Sailing on the Sunrise — (Gerry’s Lion)

April 24, 2015




This is Ashavan Doyon, here talking about the release of Gerry’s Lion.

I have a confession. This story originally started life as a submission for the Advent Calendar. I wrote it in the middle of my vacation in July two years ago. Competition for the advent calendar is really tough, and when it didn’t make it, I was heart broken. I loved the story of Gerry and his lost love Adam. For months it drove me nuts, until I finally just sat down and said to myself, what if this is the middle of the story. And I tried starting the story at Thanksgiving instead. For anyone who thinks this version has too much angst, try to imagine the Gerry that emerged in THAT story.

With Thanksgiving not working, I turned instead to the next holiday–Valentine’s Day. It was here, I think, where Gerry really started to shine again, and the angst balanced out enough to work. But I owe this story, in many ways, to a cruise I took with my long suffering husband, who endured me writing over 17 thousand words on a one week cruise to Bermuda.


I chose holidays to focus the scenes of this story around because they are moments of glorious potential drama, and that is magnified for many LGBT folks, as there’s additional layers of acceptance or lack thereof with their families. And we see a lot of that nuance in this story – from the angsty Christmas cruise that starts it, to the nervous wrangling of traditions for Valentines Day, to the mystery Easter egg hunt where they hunt for eggs painted brown and hidden in the woods. I actually found focusing on holidays a good way to move the story and also to jump it forward every so often, and I think it helped a lot with pacing the story.

What’s your favorite vacation/holiday story (either personal or in a romance?) I’ll be using the comments to help determine who wins the prizes!

Don’t forget to buy the book: (or in print)

–> my vacation story: On this infamous cruise, I was in one of the bars on the cruise ship in the middle of the day (it was almost completely empty) when I was approached by one of the other cruisers, who asked what I was doing. I explained that I was an author, writing gay romances. She blithely explained how those were her favorite, while her husband got redder and redder, sure she hadn’t heard me say “gay” romances. To this day I don’t know if she did, but I gave her my card, it would have been hard NOT to tell from that.

8 Responses to “Sailing on the Sunrise — (Gerry’s Lion)”

  1. Denise Dechene says:

    I haven’t been on a real vacation in ages. I did get together at a 30yr reunion of my nursing class. We were talking about our daily lives. I said I work part time and take care of my husband, who is disabled. And I mentioned I read a lot. My one class mate is about 15 years older than me. She got excited and asked me if I had read this book, I don’t even remember the name, that was getting rave reviews. I told her I read romance novels. She asked if I liked Danielle Steele. I looked at her and told her that I read gay romance exclusively anymore. She grew quiet and changed the subject.

  2. ashavandoyon says:

    Denise: that totally counts. I understand the gaps between real vacations. That cruise WAS our last vacation, our first in several years. I have one scheduled for this year though, and I’m determined… I’m going to make it to GenCon for my vacation. Cruising, oddly enough, is NOT my favorite, as I get sea sick – we usually choose cruises that dock for several days in Bermuda so that the sea time is basically focused into two days.

  3. Denise Dechene says:

    Funny thing about that reunion is we took a 3 hour cruise looking for dolphins. I did real well when we where cruising out at high speeds. As soon as that boat slowed down and started rolling, so did my stomach. Of course we found dolphins when I was sick and didn’t get any pics.

  4. Susan says:

    I was on a tour in Italy with my mother and her two sisters to visit my grandfather’s hometown in Abruzzo. While in Rome I was asked to participate in a skit in a restaurant. They did not know I knew some Italian, which I used in my “performance.” The owner asked me if I wanted an Italian boyfriend.

  5. ashavandoyon says:

    Susan: Funny how people assume we don’t know more languages. I used to scare the customers at the restaurant where I worked, because they’d be trash talking in Russian and never expected me to understand them.

    Italian boys are hot. I crushed over one in college.

  6. H.B. says:

    I don’t have a personal vacation that was my favorite but I just finished reading Cate Ashwood Thirty Things and I really liked the idea of a road trip.

  7. ashavandoyon says:

    H.B. – Road trips can be really fun. I was thinking about one from college actually, because the person I road tripped to visit just passed away. I think because of the road trip, those memories for me are really intense, and I’m glad, because I remember him so clearly.

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