Monday Holiday

Holidays on Mondays screw me all up and I forget to post. Anyway, Happy New Year to you all! I have a Marcus for you and two free books. You can take your pick which book is more your style. Then go ahead, download that puppy to your new Christmas ereader! My little gift to you!

 

 

You can get the het version HERE and the gay rom version HERE. It’s just a short story so it won’t even take up much of your time but it will leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling.

And now, here’s yet another retro Marcus to start off the year.

That is a double YUM for this holiday Monday! WOOT! Have a good one!

Too Much Christmas?

I might have had too much Christmas. Okay, that’s not exactly true since we didn’t have a tree or decorations or presents or even dinner really. But I’ve had too much of something since today I was exhausted and totally forgot it was Monday. I can’t miss a Marcus Monday! What was I thinking?

Honestly, I wasn’t thinking. My head’s been buried in writing, something it’s not really been buried in for about a year. But I have a lot of plans because lately, I’ve been uh…planning. LOL Thinking about my writing career and my publishers and the stuff I have out that isn’t selling, the stuff I have out that is selling, and yes, I’ve been thinking about retirement as well. Perhaps not retirement from writing altogether, but maybe retirement of this pen name once I’ve fulfilled all of its obligations. I’ve been thinking about a lot of things related to my writing career. So you all may start to see some changes in how I do things and what I release.

No changes to Tales of the Darkworld. The next book is still going to be #7 Fire Storm which is a continuation of Holden and Garrett’s story. I’m planning that for spring 2012. No changes to the Encounters series. Still plan on putting out Magic Lessons, Rituals, and Blood Lust. No changes to my plans for the other two books in my Spellbound Treasures trilogy. The second story is going to be M/M and the last of the trilogy will be Branson’s story which I’m wanting to write with my pal Jennifer Leeland for reasons you’ll discover when we actually do the thing! LOL Your hint is to take a look at what Jen writes. HEH. Branson is a lot more than anyone knows…

My plans for the Magia series are really backburnered at this point. I want to write it, but I want more experience with the Edwardian era first which is one of the reasons I’m doing Lords of Aether. Steampunk set in the Edwardian era in an parallel world still gives me some experience writing that era. Eventually, I’ll write about the Magia. Some day anyway.

Meanwhile, I will have a freebie story for everyone on New Year’s Eve. One version for those who read het and one version (slightly changed) for those who read gay rom. It’s called Finding Your Heart and it’s just a short story about a love that never died.

Anyway, since my post is late, I’ll not write too much. Just gonna give you all another retro Marcus, a photo I’ve posted previously but some years back, then sign off.

I could look at that all day. Seriously.  I think Adam Bouska needs to photograph him for NoH8. Anyway, sorry for the lateness. I didn’t even promo today. How I’m gonna sell books without promo beats me. Anyway, that’s it for me! Happy Monday after Christmas!

 

Do You See What I See?

Every Christmas season I tend to stock up on books. In part because there’s a lot of free stuff and coupons going around so I head over to the ebook stores and start picking up stuff. The next thing I know, I’ve spent a bunch of money and have a huge batch of books to read. This year isn’t any different than any other and I’ve been wading through the books I got little at a time.

At 3 am this morning, I started having issues with my asthma so I sat up in bed, propped pillows behind me and started to read a book on my phone. It happened to be one of several books I’d bought that had like 300+ pages. I read one of the long suckers yesterday and it kept me entertained until the end. Pretty much all of the scenes advanced the story and the bantering between main characters was great. The book I picked up at 3 am has been touted as a great book by a wunderkind author. Now, I managed to pick up a couple of books with that rep over the weekend so I expected an amazing read out of both of them. I haven’t read the second one yet and I’m not quite finished with the first one. But…as I was reading I thought, do you see what I see?

See, when people make a lot of noise over a book and author, I expect to be held in thrall. I expect to fall in love. I expect to not fall asleep while reading it. And while this was a great book and one I’d read again, I just didn’t find it to be what others said it was. It has a lot of perfect elements and it’s absolutely one of my favorite kinds of books, but I had one problem with it. It didn’t need to be 300+ pages. It had a number of scenes that didn’t really advance the story. Without the gratuitous scenes (and no they were not sex scenes) the book probably would have been around 200 pages and wouldn’t have put me to sleep (during one of those scenes that wouldn’t actually be missed had it been left out.)

I’m not saying the author wasn’t good, but I wouldn’t categorize someone as a wunderkind when they have that many scenes that just aren’t necessary to tell the story. This is a newer author and I wonder if that’s why the story wasn’t tighter, but it doesn’t matter really because this is how the publisher put the book out. The editor obviously didn’t think the scenes were gratuitous as I did. At any rate, I was a little disappointed. But, overall I like the book a lot. I just felt like the Christmas song – Do You See What I See? Obviously, other people didn’t so I guess I’m in the minority there.

It’s not like authors don’t do this all the time, have scenes that aren’t necessary to the advancement of the story. We all do it. It’s just that some people do it more than others. Now, lately, the authors I see doing that are ones who are the NYT bestseller list and who apparently have gotten a little complacent. This author isn’t that high up the food chain yet and I feel like it’s more a newbie mistake rather than ego. But people are all different and not everyone sees things the same way. I’ll buy this author again. I just don’t see them as the out of this world writer others did.

Here’s another retro Marcus for this Christmas week Monday.

He’s so yummy! And a nice warm beach scene is perfect for Christmas week. Don’t forget to head over to my author blog this week for some really special authors giving away books. I have Desiree Holt today, Shoshanna Evers, Alix Rickloff, Lisa Fox, Selena Illyria, Jennifer Leeland and Z.A. Maxfield all coming up this week. Great authors, great books! Have a great Monday!

 

 

Peppermint

So I found this air freshener by Glade that smells like peppermint candy. OMG. I have to spray it every few minutes! There is nothing better than the scent of things like peppermint, cinnamon and chocolate. This time of year all the cool scents come out. I’m seriously addicted. I want to take the damn can to work and spritz it to rid myself of all the perfume the women in my office wear. As an asthmatic, I wish it was a perfume free zone (I’ve actually seen some of these) but I know it won’t ever happen. So my peppermint candy air freshener would be really welcome!

It’s funny how much I love peppermint but all year long I avoid those little red and white ones they put by the cash registers at restaurants. Come Christmas I wan candy canes, peppermint bark, peppermint cookies, peppermint mocha creamer, peppermint hot chocolate, peppermint everything. I’m not sure why I love it at Christmas and avoid it the rest of the year. Maybe I just overdo it every year and it takes me a year to want to eat it again. LOL

The red and white are quite festive too so they are definitely an upbeat little candy, aren’t they?

Yesterday, I did a couple of chats briefly before I went to pick up Nikki (Motley) and while I was chatting, I worked on some video book trailers. I have a couple to do for clients and one’s a little problematic in that the hero has long red hair and nowhere am I gonna find a photo of that. So I have to be creative. That means I need to think on it. 😉 I slapped together one for my Christmas story Cupid Christmas though and it follows the blurb a lot closer than anything I’ve ever done before. I try to give a different take than the blurb when I do a video but the blurb for this story is so dead on it was hard not to use it. Here’s the video:

I need to toddle off to work now because it’s pouring buckets which means a slow drive for me. Before I go, here’s another retro Marcus for this December Monday.

Don’t forget to stop by my author blog for Gay Rom week of my 30 Days of Christmas. If you’re interested in that genre I’ll have gay rom books to give away all week. Hope you all have a great Monday!

Advertisement

Today’s post is a plethora of advertisements for the stuff I’m doing or did. I mean, c’mon, it’s Cyber Monday, which to an old internet hound like myself who’s been out here on the net since the early 90’s, doesn’t really conjure up thoughts of sales but of ahem, sex. Still, Cyber Monday is indeed a day of sales so I have a bunch of ads for you!

First off, my 30 Days of Christmas giveaway event is in full swing. We’ve already given away ebooks and paperback books and today, I have a really special treat for readers. Today is the release day for NightShift, the newest book by Kate Douglas. Kate is a prolific and amazing author. She’s also a really great person and I’m thankful to have her as a friend. Kate’s giving away two signed copies of NightShift on my Lex Valentine blog today so go on over there and leave a comment so you’re entered to win.

Next up is the great holiday story event happening at MLR Press. Forty six books! That’s right, there are forty-six holiday stories that are out or coming out. My story Breath of Heaven is scheduled for December 15. You’ll find the video for this heart-warming holiday story right here on this blog. I’ve already read some of these and they are amazing stories. Mia Watts’s story is touching and funny and incredibly hot! Z.A. Maxfield’s story is heart-warming and sweet. DH Starr’s story is a serious tear-jerker with a belly laugh ending. And Derek Adams’s story will send you up in flames.

We all have the same cover art over at MLR Press but when it goes to the third party distributors some of us will have individual covers in order to distinguish between the stories. Cover art is the first thing a reader sees when they are browsing titles and if all the covers look the same, you might get passed over because the reader thinks they already have that book. So a handful of us did an alternate cover. I did covers for Ethan Day, Z.A. Maxfield and myself. We’re not alone though. I believe there’s other authors doing the same. Here’s the covers I created for the three of us. You can also see these over at Winterheart Design.

I’ve got one other Christmas story coming. This one is Cupid Christmas which is the last of the Christmas Cowboys stories I’ve done for the past few years at Pink Petal Books. I can’t think of another couple so it’s time to end the series of Christmas Eve hookups and HEAs at Forbes Ranch with this one last story.

This week I’m launching a new project called Lords of Aether on December 1. This is a serial story, a really special serial story. It’s by myself and authors KC Burn, Charlie Cochrane, Jason Edding, Stephani Hecht, ZA Maxfield and Jaime Samms. It’s a gay steampunk serial. None of us have any experience with steampunk so we’ve been slowly building our world and characters. I’m the only one with serial story experience and it’s been fun teaching them all about how the dynamics work. I’ve missed The Bar a lot so the Lords of Aether will help me not miss it as much. They aren’t the characters I loved so well at The Bar and they aren’t the same group of writers, but the camaraderie and sense of creating together is the same so it goes a long way to easing that little hole in my heart.  I kick off the story on December 1 with a post about my character Anthony Banning whose former lover, Imperial spy Jack Starr, has looked him up because he needs help finding his missing current lover. As you can imagine, Anthony’s a bit offended.  Here’s a trailer for Lords of Aether. I whipped this up last night so I hope you like it.

And now, since I can’t remember what else I’m supposed to be advertising (I was doing a 2 for 1 book trailer sale for this past weekend at Winterheart Design, but no one took me up on it!) I suppose it’s time to post a Marcus and head on out to work. Since I’ve been doing retro Marcus’s (ie photos I’ve posted before) I thought today I’d post my favorite Marcus photo ever.

Oh yum. I love that photo! If any of you know Nikki aka Motley aka my kid, stop on over at her Facebook page. She’s got a bit of a political protest going on on her wall.

And that’s it for my big ole advertisement post this Monday. Have yourselves a wonderful Monday and don’t forget to keep checking my Lex Valentine blog every day through Christmas Eve. Posting a comment enters you for a chance to win that day’s books. Happy Holiday Season Monday!