Sunday, February 28, 2010

Why Would Anyone Pay More for a Used Book on Amazon?

This is just another quick post about something I saw on Amazon this weekend. The problem is I don't understand it. Someone on Amazon is selling a few of my used books for almost three times the amount of what a new paperback costs. A new paperback of AMERICAN STAR retails for $12.99, and someone is selling a used version for $35.40. And they are doing this with a few other books, too.

Now, if someone can do this and make money on it, God bless them. But it's not something I would do. And just so readers understand, writers don't get a penny from used book sales. Personally, I have nothing to do with the way used books on amazon are priced and I'd hate to think anyone out there thought I did. Just wanted to clear this up. One customer recently wrote a review on amazon for one of my books slamming the pricing (grin). It was more like a letter to amazon than a book review, which is fine. She/he vented and I'm glad they did. But I also want readers to know I have no control over how books are priced. I wish I did, but I don't.

But I can warn you when I see something a little weird about pricing. So, if you're looking to buy a paperback of one of my books, please be careful and check out the prices so you don't wind up paying more than you should for a used book when you could have purchased a new book at a fraction of the cost.

And, if anyone can please tell me why a used book would be more than a new book, I'd love to hear an explanation.

LOVING DAYLIGHT from the "Escape with Romance Collection" on HSN is on Sale


A quick post about LOVING DAYLIGHT, by Malia Sutton. This isn't just another ordinary romance about vampires. It has a strong male/male subplot for people who like reading m/m fiction, it's set in one of my favorite places in the world, Mt. Desert Island, Maine, and it's filled with love and romance all the way around.


And right now, as a special offer, it's being sold as an e-book for only 99 cents over at ravenousromance.com. http://www.ravenousromance.com/fantastica/loving-daylight.php?keyword=loving+daylight


This book, in print, has been a best seller as part of the "Escape with Romance Collection" on The Home Shopping Network. And it's being sold separately now as an e-book at ravenous, or on amazon.com as a print book.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Book Excerpt: THE WAY WE ALMOST WERE


Here's an excerpt from THE WAY WE ALMOST WERE. This is from the beginning of the book, where the main character is going through a typical day at work. Only his work isn't typical at all. He's one of the stars of a bawdy TV reality show, where he does idiotic stunts and pranks, like skateboarding over a hot dog vendor in Times Square.

Excerpt:

When Mikey stood on his mark and shouted, “Action,” Allan became Acer. He bobbed up and down for a few minutes, joking around with the other actor, acting as if he’d just returned from a drunken frat house party. His goal was too look as stupid as possible, and to show that he was willing to do any prank they dared him to do.

Mikey began to explain the scene with his deep announcer’s voice. Acer and the actor mounted the skateboards, went to the top of one ramp, and then started racing downward toward the other wooden ramp in front of the pretzel vendor and the monkey. They remained at a controlled equal distance until the last minute, and then Acer slowed down on purpose. When they reached the pretzel cart, the vendor jumped back and the poor monkey wrapped his arms around the vendor’s neck and screamed. Acer ducked and spread his arms out to maintain his balance. The stocky guy gained a five foot lead on Acer, made the leap first, and fell into the middle of the vat of mustard.

A second later, with a large group of people watching everything from the street, Acer was soaring over the pretzel cart and into the vat of mustard. The stocky actor, by then, was covered with yellow goop from head to toe. When Acer landed next to him, he wrapped his arms around the guy’s shoulders and his legs around the guy’s waist. The camera followed them; they got a good shot of the stocky guy placing his hand on Acer’s ass. It looked accidental and innocent.

The actor shouted, “Dude, I just grabbed your butt. Get the fuck off me.” Then he pushed Acer back into the mustard and laughed. The people on the street watching the scene laughed even harder. Then Acer and the actor pretended they couldn’t get their balance in the vat of mustard and continued groping each other by accident. Allan fell and pressed his check against the actor’s penis; the actor bucked his hips on purpose and laughed about it. Allan knew this would be one of the bawdier scenes they’d done.

When the scene was almost over, a couple of assistants ran to the mustard vat and helped Acer and the actor climb out. When they were on the sidewalk, covered in yellow mustard from head to toe, Mikey ran over and shouted, “Okay guys, hose them down now.”

Acer’s eyes opened wide. He looked at the other actor and shrugged his shoulders. As far as he’d been told, the scene should have been over after they’d fallen into the vat of mustard. Acer looked back at Mikey and tipped his head to the side.

Acer shouted, “What’s up?”

Mikey smiled and said, “Surprise,” and then shouted, “Hose them down now, dude.”

The machine next to the pretzel vendor’s cart was a power washer. The pretzel vendor grabbed the hose and switched it on. Then he pointed it at Acer and the actor and started spraying them. The monkey on his shoulder pointed and screamed. The people on the street held their stomachs and roared. The hose was far enough away from Acer and the actor to cause any damage to them, but it was still strong enough to push Acer into the arms of the other actor. Acer didn’t have time to think. He reached down and covered his crotch with his hands while the other actor held him in place. If he hadn’t held his crotch, the power washer would have knocked his dick out of the thong. It looked like he was bending over and the other actor was trying to mount him. The hose went up and down, washing all the mustard off their bodies. And the black ski mask became so water-logged Acer had trouble breathing.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Michael Nava Running for Judge in San Fran...


I'm not very political...not often that is (big grin). But when I see someone running for office that I think is in tune with my beliefs, I think it's important to support them. Michael Nava is an openly gay writer who is running for judge in San Francisco. I'm posting information below from his web site, and links to other sources of information about him. Even though many of us don't live in the San Francisco area, I think it's important to support LGBT candidates everywhere, especially now that we're all linked through social networking and the Internet.



From Web Site: http://navaforjudge.com/



For 28 years, I have dedicated my legal career to achieving a fairer and more representative legal system. My deep experience in the law and deep respect for our legal system brought me to work for Supreme Court Justice Carlos R. Moreno as a Supreme Court attorney, where I deal with complex legal issues in cases of statewide significance on the country’s most active and well-respected courts.




My commitment to public service, desire to help create a system that works for all people, and my work as an advocate for diversity in the legal profession and the courts inspired my decision to run for San Francisco Superior Court Judge in June of 2010.

I hope you will join my campaign and continue to visit our website for updates on how you can get involved.


From Facebook: Crime novelist Michael Nava, an openly gay staff attorney for California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno, has spent the last four years patiently waiting for an appointment to an appellate court seat. But so far Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has passed him over each time a vacancy has arisen on San Francisco's 1st District Court of Appeal.




Thursday, February 18, 2010

Link to a Great Post about Johnny Weir and His Views on Wearing Real Fur


I've linked to my buddy Ryan's blog in the past, mainly because he has a talent for finding interesting things that seem to always question what's right and what's wrong. And when he wrote this post, I had to link to it. It's about Johnny Weir, and his views about wearing real fur. http://aguyinlove.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

American Idol, American Star, and an Unusual Review


When AMERICAN STAR was first released, there was an unusual review. Oddly, this review picked up all the funny elements of the novel I was trying to portray, only the reviewer didn't fully understand this. And I can't blame her for my lack of explaining the book. I think she was expecting a sweet, tender romance and instead she got slammed with a satirical look what might happen behind the scenes of a pop culture reality show like American Idol. So in order to avoid anymore reader misunderstandings about AMERICAN STAR, I posted an author's note on the publisher's web site.

Author's Note: AMERICAN STAR is, and was always supposed to be, an adult, satirical look at what might go on behind the scenes of a TV reality show like "American Idol". It's both funny and campy (there's a difference). It's also very erotic, in the true sense of classic gay erotic fiction, and there is romance. But not the kind of romance that will leave you with wet eyes like some of my other romances. This is more of a modern romance, between very strong gay men, who do not apologize for their needs and the way they live their lives. And, many of the scenes are based on my own personal experiences as an openly gay man. I had fun writing this book, laughing at myself and with the characters.

Monday, February 15, 2010

John Mayer Makes Anti-Gay Comment

This about as bad as you can get as far as verbal gay bashing goes. I'm posting the entire piece below instead of just linking to it. I highlighted the worst part in red. Please tweet the bottom comment, then facebook it and post it wherever you think someone will see it.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation is making using of social media as it asks people to tweet John Mayer to ask that he apologize for using the anti-gay F-word in a segment of his Playboy interview that spread across the Web on Thursday.

“We hope the intent behind his use of the F-word was not malicious,” GLAAD’s Entertainment Media Manager Jonathan Rosales wrote in the blog Thursday. “Mayer should be more cognizant of the impact his casual use of both slurs can have.”

In the Playboy interview, Mayer was asked if he had ever kissed a guy.
He responded: “The only man I’ve kissed is Perez Hilton. It was New Year’s Eve and I decided to go out and destroy myself. I was dating Jessica [Simpson] at the time, and I remember seeing Perez Hilton flitting about this club and acting as though he had just invented homosexuality. All of a sudden I thought, I can outgay this guy right now. I grabbed him and gave him the dirtiest, tongue-iest kiss I have ever put on anybody—almost as if I hated fags. I don’t think my mouth was even touching when I was tongue kissing him, that’s how disgusting this kiss was. I’m a little ashamed. I think it lasted about half a minute. I really think it went on too long.”


While Mayer apologized for his use of a racial slur using his Twitter account to spread the message. He did not specifically apologize for using the gay slur.
GLADD is asking people to copy and paste this tweet:


“Ask @johncmayer to apologize for using an anti-gay slur in his @Playboy interview http://bit.ly/dsVcAj #LGBT”

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentine's Day Release: THE WAY WE ALMOST WERE



Allan Nottingham has a huge secret and it has nothing to do with the fact that he's gay. Though he wants to become a respected political journalist, he actually makes an excellent living by performing idiotic stunts on a trashy but popular TV show called The Naughty Boiz. He'll do anything from skateboarding into a huge vat of mustard to being a human sling shot, wearing nothing but a skimpy leopard thong and a black ski mask to conceal his true identity.


Allan's handsome, hunky boss, Mikey Phoenix, the outrageous producer of The Naughty Boiz and Allan's best friend, is always there to watch out for him. It's an unusual friendship between a gay man and a straight man, because Mikey is always full of surprises.


But Mikey's wonderful friendship isn't enough for Allan, and when Allan accidentally runs into his first lover from college, Jacob Steinman, all of the old feelings of love he thought he'd laid to rest come rushing back. And Allan embarks on a full fledged campaign to win Jacob's love, going to lengths he'd never do for another man, in spite of all the differences that kept them apart in the first place.


It doesn't take long for Allan to see that Jacob hasn't changed. Though Jacob is the most talented man Allan has ever known, Jacob is still only interested in having fun and ignoring all the political and social issues that are important to Allan. And even though Allan works hard to ignore Jacob's political apathy, not the mention the fact that Jacob is unwilling to announce to the world that he's openly gay because it might hurt his high profile career, all this eventually takes its toll on their relationship.


Is the love and romance between Allan and Jacob will be enough to sustain them? As these exciting characters grow and begin to embrace their true passions, discovering the things in life that matter to them the most, what ultimately happens clearly defines the way they almost were.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

More About VALLEY OF THE DUDES


In this M/M adaptation of the classic novel Valley of the Dolls, an innocent young man named Rush Goodwin leaves behind his family, his longtime boyfriend, and the safety of his small New England town to find a new life that's filled with glamour and excitement in New York City. Though he's not sure exactly what he wants in life, he's willing to take a few daring chances along the way to find out.It doesn't take long for him to make two new best friends, Cody and Anderson, who are just as young an innocent as he is when the story begins. The only difference between them and Rush is that they both have faithful partners and Rush is alone in New York.


But that doesn't last long. When Rush meets his new boss, handsome Lance Sharp, it's love at first sight and the beginning of a turbulent relationship that is rarely without conflict.While Rush and his friends are all moving forward and climbing their respective ladders of success, they each learn, in different ways, that nothing in life is perfect. Especially not the fame and fortune they thought they all wanted. And in order to deal with the stress of success, they all turn to drugs for comfort. And in time, this leads them all on a downward spiral that ruins their relationships and ultimately threatens their lives.


In the end, after suffering painful disappointments and serious setbacks that almost ruin him, Rush learns the true meaning of what life is all about for a gay man of his generation. And he does this without drugs and fame and fortune, with the help of true love and the one goal he never expected he could reach.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Alyson Books: They Kept the LGBT Community Connected


Before there was an Internet, there were small publishers within the still newly established LGBT community. One of them was Alyson Books. They were located up in Boston, on Plympton Street, and they were revolutionary in a sense because they started publishing lgbt themed children's books in l990, Alyson Wonderland. This was new and it was a risky thing to do back then.


But they did it anyway. And they gave lgbt authors a voice, and they catered to the lgbt community in a way that hadn't been done before. Alyson is very special to me. I read my first gay novel, published by Alyson Books. I bought it in a small news shop, on the corner of Seventh Ave. South and Christopher Street in The Village. They published my first short story back in the late nineties. I've always been proud to be in their books. And now they recently released my book, AN OFFICER AND HIS GENTLEMAN in partnership with ravenous romance. This is a traditional print book and it can be purchased in bookstores or directly at the Alyson web site here: http://www.alyson.com/9781593501648.html


There was a time when publishers like Alyson kept gay men and women connected, through good books, both fiction and non-fiction. It's hard to believe for people under thirty that things were so different then. But there was a time, not too long ago, when books were the only things gay people had to keep them going.


Monday, February 8, 2010

Excerpt from VALLEY OF THE DUDES


Below is another excerpt from VALLEY OF THE DUDES sold on www.ravenousromance.com. In this one, the two main characters have just met and are walking through the streets of New York and they pass a book shop. In the window of the book shop, there's a book about gay marriage. Of course this is just their initial reaction to the concept of marriage. There's a lot more to come in the book as both characters mature.


On the next block, they passed a small bookstore and Rush smiled when he looked into the window. There was a book on display, all by itself, with two attractive young men wearing white suits on the cover. The men were standing before an alter, staring into each others eyes, exchanging wedding vows. And there were two gold wedding bands, intertwined, at the top of the book cover. The title of the book was The Glass Ceiling.


Rush sighed and said, “I’m not very political and I’ve never been an activist about anything, but it’s nice to see books like that in the front windows of book shops, on display for the entire world to see. I think I’m going to come back and buy that book this week.”


Lance placed his palm on Rush’s back and said, “I’m not political either, but it is nice to see. Guys like us have come a long way.”


“Have you ever thought about getting married?” Rush asked. His voice was soft and light. He wasn’t probing for information. It was just a general question.


“I’m afraid not,” Lance said. “I like being single. I’m very happy with my life, and I know what I want. I don’t see myself ever settling down with one man like those guys on the cover of that book.”


Rush smiled. “You’re lucky. I wish I could be as certain about my life as you are about yours. I don’t have the slightest clue what I want or where I want to be.”


Lance lowered his hand and rested it on Rush’s hip. He pulled Rush into his side and asked, “Is there someone else back in New England?”

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Nor'easter 2010


This is what it looked like at the end of my driveway today. And it still hadn't stopped snowing at that point. Altogether, we reached about eighteen inches in New Hope, and Philadelphia, and points an hour south, reached well over two feet.


I have a long driveway. And I still refuse to pay anyone to plow me out. It's the principle. Plus I like the snow and shoveling is part of the fun.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Astatalk.com...Athena99

Update 12/5/10: Since I wrote this post and others like it, I've learned a great deal from readers and I hope to continue to learn. I'm seeing a different POV that I never expected to see, and the comment thread for this post has presented some interesting discussion. I hope it continues, too. I'm now seeing there are two differents sides to *every* story. If I were to have written this same blog post today, I don't think I would have been so harsh, and I apologize to anyone who may have been offended.


Every once in a while I like to post about book pirates. The worst of the worst is a place called http://www.astatalk.com/. They abuse writers, steal their work, and absolutely ignore all requests to take the books down.

But it's the people who use these sites that interest me. What kind of a person steals, knowing they are stealing, and thinks they can get away with it. I've already exposed a few of them. And now I'm going after someone who goes by the name "Athena99"

Athena99 thinks they can't be exposed and that their real identity is private. They think they can hide behind the anonymity of the Internet forever. But there are ways to track people like Athena99 down, as there are ways to track other's down.

At the top of this post, you'll find Athena99's astatalk photo. People who steal books don't seem to understand it's punishable by law, with fines and/or imprisonment.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

New Book Cover: The Way We Almost Were


THE WAY WE ALMOST WERE hasn't been released yet, but I just saw a copy of the new cover and wanted to post something. In this book, I deal with several subjects. And "Allan," one of the main characters, is only a little like the Streisand character was in the original story. In my story he's much more polar and complicated. During the day he works as an anonymous (but famous) stunt man on a well known cable TV show doing weird frat house stunts, and in his spare time he's a serious, respected journalist who is interested in lgbt equal rights and other important issues.