Treadmill Week 34 & What I #amreading

Treadmill Goals:

  • Get on the treadmill (or equivalent exercise) daily
  • Pace is fine at 30 min/mile, although I may up it on occasion
  • Time range between 30 minutes and 1 hour per day
  • Distance 1-2 miles per day
  • Read the chosen book, which I won’t allow myself to read outside of my treadmill time, hopefully motivating me to reach or exceed the above goals (the only exception to this is Saturday nights, if I want to finish off a book so I can start a fresh one for the new week)

Note: Although I will try to avoid them, my daily #amreading updates may or may not contain spoilers, so read at your own risk.

What I #amreading (rereading): The Peacock Prince by John Tristan ♡

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My favorite lines this week:

  • SUNDAY – NOTE: (not a book quote) I totally flaunted my own rules and watched the Game of Thrones season opener instead of reading. Even though I love this book I’ve chosen to reread this week, I’m not even going to pretend to be sorry. And look at the bonus time I spent on the treadmill because of it!
  • MONDAY – A braid thick as a ship’s rope was thrown over his shoulder, shining like obsidian under the lamplight. His skin was a dark bronze, made darker by his stubble. When he saw me, he showed a smile, but his black eyes were sharp as a dagger and unreadable.
  • TUESDAY – Lady Iris opened and closed her mouth like a half-gutted fish. I still held his eyes, Barbarian he might be, I thought, but at least he was honest. Perhaps my sister might grow to like him after all.
  • WEDNESDAY – I thought I understood then what Dagon Blackstone meant about honors and titles. Here I was, the prince of Aël, and I could not even command a door to open.
  • THURSDAY – “If you need to throw up, don’t do it on the Blackstone’s floor.” Jerah said. He thrust forth the bowl that had previously held my breakfast. “Use this, or run out and heave over the railing.”
  • FRIDAY – Wearing as little as he did, I cold see his tattoos outlined clearly in the sunlight. On his breastbone bloomed a sleek black octopus; it was its tentacles, elaborated into bizarre geometric shapes, that formed the patterns across his shoulders and arms. By the time they reached toward his wrists, the lines barely seemed to relate to their octopi origin—still, they had a kind of wild, jagged beauty, the beauty of swords and cliff’s edges.
  • SATURDAY – For a long moment, nobody spoke. Above us, in the rafters of the temple, a bird squabbled for a moment with its mate and winged off through the greenery. I could feel my heart beating in my lips, in the tips of my ears. I counted the silent seconds with my pulse as metronome—five, ten, fifteen.

Week 34: July 16, 2017 – July 22, 2017

DAY PACE TIME DISTANCE
Sunday  30 min/mile  69.22 min:sec  2.3 miles
Monday  30 min/mile  33:48 min:sec  1.1 miles
Tuesday  30 min/mile  34:25 min:sec  1.1 miles
Wednesday  30 min/mile  32:22 min:sec  1 mile
Thursday  30 min/mile  30:07 min:sec  1 mile
Friday  30 min/mile  31:33 min:sec  1 mile
Saturday  30 min/mile  30:37 min:sec  1 mile

#RainbowSnippets July 22, 2017 – To Love and To Cherish (Vows Box Set)

I’ve joined the Rainbow Snippets group on Facebook. From their description: “Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).” Pretty cool, eh? Don’t forget to “Like” my Facebook page and/or my Facebook profile while you’re over there checking out this fantastic group!

Rainbow

In honor of the release of the Vows Series Box Set, I’m going with another snippet from To Love and To Cherish (the final story in the set). The box set is up exclusively at Amazon.

This snippet follows immediately after where I left off last week. Nash has come home to face his roommates (Harley and Oliver), and he’s scrabbling to find a way to tell them about the arrangement he’s just made with Emmitt (a marriage of convenience). He’s afraid of what their reaction might be so he’s trying to head that off by redirecting the conversation to their own relationship.

Last week ended with:

Harley pointed a finger at [Oliver]. “Don’t put this all on me. You’re just as capable of asking as I am.”

This is told from Nash’s 3rd-person POV (although Harley and Oliver are the only players in this scene):

“Oliver had the decency to blush. “Okay, I guess that’s a fair point, but you’re the one still insisting we keep waiting.”

“Don’t put words in my mouth.”

“What? That’s pretty much what you just said.”

“I was explaining why we hadn’t, not insisting that we shouldn’t.”

Oliver pinched his lips and placed his hands on his hips. “So?”

“So what?” Harley asked.

“Do you want to get married?”


Promo 400x600

Click here for more information on the stories included in this collection.

The Vows Series Box Set will be exclusively in the Amazon Select program for 90 days. On October 14, 2017 it will become available at all the usual distributors.

Here’s the Kindle universal link: myBook.to/Vows_AA

#RainbowSnippets

 


Rainbow Snippets

#FlashFictionFriday – Cultivating Love – Alt. Universe 1 Part 4

Flash Fiction Friday

Today’s Flash Fiction Friday scene uses the words left in last week’s post: bestwriterever. 😁

This is a continuation of Alternate Universe #1. You can find the first three installments here (1) and here (2) and here (3).

NOTE: The action in this scene takes place prior to the published story.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The action in this scene is NOT consistent with the published story, and CANNOT be considered a true prequel. If this scene had happened, the book would be entirely different. The action in this scene is also unrelated to that other “What if?” scene I posted on June 30 (alternate universe #2).

Told from Ed’s 3rd-person POV:

Ed stutter stepped, but Joe grabbed his arm, stopping him from falling into a klutzy heap in the middle of the diner. That would hardly have been the best first impression. The wide-eyed look on Fred’s face—a face that made him feel as if he were looking into some magical funhouse mirror that could show him his future—was disconcerting. Not at all what he’d expected out of some distant (or maybe not so distant?) cousin.

It was unsettling because Fred looked almost overwhelmed by Ed’s presence, but not in any kind of negative way because he’d had his lunch interrupted. More like he’d been waiting his whole life to meet Ed. Weird.

Ed continued forward. “Hi. I’m Ed Jamison, and this is…” He gestured toward Joe. Should he risk losing his chance to gain some information about his dad’s family in case this guy was homophobic? He cleared his throat. Fuck it. The grocery store woman had obviously wasted no time calling Fred and had probably told him about that kiss anyway. “This is my boyfriend, Joe Durham.”

Fred’s jaw dropped, so maybe the woman hadn’t tipped him off after all. “Your…” That was all he said before his head spun to stare at the other man still seated at the table. If Merriam-Webster ever wanted a picture to put next to the expression “what the fuck?” in their dictionary, they could snap a photo of that fella’s face.

The guy at the table sat back and tilted his head to gaze at Ed as if trying to figure something out. He found his voice before Fred did. “You didn’t write that goddamned letter, did you?” The words were murmured as if he was absently speaking his thoughts rather than addressing Ed.

“What letter?” Ed turned back to Fred. His lookalike’s expression had morphed from stunned to…heartbroken? Ed shrugged. “I’m not much of a letter writer. The occasional text message, maybe.”

Oh, look. I’ve run out of prompt words. Darn.

Leave as many prompt words as you like in the comments, but I’ll only promise to use one from each contributor in next week’s post (although I’ll try to use them all).

Blurb

Cultivating_Love_400

A man of few words, Joe is a hard-working farmhand who likes his simple, uncomplicated life. Ed is satisfied with his existence as an auto mechanic, but thrilled when an unexpected development in his life allows him to help Joe realize a dream.

It forces them, however, to reevaluate the casual, undefined nature of their relationship. They’re too macho to speak of love, and neither would acknowledge he doesn’t really mind when it’s his turn to bottom. When life throws them a curve ball, and the rules of their game get old, Ed tries to take every aspect of their relationship up a notch. Can Joe adapt to the open sentimentality Ed’s injecting into their relationship, let alone the new spice in their bedroom activities?

This is a previously published story that has been rewritten, expanded, and re-edited.


Kindle Unlimited

As with all my books at JMS Books, LLC, Cultivating Love is available for #FREE download with your #KindleUnlimited subscription (as well as available in other formats at all the usual distributors).

Buy Links

eBooks

JMS Books | Amazon Kindle (Unlimited) Universal Link |iBookstore

Barnes and Noble/NookKobo | Google Play | BAM!—Books-a-Million

Print

JMS Books | Amazon Universal Link | Barnes and Noble

Flash Fiction Friday

#GayRomLit – My Schedule, Etc.

GRL Retreat 2017 Badge Featured Author

My schedule so far leading up to GRL as well as at the event is:

Before GRL

At GRL

  • Wed. Oct. 18, 2017 @ 3:00 p.m. — Newbie Orientation — I’m going to try very hard to arrive in time to attend this (I wanna get one of those GRL virgin cherry stickers! 😉).
  • Thurs., Oct. 19, 2017 @ 12:30 p.m. – 12:45 p.m. — Spotlight: Author Reading (I haven’t decided what I’ll read yet.)
  • Thurs., Oct. 19, 2017 @ 3:00 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. — Author Lounge at Evergreen Foyer
  • Fri., Oct. 20, 2017 @ 10:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. — Author Lounge at Evergreen Foyer

My understanding is that the author lounge time is when I’ll be available for signing books and handing out swag. Speaking of swag, I need to get busy ordering that kind of stuff!

I managed to secure a spot on the Indie Pub Authors’ table where I’ll have books for sale throughout the retreat. Apparently, unless an author’s publisher(s) has a sale table or they’ve secured a coveted spot on the indie table, they can only sell books during their Author Lounge times.

My current GRL-related to-do list includes:

  • Sign up for the special event sales tax, so I’ll be able to sell books at the event.
  • Have someone with more skills than me design what’ll go on my swag.
  • Order swag.
  • Book flight or reserve a rental car (9 hour drive) (hotel was done when I signed up for GRL so I got a room in the reserved block).

If I’m missing anything critical (I’m a total newbie) or you have any suggestions, please leave your suggestions!

These are the paperbacks I’ll have with me to sell/sign at the event (you can preorder using the link, above, so you don’t risk missing out!):

GRL Books 2

Completely #FREE – Monday, July 17 ONLY – Vows Box Set

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Today only, exclusively on Amazon Kindle, you can get the Vows Box set completely for FREE!

myBook.to/Vows_AA

The set includes 2 novels, 1 novelette, and 1 short story.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity! I recommend grabbing the download even if you’ve already purchased all the longer stories individually. Why? (1) The short story, Okay,  Then, has only been available until now in my Snapshots collection (or the first edition in the Love Is Proud charity anthology), so there’s a good chance you’ve missed it. (2) The box set corrects a couple typos and a minor timeline discrepancy between the two novels. (3) I would greatly appreciate the boost your download will bring to the book’s rank on Amazon, since a large part of the point of a freebie is to jump it into a sweet spot where it’ll be more visible to paying customers in the following days/weeks.

Here’s the Kindle Universal Link: myBook.to/Vows_AA

This special deal is only good today (Monday, July 17, 2017). Amazon runs on Pacific (currently daylight-savings) time (UTC-7). Start and end times are “approximately” midnight to midnight. This post is scheduled to coincide with the expected deal time.

Vows Box Set

Join Henry and Sam and an appealing supporting cast as they ride a rollercoaster of emotions when their lives are derailed before coming back on track, leaving Nash as collateral damage in the novel, Til Death Do Us Part, novelette From This Day Forward, and short story, Okay, Then. Nash takes an unusual path to his own HEA in To Love and To Cherish.

Contains the stories…

‘Til Death Do Us Part: Henry and Sam Miller-Greene are living the dream, but their worlds are shattered when Henry’s plane crashes and he’s presumed dead. But Henry survives undetected on a remote, small, and insignificant island. Will Sam and Henry’s love be able to survive, as well? When Henry and Sam face an accidental estrangement, and Henry is assumed dead, can their love endure the trials of one’s fight for survival, and the other’s new love interest? When Henry is rescued, will Sam be able to put aside his new love when he reunites with Henry?

From This Day Forward: Henry and Sam are enjoying life after Henry’s rescue. With their nightmare separation behind them, Henry and Sam are anxious to renew both the intensity of their former intimacies — now hampered by having a curious and still apprehensive child sharing their home — and their commitment to one another. Will they be able to move their love forward now that they are together again?

Okay, Then: Sam and Henry’s first date/encounter is mentioned in flashback in ‘Til Death Do Us Part, but this short story fleshes it out. Relive the moment they first connect while on a research trip in Honiara in the Solomon Islands.

To Love and To Cherish: Jilted by his fiancé Sam just weeks before their wedding, Nash Marino’s outlook on life in general, and love in particular, is jaded. Will Nash find love again? Of course he will. Will he go about it in the usual way? Now that’s another story entirely. When Nash’s marriage of convenience scheme is muddied by notions of love after a memory reboot, will their plans go awry, or will Nash’s new outlook on life be just what the doctor ordered?

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Treadmill Week 33 & What I #amreading

Treadmill Goals:

  • Get on the treadmill (or equivalent exercise) daily
  • Pace is fine at 30 min/mile, although I may up it on occasion
  • Time range between 30 minutes and 1 hour per day
  • Distance 1-2 miles per day
  • Read the chosen book, which I won’t allow myself to read outside of my treadmill time, hopefully motivating me to reach or exceed the above goals (the only exception to this is Saturday nights, if I want to finish off a book so I can start a fresh one for the new week)

Note: Although I will try to avoid them, my daily #amreading updates may or may not contain spoilers, so read at your own risk.

What I #amreading: Details of the Hunt by Laura Baumbach ♡

It’s another reread. I think I’m going to stick with rereads in general for my treadmill books, because it’s often torturous having to put the book aside after just a teasing bit each day. At least with rereads I know what’s going to happen, even though I enjoy re-experiencing it.

51vAqJbdcILMy favorite lines this week:

  • SUNDAY – Maymon peered over the edge of the schooner’s aft and studied the swirling waters twenty feet below. The rising wind tossed his long hair in the air until it danced around his head like a wreath of sea serpents hell-bent on taking flight.
  • MONDAY – Barlow seemed to shrink back without really moving. Talos briefly considered holding negotiations in the nude all the time. The intimidation factor seemed to work wonders.
  • TUESDAY – Aidan Maymon didn’t have the slightest idea of where he was or where he was going, so getting lost was impossible.
  • WEDNESDAY – “Might be able to make a bit of a trade, if you were in a mind for it. Say, my freedom in exchange for…well, let’s call it a private boarding party, eh? What say you to that, guv?”
  • THURSDAY – “What is it with you humans? No one else around this galaxy’s allowed to have a heart? And if they do, they have to wear it on their sleeve? Wise up. Scientists proved a long time ago Earth wasn’t the center of the universe. Humans just still think it is.”
  • FRIDAY – Smelled better, too. Like the first sunny day after the hurricane season blew through the islands, rich, warm, clean and full of the promise of hidden adventures yet to come.
  • SATURDAY – “Hang on there, you bug-eyed pus bucket of a pox-ridden snake.” Maymon struggled against Barlow’s surprisingly strong grip, attempting to go to her aid.

Week 33: July 9, 2017 – July 15, 2017

DAY PACE TIME DISTANCE
Sunday  30 min/mile  31:15 min:sec  1 mile
Monday  30 min/mile  34:19 min:sec  1.1 miles
Tuesday  30 min/mile  34:22 min:sec  1.1 miles
Wednesday  30 min/mile  40:15 min:sec  1.3 miles
Thursday  30 min/mile  33:30 min:sec  1.1 miles
Friday  30 min/mile  48:25 min:sec  1.6 miles
Saturday  30 min/mile  30:16 min:sec  1 mile

#RainbowSnippets – July 14, 2017 – To Love and To Cherish (Vows Box Set)

I’ve joined the Rainbow Snippets group on Facebook. From their description: “Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).” Pretty cool, eh? Don’t forget to “Like” my Facebook page and/or my Facebook profile while you’re over there checking out this fantastic group!

Rainbow

In honor of the release of the Vows Series Box Set, I’m going with another snippet from To Love and To Cherish (the final story in the set). The box set is up exclusively at Amazon. With the collection (2 novels, a novelette, and a short story) coming in at over 147,000 words, it’s a steal at only $6.99! (PSSSST…Watch for a very special Kindle Select deal for this collection on Monday, July 17th)

This snippet is unrelated to last week’s racy excerpt (continuing would have been a tad bit too steamy for a blog post). It picks up just a little later in the story when Nash comes home to face his roommates (Harley and Oliver), and he’s scrabbling to find a way to tell them about the arrangement he’s just made with Emmitt (a marriage of convenience). He’s afraid of what their reaction might be so he’s trying to head that off. This is told from Nash’s 3rd-person POV:

“I had this whole conversation with Angela the other day,” Nash said. “About how quickly we’d known in our hearts that a relationship ultimately wouldn’t work, but stuck it out anyway because we’d hope things would work out. But when we’d met someone who was a great match for us, we’d known that just as fast. Admit it, you know right now that you’re going to marry Oliver in the end. You’re just holding out for bullshit reasons.”

“I don’t know that I’d call them bullshit reasons,” Harley blustered.

“What would you call them?” Oliver asked.

Harley pointed a finger at him. “Don’t put this all on me. You’re just as capable of asking as I am.”


Promo #2 1200 x 628


Click here for more information on the stories included in this collection.

The Vows Series Box Set will be exclusively in the Amazon Select program for 90 days. Afterward it will become available at all the usual distributors.

Here’s the universal link: myBook.to/Vows_AA, but remember…Watch for a very special Kindle Select deal for this collection on Monday, July 17th!

#RainbowSnippets

Rainbow Snippets