Monday, August 22, 2011

Contest Whoohoo!

I recently asked author Cathy Pegau if she'd be willing to do an interview and she was gracious enough to answer my questions. Cathy has just had a book, Rulebreaker, published and I loved it. Because I enjoyed it so much, I'm giving away 2 Kindle copies of Rulebreaker woot!

I hope you enjoy the interview : )

First, congratulations on your first published book! Did you know this day would come? Or did you fear it would take a lot more time? How many stories do you think you’ve completely written to get to this point?

Thanks so much! When I first started writing, I had delusions of grandeur and a five year plan that took a dozen to come to pass. With Rulebreaker being such a niche book, I was quite surprised it didn’t take longer to find a home. I was fully prepared to have it make the rounds then get stuffed in my virtual drawer.

I know EXACTLY how many stories I’ve written. Four full novels and three halves of novels. Plus dozens of pages of storylines for future novels.

You created an interesting character in Liv. She’s fairly complex in that she lives outside the law, and yet, she seems to have an inner code of honor. Was there someone in particular you based her off of?

You’re not the first person to ask me that : ) Liv is, I think, the Bad Girl (which, not so incidentally, was the original title for Rulebreaker) many of us have inside. Not evil, just willing to do certain things, mostly for cash, when normal means of acquisition are difficult. I didn’t have a particular person in mind, no, but reading about a couple of famous/infamous females helped shape her.

This blog is focused on promoting f/f stories. So I’d love to ask a few questions in that direction.

I know you love reading Sci-fi, so it’s a no brainer that you’d write a story in that genre. But what was it that made you decide the main love story would be between two women?

Did you find it more difficult to create a love story and write sex scenes between two women more so than writing a m/f story?

As much as I enjoy f/f, I didn’t consciously set out to write about two women. I knew it would take a very special person to cause Liv to break her personal rules. Almost immediately, Zia’s character popped into my head. I was a bit startled, but it felt right. The love story was organic enough that writing it came about relatively easily. I wasn’t trying to hook up two women merely for titillating girl-on-girl action. I actually found it easier to write the more sensual and emotional aspects of their relationship than when I write m/f. The physical scenes were new to me, but I don’t write graphic love scenes, even in my m/f stories, so a little extra reading and research worked to manage that. The hardest part was keeping the pronouns straight : )

In m/f the masculine/feminine dynamic makes for a great contrast/ conflict between two characters in a love story automatically. There’s so much to play with even if the male is a beta and the female is an alpha.

Both women, Liv and Zia, are strong alpha types in their own right. I noticed that Liv is more feminine around Tonio but more commanding with Zia, while Zia, who is definitely an alpha in her work, becomes rather soft and vulnerable when it comes to Liv.

Did you think when writing these women that you needed that contrast/conflict to make it interesting and not have two women who are too similar, or did it just want to happen that way?

I wanted two strong women, each with her own life, career, ideas and problems, but they still had to be individuals. Liv had been Tonio’s equal, but yes, in some ways she was willing to defer to him. When she felt like it, anyway : ) When she goes to work at Exeter Mining Liv has to take the reins in order to get her job done, so it suits her to be more forward with Zia. She plays the good little coffee girl in the office, but uses that to her advantage. Zia, on the other hand, is the cool, aloof exec when it comes to her job, but her personal life allows her softer side to come through. I actually wrote a character exploration scene with Zia and her former lover to get a stronger sense of her vulnerability.

I was quite amazed when you shared that your book had been picked up. This is because f/f still isn’t that popular, or nowhere near as popular as m/m in GLBT. While I do feel that more authors are writing it and more readers are open to reading it, I know publishers are still not as willing to go for publishing it.

The f/f market is way smaller than m/m, but hopefully it’s growing. There are some amazing authors and publishers out there. Carina Press is one of the larger publishing imprints to take f/f, making it more mainstream. Rulebreaker isn’t the only f/f story they offered this summer. Michael Merriam’s Last Car to Anwnn Station is a great fantasy with a f/f relationship. I think most people equate f/f and m/m with erotica, no matter what the heat level, and that may put them off. We’d find more readers if that assumption wasn’t made, which means more word of mouth about what’s available. Fingers crossed that f/f will get more exposure in the near future.

Did you fear that having a love story between two women would mean that your book would be passed up or that you’d be told to change it to a m/f?

As I wrote Rulebreaker, I honestly wasn’t thinking about the marketability. I just wanted to write an interesting story. I think if I had stopped to consider the market I might have put it away. But maybe not. I was having way too much fun with it. After writing and revising, as I researched the market, yeah, I was worried it was going to be passed up. I was told by more than one person the writing was fine but selling the story would be hard. No one suggested changing it to m/f. Which is good, because I wouldn’t have : )

I loved this story and think you have a great writing voice. Are there any plans for writing another f/f in your future?

Aw, thanks! There is definitely more f/f in my future! I’m working on the third book set in the same ‘verse as Rulebreaker (number two is a m/f). I also have a f/f historical paranormal western that’s been circling my brain for some time. That’s it at the moment, but I’m always coming up with something to distract me from what I should be doing : )

Thanks a bunch for having me here! I appreciate your support and enthusiasm on a personal level as well as for the f/f genre!

Just comment to enter to win a copy of Rulebreaker. I'm keeping the contest open until Sun. Aug. 28th. The winners will be announced at 6 PM PST on Sun.

If you don't have a Kindle, you can download the Kindle for PC or the apps for iTouch, iPad, iPhone. You can also read Kindle books on android phones and tablets as well.

Good luck!

Edited: All three commentors won a copy of Rulebreaker. Congrats! See comments section for info.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Review- The Sublime and Spirited Voyage of Original Sin by Colette Moody

The Sublime and Spirited Voyage of Original Sin
By Colette Moody
March 2009
Historical/ Lesbian
204 pgs.
Pub: Bold Strokes Books

Buy it Amazon, B&N, ARe

The Gulf of Mexico, 1702: When pirates of the square-rigger Original Sin steal ashore to abduct a doctor to tend to their wounded, they end up settling for the doctor’s attractive fiancée—Celia Pierce, the town seamstress.

Together with Gayle Malvern, daughter of wounded pirate captain “Madman” Malvern, Celia becomes a reluctant participant in an unexpectedly thrilling journey through the Caribbean. For Gayle, Celia’s presence is at first a welcome and shapely distraction, but as her attraction to the seamstress deepens, she realizes that Celia comes to mean more to her than is almost certainly prudent. As Celia and Gayle navigate the perilous territories of gypsies, prostitutes, mercenaries, and slave-traders, they forge a partnership born of necessity that Gayle soon hopes will veer away from insurmountable danger—and instead detour directly to her bed.

This was such fun book to read! It seems really that most lesbian romances are contemporaries, so to read a story set in the 1700’s wherein the characters aren’t the typical of that time as well was a definite treat.

What I liked: Both of the main characters, Gayle and Celia are adventurous and strong. While Gayle has grown up on her father’s pirate ship and is used to the life of being a pirate, she’s tough enough to step up to the plate and has a good head on her shoulders for leading her crew and doing what’s best for the ship.

Gayle also has no compunction about killing other pirates from other ships who are evil incarnate and she’s quite aggressive about going after what’s hers. And while she won’t do nefarious things that other pirates are doing like slave trading, she sort of accepts that these things go on and will do what she can to stop it if it’s something that’s been requested of her. So she’s a juicy mix of heart and ruthlessness, which made her a much more compelling character than the usual.

Celia is an interesting character in that while she’s grown up as the daughter of a well to do man living a comfortable life in Florida, instead of craving a life of having continued creature comforts, she’s so open to any new adventure. In fact, she ponders how dull life will be with her betrothed, a doctor who doesn’t even get her subtle sarcasm about how less than thrilled she is to be with him.

After getting whisked away (kidnapped essentially) by Gayle and crew in need of a doctor, she’s intrigued and turned on by this unique, dynamic woman who’s the captain of a pirate ship and whose romantic preference is for women.

Celia also has no qualms about jumping when needed to fight for the ship and their lives even if she’s less inclined to get into scuffles if she doesn’t need to.

I thought their romance was a bit subdued, but their romantic and sexual dance was sexy and playful. They came across as a couple who definitely complement each other as well as enjoy the hell out of each other, both being game for anything.

The odd assortment of other characters: pirates, port shop keepers, family members are wild and colorful and added so much to this story. I also thought this pirate world, the ship, the towns, and situations were very descriptive and gave me vivid idea of what this world looked like.

What I didn’t like: there wasn’t much I disliked about this book at all. But one thing bothered me throughout the book and that was the constant reference to potential rape by gross, filthy, disgusting, violent men. Of course that was a reality. And I can imagine that the rare women who managed to be on a pirate ship would be a constant target of sex starved men. But still, it was brought up constantly and from many different situations. I kept imagining the worst case scenario even if it never happened. Even the thought of those women who were prostitutes willingly having sex with those men made me gag a bit. So for some reason my mind got distracted with that often while reading this book.

The Sublime and Spirited Voyage of Original Sin is a great read none the less and for the unique setting in lesbian it’s definitely worth reading. There’s tons of action, it moves quickly and there’s never a dull moment. Even when the women are getting to know each other, there’s always some excitement in the air.

Heat level: 3-4 some sexual situations not too graphically written but still spelled out. Heh

Grade: B+

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Interesting Statistics

I got this from the GLBT promo blog-

The big shocker on this? I had no idea there were so many GLBT persons in the Midwest. Wisconsin? Indiana? Illinois?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


A new anthology is coming out soon from authors Paisley Smith and Deliliah Devlin.

Pre-order for a discount at Amazon . It's in trade PB! Great for those who like to read paper.

Pop on over to Girls Who Bite to enter a contest to win Paisley Smith's Beguiled or Soft Swap