Sunlight Sucks

Welcome to Sunlight Sucks, erotic romance author Lex Valentine’s blog. This has been Lex’s blog since before Lex was Lex, back in the days when she was just Winter, blogging here and writing in an online serial story called The...
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Comfort Zone

I finished Kissing Joan Collins early Sunday morning and turned it in to my editor. It’s a short novella for Valentine’s Day and will be out at MLR Press. The story has a little more snarky humor than I usually inject into a story and it vaguely reminds me of chick lit stories. I dedicated the book to a fellow author because of something he said once that stuck in my head and became fuel for this story.

Usually, when I dedicate a book to someone it’s because they’ve done something that somehow influenced the story. It might be that they just encouraged me when I needed a boost to finished. Or they could have said something that spawned an idea. The smallest influence could be the reason I dedicate a book to someone.

In this instance, the other author said something about authors needing to step out of their comfort zone sometimes. I don’t think it was one of those profound things you say where everyone goes “WOAH.” You know what I mean – the “I coulda had a V-8″ moment. I think it was just something he said in conversation (I forget if it was on a loop, in a chat or in email) and probably didn’t intend for me to take away as inspiring. But I did.

You see this story is about how two men (it is a gay rom story) step out of their comfort zones one Valentine’s Day and discover a bright future together. The backstory is that the two guys meet in college and are instantly attracted to one another. They both react really dorky and are embarrassed by their actions so they each hide their attraction. They go on to spend their college years as roommates and best friends. As adults, their friendship continues. Then, one of the men leaves the area for a year for work. While he’s gone, the one left behind realizes he still has deeper feelings for his friend. The one who’s away realizes he loves and misses his friend so much that one, he needs to move back home and two, he needs to tell the other guy he wants to be with him.

The hero who moved away enlists the help of his friend’s siblings, who of course know their brother loves this guy. They set s scene that forces both men out of their comfort zone and confessions ensue. Of course, a hot night together also ensues. Followed by a morning with doubts and fears exposed. But they work it out because I don’t write anything but happy endings. LOL

The catalyst, the thing that forces the men out of their comfort zones…a dress. One man dresses as Joan Collins playing Alexis Carrington in Dynasty in order to get the attention of the other man. The sight of his friend in a dress has the other hero leaping the barriers of his comfort zone to try to get with him. So it’s almost as if the Joan Collins outfit is a character all its own in this book.

At any rate, it’s a charming little fun story about a guy in drag trying to nail his best friend. 😉 It will have the standard Valentine’s Day cover for sales at MLR Press and I made it a fun cover for third party distribution sites.

I’ve got other projects I need to get to next but I’ll probably take the next day or two and figure out which one should be next. Meanwhile, let’s round up this post with a lovely Marcus on this Monday morning.

Oh yum. Marcus and a fast machine. What a great combo! Everyone have a great Monday!


Six Sentence Sunday 57

You asked for it. Here’s what happened to Peyton’s wedding ring in Bad Choices.

A knot formed in Cooper’s stomach. “When did you ask her for a divorce?”

“Two months after Dev died. It became final a week ago.”

Dizziness hit her and she leaned back in her chair, gripping the arms tightly. “Why are you here?” she whispered, although, she knew now why he’d walked into her gallery today.

One of these days, I need to finish this manuscript. LOL BTW, I did finish Kissing Joan Collins. Expect to see it next month at MLR Press in time for Valentine’s Day.

Many thanks to everyone who comes by to read and comment each week. You can check out the other Six Sentence Sunday participants HERE. Happy Sunday!

The Art of Winning

In the four years I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve probably written on this topic before. I don’t have the time this morning to slog back through four years of posts though so here I am all prepped to talk about winning an argument. Yesterday, Nikki (Motley) and I were talking about arguing with people on the net. I’ve been around the net long enough (18 years) to know there is an art to winning when people on the net are contentious. It’s simple really. You walk away.

Now, for those of you who say walking away isn’t winning, I beg to differ. First, you have to understand the very nature of arguments on the internet. You have people who feel emotion A about a subject. You have people who feel emotion B about that subject. Each side tries to convince the other to change their mind/stance. And they do this knowing full well that they have an audience who is critiquing their argument, some of whom back stance A, some of whom back stance B, some who like to stir the pot, and some who just enjoy watching the fur fly. This leads me to the key to winning.

People engaged in arguments on the net or who are watching or backing those who argue on the net are all in it for one thing…attention.  Therefore, the key to winning is to walk away. Give no attention to these people. Ignore their contentious behavior. You will come out on top guaranteed.

I know lots of you aren’t going to agree with me on this. One reason is because none of us can stop ourselves from correcting someone who has their facts wrong. This type of argument isn’t exactly the kind I mean though. I often have to answer argumentative posts on loops from people who think that just because I used Amy Grant’s Breath of Heaven in the video posted on this blog that I must be infringing on her copyright unless she gave me permission. Um, wrong. And I can prove it. Get your facts straight before you accuse me of copyright infringement. The video is posted to YouTube who has an agreement with most labels for the use of their music. And a lot of artists can’t give permission for the use of their music anyway. Oftentimes, their label owns the copyright not the artist.

So the people who want to be contentious about copyrights and videos need to be told the facts. I don’t argue with them. I state the facts baldly (as I have above) and I usually post a couple of links to articles on news sites about the agreements with the labels and a link to YouTube’s own blog that goes into detail about how the agreements work. End of the argument as far as I’m concerned. I corrected their misguided statements with the facts and at that point, I walk away because there is nothing more to be said. If the contentious person wants to keep arguing their point, they can talk to themselves and their minions. I’m not going to argue with them.

Arguing on the net is a waste of time and the ability to walk away from wasted time and emotion is definitely winning. You are not ever going to change the minds of contentious people. No amount of logic and arguing your points will make them change their stance. You truly need to understand this before you let one of these people suck you in. And those of you who get into these “debates” in order to support, protect and/or defend a friend need to be especially cognizant of the fact that you aren’t going to change anyone’s mind. The best defense of a friend is to teach them to walk away.

People left standing on their own screaming their stance like Chicken Little look pretty ridiculous and pathetic. And they look like losers. So learn to walk away from these people because it really is the only way to win.

Now that I’ve given my lesson on winning net wars, here’s another Marcus from a past post to cheer up your Monday.

A winning stance wouldn’t you say? 😉 I think so, but then I think his arms are pretty sexy. LOL I hope you all have a wonderful, contentious free Monday!

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