Monthly Archives: December 2014

A Little Respect

I’ve not done a publishing post in forever. It’s not really what I talk about anymore. However, given even the NYT is weighing in these days, why not?

Everyone seems to be talking about Kindle Unlimited, an “all you can eat” way of getting ebooks. For $10 a month, Amazon will provide unlimited access to a library of some 700,000 titles. As an author, I can participate in KU by granting Amazon exclusivity and accepting whatever they feel like paying me for that right.

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Make Me Uncomfortable

Anyone who knows me, knows I love books. I was the child reading by torchlight under the covers when I was supposed to be asleep, I was the kid who took a personal library on camping trips and car journeys. I did two degrees in literature and listen to audiobooks in the car. I have been known to sit outside my destination with the engine running for many many minutes, until my friends send out search parties to find me, because “I’m just finishing this chapter.” I’m also a history geek, a data-sponge. I have the sort of mind which remembers that the fastest human ever recorded lived in Australia 17,000 years ago and could sprint through wet mud quicker than Usain Bolt can run the 100m, but can’t remember whether or not I turned the oven off.

If I could only read one type of book ever again, it would either be historical or non-fiction. Whether we’re talking Bronte and Renault, or Ellmann and Wildeblood, I don’t care. I’m as happy reading Wuthering Heights as I am Richard Ellmann’s lyrical biography of Oscar Wilde. One of my all-time favourite books is Peter Wildeblood’s Against the Law. Wildeblood is a name largely lost today, although if I ruled the world, there would be statues of him in every town square. He was the first man in modern history to stand up and state before a court and before the press that he was gay (actually, he used the word “invert”). This was in 1954, and it cost him eighteen months of his life.

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WIP Sneak Peek, and Other Stuff

The Rainbow Awards 2014 are over, and I’m thrilled to announce The Dead Past was runner up for Best Gay Historical Romance!

 

 

Runner-UpSM WIP Sneak Peek, and Other Stuff

From the Honourable Mentions:

~ “I was immediately hooked by the old-style English but perfect writing style of this first book of probably a series which I am going to definitely follow.”

~ “The author drew me completely into the setting to the point I felt like I was there.”

~ “A killer lurking in the shadows, traumatized man, blood, murder and homophobic people… It seems there is no place for love but the author managed to write a gripping love story. Love it!”

Hugo and Tommy are thrilled 😀


 

Reviews keep coming in for the Free Men series. Joyfully Jay, Love Bytes, MM Good Book Reviews, On Top Down Under (NSFW!), Sinfully Sexy, The Blogger Girls, Men Over the Rainbow, Helena’s Heat, and Diverse Reader have all given The Slave five stars!

Don’t forget to check out my Goodreads profile for a couple of unpublished bonus scenes from the series!


 

And now for something completely different. This is the opening of my latest WIP (anticipated release January 2015), a contemporary romance between a children’s author and a building surveyor. Without further ado, meet Owen 🙂

~^~

I hadn’t wanted to be famous. Honestly. There I was, scribbling away in my little garret, the walls papered with rejection slips, a forty year old typewriter on my desk because I cared more about appearance than substance and somehow my cheap and cheerful little laptop didn’t set the right tone. I was a writer: I might never be rich or famous or far from the breadline but I was an artist, goddammit. I had a rep to protect.

So I’d sit far into the night, admittedly working by the light of a 60-watt bulb rather than a guttering candle, but I drank the coffee and smoked the cigarettes and dreamed of ending my days lounging, louche and indolent, sipping metallic red wine in a dark and dingy cafe on the banks of the Seine, surrounded by those who understood my artistic temperament and calling; those who asked no more of me than I strike the correct pose.

Saying I got bored of living off baked beans and freeze-dried noodles and sold out shatters the illusion, but that’s what I did. I went from being a skinny twenty-eight year old living in a poky flat on the cheap side of London to being a skinny twenty-eight year old with a couple of million in the bank in the space of a year.

I know, I know, I’m disappointed in me too—but fuck if I didn’t love it.

I can’t say that word now. Fuck. Can’t swear, can’t drink, can’t smoke. At least, I can’t be seen doing any of those things. Not in public. You think image management is limited to actors and tweeny pop stars? You’re wrong.

I was going to write the Next Great Novel, win the Booker Prize. I was going to be the Allan Hollinghurst of the Noughties. People were going to speak my name in hushed tones and the reviewers at the TLS were going to wank over my words.

I didn’t happen. I sold out. I wrote a fucking children’s book and it sold a bazillion copies.

It ruined my life.


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