As I read more and more m/m books I'm becoming more intrigued by the storylines. Today is a truly unique story mixing a variety of paranormal elements. Cutter Phoenix is here today talking about her new novella, Marked by Rowan, as well as about writing in the m/m genre. There's also a giveaway to sign up for, so let's welcome author Cutter Phoenix to the site......
Not long ago, a couple of fellow authors who write strictly heterosexual erotic romance asked me how I can write m/m without getting confused and overusing the men’s names.
It’s not easy. Even the most seasoned m/m writer has to go back and double check and even triple check to make sure the action is pointing at the right subject, name or pronoun and it’s clear which is which. And don’t even get me started on m/m menage! I have a tough enough time keeping up with which character is which when it’s two men let alone three, four or more.
When the m/m romance genre really jumped onto the cyber shelves, I was the managing editor at Freya’s Bower. I took on a few m/m writers as my authors and learned a lot working with them. Eventually, this led to me writing some m/m romance as well.
Most of the m/m that I write is “sweet” or to sensual. Sure, I pen some explicit romance, but I find those scenes do my head in because intense concentration is needed to keep things straight like I mentioned above. My m/m fiction focuses on plot more than the sex. There are many ups and downs—LMAO!—to write m/m romance. But as for the ones that are call-the-fire-department hot, here’s a quick step-by-step approach to how I write and revise sex scenes—and don’t laugh! (grins)
Tap, tap, tap, tap...this goes on for several minutes and then I pause to read over what I just typed. I raise an eyebrow and groan. “Oh, for crying out loud. Whose pecker is whose in this sentence? Sheesh!” I highlight and delete one part of the sentence and rewrite it. “There. Tom’s the one doing the action to John.” I frown. “Oh, wait. This pronoun could be misunderstood to be the wrong person.”
Highlight and delete. Tap, tap, tap....
So I write another page or so and do the whole process all over again.
“Oh, for Pet’s sake! There are too many Tom and John usages in this paragraph.” I rewrite a few areas. Then I revise a sentence because too many pronouns make it physically impossible to do what the characters are doing... I utter a few choice words under my breath.
Yeah, it can be a li’l vexing, but the more a writer pens m/m fiction the more he or she gets the hang of it. If you’re an author and have thought about writing some m/m romance, make sure you take the time to learn the dos and don’ts. Publishers of m/m, especially if they publish only GBLT, are very picky, so don’t approach one with a gay or lesbian romance manuscript until you’ve done your homework on the genre. Just like any other genre, reading the work of well-established m/m authors helps a lot, too. Freya’s Bower has some great m/m romances and m/m erotica, such as my novella Marked By Rowan.
Yes, lol, my title’s good. (offers a wicked smile) I’ve done my homework.
Check out Marked By Rowan, a contemporary paranormal fantasy that’s highly erotic. It involves both some het and m/m and it’s set in a fey world that makes the Bogey Man look like the Easter Bunny. Oh, and watch Freya’s Bower for my upcoming m/m romance for the holidays. It’s vampire-licious and called Fangs for Christmas.
Plagued by erotic dreams and frightening images of people in the throes of ecstasy, Justin questions his sexuality and his sanity. When he is menaced by a vagrant, Justin is saved by Rowan, a strange yet attractive man who seems to be able to read his mind and sense his most intimate desires. However, once Rowan invites him to dinner, Justin's life takes a turn for the bizarre mixed with so much sex and eroticism he can barely cope with it--but oh how he tries!
Troubled by his longing for both men and women, Justin finds himself seduced by Rowan. However, his new and unexpected lover possesses powers which force Justin into a realm where few mortals have traveled and even less have returned.
Toward the end of the book:
“Hey, mort. Wake up.”
Patting on Justin’s cheek brought him up out of the inkiness to the amber light filling the huge bedchamber. He focused on the figure looming over him. Gradually, the blond, fuzzy face belonging to Tomalonis cleared and solidified.
“What,” croaked Justin, “do you want?”
“It’s time for me to escort you home.” The giant straightened, his expression turned from disgust to curiosity, and finally, pity. “What did the Master do to you?”
“The master?” Justin struggled to sit up. A piercing pain shot through the muscles on both sides of his neck. “Argh!” He froze. “What the fuck?”
“Shit three times and kill a pig,” Tomalonis said. He crossed his arms over his broad chest. “Did he take you?”
“Uh…” Frowning, Justin struggled to remember. Shame and regret hit him with such force he swayed slightly. “No, no, no…”
“Poor mort.” Grabbing him by the upper arms, the giant hefted him to his feet. “You would have been better off to let the Glaistig seduce you or even one of the vampyr, but not The Red-Haired Man.”
Soreness in his ass made itself known. “Fuck me!” Justin cried as his body shifted into a standing position.
“No thanks,” said Tomalonis, “I think you’ve been fucked enough.”
“What have I done?” Justin whispered. “Why didn’t I—?”
Tomalonis shook him gently. Slowly, Justin looked up at the Jack-In-Irons. “You,” said the giant, “couldn’t have said no to the Master no matter how hard you might have tried.”
Justin recalled the thoughts and images as he’d warred within himself and struggled to regain control over his body. Yes, the big faerie was right.
“He’s one of the fallen ones,” Tomalonis continued, “magical, beautiful, powerful, and he always gets what he wants, especially if it’s a mort.”
“Then how do any of you live with him?”
The giant’s furry yellow eyebrows rose to form a solid upside-down U. “Each member of the fallen has his or her own powers whether good or bad. Where the Master is evil, there are those who are good, and where he possesses good, there are those who are evil. It’s all about balance in both your world and ours. We fell from Grace, but we’re still united and intertwined.”
“And fucking nuts.”
A rumble started in the giant’s chest and exited his mouth as thunderous laughter. “That, too.”
MY IMPRESSIONS OF THE STORY:
This story is like a piece of chocolate, you never know what you're going to get. You expect it to be an erotic m/m story but it then evolves into a paranormal story with bits of erotic fairy tales thrown in. To fully enjoy this story it's best to treat it like a dream, a story giving you an afternoon of delight. And just when you're completely sucked in the story ends leaving character's lives on the line in a story that's really just begun.
The characters and paranormal world Justin ends up in after a hard day at work is colorful and larger than life. It's a place where you can indulge all your sexual fantasies, and against his better judgements and beliefs Justin ends up the plaything of a powerful red-haired entity, Rowan, who's a cross between a vampire, a fairy, and the devil. Whatever he is, he's definitely sexy and the power he exudes is enthralling. Their sexual encounter is hot with a bit of kink to show how powerless Justin is in that paranormal world. Justin clearly didn't stand a chance and now his life and freedom is in danger after being bonded unexpectedly to Rowan.
To save himself he's supposed to hand over a powerful being who's unbeknownst to him. Little clues tip the reader off as the story progresses and it's frustrating how long it takes for Justin to figure out the being's identity. Once he does though, they're on the run with help from an unexpected ally which leads to one heckuva cliffhanger.
This novella sets up a larger storyline in a compelling way. Things weren't always clear but they kept you intrigued. Many of the scenes are frantic but enthralling and I look forward to any upcoming visits to this steamy world.
My rating for this is a C+
*I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
An author of dark, erotic romance, Cutter Phoenix writes heterosexual and m/m romances and occasionally erotica. Readers will discover that Cutter enjoys penning different subgenres of romance, but whether the story is paranormal or contemporary, each book is laced with dark, romantic themes and layered with noir humor. Cutter also writes as Azura Ice and F.L. Bicknell.
Besides writing, Cutter enjoys the solitude of early mornings, paints, and reads just about anything.
Fans can reach Cutter here by posting a comment anywhere on http://cutterphoenix.
wordpress.com or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cutter and Freya's Bower will be awarding a $10.00 Freya's Bower Publishing Gift Certificate to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.
-To be entered, leave a comment, along with your email addy.
-A winner will be chosen randomly from all comments made throughout the tour, so the more you comment the greater your chances of winning. A list of all participating blogs can be found here.
-Giveaway ends at 11:59 PM CST on 12/14.