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04.14.2014

The Truth and a Lot of Ot…

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Whenever someone comments on a book I’ve written or read, and comments on how this or that didn’t meet their expectations, I wonder whether they realize the books are rarely written for any single reader in mind. They might be written for the more general idea of “readers,” but most often—at least I hope so—they’re written for the author, because the stories just need to get out.

I’ve often gotten comments about writing females that are either “surprisingly nice” or “total bitches.” I’ve also had people say there was a male character who was a total shit in the story, and other comments that say another male character was really well written and surprisingly nice.

I have no clue why any of that should be surprising. Why? Because while I write fiction, I try to keep it realistic to a point. In real life, ALL WOMEN AREN’T BITCHES and ALL MEN ARE NOT ASSHOLES. Yes, there are both in this world, everyone knows someone like that, but those can’t be the only kind of people we write. Not even when that bitch you still hate like nobody else wants to end up as a character in your book.

People have different views and different experiences in life. Everyone looks at what they read or watch or even write from their own, more or less narrow view. Sometimes something an author has written in a book upsets or even insults them. Like my dear friend Anna Martin says, in that case the only thing for the author to do is to say “I’m sorry.”

I’d add that the next thing is to move on and hope the reader can deal, because while authors have to take responsibility over what they write, we don’t always get to choose what we write. The muses don’t work that way. But a reader ALWAYS has the choice of what to read. They have the choice of not picking up another book of an author whose work upset or insulted them, ever again. Or even if they just plain disliked someone’s book.

Another thing that recently came up for me personally was a review I happened to see. It was something I’d seen before, and it went a little bit like this: “I had the same problem with this book I have had with other books by Tia Fielding before.” I won’t even mention what the problem was, specifically. I don’t have to, to make my point. This boils down to the previous paragraph in my ramble: a reader never HAS TO read another book by author they don’t like or they had been disappointed with.

If I didn’t like, say Nutella, but kept trying it over and over again and telling people left and right now I STILL don’t like Nutella, wouldn’t they think I’m nuts? (Pun not intended.) Seriously? There’s a quote of unclear origins that fits this example to a T.

Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.

In the case of a reader leaving low rating reviews over and over again (and a handful of other readers doing the same thing) it might actually lead to drops in average ratings and then low sales for an author who only wrote what their muse and his/her wicked plot bunnies dictated them to.

I also bumped into this thing today: coming out or not coming out in books (or in real life). Now there are readers and authors alike who might try to take the high road on their high horse and claim that it’s wrong for a character in a book to NOT come out. Like choosing to be closeted might be a Bad Thing.

I firmly believe in choice and responsibility, and I believe in them in that exact order. Would I write a story about someone who from the beginning to the end of the book abuses a spouse with clear conscience and makes it into a good thing? No, because that’s plain wrong in all sort of ways I also find WRONG outside my writing. I wouldn’t go against my own beliefs in my writing and show it in a good light. That’s my artist’s integrity speaking, and my integrity as a person.

Coming out is different. There is no right answer to whether someone should come out or not, and this goes with both fiction and real life. Whenever someone screams that this or that celebrity should just come out already to support the GLBTQ community, I look at them blankly. Yes, I think it would benefit the community, but you do not make those decisions for someone else.

Coming out, whether you’ve had to do it or not yourself, whether you had positive or negative results yourself, is yours only when YOU are the one coming out in YOUR personal life.

You, whoever you are, do NOT own the coming out process of someone else, real or fictional. I can’t stress this enough, really. As someone who has had to come out in real life, the thought of someone dictating another person’s truth is just insane to me.

Everything about coming out is about truth. You might see not coming out as lying, and frankly I don’t give a shit if you do or if you think it’s detrimental to the GLBTQ community, because it’s someone else’s truth, and sometimes it’s better to lie to protect yourself or those around you. The reasons are as many as there are people in the closet or out in the open. But they’re not your reasons.

Okay, today’s rant is done. Finally. I hope you’re having a nice time-of-the-year wherever you are, and please do stay tuned to my blog, because I have a fun little thing (weird author interviews is the most accurate way to describe it all) coming up in the near future in weekly posts.

 

 

 

03.13.2014

Novel Number Five!

Posted in Releases

I suddenly have Lou Bega’s Mambo Number 5 playing in my head. (You’re welcome.)

I guess I never thought I’d come this far. Four years ago I was thinking I wouldn’t be published before my thirtieth birthday. That was my original Big Dream, by the way. I was published a few days after my thirtieth in 2011. So I almost made it, and I have to be happy with that.

Now, three years later, I have several—holy crap, almost ten!—shorter stories out there, and in a few days my fifth novel will be out there for everyone to see. FIVE NOVELS. Can I repeat HOLY CRAP!

How did all of this happen? When I started writing fan fiction almost five years ago after having not written a thing in years, I never thought this was where I was heading. It wasn’t my intention to be a published author. Instead, I’d found a new fandom I enjoyed, found out I could relate enough to use someone else’s characters and write these stories some people actually liked to read.

That was mind blowing: Someone liked what I wrote. These days the feedback is less instantaneous and I can’t just upload a story I’ve just finished to some website and know that by the morning someone has left a comment. What hasn’t changed is the fact that I’m still blown away whenever someone who likes my books emails me to say so.

I’m not a big name in M/M romance and I probably never will be, but that’s not why I write so it’s fine. I write for me, because my head likes to get the evil bunnies hopping about out before I go crazier. I write because there’s no other way for me to live anymore.

Even when I struggle with real life stuff and health stuff or even the fact that I live a long way away from any big events that mostly happen in the US, the plot bunnies keep doing their thing and there will be more stories, eventually.

The next one that’s out, number five, is a story of a washed out alcoholic country music star Jasper and a truck driving, songwriting, tattooed ex soul surfer Cade. The story also has rescue pitbulls, inner struggles, coming out, families, and lots of music references I couldn’t help—the boys insisted.

So if you like Mirage, let me know. I’d really love to hear from you. Oh and if you want to, you can follow my daily music countdown to Mirage on my FB author page, just click here.

12.25.2013

Holiday Freebie Story!

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I hope everyone has a lovely holiday. Here’s a freebie short short story from yours truly. The link is to my Mediafire and it’s completely safe to download from there. I hope you enjoy the story, and have a nice rest of the year!

11.12.2013

Finnshifters 3: Howl Swee…

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Holy crap! I totally almost forgot it was TOMORROW! So yeah, umm… A few things:

This book is Sean and Rider’s story. As always in this series, it’s also the story of what’s going on at the farm. It’s still not your typical romance story nor your typical shifter story, so there’s that. If you’re still with me on the series, THANK YOU! I love these guys, even if they’re difficult to write sometimes.

I have a Facebook chat at the Dreamspinner Press’s FB page coming on Saturday the 16th, so be there if you want a chance to win either a copy of Howl Sweet Howl or Positive. Or maybe some others, too. Who knows what I’ll come up with!

There’s also a blog tour that’s kicking off from that chat, and I’ll be updating information on my Facebook page, so you might want to check that out too.

What else…. Well, I do hope you enjoy FS3 and yeah, there might be one or two more books in the series, but more on those in the FB chat! ;)

10.20.2013

Coming Soon, Finnshifters…

Posted in Releases

After doing the writing thing for a couple of years and having seen quite a few release dates and coming soon page appearances, I’m happy to report that it still makes me go “ooooh!” and smile widely when I see that email in my inbox that says my next release is now on the coming soon page.

This time it’s Finnshifters 3: Howl Sweet Howl, which is Sean and Rider’s story, but as always with this series, it’s a story of how life continues on the farm after The Storm. If you haven’t read this series yet, but are interested in taking a look at my shifters, please start with FS1: Chuffed. There’s a continuous plot underneath the love stories, and you’ll miss out if you don’t read the books in order.

To celebrate FS3 and Positive, I’m planning on a blog tour AND I have a Facebook chat coming up on the Dreamspinner Press’s FB page too, so keep your eyes open so you won’t miss it. ;)

10.01.2013

Rainbow Award Finalists A…

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And, despite my disbelief, Falling into Place is one of them! The category for FiP is LGBT Erotic Romance, and I’m against some seriously scary names, let alone books. I’m dumbfounded to have made it this far, and frankly this is just…. *has no words for once* Also, please go Like my FB page. I’ll be doing a giveaway sometime soon-ish, so you might want to be in the loop for that and other news! :)

08.15.2013

Positive - Out Now! And a…

Posted in Releases

Hi, everyone!

It’s the Day After for Positive. That means yesterday was the release date, and I’m now biting my nails, waiting for reactions from the readers.

That said, I’ve gotten this question a few times now, and I think it’s best to address it here:

“Is Positive M/M/M?”

The short and true answer is no, Positive is NOT an M/M/M book. It has one scene of M/M/M and while some readers will definitely see that as coming out of the blue or lending nothing to the plot or even “being there for the smut”, it’s not there for those reasons.

The threesome my established couple in the book has is there for a reason. Because Brent and Shawn wanted to have a threesome. Because they could do it without it changing their relationship. They wanted to, both for their own reasons. I actually tried to fight the characters, I tried NOT to write the scene. They insisted they wanted and needed it. So I caved in.

I never write sex for the sake of sex, so that’s definitely not the case. This M/M/M scene is there for personal growth and want.

Oh and by the way, if you want to ‘Like’ me on Facebook, it’s now possible. You don’t have to friend me anymore. ;) If you ‘Like’ me, I promise to make some nice giveaways happen for special landmarks.

I’m also on Authorgraph now, so if you want anything signed, let me know!

I hope your end of summer is turning into the beginning of fall smoothly. Autumn is my favorite season, so I’m happy!

07.17.2013

Preorder Positive!

Posted in Releases

I got the email notification today, so I’m happy to announce that Positive is now on the Dreamspinner’s coming soon page. That means you can now preorder it!

I read the book through for the last time before the publishing yesterday, and I have to say I really like this book. Even if I say so myself, it’s a good book. Then again whenever I love one of my books, others don’t, so we shall see…

Despite the M/M/M tag on Dreamspinner’s website, there’s only one scene of M/M/M and the book is M/M with a longtime committed relationship in the center. So don’t let the M/M/M scare you! :)

Hope you all are having a nice summer so far!

07.08.2013

Cover reveal, sisu, and g…

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But not in that order.

Lately I’ve been thinking about readers as a whole, how I read, and what I think about all that as an author. First of all I honestly think that authors can’t necessarily expect a whole lot “understanding” from readers who don’t write.

Writing a story from beginning to end, especially when you also want to get it published, is different than anything you’ve probably ever done. Once you’ve gotten through all that and taken the reactions and reviews and ratings and feedback, you’re changed forever.

You’ll read differently too. You try to understand a book, the author, everything, much more. You’re less likely to jump into conclusions, to be harsh about another person’s work, and especially how you portray your opinions to other readers.

So the generalizations? In general, readers don’t see books like authors do. They think we write vampires because of Twilight and BDSM because 50 Shades of Shpoop. That’s not true. At least not often, not with proper authors who have integrity. Why? Because it takes months and months to get your story from an idea to a published book.

Sure, those two books I mentioned took a lot longer than a few months to die down even a little, but still, it’s virtually impossible to predict what will sell and when it will sell. Accusing authors of riding the wave of *enter some (sub)genre here* is stupid. Because it’s all but impossible to predict that much!

If I KNEW what the next huge thing would be, wouldn’t I be writing that instead of a story of a washed up forty-something country singer who is not only a recovering alcoholic, but also has kids, a low self-esteem, an ex-wife called Jolene and a tiny flickering hope within himself to find love just for himself? No, I wouldn’t be writing that book, I’d be writing the NEXT BIG THING to get maximum money out of my feeble efforts in writing.

When I write a story, I never, ever think what people in general will think about it. I can’t put myself down like that. I try to write for a living, here. I try to do that in M/M fiction, people! Do you have any idea how hard that can be?

In addition, I battle depression and the fact that English isn’t my first language. That, alone, makes my writing different from others. Different in a way that makes my style difficult for some people to read. In general, I’m could be thought of as a failure from the beginning.

How in the hell can I sell books with the starting point I have? How do I dare to think I might actually support myself and my menagerie with the way things are?

One word: Sisu.

Oh and here’s the cover for Positive, out August 14th. ;)

07.01.2013

Heat, news and upcoming r…

Posted in Releases

I’ve been slacking again. I’ll blame the heat, because frankly THIS CAN’T BE FINLAND!! It’s been so hot in here for the last nearly two weeks it’s ridiculous. When it’s not hot enough to boil me, it’s thundering so I can’t be online. The times I can write is used by editing or trying to write and I’ve done pretty good job with dodging the thunderstorms that have been pretty wicked this summer, naturally because of the heat.

On June 17th, I finally had my baby. Not a human one, I don’t have those and probably never will, but a doggie one. She came from Spain, she’s a rescue, and  I love her to bits. Her name is Tara, she’s a bull terrier mix and she’s around 10 months old now. She’s kept me pretty busy when we’ve had energy. As you can guess, the animals don’t like this much heat either. Oh and before someone asks, it’s been around 29C / 85F, continuously, which is a lot for us.

Back to business! I had a freebie story come out early June. It’s for the Goodreads M/M Romance group’s event called Love Has No Boundaries. You can find the story, titled Cherry Blossoms and Titanium here.

Next bit of news is that I have changed my next book’s name during the production process. It’s now called Positive instead of Tainted. I’ll have you a release date and such later, but here’s the blurb already:

Even after a decade, the life that journalist Brent Walsh and Milwaukee homicide detective Shawn Mackey have made together is far from boring. But when a new case cuts a weekend getaway short, they aren’t quite prepared for how it will impact their personal lives. Suddenly there’s too much to juggle: Shawn will be working the case of the sharpshooter who is trying to infect random people with HIV, Brent needs to cover the story but fears a conflict of interest, one of Shawn’s colleagues is attracted to him, and Brent sincerely needs to mend the painful break with his childhood best friend, Ollie, and heal their broken hearts.

Though case comes to a close, it’s not the end of their troubles. Shawn and Brent still face a past of old white lies, a present possibility of inviting another man to their bed, and a future with children, not to mention health issues and national fallout from the case. It’s enough to make them want to run away—until they realize they have to face those challenges head-on so they can get on with the life of love they’re hoping for.

Last but not least: I received a contract for Finnshifters 3 last night. This means the book will be out around Nov/Dec and I’ll, again, let you know more when I have the details. I know some of you have been waiting for this book for ages now, so I hope you’re happy for the heads up. :) It’s Sean’s book, it’s pretty angsty, and it’s–as always–about the farm family as a whole.

That’s about it for now. See you when I have more to post! :)

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