Thursday, July 24, 2014

New Release: The Shopping Mall Massacre (Zombies!!)

Sooo, I have a new release today. However, it won't be available for download on Amazon or the other places. The reason is that I'm expanding the short story into a novel that I'll be publishing it under the YA name Erica Archer. I've finished about 72% of the novel (which will probably be titled The Crazies), and I'm hoping it'll be out before the end of the year. If you have a Goodreads account (which is free), you can read the short story (about 15k words) here: M/M Romance Group.

The name of the story is The Shopping Mall Massacre and here's the blurb:

A day trip to the mall turns deadly for Bastian when zombie knockoffs storm the doors and start eating shoppers. Luckily, his college buddy Oliver is on hand to pull him to safety. 
Hunkered down in a toy store full of traumatized people with no help coming from an equally beleaguered outside world, Bastian and Oliver must find a way to keep their group alive and avoid the infected stalking the mall's hallways when they make their bid for freedom. It won't be easy to get out and stay safe while tiptoeing around the strong feelings the two young men have for one another.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

GRL 2014: Featured Author

I've been so busy with my new M/M Zombie YA that I forgot to tell you that I'm going to GRL 2014 as a Featured Author ^.^ That's right, I'll be in Chicago in October, partying with the locals and other attendees.

As part of the promo, I've been invited to take part in the GRL Blog Hop. I'm making four stops:

July 27: The Novel Approach
Aug. 11: Love Bytes Reviews
Sept. 2: The Blogger Girls
Oct. 6: Prism Book Alliance

Stop by on those dates, leave a comment, and you might become one book richer.

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Equal Rights Blog Hop

I'm taking part in The Equal Rights Blog Hop and I'm doing it differently than usual. Instead of commenting to take part, you'll need to use this Rafflecopter. Of course, you're welcome to comment, but it won't get you an entry ;) What I'm offering is an eCopy of Absolutely Eric. There are 29 other LGBT writers taking part, so there's a lot to win! To visit the other participants, you can either go to The Equal Rights hop page, or scroll to the bottom of this post for the link list.

The theme of this hop is to describe my first experience in the LGBT community. My first experience was the online writing community and that was pretty easy. I find the community relaxed and friendly. My first experience with the LGBT community in Iceland was two years ago when I visited the LGBT center in Reykjavik. Honestly? My heart was pumping in my throat as I walked in. I have no idea why. I think it was the excitement and a bit of nervousness of stepping into the building I'd walked past over a hundred of times before (and always looked at the flag each time). The one with the little rainbow flag on the main street. I talked to Árni, the director, whom I've visited many times since, and I asked him questions about the Icelandic LGBT community. He was very open and inviting and it gave me confidence to visit an LGBT masquerade, become a member to support the operation that is solely funded by donations, browse through their LGBT-only library, and visit an LGBT café and later a bar. Since I don't really know many LGBT people in Iceland (or just people in general, as I'm a pretty private person offline), I've gone to these events alone (which was hard but made me proud of myself), but I've never been met with anything other than friendliness and curiosity (which is probably normal in such a small community - "hey, who's this new girl?"). 

Anyway, back to the hop business: What you have to do to get an entry for my prize is to answer this question:

What does Eric want to find?

You can find a hint for the one-word answer in the first part of the below blurb. It's a four-letter word starting with L and ending with E. Come on, you can do this! 

Eric Wesley is short and snazzy, hot and happy. Or that's what he thought. After three years of living on the wild side hes tired of being a playboy and wants to find love.

Eric, however, has never been in love before and doesn't see that the guy who's been gazing at him all summer might be Mr. Right. Alexander Centauri isn't only style-less and clumsy, but also terribly awkward. After a miserable date, Eric plants Alex on another guys lap and goes after Mr. Wrong who looks so right.

When Eric realizes his mistake, it might be too late.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, May 16, 2014

Writing in the Closet (HAHAT - Giveaway)

Welcome to Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia 2014! Today is the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (or IDAHO, as it's called). Even though the names don't contain "Biphobia," we're fighting against that as well.

I've thought long and hard about what to write about this year. The purpose of the Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia is twofold: To spread awareness of homophobic, biphobic and transphobic discrimination, and to stand together against discrimination of our LGBT books. I'd like to address both today.

There's been some nasty development of LGBT rights (or lack there of) in the world since last year's hop: 

Russia passed an anti-gay law that prohibits all “propaganda” of homosexuality to minors. That means that people can’t do a gay pride or hold an LGBT poster out on the street because someone might take a picture of it and post it on the internet where a minor might see it (this actually happened and the sign-holder got arrested). As a result, violence against LGBT people in Russia has increased (watch this video at your own risk). The Olympic Committee decided to let Russia host the winter Olympics despite their charter’s principle 6 that says “Any form of discrimination with regard to a country or a person on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise is incompatible with belonging to the Olympic Movement.” Way to stick to your guns, Olympics Committee. Athletes and audience risked fines and possible imprisonment if they wore anything to the games that could be considered LGBT support (basically rainbow stuff). Some did it anyway, either discretely or blatantly. Power to the ones who did!

I posted about Uganda’s “Kill the Gays Bill” last year, and the Ugandan parliament has accepted the bill. The first thing the papers did was post a list of known LGBT people who are now in grave danger not only from the police but also from the general public. This law is inhumane, to say the least! It’s extremely hard to fight it because apparently the majority of Ugandans support this law. All I can do is continue to spread the word and donate money. I'm making another $50 donation to Icebreakers Uganda in honor of the day.

On the other hand, defeats are often met with victories. Russia, for example, watched the Eurovision Song Contest (the largest song competition in the world) and saw Conchita Wurst win. That’s the beautiful lady with the beard. Conchita was born a man but identifies as gender neutral. So, a lot of Russian minors watched a gender neutral person win, despite the creator of Russia’s anti-gay law 's insistence that Russia boycott Eurovision because of Conchita, claiming that Eurovision was gay propaganda. Conchita’s speech? “This night is dedicated to everyone who believes in a future of peace and freedom. You know who you are. We are unity. And we are unstoppable.”

That’s right, Conchita!

Some of you would be amazed to know that a lot of authors of LGBT literature write in the closet. Some can’t tell their bosses because they might get fired, some can’t tell their families or they might get ostracized. Some readers can’t even tell their significant other that they’re reading LGBT literature. These are mostly heterosexual people, by the way.

Copyright: NinaMalyna via DepositPhotos
I’m halfway in the closet, so to speak. My friends and family know about my books and fully support me. I think that most Icelanders would support me, however, I live in a small town and that’s why I’m afraid to fully come out. Twice this year, families have been driven out of town because of social media bullying by the inhabitants. Once because a man was posting naked pictures of himself on the internet where he was playing with his butt (or putting stuff up it). People went nuts online even though the guy wasn't targeting anyone with those pictures, the national media got involved (it's a small country...) and he ended up moving away. A more recent example is a teacher who was found guilty of bullying a student. The teacher's entire family – including his two young daughters – was bullied so bad that they've sold their house and are moving to the city (again, the national media got involved). This is why I’m afraid to announce on my private facebook account that I a) write, and b) write books that contain erotic elements. If you’re different, you’re talked about and it can either become a quiet gossip or turn into vulgar media violence and disdain. I don't care if I get talked about, but what I fear is that my young sons will get bullied. As you can see, my town doesn't exactly have a good track record and it appears that the national media (albeit the more gossipy papers) loves to shine a light on my little home town. I can only see the headlines: "Single Mother of Two Young Boys Writes Porn" and a quote in the gossipy paper "I'm outraged. My kids have been playing with her boys!" I don't know, maybe I'm just being paranoid. I'll never truly know how people will react until I reveal it. 

So, the question remains, do I risk my sons getting bullied or do I come out and announce that I’m a proud writer of gay-male romance? It’s a difficult choice, one that I keep debating in my mind. Some days I feel like writing a coming out post because it’ll be liberating and I'll be able to stand tall, but other days I can’t bear even thinking about it because of my 6-year-old sons. Unlike LGBT people, I do have a choice here. I can tell you this though: If I lived in the city, I would've announced it ages ago. Gotta love the anonymity in populated places.

So, this is a bit disjointed post, but I wanted to include bits from both purposes of the hop. Now for the giveaway part: 

I'm giving away eBook copies of every book I've written that contain the subject of homophobia (internal or external) to one winner. That's a copy of:

A Life Without You (internal homophobia)
Black Hurricane (internal)
Hot Hands (external) - this one is actually free for all
Cold Hands (internal/external)
Grade-A-Sex Deal (external)
Welcome Brother (external)
Little Stalker (internal). 

That's seven books of twelve that contain the subject of homophobia, so obviously the subject is dear to me. What you have to do is leave a comment below and a way for me to reach you (disguised email address, e.g. emailaddress at gmail dot com, or a link to your facebook page). I will use to choose the winner on the 25th and contact him/her myself.

There are 130 other people taking part in this hop, so please check them out:

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Autism Blog Hop

Edited: Congrats to Penumbra for winning a copy of Black Hurricane :)

Welcome to my day of the Autism Blog Hop. This hop was organized by my friend, RJ Scott and I was honored when she asked me to take part. Once I've shared my bit, I'll announce the prize I'm offering today (ends on April 20th at 11.59 PM).

RJ gave me a quote to share:

People with autism who have an extraordinary talent are referred to as 'autistic savants'

I don't have many autistic people in my life. We have a 14 year old boy in the family who is autistic, but he lives in north of Iceland so I don't get to see him very often. I do know that whenever I see him, he looks like any other kid, so you can't tell just by looking at him. This boy won't talk to strangers, but as soon as he knows you're "family" he's okay. He is wonderful to my sons who are half his age and he loves playing with them. 

The other person close to me who has autism is an online friend of mine - a fellow writer who's also mastered the art of photo manipulation and original art. He takes perfectionism to a whole new level and he truly is savant when it comes to creating art (though he'll deny this). Like my nephew, you can't tell he's autistic when you look at him. You can't even tell when you speak to him or message back and forth. He's like any other person and if he hadn't told me I wouldn't have guessed he was autistic. This post is dedicated to him (you know who you are).

Please visit RJ's blog to continue the hop (after you've finished entering my contest, of course). 

So, my bit about autism has been shared and here's my contest: From the comments, I'll randomly choose one winner who gets an eBook of their choice from my backlist. The contest ends on April 20th at 11.59 PM. Winner will be announced on April 21st. What you have to do is:

1) tell me which of these books you'd choose if you won and 
2) include a way for me to reach you (email or facebook link or something). 

Boston Boys (novels):

A Life Without You
Jesse's like a bar of soap: the tighter Adam holds on, the faster Jesse slips away. Or that's how it feels to Adam. It doesn't help that Jesse has a girlfriend back home and claims to be straight, but there's no way with all the sparks and physical intimacy flying between the two roommates.
When Adam believes he has reached his ultimate happiness, the bedroom walls come crashing down with a visit from Jesse's girlfriend.
Now Jesse has to decide if he can come to terms with his sexuality, while Adam has to learn to accept that Jesse might never be able to crawl out of the closet.
Absolutely Eric
Eric Wesley is short and snazzy, hot and happy. Or that's what he thought. After three years of living on the wild side hes tired of being a playboy and wants to find love.
Eric, however, has never been in love before and doesn't see that the guy who's been gazing at him all summer might be Mr. Right. Alexander Centauri isn't only style-less and clumsy, but also terribly awkward. After a miserable date, Eric plants Alex on another guys lap and goes after Mr. Wrong who looks so right.
When Eric realizes his mistake, it might be too late.

Black Hurricane
Twenty-three year old Jasper Jones fell in love with Dean McQueen at fourteen, but after a disastrous relationship, Jazz would like nothing better than to see the rock star choke on his own vomit.
After a catastrophic reunion, Dean seems bent on destroying Jazz’s life. It all started when an impromptu bar performance ended up on YouTube and Jazz became an internet sensation overnight. The name “Jazdean” keeps popping up in headlines and the paparazzi stalk his every move. To make matters worse, Jazz is about to end up on the streets for the second time in his life. 
In a desperate attempt to keep his home, Jazz signs a deal with Dean’s band, Black Hurricane, to perform at a couple of concerts. It feels like one of Dean’s feeble attempts to get Jazz back, but painted into a corner like he is, Jazz has no choice.

College Fun and Gays (short stories):

Grade-A-Sex Deal
When College professor Daniel Corrigan was brutally kicked out of his home after revealing his true sexuality to his wife, he had to make a whole new life for himself. For the first time in two years Daniels main heartache isn't the none-existent relationship with his two kids, but the fact that the grade-A-sex deal with his student Troy Anderson is about to expire. After a whole semester of office fun, Troy has managed to squeeze his way into the core of Daniels soul. Daniel, however, is positive hes nothing more to Troy but a teacher who can modify a grade.

The Walls Have Ears
Short and scrawny college student Harley Santos has a strange relationship with the guy on the other side of his bedroom wall. For weeks, the two have been masturbating to each other’s voices, but they have never met in person. In fact, he doesn't know a single thing about his wall-mate except that he looks and sounds incredibly hot.
When Harley’s roommate, Ryan, is asked on a date by one of his neighbors, Harley is devastated that his wall-mate mistook not-hot Harley for super-hot Ryan. Helping Harley through his heartache is Tasha Novokov, the other neighbor, who is tall, dark, and impossibly handsome.

Little Stalker
College student Coby is being stalked by a young guy and has no idea why until someone suggests that the stalker may have a crush on him. The idea both excites and terrifies Coby, who is so deep in the closet he can barely manage to think the word “gay” without freaking out.

Welcome, Brother
When arts student Kyler Morris applies for membership to The Nova Britannia Brotherhood, he's immediately floored by their intimidating leader, Hunter Kingsley. Fellow arts student Hunter, however, isn't the bad-ass he's made out to be and takes Kyler under his wing.
While Kyler struggles to keep his crush under control and his sexuality hidden from the Brothers, Hunter battles daemons of his own in the form of two Brothers who aren't playing by the rules. 

Cold Hands
“Hot-Hands” and Casper have been dating for a month, but their relationship is about as smooth as shattered glass. It doesn't help that Hot-Hands is racked with guilt over his high school bullying of Casper, or that Casper darts away whenever his boyfriend gets a little too frisky.
Desperate to hang onto Casper, Hot-Hands tries to earn back the trust he destroyed years ago, so they can face their disastrous past and have a chance at a happy future.
Cold Hands is the sequel to Hot Hands and contains big spoilers if read first. Hot Hands can be downloaded for free.