Kaminishi by Jan Suzukawa

February 21, 2011

Torn between past and present, Michael tries desperately to be reunited with the samurai who has stolen his heart. Kaminishi (m/m) by Jan Suzukawa, available from Dreamspinner Press.

College student Michael Holden wakes up in an impossible reality: mid-nineteenth century Japan, face to face with Shinjaro Kaminishi, a living, breathing samurai warlord Michael has seen in a dream. Imprisoned by the warlord and interrogated about the future, Michael has no idea if what he’s experiencing is real… and then he finds himself back in present-day America.

Shinjaro’s commanding presence and smoldering sexuality draw Michael again and again to the past, where dangerous information is revealed and Shinjaro’s life is threatened. Through the mists of time and in the reality of modern Japan, Michael searches for the truth—and for the man who now owns his heart—Shinjaro Kaminishi.

A Bittersweet Dreams title: It’s an unfortunate truth: love doesn’t always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.

Buy in eBook
Buy in Print
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal, Historical–World, Bittersweet Dream
Length: Novel

Commitment Issues by Wynn Wagner

February 21, 2011

Can Sean rebuild his life after tragedy and alcoholism steal it from him? Find out in Commitment Issues (m/m) by Wynn Wagner, available from Dreamspinner Press.

A tragic ending to his first real love affair and the subsequent guilt sent Sean Roberts sinking into alcoholism, destroying his career and nearly costing him his life. After fighting his way back from the edge and with five years of sobriety under his belt, he begins to rebuild his broadcasting career, but love continues to elude him.

It takes a perfect encounter with a mysterious angel, several enthusiastic romps with an agent, and meeting the man of his dreams at an AA meeting to open his eyes again to love’s possibilities. Unfortunately, fate isn’t done toying with him and threatens to snatch away the joy he’s found with the beautiful Wyatt… but Sean is ready to fight for his life and for his love.

Buy in print
Buy in eBook
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Novel

The Real Thing – Excerpt 3 – By BG Thomas

February 20, 2011

 “Well, maybe you’d like to come out and see my spread some time?” Curtis said.

“I’d fucking love it,” Bryan answered. Imagine! A cowboy, a ranch, cows. And horses?

Curtis laughed. “That might be arranged, little cowboy.”

Cowboy? Did a man like Curtis think he was a cowboy? Bryan felt a thrill rush through him. God, it was just too much. Older man. Calling him by that word.

“Let me know,” Curtis said, turning back to Bryan with a newly filled pitcher. As he did, the light caught his face just right and Bryan could see the man’s eyes were an amazing blue. They seemed to blaze from his dark face and beard. He could also see the dark hair that showed above the opening in his shirt, and Bryan’s cock went fully hard. He could feel it leaking. And he hadn’t worn underwear. It was going to show!  So what? Let it! Let the man see how much I want him.

“You know you’ve got about the prettiest eyes I’ve ever seen?” Curtis asked.

Bryan started, Curtis’ words echoing his own thought. He blushed. “Thank you,” he said.  Bryan’s heart raced and the words went from there to his cock. He was going to wake up. He was bound to. It had to be a dream. Had to.  How else could this be happening?

“Surprises me a young colt like yourself would give an old man like me the time of day.”

“I don’t have much time for guys my age,” Bryan blurted. “They’re boring. Too… I don’t know. Smooth? Too soft. And they think they know everything. I like men who’ve lived life. Like… like you.”

“You’re so sweet, little cowboy,” said Curtis, taking his turn. “And those lips of yours look so soft.

Bryan blushed so hard he could feel his face burning.

“Makes me want to kiss ‘em,” Curtis said huskily.

Then kiss me! Bryan shouted in his mind, but was unable to say aloud. So instead he leaned into the man, head tipped back to the man’s superior height, so close, waiting….

…and Curtis stepped back.

Bryan’s eyes widened and a whimper escaped him.

Curtis snorted.

“I… I….”

“You what?” asked Curtis.

“I wanted….”

“I know what you want,” Curtis said, looking down at Bryan’s crotch.

Bryan looked down, and yes, his cock was clearly, almost obscenely, visible. Despite his inward bravado, he couldn’t have been more embarrassed.

Curtis made that deep chuckle and said, “But why don’t we just wait a little. The best things are worth waitin’ for.…

~~~~

WHEN they got to his apartment.…..Well, if you want to know, you’ll have to read the anthology!  Thanks for reading today!

Go right here to find things written by BG Thomas!:  http://bg-thomas.livejournal.com/11317.html

The Real Thing – Excerpt 2 – By BG Thomas

February 20, 2011

Bryan glanced down at his pitcher, saw there was no more than an inch left, and gulped down the rest of his beer. He wiped his mouth and handed the empty pitcher to the bartender.

Bryan nodded at the older man, noting his thick chest. He wondered if it were muscles or padding, and hoped for a little of both. The man nodded back and touched the brim of his hat, and for some reason that made Bryan’s dick tingle.

The man was a real cowboy. Had to be.

The bartender brought Bryan his beer and he lifted it in salute and took a drink. After that, he didn’t know what the fuck to do. Did he go to the man (Yes!) or wait? Let the man make the first move? But hadn’t he already?

Then—thank God—the decision was made for him, because the man got up from his barstool and then….

…headed for the bathroom.

Shit!

Should he follow?

A moment later, a heavy hand fell on his shoulder, and when Bryan turned, he was facing his cowboy. His heart nearly stopped.

He’s gorgeous, Bryan thought.

“’lo,” the man said.

“Hey,” Bryan returned, or tried to. His mouth had gone dry. “Hello,” he tried again. “T-thanks for the beer.”

“No problem. Mind if I sit with you?”

“P-please,” Bryan almost squeaked. Get a hold of yourself! He’d fuck this up!  Heart pounding, Bryan climbed up on the next barstool.

“I’m Curtis,” the man said and held out his hand and when Bryan reached out his own, it was nearly swallowed in the man’s larger one. It was rough with calluses, and Bryan wondered what those hands would feel like on his bare skin and he trembled at the idea.

“I don’t know if I’ve seen you here before.”

“I’ve been,” Bryan replied. “A time or two.”

“So what brought you out tonight? You meetin. friends, or are you alone?” Curtis asked.

“Alone,” Bryan said.

“Good.” Curtis replied, and gave Bryan the sexiest smile he’d ever seen.  I always like to go out on a Saturday night. Work hard on my ranch all week long…,

“Ranch?” said Bryan, his imagination soaring.

“I’m sure an operation as small as mine would just bore you,” Curtis said.

“No! Not at all!” Bryan tried to calm his voice. He was going to sound so green.

“Well, maybe you’d like to come out and see my spread some time?” Curtis said.

Writing The Real Thing – by BG Thomas

February 20, 2011

Cowboys…

 

They can be soooooo damned HOT!

 

And two cowboys?   *fans self*

 

When I saw the call for submissions for “Riding Double,” I didn’t know if I could do it…  I just didn’t know enough besides lookin’ was fun.  It would call for lots of research if I wanted to do it right.  And as I started a historical, it soon became obvious that it would not be contained by the word count required for the anthology.  It was going to be a novel.  Oh, well…

 

Then I remembered this gay couple I just love who have a ranch and they invited me to come spend the weekend with them.

 

And in no time. “The Real Thing” was born.

 

I needed to see “the real thing.”  Smell the air, feed a cow, give it a hug, see a real ranch.  Soon I was so excited; I could barely wait to get home to get to work on the story.

 

That’s why I dedicate the story to them, and to Ike.  (You’ll have to read the story to find out who he is!)

 

I write all kinds of stories just like I read all kinds of stories or watch all kinds of movies.  Romantic comedies (so called “chick-flicks—please!), science fiction, horror, adventure—but the most important thing for me is characters.  If a story isn’t character driven, then who cares how cool the idea is?  I’m not interested in it; either in someone else’s story, or writing it myself.

 

You can fine everything I have available at the present time right here:  http://bg-thomas.livejournal.com/11317.html#cutid1

 

I hope you’ll check them out!

 

Namasté,

BG Thomas

“Cowboys and IT-ians” by Xara X. Xanakas, in the ‘Riding Double’ Anthology, Post #2

February 20, 2011

The day I got the notification this story would appear in Riding Double, something changed. I was sure it was going to be rejected – after all, I’m not AN AUTHOR. I’m a writer. I like to write fun little stories that make people smile. When the contract came in my email, I sat there, stunned. Thrilled. Overjoyed. Terrified.

Spouse was getting ready for work, so I printed out the stack of papers for him to see and left them on the kitchen island. He was in full-on Monday morning mode, not really seeing anything and pushed them out of the way as he  got a bowl of cereal. I moved them back, and he just kept eating!

I put his phone on top of them and waited. Can’t you see what that is? Can’t you see I’m jumping out of my skin?!?!? FINALLY he looked down, picked up his phone, and noticed the Dreamspinner logo on the top page. When he asked what it was, I faked being calm and nonchalantly answered him.

“That? Oh, that’s my publishing contract.” He was so excited, he forgot his coffee. After twenty years of telling me I could do it, someone’s proven him right.

The morning after I signed the contract, I donated my compensation to the Trevor Project, through the Goodreads M/M Romance Group fundraiser. It felt like the right thing to do; some tiny gesture I could make to repay the group that’s given me so much inspiration, support, and encouragement. Whiner and Connie would not have existed, let alone been let loose on the world if it weren’t for that group.

The Real Thing – Excerpt 1

February 20, 2011

THE bar was dark, long and narrow, and since it was a Saturday night, loud. Bryan was surprised to see how busy it was as well, considering it was only nine-thirty.

Bryan decided to take it as a good sign and went straight to the bar to order a beer. When the bartender asked if he wanted a glass or a pitcher, Bryan opted for the pitcher. Then he leaned back against the bar, trying to imitate the pose of all the cowboys from his dreams, and took a swig of his beer.

He was feeling good. The beer was cold and went down smooth. Trace Adkins’ “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” was blasting from hidden speakers, and its primal fuck-me beat went right to his cock. It felt great.

As Bryan’s eyes scanned the room, taking in the men—mostly dressed in Western wear—he couldn’t help but wonder what it had been like for cowboys before gay men could gather so easily together. How did you cruise a man in a time where the wrong move could get you shot or hung?

He’d read that a lot of cowboys were probably homosexual in the Old West. If it wasn’t from discontent, anger at being on the wrong side at the end of the Civil War, or for some other legal reason, it was thought that men who loved other men went west to be in the company of men. At one point, if you didn’t count prostitutes, there was only one woman for every one hundred men, and later, about one woman to four men. What better place for “bachelors”—as they were referred—to go?

A tap on the shoulder brought Bryan out of his thoughts. He turned to see the bartender, who gave him a wink. “The gentleman at the other end of the bar would like to know if you’d like a refill.”

“Huh?” Bryan asked stupidly, and then looked and gasped at what he saw.  It was just too damned good to be true. The man looked like a cowboy through and through. Like the real thing.

“I thought you’d be happy,” said the bartender, who knew Bryan’s tastes.

The man looked like he might be twice Bryan’s age. He wore a red classic cowboy shirt and black hat. His skin was dark, surely from years in the sun, and he had a thick but well-trimmed dark beard touched with gray growing over a wide lantern jaw. And what a sweet smile! His eyes were nearly hidden in the shadow of his cowboy hat.

“Oh God,” Bryan whispered.

“What do you want me to tell him?”

“Rode Hard and Put Away Wet” by Kate Sherwood, from the ‘Riding Double’ Anthology. Post #2!

February 20, 2011

I had a hard time with the ending for “Rode Hard and Put Away Wet”.  Actually, I think I have a hard time with story endings in general.  It sounds strange, given the genre in which I’m writing, but I’m really not much of a romantic.  It’s hard for me to believe in a fairy tale “Happily Ever After,” and it’s important to me that my writing be believable.  So even in my novels, I tend to slip towards “Happy For Now” endings.  It’s not that I don’t think my characters stay together – I really believe that they do.  I just think that they have to keep fighting for it.

This was really clear to me in the Dark Horse series.  (Dark Horse and Out of the Darkness) One of the reasons that I was happy to write as many extras for it as I did (they’re available at my website, www.katesherwoodbooks.com) was because I liked being able to show that the guys were still struggling, but still holding on.  So maybe that actually makes me a total romantic.  I believe in the power of love.  I don’t think it can erase all obstacles, but I believe that it can give people a reason to keep fighting, even through the toughest times.

With “Rode Hard and Put Away Wet” my first ending was “The kid took the towel.”  That line’s still in there, but I go on for another five hundred words after it, explaining and elaborating.  It’s a bit of a violation of the minimalist cowboy aesthetic that I was going for when I started writing, but I think it makes sense.  Even in a short story, people need some degree of closure, right?  I might know what was going to happen to the guys after the shower, but that wasn’t quite enough; I had to give the readers at least a bit more to go on.  And I know it sounds sort of ostentatiously artsy, but I felt like I had to give the characters a bit more, too.  I like both of them, and I don’t want to leave them hanging.  So, another five hundred words.

I think I made the right decision, but I’d love to hear what readers think.  I’ll be in and out of the blog today, but I can also be reached through my website (address above).

Mr. August by K.R. Foster

February 20, 2011

Hello, everyone! *Waves*

I’ll be the first to admit that I was nervous about writing for this anthology. I tend to dwell in the land of fantasy and science fiction, and honestly had no intention of writing a contemporary cowboy romance.

However, my younger sister always tells me that I should forever be willing to try something new; as usual, she’s right.

Sometimes writing is like trying to breathe underwater without an oxygen tank—useless and impossible—just one step away from death. But sometimes, on occasion, a story just wants to be told and the words pour from my fingers without hesitation. Those are the stories that I most enjoy working on. Luckily for me, Mr. August is one of the stories that doesn’t want to drown me. *Grins*

Mr. August isn’t what I expected it to be, certainly didn’t head where I thought it would, and proved to me once again that the words are the mistress and I’m their slave. I hope you enjoy this daylong ride outside my comfort zone; I know I did!

Synopsis:

Colby Fremont, owner of Ghost Creek Ranch, has learned everything he needs to know about city boys. They’re only good at one thing—leaving. But famous photographer Ethan Walker won’t get off Colby’s property, no matter how many times Colby tells the damned boy that he isn’t interested in being in Ethan’s cowboy calendar.

Excerpt:

Colby Fremont huffed in annoyance and yanked open his front door to stop the incessant knocking. He took one look at the man on his front porch, glared, and slammed it shut again.

“Mr. Fremont! I—”

“No!” he snapped, perfectly aware that his gruff voice would carry through the door. When the knocking started up again almost immediately, he turned and stalked across the wood floor of his living room, boots clomping loudly.

The doorbell started ringing at the same time as knuckles rapped again, and Colby barely restrained the urge to take his shotgun off the wall and blow a hole through the door. He most certainly was not going to participate in that… travesty. Ugh.

After turning the corner and entering his large and empty kitchen (his workers were actually out working like honest men), he strode toward the back door, scooping his beaten brown Stetson off the table and onto his head along the way.

Smirking once he realized the aggravating harassment of his front door had ceased, Colby twisted the doorknob, opened the back door, and walked right into the bastard who was no longer on the front porch.

“Mr. Fremont, I’m—”

“Can’t you read, boy?” Colby asked, looking down his nose at the overly hyperactive runt who couldn’t possibly have graduated from college yet.

The too-thin lips snapped shut for just a moment. “Of course I can!”

“You sure? Because I’ve lived here my whole life, boy, and I distinctly remember there being a Private Property: No Trespassing sign way down by the mailbox.” He gestured off east, toward the dusty road that led onto his ranch. “It’s black and orange—damn near impossible to miss.”

“I did see it, Mr. Fremont.” The kid stuck out his chin, which lacked even the barest hint of stubble. Had the runt even hit puberty yet? His brown hair flopped in his eyes like a puppy dog, that girly haircut all those actors in Hollywood seemed to favor.

“Then why’re you here, boy?” he drawled.

Additional Information:

To purchase Riding Double, the anthology that contains Mr. August and several other cowboy tales, please go here: Riding Double.

My other published stories can be purchased here: K.R. Foster.

Additionally, feel free to e-mail me if you would like to discuss my stories, offer constructive criticism, or just talk about writing. My e-mail is kamerreon@yahoo.com.

Thank you! Happy reading!

K.R. Foster

“Cowboys and IT-ians” by Xara X. Xanakas, in the ‘Riding Double’ Anthology

February 20, 2011

Blurb: Rancher Vidar Stendahl—known affectionately as “Whiner”—has a way of dealing with animals, but technology doesn’t cooperate with him. When his office computer crashes, a call to the “Dork Squad” brings Constantine Bagnoli—”Connie” to his friends—to Stendahl’s Stand, and a case of mistaken identity leads to a showdown they’d never have seen in the Old West.

Excerpt: The sky was threatening to open up any second, and the Hereford calf was still fighting, stuck in the mud along the creek bank. Once the rain started, the creek would fill up in no time. Whiner sat high in the saddle and slung his rope over his head, letting it loose on the front swing, neatly catching it around the neck.

“Ho, Fly!” He stopped the horse short, tied the end around the saddlehorn, and neatly dismounted in seconds. At six-foot-eleven, and over three hundred pounds of solid muscle honed on the range, he’d have no problem lifting the calf out of the mud, but he didn’t want the animal running off as soon as he was free. Dragging one massive gloved hand along the lead line, he carefully moved down the creek bank to the calf, talking to him in soothing tones, attempting to calm him down.

“Just what in the fuck did you think you were doin’ down here? Huh? Don’t you know you could get us both killed, you useless side of beef?” He cooed to the frightened animal just as lightning flashed across the sky and the rain started pouring down. “Shh. It’s okay, boy. Just calm it the fuck down so we can both get out of here and go the fuck home.”

Whiner reached the animal and started stroking his neck. The calf bucked and tried to rear away, eyes wide with panic as thunder clapped around them.

“It’s too late to make you veal and too early to make you spare ribs, so you better calm down,” he baby-talked, using his tone and his movements to soothe the calf. “I swear, I will leave your sorry ass down here and write you off my fucking insurance if you don’t settle down. And Bobby Joe, I see you up there. You could bring your lazy ass down here to help, you know.”

“I think you and Butterfly got it covered, Boss.”

“Sure we do, don’t we, meat?” Whiner asked the calf. He managed to work his long arms around the calf’s forelegs and haunches and lifted, working him out of the knee-deep mud. The calf kicked a couple of times and then was free on the firmer ground high on the bank, trying to scramble away. Butterfly stepped back and planted her hooves in the hard-packed dirt at the top of the ridge, pulling the calf back against the rope. Whiner started to follow the calf up, but his boot got stuck in the muck, making him lose his balance and fall into the slop, one clean white sock poking out of the bottom of his very dirty jeans. “Fuck!”

Butterfly whinnied, shaking her dark mane, and Bobby Joe laughed at his misfortune, not helping Whiner’s mood one fucking bit.

“You’re fucking fired, Bobby Joe!” He knelt down and started digging in the mud for his wayward boot. “Goddamn it!” He fished it out of the mire but slipped again and fell forward, covering his last clean spot in the sludge. He heard Bobby Joe’s cackle over the thunder and raised a glare up the bank toward him.