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It’s been a while

Mostly all you’ve seen from me in years now are snippets and promos for others. Today I finally sent in a novel I finished writing almost five years ago. What took me so long? Glad you asked.

When I finished this at the end of 2018 beginning of 2019 there was a lot of turmoil going on. For one there was the whole fiasco with a certain publisher. While I am forever grateful for them giving me my first break, I will equally be forever disappointed in how that ended up. Hell it took me over 2 years to ask for my rights back because the depression was paralyzing.

Topping that was the utter failure of Blood Red Roulette. I’ll be honest, I still don’t get why it was stillborn. Maybe it was the rumblings of what was going to happen with the publisher. Maybe it was bad marketing (I tried but I definitely feel it was lacking). Maybe it was vampire burn out.

That said, vampires tend to do well. It had an amazing cover. And it was literally dead on arrival. I can count on my fingers how many reviews it got and I’m not sure I saw much payment at all. That took the wind from my sails. Was I a bad author?

I could rationalizing some of my others not doing fantastic. A polycule urban fantasy set in the 1930s is pretty niche, after all. But a modern day vampire story set in Vegas, I would have thought it’d do better. Hell I’ve had better sales on novellas and short stories than that novel.

Not going to lie, that crushed me. I had worked off and on for 20 plus years to get that story told the way it was in my head. I had been excited to share it with the world. That failure was gutting.

Just as I was picking myself up from that Covid hit. While you’d think we’d be reading more locked up in our houses, what I was seeing in social media was the opposite. Author after author – some relatively big names too – bemoaning having a release during lock down. We might be learning how to bake in our lock down time but apparently we weren’t buying books. I shelved the idea of self pubbing then.

2021 broke me a life changing accident in Feb. I destroyed my leg, nearly lost if I’m truthful about it. It took about a dozen surgeries to put it back together over the course of more than a month. I was hospitalized for over two months. I had to relearn how to walk. The leg has stents in it to keep the blood flowing below my knee. The nerves were severed and I can’t feel my calf and much of my foot.

2021-2022 was dedicated to recovering from this. I put off a novella I owed Ninestar Press (I DO need to get back to that) I did noodle with short stories (especially in 2022) even published a few but novels have now been back burnered for years. I started to blow the dust off my novel These Haunted Hills set here where I live. I edited it slowly, as meticulously as I could as I’ve lost most of my beta readers.

I finally sent it out. I feel like I’m starting at the beginning again. That’s not entirely true of course, I have a decade of experience good and bad behind me. I have high hopes for this novel. I have a duology I need to return to. I need to get another novella edited and rewritten because I think it has potential but it has problems. I have the framework of a novel that is also nearly 20 years old, started when I lived in Florida after yet another life changing injury. I think that might be why I’ve never pursued that one (then again when I first started things they were mostly only pubbing m/m and this is m/m m/f and unapologetically bi).

Am I back? I would like to think so. I am at least trying. Am I afraid? Yes a little but I’m also trying and at the end of the day I would rather try and fail than not try at all.

Rainbow Snippet

I am a little late this week because I was busy getting my first novel in a few years sent in for consideration (crosses fingers)

Back to Behind Blue Eyes. Aneirin is about to find out what he was given for his birthday by his friend who doesn’t think things through well.

Rioke returned with the ‘gift’ and Aneirin knew he’d never like this. Damn, Pherick for being so easily led. His gift was young, barely into his twenties, unless Aneirin missed his guess. If he had met the young man in a club, Aneirin knew the man would have taken his breath away. He’d been robbed of that critical element now, but for all the wrong reasons. His father would have been furious with this gift, which is probably why Masozi hadn’t tried to talk Pherick into this before now.

The Rainbow Snippet group can be found on Facebook. It’s a fun low-pressure snippet sharing group for LGBTQ+ fiction. Come join us.

Rainbow Snippets

I survived the first week of the semester. I’m not sure my sanity did.

Jumping back into it. Aneirin knows he’s about to get a gift he so doesn’t want from his wealthy friends. (still more than 5 sentences)

The feeling of dread spread. He knew what his gift was. He didn’t want it. How foolish could Pherick be? Maybe he was wrong. It could still be something else and he was reading too much into it. “This…” how did he say it without hurting Pherick? He was one of Aneirin’s oldest friends, and he didn’t want to hurt him.

“Here let me get the gift.” Pherick pushed a button and the door to the game room opened. Rioke, Pherick’s majordomo came in. She looked at her employer.

“Ready, sir?”

“Yes, Rioke. Bring in Aneirin’s gift. I know you might think it’s too much,” Pherick said, leaning over to pat Aneirin’s shoulder.

Aneirin heard the hints of doubt in his friend’s voice and Masozi seemed to as well. The man scowled at Pherick and said, “He’ll learn to like it quickly enough.”

The Rainbow Snippet group can be found on Facebook. It’s a fun low-pressure snippet sharing group for LGBTQ+ fiction. Come join us.

Rainbow Snippets

Well I am not off to a great snippety start but hopefully I’m getting my crap together now. I’m back to trying to get back to this story (work title Behind Blue Eyes) but I am still not quite there with These Haunted HIlls edits (mostly because work is being super extra)

Anyhow this is more like a freaking excerpt mostly because there was no place to break it to make it very interesting and it’s rather the pivotal plot point for the story. Aneurin (we met him last snippet) is from a ridiculously wealthy family but spends his time in his lab. He’s more interested in science than money. It’s his 30th birthday and his equally wealthy friends are giving him gifts, one that is going to horrify him.

“Well, Masozi and I pooled our gift,” Pherick said, catching Aneirin’s full attention. It would probably be something insanely expensive.

Aneirin’s mind raced through things he might want in that category. The list was surprisingly short. “You have my curiosity aroused,” Aneirin said, and his wariness, but he naturally kept that to himself.

That’s not what we want to arouse,” Masozi laughed.

Aneirin saw Mireio’s brow pinch. Her wary expression probably matched his. There was one thing he and Masozi differed on strongly. Well more than one thing. Masozi was an advocate for the Toy parties and full out orgies which had become part of their class’s favorite ways of blowing off steam. Aneirin’s late father had been trying to get the Toys outlawed. But there was one thing in the expensive arousal category, and it was something Pherick could be talked into doing. “You didn’t.”

“I know you’ve been a little down on the idea, but that’s a lot of your father talking,” Masozi said. “You need to relax a little.”

The Rainbow Snippet group can be found on Facebook. It’s a fun low-pressure snippet sharing group for LGBTQ+ fiction. Come join us.

Rainbow Snippets

The 2020s have been a giant ball of suck so I’m almost afraid to wish for good things in 2023. That said I am hoping for good because I have the first long thing almost ready since 2019. While I wrote in 2020 it was on other projects. 2021 I nearly lost my leg and I’ve been dealing with the aftermath ever since. Maybe 2023 will turn things around. Here’s hoping.

I’ve already shared from the long thing, These Haunted Hills and I’m almost through doing a final edit before trying to shop it around. In the meantime I’m going back to the SF wip that I would like to finish but I know it has some plot issues I need to work out. The file name is Behind Blue Eyes (probably not final title)

Before I broke for the holidays I was sharing some from Blue Eyes. Kaleo has left the prison world slum he was born into and while he thinks he is going to find work off planet, he’s actually been kidnapped and altered for sale. Now meet Aneurin.

So how does thirty feel?” Pherick asked.

It feels like twenty-nine. You know I don’t worry much about age.”

Aneirin leaned back, the form-fitting foam of his chair adjusting itself. He tapped the volume control of Pherick’s sound system, lowering it a bit as the Mishani symphony got a bit raucous. Aneirin counted himself lucky he even got to pick the music, but since it was his birthday, he got a pass on Pherick’s newest craze; whatever the spy-bots caught in ‘Slumming It.’ Aneirin didn’t like spying on the slums. What good could possible come of it, he didn’t know, but it had been a mainstay of In-Home holovision for over a decade. It made him uncomfortable.

The Rainbow Snippet group can be found on Facebook. It’s a fun low-pressure snippet sharing group for LGBTQ+ fiction. Come join us.