Touch Me Gently E-Book Contest #2

September 3, 2010

The second contest:

I am going to list out three quotes from three different DSP authors’ novels. The rules are simple. Name the author and the title of each book. The first person to answer correctly will receive a free e-book from me. If you need a hint, post a comment and I will provide one for all. I tried to pull out enough information from the stories to make it slightly easier. Just checking to see how much of a fan you all are of Dreamspinner Press novels! :D

First Quote:

The cave was deep and twisted until they reached the end, where there was a small fire in a pit and a mound of animal pelts, prey animals taken during past hunts. It was warm, dry, and cozy. This was his secret place, the place that only he and his mate would ever see or know about. As I wheeled around to face him, I saw him walking slowly toward me on two legs, having shifted back to his human form before entering the cave. The man was beautiful, absolutely mouthwatering, and just seeing him, all that gorgeous gold skin over his sleek muscular frame, made my resolve falter. He simply annihilated me.

“I’m sorry,” he said softly, walking to the furs and kneeling down slowly. “All I wanted to do was protect you. I had no idea you were such a capable fighter or that you could do all the things you can do. I will never again underestimate you, and if you tell me you want to stand beside me, whenever, wherever, I promise I won’t second guess you.”

I just stared at him.

“That’s not to say that I will ever allow you to be harmed, because I can’t. I’m not strong enough to take anything happening to you.”

I moved a step closer.

“You saved me, and by doing that, you saved us all. I’m semel-re because of you. People will come to us, and there will be challenges, and now that everyone knows… there’s never going to be a dull moment, I can tell. But, Jin… I know you need time to think, but I can’t even rest without you, and I need to rest. I need my mate.” His eyes pleaded with me. “Come home.”

Second Quote:

 As Jonah watched, the man slid the jacket off broad shoulders to reveal a crisp white shirt and suspenders. Actual suspenders! Jonah suspected he would laugh at anyone who actually wore suspenders—he associated them with pocket protectors and clown shoes—but this guy actually made it work. More than made it work, in fact. He made it look… well, classy. When the man looked up at him, a smirk tugging at his lips, Jonah nearly stumbled back in shock. He caught himself on the window sash just in time to avoid putting weight down on the leg, but his heart pounded triple-time. His pulse was jumping as hard and quick as it had while he’d been lying in the stairwell the week before, leg screaming in pain and head throbbing.

 The man was looking right at him. Long, elegant fingers went to the buttons of his shirt, starting at the top and slowly unfastening them one at a time.

 Jonah was astounded. The man must have brass balls to be able to stand there and calmly initiate a strip show across an alley for a complete stranger. Of the same sex, no less. Jonah was pretty sure he hadn’t had a bright rainbow G-for-Gay stamped on his forehead, so he could only assume the man was brave enough to take a chance on him not minding the come-on. Or maybe his neighbor was more observant than Jonah was and actually noticed his neighbor’s activities. He might have seen Sean coming and going… and then going. Anybody who’d seen that fight would know Sean hadn’t been a casual roommate and that he wasn’t coming back.

Third Quote:

“Lucas? Look, I know you’re there and you know why I’m calling. I got a call from that DA in Atlanta and he told me what’s going on. He said Miller is getting out on some damn technicality and they wanted the local law enforcement to know the deal.”

 Pausing for a brief second, Sheriff Nicholas Demetris mentally cursed, because he knew Lucas was sitting in his living room, listening to the message as he left it, but the stubborn bastard wouldn’t pick up the phone.

As much as he loved the man, and there was no denying that he did love the man with all his fool heart, there were times when he desperately wanted to strangle him and now was indeed one of those times.

 Damn it, Luc; let me be there. Let me help you and love you.

Touch Me Gently Virtual Book Signing Cont…2

September 3, 2010

Second Excerpt:

Happy that he and Logan had the house to themselves, Kaden tried to ignore the churning in his stomach. Something had changed inside him that morning. When Logan had uttered those words to him in the hayloft, the final chip of ice on his heart had given way, melting away to nothing. He knew that he’d fallen in love with the big cowboy, a head over heels, fireworks-exploding-in-the-air kind of love. The realization left him with the desire to be closer to him, to explore another side of their relationship in the physical sense. His fear hadn’t just disappeared, and his hands shook as he washed the dishes from their dinner. Could he go through with it? It wouldn’t be fair to Logan if he started and had to stop in the middle. Determination to show Logan that he held complete trust in him stiffened Kaden’s spine, and he refused to allow his past to keep them from being together. He would just remind himself that Logan loved him, and would never hurt him, abuse him, or touch him with the intention of causing pain.

Logan could sense Kaden’s nervousness and wondered if his confession that morning had upset him. It caused him to doubt his certainty that Kaden felt the same, and as always, he couldn’t let Kaden brood over whatever had upset him, so Logan asked, “Is something wrong?”

“Hmm?” Kaden looked up from the dish he was drying only to find Logan’s eyes studying him intently. “N… no. Nothing’s wrong. Why would you think that?”

“You seem awfully jumpy if nothing’s wrong,” Logan commented.

Logan reminded Kaden of a detective. He had a way of seeing things most people wouldn’t. Or maybe he wore his emotions on his face like a coat on his body. Kaden had never been good at hiding his feelings. So he sighed and said, “Let me finish these, and then I’ll show you what’s wrong.”

Logan’s brow furrowed at the boy’s choice of words, but he shrugged and stood up to help him finish the dishes. Once they’d been put away, Logan took Kaden by the hand and led him into the living room. “Now, tell me what’s wrong.”

Kaden didn’t know quite how to put it, but he supposed he should just come out with it. Taking a deep breath, he looked Logan in the eyes and said, “I want you to make love to me.”

“No,” Logan refused stiffly, standing up to move restlessly around the room.

“B-but why? Don’t you… want me?” Kaden asked hoarsely, fingering the hem of his T-shirt, his heart pounding hard and fast. He didn’t understand the cowboy’s denial of his request. Did Logan really mean everything he’d said? Or did Logan say those things about his body being beautiful just to give him confidence?

“Kaden, I want you more than anything else in this world, but I won’t let you force yourself into something that you aren’t ready for,” Logan said heatedly, fiercely. His green eyes flashed, and his lips were turning white around the edges with how tightly he pulled them in.

“How do you know I’m not ready?” Kaden demanded, standing up straighter and glaring at Logan. “Why do you get to decide that? It’s my body and my choice. I….” He softened his words, looking down at his shoes. “I want you, Logan. Truly, sincerely want you. Please.” His voice had dipped to a mere breath of a whisper, and he blinked furiously, twisting his fingers in the hem of his shirt further.

Logan warred with his inner mind. He wanted to accept Kaden at his word so badly that it hurt, but how could the younger man truly know what he wanted? Sighing, he moved closer to Kaden, taking him gently into his arms and cradling him close to his chest. He rested his chin on top of the kid’s head lightly. “Are you sure? Absolutely sure?”

“Yes.”

He pulled back to gaze down at Kaden, a stern expression dominating his face. “If you feel afraid or uncomfortable, you are to tell me, immediately. Do you hear me?”

Nodding, Kaden beamed up at Logan, the grin beginning to fade as the emerald eyes darkened with passion. He licked his lips, wetting them and drawing those jewels to stare at his mouth. A squeak emerged from Kaden’s throat when Logan suddenly swept him up in his arms and started up the stairs to his bedroom. Logan slowly set Kaden on his feet, brushing a lock of dark hair back from his face before lowering his lips to cover Kaden’s. Kaden reached up to wrap his arms around Logan’s neck, his fingers twining in the sandy blond hair as they kissed.

Touch Me Gently Virtual Book Signing Cont…

September 3, 2010

Why I wrote about Kaden and told his story:

Kaden James came to life from a place deep inside of me. His past and the emotional and physical damage that he sustained in his short life is quite significantly deeper than my own, but he is no less a piece of myself. His scars are visible to the world while the ones that I carry every day are hidden so deeply inside that very few know of their existence. When they say writers write what they know, it isn’t a lie. No matter how hard you may try not to, a part of yourself is embedded in the characters that you write. It’s inevitable. Whether it’s a simple gesture or a character’s entire attitude, you are there.

Kaden’s reactions to emotionally-charged situations is not quite unlike the way I react. My heart starts fiercely pounding in my chest, my hands shake, and the possibility of someone yelling at me scares the hell out of me. The panic that races through Kaden is like acid, burning him from the inside out. It eats at you until you can’t breathe.  Uncontrollable and raging like a forest fire until it burns itself out or you find another outlet. Sorry if my description seems a bit on the dramatic side, but there are no other words to describe the feeling. It’s like someone dumped a bucket of ice water over you at the same time as lava burning you up internally.

The outlet that Kaden has is extremely unhealthy and dangerous. The more someone cuts, the deeper the cut has to go to stem the pain. And it’s addictive. It’s like a drug that you have to fight like hell to get out of its grasp. It’s seductive and greedy. Something that no one should ever try to use to get away from their problems, their pain, or their fear. Kaden’s sense of euphoria during one of the scenes is not far from the truth of how it feels. The physical pain overcomes the deep-seated emotional pain. It hurts less than the emotional pain. Though that does sound like a contradiction. How could the physical pain overcome the emotional when the physical hurts less?  Unless you’ve been there, it’s not easy to understand.

My hope is that someone may read about Kaden and the problems he has to overcome and perhaps realize that being strong isn’t about just coping or resorting to other means to escape. It’s about pushing through the pain, the fear, and overcoming it to be the person you were meant to be. Kaden understands that towards the end of the story when he goes through a chain of events and situations which put his newfound courage and self-worth to the test.

Touch Me Gently E-Book Contest #1

September 3, 2010

I wanted to make this fun for everyone who’s here with me supporting me as I launch the first book, in what I hope is the first of many, by offering a couple of contests for a free e-book. I will post the winner after both contests are complete and if you’ll send your email address to mine (jrloveless@gmail.com) I will get the e-book off to you as soon as possible.

The first contest:

Name 10 m/m pairings. They can be from television, movies, or anime. Not slashable characters, actual couples. You must name the characters (first name only is fine) and where they are from. The first person to submit a list of ten (accurately) will receive a free e-book from me.

Good Luck!

Touch Me Gently Virtual Book Signing

September 3, 2010

Good evening, everyone! I’m sure if you’re here you already know my name is J.R. Loveless. Although some of you may know me better as LovelessSoubi from the website Aarinfantasy. At least, I hope that there are some readers from Aarin here tonight. Let me start off by saying how thankful I am to Dreamspinner Press for accepting my story and giving me a chance to fulfill a dream. Writing has been a part of my life since I was a child. I’ve never wanted to do anything else. DSP has made the possibility of sharing my work with everyone a reality. They are an amazing group of people to work with and I pray to have the chance to do so again!

If you’ve read my bio, you’ll know that I live in Florida, that I have a dog and a cat, and I am totally obsessed with Doctor Who. What you don’t know is everything you’ll be learning about me and my characters tonight. How I relate to Kaden, where he came from in my mind, and what he taught me as I put his story down on paper. I’m going to start off by giving a small excerpt from the book about Kaden, and follow it throughout the next three hours with a few anecdotes about me and writing, a couple of contests for free e-books, and another excerpt from the story. Feel free to comment, ask questions, and of course, request an autograph on your book. ;-)

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Excerpt:

Kaden James shot upright in bed, gasping for breath, his body sweating profusely and soaking the sheets around him. Terror pounded through him as he remembered what he had tried so hard to forget. His violet eyes wandered around the shabby one-room apartment he rented, searching for any demons hidden in the shadows. He slumped back down onto the bed, struggling to control his breathing and to stem the flood of terror. That day’s events had opened the door to his memories again. Nineteen now, he lived alone, and today he’d been fired from another job. Fear of large men always ended up getting him fired because he couldn’t control his panic attacks. Sighing, Kaden ran a thin, shaking hand over his face. Knowing he wouldn’t be able to go back to sleep, he rolled out of bed to make himself a cup of coffee.

He flicked on a light and wandered over to the sink to fill the coffeepot with water. He set it to brew and sat down to wait, lighting up a cigarette. The apartment he lived in was all that he could afford, dingy and small with only one room that consisted of the kitchen, the bedroom, and a small adjoining bathroom that you could barely turn around in. His hand lifted to trace the ugly scar that ran from the corner of his left eye in a curve down to the corner of his mouth. No one wanted to hire him for anything other than grunt work because of his face. Most people found it difficult not to stare and wonder or be disgusted and turn away. Tomorrow he would have to go back to the labor agency and see if they had anything else for him. The manager had to be getting tired of him, but he couldn’t change the deep-seated fear that crippled him and sent him to his knees.

The coffee finished brewing as he stubbed out his cigarette, and he grabbed the only mug he owned, rinsed it out, and filled it with piping hot coffee. Sniffing appreciatively, he took a hesitant sip, wincing when it burned the tip of his tongue. He’d always been slender and almost feminine in some ways. His shoulder-length black hair, shaggy around his face, gave him an even more feminine appearance. It attracted men in a way he didn’t want. He might look tiny, only five foot six, but he was strong physically due to the many jobs he’d taken requiring heavy lifting. Despite the muscle he’d gained from those jobs, he still cowered when faced with dominating males. Emotionally unstable from everything that had happened in his life, he tried his best not to let those thoughts and memories control him.

Dawn spreading across the sky, Kaden rose to shower and dress in one of the few outfits he owned. Locking his door behind him, deadbolt and all, he trudged down the stairs, stepping around the drunken bum that lay at the bottom. The area he resided in couldn’t be considered the most sanitary, nor the safest, but it was cheap and the only thing he could afford. Traffic had already started flowing heavily along the streets of New York City as he slowly wound his way through the crowds of passersby toward the labor agency. When he arrived, he gave Terry Reynolds, the manager, a tentative smile.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do with you, kid,” Terry admonished quietly. He didn’t know the kid’s story but he knew something bad had happened to him. The haunted look that shadowed the boy’s eyes told him that much at least.

“How many jobs has that been in three weeks? Five? Let me see if I have anything else,” he said with a sigh, and Kaden gave him a grateful look, plopping down into one of the cracked vinyl chairs in the front office while Terry wandered back into his own.

Thirty minutes went by before Terry returned to the front office. He’d come up with a great idea, at least he hoped Kaden thought so. “Listen, Kaden, would you be willing to get out of the city?”

“What?” Kaden asked, his voice hoarse. He didn’t use it much. No friends and fear of strangers kept him silent a good portion of the time.

“Well, I know you have trouble with big groups of people, but my cousin needs someone on his ranch in Montana. To cook and clean. Can you cook?”

Kaden stared at him in surprise. He was an excellent cook, if he thought so himself. He loved to cook and had been doing so since he was twelve. “I… don’t know what they would think. I like to think I’m a pretty good cook. But… Montana?” The idea suddenly appealed to him, getting out of the city and away from the huge crowds of people.

“It’s only for three months, though. After that, you’d have to find something else. You see, he has a lot more workers and ranch hands coming in during the next few months because of roundup season and all. So he needs someone who can make food and lots of it. Can I trust you to do this, kid?” Terry asked him softly.

Kaden nodded and then looked down at his hands. “What about my apartment?”

“You’ll have to let it go. But if anything, when the three months are up, you can stay with me until you find another one,” Terry offered eagerly.

“Will your cousin mind that I’m a… guy?” Kaden asked quietly.

“I already called him. He knows you’re a guy and doesn’t care as long as you can cook. It’s not like you’re going to be sleeping with him or anything.”

Kaden’s head shot up and his eyes widened with panic, but Terry’s words sank in, and he nodded. “All right. I guess that’ll be fine.”

“Good. You’ll leave tomorrow. There’ll be a plane ticket waiting for you at the airport,” Terry told him.

He stood up jerkily, unsure of what the hell he had just gotten himself into, and headed back to his apartment to pack up the very minor belongings he had. There were few personal items since the apartment had been partially furnished when he rented it. The only things he had to take with him included several articles of clothing, the coffeepot, and the journals that he wrote lyrics in. He loved to write songs, beautiful heartbreaking songs. Something to get his fears out, and his desire to be loved, even though he knew that would never happen because of the emotional and physical scars he carried.

Touch Me Gently by J.R. Loveless

September 3, 2010

Touch Me Gently by J.R. Loveless is now available in paperback and eBook.

Always hiding his tormented past along with his scarred body, Kaden James finds it difficult to keep a job. Luck finally turns his way when he finds work as a cook on a Montana ranch, where he meets terrifyingly handsome Logan Michaels. Logan is different from any man Kaden’s ever met, and before long, he finds himself falling in love with the big cowboy.

But Kaden’s nightmares won’t let go of him so easily, and he’s not just jumping at shadows. He has nearly a lifetime of abuse, horrifying memories, and pain addiction to overcome. Can Logan’s gentle touch help Kaden heal inside?

Request a personalized copy of Touch Me Gently

September 2, 2010

Want a signed, personalized copy of Touch Me Gently by J.R. Loveless? Buy the book at our web site and leave your personalization request here on the blog. J.R. will sign the book for you before we ship it!

Serena Yates is Author of the Month at Queer Magazine Online

September 1, 2010

Please check out http://bit.ly/9mfYdw for an interview with details about my background, why I write, my current books and planned projects for the near future.

Seasons of Change Reading/Signing

September 1, 2010

Bent Pages, on Staten Island, the only LGBT bookstore remaining the 5 boroughs of NYC hosted a reading / book signing last Saturday following the release of my newest novel, Seasons of Change, published by Dreamspinner Press.  It was a terrific experience.

I brought a couple of supporters with me, and another dear friend who lives in the New York area met me there too. It was wonderful to have them by my side. In addition, several others joined in, filling the tiny store.

The reading went smoothly, with everyone laughing or gasping in the right places. The question and answer session became a rich discussion all participated in.

Everyone who attended purchased a book to be personalized, including the store owners — VERY flattering!

To get your copy of Seasons of Change you can order it at my Dreamspinner Press author’s page at http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_151  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_151

I copied and enlarged 2 passages to read

Chatting with event participant after signing book

Signing a copy of Seasons of Change

Jasper’s Journey by Lisa Marie Davis

September 1, 2010

Jasper’s Journey by Lisa Marie Davis is now available in eBook.

Jasper Brady’s world was forever changed when his sixteen-year-old sister Monica went missing and was found dead two weeks later. Depression struck the family, leaving eleven-year-old Jasper vulnerable to years of neglect and serious abuse until he ran away.

Thirteen years later, his father is dead, his mother is struggling to reconnect with him, and his sister’s murder case is still unsolved. Then Jasper meets Zander Macon, who believes the original investigation of Monica’s death wasn’t properly handled. Jasper surprises himself by agreeing to help Zander in any way possible, and it doesn’t take long for someone to respond to Zander’s questions with lethal intent. Trying to survive and solve the case, Zander and Jasper find mutual attraction turning into more, and Jasper will confide the dark details of his childhood while Zander works to overcome his own issues with the past.