Tag Archives: inertia

Exciting news! (and a little bit of pouting)

So I’m going to be sulking just the tiniest bit over the next few days because it seems like the cool kids are all going to play in Albuquerque at GayRomLit 2012, but I got involved in the m/m romance publishing biz too late this year and on too tight a budget to make that happen. SO JEALOUS! I wanna go play! Instead, I’ll be following their tweets avidly and stewing in my sad disappointment.

No, seriously, guys. Have fun and I look forward to hearing the war stories!

In other news, there are some very big things happening in the next few weeks.

The first is that sometime within the next week, Inertia is going to be available in print through Amazon CreateSpace, complete with an all-new cover by BookNibbles. The ebook cover will be updated to match as well. Never fear, I’ll still be keeping Kerry Chin‘s amazing artwork. Only the layout will be different.

And around Halloween, unless catastrophe strikes Kerry, I’ll be doing a cover reveal for Acceleration over at Top2Bottom Reviews, complete with a Halloween-themed snippet from Acceleration itself! So be sure to check back on the 30th for a sneak peak at one of the most entertaining chapters from Acceleration, Impulse Book Two.

Sometime in the near future I’ll also be doing an interview over on the blog of the amazing Brandon Shire, about which I’m very excited. Brandon is a writer to admire, both in the lgbt genre and as a fellow self-published author, and he’ll be sharing an entirely different sneak peak from Acceleration.

If all goes well with the editing process, Acceleration should be released in late November or early December, in both ebook and print format. In early to mid November I hope to release eARC review copies for reviewers who want them in advance.

I was largely quiet through September because I was working on a new project, a manuscript intended to be my first-ever submission to a publisher. I wrote over 65K words in 29 days, which was an incredible accomplishment for me. While of course I hope the manuscript is accepted, even if it’s not, I’m very much looking forward to the learning experience that comes with submitting to a publisher, especially any sort of editorial feedback I might get in the process of the rejection, if it does end up being rejected. I actually take a huge amount of enjoyment in receiving edits and critique, because I’m always looking to improve.

I had intended to work on Velocity, Impulse Book Three for NaNoWriMo in November, but finishing up this manuscript intended for submission ahead of schedule left me with three weeks I hadn’t anticipated having. I’ve decided to use that time to begin working on Book Three so that come November, I have more available time to work on the final edits and release of Book Two. Ideally I would like to have that released in time for the holiday shopping season, though it all depends on how much work is entailed in the editing process. I have a very good feeling about the manuscript, in that I believe it’s well paced, well plotted, and well characterized. My brilliant editor, however, may disagree.

With Inertia I knew there were issues with the manuscript with regard to plotting and characterization, which was why I decided to use my editing budget on a  developmental edit rather than a line edit. And I was absolutely right. The feedback I received in that edit resulted in a complete, from-scratch rewrite of 40-50% of the book. Anyone who has remarked that they loved the characters or felt the pacing and development of the relationship worked? They have Danielle Poiesz to thank for that.

I don’t have that feeling with Acceleration, that feeling that it needs a lot of work to be the book I want it to be. I feel  like it’s an incredibly solid book, probably the most solid I’ve ever written. I can attribute at least some of that to the learning experience I had during the editing process of Inertia. The wonderful P.D. Singer did a pre-edit beta read for me and seemed very positive about it as well, so I think it’s not just me. 😀 As a result, the editing service I’m paying for this time around is a line edit with developmental features instead of a developmental edit. Unless those developmental features end up requiring a lot more revision than anticipated, the editing should go pretty quickly and allow for a timely release.

So! A lot of REALLY EXCITING STUFF coming down the line in the next month or two! Stay tuned!

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Inertia is now available at ARe!

Inertia has now been released at All Romance Ebooks!

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Another Gavin ficlet!

I’ve mentioned this fact on a few author interviews, but most of those never ended up getting posted for some reason. As I indicated in the dedication of Inertia, I have one particular person to thank for the character of Gavin. Gavin is based on an original character a friend of mine created for a roleplay in which we both participated, as Derrick is based on an original character I created. It was her idea to see what would happen to the characters in a modern setting, and from there, the Impulse trilogy was born. I used Gavin with my friend’s full permission and she was holding my hand and cheering me on every step of the way through the creative process.

Someday she may take it upon herself to tell Gavin’s side of the story, but whether or not she does, for now she has decided to share this peek into Gavin’s head as he and Derrick move into the fall season together. I won’t call it fanfic, because she’s not a fan. She’s a co-creator of these characters, and I’m thrilled they still speak to her and urge her to words occasionally.

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Deleted scene from Inertia and more!

Today, they’re hosting me over at Coffee and Porn in the Morning where I’ve shared a deleted scene from Inertia. Also, another giveaway! Check it out!

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Filed under Inertia, News for Released Titles, Other Authors Blogs, Reviews and Features

What if? (What Writing LGBTQ Literature Means to Me)

For the Rainbow Book Reviews Blog Hop

(please see end of post for giveaway details)

As a storyteller, I’ve always been drawn to the “what if?” I know I’m not alone in this. For those of us who tell stories, it’s something our minds naturally do, I think. From the novelist crafting an entire new world from scratch to the fanfiction writer putting the smallest twist on canon and turning it into an intriguing alternate universe, this is what we do.

We ask ourselves, “What if?”

For example:

“What if Kirk and Spock were lovers?”

While same-sex romance has appeared in literature throughout the ages, usually very subtly and in the subtext, I think for many who now write LGBTQ literature, that question is actually where it all began. That question is where most of us got our first exposure to the concept of same-sex pairings in fiction. Even if we never actually read a word of the early Kirk/Spock (or other flavors of) fanfiction that was circulated in print fanzines while the internet was still the pipe-dream of a few pioneers, we all heard of it.

Then along came the internet, and with it instantly accessible, low-to-no-means methods of disseminating non-mainstream fiction to a targeted niche audience. Skinner/Krycek. Clark/Lex. Spike/Xander. Garak/Bashir. Paris/Chakotay. Xena/Gabrielle. Qui-Gon/Obi-Wan. Methos/Duncan. Jim/Blair. Mackay/Sheppard. Harry/Draco. The list is, of course, endless.

I came to the gay fiction late, for a variety of reasons. I am and always have been a writer of erotic fiction, yes, but I didn’t want to simply write a titillating story for the pretty mental image of two men together.

Ultimately, the “what if?” that brought me to writing LGBTQ literature was a very simple one.

What if the doubts and questions and insecurities I explored with any heterosexual character were experienced by a gay character?

It’s a ridiculously easy question, isn’t it? And yet it took me years to come at the thought of writing gay characters from that angle. I was so determined not to fetishize or tokenize LGBTQ characters, or perhaps expose myself to accusations of ignorance regarding issues faced by LGBTQ characters, that I was neglecting them entirely instead. Despite my best intentions, I was still handling these characters as “other” still, unwilling to deal with them at all if it meant the possibility of being accused of mishandling them. And in so doing, I was denying a voice to characters representative of a segment of the populace that is all too often denied a voice.

Once I answered that question, others came much more easily. I discovered a lot more “what if?” in exploring questions of sameness and differentiation between heterosexual and homosexual characters. Given any particular situation or plot element, which aspects would be influenced by the character’s sexuality? Which would remain the same, and which would the character approach from the unique perspective of being closeted, passing, or out-and-proud, the victim of oppression or someone who has triumphed over it?

Writing LGBTQ fiction enabled me to approach the same human questions and truths I always explored with my characters from the perspective of people whose life experiences might give them a completely unique worldview. And at times – even more interestingly, I think – it has allowed me to explore a completely mundane and un-unique worldview. It has allowed me to explore areas of sameness as well as areas of “other”-ness.

Writing LGBTQ fiction means I need to be conscientious. I need to do research rather than make assumptions. I need to check my privilege. I need to handle issues faced by gay and lesbian people with sensitivity and respect, avoid stereotypes while still being honest about real problems faced in the LGBTQ community, and avoid putting a heteronormalizing slant on gay issues and relationships.

And that is just a little of what writing LGBTQ fiction means to me.

*****

In participation with the Rainbow Book Reviews Blog Hop, I will be conducting a giveaway of a copy of my book, Inertia. The winner will receive a 100% off coupon for my book from SmashWords, which will enable them to download it in the format of their choice.

Comment below to be entered into the giveaway, and please be sure to include your email address. Entry cut-off will be  August 27, 2012 at 12 AM. Winner will be selected using The Hat (screencap available upon request) later that same day.

Discussion topic: I’ve shared a little bit about what writing LGBTQ literature means to me. What does it mean to you, as a reader? What do you look for in your LGBTQ lit?

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Coming Friday: Rainbow Book Reviews Blog Hop 2012 and a giveaway!

On Friday, Rainbow Book Reviews will be celebrating the launching of their site with a weekend-long blog hop. In addition to a lot of publisher-sponsored giveaways over at their site, I’ll be giving away a copy of Inertia. Come back Friday to see my thoughts on this year’s theme, What Writing LGBTQ Literature Means To Me, and a chance to win a copy of Inertia!

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Inertia, On Sale Now!

In celebration of completing Acceleration, Impulse Book Two, I have decided to have a little sale and drop the price on Inertia for a short while! The new list price is $2.99, available now at SmashWords, and likely within 12 hours at Amazon! If you’ve been interested in checking out Inertia, now’s the time!

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Filed under Acceleration, Administrative, Announcements, Inertia, News for Released Titles

Saturday Snark–Getting in on the fun!

So, I just learned about a great feature over at Marie Sexton’s blog called Saturday Snark. We are each to share something snarky or witty from our work. So today we get a snippet (naturally) from Derrick and Gavin in Inertia, as Derrick works to fix Gavin’s desk:

He didn’t realize Gavin had returned from checking out the dishwasher until he over-balanced when the foot snapped off the rusted bolt, sending him falling back onto his ass.

Gavin chuckled behind him. “You’re sure you don’t need help?”

“Just what is it you think you can do?” Derrick asked with a soft laugh as a blush inched up his neck. He bit his tongue when it occurred to him the answer might sound dismissive, rather than teasing.

Luckily, Gavin didn’t seem to be in a mood to take offense. “Oh, I don’t know. I’m sure I can contribute something. If only standing here looking pretty.”

“Well, we all have our talents,” Derrick said under his breath.

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Revised Inertia available

Much to my eternal mortification, one of the first reviewers to review Inertia made note of the fact that some editing errors slipped through into the final draft.

I make no excuses. I’m hugely embarrassed that the version which went live still had a number of errors in it. I have since had a fresh pair of eyes go over the story and hopefully the last of these problems have been caught. I have uploaded revised versions to SmashWords and Amazon (the changes on Amazon will take up to 24 hours to go live, possibly 48 for the international Amazon sites.)

I know that anyone who has purchased on SmashWords has the ability to re-download at any time. I believe Amazon customers have the same ability. If not, please feel free to contact me here on Tumblr, at GoodReads, or at ameliacgormley AT gmail DOT com and I will be more than happy to provide you with a corrected version in the file format of your choice.

Thank you.

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Chicks & Dicks Guest Blog Post: Bullying and Coercion

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July 30, 2012 · 11:52 am

Thousand-Word Thursday ficlet

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July 24, 2012 · 1:59 pm

Inertia Chapter One

Chapter One

A flash of red hair in the sweltering late July sunlight startled Derrick as he pulled into his driveway. A smile spread across his face as the woman sitting on his stoop jumped to her feet and waved energetically.

She pulled open the door of his truck as he turned off the engine, squealing with excitement. Behind the fence between the driveway and the back yard, Chelsea barked.

Grinning, Derrick slid out of the driver’s seat and welcomed her with a hug. “What’re you doing here, LeeAnn?” he asked when she bounced back a step and gave him room to move away from the car. “Thought we were meeting at the restaurant at six with Devon and Hannah?”

“I got impatient.” LeeAnn shrugged, tossing her coppery hair with an irrepressible grin. “Better waiting here for you to get home than sitting back at my mom and dad’s place, listening to my mom trot out a hundred different old wives’ tales about how to have a healthy pregnancy.”

Chuckling, Derrick rounded the back of the truck and pulled his toolkit from the bed. “Well, see, with you being out there on the west coast, she probably thinks all the medical advice you’re getting comes from yogis and voodoo witch doctors or something. Figures you need some good old Midwest common sense to balance it all out.”

LeeAnn assumed an expression of offended indignity. “I have a perfectly respectable naturopathic OB, I’ll have you know.” Beneath Chelsea’s furious barking at this near-stranger she hadn’t seen in years, he almost missed when LeeAnn’s eyes twinkled mischievously and she added, “Mom just doesn’t need to know I’ll be having a perfectly outlandish home birth, as well.”

LeeAnn suffered herself to be sniffed by the dog as Derrick opened the gate to the back yard and unlocked the side entrance to the house, dropping his toolkit inside the door before sitting on the sun-warmed concrete step. Shar pei were guard dogs, and though Chelsea was well-trained, Derrick had accepted he’d never quite manage to train her out of barking at least a little when meeting a stranger on her own territory. After a moment, she decided LeeAnn posed no threat and trotted over to greet Derrick.

“So, how is Craig?” he asked as he rubbed Chelsea’s massively wrinkled, fawn-sable head.

LeeAnn beamed. “He’s fine. Thrilled about the baby. He couldn’t make it with me this time, though. He’s got a big project that won’t be done until August, but I really didn’t want to be back in Michigan during the August heat and humidity, and by the time the winter symphony season breaks, I won’t be able to travel, so….” She shrugged. “But I wanted to come back and see you before travel and visiting became a lot more complicated by another person.”

Derrick smiled as he stood, opening the door again to let Chelsea pass. She headed straight for her food dish, accustomed to their routine despite LeeAnn’s presence. LeeAnn followed him, looking around the inside of the red brick house as he fed Chelsea.

“God, this place hasn’t changed a bit,” she breathed, seating herself at the kitchen table. With the easy manner she’d always had, she made herself at home as if they hadn’t seen each other only three times in the last ten years. Despite his customary prickly sense of privacy, Derrick let her. It had been that way since they’d been teenagers. Having her around never felt intrusive as it did with so many others. “I feel like I’m sixteen again, blushing and trying to stammer out an explanation to your grandmother about how we were studying up in your room, when we were actually making out.”

Derrick gave a nonchalant shrug. “Yeah, I guess I haven’t changed much. Haven’t seen the need to.”

“You’ve even kept the appliances. Those were ancient when we were teenagers.”

He pursed his lips, nodding. “Most of ‘em, yeah. Might remodel the kitchen before long, I guess. Having a hard time finding parts to fix them, they’re getting so old.”

LeeAnn slanted a glance at him, her huge brown eyes narrowing. “Have you changed anything? Aside from maybe painting?”

“Why should I?” Derrick asked, still giving her a calm look and ignoring a prickle of irritation at having his choices questioned. He opened the avocado-colored refrigerator and handed her a bottle of water. “Not sure I see the point of changing things just for sake of changing them. I’m self-employed, and I have to pay for my own retirement and health and contractor’s insurance. If I get injured on the job, I could end up unable to work. The fact that this place isn’t mortgaged and that I don’t spend money on things I don’t need gives me a lot of security.”

She looked like she might argue—no doubt something about change being a way to keep things exciting—then stopped herself with a shake of her head. “I swear, Derrick, you’re thirty-one going on seventy-five. You have been since we were in the ninth grade.”

Any other day, he might have shrugged that remark off, unconcerned for how he appeared to others, but today it felt like an indictment.

Was he boring?

“You’ve always known that about me, LeeAnn,” he murmured, digging in the refrigerator for a bottle of beer and twisting off the top. LeeAnn eyeballed it with a touch of envy, but drank her water dutifully. “You didn’t honestly expect that I’d become wild and exciting as I got older?”

“I guess not.” She sighed, sipping her water. “I always loved that about you, actually. You probably kept me from making a lot of bad choices when we were kids, with all your down-to-earth common sense.”

“Then what’s the problem?” he asked mildly, lifting his eyebrows.

“I don’t know.” Her eyes were soft and concerned, and he saw in them the girl he’d once fallen in love with, back when they were fourteen. He’d still been adjusting to the deaths of his parents and the move away from Tennessee and his new life here in Detroit with his grandparents. In those doe-like eyes, he’d discovered someone who would let him be quiet when he needed to be quiet. “I just want to know you’re happy, is all.”

“‘Course I’m happy,” he answered reflexively. “I’ve got a good life, here. Got my business, got a dog who’s smarter than I am, Devon and I play hockey in the winter together, get together for drinks or dinner once in a while. I’m doing okay.”

LeeAnn nodded, apparently accepting his claim even if the agreement didn’t completely reach her eyes. She tilted her head inquisitively and reached across the table, lifting a lock of his hair from where it brushed the tops of his shoulders. “This looks really good on you,” she said admiringly. “Are you seeing anyone?”

“Nah.” Derrick shook his head, brushing the question aside with a shrug, ignoring the put-on-the-spot sensation making his shoulders tense. “Haven’t really felt the need.”

Her silence spoke volumes, and the squirmy feeling got stronger.

“I’m not good at meeting people, LeeAnn. You know that.” He smiled fondly. “You were always my social buffer.”

“Well, hell, if that’s the issue, while I’m here, we can go out to some gay bars, meet some people. I’ll be your wing man.”

Derrick groaned. “God, LeeAnn, don’t even— No. Just, no. I’m fine alone. I like my life the way it is, okay? I don’t need help.”

“It’s been ten years since we broke up, Derrick. In all that time, have you dated anyone?

He shrugged, scratching at a corner of the label on his beer bottle with his thumb nail.

“Well, what about sex?”

His neck began to heat up. He ignored it. “I’ve got a good right hand for a reason.”

“If memory serves, you’ve got two very good hands. Seems a shame someone’s missing out on them,” she teased with a saucy grin. Derrick cursed as the blush spread to his face. He hung his head and laughed softly as she chortled in delight at having gotten a reaction from him. “But seriously, honey. I’m kinda worried about you.”

“Don’t be. I told you, I’m doing okay.”

Her mouth tightened as silence fell. She stared, engrossed in her water bottle for a long moment. “Look, you know I didn’t break up with you because you were gay, right?”

Derrick blinked. “Wow. That was a quite a non-sequitur even for you.”

She waved her hand airily. “Don’t change the subject on my change of subject. You do know, right?”

“Bi, if we have to put a label on it, unless you’ve forgotten that I liked you, too. And yeah, I know.”

She didn’t lift her eyes. “I always was afraid you thought that, with the timing and everything. I broke up with you not six months after I asked you if you liked men and you told me you did.”

“I know,” he repeated in that same mellow, modulated tone, taking another drink of his beer. “It never occurred to me you had. Sure, the timing might have seemed odd, but by the time you broke up with me, we’d been having a long distance relationship for three years. Most of those years I barely had time for phone conversations or emails. You were off at college getting worldly and glamorous and I was— Well, I was back here.”

“Back here burdened with enough responsibility for four people.”

He shrugged. “It was what it was. Over and done.”

“I could have chosen my moment better.”

“Yeah, it’s not like I left you much choice there.” Derrick blew out a breath. “Look, did you really come here to hash over the past, LeeAnn? Because, honestly, I’d rather not. Can we just leave that alone, enjoy hanging out while you’re here?”

LeeAnn frowned, then nodded. “Right, sorry. That had just been weighing on me for a while now. I could never bring myself to say it before. But yeah. Okay. I got that off my chest, so I’m good. We should get going if we’re going to be on time to meet Devon and Hannah.”

“Okay.” Derrick set his empty beer bottle by the sink to rinse and recycle later. Trying to lighten the mood, he flashed her a grin and dug in his pocket, tossing her the keys to his truck. “Good thing about hanging out with a pregnant woman: designated driver by default.”

“I can live with that.” LeeAnn laughed, her mood picking up again with the natural resilience her good humor had always possessed. She sobered, though, just for a moment as they stepped back outside, grabbing Derrick’s arm as he locked the back door.

“Look, I just—” She pursed her lips, thinking. “I’m going to say this, and then I’m going to let it go. If I worry about you, Derrick, it’s because you talk about leaving the past behind, but from where I’ve been sitting all these years, it looks like you’re still living in it. I know with all that happened, your life pretty much stopped when you were eighteen. And I just have to wonder… did it ever start up again?”

She gave him a frank, honest look and lifted herself up on her tiptoes to kiss his cheek, squeezing his arm. Her smile was gentle and encouraging as she turned around and led the way to his truck.

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