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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Brute on audio!

This is a small rant and then a new release pimpage.

My life is too sedentary. Both writing and my day job--university professor--involve a whole lot of sitting in front of computers. Plus I'm inherently sorta lazy. I took bowling for PE when I was in college.

But the one type of exercise I genuinely enjoy is walking. When I travel, I pound the pavement as much as possible. The two times I've lived in Croatia, I loved not having a car.  I walked for miles nearly every day, not just because I had to in order to get places, but because I wanted to. Zagreb is a fantastic place for strolling.

Here at home, though, it's hot. And booooooring. I live among subdivisions of beige stucco houses. Block after block after block of this:
Yawn. The big excitement on my neighborhood walks is when I see a lizard, or when I get to read informative signs like this one:

I guess if I really wanted some variety I could cross the canal and walk past cows, almond orchards, and cornfields instead, but I doubt that would be much more interesting.
So I've taken to listening to audiobooks during my walks. I recently finished hearing my first novel, Stasis, which was a lot of fun. It really makes walking enjoyable. I've sometimes even gone around the block again because the story's at an exciting point.
And I am thrilled to announce that today Brute became available on audio too! You can buy it here. The narrator is K.C. Kelly, who did a fantastic job. I am so looking forward to my walks now! Who cares if all I see is beige stucco? I've got Brute!


Monday, July 7, 2014

Writing Jerks

I was going to title this entry "Writing Assholes," but decided that could be taken entirely the wrong way. And let me be clear--I'm not going to talk about writers who are jerks. I'm sure some writers are, but most of the authors I know are creative, fascinating, lovely people. What I'm going to discuss today is writing about characters who are jerks. And I don't mean the villains or exes or minor players either. I mean when a main character--a protagonist--acts like an asshole.

I don't mean sexy rogues. Han Solo is cocky and--at least initially--mercenary, but he's always likable. I mean the kind of guys who treat others badly, who make us want to punch them in the face. The kind of guys our sweet boys should just kick to the curb.

I suppose that in many genres, protagonists who are less-than-endearing are not only acceptable, but even expected. But I write romance. By definition, my protagonists fall in love. Doesn't that mean they should be lovable?

Well, sometimes. I mean, Colby in The Tin Box, he's capital-a Adorable. And what about perky Nicky from Housekeeping or sweet Goran from Pilgrimage? It's hard not to like them.

But my muse is a difficult bitch. People say that romance novel protagonists have to be handsome, so my muse gave me big, ugly Brute. And if protagonists are also supposed to be sweet--or at least broodingly appealing--my muse occasionally throws me an asshole.

For instance, there's Berhanu in Guarded. Volos is loyal and good and brave, but Berhanu treats him like shit. Even after Volos nearly dies to save him, Berhanu doesn't seem to appreciate him. I know a lot of readers were pissed off with Berhanu. Heck, so was I!

Another example of a character who's not very sympathetic, at least at first, is William in The Tin Box. He's infuriatingly uptight and he's borderline rude to cute Colby. I didn't like him much as I began to write him, even though I knew why he acted like he did, and I knew he was going to change.

I hope that by the end of the story, it's clear why Berhanu acted like he did, and I hope he redeems himself. I hope that readers fall in love with William as they get to know him, just as I did. I hope that folks agree with me that even heroes sometimes act like pricks, and that even dickheads can improve.

What are your thoughts on main characters who act like dicks?

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Haiku winners!

I am delighted to announce the winners of my gay romance haiku contest! There were some really wonderful entries, and I so enjoyed reading them.

First prize goes to Megan (@essgem) for this gem:

Later the men mused:
It had not been their best plan,
Coupling on the beach

Esepcially appropriate since I'm looking out at the ocean this very moment (look at that sunset!), and will spend the next week removing sand from my car.

And second prize goes to Angel Martinez for this very lovely poem:

Filtered sun shadows
Flashes of skin, hard muscle
Lovers intertwined

Beautiful! Congratulations to both of you.

Thanks so very much to everyone who entered. And extra special thanks to my wonderful panel of judges: Shira Anthony, Jamie Lynn Miller, Andrea Speed, and Tali Spencer. You can read more about them and their fantastic books here.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Please welcome Andrew Q. Gordon!

A Closed Door - Part of the Love, Loss, Laughter & Lust Anthology

From Wayward Ink Publishing

  LLLL Banner FB

First, thank you, Kim for letting me use your blog to talk about my newest story.

With the progress of LGBT rights, the challenges of gay men and their coming out is also changing.  Once upon a time—like when I came out 27 years ago—you were considered among the lucky if your family didn't disown you or freak out.  Have them accept your boyfriend and you were even luckier. It was the rare person who would come out in high school and usually it was because they had no choice, not because they'd made a choice.

But as more and more people accept us as we are, as we now start to marry in numbers, have children—either through adoption or surrogacy—it isn't uncommon for gay men to be completely accepted and supported at home. I won't say it's easy, or that no one is rejected—because sadly there are still far too many cases of those—but suddenly it's not some 'fantasy' that a person comes out in high school or college and finds acceptance among his family and friends.

In LGBT fiction and MM Romance in particular, this creates a new dynamic. Happy, well adjusted and well accepted characters are cropping up where the tension and conflict has nothing to do with gay bashing, being disowned, bullied or rejected. Now we're more likely to see main characters struggle with problems everyone else has, the difficulties of dating, work, school, and relationships.

In my entry in the Love, Loss, Laughter & Lust anthology, the main character—Orin Merritt—has the full and total support of his family and friends—well his college and beyond friends at least.  The tension and conflict in the story revolves around the loss of Orin's family and how he deals with his one time best friend who struggled coming out.  Moving forward I expect we'll see more stories where the main source of conflict won't be the struggles of coming out. Instead we'll see a broader swath of stories where the MCs deal with situations more mundane, but no less stressful—dating and relationships and how difficult those are all on their own.  It's something of a brave new world and I for one look forward to this changing face of our main characters.


LLLL Andrew Q Gordon

A Closed Door; by Andrew Q. Gordon

Orin Merritt left home after high school hoping to escape the hell his life had become since he'd been outted at thirteen.  When a tornado destroys his childhood home and kill his parents, Orin finds a new kind of hell. Blaming himself for failing the two people who always loved and supported him, he returns home and confronts his past in the person of his one time best friend, Thomas Kennett.  Thomas not only rejected Orin when he came out, he led the group that caused him to leave.  As he struggles to deal with his grief , he tries to fulfill a pledge he made to his parents before their death.  In the process, Orin learns that sometimes when you leave to find something, you might have left what you're looking for behind.
    LLLL Thumbnail

Love, Loss, Laughter & Lust Anthology, by Wayward Ink Publishing.

We’ve all loved.

We’ve all laughed.

Sadly, we’ve also probably all known loss in one form or another.

And, yes, we at Wayward Ink are sure we’ve all experienced lust!

In Love, Loss, Laughter & Lust, you’ll experience one or more of the “L”s as we take you on a roller coaster of emotions. Whether you like to sigh over the sweet, cry for the broken-hearted, enjoy a good laugh, or get a little hot and bothered, there’s something for everyone in this collection.

Buy Links:


As part of the release of the new Anthology, Wayward Ink is holding a giveaway.  Just click the code below for a chance to win a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card. Two people will also win a paperback copy of the book, and three people will win a WIP USB Extension Cord and Fridge Magnet.  There are 11 ways to enter and you can earn up to 20 chances to win.

About the Author:

Andrew Q. Gordon wrote his first story back when yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting with technology, he now takes his MacBook somewhere quiet when he wants to write. He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his partner of eighteen years, their young daughter and dog.  In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. 'insiders', Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball and seeing how much coffee he can drink in a day and not get the shakes.

Social Media Links:

You can find his books at

Follow Andrew on his website: www.andrewqgordon.com,

On Twitter:  @andrewqgordon,

Or just email him: andrewqgordon@gmail.com


Saturday, June 28, 2014


Hi folks! I have not disappeared from the face of the earth. I am actually halfway through a family vacation--which is lots of fun, but doesn't lead to much productivity.

We had some fantastic entries in the haiku contest! The lovely judges are currently doing their jobs. I'll announce the winner next week.

If you haven't done so already, you can download my novella Guarded for free. You can also buy my newest short, "The Border". And everything at Dreamspinner Press is on sale through the 30th!

Right now I'm working on two winter holiday stories and a short sequel to Guarded, this one focusing on Mato. In August, my Bosnian novella, The Pillar, will be available--with an amazing cover by Shobana Appavu (who also did the cover for Venetian Masks). I'm about to begin edits on my two October releases: the third Bones book, called Bone Dry; and my novella The Dance in the second Gothika anthology (this one has a vodou theme!).

I'm also in the planning stages of a website redesign. I'll have a new logo, a new look, and some new features. Which brings me to a question: what features would you like to see on my website? Are there things that could make your browsing experience easier, more fun, or more informative? Please let me know in the comments!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Haiku contest judges

I'd like to introduce you to the wonderful people who will be judging the haiku contest (There's still time to enter! Click here for details.)

The judging panel is:

Shira Anthony
Jamie Lynn Miller
Andrea Speed
Tali Spencer

I'm a big fan of all these authors and so excited that they've agreed to judge!

Here's more information on them. If you havent already, go check out their books!


In her last incarnation, Shira Anthony was a professional opera singer, performing roles in such operas as ToscaPagliacci, and La Traviata, among others. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle. 

Shira is married with two children and two insane dogs, and when she’s not writing, she is usually in a courtroom trying to make the world safer for children.  When she’s not working, she can be found aboard a 35’ catamaran at the Carolina coast with her favorite sexy captain at the wheel.

Shira can be found on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter (@WriterShira) or on her web site, http://www.shiraanthony.com. You can also contact her at shiraanthony@hotmail.com. You can find all of Shira’s books at Dreamspinner Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance Ebooks.

Blue Notes Series: Contemporary gay romances set in the world of music and musicians. Each Blue Notes novel is a standalone story, and books in the series can be read in any order.

Blame it on jet lag. Jason Greene thought he had everything: a dream job as a partner in a large Philadelphia law firm, a beautiful fiancĂ©e, and more money than he could ever hope to spend. Then he finds his future wife in bed with another man, and he’s forced to rethink his life and his choices. On a moment’s notice, he runs away to Paris, hoping to make peace with his life.

But Jason’s leave of absence becomes a true journey of the heart when he meets Jules, a struggling jazz violinist with his own cross to bear. In the City of Love, it doesn’t take them long to fall into bed, but as they’re both about to learn, they can’t run from the past. Sooner or later, they’ll have to face the music.

Mermen of Ea Series: High fantasy, high romance, set on the high seas.  Taren Laxley has never known anything but life as a slave. When a lusty pirate kidnaps him and holds him prisoner on his ship, Taren embraces the chance to realize his dream of a seagoing life. Not only does the pirate captain offer him freedom in exchange for three years of labor and sexual servitude, but the pleasures Taren finds when he joins the captain and first mate in bed far surpass his greatest fantasies.

Then, during a storm, Taren dives overboard to save another sailor and is lost at sea. He’s rescued by Ian Dunaidh, the enigmatic and seemingly ageless captain of a rival ship, the Phantom, and Taren feels an overwhelming attraction to Ian that Ian appears to share. Soon Taren learns a secret that will change his life forever: Ian and his people are Ea, shape-shifting merfolk… and Taren is one of them too. Bound to each other by a fierce passion neither can explain or deny, Taren and Ian are soon embroiled in a war and forced to fight for a future—not only for themselves but for all their kind.

Jamie Lynn Miller has been writing fiction since childhood and decided to take the plunge and go pro in 2008, finding to her amazement that people truly enjoyed her love stories. She’s a romantic at heart, and her tales reflect the desire we all have to find “the one,” persevering through trials and heartache for that happy ending.

Jamie has a degree in fine arts and has spent the last twenty years working as a graphic designer, though she’d much rather be writing. She was born in Chicago and still lives there today with her husband and their two furry, four-footed children, er… cats.

If she’s not brainstorming story ideas, you can find Jamie at a sci-fi convention, in front of a furnace doing glass blowing, or on a mat twisted into a yoga pose.

BURNIN' FOR YOU BLURB: Lucas Taylor is a New York City fireman at Station 127, dedicated to his job, even though it has brought him heartrending tragedy - the loss of his lover, Ryan, in an explosion.

Evan Singer is the new guy in town, a paramedic transferred into Station 127 and he sets his eyes on Lucas from the get-go.

Neither knowing who the other is, their first meeting is a night of passion and desire that awakens something inside Lucas he never thought he’d feel again.

But when Lucas discovers that Evan is a paramedic, it all comes crashing down. For despite the feelings he has for Evan, Lucas has vowed to never again get involved with someone on the job, after losing Ryan to it.

Can Evan convince Lucas to open up his heart and take a chance on love again, despite who Evan is?

Includes the sequel – Where There’s Smoke!

Things turn explosive at the FDNY when a young man Lucas rescues from a fire becomes an obsessed stalker, and Evan's altercation with a victim's husband threatens to end his career.



Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/ng25ocw
LuLu (Paperback and epub): http://tinyurl.com/ndxvae7
Kobo: http://tinyurl.com/nvj3toh
Barnes and Noble: http://tinyurl.com/ow92qj2
Dreamspinner: http://tinyurl.com/kvuj9on


Andrea Speed writes way too much. She is the writer of the Infected series for Dreamspinner Press and is Editor In Chief of CxPulp.com, where she reviews comics as well as movies and other stuff. She won a Rainbow Award for best horror/paranormal novel in 2012, and feels she may be ubiquitous on the web. But she is not (sadly) the Italian DJ of the same name that often comes up first in Google searches.

Andrea's newest story:  http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/collections/my-haunted-blender


Tali Spencer fell in love with writing at an early age and never stopped. Thanks to a restless father, she grew up as a bit of a nomad and still loves to travel whenever she can. Her longest stint in one place was Milwaukee where she went to college, enjoyed a series of interesting careers, and raised three surprisingly well-adjusted sons. She later married her true love and put down new roots in Philadelphia, where she lives in an ongoing Italian American family sitcom. At least she’s learned how make good pasta. When not writing, Tali reads everything from sweet goofy romances to medical research, manages her fantasy football team—go Gekkos!—and takes long walks with her loving, if slightly neurotic, poodle.

Visit Tali’s blog at http://talismania-brilliantdisguise.blogspot.com
E-mail: tali.spencer1@gmail.com
Twitter: @tali_spencer

Blurb for Thick as Thieves:

After Vorgell the barbarian fucks himself with a unicorn horn, he ends up in a cell with Maddog, a pretty young thief. It’s lust at first sight for Vorgell—but honestly, he can’t help it. Unicorn horn is a potent aphrodisiac, and now he can’t stop thinking about sex. Luckily, Madd is one male witch who knows how to put Vorgell’s new magical body to good use when he tricks Vorgell into a kiss that helps them escape.

Vorgell may desire sex in general—and Madd in particular—but Madd has no intention of being screwed by a man twice his size. He has problems of his own, including an enchanted collar that causes him to desire his most hated enemy. He wants that collar off as soon as possible, but that requires stealing a basilisk egg from the castle they just escaped.

Drawn together by lust and magic, the two men join forces and soon find themselves up to their necks in witches, wizards, and trouble. Vorgell and Madd might just be perfect for each other, but first they have to survive long enough to find out.




Saturday, June 14, 2014

Haiku contest! Prizes!

Two events coincided these last couple of days.

First off, I passed 1000 Twitter followers! Yay! My 14-year-old daughter says this means I am officially cool. So there's that. And I wanted to celebrate being cool because, well, it doesn't happen all that often. Sure, the next time someone cuts me off in traffic or an administrator at my day job does something obnoxious, I can think at them, "Yeah. But I bet you don't have 1000 Twitter followers."

Still, I wanted a slightly more public celebration.  A contest, perhaps.

The second thing is that I joined some friends for dinner in San Francisco. Got to hang out in the Mission. Had ice cream from Bi-Rite Creamery and bought stuff at the pirate store. Eavesdropped on hipsters. Enjoyed perfect, 70-degree sunshine.

But getting to the Mission meant a 95 mile drive, followed by a BART ride. Then the reverse on my way home. So I had time to think.

Ta-dah!! Haiku!!

Here's the contest.

You write a haiku about m/m romance. You can make it about the genre in general, about your fave characters or your fave books or your fave author--whatever you want. But it must conform to traditional haiku standards: 5-syllable line, 7-syllable line, 5-syllable line. Like this:

Chris is grateful that
He is allergic to cats
But not to canines


Have you read Guarded?
It is a free novella
You can download now

Post your masterpiece to Twitter--making sure you use the hashtag #kfieldinghaiku. If you don't Tweet, you can post it here or on my FB page instead. Here's a rundown of the rules/procedure:

1. Post a haiku with an m/m romance theme
2. Haiku must follow 5/7/5 format
3. Post it to Twitter using #kfieldinghaiku hashtag, or here, or to my FB wall
4. You may submit as many entries as you wish
5. Entries need not be in English
6. All entries are due June 23 at noon PDT
7. Entries will be judged by a fabulous guest judge panel
8. Judges' decision is final
9. The winner will receive: all three books in my Ennek trilogy (in print if you're in the US; in Kindle versions if you're elsewhere); a $10 Dreamspinner gift certificate; a $10 donation to the LGBT organization of your choice; naming rights to one minor character in a future story; AND a special surprise from Oregon (where the Bones books are set).
10. If there are more than 30 entries, I'll do a second prize winner as well: a print copy of either Pilgrimage, Motel. Pool. or Stasis (the first Ennek book), plus a special surprise from Oregon.

If you have any questions, feel free to post them here.