Guest Post: A Debut Author in the world of Lesfic by Emma Nichols

Happy Friday’s eve! I had a coworker who would say that every Thursday.

Today I’m thrilled to host Emma Nichols. She recently published Finding You and yesterday she released Remember Us. As I’m writing this, the books are number 1 & 2 on Amazon in the lesbian romance genre.

How cool is that?

And, Emma is giving away one e-book copy of Finding You & Remember Us to one lucky winner. Details are below.

Please welcome Emma Nichols!

A Debut Author in the world of Lesfic 

As a new author, getting my book published was actually the easiest part of the process. There are so many options now, that it can be confusing to the uninitiated. But, the world of Indie publishing has enabled many of us lesfic authors to get our stories into print; stories that would otherwise never have been published through mainstream publishing routes. Some may say, there in lies the problem; more trash hitting the market because there’s no policing of quality. I have to disagree. Through Indie publishing, readers determine what’s good and what’s not. As one well-known lesfic author said to me, ‘If readers want to read it, they will.’ My debut book, Finding You, hit the Kindle top 10 in the US and UK, 2-days after in was released – readers are reading it! Yes, I know it’s only Kindle, but it’s a great start. Ebooks, Kindle, Smashwords, and others alike have all made it easier for new authors like me to get the visibility we need, in order to find that illusive audience – the lesfic reader, but our readers can also help.

What makes a huge difference, and especially for a new author, is a review. Annette touched on the topic in her post here on 14th July. Feedback is really helpful for an author; the reader’s perspective enables us to write more interesting and engaging stories, which leads to greater reader enjoyment – and of course, better reviews too! It’s a win-win. We spend hours pouring over our manuscripts, tweaking this and that, recruiting beta readers and maybe even a formal editor. But still, the bottom line is, ‘Does my reader love it?’ And… ‘Will they say so, for others to see?’ The power of the review, for a book, to convince a reader to buy an unknown author’s work is immense. The reality is, many people say how much they love the book, but don’t venture so far as to put a review on the site from which it was bought. Sometimes, sadly, this is down to lesfic readers wanting to remain anonymous. As a new author, I reduced the price of my book and used the KU programme to gain visibility. All I can do now is hope that what people read they like, and that they remember my name. The reviews are coming slowly, but I feel constantly on edge, just in case that scathing comment comes in – a comment that is completely out of context and can be deadly, for a new author.

Sadly, there is still a huge snobbery within the publishing industry; precious and often highly opinionated literary purists, who would rather rot in hell than read some of the published books. Yet, the audience for lesfic is vast – different preferences, reading abilities, likes and dislikes – and I’d hazard a guess that most don’t want to try to read a work of literary genius. If they have to work too hard to make sense of the sentences, or follow the plot, they will quite frankly lose the plot, but they’re also not stupid and want a great story. I have put down some brilliantly written material technically speaking because it didn’t hold me – I’m not sure what that says about me? But this is precisely why there needs to be a wide range of material out there for us lesfic readers. Thank heavens for tools such as ‘look inside’ and sample downloads, which means a reader can get a sense of an author’s writing style and story line before buying the book – thus avoiding one of those hideous reviews.

There is certainly a lot of anxiety around putting yourself out there as a legitimate lesfic author. In fact, for me, coming out as an author has been more terrifying than coming out as a lesbian – and I had a mother who definitely didn’t approve! I’m one of those who people would prefer high visibility for my book whilst I stay hidden under the covers. But, shouting out from the rooftops, that a new book has arrived is necessary, otherwise we just won’t get seen, and those delightful gems will stay buried forever. Our only hope is that some of our readers will continue the shout once we’ve set the ball rolling. I concur with Annette – is it too much to ask that we support each other to provide a great flow of books?

Emma’s Latest Release: REMEMBER US

In this sequel to the best-selling lesbian romance novel, Finding You, Lauren Vincenti travels back to Corsica to recover her health and rebuild her relationship with her mother. But things don’t quite go to plan. Is Lauren able to let go of the past and will she comply with her father’s last wishes for her to take over the family business?

Anna Taylor-Cartwright’s career is hitting a new high, and her best friend, Eva, is in love.

Get ready to fall in love all over again, with the brilliant conclusion to The Vincenti Series.

Amazon US / Amazon UK

Author Bio

Emma Nichols lives in Buckinghamshire with her partner and two children. She served for 12 years in the British Army, studied Psychology and an MBA, and published several non-fiction books under another name, in sports peak performance, before dipping her toes into the world of lesbian fiction. Her debut novel is in two parts. Finding You and its sequel Remember Us.

Website / Twitter / Facebook

** Giveaway **

Here’s your chance to win Finding You and Remember Us. You don’t want to miss out!

 

 

 

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Guest Post: Write the book you want to read by Kathleen Jowitt

Howdy lesfic fans. Today, I’m thrilled to host Kathleen Jowitt author of the novel Speak Its Name. The novel was shortlisted for the 2017 Betty Trask award. Kathleen is giving away one paperback copy of Speak Its Name to one lucky winner. You can enter the contest below.

Please welcome, Kathleen Jowitt.

You know how they say that people write the books they want to read? Doubly so, if nobody else is writing the books that they want to read?

That’s what I did. I wanted to read the books where a young woman could reconcile her religious faith with her lesbian identity. So often the discourse seemed to assume that the two are mutually exclusive. I wanted to show that this isn’t necessarily the case.

Of course the trouble is, when you’re writing a book that you’ve never read, because it’s different from anything else on the market, it’s that much more difficult to sell. I always knew that I was writing in an obscure genre. It made it a bit difficult to describe.

I did my best:

‘It’s a bit like the Barchester novels – you know, the ones by Anthony Trollope – but set in the modern day, at a university, and with a same-sex romance.’ 

Or,

‘It’s like Dear Bob – have you read Dear Bob? – except in this one she really is gay.’

I’m not sure that anybody except me has read Dear Bob.

Or,

‘University politics. Christian politics. LGBT politics.’

Or,

‘Have you read anything by Alex Sanchez? It’s the sort of thing that he might write, if he was British, and if his lead characters were female.’

I did all the things that people tell you to do. I went through five or six rounds of edits. I got knowledgeable and ruthless friends to edit, too. I did my research. I approached agents who I thought might be interested. I approached publishers who I thought might be interested. 

After the umpteenth ‘thanks, but no thanks’, I put it aside for a couple of months, until it occurred to me that really, there was no reason why I shouldn’t self-publish. I knew I’d written something that I wouldn’t be ashamed to have under my own name, something for which I was prepared to take full responsibility.

It took me about four months to get from the point where I had a manuscript that I was satisfied with to the point where I had a book that I was satisfied with.

All the things that I’d vaguely assumed that a publisher would be doing for me suddenly become things that I had to organise yourself. I became my own type-setter, cover designer and publicist. It wasn’t as much work as I’d feared, but it still wasn’t something to be undertaken lightly.

But my decision to go for it on my own was vindicated this spring when I was shortlisted for the Betty Trask Prize, which is awarded to the best first novel by an author under the age of 35. This year it was judged by Joanne Harris, Michèle Roberts, and Simon Brett. I spent a good week muttering, ‘Michèle Roberts has read my book. Michèle Roberts liked my book!’

The lovely thing about the Betty Trask Prize is that even if you don’t come top overall, you come away with a Betty Trask Award. And I’m immensely proud to have that certificate on my wall.

The other lovely thing is that it’s presented at the Society of Authors Awards, and you get to meet all sorts of interesting people. In fact –

‘The Betty Trask Prize? I won that one once,’ said Sarah Waters.

SPEAK ITS NAME

A new year at the University of Stancester, and Lydia Hawkins is trying to balance the demands of her studies with her responsibilities as an officer for the Christian Fellowship. Her mission: to make sure all the Christians in her hall stay on the straight and narrow, and to convert the remaining residents if possible. To pass her second year. And to ensure a certain secret stays very secret indeed.

When she encounters the eccentric, ecumenical student household at 27 Alma Road, Lydia is forced to expand her assumptions about who’s a Christian to include radical Quaker activist Becky, bells-and-smells bus-spotter Peter, and out (bisexual) and proud (Methodist) Colette. As the year unfolds, Lydia discovers that there are more ways to be Christian – and more ways to be herself – than she had ever imagined.

Then a disgruntled member of the Catholic Society starts asking whether the Christian Fellowship is really as Christian as it claims to be, and Lydia finds herself at the centre of a row that will reach far beyond the campus. Speak Its Name explores what happens when faith, love and politics mix and explode.

Amazon US  /  Amazon UK 

KATHLEEN JOWITT

Kathleen Jowitt was born in Winchester, UK, and grew up deep in the Welsh Marches and, subsequently, on the Isle of Wight. After completing her undergraduate degree in English Literature at the University of Exeter she moved to Guildford and found herself working for a major trade. She now lives in Cambridge, works in London, and writes on the train.

Don’t forget to enter for a chance to win a copy of  SPEAK ITS NAME!

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Guest Post: Story of a Story: Mask of the Highwaywoman by Niamh Murphy

The fabulous Niamh Murphy is here today!

I’m so excited. To find out how I met Niamh, check out this post. Hint, it involved lesbian pirates.

Niamh is offering a FREE e-book of Mask of the Highwaywoman to one lucky winner. Details can be found below.

But now, here’s Niamh Murphy!

My writing experience has been sporadic. There have been fits and starts throughout my life.

I wrote plays and stories as a child, then moved on to poetry in my teens, but lost my confidence and lost my way.

3D2Throughout my early twenties I went through the same phases over and over: I wanted to write but I didn’t know what, I didn’t know where, and I didn’t know how to ‘make my mark’.

Then, in around 2009, I stumbled across a website some of you may know very well; AcademyOfBards.org. Although it started as a repository of Xena fan fiction (and there are some great ones there) it hosts so much more.

This was my very first introduction to LesFic, and suddenly I knew that all I wanted was to write stories for people just like me.

People who are tired of the same old male lead, tired of the female supporting role of ‘Damsel in Distress’, and most of all, tired of book after book after book of boy meets girl.

That was the day that Mask of the Highwaywoman was born.

It didn’t come all in one go. Far from it.

I wrote a very tentative short story, it was 3,000 words because I had read somewhere a 3D squareshort story should be 3k. In the story a young aristocrat is robbed by a highwaywoman and her gang, only for the woman to break into her room that night to return the items and steal a kiss.

[You can still read that very first story for free as part of my Magic and Romance anthology]

Although I was terrified of rejection I submitted my story for review.

There is no feeling quite like reading that first acceptance letter. No publisher, magazine, or website since has matched that thrill!

With the encouragement of my new readers I went on to expand the story, first to a 23,000 word novella and then finally to the full-length novel it is today.

So, if you’re a writer, I encourage you to take that first step and share the story you’ve been hiding away!

If you’re a reader, avid or otherwise, I encourage you to reach out to the author you’ve been reading, tell them what you thought of their latest work, or leave them a review.

Because, even if you’re writing to a Grand Master, your words will always make a difference.

About Niamh Murphy:

faceNiamh Murphy is a historian and novelist specialising in romantic lesbian fiction. She is passionate about experimenting with different genres and has a fondness for romantic action and adventure.

She has written stories with vampires, werewolves, elves, magic, knights, sorceresses, and witches as well as contemporary and humorous stories, but always with a lesbian protagonist and a romantic element to the tale.

Visit her website for a free copy of her short story, Gretel: A Fairytale Retold

Website / Twitter / Instagram/ Amazon

ENTER TO WIN A FREE COPY OF MASK OF A HIGHWAYWOMAN

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12 Days of Lesfic Christmas in July

12 Days of Lesfic Christmas July 17-28 

When I was a kid, the best holiday, without a doubt, was Christmas. Bubble lights, the scent of pine trees, candy canes, repeatedly watching A Christmas Story, lime sherbet punch, gifts, and so much more. As an adult, I’m not too picky about holidays, just as long as I get a day off from work to spend time with my family.

But I miss feeling like a kid sometimes. The excitement. And quite possibly I may just want to justify watching Elf three times so far this month, which is one of the best movies ever. My partner and I constantly quote it.

I know it’s July, but it’s never too early to try to tap into the Christmas spirt. There’s a lot going on in the world these days. I want to focus on the good. Which is why I’ve been feeling nostalgic about memories that brought me much joy.

I asked eleven authors to help celebrate 12 Days of Lesfic Christmas in July. Over 12 books are on sale for rock-bottom prices. Slip into tantalizing and heartfelt stories that’ll help you forget the real world for many blissful hours.

Below you’ll find all the goodies on offer. Before I get to all the wonderful authors and their books, I should get the basics out of the way. This sale ends on July 28th. Before you click the buy button, please ensure the sale price matches.

Now for the authors and their fab books:

SUZIE CARR

Suzie Carr is a contemporary novelist, podcaster on the Lesbian Talk Show, and avid blogger at Curves Welcome.

With eleven bestsellers on Amazon Kindle, Suzie continues to enjoy writing about the beauty of love and life. She believes strongly in giving back to the community. She donates a portion of book sale proceeds to the Hearts United for Animals and NOH8 Campaign. 

Facebook  /  Twitter  /  YouTube

BENEATH EVERYTHING  $0.99   $6.99

Somewhere along the line, Sarah Destin, took a wrong turn and ended up in the dreaded rat race of life. When she meets Jolene, a scuba instructor from Bonaire, she begins to crave adventure. By getting out of her comfort zone, Sarah soon begins to question what’s most important in life. Does Sarah have the courage to embrace her newfound discoveries, even if that means letting go of what brings her comfort in the process?

 

Amazon US  /  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


CLARE LYDON

Clare Lydon is a London-based writer of contemporary lesbian romance. She’s a No.1 best-seller on lesbian fiction charts around the globe – if you’re a sucker for romance, prepare to fall head over heels in love. When she’s not writing, Clare enjoys playing the guitar badly, watching far too many home improvement shows and eating Curly Wurlys. In her next life, she’d like to come back as Rayna James. (RIP, sob!)

Facebook  /  Twitter   /  Instagram: @clarefic

THIS LONDON LOVE  $0.99   $6.99

A successful editor. A workaholic florist. It’s complicated, but is it love?

Kate Carter has it all, except for a special person to share it with. The stylish, charismatic art editor has her sights set on someone, but a few unanswered questions keep her from making a move.

Meg Harding is single but stuck living with her ex. When she meets Kate, she sees a bright light at the end of her life’s dark tunnel. But it doesn’t take long for the florist’s secrets to nearly derail the promising pairing.

Can they overcome the obstacles they can’t control to find their happily-ever-after? Get this witty, sexy romance today!

 

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


ANGELA PEACH

Peach loves writing and racing buses round the South Coast, but her passion also lies in music. Shadoe Publishing has ’47’ which was her 1st novella. She has had number 1’s with ‘The Blurring’ and the smash hit ‘Playing My Love’ which held the top spot for 6 weeks and went to number 1 in 4 different countries. She also collaborated with Kiki Archer to bring together the ‘L Is For…’ charity anthology and after a short break from writing, currently has several projects she’s trying to furiously type up! 

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PLAYING MY LOVE   $0.99   $2.99

“I’d never believed in love at first sight. I mean, it had never happened to me, so I guess I just didn’t think about it. But then..

Darcy. Beautiful, kind, intelligent Darcy, who showed me a whole new meaning to the word love, and how to live when I thought there was nothing to live for. Was it love at 1st sight? No. It was so much more.”

 

 

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS

A DARKER KIND OF LOVE  $0.99   $2.99

Stronger than desire, deeper than attraction.

Relationships can be tricky, especially when your ex is still hanging around. For Hanna, meeting Sophie marks the start of something new…but first she has to convince her ex girlfriend, Mel, to let her go.

But Mel doesn’t want to let go. Ever.

 

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS 

 


CAMRYN EYDE 

Born in Australia with an overactive imagination, Camryn directs her creative energy into her favourite genre: lesbian romance. She has a habit of tripping over her own feet because she’s too busy rushing headlong into life. We only get one, so why not make the most of it?

   Facebook  /  Twitter

ROMANCING THE GIRL   $1.99  $3.99

Aimee Turner is a country girl, living and working on her family’s sheep station in rural Australia. Life is easy and full of hard, dusty work, but when her brother Joseph decides to become a contestant in a reality TV dating show, Romancing the Farmer, everything goes to hell. Justine Cason, the ringleader of the circus Aimee instantly detests is an irritating, arrogant presence that she is forced to chaperone around the massive property. The two women find more in common than trading insults the more time they spend together, sparking an unexpected connection neither was looking for.

 

Amazon US  /  Amazon UK   /  Amazon CA  /  Amazon AUS


LAYCE GARDNER & SAXON BENNETT

Layce Gardner is a screenwriter, a novelist, and a playwright. Her plays have been performed around the world and she is the recipient of The Los Angeles Drama Logue Award for Best Playwrighting. She has written screenplays for every major television network and her movie “Prison of Secrets” was Lifetime’s highest rated movie. She is the Goldie award-winning author of the novel, Tats. She is one half of a dynamic comedy writing duo with her wife, Saxon Bennett. Together, they have written over 45 novels and short stories.

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Saxon Bennett is the author of over twenty novels and numerous short stories. She has won two Goldie awards, the Alice B. Reader award for body of work, and is one half of the best-selling comedic duo Layce Gardner& Saxon Bennett.

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GIGALO GIRL  $0.99   $4.99

WARNING: This book contains comic situations, lesbian sex and comic lesbian sex.

When Mildred’s girlfriend runs off with all the egg money, Mildred decides she has had enough of small town living. She leaves her chicken ranch behind and heads for the big city of Bon Chance, Texas. Once there, she gets a job as a gigolo girl—and pleasing sex-starved lesbians is the name of the game. She meets another gigolo girl, Desiree Hart, and falls madly in love. But it’s against company policy to date a fellow employee. Can Mildred and Desiree find true love with each other or will sex get in the way?

 

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


NATASHA WEST

Natasha West has been writing for many years but has only recently plunged into the world of writing lesbian romances after she decided that a life of enjoying her own shouldn’t go to waste. She likes to write complicated characters who aren’t looking for love, but find it anyway. Via the funniest, hottest routes possible.  

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THE PLUS ONE  $0.99   $2.99

When Charlie Black gets dumped by her girlfriend Lucy just before her sister’s wedding, it’s the worst timing possible. Going stag to the big event after she told her entire family that Lucy was ‘The One?’ Far too humiliating.

Then Charlie happens across a website, ‘Rent-a-Date, a service that provides actors who will pretend to be anyone you want at social occasions, including Lucy. It seems like the perfect solution to all Charlie’s problems. But when Charlie turns up at the church, her Rent-a-Date has a surprise in store…

 

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


CARA MALONE

Cara Malone writes contemporary lesbian fiction with drama, depth, and plenty of heat! After nearly ten years as a librarian, Cara is transitioning into a full-time writer, aka. her dream job. She can be found writing – and caffeinating – in coffee shops around Northeast Ohio. When she’s not working, she’s usually caught up in a home renovation project, binge-watching terrible TV, taking a yoga class, or snuggling with her house rabbits.

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AWAKENED  $0.99   $3.99

Leah is starting a new job where she desperately wants to blend in and be anonymous. Her new trainer, Morgan, makes that difficult and the heat between them is impossible to deny. Morgan is mesmerizing but sullen, nursing a broken heart after her troubled ex-girlfriend, Allison, left one day out of the blue. Thrust together in the cramped quarters of a cubicle, Morgan and Leah can’t deny their attraction, but when Allison blows back into town with a terrible secret, it threatens to tear all three of their worlds apart and destroy Morgan and Leah’s budding relationship.

 

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


ELIZA LENTZSKI

Eliza Lentzski is the author of lesbian fiction, romance, and erotica including the Winter Jacket and Don’t Call Me Hero series and the forthcoming novel, Hunter (Summer 2017). Although a historian by day, Eliza is passionate about fiction. She was born and raised in the upper Midwest, which is often the setting for her novels. She currently lives in Boston with her wife and their cat, Charley.

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DON’T CALL ME HERO (BOOK ONE) 

$0.99  $3.99

It’s been over a year since Cassidy Miller retired from the United States Marine Corps, but try telling that to her nightmares. She knew that coming back after eight years in a war zone wouldn’t be easy, but she’d underestimated the real difficulties of transitioning back to civilian life. Looking for a fresh start, she’s left her friends and career in Minneapolis to be a police officer in northern Minnesota. It’s in the tiny town of Embarrass where she learns more about Julia Desjardin. The city prosecutor is cool, professional, and untouchable. For all their surface differences, Cassidy and Julia have more in common than they first realized—both are reluctant to hand over their pasts to be judged and studied. But it might take someone just as damaged as the other to help each cope with the skeletons in their respective closets.

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


SUSAN X MEAGHER

Susan X Meagher began her writing career posting Uber Xena fan fiction in the late nineties, progressing to publishing her debut novel with Fortitude Press in 2002. This July she will publish her newest, Fame, her fortieth.

Born in East St. Louis, Illinois, Susan has spent significant amounts of time in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York, where she now lives with her long-suffering wife, Carrie.

Susan was awarded a 2011 Lesbian Fiction Readers’ Choice Award for Favorite Lesbian Fiction Writer, and was also the recipient of the 2014 Alice B. Medal for her body of work. She has won three Golden Crown Literary Society “Goldie” awards – 2010 for Short Stories, 2013 for Contemporary Romance and 2016 for Contemporary Romance.

Nearly all of Susan’s novels are contemporary romances, a genre that speaks to her belief in happy endings for all who seek them.

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SMOOTH SAILING  $1.99  $9.99

Opening a new theme park is not for kids. Laurie Nielsen is so overworked and overstressed that she’s forced to take a vacation—on one of her company’s kid-centric cruise ships. It’s a slow torture, but she eventually makes the best of it and gets off the boat in St. Maarten. There, Laurie meets and insults Kaatje Hoogaboom, a woman who has very little of Laurie’s work obsession. But they still manage to hit it off—to her great surprise.

Once Laurie returns home they stay in touch, getting to know each other via phone calls and e-mails. But Laurie isn’t an ideal girlfriend. Work is at the top of her priority list and toppling it might be more than Kaatje is able, or even willing, to do.

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


GISELLE FOX

I love sitting down with a good book and letting my imagination run wild. Even better is bringing characters and their love affairs to life. I write lesbian romance with strong and complex characters, hot sex and a great plot.

 

Website  /   Twitter  

SUN CATCHER $0.99   $3.99

Cate craves excitement, and a trip to Panama to visit a wild and crazy friend from her college days is the perfect solution. The expat community there welcomes her, but Cate is more intrigued by Lexi, her friend’s beautiful but mysterious neighbor. Lexi is the very embodiment of passion and adventure, and the more time they spend together, the harder Cate falls. Then she discovers Lexi’s secret … and has to make a wrenching choice. Will love prove stronger than heartache, or has Cate found her dream only to lose it?

Amazon US  /  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


MIA ARCHER

Mia Archer is an author of bestselling Young Adult and adult lesbian romance. She lives in the midwest with her partner, kids, and cats, and loves writing stories about happily ever afters in small town America where she grew up.

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PRINCESS CHARMING $1.99   $3.99

Being a princess was supposed to be cool, but Amelia knew the truth. It sucked. One kiss with another girl. One media firestorm. One bummed princess. Dani was supposed to be having the trip of a lifetime. Only now she’s a social outcast after doing the right thing and dumping her boyfriend when she realized she was into girls. Two girls. Two worlds. One vacation they’ll never forget!

 

Amazon US  /  Amazon UK  /  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS

 


T. B. MARKINSON

T. B. Markinson is an American writer, living in England. When she isn’t writing, she’s traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs, or reading. Not necessarily in that order.

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THE CHOSEN ONE  $0.99   $3.99

Girls are a risk college freshman Ainsley Carmichael can’t take. Her powerful political family sees her as the Chosen One who will someday be president. Upholding a carefully crafted veneer is second nature until the first day of class when Maya’s mysterious gray eyes hold her in thrall.

Ainsley may be out publicly regarding her sexual orientation, but she lives under the shadow of the Carmichael’s ancient but shrewd matriarch in this contemporary lesbian romance. It soon becomes clear Maya is hiding something when she cuts their first kiss short by pointing out they come from different worlds.

The privileged world of the Carmichael clan stands in stark contrast to Maya’s limited means. Ainsley’s quirky and carefree cousin helps her investigate, only to discover details of Maya’s past are sketchy at best as the suspense builds in this work of LGBT fiction.

Will Ainsley’s love for the enigmatic girl enable her to break her Carmichael shackles?

Amazon US  Amazon UK  Amazon CA  Amazon AUS


Okay, I know I just threw a lot of names, prices, and links at you. Take a deep breath, and scroll back up to see which of the above titles you need to add to your library. I don’t want you to miss out on getting all these fab books before the sale ends on July 28th. Act fast! Time is running out.

 

 

 

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Guest Post: The World of Lesfic by Annette Mori and a Book Giveaway

Howdy folks!

Today, Annette Mori is here. Not only that, she’s agreed to giveaway one e-book copy of her latest THE ORGANIZATION. Details below.

Please welcome Annette!

Lately I’ve been a part of healthy discussion around the world of lesfic and there are vastly different perspectives regarding lesbian books written by male authors or straight women. A number of authors prefer to remain private about themselves and their lives outside of writing. I’m not quite sure how a person determines whether an author is straight, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgender, questioning, etc. Sure, some of us are quite open about our sexuality, talking about our partners or wives, but that is not always the case. In a few instances, there are authors who falsely present themselves as a female author of lesfic. The most recent example was an author who simply changed a few names in a m/m romance to make it a f/f romance. That has generated quite a bit of discussion. I land solidly on the side of that is wrong and I won’t support any authors who actively deceive their readers.

In these threads, there are some who defend the men who pass themselves off as women or create the same story in multiple sub-genres. Examples are thrown out about how women authors would pass themselves off as men so they could sell their work. Yes, that is a historical fact. Many of the very well know female authors such as Louisa Mae Alcott, the Bronte sisters, Mary Ann Evans (George Eliot) or more recently JK Rowling and Nora Roberts. Well, I’m not buying it. There is nothing remotely similar about women being taken seriously as writers and thus using a male pseudonym with male authors pretending to be lesbians to sell lesfic. When women make the same wage as men, or lesbian fiction has a much broader audience, then go ahead toss that argument out, but at this point I just see that as a slap in the face. Why would a privileged male need to do that?

The quality of the story should be the only thing that counts is another point often cited in these threads. On occasion, I’ve felt like I have to defend my position on this topic and that my perspective is less valid because surely a true connoisseur of quality fiction does not limit themselves to one subgenre or one gender. I respect that view, but have decided that I’d like to pay it forward to all those who have supported my writing as a new lesbian author. Although I have purchased lesfic from male authors and from time to time I’ll pick up a mainstream non-lesfic book, for the most part I tend to want to spend my dollars on supporting new lesfic authors who are women or don’t receive the same level of press as the biggies. I also tend to support fellow lesbians. If that makes me bigoted, then so be it. Let’s face it, lesbian fiction and specifically lesbian authors who only write lesbian fiction are a very tiny subset of the writing community and dammit they deserve more support than they get.

I stopped reading posts on Goodreads because of the vitriol surrounding lesbian fiction. To a lesser degree, I find the same thing on Amazon. I once received a particularly scathing review, which was probably valid in the criticism of my work, and yet I took great exception to the parting jab aimed at lesbian fiction in general. The last line in the review, “I’m officially sick of lesbian fiction,” seemed an unnecessary thing to say and painted a broad brush over the sub-genre I adore. The opinion that lesbian fiction is mostly crap, poorly written, garbage that is not worth considering runs rampant. The utterly amazing thing is that those posts are front and center, and embedded within Lesbian Fiction groups or from lesbians themselves. That just makes me sad, but I don’t respond to the contempt. What’s the point? I won’t ever change that perspective. It will just ratchet up the hatespeak and be perceived as defensive. Is internal homophobia at play here. I don’t know. I won’t even venture into that tangled web.

Sometimes I feel like others are looking at me, shaking their heads and thinking I don’t have discriminating taste when it comes to my preference in literature, because I predominantly stick to lesbian romance. It reminds me of those occasions when someone has looked down their nose at me when I state I prefer a 10-dollar bottle of wine over a 50-dollar bottle of wine. It’s as if they are saying, I have no class, no taste at all. Some of the best books in lesbian fiction or romance that I have ever read never make it into the top 100. I’d like to find a way to ferret those books out and give them the accolades they deserve. Whenever I come across a book like that, I try to put it out there for others to see. I don’t want those gems to go away because we don’t support one another, but there’s only so much one person or a few people can do. Maybe we need a list of the best lesbian romance novels that no-one knows about. Finally, after many years in the desert, there is enough quality lesbian romance and fiction out there. I’m old enough to remember how the selection was so limited, I had to scrounge around for my next book to read. I don’t want to return to the desert. Is it too much to ask that we support one another and continue to provide the flow of great books?

The Organization

The feisty, fiery women from Asset Management are back for another heart-stopping adventure! This time, their sites are set on a new mob boss Leonid Petrov who is more cunning and ten times more ruthless than the slave trader they took on in Asset Management.

No one is more surprised than Val when she is tagged as the go-to member of the team. Her task…infiltrate Leonid’s inner circle and work with another agent already on the inside. Val’s impenetrable exterior is starting to crumble, but Maggie, the head of The Organization doesn’t have a better option. Tasked with keeping Leonid’s impossible new wife, Gina, safe, Val encounters more problems than solutions.

Amazon US / Amazon UK

Annette Mori

Annette Mori is an award-winning author who lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her wife and their five furry kids. With eight (soon to be nine) published novels and one Goldie Award for her fourth novel, Locked Inside, she finally feels like a real author. Annette is as much a reader as a writer and always looking for the next lesfic novel to cue up. 

Drop her a line she loves to hear from readers: annettemori0859@gmail.com or sign up for her mailing list . You can also follow her blog here. 

Before you go, enter for a chance to win a copy of THE ORGANIZATION!

 

Thanks Annette for popping by today.

Posted in Giveaway, Guest Post, Lesfic Author | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments

I Heart Lesfic New Releases Newsletter

I’m always late to the party. Not a real party, which I usually show up right on time for, much to the annoyance of the host. What can I say? I was born on my exact due date. It’s been my thing since birth.

What I’m actually referring to is not hearing about the latest trends until they aren’t hot anymore. Quick question, are mood rings still cool?

In all seriousness, I’m okay with not finding out about Jelly shoes until years later. However, I hate not knowing about new releases from my favorite authors.

So, I’ve decided to tackle this problem head-on. I’m creating a newsletter to keep everyone abreast of new lesfic releases. All you have to do is sign up here, and neither of us will be left out again.

If you have favorite authors you want me to approach, please leave a comment below. I’ll bang down their doors if need be. Okay, I won’t. A friend once compared my arms to wet spaghetti noodles flapping in the wind.* And, I’ve seen enough episodes of Wentworth to know I don’t have what it takes to survive prison. But I will attempt to contact the authors or their publishers via email or social media.

Again, if you want to hear about new releases while they’re still new, sign up here.

* In case you’re worried, I am addressing the lack of muscles in my arms. Just the other day, I completed half a pushup.

 

Posted in New Lesfic Releases | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Lesbian Romance Is So Much More … by Jea Hawkins

Jea Hawkins is here today!

She released her latest novel, but first, Jea has something to say.

The first time I was aware of my sexuality as being different than the “norm” was 9th grade. It was the first time I’d looked at another girl and thought, “I would like to kiss her.”

She was my best friend and, no, we never kissed.

I am a very fortunate person – if I had started a relationship with another young woman when I was a teenager, my family wouldn’t have batted an eyelash. To them, being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is not abnormal. It is simply a fact of life.

I also know the flip side exists – that, for some families, being gay is not a fact of life. They abhor the very idea. Now that I am in my forties, I am sorry to say I have encountered many young people whose parents disapprove of their sexual orientation. These people wonder why their parents cannot be more like me: accepting of who they are and not questioning it or treating them like they are criminals.

How is this relevant to writing?

As a Gen Xer, I grew up on the wonderful fantasy and sci-fi of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Andre Norton, Mercedes Lackey, Marian Zimmer Bradley, Anne McCaffrey – they were just some of my favorite authors from my adolescence. I particularly enjoyed stories in which women formed friendships with one another and didn’t “need a man” to be a part of that dynamic.

Of course, I wanted to write the same kind of epic fantasy and science fiction. I wanted to explore new worlds and far-out ideas, with women as the central characters.

Over time, though, I found that while I enjoyed writing those genres, I wasn’t striking the chords intended. Sure, the stories were full of fun and action, but the heartfelt relationships within them weren’t taking center stage.

So I stepped back and rethought my writing. How could I write fiction for women that would be light, fun and uplifting?

Lesbian romance seemed like the answer, so I delved into it with all my heart. Sometimes it felt a little awkward to tell people “I write romance” when they asked what I was working on, but as I received reader feedback, I learned something important. Lesbian romance is so much more than some lines on a digital page that make readers smile. What do I mean by that?

Going back to those younger people I’ve met whose parents disapprove of their “lifestyle,” I realize now that writing light-hearted lesbian romance with happy endings is just one way to normalize how we fall in love.

Do my stories dig deep? It depends on the tale on my mind. Does love hurt? Of course. That’s universal no matter who we love. But when people realize they have a love worth fighting for, do they deserve the happy ending? Absolutely.

The awful trope of lesbians dying due to simply being who they are is atrocious and there is no place for it in our world.

I’m sorry to say there are still many, many people who believe being gay is wrong. In A Vote for Love, I explore that notion a little bit with Veronica, a senator’s daughter. However, many people who disagree with those people also exist and understanding that love is love transcends politics. Sometimes we can be quick to judge someone based on labels – their religion, political party, or something else. The story I hope Hayley and Veronica tell, however, is that actions speak louder than words.

Hayley’s family, for example, is as conservative as Veronica’s father. Midwestern farmers with deep roots in Nebraska, what does this family do when Hayley brings a girlfriend home? They welcome her with open arms, because love isn’t something we can dictate with a religious ideology or political platform. It’s just a part of life.

In the end, both Hayley and Veronica decide to transform their love into action and I think that is what I wanted to tell people: that you can do whatever you set your mind to, as long as you follow your heart.

I was fortunate enough to be able to date whoever I wanted without fear of judgment, to go out into the world with the knowledge that I could love without limitation. Not everyone has that privilege, however.

Gay people deserve so much more than token characters or cautionary tropes in fiction. I want to celebrate lesbian relationships with stories that aren’t driven by angst or pain, but instead by attaining that which my characters seek.

***And now for her new release: A Vote for Love***

What happens when a barista with dreams of becoming a journalist meets a senator’s daughter?

Hayley Becker is a hard-working Midwestern girl who dreams of being a journalist and her goal is within reach. That is, until she falls for glamorous Veronica Stone-McClusky, a senator’s daughter.

As these unlikely opposites attract, Hayley can’t deny the allure of Veronica’s world, a world she soon discovers is at odds with her ambitions. Hayley learns that dreams aren’t always what they seem and sometimes, like it or not, the least likely person is the one you fall in love with.

With career aspirations pulling her one way and her love life pulling her in another direction, Hayley is forced to make a choice or risk losing what she values most.

Amazon US  /  Amazon UK

JEA HAWKINS

Jea Hawkins writes sweet and spicy contemporary lesbian romance. If love conquers all, then she’d like to think her heroines can rule the world one day. An east coast transplant to the Midwest, she loves to write about complicated women and settings that feel like home.

Personal addictions include autumn, cozy sweaters, hot chocolate, and the Sims 3. She’s both an avid reader and gamer, and hopes readers don’t mind a few geeky references here and there in her work.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

 

Posted in Guest Post | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments