Publisher: Etopia Press
Genre: M/M Erotic Romance
Cover artist: Valerie Tibbs
Heat rating: 4
Tagline: How much love does it take to heal the wounds of hate?
Sam and Charlie have been together over a decade, and their commitment to each other has only grown stronger through the years. But love isn't always easy, and eighteen months after a violent assault, their fairy-tale relationship is still struggling. Charlie can’t shake the lingering fear of attracting more violence by displaying affection, and he's angry at himself for not getting past it. Sam would do anything to help Charlie feel better--if only he knew what that was.
The century-old farmhouse in Northwest Oregon is the perfect place to spend the holidays with Sam’s family, but it was their refuge after the attack, and it still holds painful memories of those difficult first months. Christmas should be a joyful time, but even being surrounded by people who love him isn’t enough to make Charlie feel safe. He could try to keep to himself, but even if Sam agreed to give him the space he needs, Sam’s warm and loving family might not. And even though they agreed not to exchange gifts, Sam has a surprise up his sleeve that he hopes will make everything merry and bright. But he may end up more surprised than Charlie before the week is out…
Amazon UK http://amazon.co.uk/dp/B00APRADZ0
Amazon CA http://amazon.ca/dp/B00APRADZ0
Barnes and Noble http://barnesandnoble.com/w/comfort-and-joy-charley-descouteaux/1113992806?ean=2940016096100
What are your main characters' names, ages, and occupations?
Sam White and Charlie Price are both 28 and professional musicians.
Tell us about your latest book, including its genre. Does it cross over to other genres? If so, what are they?
Comfort and Joy, m/m erotic romance, is the story of an established couple, Sam and Charlie, and their struggle to heal the lingering effects of an assault and re-capture the joy of their love for each other while celebrating Christmas with Sam's family.
How do you come up with ideas?
Coming up with ideas is the easy part. I've gotten ideas from things people say, music, random things I see while on public transportation. The hard part is deciding which ones would make the best stories. I admit, I'm not always sure about that. Take my current WIP: it's a paranormal erotic romance with mystery elements. I've never written anything like it before so I have no way to know if it's any good until it's finished and I start sending it out.
What is the single most important part of writing for you?
It proves that I'm not insane. *lol* At least it proved that to me, because I've had characters in my head all my life. When I was a kid sometimes that worried me, but now it's just awesome.
Where do you start when writing? Research, plotting, outline, or...?
I’m not a big plotter so I usually start with a character and a feeling. With Comfort and Joy, I wanted to write a Christmas story that celebrates family and love and all that good stuff. I added a couple I’d known for a while and just started writing. It doesn’t always work out, but this time it did.
If you could give the younger version of yourself advice what would it be?
Your home doesn’t have to be clean, write more!
Is your muse demanding?
Sometimes -- usually at night when I'm trying to sleep! He gives me a lot of wonderful material to work with, but is even more of a night owl than I am. His sweet spot is between 11 p.m. and 2 or 3 a.m. which makes it hard when I have to get up early.
Are your stories driven by plot or character?
Most often, by character. Most people have defining moments in their lives, and so do characters. These are where good stories come from.
That said, my current WIP started out very plot-driven. I knew what I wanted the world to be like but it took a while to get to know the characters who live there and I'm still learning! It was fun going about it in such a different way.
How do you balance a life outside of writing with deadlines and writing muses?
Balance? I'm not good at that. If I could, I'd spend most of every day writing. Unfortunately, I can't do that so I have to make lists of things that I can't let slide and force myself to do those first, like grocery shopping and cooking dinner. It works more often than not, although I do have a long history of transferring items to several lists before they get done. To paraphrase Tyler Durden, it's about letting the truly unimportant things slide.
What is the craziest thing you did as a kid, and would it ever end up in a book?
Well, kid is a relative term. In my late teens and early twenties I did a lot of experimenting to try and figure out my sexuality. Some of that will definitely end up in a book, or maybe several!
What are some jobs you've done that would end up in a book?
I’ve had a lot of strange jobs, or at least jobs that brought me in contact with strange people. I’ve been a bartender and a waitress, worked in book stores, flower shops, and a three-person newspaper office. Some of these have popped up in stories, and I’m sure more will in the future!
What do you hope readers take with them after reading your work?
I’m not sure, but I hope they’ll tell me what they do take with them. I’d love to hear from any reader anytime!
List two authors we would find you reading when taking a break from your own writing.
Like most writers I love to read. I read a lot of YA because those authors are amazing at writing a tightly-plotted story. My favorites are Holly Black, Sarah Rees Brennan and John Green. I also love reading LGBT fiction and M/M Romance. My favorites are Tara Lain because she makes me laugh and Amy Lane because she makes me cry.
If you were a tool, what would people use you to do?
I really wanted to tackle this one, but the perfect answer escapes me. It never fails, the ideas come faster than I can write them down as long as I'm not trying to write about myself! *lol*
As a child, what was your favorite thing about school?
Everything! I loved school and was a shameless apple-polisher. Teachers and librarians are still some of my favorite people. I was one of those nerdy kids who wanted to write reports about what I saw while playing in the back yard!
If money were not an object, where would you most like to live?
I'd love to have a cute little cottage on the Oregon Coast. My dream house is a cozy single-story three bedroom with weathered blue-gray wood siding, beach access and a big old tree in the back yard.
Picture yourself as a store. Considering your personality and lifestyle, what type of products would be sold there?
I'd be one of those dusty little antique shops run by a little old lady who has no idea what things are truly worth. Everything from ornate gilt frames to used books to kitschy statues and vintage hats and purses would cram the shelves, and if you really loved something it would be at a price you could afford. Either that or the store mentioned on The Daily Show last week, "Chocolate, Blowjobs & Beyond".
Please complete the sentence
I'm always ready for some smash-mouth football.
When I'm alone, I blast metal or club mixes and dance around while I clean house.
You'd never be able to tell, but I have an inner-preppie who pines for argyle and houndstooth everything.
If I had a halo it would be rainbow-colored plastic from the dollar store and a little squished.
If I could be a guy for a day I'd fool around with as many dudes as possible, and knit in public.
I can never judge anyone for being strange because it's a safe bet I'm stranger than they are.
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