Release day for my new book. :-) This is a collection of short stories, some reprints and some new to publication. It’s available now from all good ebook sellers (and you would not believe how long I spent at the weekend tracking down All The Amazons). Full details including all those buy links are on the page for Stormy Nights on the Storm Duffy site, and you can see the cover below. I don’t have an approved-by-publisher excerpt as yet, but will endeavour to provide some snippets over the next few days.
Sex and love, lies and truth, shades in between. Happy endings and might-have-beens. Nine tales of these things between men.
I’ve been experimenting with self-publishing some of my old short stories that have gone out of print. After much angst, I’ve managed to upload “One Size Fits All” to Smashwords, and am awaiting the results from feeding it into the maw of Amazon.
This one’s priced at 99c, but I have also been playing with the coupon code generator on Smashwords. Plug the code RE95K into the appropriate place (ooh er, missus) before Monday, and get 100% off. And all I ask in return is for some feedback on whether the file actually works in your viewing device of choice…
Blurb: Hugh’s everything that Gavin could ask for in a lover. Everything, apart from his taste in underwear. Nothing wrong with the underwear, you understand, but that’s the problem. It’s boring. So Gavin decides to have a rummage through Hugh’s underwear, just in case there’s anything more interesting tucked away. And what he finds is so interesting that he tries it out for size…
The big news in the romance blogosphere yesterday was that Harlequin/Mills&Boon are opening a digital-only press, Carina Press, which will cover a much broader range of genres than the print divisions do. They’ll be publishing more than romance, and in romance they’ll be publishing material that wouldn’t fit into the print lines. While it doesn’t explicitly say so on the website, apparently that will include LGBT, multiracial, and other “non traditional” romances that have already proven popular at the established digital publishers. It will also include things which you might think at first glance would be perfectly traditional Mills & Boon fare, but which don’t actually fit into their existing lines — e.g., if you’ve got a cross-genre, it won’t be necessary to ramp up the romance to make it fit. The other print-related restriction that’s gone is story length — they’ll consider a much wider range of manuscript lengths.
Part of the big news is that they’ve recruited Angela James, former editor-in-chief at Samhain. This is a smart move. Angela has several years of experience at one of the biggest players in the current digital publishing market. This matters, because while Harlequin have been doing well at digitising their print lines, what this represents is a direct move into a different style of digital publishing. Carina Press is digital-only, DRM-free, and following the model of no advance but high royalty rate — the same model that has become a flourishing niche market over the last decade by being able to cater to genres with a readership too small for mass market but large enough to support excellent small press sales.
Will it succeed? Maybe not. But this is Harlequin we’re talking about. They’ve survived in business for a century by giving the market what it wants, and they’ve already got good experience in what it takes on the technical side to put together an ebook and sell it. I want to see their royalty rate and contract[*] before signing on the dotted line, and I want to see them in business long enough to look viable before I risk a full-length manuscript with them, but yes, I’m interested.
[* Harlequin is an actual example of “big publishers screw over their authors too”. They’ve improved over the years, under pressure from the RWA and others, but their contracts have at times been examples of Publishing Evil.]
ETA: apparently I can’t read, in spite having read the guidelines looking for *and* *expecting* *to* *find* a statement that LGBT was welcome. It’s certainly there now. Insufficiently caffeinated this morning, obviously.
It was just an office affair, with wonderful sex. Young scientist Mark Paulson liked older men, especially tall, dark, and very handsome men like his new boss. Self-made millionaire Steven Frost had no trouble finding sex, but what he needed was a friend who shared his interests; someone like the young assistant he’d just hired. What started as simply great sex between friends has become much, much more, and now they’re engaged.
Life’s never that simple, of course. Other people have an interest in Steven’s welfare and Steven’s money, and they’re not about to let the pretty little PA half his age take control of either. There’s a reason why Steven was still single at the age of forty-four, and some of his family are intent on ensuring that Mark finds out about it the hard way.
But Mark already knows — true love is about more than champagne and roses.