[sticky entry] Sticky: Introductory post

Mar. 26th, 2012 12:00 am
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Julian Griffith, after years of writing for her own amusement and that of her friends, will soon have her first novel, Love Continuance and Increasing, released by Storm Moon Press. It's an unconventional romance between two men and one woman set in England during the Napoleonic Wars. It's slated to come out in August of 2013. Her Christmas story, "Therefore Be Merry, Set Sorrow Aside," featuring the same characters, will be released by Storm Moon Press in December of 2013. "Your Most Humble and Obedient Servant", a story about a naval captain and a woman Barbary pirate, will appear in Storm Moon's forthcoming anthology Turning the Tables.

She's waiting to hear back on two more stories: "Cherish the Ladies", a lesbian Regency romance, and "Lost and Found", a romance between two soldiers in the Pacific theater of WWII.

The next projects she's contemplating include a novel about a musketeer and a Jewish woman playwright in Louis XIII's France, another about a "passing woman" soldier (who identifies as male) in the Peninsular War, and a series about what happens to the WWII soldiers after they get home. The eighteenth-century naval captain and the Barbary pirate are also asking for a sequel.

This journal will likely contain musings on the writing process, research notes, and the occasional excerpt. Also tea blogging and the occasional knitting project.




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 [livejournal.com profile] lunasariel just read Love Continuance and Increasing, and she couldn't have said nicer things about it:

Anyway, I'm almost definitely biased in favor of LCI, because I watched it get written, at least via tumblr and LJ - I can vouch for the amount of research that went into it (a well-researched historical novel is the way straight to my heart, let me tell you), and reading about all the food she cooked to make sure that she was Doing It Right made me pretty consistently hungry. But it had everything I look for and love in a Regency romance - obsessive strategic analysis of who danced with who and how many times, a peppery old grandmama, escapes into the garden for private conversations, and plenty of dudes in (and occasionally out of) uniforms. ;) And boy howdy, these were some nice uniforms, and some nice dudes filling them! But then again, I have a well-documented and long-standing Uniform Problem, so I guess it's more of a surprise that I liked the F in this particular M/M/F, but I did. Caroline felt very eighteen to me, but a sensible and not at all shrieky eighteen - I was pleased beyond words when she and Rockingham actually, y'know, talked to each other like rational adults about things like a marriage based on affection rather than OMG ILU 5EVA, instead of the usual parade of misunderstandings and "dammit, you wouldn't be having any of these problems if you talked to each other for five seconds" that usually have me chucking romances across the room in rage. But, wonder of wonders, they managed to get everything sorted out to the satisfaction of all involved, with the only significant capital-M Misunderstanding coming from a third party, and even then, they actually did talk to each other for five seconds (and some change), so yay for acting like rational adults! :D

 
There's more at Amazon. But I had to brag!
 


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So, the idea that THIS is the ONLY WAY to be a professional writer has been pretty thoroughly debunked. Scalzi said it best: "Did you write something? Did you get paid for it? Congratulations, you're a professional writer!"

Nevertheless, I wanted to take a whack at these questions anyway, just to show you all my life.

1. Is your home/work place messy because that time you’d put into cleaning it is better spent writing?
 
My home is messy because I'm a messy person. Blame it on the ADHD-inattentive that took 40 years to diagnose. If I weren't writing, I'd be knitting, or surfing tumblr, or reading, or baking Victoria sandwich cake, or making a vampire hunting kit in a vintage train case, or, well, ANYTHING but cleaning. 

This is not necessarily a good thing. Actually, it is DEFINITELY not a good thing. It's easier to write in a clean, organized environment. I'm just rubbish at creating one. Out of my own stuff, anyway. I'm a demon at cleaning and organizing other people's places! SERIOUSLY. WE JUST ALL NEED TO FORM A CIRCLE AND MOVE ONE PLACE TO THE RIGHT TO GET A CLEAN CUP.

2. Do you routinely turn down evenings out with friends because you need to be home writing instead?

I have spent around 20 years living two hours away from my core friend group. I am working toward changing this. It's closer than it's been in a long time. Next question.
 
 
3. Do you turn off the television in order to write?

I don't spend that much time with the television anyway? On average I care about one show per season. If my housemate is watching something I don't care about, I put on my big over-the-ear headphones and tune Pandora to "Corelli". Works a treat.
 
 
4. Would you rather receive useful criticism than praise?

Why is this an either-or question? Useful criticism is great! That's what I have [personal profile] mswyrr for - she knows how to spot the places that need fixing. But I have the standard-issue Fragile Writer Ego - I also need a lot of praise. Luckily, I have a solid group of friends who genuinely seem to like my stuff.
 
5. Do you plan vacations around writing opportunities (either research or networking potential)?

Part of me wants to say "what vacations?" because I'm broke, and have been for decades. However, to engage with the spirit of the question: I write historical romance. I write it because history fascinates me, and has for most of my life. When my parents planned our amazing trip to the UK when I was 16, do you know how we planned it? Around BOOKS WE HAD READ and HISTORICAL THINGS WE WANTED TO SEE. Because these were the things we loved. We saw Sherlock Holmes' Baker Street and Jack the Ripper's Whitechapel. We saw James Herriot's Yorkshire. We saw Stonehenge and Avebury and Lindisfarne and the Lake District and SO MANY THINGS because we'd read about them, and we WANTED TO SEE THEM.

Why on earth would I do things differently NOW?

So I go to Mystic Seaport and to the USS Constitution and to Plimoth Plantation and to stare at genre paintings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art and tapestries in the Cloisters and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston has the most amazing dressing cases with silver fittings and...

I do this stuff because I love it. If I wanted to go spend a week at the beach, I could, because my parents have a summer cottage, but I get bored. Bring on the history!

Or amusement parks. Because roller coasters. I also have a deep, geek-level love of roller coasters. Like, rattling off the names of the different sorts of loops, the manufacturers, and the design engineers. That level of nerd-love.

Not everything is about the writing.
 
6. Would you rather be chatting about the business of writing with another writer than exchanging small talk with a good friend?

Um. Not really? Sometimes they're the same thing because a lot of my friends are also writers, and as a brand-new pro I am eager for advice and reassurance, but I'm also just as happy to be chatting about their dog, or Pacific Rim, or cosplay ideas, or how [personal profile] gehayi 's sun porch would look fantastic if we just spray-painted the metal furniture white and got some new cushions for it.
 
7. Have you ever taken a day job that paid less money because it would give you more time/energy/material to write?

Ask me this question when I've been offered that hypothetical day job that pays more money, okay?
 
8. Are you willing to give up the nice home you know you could have if you devoted that time you spend writing to a more lucrative career?

Once again, we're in Does Not Apply territory. At one point I owned a 6-bedroom Victorian house. I wasn't trying to earn a living as a writer. I couldn't afford it THEN, not before my divorce, not after. I miss the tiled fireplace and the carved newel post and the giant claw foot tub and all the other architectural details. I do NOT miss trying to HEAT that monster, or knowing that I couldn't afford any of the structural maintenance.

Also, I was rubbish at cleaning it. See question 1.

I'm currently working out a house-sharing plan that will lower expenses for everyone involved, so there's a better possibility that we can all have a nice home AND not have to worry so much about lucrative careers. Because, sadly, I don't think I'm up to the demands of a lucrative day job. Years of under-treated mental health issues have taken a toll. I'm hoping I can get the medical billing and coding certification and get part-time, from-home work that will pay me enough to cover my minimized expenses in a nice home shared with friends.

This wouldn't be possible if a friend didn't already HAVE a home with sufficient space in it. Expense-sharing will help, and "nice" is an ongoing project that involves at least as much labor as money, and labor I've got. It's amazing what proper deployment of existing bookshelves will do.

But yeah. "Nice home" in the traditional nuclear-family, solid-salary, home-improvement-loan way is just never going to be on the table for me. That possibility went out the window years ago, though I didn't know it at the time. So I have to be resourceful and creative. Whether I write or not.
 
9. Have you done all these things for at least five years?

Really? There's a minimum time served clause or something? This isn't even worthy of engaging with.
 
10. Are you willing to live knowing that you will likely never meet your ambitions, but you hold to those ambitions nonetheless?

...I think this is called the human condition. And I'm DONE.
 
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Here's where I've been appearing the past few days:

Joyfully Jay, August 7, 2013 : Why Historical Romance?

Pants Off Reviews, August 7, 2013 : Bisexual Men in Regency Romance

Alex BeecroftGiveaway! August 8, 2013 : The Role of Women in MMF Historical Romance

M. A. Church, August 9, 2013: another take on why I write historical romance

Mary’s Ménage Whispers, Friday, August 9th2013: Ménage à Trois relationships in late Georgian England 

Elisa Rolle’s Reviews and RamblingsGiveaway! August 10, 2013

All you have to do to be entered to win an e-book copy of Love Continuance and Increasing is to leave a comment at either Alex Beecroft's or Elisa Rolle's posts (you can leave one on each)! Alex Beecroft's giveaway runs through 11:59 PM Eastern Time, Sunday, August 11th, so there's still time!

In other news... I haven't got much other news. I spent a few days at [personal profile] anne 's and came back to find my side of the sofa taken up by [personal profile] eternaleponine 's newly-created Pacific Rim Kaidanovsky plushies. She's currently sitting on the floor cutting out Russian letters that she drew on my failed bookplate labels so she can stick them to an old Army field coat my friend [livejournal.com profile] mhaille gave me a while back, so that it will say "Cherno Alpha" around a red star, and the Cyrillic for her name on the front where a mechanic's name patch would go.

And my kid is doing ALL THE LAUNDRY in preparation for heading off to college at the end of the month.

I should be doing ALL THE DISHES. 

As soon as I finish blogging, I will.
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 I'm over at World of Diversity today, talking about bringing same-sex relationships and working-class characters into the upper-class, marriage-minded world of the Regency romance.

Meanwhile, my visit with [personal profile] anne is going wonderfully - she's still getting to know her neighborhood, so we checked out a nearby diner, and discovered that it offers Irish as well as American breakfast goodies, so I got to have Irish sausage and white pudding with my eggs and home fries. And then we stopped in at a thrift store that was about two doors down, and my thrift-fu reasserted itself: a sleeveless dress in a small black-and-white houndstooth check for $8. And a pair of black low-heeled shoes, too. I am not going to tell you the size on the dress label, because I'm convinced it's outrageous vanity sizing, even if I have lost some weight recently. 

And we're meeting up with [personal profile] heavenscalyx for dinner at Redbones. Because Anne is originally from Texas, and she requires barbecue, and I have to see if Redbones passes muster.
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 Sitting on the sofa next to a good friend and listening while she reads the manuscript of your latest short story.

If you can arrange to have had terrific Indian food right before that, so much the better.

I'm at [personal profile] anne 's place for today and tomorrow, keeping her company while she deals with bureaucracy, and probably going to be the one who drives to Target, as she didn't learn to drive as part of the Boston Hivemind.

Fear us, for I brought the box sets of Hornblower and Pride & Prejudice, and we're watching them with Fangirl Commentary.

Interview!

Aug. 5th, 2013 09:32 am
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 Today I'm sitting in The Comfy Chair over at Elin Gregory's blog. Go check it out!

I am going to be BUSY. I'm going to visit [personal profile] anne for a couple of days, and I have to print out bookplates, and because her printer isn't working I'm also printing the forms she needs to take to the RMV, and I have a bunch of phone calls to make, and I have to drive my teenager to the end-of-production potluck over at the theater, and I'm going over to [personal profile] gehayi 's for the usual, and I have to PACK, which I think means I need to do laundry... yeah. Busy.

Only two guest posts left to write, though.

And at [personal profile] anne 's we're going to indulge in Pride and Prejudice and knitting. (Much better than zombies, wouldn't you say?)
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Even though I knew my parents weren't going to read my book - at my request, I might add, because I am much too embarrassed to know that my mother might read explicit sex scenes that I wrote - I dedicated my book to them, which made them very happy.

My mother said, "Now we have a book dedicated to us by each of our children. Not very many parents can say that!"

My brother isn't a novelist. But back in college he collaborated with one of his professors on a book about baseball. Check it out:



In the Ballpark, on Goodreads

My brother did the lion's share of the fieldwork. I've always loved the interview with the Philly Phanatic.

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To mark its release, I'm appearing over at Charlie Cochrane's livejournal for an interview, and promoting it over at Mychael Black's website. Thanks, both of you, for having me at your places today!

Length: 77,000 words
ISBN: 978-1-62757-022-0 (print),
978-1-62757-021-3 (ebook)

Cover Art by Lou Harper

e-book $6.99
softcover $13.99
bundle $15.99
Buy it now at Storm Moon Press
On Goodreads: Love Continuance and Increasing

Links for Amazon and Barnes & Noble coming soon! but buy it from Storm Moon because I get better royalties that way

If you'd like me to send you a signed (and personalized, if you want) bookplate, just send me a message with your address, and I'll be happy to do it.
[personal profile] mswyrr made the logo. It's really pretty.

Be sure to subscribe to my website, where I'll be hosting lots of interesting guest authors over the next month, and probably beyond.

*falls over dead*





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 That is, stuff you start doing to avoid doing OTHER things you need to do.

I've been working on stuff for my upcoming blog tour to promote Love Continuance and Increasing. I've got a partial list of where I'll be appearing up at my website , if you're curious, though of course I'll be announcing them here as they go up.

Speaking of my website, it has an operational Follow button now, so you should all go over there and follow it. I promise it won't be identical content to what's here - I'll be hosting a lot of guest bloggers, too, and probably other things.

That Follow button? I spent several hours last night getting it to work. It took installing a different plugin that alerted me about what I was doing wrong, and I fixed that, but I couldn't just keep that later plugin because IT didn't want to work as a sidebar widget.

If you don't use Wordpress this is probably very boring. I'm just learning now how to use it. The learning curve is kinda steep.

But the point is, I spent several hours on that last night. And I wrote a blog post for it today in order to have new content and in order to teach myself how to wrap text around an image. I got that part, at least.

Meanwhile, I have SEVEN "guest blog post" essays that I need to be working on for the tour. (At least I have the first turned in and a couple of interviews in the can already.)

And what am I about to do?

Unload the dish drainer.

Fine, that really does need to get done.

But I'm catwaxing.

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 Two head cleanings and a head alignment check later, my printer is cooperating with me again. So I'm able to print bookplates on 3⅓"x4" matte labels, customized with the beautiful logo that [personal profile] mswyrr made for me:

The name "Julian Griffith" in dark red script, on a bisque-colored background, with a compass rose and a portion of a globe showing England and Europe at the right side.


So, if anyone is getting a print copy of my book, and would like a bookplate inscribed to you, drop me a line at juliangriffith1801 at gmail dot com, and I'll mail one out to you.
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The Haunting of Maddy Clare, by Simone St. James, won the RITA Awards this year in both Best First Novel and Best Novel with Strong Romantic Elements.


The summary:

Sarah Piper's lonely, threadbare existence changes when her temporary agency sends her to assist a ghost hunter. Alistair Gellis-rich, handsome, scarred by World War I, and obsessed with ghosts- has been summoned to investigate the spirit of nineteen-year-old maid Maddy Clare, who is haunting the barn where she committed suicide.

Since Maddy hated men in life, it is Sarah's task to confront her in death. Soon Sarah is caught up in a deperate struggle. For Maddy's ghost is real, she's angry, and she has powers that defy all reason.


Can Sarah and Alistair's assistant, the rough, unsettling Matthew Ryder, discover who Maddy was, whereshe came from, and what is driving her desire for vengeance-before she destroys them all?


Smart Bitches, Trashy Books held a RITA Reader Challenge, asking readers to write reviews of all the nominated books. The review I wrote for The Haunting of Maddy Clare is here. It went up on July 19, and I forgot to link to it then, but you can read it now.

I'm not surprised it won RITAs. tt reminded me a lot of Sarah Waters' work, especially Affinity and Little Stranger. I'll be interested to see more of what Simone St. James writes.
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 This began as a comment in [personal profile] unbroken_halo 's journal. She was complaining about being asked to show her characters falling in Insta-Love. She felt that it was more realistic for them to start from a place of lust and only develop their emotional connection and desire for long-term commitment after they'd acted on the physical attraction - that men especially think "yeah, I'd tap that" before any feelings of "omg I want to spend the rest of my life with you" develop, if they ever do.

There's a discussion that could happen about the gendered assumptions there, but this is not that discussion. Leaving that entirely aside, I agreed that physical attraction coming before romantic connection is both plausible and frequent, but romance-as-a-genre isn't necessarily about that - it's about the emotional payoff of the HEA, and sometimes that means making the story about having ALL THE FEELS. And so we kicked it around a little, and here is my comment that I want to share with you:

Oh, and you've got the constraints of a short story! It's definitely harder to move your couple to their HEA without insta-love if you've only got limited space to do it in.

For the one m/m short story I've sold, (ed.: "Lost and Found in the Pacific", coming out from Torquere in September) I didn't start the men at their initial meeting. I introduced them as established BFFs and the story arc went through crisis situation, to reveal of desire/declaration of love, to the consummating sex scene, and wound up with a promise of commitment. I don't think I consciously planned this -- these two were, for all practical purposes, AUs of a fannish OTP of mine and their romance arc has always been friends-to-lovers, so I just set them in their AU and figured out where their friends-to-lovers turning point was in their new life stories, and wrote about that. If I'd been doing it at a longer length, I could have followed them back to their initial meeting, or even to the POV character's story before he met his other half, and I could have extended it beyond their promise through the obstacles they have to overcome before they can settle down and make a life together -- these are TOTALLY novel-length boys, and they want me to write them a detective series AFTER they settle down so that I can keep writing about them without making their relationship the source of all drama and peril. It's like photography, in a way, where the most important part is composition: deciding what to show.

In the novel, the men's relationship arc as a couple, from meeting to what they thought was an end, took up the entire first half of the book -- fourteen chapters. Mildly antagonistic meeting in the first chapter resolving into mutual respect, attraction developing in the second and third chapters (one from each of the men's POVs), chapters four and five pursuing the acquaintance to where they could establish that the attraction was mutual and take it to the bedroom, and then the next nine showing the relationship growing beyond the physical as the emotional connection deepened, even as they knew that they couldn't expect forever, until the point where they always knew they'd had to break it off. That's nearly 40,000 words. The next 40,000 follows Guy #1 with the girl, brings #2 back and creates HIS relationship with the girl, and finally brings them all together.

I don't think you can do an arc like that in a short story, any more than you could take my M/M couple from the short story through their first meeting, to their declaration of love over a year later, and then through about three more years of obstacles until they reach a settled-down HEA in the space of under 20,000 words. Okay, MAYBE in 20,000 words if I compressed it pretty heavily, but it would be uneven. It'd flow a lot better if I started before their meeting and gave them plenty of detail and gave them, oh, 65,000 words to show it all.

First meeting to HEA in a short story? It's GOING to be stylized and artificial.
 

This is a thing that I did not know until I wrote it down, so I wanted to put it here so I'd remember it.
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I took the plunge and created an actual Wordpress site: www.julian-griffith.com. It's new, so there aren't a lot of posts yet, but I also linked a couple of short stories related to Love Continuance and Increasing, and you should all go look at it and see the GORGEOUS banner that [personal profile] mswyrr made for me. Which I then cleverly put on my tumblr as well, not that anyone ever sees an individual person's tumblr page, because we all read posts on our dashboards, but it's there.

I'm feeling very clever having figured out how to use the Wordpress dashboard and plug-ins and widgets to get something that feels functional.

I'm still creating more blogrolls - I mean to have one for review sites, and another one for blogs of historical interest that I follow, in addition to the ones I already have - and if you want me to link to you, drop me a note. If you have any suggestions for things I haven't done with the site that I should, let me know that too.

But I spent loads of time last night poking at it, and I think it's safe to go live!
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A dark-haired young woman in a white Regency gown looks off into the distance to the right, her hands steepled together in front of her. Two men, one in a British army officer's red uniform of the Napoleonic Wars and the other in the blue coat of a lieutenant of the Royal Navy, gaze back at her, patient and yearning. Below the title bar, there is a seascape with a tall ship at the right-hand side.

It's here! Love Continuance and Increasing is available for pre-order from Storm Moon Press!
Lieutenant William Thorne, of His Majesty's Navy, was a man of humble origins. He knew that his affair with Major Anthony Rockingham of the 43rd Infantry couldn't last forever, not only because the war against Napoleon sent him on blockade duty in the English Channel while the major's regiment trained ashore, but because Rockingham was a viscount, and viscounts must marry. When Rockingham's letter reached him, saying that he'd chosen Miss Caroline Filmer as his bride, it was no more than Thorne had expected.
 
What he had not expected, when he returned home after the Battle of Trafalgar, was to find an invitation to the christening of Rockingham's son. He had not expected, when he met the young viscountess, that he would fall instantly and passionately in love with her. And he had certainly never expected that Caroline would fall just as desperately in love with him. Thorne was sure that their feelings for each other could only lead to disaster, even more so as his love for Rockingham had never gone away. While the war with France continued, he found himself fighting a war within his own heart...
e-book: $6.99 $5.59 softcover: $13.99 $11.19 bundle: $15.99 $12.79 20% discount applies until August 2 release date! Click here for an excerpt: )
 
"Of course, my darling. What did you wish to say?"
 
Caroline curled tighter against him, trying to reassure herself that she would not soon be pushed away. "Do you remember, before we wed, when you bid me that should I ever find myself in love, I should tell you of it, and you would not reproach me?"
 
Anthony kissed her hair, and rubbed his hand in circles on her back. "I remember well. Are you telling me of that now?"
 
Caroline found that she could answer him only in the smallest of voices. "I am."
 
He kissed her again. "I'm glad to hear you tell me," he said. "I hoped very much that you would believe me when I said I'd not be angry, and trust me enough to do so. I'm glad you find me worthy of that trust. But you are unhappy. Will you tell me more?"
 
Caroline blinked back the tears that were welling in her eyes. "I did not wish this," she said. "It came all unbidden. I hoped it might be a moment's fancy, but I cannot put him from my thoughts. I fear I am in love with Lieutenant Thorne." She sniffled. "And I was right. Being in love is most uncomfortable."
 
Anthony held her close, resting his lips at the crown of her head as she hid her face against his shoulder. He moved his hand in slow strokes down her spine. "Oh, my darling. I'm sorry it grieves you so. I don't blame you for an instant. William is the best of men, and it's no surprise you should love him. I love him, too."
 
"But hardly in the same way, I think, my lord?"
 
"In very much the same way, I should think. I'll speak it plain: you wish to lie with him?"
 
The tears would not be stopped. "I do."
 
"As do I," Anthony said softly. "We were lovers once, and I care for him still."
 
The surprise was enough to do what comfort could not. Lovers? Well, Anthony had said, upon their very wedding night, that he'd lain at times with men. She'd not taken much notice of it at the time, being intent on other concerns, and he'd never spoken of it since. But he'd told her privately of Captain Birtwhistle's love for Alexander Godwin, not with any distaste, but only so that she might not trouble them with questions about sweethearts; and with Mr. Godwin one of Stephen's godfathers, it was clear at least that Anthony counted it no sin, never mind who might think otherwise. And could she fault him for desiring William, when she did the same? But that they'd once been lovers... she'd never have suspected.
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Or, How I Wound Up At Readercon.

I hadn't planned to go. Too much studying, not enough money. But it turned out that the blood drive was short of volunteers for its signup/admin table, and I help with the blood drive at Arisia, so I was on the list that got asked for help, and they said they'd comp people, and I said "sure, why not..."

So, for the price of the gas to drive there, and a few hours helping out at the table (including playing running footman when the walkie-talkies were acting up), I got to go go a panel on Romance in SF/F, another on the works of Roger Zelazny (one of my earliest fandoms, and if you're guessing that has something to do with why I call myself Julian, you're not wrong), a kaffeeklatsch with [personal profile] ceciliatan , a few other cool panels -- I got to meet John Crowley! and finally meet [personal profile] yhlee in person! and then... [personal profile] matociquala said "come to the room parties with me."

Right. I'd forgotten that Bear always knows where to find the booze. That turned into an unplanned overnight stay.

Now I'm home, and I have a new question: does anyone have advice on how to select an excerpt for promotional purposes?

Should it be fairly close to the beginning, or should it be farther along? Should I try to have something that has all three main characters in it, or is it okay to just have two? Should I choose something that particularly sets up that it's a ménage story, or is that unneccesary? And how spoilery is too spoilery? Also, how long should it be?

Here's the two choices I had in mind:

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 I got a look at the first draft of my cover art for Love Continuance and Increasing last night.

I am SO excited!

It's a first draft, and there are things that need tweaking, but overall? WOW.

I love the layout, I love the character poses, the typography is gorgeous, and there's even a tall ship worthy of Geoffrey Hunt.

AND THEY'RE ALL WEARING CLOTHES. Which is a huge relief given how many times I begged "no naked people!" on my questionnaire.

They're even wearing period-appropriate clothes! I didn't get the "shampoo model in a prom dress" that turns up so often on the big-name historical romances.

There are definitely things that need tweaking. I won't spell them out, because I'm pretty confident they can be fixed, except for the bit where we'll never get the actors I've cast in my head to pose for the cover -- they'd have had to do it ten years ago in any case. 

It's going to be a BOOK...


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That nice polite letter I wrote to the B-24 guy, waving my little Pride flag but leaving out the surprise!pr0n?

I got an answer:

Thanks Julian. That is really great news about getting your short story published and the bonus of having the proceeds go toward a worthy military cause is good to hear as well. It seems to me Torquere made the selection very quickly. Shoot me a link once it is published so I can read it, if it can't be emailed due to size, etc.

Interestingly, you are the second person who has contacted me this week about the portion of my family webpage dedicated to my dad's time in the war and as a prisoner of the Germans.


Definitely brightened my day.

Also brightening my day: Love, Continuance and Increasing is being proofed right now, has ISBNs, and the release date of August 2 is FIRM! The cover art is in process and I ought to be seeing a first draft soon. Yes, I do still get input on drafts! I was worried about that. Even better, Storm Moon decided that their lead artist, whose style tends to the "bare-chested elves in leather pants" school of dark fantasy (which, you know, is great for dark fantasy), was not the right one for my story (because, after all, that's not what I wrote), and they've assigned it to a different one! Whew. 

I'm gonna have a book...

ETA: holy shit. When I replied to the message above, I told him I'd send a pre-order link as soon as it was available, but here, I attached the story if you want to read it now, it's short but it's got a mild sex scene in it.

HE LIKED THE STORY. He said nice things about the character development and hoped things worked out well for Harry and Andrew!

!!!

Yes, yes they do, actually. Not that it's all easy sailing ahead of them, but they live on long enough to be one of the first couples lined up at City Hall. (They'd be about ninety. I bet people would move them up the line.)
julian_griffith: (Default)
 I'm appearing today at Top 2 Bottom Reviews as part of their Storm Moon Press July blog feature. Go have a look!
julian_griffith: (Default)
But, since my story got accepted, I sent this to the author of the super-helpful B-24 page:

Dear Mike,

I'm proud to say that my story, "Lost and Found in the Pacific", will be appearing in September in a Torquere Press charity anthology - I just got the acceptance today! The proceeds from the anthology will support Outserve SDLN, a non-profit that provides legal services and support to LGBT military individuals and families, working toward equal representation and benefits.

It's a romance between two airmen, and I based the background on the events of the Green Hornet crash that Laura Hillenbrand wrote about in Unbroken, which is an amazing book. Of course, I had my pair get rescued instead of captured by the Japanese - it's only a short story, not a novel.

I'd be happy to send it along to you if you don't want to wait for the anthology to be released.

Yours,

Julian
I figure, this makes me a voice for equality without filling his mailbox with surprise!sex scene, which... strikes me as a bit rude. If I get an unpleasant response, I can set up a filter in Gmail to dump any further mail from him into a folder I'll ignore. If he turns out to be more broad-minded than I'm giving him credit for, I'll send the story as an attachment, with a note in the body of the email that says it's got a mild sex scene in it along with the crash and the rescue.

Because, honestly, a lot of my doubts about sending it didn't really come from "what if he's a jerk about romance between men", but from "I really don't think a straight guy will react well to finding a story with a gay sex scene in it when he's probably expecting Wartime Adventure."

So yeah. This may end badly, or it may end better than I expect, but at least the idea is out there beyond the m/m romance readers and writers bubble.


julian_griffith: (Default)
That's its tentative new title. Torquere accepted the story, but they already had a "Lost and Found".

Nice to know I can knock something out in four days and still make it work!

This is for a charity anthology, and I'll just quote from the Torquere site:

For the 2013-2014 Charity event, which will premiere in September 2013, we've chosen OutServe-SLDN as our donation organization. OutServe is an non-profit that provides legal services and support to LGBT military individuals and families, working toward equal representation and benefits.
Depending on how fast Storm Moon gets their release schedule back on track, this may in fact be the first of my pieces that sees print.

Four for four, so far, with #5 still waiting for an answer. Not. Too. Shabby.

Definitely need to work on the next novel, whichever one I pick. And SOMEHOW make two new spaces for bookshelves, because I'm going to have to dedicate one to the Wars of Religion in France and another one for post-WWII queer history of NYC. Harry and Andrew from this story aren't content with a mere 6500 words. They told me about their lives right up into the 21st century, where they were one of those same-sex couples in their eighties lined up at City Hall, and they want me to keep writing.



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