Welcome to my little corner of the gay erotic romance universe . . . well, half of it, anyway. (You can find the other half at RachelHaimowitz.com.) This is the place to come for sneak previews of new projects, release information, and the occasional M/M book review. I'll also share thoughts on the industry on occasion, and I hope you'll come share yours in return.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Noble Launch Party - Win Kari Gregg and Aleks Voinov (and free books and swag!)

**Due to technical problems, Noble was forced to postpone the Launch Party until next Saturday, the 7th of May. Aleks, Kari, and I will be chatting from 3 to 4 PM eastern time on May 7. Apologies to all who'd blocked out time to bid for Aleks and Kari, but have no fear--I'll be selling them next week instead. Thank you! (If you've not yet read this post, read down to make sense of this :-p)**

Noble Romance is launching a new website this Sunday, and in celebration, they're holding a big release chat party with tons of prizes. Myself, Kari Gregg, and Aleksandr Voinov will be hosting the chat from 3 to 5 PM eastern time, right here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NobleRomancePublishing/. Signing up is easy, and I hope you'll join us.

You see, life's pretty entertaining when the three of us get together, and this Sunday will be extra special. Since we've all written books with slaves--Kari's Spoils of War, my Anchored: Belonging, and Aleks's . . . well, pretty much everything he's ever written--we decided to run with that and hold a little slave auction of our own. Since I'm the "master" of the Belonging universe, I get to be the auctioneer.

Aleks being amazing and talented and all that jazz is the prize of the weekend, and he won't go cheap, so come prepared to list (and show photos of) what you're willing to sell, beg, borrow, or steal to get your hands on him. He's guaranteed to produce at least 150,000 words a year, and I hear he makes a damn fine bed-warmer--top or bottom or both ;-) Current bid for Aleks as of the time of this posting is a house, 3 acres in the Smoky Mountains, 1 dog, 9 chickens, and 2 pre-owned children.

Kari being the GIANT PAIN THE ASS that she is will be going for bargain-basement pricing. Someone, please, take her off my hands. Current bid is a beat-up truck, valued at $8,000. This is at least $7,900 more than I thought she'd go for, but, meh, I guess it's still a bargain?

If you'd like to place a bid before the weekend, hop onto Twitter and check out the #slave4sale hashtag. Bids should be sent to me @rachelhaimowitz, hashtag included; or you can leave a bid right here in the comments (bids with links to photos included will carry more weight). But Kari and Aleks can't be won in absentia, so be sure to join us this Sunday, May 1, from 3 to 5 PM eastern at the Noble Yahoo Loop. There will be awesome swag bags for the first 25 participants, discount codes for everyone, and lots of cool Noble swag (t-shirts, mouse pad, tote bag, etc) being raffled at random. And free books too! Aleks's winner will get a print copy of one of his Noble books, and his runner up will get an ebook copy. Kari's winner will get a print copy of Spoils of War, and her runner up will get an ebook copy. And I'll be giving a print and an ebook copy of Anchored: Belonging to the two bidders who make me laugh the hardest.

Once the auctions end, some of our characters will be making an appearance to chat with you an answer your questions. Expect to see Mitch from Lovely Wicked, Daniel and Carl from Anchored, William of Kent from Deliverance, and maybe even Eli from Spoils of War. 

Be sure to join in all the fun, and who knows--you might just walk out with your own shiny new writer!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Meaning of Home (and a Free Book!) with Mysti Parker

Happy Wednesday, all! I've got a fun treat for you today--Mysti Parker is in the house, talking about, well, what it means to be in the house ;-) Or home, rather, and how the meaning and perception of home shaped the characters in her new release, A Ranger's Tale.

I'm a fan of this cover, so let's begin with that and a blurb.

In the fantasy world of Tallenmere, the high elf Caliphany Aranea, nearly a century old, has never been allowed to travel farther than a few miles out of the capital city of Leogard. Her father, Sirius, leads the Mage Academy, and after losing his only son, he expects Caliphany to take his place one day. The trouble is, she doesn't want to study magic and doubts she'll ever be as good a wizard as her father. She dreams of leaving Leogard to explore the world and strike out on her own--lofty goals for Sirius' daughter, who also happens to be King Leopold's niece.

When two brutes at Leogard Harbor attempt to kidnap her while she dreams of faraway lands, half-elf ship captain and ranger, Galadin Trudeaux, comes to her rescue. From their first chance encounter, to the finale, where Caliphany must decide where her heart truly lies, she and Galadin will face more adventure, more love, more heartache, than they ever thought possible. Through it all, they discover the
power of forgiveness and of a love that stands the test of time.

And now I'll turn the floor over to Mysti, beneath the jump. She's got a great guest post for you, and an excerpt from her new book, too. If the excerpt appeals--and I suspect it will--be sure to leave a comment; Mysti's giving away one free PDF copy of A Ranger's Tale to a lucky commenter!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Master Class: BDSM Sneak Peek

Happy Monday, all! I'm totally bouncy today because I've just finished edits on Master Class, a contemporary M/M BDSM novella(ette) I wrote a while back and subbed to Carina Press. Master Class is the story of how Devon ("Sir") and Nicky--the stars of Sublime: Collected Shorts--first meet and start to fall for each other. And it is smokin' hot.

The headless torsos of Sir (back) and Nicky (front).

Alas, Carina was looking for romance with erotic elements, and Master Class is very much erotica with romantic elements, so in the end, despite their brilliant editorial feedback, they just weren't the right fit for this story. When I realized that, I put Master Class away for a while to focus on Crescendo, figuring I'd decide what to do with it later, but the BDSM bug bit me earlier this week and demanded I decide what to do with it right now. And when the muse calls, you damn well better listen.

So . . . I just wrapped up edits tonight, and I think I've decided where I'll be submitting it. The story is definitely better than it was last week, and it's also about a thousand words longer, though still just a quick tasty bite at 16,400 words (about 50 pages). Hopefully I'll have good news for you all soon. In the meanwhile, here's a sneak peek of Master Class, beneath the jump. It is definitely on the NSFW side. And don't be too alarmed by Devon's, er, vigor--Nicky is the sluttiest of pain sluts I've ever met :-)

Easter Bonus Post

Happy Easter to all my goyim friends and readers! :D Here, have the cutest bunny I've ever seen, beneath the jump.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Race for Planet Earth with Ami Blackwelder

Let's all give a warm welcome Ami Blackwelder today. She's here as part of her Shifters of 2040 Release Tour to discuss her six-novel sci-fi/paranormal romance series, the Shifter Evolutions Saga. Each book in Ami's saga is only 99 cents on Kindle, so if you're looking for a fun bargain PNM read, they might be just perfect for you.

Now I'll turn the floor over to Ami, beneath the jump.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Appalachian Bound!

I'm heading out in a couple hours to a little town called Burnsville in the northwest corner of North Carolina. I bought land there last year in the heart of the Appalachian mountains, just four miles from the eponymous trail I love so much. Eventually, when I can afford it, I'll build a little log home on that land and move down there full time to write away from the muse-sucking sprawl that is suburbia.

My land, let me show you it :-) (Click to embiggen.)

The high-tech front gate to the private "road" that cuts through my property.

By far the coolest feature on the whole 30 acres, w/the woman I bought the land from posing for scale.

One of the views from the taller ridgeline on the property.

The entrance to my property, from the property looking out.

In the meanwhile, I must content myself with occasional visits. I'll be gone until next Saturday. There is internet, and I will make my regular blog posts, but I won't be hanging round Twitter or the like very much until I get back to Jersey.

To make it up to you, have some eye candy, beneath the cut. Let's go with country boys today in honor of my trip :-)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

OMGYAY! (Or, Marie Sexton Is IN DA HOUSE, Giving Books Away!)

I've got a special treat for you folks today: a one Ms. Marie Sexton (of #MILFMarie fame on Twitter ;-D) is here to discuss, well, angst. And how important it can be to both books and life. In Marie's case, it's about her new book in the popular Coda series, Paris A to Z. And also her love of explodey things.

Speaking of love, Marie's giving away a title of choice from her backlist to one lucky commenter. So spread the love, and who knows, maybe you'll get lucky! (Or, you know, crabs.)

Before we delve into Marie's take on angst, let's begin as always with a blurb.

Zach Mitchell and his lover Angelo Green are headed to Paris (along with their Coda friends Matt and Jared) to attend Jon and Cole’s wedding. Matt will have to face Jared’s former lover, and Angelo will have to spend an entire week with Zach’s ex-boyfriend. Between Matt’s jealousy and Angelo’s temper, Zach thinks they’ll be lucky to get through the week without one of the grooms being punched. But Zach soon realizes he should worry less about Angelo and more about himself. Facing the bittersweet memories of his past and his own guilt over breaking Jon’s heart is harder than expected, but Zach will have to find a way to leave his past behind if he’s to have any hope of the future he wants with Angelo.

And now I'll turn the floor over to Marie, beneath the jump.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Sink into the Belonging 'verse (and Pick up Some Swag while You're There!)

I'm gonna keep this short and sweet today. Those of you who've read Anchored are familiar with the alternate universe in which it takes place: the Belonging universe, where slavery is still legal all over the world. There are many more books to come in this world, both with the characters you know and love and with all new characters in all new situations. One of them is Counterpunch, a novel currently being written by Aleksandr Voinov about a slave heavyweight champion boxer named Brooklyn Marshall. I'll be writing my own slave boxer story soon, and we hope to release them together.

The Belonging 'verse is complex and layered, and in our writings so far, we've barely scratched the surface of what it's like to live in such a world. So we thought it'd be fun to put together a portal for you all--think websites of the sort a tourist town might build to entice and educate potential visitors--called BelongingVerse.com. It's an entirely immersive experience, and it takes itself very seriously. Buying and selling people is serious business, after all. And whether you're a freeman, a slave, or a potential conscript, Belongingverse.com is for you.

As you'll see, the site is not yet complete, but check back often as we add new material. In the end it will be dozens, possibly even hundreds of pages long. We plan to fill in the existing pages over the next couple weeks and update with new pages as each new book and character and circumstance in the Belonging 'verse is introduced.

And don't forget to check out the store, where our shiny new swag is available to all who want (or are required by law to wear) it:

Hope to see you all there. The forms on the website work. So do the email addresses. Feel free to use them as they're intended, and we'll add your contributions to the site. There are a great many ways to be creative and join in on the fun, and who knows . . . good slaves might just be rewarded with swag for free :-)

Speaking of free swag, I've got some to give away, including three free sets of SLAVE bracelets. To enter, just hit up the new site, then come back here and leave a comment about what you liked or disliked the most and/or what you'd like to see there in the future. Each comment gets you an entry.

Friday, April 8, 2011

NSFW Sneak Peek: Crescendo, Book II of Song of the Fallen

I've been promising a new sneak peek from Crescendo for a while, and since I've been teasing so long, I thought I'd make amends with an extremely NSFW little excerpt. Enjoy!

He was at full arms again, standing so tall he hurt. Ayden, gods have mercy, reached round behind him and found Freyrík with his hand, wrapped calloused fingers round the root of Freyrík’s cock and pulled. His eyes never left Freyrík’s, but a smile grew within them to match the one curling his lips, playful and deadly serious all apiece. He tugged hard on the silk round Freyrík’s wrists, stretching him near to discomfort, but even that strain seemed transformed somehow by the work of Ayden’s other hand, by the elf’s devilish grin, and he wanted more of it, struggled back and made Ayden work for it, force him, match him strain for strain.
Freyrík lost, of course. He could hold onto nothing in Ayden’s hands. Didn’t want to, anyway.
And gods, but those hands were talented. Ayden worked him with all his considerable skill and finesse, fingers gripping, squeezing, sliding, twisting, forcing Freyrík to the barest edge and holding him there—a deathblow pulled at the last instant, confident and steady.
And absolutely maddening.
Ayden wound the loose end of the silk round his hand, once, twice, stretching Freyrík so tight his belly pulled. And his cock twinged. Strained, eager. ‘Twas almost as if the silk were wrapped round his manhood and not his wrists.
Ayden’s smile faded from his lips but never left his eyes, which remained affixed to Freyrík’s own as if by tidal force. “Will you beg me,” he asked—said, really, as if he already knew the answer.
Freyrík licked dry lips and nodded. “If you wish it.”
Ayden leaned in, and his lips met Freyrík’s own with softness utterly striking in its contrast to all that had come before it. A sweet sweep of tongue against tongue, a gentle press of lips, less exploratory than savory, no more claiming than a parting caress.
“I do not,” he whispered against Freyrík’s lips, and then his hand was out behind him again, seeking and finding Freyrík’s manhood (straining quite helpfully toward Ayden’s grasping fingers), and with firm, deliberate strokes and murmured endearments against his skin, Ayden brought him to shuddering completion.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

New Orleans Bound! :D

I'm very excited to tell you all that I'll be attending the GayRomLit Retreat in New Orleans on October 13 to 16! For a while there it was looking like I wouldn't be able to make it, but now I've made my reservation and booked my flight and will be cramming into a room with authors Cat Grant and EM Lynley, who graciously offered to share their space with me in the sold-out hotel.

I want to give a special shout-out to the event organizers here, because even though I missed author registration by a mile, they were wonderfully responsive to my desire to be involved as an author in the retreat and added my name to the Dine with an Author event. Five retreat-goers will be selected at random to share a meal with each participating author. For me that'll be lunch, since nobody wants to be anywhere near me before I've had my coffee in the morning :-) I'm planning to make up some exclusive swag for my dining pals, so, a question for all you lovely folks: if you were eating lunch with me and taking home some special swag at the end, what would make you happiest? Feel free to think out of the box here, though if you really would love something simple like a t-shirt or a mug or the like, I want to hear that too.

I'll also be doing something else at the event during downtime and after hours (NOT during any scheduled activities) that, at the moment, must remain Sooper Seekrit. But it'll be simple, fun, and as engaging as you'd care to make it. The Sooper Seekrit Activity will be co-sponsored by Aleksandr Voinov, who sadly will not be able to make it from London to NOLA to participate but who will most assuredly be there in spirit. I promise we won't keep you waiting too long . . . keep an eyeball or two peeled for more Sooper Seekrit Activity info in about two weeks.

In the meanwhile, if you're going to GayRomLit, drop a note in the comments. It's a pretty small event, so odds are good we'll all run into each other at some point throughout the weekend, but I'd love to know who's attending and who I might finally get a chance to meet :-)

See you then!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Movie Reviews for Pervs: Senseless

My first Movie Review for Pervs was one of the most-clicked posts ever on Fantasy Unbound, so I thought today I'd bring you lovely folks another one.

Today features Senseless, a horror/thriller based on the Stona Fitch novel of the same name and starring an all-grown-up Jason Behr. If you feel weird watching little Max from Roswell get viciously and repeatedly tortured, well . . . then you obviously didn't share the same childhood fantasies I did ;-p

Senseless is by no means a brainless slasher film, or even a Saw-esque capture/survival movie. Instead it presents itself as a thinly-constructed political screed about the dangers and offenses of American-style capitalism, with international businessman Eliott Gast standing in as the whipping boy for all the wrongs our capitalist country has done. Note I said that's how it presents itself. It's not what I think it is, or even necessarily what I think it intends to be. But . . . more about that later.

Anyway, because Gast (and Americans in general) is a seen by his captors as a man of the senses, a hedonist--impressions strengthened by occasional flashbacks into Eliott's indulgent past at bazillion-dollar-a-plate restaurants, playing piano, etc.--his captors decide to strip him of his senses one by one (in deliciously painful fashion), all the while broadcasting his long captivity and torture over the internet. Yes, Eliott's a Youtube sensation! And his captors leave it up to the masses to choose whether or not to set him free. Guess what the masses say >:D

Now then, on to the Perv Scale, beneath the jump. (Note for the easily squicked and those with slow connections: I have a weirdly huge number of screencaps for this one, but they're tamer than the Eden Lake caps for sure.)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Rainbow Recap!

Welcome, folks, to the promised recap of the 2011 Rainbow Book Fair.

I went with All Male Romance, a group of 25 M/M romance writers whose goal is to support and encourage writers and readers of our little niche, and hopefully help to make it a not-so-little niche in the years to come. (Special thanks to the AMR team, btw, from whom I've gacked all these photos.)

The AMR table. Isn't is shiny?

Sadly, the fair was spread over two rooms--a very large main room and a much smaller side room which nobody seemed to know about. Guess where we were? :-( Throughout the day, our room was always 9/10ths empty, while the main room was so crowded you couldn't make it through the aisles. *glares at Dreamspinner Press with their seventy bazillion awesome authors attending* ;-p

Dreamspinner Press: Blocking Traffic Since 2007

Despite being shunted to the side room, we had lots of company from readers, curious passers-by (the Fair was in the Village and probably got some reasonable street traffic), and other writers. And the organizers--lovely, helpful people all, who deserve many a cookie--announced that next year, the Fair will be spread throughout the whole building. It could really use the space. I'm excited for next year.

For me, the highlight of the show was finally meeting other M/M authors face to face. This is the first event I've ever attended as a published author, or even as a reader of M/M romance, and it was delightful to finally put some faces to all the people I've been chatting with on Goodreads and Twitter and author loops and the like. Especially delightful was meeting Damon Suede, who, yes, is as cute in person as he is in his Goodreads photo, and who is also the first person ever to go, "OMG are you Rachel Haimowitz?" We can all use a little ego boost every now and then, eh? ;-) Plus I passed the ego boost on; I totally did the same thing when I met Clare London, who was as delightful in person as you could ever have imagined her being. Also I totally love her accent :-)

From L to R: Clare London, Lovely Girl Whose Name I Apologize Profusely for Forgetting, Damon Suede, and me. The reason I'm laughing is because I'm totally grabbing his ass, and he's totally fine with it.

I also had the pleasure of meeting Andrew Grey (my second ass-grab of the day, and he got me right back), who was such a sweetheart and a gentleman that he kissed my hand when I went to say goodbye to him; Felicia Watson, whose book I picked up because I'd heard so many wonderful things about it and then realized, after I'd said that, that the woman I said that to was her (the best possible kind of oops!); Linda Reilly, who manned the AMR table with me and was such a delight to spend the afternoon with; J.M. Snyder; and no doubt others whom I'm forgetting (I'm sorry, others!). I was hoping to meet more erotic romance publishers, but the only ones there I really recognized were DSP (a delightful bunch of folks!), JMS Books, MLR (who were giving out free books at the end of the day so they wouldn't have to carry them home, yay!), and Phase.

On the plus side, TLA Video was giving out free gay porn. I was on that like a condom on-- You know what? Never mind :-p

As for the fans and lovers of gay erotic romance, oh my, what fun it was to speak with them! It's the first time ever for me to be in a room with a bunch of people who would all knowingly nod their heads when you talked about certain writers, artists, and presses. It felt a bit like coming home, if you know what I mean, and I can't wait until the next conference so I can do it again. I also had some very long chats with Linda Reilly and Damon Suede (who graciously volunteered to be the "Male" for a while in our female-staffed All Male Romance table), where we discussed the ins and outs of marketing, how many people we'd blow to get an Anne Cain or Cris Griffin cover, favorite writers of the writers, and what to do with our vast piles of royalty money once we've bought a private island an a 60-foot yacht to get us there (*snort*).

I also answered the question "How/why do so many women write gay romance?" more times than I think is strictly safe for sanity. How come nobody ever asks female writers of het romance how they can write a convincing male character? One, two, five and a pony . . . it's really not that different. From people's responses, it seemed that nobody had thought of it that way. I was glad to be able to advocate a little for all the female writers of hot male smexins out there :-)

All in all, it was a fantabulous day. I picked up some swag--Dreamspinner was giving out yummy chapstick and AMR had some fancy pens made that I'll be shipping out to swag winners in the future--some free books, some free gay porn, and a whole bunch of new and exciting friendships. Can't wait to see everyone again!

* * * * *

And now for something completely different--a little moment of thanks, if you'll indulge me. I met a lovely lady on Twitter a couple weeks back (@firebird_55) named Melissa Moir, and it turns out she's an absolutely brilliant glass artist. We got to talking, exchanged some great emails, and what do I find on my porch this morning? Why, a present from Melissa!

This stunning fused glass tile is about 4 inches by 10, and is currently gracing a plate stand on my dresser. The whole thing was so lovely--not just the gorgeous tile but Melissa's kindness and generosity--that I felt quite compelled to plug the ever-loving crap out of her wherever I could :D So, follow her on Twitter--she's hilarious! Check out her website--she's brilliant! And thank you, Melissa, for being so, so awesome.
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