and Charlotte Perkins Gilman, who wrote the haunting short story “The Yellow Wallpaper.”


Growing up with a mother who suffered from mental illness, I supposed affects my early inspirations. Plath deals with depression through The Bell Jar, and poetry. The language of “Bucolics” is brisk and shocking. Likewise, Gilman wrote about a woman slowly losing her mind, until the reader cannot discern the insanity from reality. – Author Louisa Bacio


The Vampire and The Werewolf:  Ravenous Romance, Amazon Kindle and ARe.


BrokenBonds_200


 As a person and an author, I often feel the constrains of society. Not in any big or significant way, but more in the nature of, “Why can’t I say what I want to? Why do I have to be polite to people who don’t deserve my good manners? Why do I have to hold back when they get away with doing what they want?” The long dead authors I’d want to interview are two authors who didn’t let polite society hold them back.Lord Byron and Oscar Wilde were as reknowned for their personal lives as they were for their literary works. Sure, they seem like a popular answer to ZAM’s Sunday Brunch question, but my reasons for wanting to interview them probably don’t fit the conventional mold. For one, I probably wouldn’t ask them much about their writing. I’d want to ask them about what it’s like to flaunt the conventions and set your inner self free. I’ve always been more interested in their personal lives because that’s what fueled their muse. Every writer’s personal life fuels their muse whether they admit to it or not and these two literary figures had very flamboyant, don’t-give-a-damn-about-convention lives.Lord Byron had a notorious affair with the married Lady Caroline Lamb who styled him, “mad, bad and dangerous to know.” He was rumored to have had homosexual affairs as well as an incestuous one with his half-sister. No one could accuse Byron of having lived a conventional life and Oscar Wilde was just as unconventional.  Wilde famously gave an explanation of “the love that dare not speak its name” in court during his trial for sodomy and public indecency. I don’t think he meant those words to become the banner for homosexuality that they’ve become but I wonder if he’d like that they did. It’s definitely a question I’d ask him.Neither of these literary figures seems to have cared much about what others said of them. It only makes me wonder if they had any regrets for the way they lived their lives. It makes me wonder if their lifestyles and their flaunting of conventions helped fuel their muses. The recklessness, the sense of freedom they must have had while flying in the face of convention, inspires me and if I had the ability to interview them that is what I would want them to talk about.

I recently sent a short story to RWA for possible inclusion in their first ever anthology. I don’t know yet whether it will be accepted for the book and I wonder if it is the only MM story they received. It’s entitled Flying in the Face of Convention and I wonder if Wilde and Byron would like it. At the very least, I imagine it would be a spirited conversation if we were to discuss it together!


Purchase Broken Bonds at Amazon   ARE   B&N and NOW(!!!) in audio book at Audible




Sunday Brunch Blog 12/22/13

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Tuesday Teasers - CRIKEY! It's Wednesday!

iStock_000027538366XSmallYes! I’m a day late. I don’t even know why. I blame it on the holi-DAZE and a writing deadline.


So today I want to welcome not one but TWO fabulous Tuesday Teaser authors:


Author Number one is the amazing Marie Sexton. She of the fabulous shoes.


Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway. You can find Marie at her website, HERE, and on Facebook and Twitter.


Don’t Forget!


Readers, your mission is to guess which KC Burn book this comes from, you know the drill. Email me at zamaxfield @ zamaxfield dot com and put Teaser Tuesdays in the subject line. Guess the name of the book and I’ll draw the winner before next Tuesday —— Here’s  Marie’s excerpt:

 

**** sharpened his pencil and he started to draw.

His art took him away, as it so often did. He lost all sense of space and time. He barely noticed the soreness in his backside from sitting on the ground, or the pain in his shoulder from his hunched position. He knew only shapes and lines, reflections and light. It was a calm place inside him that occupied him, yet left some remote corner of his mind free and clear to think of other things. Today, he thought only of the sun and the grass and how surprisingly good it felt to be there. He had worried he wouldn’t fit in here, and maybe he didn’t, but he found it suited him all the same.


He didn’t see or hear  ****** approaching. It wasn’t until he sat down next to **** in the grass that he noticed him at all. **** looked over at him in surprise.


****** didn’t look at him. He didn’t say anything, either. He sat there, his knees up and his forearms draped over them, staring out into the field, and **** waited, wondering what in the world was on the man’s mind.


****** finally looked over at him and he seemed startled to find **** watching him. “Am I bothering you?” he asked.


“Not at all,” **** said. “I missed you at breakfast.”


****** shrugged uncomfortably, obviously disconcerted by such a frank statement. He looked down at Aren’s sketchpad. “What’re you drawing?”


**** hesitated, afraid ****** would make fun of him for his art as he had the first day they’d met, back in Milton, but he saw no mockery in his eyes. Only friendly curiosity.


He held his sketchbook out and ****** took it.


He didn’t say anything for the longest time. He looked at the drawing, then up at the bull in the field, then down again at the drawing. He seemed puzzled. “I don’t get it,” he said at last. “I can see it’s the bull, but it’s not the same at all.”


****’s heart fell at the words. “I guess it’s not very good,” he said, reaching to take the pad back.


****** pulled it out of his reach, still looking at it. “That ain’t what I said. It’s just…” he looked up at the bull again, then down at the sketchpad, his brows furrowed as he tried to find the words. “When I look at your picture, he looks… Well, I guess he looks strong. And proud. He looks special, like he’s something way more than all the other cattle.” He looked back up at the bull standing in the grass, lazily chewing his cud. “But he’s just a bull,” he said, pointing out at him. “Nothing special at all.”


It was such awkward praise, and yet **** found himself smiling. He felt something inside him swell with pride. “That means I did it right,” he said.


~*~


iStock_000006911745XSmallAND BECAUSE I’m a DITZ, and you had to wait: Here’s a second Tuesday Teaser, from the lovely and talented CR Guiliano!


CR writes in many genres, but is most happy writing the love between two men (or more!).


CR has a huge warren of plot bunnies that is growing every day and can’t wait to fill out the story ideas and share them. CR is a committed advocate for the GLBT community and does her best to change society’s attitudes, one mind at a time. You can find CR’s blog here.


Now for CR’s excerpt:


The nurse led **** down a sterile, white hallway lined with glass doors and most covered with thick curtains. The ones that were open had no patients. They stopped outside of 9B and **** felt himself shaking. The nurse turned back to him, laying a hand on the sliding door’s handle.


“As many times as I tell people not to be shocked or dismayed at the condition of their loved one or the number of machines and wires connected to them, it never really helps. It will look much worse than it is. He’s comfortable, shouldn’t be in any pain and is healing. Do you have any questions before you go in?”


**** was nodding at the nurse. “Um, just one. I was told he was being kept in a drug induced coma, but heard his mother say he was waking up?” **** asked. The nurse smiled at him.


“Mr. ******’ last CT scan this morning showed the swelling in his brain had gone down by almost 89% so he has been taken off the drugs to keep him unconscious. He does have pain medication and antibiotics in his IV and he has a g-tube and catheter. At the rate he’s going, he might even be moved to a regular room by tomorrow.” The nurse said and then giggled. “It is common knowledge around here what Mr. ****** said to Dr. *******, so you have become somewhat of a celebrity. We all believe his recovery is directly related to how much he loves you.” She added and **** blushed furiously. The nurse patted his arm kindly. “Everyone only has fifteen minutes to visit him in ICU, however, you have authority to stay as long as you like. Just don’t tire him out too much. He needs rest…and your presence…more than anything to heal.” The nurse finished, gave him a gentle push towards the door as she slid it open and then walked to her station outside ******’s room.


**** stared at the curtain, then gently pushed it aside and entered the room. Immediately, he was assaulted with the antiseptic hospital smell, the constant beeping of machines and the low drone of the TV mounted on the wall in the corner. He took a deep breath and lifted his eyes to gaze at the man he loved. He cringed at the bruises that were the most prominent thing he noticed first. ******’s face was a mass of blue, black and purple. One eye was almost swollen shut. ****’s gaze quickly traveled down ******’s body. Most was covered by a light blanket, but he could see the bulges that indicated casts. He knew there was one on ******’s ankle and his right arm. His left arm was scraped, the skin raw as it lie on top of the covers, the IV needle taped to the indent at his elbow. **** didn’t know what they were doing for his hip, but he certainly could relate to that discomfort. He noticed ******’s feet were moving restlessly and almost grinned. He knew why. From the time he’d met ******, the man could not stand to have his feet covered. Thad moved quietly to the bottom of the bed and carefully lifted the blanket and sheet off ******’s feet. One had a cast on it, but looking at ******’s face, **** saw the immediate relief there, and ****** sighed. Silently, he moved to stand next to the bed, his hand coming up to gently brush ******’s hair off his forehead. He skin was cool to the touch and **** was thankful. Hot skin could mean infection. Even **** knew that much. He should after his hip had gotten infected, which was the main reason he would be forever dependent on prescription pain killers. Just even being here was playing havoc on ****’s bad memories. The smells and sounds bringing back his own stay in the hospital. He continued to gaze down at ******, watching him sleep. So overwhelmingly grateful that ****** was alive, **** leaned down and pressed his lips to ******’s, giving him a tender kiss. He pulled up only far enough to whisper to him. “I love you.” When he stood again, he was startled to see ******’s beautiful hazel eyes open and directly on him, boring into his own green eyes. *****’s lips twitched, but he didn’t smile. He did mouth ‘I love you too’ back at **** and ****’s eyes stung with tears. One escaped and traveled down his cheek. ****** lifted his uninjured arm and brushed the tear with the back of his fingers. **** captured his hand gently and held it against his chest, right above his heart. ****** mouthed again, ‘Don’t cry’ at **** and **** gave him a wavering smile. ****** puckered his lips at him, making a smacking sound and **** laughed. He leaned down to kiss ****** again, feeling ****** kiss him back. God! It felt so good to have ****** respond. To feel his lips move under his after thinking he’d never feel that again. **** heard the heart monitor attached to ****** speed up and he reluctantly broke the kiss.



Tuesday Teasers - CRIKEY! It's Wednesday!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Sunday Brunch - 12/15/13

saupload_mad_20hatter_20tea_20party


This week, we’re talking about weird family traditions, and I can’t help making a joke about heading down the Lane, or the Lain, as it were because today my guests are none other than Amy Lane and Tara Lain, and they’re here to talk about the weird and wonderful things we call family traditions.


Last week’s winner? Fay!!!


This week my guests will share their answers with us, and you, gentle readers, can give your answer to my question in the comment section below. I’ll choose one random person from the comments and reward them with an ebook surprise, it’s that simple!


Tell me what your answer to today’s question would be in the comments, and you could win an e-book!


This weeks question is:


What is your weirdest family tradition?



Mistletowed_432


What is your Weirdest Family Tradition?


I was an Army brat growing up all over the world. We seldom stayed in one place long. The things that most people consider traditional — events with extended family, neighborhood get-togethers — weren’t true for us or people like us because we moved all the time.


I think that’s why my nuclear family had a lot of traditions — things that gave some order and meaning to a very disordered life.


My father spent hours creating Easter egg masterpieces, my mother decorated windows for Christmas that would have put Michelangelo to shame.


Food played a key role in many holidays. For Christmas eve, my mother made an elaborate display of what she called antipasto — a buffet of mostly cold dishes that people could snack on all evening and into the next day. And Thanksgiving? Do you know anyone else whose turkey dinner included sauerkraut and cold canned asparagus! Yep.For some reason, my father discovered that the sour taste of sauerkraut was a perfect complement to the often sweet tastes that star in a turkey dinner like yams, cranberry sauce, even the turkey is a sweetish meat.


To this day, I miss the sauerkraut on my turkey dinner. But I must confess that fresh, steamed asparagus now has more appeal than the cold squishy stuff in a can. Still, I honor it for the weird family tradition it was. — Author Tara Lain


Purchase Mistletowed at  Amazon   




GoingUp_postcard_front_DSPMy weirdest family tradition?


 

My daughter says it’s German cabbage.  

 

You know, purple cabbage, bacon, brown sugar and vinegar?  

 

I think she’s crazy– how can you not love German cabbage?  I’ll move on to another tradition. editor’s note: I know, right?

 

How about hanging the star from the ceiling instead of putting it on the tree?  Except we couldn’t find any good stars to hang from the ceiling after our last one sort of disintegrated so we have a light up star instead– but we do have a perpetual valentines day heart hanging from our ceiling, and the heart and the star sort of hang up there in the heavens and visit, so, no, that doesn’t count.

 

Maybe it’s mom’s crafting spree?  Could that be it?  Every Christmas I’m making something to deadline?  And I’m staying up until goddess knows when trying to get it finished?  Oh wait– does everyone do that?  Rats.

 

OH, I know!  

 

Our best and weirdest family tradition– besides rats as pets for our children– is the way we try to out-do each other scaring off the missionaries that come to our door.

 

I’ve been known to tell them that we’re so pagan any bible that passed our threshold would burst into flames.

 

Mate once told a group that we were heathens.  When I explained to him that being a heathen wasn’t a religion, it was just the word we used for our kids running around in their underwear, he shrugged and said, “Well, anyway, the church people left.”  

 

Today was one of the best though. Today was a lovely sleep-in day, and they knocked at 10:30 a.m..  Mate answered the door in his pajamas with his hair rumpled and his eyes still all sleepy and said, “I’m sorry.  We’re busy.”  

 

And then shut the door.  

 

Chicken, my college-age student, has taken this tradition and run with it.  

 

“Here, would you like to read a scripture?”

 

“No thanks.  I’m good.”

 

“Would you like an anti-masturbatory pamphlet?”  (Swear to Goddess, this happened.)

 

“No, not really.”

 

“Are you sure you wouldn’t like to read the bible with us?”

 

“No, that’s okay.  I went to a fundamentalist Christian Academy.  I’ve read it plenty.  Have a nice day!”

 

I told her we’d work on her technique the next time someone came at her with an anti-masturbatory pamphlet, but so far, she’s carrying the family torch in grand style.  Author — Amy Lane



Going Up by Amy Lane is available for Pre-Order from Dreamspinner Press

 


 



 




Sunday Brunch - 12/15/13

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Sunday Brunch Blog - 12/08/13

saupload_mad_20hatter_20tea_20party


Last week we talk about movies! I’m amazed at some of the guilty pleasure movie lovers out there! I watched two of my guilty pleasure movies with the family this week, Red, and Red 2!


Last week’s winner? Jean!


This week my guests will share their answers with us, and you, gentle readers, can give your answer to my question in the comment section below. I’ll choose one random person from the comments and reward them with an ebook surprise, it’s that simple!


Tell me what your answer to today’s question would be in the comments, and you could win an e-book!


This weeks question is:


“Do you have any unusual plans, rituals, or traditions during the holiday season?” (Whatever you celebrate.)


LetItSnow72lg 2I always make Christmas cookies. It’s a tradition I started the year my daughter was born, which means my first round was me baking with a one-month old strapped to my chest. I made about six different kinds that first year, then gave them away to friends and family. As the years have gone on, I’ve done more, and more, and more, sometimes as many as a dozen different cookies. My daughter takes them to school, to lesson instructors, and everyone who comes to my house or invites me to theirs looks at my arms as soon as I enter. “Are there any cookies?”


Last year was a new twist as I made my cookies dairy and egg free, so I could eat them too: this year I get to add gluten free to that list as well. I admit, I’m a little nervous. Gluten free baking is hard, and I have to do it en masse. I can’t even make some “regular” cookies to give away, because the flour in the air would make me sick. So it’s completely GF or bust. The plus side, though, is that when I figure it out, I’ll be able to share with even more friends, and they’ll be friends who don’t often get homemade Christmas cookies. — Author Heidi Cullinan





 

Purchase Let It Snow:   Amazon   ARE   B&N






NSSS-2 (427x640) (200x300)The holidays for me can be pretty interesting to orchestrate. After one of my family celebrations, I’m pretty sure I could run a Fortune 500 company and not break a sweat. Right before the holiday, it’s a mad scramble to get some work done so I can take the day before and the day of the holiday off.


Christmas is my all time favorite holiday. My children are under threat of bodily harm if they don’t come home for Christmas. When they have children of their own, they can spend Christmas morning at home with their kids, but then everyone comes to Mom’s house.


Our day starts with stockings. The rule is Mom and Dad get to have one cup of coffee before anything happens. Over the years my kids have gotten smart and show up with Starbucks in hand. Everyone crawls onto the bed with Mom and Dad and opens stockings. As our family grew, this became very interesting. We now have about fifteen people huddled around our bed going through their stockings.


Then it’s off to the presents.


Every year, someone is designated the honorary Santa. Their job is to hand out one present at a time to people in order. Dad made it a habit to make sure everyone got an equal amount of presents. With six kids, you kind of have to or chaos ensues.


As soon as presents are opened, a few of us head to the kitchen to put the turkey in the oven while others do a quick clean up. The usual count for dinner is upwards of twenty five people so cooking is a two day affair at our house (deserts and muchies cooked the day before), with enough food for my army laid out buffet style for the snacks then the good dishes for the dinner. (I got lazy over Thanksgiving and we ate on paper plates).


The rest of the day is spent playing with toys, watching football, and hanging out with the family. I will admit that once everyone is engaged in video games or whatever, I do tend to sneak off and do a little writing. Every little word helps.


So, that’s my holiday…may not sound all that exciting but my entire family looks forward to Christmas the entire year. As my children grow and start their own adult lives, finding a time for all of us to be in one place at the same time is kind of like trying to get the planets to align. This is the one day out of the year I know my entire family will be under my roof…and that may be the best Christmas present of them all. — Author Stormy Glenn


Purchase Not So Simple Simon at Bookstrand


For His LoveWhen I still lived in New Jersey, we used to have a few Christmas traditions. The weekend before Christmas, we would have a huge Christmas party at my house. Friends and family would come and stay late into the night laughing, drinking, and eating. We’d have enough food and cookies to feed a couple armies.


Christmas Eve would always be spent at my grandparent’s house in Cape May. On the way home, we’d listen to the Santa Tracker. Christmas morning, the entire family would come to our house for breakfast and all of us kids would open our presents. That evening, we’d all meet at my aunt’s house for Christmas dinner and for the adults to exchange presents.


Those are really the only Christmas traditions we had. When I moved down to SC, those traditions were left behind. The family still in NJ gets together Christmas evening at my aunt’s house still, but that’s it. The only part we still do down here is the Christmas baking where my mother goes on a cookie making binge. Despite the fact that we no longer have our huge Christmas party, she still bakes like we do. — Author William Cooper


Purchase For His Love:   Amazon   ARE   B&N


 


 


 


 


 



Sunday Brunch Blog - 12/08/13

Thursday, December 5, 2013

And the Winners ARE:

ZM_GrimeDoesn'tPay-Eddie_coverinCongratulations to:


Emily, who won the Loose Id Gift Certificate.


AND


Debra, Kat, and Melora, who won iTunes Gift cards.


Eddie and Andrew have dynamite chemistry. But Eddie’s profoundly dyslexic, and Andrew lives to read. Andrew’s pathologically disorganized, and Eddie likes things neat and clutter free.


Andrew’s ashamed of his hoarder father, and Eddie’s embarrassed by his lack of education – secrets that could pull them apart even as a friend’s tragedy brings them together.


When Andrew’s father devolves and nearly dies because of his compulsion, Eddie and Andrew must learn compassion begins with loving one’s self.


Read an excerpt HERE


Purchase Eddie: Grime Deosn’t Pay:  AMAZON  ARE   Loose Id


Giveaway image - playlist



And the Winners ARE:

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Tuesday Teaser - Special Guest - KC Burn!

Let’s have a GREAT BIG Tuesday Teaser welcome to KC Burn, another one of my friends from the Orange County Chapter of the RWA!


Here’s what KC says about herself:


I’ve been writing for what feels like my whole life. I’m a sucker for a happy ending (get your mind out of the gutters!) so it’s been romance almost all the way. After moving from Toronto to Florida for my hubby to take a dream job, I discovered a love of gay romance and fulfilled my own dream — getting published. After a few years of editing web content by day and at night, neglecting my supportive hubby and needy cat to write about men loving men, I was uprooted yet again, and now reside in California.


Writing is always fun, despite the hard work, but writing about my guys is more fun than I’ve had in a long time. Love between consenting adults is a beautiful thing, and should be celebrated, regardless of sexual orientation. I hope you enjoy reading my stories as much as I love writing them.


KC, we love it when you do! I looked for a picture of us (I swear I’ve got one somewhere) but I couldn’t find it. Suffice it to say, we would have looked absolutely fabulous!


Don’t Forget!


Readers, your mission is to guess which KC Burn book this comes from, you know the drill. Email me at zamaxfield @ zamaxfield dot com and put Teaser Tuesdays in the subject line. Guess the name of the book and I’ll draw the winner before next Tuesday —— Here’s  KC’s excerpt:

 


*** stood in the doorway, mesmerized. *** had outdone herself. The escort would only reach as high as his shoulder. A hank of deep cobalt blue bisected the glossy black hair, perfectly accentuating the blue eyes gazing at him. This one was only a few years younger than him—mid to late twenties—and a trifle old for a profession that prized youth. But the air of innocence surrounding him—or inexperience—was delectable. How did an escort keep his appearance of inexperience intact? Incredible acting ability?


A few light freckles scattered across the once-broken button nose. With it set properly, he’d be a complete cherub, although the slight crookedness did not detract from his allure. Neither did the dyed-blue hair. Quite the opposite, in fact. It made him even tastier. The wiry, athletic build amplified ***’s desires, and his cock swelled and throbbed in appreciation.


When his escort licked those plump pink lips after directing a gaze at ***’s crotch, he congratulated himself for having most of the day and all night to fuck his misery away. Sex tamed the stress, and he was going to be a fucked-out, come-drained limp noodle when he attended those damned negotiations.


*** deserved a gift for her choice, especially if he could place a standing order. If this cute thing was any good in the sack…forget standing order, he’d ask for an exclusive.


Moving farther into the room, he placed his work console on the desk, gaze never leaving the gorgeous man who was his for the night.


“Strip.” Arousal roughened his voice like he’d swallowed ground glass and he wanted to growl when those blue eyes lifted to his face and widened in shock, pupils dilating.


A couple more steps put him close enough to smell the spicy, earthy scent of his escort’s clean skin. The same skin that pinkened under his gaze.


Fuck, they were going to play.


“Strip… What’s your name?” *** could call him boy the whole time, but he wasn’t a true Dom. He never did scenes; he never needed safe words. But when the stress escalated, he needed a situation where he had control, where no worry surrounded the outcome. He needed the submission, or more specifically, acquiescence, whether it happened immediately or after a bit of a mock struggle.


“***,” was the barely audible reply.


“Strip, ***.” *** was certain *** heard the implied or I’ll do it for you, but he didn’t move a muscle. Not voluntarily, anyway. *** didn’t miss the twitch under his soft workout pants. The man looked like he’d rolled out of bed a moment ago, and *** had every intention of rolling him back in.


After he fucked him against the wall. Or over his work console. Mmmm. Yeah. He was going to make *** come all over that misbegotten chunk of electronics.


A moan welled up, but he forced it back. *** needed to start moaning before he did.

*** slid a glance down that tight body, with the strong, lithe build of a cat burglar. He was welcome to rob *** blind, as long as he gave it up, gave everything up, first.


 




Tuesday Teaser - Special Guest - KC Burn!

Monday, December 2, 2013

News

LostAndFound_150x300Check out the Lost and Found Blog Tour. It’s actually TWO blog tours in ONE! Riptide has a huge promotion right now, and some mighty fine prizes. You can find a link to that, HERE.






December 2, 2013 - Cup O’ Porn

December 3, 2013 - Pants Off Reviews – Spotlight Stop

December 3, 2013 - Joyfully Jay


December 4, 2013 - The Jeep Diva

December 5, 2013 - Under the Covers Book Blog


December 6, 2013 - Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

December 6, 2013 - Tracy’s Place – Spotlight Stop






Lost & Found Blog Tour Banner

You can also find a second blog tour, through Enchantress of blog tours, HERE. 


 


Stops for this second blog tour include I’ll update the links as they become available:


Monday, Dec. 2 - The Blog of Sid Love ,  T.T. Kove


Tuesday, Dec. 3 - My Reviews & Ramblings,  Slitsread


Wednesday, Dec. 4 - The Risque Redhead Reads


Thursday, Dec. 5 - Booker Like a Hooker, Live Your Life, Buy The Book


Friday, Dec. 6 - Ame – That’s A Me, Tara Lain


Saturday, Dec. 7 - BookwormBridgette’s World, Adventures of Piglet Scooter


Sunday, Dec. 8 - ZcrazyAngel Escape

 


ImageExcerpt: Lost and Found


Winter was his favorite season at the resort. Holiday lights brightened the darkness, shimmering in the algae-laden water like sunken treasure. Several of the fancier rigs were overdressed for the occasion, as tacky as they were festive, with mirror balls and singing Christmas trees.


Summers were crowded with people who drank too much. There were way too many small kids to watch out for. Summer gave Ringo ulcers. But in December the weather was mild and color scintillated everywhere, from the bright orange of fires on the beach, to the rigs, to the sparkling trunks of majestic palms wrapped halfway up with twinkle lights.


The glittered reflection of all that luminescence shivered on the water—balm to Ringo’s soul.


Ringo pulled his golf cart up next to Gavin’s place. He was sitting on a canvas lawn chair with one leg propped up, playing Christmas music on a ukulele. He had a good fire going in a black iron fire bowl with Kokopelli cutouts. Bird lay by his side, his muzzle draped contentedly over Gavin’s bare foot.


Ringo thought he’d probably lie down like that with his face on Gavin’s foot if Gavin would let him.


Gavin caught sight of him and lifted his chin. That was all the welcome Ringo was going to get, so he made the most of it. He got out of his cart and stepped onto Gavin’s woven hemp patio rug. He gave Gavin a light kiss on the top of his head in lieu of a greeting.


Gavin broke off playing to pick up his beer and take a swallow, then put it down to play some more. Ringo recognized “Winter Wonderland.”


“I brought you In-N-Out.” Ringo headed toward the door of Gavin’s RV. “Mind if I go in and get some plates and things?”


“Make yourself homely.” Gavin shifted slowly in his chair and grimaced with pain. “Help yourself to a brew while you’re in there.”


Gavin had a bag of peas cooling his knee. “You hurting?”


“Yeah.” Gavin shrugged. “I got pills, though.”


“Peas still cold?”


“I have another bag, maybe you could switch them since you’re going in . . .?”


“Sure.” Ringo plucked the bag off him. The knee itself didn’t look too bad from the outside. A little swelling, a little bruising. He probably had a couple of small incisions under the Band-Aids. Ringo went inside Gavin’s RV and got a fresh bag of peas from the freezer. He didn’t think he’d ever seen Gavin eat a pea. He must have kept them just for their medicinal benefit. While he was in there, he put their burgers and fries on paper plates and got himself a beer.


When he returned, he sat down in a camp chair opposite Gavin’s. Sure as shit, the smoke turned direction and headed his way. He waved and blinked his eyes. “Why does that always happen? No matter where I’m sitting, I get smoke in my face.”


“Smoke seeks out the pretty boys.” Gavin followed that up with a musical rimshot—bah dum bump—on his ukulele.


Ringo rolled his eyes. “So, you had arthroscopic surgery?”


“Yeah. I tore the meniscus. I got a video of the surgery if you want to watch it sometime. It looks like a tiny dragon is tearing off bits of cotton candy in the dark.”


“I’ll pass.” Ringo wasn’t much into that sort of thing. He’d seen all the blood and gore he’d needed to see in the Army. “Should you be drinking that if you’re taking pills?”


Gavin slanted an irritated look at him. “I only had one beer, mami. I’m fine.”


Ringo twisted the cap off his beer. “I like you better when you call me papi.”


Gavin narrowed his eyes at that. “So act like a man instead of smothering me.”


Ringo itched to twist Gavin’s neck. Why did Gavin always have to give him attitude when he was only checking in to make sure everything was okay? Gavin’d had surgery, for Christ’s sake. Why couldn’t Gavin tell him when things weren’t okay?


“You got plenty to eat for snacks and something to drink besides beer?”


“For today.” Gavin looked away. “But I could use some stuff.”


That’s new. Was Gavin asking for help with something? Had the world come to an end and nobody told Ringo? “Like what? I can make a list.”


“I need some first aid shit. Mine’s so old it’s moldy. I think it came with the rig.”


“Like bandages and antibacterial ointment?”


“Yeah.”


“What else? Bottled water? Coffee? Pop? Those cookies you like with the peanut butter?”


Gavin shot him a genuine smile. “You remember that?”


“Yeah.” Ringo felt his cheeks heat up. “I remember. Soft oatmeal with raisins too. You don’t like chocolate chip like normal people.”


“I like chocolate chip.”


“But they don’t make your eyes light up,” Ringo murmured.


Gavin sighed, and his fingers drifted into another song, this one in a minor key so it sounded a little sad.


Ringo shook his head and sat back. Gavin was right there in front of him. Was he feeling lonely? On more than one occasion, he’d used the intel Gavin’s restless musicality sent out and they’d ended up making out or in the sack, despite the fact that they weren’t together anymore.


Ringo generally acted on Gavin’s haunted, lonely music, not on his words, until one or the other of them burst the magic spell he’d woven.


Usually it was Ringo who messed up, and Gavin who chased him away.


Just now, Gavin was more than a little high. If Ringo pushed things, if he approached Gavin like Bird did—like he had a right to Gavin’s affection, or like he was just too dumb to know he wasn’t always so welcome—he’d be allowed to stay the night.


It might be worth it, just to see if he could make Gavin smile for a while.


“You should eat,” he said instead.


If Gavin was frozen inside his melancholy, then Ringo was caught in the web of his macho. He didn’t want to crawl on his knees and beg to be petted like a dog. He wanted Gavin to want him. To ask for what he wanted out loud with his words instead of his goddamn music.


Read more or purchase from Riptide Publishing, HERE.