Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway – Object of Desire by Dal MacLean

EXCERPT

The smell hit him first, a thick, cloying blend of expensive perfume and corrupt, metallic fruit.

He saw Nick, hunched against a far wall, body shaking with silent grief, eyes closed.

Then he took in the rest.

An all-white bedroom—glamorous and totally impractical, designed like something from a magazine, so that every dot of color looked shocking. A painted wooden desk stood by the window, holding a silver laptop; the signature, light-green-blue of a Tiffany box; a stack of envelopes tied with a red cord; five little, glass, medical bottles lined up, with matching purple bars on their labels. A familiar light-blue dress lay draped over the arm of a padded armchair, a tiny tangle of lacy pink underwear on top.

White walls, furniture, carpet, bedding. Everything was absurdly neat and clean, save the most demanding splash of color—the huge stain which covered the fluffy duvet like crimson dye. A palette of shades of red, in fact, as if the pool had dried gradually from the outside, into the dark and clotted center.

Catriona lay on her side on top of it, in the middle of the wide bed, facing the doorway. She was naked but utterly sexless, her skin like bleached ash against the wet, red cloth. Her beautiful, blank profile, eyes decently shut at least, rested on the purity of her pillow.

Tom saw the guilty kitchen knife lying on the blood-pool beside the upturned palm of her right hand; the mangled, meaty churn of her inner wrists. Then, the dark hole, visible through black-blood-clotted ash-blonde hair, where her ear had been.  The shockingly recognizable auricle resting near her fingertips.

One of the paramedics called sharply, “Hey! You shouldn’t be in here, mate!” just as the uniformed police constable materialized behind Tom, to pull him, unresisting, back into the hallway and then, down the stairs. At the bottom, Tom slurred out his name and address, and the reason he was there. He didn’t sound like himself at all, he thought distantly, but the officer noted it all down.

Finally, she left him to perch on the pristine linen sofa in Catriona’s airy sitting room. And he found himself stupidly anxious not to crease the fabric or mark its snowy perfection.

He’d never been in this room before. In fact, he’d never been inside the house.

The door into the hallway lay wide open, allowing Tom to see the bustle of comings and goings in the hallway, as the procedures surrounding an unexpected death snapped into place. All things he’d heard recounted before, but never—actually—witnessed.

The first-response officer, out of his eyeline, was speaking to her radio. Someone—a man—shouted instructions from upstairs as one of the paramedics barreled past the open door and out of Tom’s vision, as if his urgency still had some point.

Movement, back and fore. Voices outside. Inside.  Tom forced desperate focus — made himself identify what was happening.  Who was who, as they passed.

First onto Tom’s little stage — a man he suspected to be the divisional pathologist, followed by a group of SOCO officers, silent and eerie in hooded white suits, ready to pick over the scene for evidence of anything that might turn out to be suspicious.

Then, less than a minute after they disappeared, two men, clearly plain-clothed police officers. They stood in front of the open sitting room doorway, pulling on those same white forensic suits and overshoes, and Tom was almost certain they’d be the advance Homicide Assessment Team, from whichever murder investigation unit happened to be on call. Tom didn’t recognize either of them—a dull, distant relief.

Part of him was riveted, because after having heard it described so often, casually and not, it felt unreal seeing everything actually happen, like a dramatic performance put on, specially for him. But as the two HAT officers moved out of Tom’s vision, another white-clad figure came in behind them, and as he passed the open sitting room door, he glanced in and caught sight of Tom.

The man stopped and blinked.

For a moment, Tom felt an audience’s shock at having been acknowledged, and he shifted self-consciously under the man’s startled stare. Then, as that stare turned to wide-eyed disbelief, Tom felt suddenly, horribly aware of how incongruous he must look. His golden tan, his glossy, pale-blond shoulder-length hair; his long body, clad in an on-trend brown suede shirt and perfectly-cut jeans; his obsessively precise grooming. A peacock, sitting at the edge of a tragedy.

It took whole seconds for Tom to understand that the man’s reaction wasn’t puzzlement; it was recognition. And finally, even under that disorientating, tightly drawn white hood, Tom recognized him in turn.

Each man stared at the other as if a monstrous apparition had manifested in front of them.

Des fucking Salt.

Through surging panic, Tom took in the man’s once-familiar, sharp features; his densely freckled skin, almost as white as the forensic hood concealing his wiry red hair. How the fuck hadn’t he recognized him? Was it just the oddness of that hood, framing Salt’s narrow face like a nun’s coif?

The relief Tom had felt just minutes before sneered at him now. Because…yes, Tom had known there was a small chance they’d be involved—of course he had—but how unlucky did he have to be?

His face felt scalding hot, his guts skittering with a kind of death-row anticipation. And, inevitably his gaze shot to the hallway behind Salt.

Because always, with DC Des Salt, came DI Will Foster.

Tom’s eyes fixed on that empty space like a mouse in front of a stoat. But nothing happened.

He snapped his attention back to Salt, but Salt had turned away and walked out of Tom’s field of vision.  But he could hear hushed voices, as Salt presumably asked the uniformed PC by thr staircase what the fuck Tom was doing there.

When Salt appeared again in the doorway, his expression had fixed into professional neutrality. He extracted a notebook from inside the opening of his forensic suit, pulled down his hood and walked in the room,

“Mr. Gray,” he said. It was stupidly shocking to hear his voice. Perhaps Tom had hoped it was all a lurid dream.

Then he registered, Mr. Gray. They were going to pretend they didn’t know each other, then. Fine by him. But he couldn’t help looking compulsively again toward the open doorway before he focused again on Salt.

“I’m DS Salt with Southwark and Peckham Murder Investigation Team.”

Southwark and Peckham. That was new at least. And so was the rank. He’d made Sergeant. Salt’s Northern Irish accent sounded as strong as it ever had, but Tom unwillingly noted tiny changes in him. New, fine lines between his ginger brows. His unfortunate moustache had gone, as had that shy, awkward niceness he’d exuded once, so out of place on a policeman.

“Don’t be alarmed, sir,” Salt went on blandly. “This is all routine procedure in a case like this.”

Of course it was. With all that blood.

Tom involuntarily squeezed closed his eyes, and the image was starkly there, like a high-res photograph dropping in behind his lids. He thought he would never stop seeing it.

His eyes sprang open.

That was what mattered. What lay upstairs. Not some soap opera from his past.

Sick with himself, he forced his attention back to Salt.

“I know,” he said.

Salt raised an eyebrow. “You told the officer that you’re here because Mr. Haining—Mr. Dominic Haining—requested you come to support him. When he found the body of his wife. Catriona Haining.”

Tom nodded, then said, “Yes.” Aloud, as if he were being recorded.

“And, what’s your relationship to Mr. and Mrs. Haining?” There was no one here to witness any recognition between them, but still, Salt’s tone remained that of a stranger.

“I—Mr…and Mrs. Haining own one of the modeling agencies I work with. Echo…it’s called.”

“This is Mrs. Haining’s home. Mr. Haining no longer lives here, is that correct?”

Tom tightened his jaw. “Yes.”

“You must be a…close friend as well as a client?” Salt began to write in his notebook. “For Mr. Haining to have called you here at a time like this.”

Tom’s mind darted around the question of how much total honesty could complicate things for Nick, but in the end all he said was, “Yes.”

Salt glanced up, brown eyes narrowed. And Tom was sure Salt must be making those damning connections in his head.

Tom and Nick Haining. Nick and Tom.

Nick—whose wife had just killed herself. Of all people to judge him, it had to be Des.

Blurb:

“Tom Gray is one of the world’s top models – an effortless object of desire. Self-contained, elusive and always in control, he’s accustomed to living life entirely on his own terms. But when Tom is implicated in the circumstances surrounding the gory death of his lover’s ex-wife, his world begins to spiral into chaos. Someone’s framing him. Someone’s stalking him. Will Foster is the only man Tom trusts to help him. But Tom brutally burned all bridges between them two years before, and Will paid a bitter price. As shocking secrets come to light, and more people begin to die, Tom desperately seeks answers among old crimes. But he finds his adversary always one step ahead. Somehow, Tom must persuade Will to help him find out who’s invading his life. Before all he values is taken from him.”

5-Year Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense – Anniversary Giveaway:

Click on image to purchase

Author Dal MacLean has graciously offered to provide one of our members a FREE, e-book in your choice of either: mobi, pub or pdf!

To enter the FREE drawing, please leave at least a one-word comment via Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Facebook group via the Excerpt link for Object of Desire.

The Winner will be announced on Wednesday, June 13th, 2018 @ 8pm EDTGood luck!

 

Learn more about author Dal MacLean, and check out her interview below.

click on image to go to Dal MacLean’s website

Q&A: OBJECT OF DESIRE BY DAL MACLEAN

Goodreads  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15408926.Dal_Maclean

Twitter: @MacleanDal – Dal Maclean

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/people/Dal-Maclean/100010371585020

Insta: dalmaclean

Publisher One Block Empire (an imprint of Blind Eye Books) www.blindeyebooks.com

Publisher Twitter: @blindeyebooks

Publisher Insta: @blindeyebooks

An Exclusive Interview with the Dynamic, Gay Mystery/Thriller Author, Gregory Ashe

(Click on book cover for purchase link)

Gregory, thank you so much for taking some time out of your very busy schedule to answer a few brief questions about yourself, and your writing for the members of the Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction Facebook group. 

Thank you so much for inviting me to do this. It’s an honor to be asked to participate.

Author Gregory Ashe

JM – Where were you born, and where do you live now?  

GA – I’m a St. Louis native. Although I moved away for college, grad school, and then work, I came back a few years ago. I love the city; it’s great for so many reasons: the culture, the food, the history, the parks, etc. Among other things, I was surprised on my return to find that St. Louis has a strong LGBTQ+ community. It also has a strong writing community. I feel like I lucked out!

JM – Without getting too personal, can you share a little about your life with us?

GA – Oh boy. The sad truth is that I’m very boring. I work full time (I teach at a local high school), and in my free time, I try to read and write as much as possible. I also do exciting things like laundry, grocery shopping, and home repair (I’m still learning a lot about this last one). Every once in a while, I still try dating. I used to travel a fair amount for research, but now my adventures are limited to summer vacation. I’m still trying to figure out where I might go this year!

JM – Do you write full-time, have a 9-5, or are you a Lottery Winner?

GA – Writing full time sounds like a dream job; maybe one day I’ll get there. Right now, I’m lucky that I love the work I do teaching high school (my students might not be quite as enthusiastic, however).

JM – How long have you been writing/publishing?

GA – Like many writers, I imagine, I’ve been writing and telling stories for about as long as I can imagine. My siblings were fairly good sports about it until puberty hit! For a long time, I thought of myself as a writer even though I wasn’t actually writing anything. A series of experiences changed my mind about that, and about ten years ago, I started writing regularly.

JM – Do you write in other genres besides gay mystery/thriller/suspense?

GA – I’ve written in high fantasy, urban fantasy, and gay mystery/thriller. I also have an abandoned sci-fi (cyberpunk) novel that I still intend on finishing one day.

JM – Have you always self-published your writing? I ask because your finished product is of great quality, which isn’t always the case in this hyper-insane, electronic publishing market.

GA – That’s an incredibly generous thing to say. Thank you. I have always self-published. I’ve had a few near-misses with traditional publishers, but nothing has ever landed for me. That being said, I think it’s fair to acknowledge that my work has improved over the last ten years. I keep my older books available for sale, but I hope readers will recognize that my self-publishing skills and my writing craft have grown. My advice is always to preview first; I feel like that gives a fair idea of what you’re buying.

JM – You are a new author for me, having discovered your gay mystery/suspense novel, Pretty Pretty Boys, shortly after its release in Nov. 2017. I quickly snapped up the second novel in the series, Transposition, and have pre-ordered the third, The Paternity Case. Is Hazard/Somer’s your first series? How did the characters come about for you?  

GA – Again, thank you for the very kind words. I have–boy, let me think–I think, I have five series that I’ve previously published. No, six. Two of them are m/m paranormal (no were-creatures or vampires): Hollow Folk and The Sophistries of June. A third (Witte & Co. Investigations) is historical fantasy with a strong m/m romance line (although not the main plot). See above for my caveat about my growth as a writer and self-publisher.

Your question about how Hazard and Somers came about is a good one. I know that many authors say that they’re not sure where an idea came from; it just popped into their head. That’s happened to me before, but it wasn’t the case with this series. I remember vividly when I first heard the story of Jesse Valencia, a student at Mizzou who was killed by a closeted cop in order to cover up their relationship (http://www.cnn.com/2005/LAW/05/23/rios/). That was the seed for this story; Hazard and Somers grew out of it. (JM–I know this story well; how ironic – I have a drafted plot idea influenced by this story in a folder (along with some research) that I wrote in 2011 – great writing minds think alike, lol!).

I have a longer account of how the piece developed, including a few surprising twists along the way, that I’ll be sharing with subscribers to my email list when Paternity Case launches at the beginning of April. I hope anyone interested will sign up!

JM – I so enjoyed Pretty Pretty Boys; the push and pull, yin and yang, rather complicated relationship between MCs, Emery (Hazard) Hazard and John-Henry Somerset (Somers), both detectives in the small-town Wahredua Police Department make the novels work! At the beginning of the series, Somers has remained in Wahredua, MI his entire life; Hazard has just returned to his hometown in disgrace upon getting fired from his former detective’s job in big city, USA; What a set up! So much history to explore from page one! How many books in the series are you planning?   

GA – That’s a lovely description of the dynamic I’ve attempted to create in the books; thank you. The short answer to your question is: I don’t know yet. The slightly longer answer: I’m finishing a six-book arc that will resolve the back-and-forth of Hazard and Somers’s relationship, as well as one (maybe two) of the major recurring antagonists. However, I’ve already planned a second arc for the two detectives, and I plan on writing that second set of novels if there’s still interest.

JM – You have been successful in creating two strong-willed characters that are enemies as much as they are friends; yet their unique personalities make it work between them. The novels have complex, twisty mysteries, and yet romantic undertones (not giving anything away, here!) Have you always been a romantic?

GA – Ha! Yes. A lot of that has to do with the fact that I came out relatively late in life, and so my experience with romance is still, to some degree, mediated and second-hand. Now, I spend a lot of my time convincing myself that I’m a rigorous intellectual, but the reality is that my brain turns mushy whenever I meet a nice guy. Although, (maybe this is too much honesty) it’s been a long time since I met a nice guy . . .

 JM – On behalf of the Facebook Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction Group, thank you for giving us a little of your time answering questions of the genre. Can you share a little about your current release and/or WIP?

 GA – Jon, thank you for making me feel so welcome in this community. I really appreciate it. I’ve got two WIP right now: I’m finishing revisions on Paternity Case, which releases April 6, 2018, and I’m writing Guilt by Association (book four of the Hazard and Somerset mysteries). Guilt by Association takes Hazard and Somers to the next level: they are facing a tougher mystery, their work lives are compromised when the mayor hands-off their case, and they find their relationship hurtling towards . . . well, that’s the problem. Neither of them knows. Yet. I’m looking forward to releasing this book in early summer.

Thanks again, Jon, for having me here!

 Do you have questions for Gregory Ashe? Please feel free to contact him via email: (ashegr@gmail.com) or via his website: www.gregoryashe.com

John Inman Discusses His Lammy Nominated Gay Horror novel, The Boys On The Mountain

Author John Inman answers a few questions about his gay horror, ghost story, The Boys On The Mountain
Blurb:

Jim Brandon has a new house, and boy, is it a pip. Built high on the side of the San Diego mountains by a legendary B-movie actor of the 1930s, Nigel Letters, the house is not only gorgeous, but supposedly haunted. As a writer of horror novels, Jim couldn’t be happier.

But after a string of ghostly events sets Jim’s teeth on edge and scares the bejesus out of his dog, Jim begins to dig into the house’s history. What he finds is enough to creep out anybody. Even Jim. It seems long dead Nigel Letters had a few nasty habits back in his day. And unhappily for Jim, the old bastard still has some tricks up his sleeve.

As Jim welcomes his ex, Michael, and a bevy of old friends for a two-week visit to help christen the new house, he soon realizes his old friends aren’t the only visitors who have come to call.

1.  How did you come up with the idea for THE BOYS ON THE MOUNTAIN?
I once rented a home in San Diego that was built by character actor Victor Buono.  He reportedly built it for his parents, but I can’t verify that.  Anyway, it was a great old house.  Beautiful.  Every closet was a walk-in.  The fireplace in the living room was gorgeous.  Rounded ceilings, the whole nine yards.  It even had a teeny tiny door in the back for the days when milk was delivered to the house by the neighborhood milkman. All the time I lived there I used to wonder about the many people who had lived in the house before me, whether they left traces of themselves behind.  While I never saw a ghost in the house, I did manage to creep myself out more than once.  Imagining sounds and all that.  It was during this time that I got the idea of writing a book about an actor who was also a serial killer, natch.  Living in a spooky old house built by an old-time actor, why wouldn’t I?  While I’m pretty sure Victor Buono never offed anybody, the simple fact that I was living in a place with ties to Hollywood, however tenuous, was enough to get the old creative juices flowing.
BoysontheMountain[The]FS
 By the time I had finished writing the book, there was so much sex and violence in the story, I never really thought I would be able to find a publisher for it.  Of course, at that time in my life, I wasn’t having much luck finding a publisher for anything else I wrote either.  Then along came Dreamspinner Press.  While DSP bought this story almost five years ago, it was always made clear that they wouldn’t release it until the new imprint (which later became DSP Publications) came online, since BOYS isn’t actually a romance, as all DSP books are required to be.  And I have to say, they were right.  DSP Publications turned out to be a perfect home for it.  I couldn’t be happier.
2.  Were you surprised when BOYS was declared a finalist at the Lambda Literary Awards?
“Surprised” doesn’t quite cover it.  I was flabbergasted.  The fact that Elizabeth North had enough faith in the book to submit it to the Lammies at all was a gift I’ll never forget.  Then to actually come up a finalist — geez, I couldn’t believe it.  Out of almost a hundred books in my genre?  It was incredible.  My husband and I have our tickets by the way.  Airfare to NYC, hotel rooms booked, we’re ready to go. We wouldn’t miss the awards show for the world.  I know winning is a long shot, but I figure I have as much chance as anyone else.  And it really is true when people say they are just honored to be among the finalists.  That’s exactly how I feel.  I know what I’m up against.  I’ve read a couple of the books in my category of SciFi/Horror and they are damn good books.  It really is humbling to find BOYS standing there among them.
3.  Okay, I guess I have to ask this.  Do you believe in ghosts?
LOL.  I knew that was going to come up.  Okay, I’ll tell you the truth.  Uh…..yes.  I do.  When I was a kid I saw my grandfather, whom I was extremely close to, standing at the foot of my bed in the middle of the night a week after he passed away.  Later in my life, when I was in my early twenties, my brother was killed in a freak accident.  A horrible experience.  My mother had a nervous breakdown over it.  Anyway, one night I dreamed of him.  He was sitting on the bank of a lake fishing, just like we used to do when he was alive.  In the middle of the dream, he turned to me and said,  “Tell mom I’m happy.”  I still get goosebumps thinking about it.  So after I hemmed and hawed over it for a while, afraid maybe relaying my dream would make my mom suffer even more, I finally built up my courage and told her what my brother had said.  And you know what?  It helped her.  I know both those instances might have come about because of wishful thinking on my part.  Or simple imagination.  Or whatever.  But they still ring true in my mind.  So yes, I have to say I do believe in ghosts.

Interviewing Meg Perry, Author of the Jamie Brodie Mysteries

Interview by Matthew G Moore

On behalf of the Facebook Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction Group, thank you for giving us a little of your time today, answering questions fans of the genre really want to know.

Thank you for inviting me!

Can you share where do you live?

I live in Daytona Beach, Florida, on a barrier island that we call “the beachside,” two blocks from the ocean.

JamieBrodie1A

Without getting too personal, can you share a little about your home life?

There’s not much to tell! I’m contentedly single. I live with Wesley and Ace, two 17-pound boy cats, and I have a small vegetable garden.

Writers rarely like to toot their own horns; seriously! What would you say is your greatest accomplishment?

A friend, who is himself a librarian and gay, said to me (after reading Psyched to Death), “How did you get into my head?” I’m delighted to know that Jamie is resonating with his real-life counterparts.

What inspires and challenges you most in writing? And can you describe your writing process?

Inspiration comes from my job. Most of Jamie’s experiences as a librarian have happened to me and my co-workers. My primary challenge is writing the mystery aspect of the books. Finding the right blend of believability and surprise is tricky. In terms of my writing process – each book begins with an idea. Sometimes it’s my idea, sometimes someone else suggests something. My archaeologist friend, Mary, said, “You should write a mystery about bog bodies.” That became Stoned to Death. I was watching Ancient Aliens one night, laughing hysterically, and thought, “I have to put this in a book.” That became Encountered to Death. Once I have the idea, I start figuring out the plot. Sometimes I know how I want that to unfold; sometimes I need to brainstorm with my writing group. Once I have the plot figured out and write the first draft, I present it in segments to the group and hammer out the changes that need to be made. I couldn’t do what I do without my group.

You’ve probably answered this question a hundred times, but please indulge our readers (and fellow writers): Do you fly by the seat of your pants when writing or plot out your storylines?

I’m a seat-of-the-pantser. Sometimes I know how the book will end when I start writing, but more often I don’t. There are times – especially for the longer books – when I get deep into a story then have to create a timeline for myself, to make sure I don’t lose any threads along the way.

You currently have The Jamie Brodie mysteries that you’ve been writing since Cited to Death in 2012 and you’re about to release book twelve. That’s a lot of books within four years; how do you sustain serialized, continuing characters?

The story of Jamie’s life has unfolded organically over the time I’ve been writing the books. He’s done things that I never expected him to do, and he’s changed by each of the experiences he’s had. It sounds a little crazy to say that Jamie tells me where he’s going, but that’s the way it feels sometimes.

JamieBrodie2A

What was your inspiration for the incredible Jamie Brodie?

Jamie and his family developed out of characters that I’d created in my head as a kid, when I amused myself by making up my own stories. (Some children have imaginary friends. I had a whole town.) When I decided to start writing about “a librarian who solves crimes using research,” Jamie was a good fit. He’s the librarian I’d like to be.

I’m also incredibly interested to know why you gave him such acute asthma? His co-workers and his boss are very understanding and agreeable when he seems to keep being rushed to the hospital. Books always paint academics as backstabbing, jealous, drama queens that always attempt to one up one another. Your characters seem to be nice and supportive of each other. Are people that understanding and as nice as you write them in your field?  

Every hero needs a vulnerability. Jamie is an outstanding athlete, so I wanted to give him something that could bring him to full stop physically. His asthma is an aggravation that he can’t ignore, but it doesn’t hinder him when it’s not acute. It also helps to define his ambivalent relationship with Los Angeles, a place he never intended to live and which has made his asthma much worse. As far as backstabbing, drama queenish academics – that’s sometimes true for university professors, but not librarians! Academic librarians are the most congenial, collegiate group of people you’ll ever meet.

One of my favorite scenes from the books was when Jamie and Liz are at the Library conference and they begin to name off what kind of librarian people are based on their body type and clothing. How accurate is that?

That’s as accurate as a generalization ever gets. 😀 Talked to Death and the characters therein were totally inspired by the multiple Florida Library Association conferences I’ve attended over the years. The librarian hierarchy is a real thing, too.

Have you ever had to deal with homophobia when it comes to your books, and if so, what form has it taken?

No, other than from one reviewer who was shocked – shocked – that there was discussion of gay sex in that particular book. (Did she not read the blurb?) However, my right-wing relatives do not know what I do in my spare time, and would not be pleased if they did. (None of them are on Facebook.)

 

And a follow up, as a female writer writing a protagonist that is a gay man have you ever dealt with discrimination from the gay community for writing a gay protagonist?

No – although I’m not sure how much of a following I have within the gay community. My friends who are gay tell me that I’m getting it right, so I hope that helps.

What got you into reading and writing gay mysteries?

Initially, it was thanks to following Amazon’s recommendations. I’d been reading a lot of urban fantasy, and J.L. Langley’s With or Without books appeared on my recommendation list. Gay werewolves? Whaaaaat? 😀 But once I started buying those, gay mystery began popping up on my rec list. The first I ever read was The Hell You Say, the third of Josh Lanyon’s Adrien English series. I was hooked. In terms of writing – when I began the Jamie Brodie books, I already knew Jamie was gay, in the same way I already knew exactly what he looked like and that he was raised by his dad and grandfather.

Who have your role models as an author been? And what books are currently on your reading list?

One role model is Anthony Bidulka. I’m re-reading his Russell Quant mysteries now. Jamie’s large, close group of friends and family that grow and change along with him over the course of the series is similar to Russell’s. Another role model is Neil Plakcy, who showed me that it was possible to live in Florida but set your books in an exotic location thousands of miles away and make it work! (As he does SO well.) I also admire Richard Stevenson’s Donald Strachey series. Donald and Timmy’s long, happy relationship gives me hope for Pete and Jamie. 😀 Next on my TBR pile is Cheap as Beasts by Jon Wilson. He’ll be guest posting on my blog in May.

JamieBrodie3

Last two questions; can you share with us a little about your current release, Filmed to Death, and/or Work In Progress?

Filmed to Death, which was released April 29, finds Jamie getting tangled up with Hollywood. A has-been actor, working on a TV pilot meant to be his big comeback, is found dead in his pool by Abby Glenn, Kevin Brodie’s ex-girlfriend. Kevin can’t work the case because Abby is involved, so Jon Eckhoff asks Jamie to help him sort out the motive, which may be related to the script of the TV pilot.

The work in progress is tentatively titled Landscaped to Death, although that might change. Jamie and Pete’s next-door neighbors haven’t been heard from in several weeks – then a body turns up in their house, sniffed out by Jamie and Pete’s dog. It’s hard to say more without giving too much away. This book will be released in November.

And where can readers buy your books?

Here, at my Amazon author page: http://goo.gl/D9VjhT

Here, at my Smashwords page: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/MegPerry2

Here, at the Createspace store (print books): https://www.createspace.com/

I also post free short stories on my blog: http://megperrybooks.wordpress.com/

And I create “soundtracks” for each book, imagining what songs would play in a particular scene if the book ever became a movie. The soundtracks appear on my Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/JamieBrodieMysteries

An Interview with the Iconic Donald Strachey Creator, Writer Richard Stevenson

Richard Stevenson Interview by Matthew Moore.

On behalf of the Facebook Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction Group, thank you for giving us a little of your time today, answering questions fans of the genre really want to know.

Where do you live?

Mostly I live in Becket, Mass., a hill town in the Berkshires. Joe Wheaton and I have a great converted barn that luckily somebody else went broke converting. Three months out of most years, including this one, we live in Bangkok, Thailand. We’re in Bangkok now, until April 12. We are crazy about this place and now have a lot of friends here, Farang and Thai. It’s a perfect way to escape a chunk of the New England winter. (See THE 38 MILLION DOLLAR SMILE, which is set here.)

DeathTricks

Writers rarely like to toot their own horns; seriously! What would you say is your greatest accomplishment?

My greatest accomplishment as a writer was the day in 1980 when I sat down with a pack of Merits and wrote the first page of DEATH TRICK, the first Strachey book. I knew I was onto something and I was right. I wrote it in about eight weeks in a nicotine haze. (I quit smoking after delivering the manuscript of ICE BLUES in July, 1984.)

Continue reading

Part 2 – Interview with Gay Media and Literary Historian, Drewey Wayne Gunn

Part 2 of the interview by Matthew Moore and Jon Michaelsen.

Wayne, thank you so much for agreeing to additional questions compiled by fellow member & super fan Matt Moore and I for the Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction Facebook group. We had more than the standard ten questions for you, so thank you for agreeing to a two-part interview!

MM – What authors do you believe brought gay mysteries to mainstream audiences and away from the explicit pulps of the 50s and 60s?   

DWG – By “mainstream” I take it you mean both gay and straight readers. I wish sales figures were available for Rodney Garland’s The Heart in Exile. It did well enough for there to be both U.K. and U.S. editions, and it went into paperback. However, it was not marketed as a gay mystery; rather it was advertised as an expose of the homosexual underground in London. Yet it is the prototype for what was to come. Never mind that the victim kills himself, he is still murdered, and the psychiatrist-turned-sleuth works to unmask the villain. The novel has recently been reissued by Valancourt Books. It is a must read for anyone interested in the history of the gay mystery.

WayneGunnCurrent_Photo by Alex Amador
Photo by Alex Amador

George Baxt’s A Queer Kind of Death was the first gay murder mystery published by a mainline press aimed at a mass audience. It launched Baxt’s career. There were two more books in the series (none of them, by the way, marketed as Pharoah Love mysteries at the time), and he went on to gather a following for his celebrity mysteries, many of which had gay characters. Then came Hansen’s Fadeout in 1970.

Continue reading