26 April 2011

Struggling for Inspiration

I've been creatively uninspired for months now. Aside from one adapted short story, I've produced nothing of worth since last November. None of my usual tricks seem to be working to refresh the creative well, either. I blame the weather. No, seriously. So far this year, we have had a single day where the temperature topped 60F--and I wasn't even here to see it. Okay, I was coming home from a visit to one of my dearest friends who happens to live in NYC, and we did have a couple of reasonably sunny days while I was there, but it doesn't appear to have been enough. Funny thing is, I'm not a sunshiney person. I like the rain. I like the overcast skies. But, frankly, even I am fed up with them. I'd swear it's still winter here, except the crocuses are done blooming and the cherry trees are finishing up, too. Theoretically, that means it's spring.

::glances outside::

Yeah. Not so much.

Usually, a change of geography will jump start my creative brain. I figured I'd be all over my computer on the flight home, or at least once I got home. Again, not so much. So I must force myself back to the grind, which shouldn't be such a trial because I enjoy writing...when I'm actually writing.

If you have any tips or tricks that work for you, I'd love to hear them. I can't control the sun and my vacation has yielded nothing but happy memories and a few photographs. What do you find helps you out when you're stuck on the slow boat to meh?

02 April 2011

Release Day - Compass Hearts!

That's right! Compass Hearts released today from Torquere! Woot-woot! I'm so excited that this little novella has finally found a home and can now go out to readers who, I hope, will love it as much as I do. It's been a long road for this one, originally written as an anthology submission in 2007. Four years old and it's finally leaving the nest. *teary-eyed* But seriously, I very much hope you like this story. There are sexy college boys and cold winter nights. Put those elements together and what's not to like, right? ;-)

As the fourth son of merchant parents, Matthew Morgan has always been superfluous. The only guidance he ever received was to behave and stay out of the way. Now, at a university half a world away from home, he must discover who he is and what he wants. Too bad he's never made a decision in his life.

When Ash Thearon meets Matthew, the handsome fellow student he's been ogling all quarter, he finds him sweet, sexy, and more than a little puzzling. To solve that puzzle, he must first collect all the pieces, which is easier said than done. The new friends quickly become lovers, but Matthew's sheltered life has taught him only how to follow. Ash wants the give and take of an equal, and Matthew's tendency to try too hard to please others leaves Ash wondering how to teach him independence without losing him.

I think of this as a "quiet" romance. I'm not sure I can define that adequately outside of my own brain, but see if you don't agree with me when you read it. 'Cause you're going to read it, right? I sure hope so. And to make it easier for you, here's a handy link so you can buy it now! :-)

Oh, and there's a bonus scene available either at the above link or over on my website.

Happy release day, everyone!

01 April 2011

One Day More!

No, not until a new revival of Les Miserables, until Compass Hearts releases from Torquere!

And, to whet your appetites for sexy college boys, here's an excerpt for you.


He barely recognized his own voice as he went on. "The human body is... fascinating." There was a question, an invitation, underlying his statement. He hoped Ash would hear it and understand. Despite this sudden swell of bravery, he knew he couldn't say that out loud.

A slow smile spread across Ash's face. Matthew grinned back, guessing his message had gotten through. His guess was confirmed when Ash asked, "Have you ever had a live model?"

"No." Matthew's cock strained at his breeches. He yearned to draw Ash, see him stripped and posed. He couldn't remember ever wanting anything so much or so urgently in his life.

Then reality crashed down on him. His face fell. "My materials are at my apartment." In the time it took to get there and back, the moment would be beyond lost. And there was no way he was taking Ash back to his flat. He didn't want Ash to see it. It was so unbearably grim, lacking in any charm or comfort, especially when compared to Ash's quirky and inviting room upstairs.

"What do you need?" Ash asked.

"Charcoal pencils, largish paper."

"I have that."

"You do?" Matthew perked up at this spark of hope. It was almost too good to believe. "How? Why?"

"Botany class. We do a lot of plant sketching. I not only have charcoal pencils, I have pressed pigment pencils."

Matthew's eyes lit up and Ash grinned and grabbed his hand. "Come on." Ash pulled him to his feet and toward the stairs.

Matthew's practical side asserted itself and, still clinging to sense, he asked, "What about our books?"

"No one will bother them. Come on!" He practically dragged Matthew from the parlor. By the time their feet hit the stairs, though, Matthew was plenty willing to follow him up.

Inside the cozy comfort of the little attic room, Ash went immediately to the window seat. He opened it and fished around inside, coming up a moment later with a large tablet and a tin box. "Here." He handed the box to Matthew who opened it and looked in wonder at the myriad colored pencils within.

"Where did you get these?" he asked, awed and envious.

"Some of them I bought in town. Some of them my dad gave me before I came here." Ash flipped through the tablet of his botany drawings, Matthew looking over his shoulder. The plants were barely recognizable, and then only because he'd labeled them. "They're awful, I know," said Ash. He pulled a disgusted face. "It's all right to say so."

"I just have one question," said Matthew.

"Yes?" Ash turned and looked up at him. "What?"

"Are you actually passing botany?"

Ash burst out laughing. "All right, Master Critical." He flipped to a blank sheet and shoved the tablet at Matthew. "Let's see you do better."

"That much I can guarantee."

"I've never been an artist's model." Ash's eyes looked deep blue in the lantern light and his voice was husky. "Tell me what to do."

Matthew swallowed hard once. The heat and tightness in his groin were intense, and he was glad for the tablet he held in front of him. What was he thinking? He'd never get through this! Panic began to rise in him, quelling his arousal. No. I want to do this, damn it! Steeling himself and taking control of his fear, he said with as much authority as he could muster, "Strip."


And tomorrow I'll have an "author bonus" scene to post both here and over at my website. It will give you a little insight into a lesser-seen character of the novella. I'll also have a buy link so you can be the first on your block to rush out, so to speak, and get a copy. ;-D