I’m very pleased to be included in Riptide’s debut line up. My story, SUCKS & BLOWS, is the epic (but short!) love story between a vampire and his dentist. Here’s the official blurb Riptide Editor Rachel Haimowitz crafted.
SUCKS & BLOWS: Deeply in debt to a loan shark, oversexed dentist Cary Drewel lives in fear of foreclosure and bodily harm. His new practice is missing one rather crucial element: patients. Which, terrifyingly enough, is the one thing his creditors also don’t have.
Pierce Sharpe, a powerful vampire with a drinking problem—or, more accurately, a problem drinking—can’t feed through the pain in his damaged eye teeth. In danger of losing his standing in the vampire community, Pierce seeks Cary's dental services. When Cary extracts his canines, Pierce must turn to other bodily fluids for sustenance.
Together, Cary and Pierce find a mutually pleasurable solution to both their problems. Turns out, though, there’s more to this dentist-patient relationship than simple suction, and what began with raw hunger from each of them might just end in love.
SUCKS & BLOWS came about when long-time LGBT author Greg Herren put out a submission call for vampire stories. He requested “dark and sensual,” and yet I sent him “laugh-out-loud and sensual.” The story was rejected, but Greg wrote a personal note saying how much he’d enjoyed reading it and was sure it would get published elsewhere.
I submitted it to Torquere who also have my story TART AND SOUL. That story is long enough to be up on Amazon, but as I understand it, they don’t put short stories on Amazon, so S&B didn’t get the wide exposure I would have liked. It did garner all glowing reviews. Apparently the m/m community likes a good laugh once in a while. Who knew?
Once the one-year contract with Torquere had expired, I tweeted on Amazon that I had this very funny short story I didn’t know what to do with. The great thing about Twitter, is even though I was tweeting back and forth with Murphy Jacobs, Vashtan/Aleks was able to join the convo and say, “I might have an opportunity for you.” That was back in June. I had to keep quiet about Riptide for several months. It nearly killed me. Thank goodness I’m buddies with Cat Grant, whose very sexy ONCE UPON A MARINE ( http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/once-marine) is also part of Riptide’s debut line up so we could talk to each other about it.
Now I’ve known Aleks for several years. We don’t live on the same continent, but we are part of the same community. A couple of years ago, when Amazon started “accidentally” pulling GBLT titles from its rankings, Aleks and I, along with several other key players, were at the forefront of the AmazonFail protest that used any and all of available media to bring this outrage to the world’s attention. Once Neil Gaiman picked up the thread, Twitter went postal and Amazon fixed their problem. (Of course, we’re still waiting for our apology, but…)
Aleks is always quick to share information, and call publishers on shoddy practices. He’s earned my respect and if he wants my short story, I’m honoured to share it.
What surprised me most about Riptide, is that even though SUCKS & BLOWS had already been through the editing process with its previous publisher, we then went through rounds and rounds of editing—three in all. I’d never had that kind of attention paid to a piece of writing. It was awesome. That’s when I met Rachel. Not only is she a terrific editor, but she’s a very nice person and really funny. The blurb she wrote for my story is every bit as funny as the story itself. (I refuse to say funnier, even if it is.)
But suddenly my real life grew wacky, including everything from getting kicked out of my home by the renovators, an old dog who needs to be carried up and down stairs—ow! my arthritic wrists, and a stint on Jury Duty waiting to be called to do a trial, and then getting rejected by the Crown Prosecutor. I stopped reading the posts from Riptide at that point. They were planning a lot of promotion for their debut books and I figured my short story wouldn’t really figure into their awesome plans.
That’s when I met Chris. I got a very nice, very supportive email that walked me through all the necessary pieces of promo required. She had me at nice. If she’d been mean, I would have reacted by being self-important and resistant. But she was so nice, that I immediately crumbled. I got all the missing material in on time, and still felt guilty they’d had to chase me. I’m just not a last-minute kinda gal.
In fact, I felt so guilty that when Aleks asked if I would consider writing another story for them, I immediately wrote them another story—this one approaching novella length. FEW ARE CHOSEN is about an apprentice warrior who encounters an apprentice wizard when each has been sent by their respective Orders to take down a nasty demon. At first they get in each other’s way, but after separate failed attempts, they realize they need to work together to succeed. Then they discover they have more in common than fighting demons, and share a tender moment. First kill leads to first kiss, as it so often does, and then to first… other things. Of course, there’s a surprise ending you didn’t see coming. You expect no less from me, right?
So check out the love story of a vampire and his dentist in SUCKS & BLOWS, coming from Riptide Publishing in October. Then watch for my new story, exclusive to Riptide, FEW ARE CHOSEN.
Thank you for reading.
Sucks & Blows will be released on October 30 and is now available for pre-sale at Riptide Publishing.
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