Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Last Train to Clarkdale

This story released last Saturday and is available this week on JMS's site at the discount all new releases enjoy for a week. You might want to grab it while you can. Here is the blurb and the evocative cover.  Here is the link: http://www.jms-books.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=29_94&products_id=2117&zenid=XNYwiogv,vpYRoGJ52oiz1

The actual Verde Canyon Railroad has a different look but they copyright all their photos and the ones I got on a trip a few years back would not work, Still I made good use of my memories of that trip in drafting this story. And I recommend the trip to anyone who might be passing through central Arizona's scenic Verde Valley and wanting to see some sights inaccessible by highway to marvel at the scenery, the wildlife and the engineering that went into building this precarious track close to a century ago!

For Clay, always a misfit and bullied at school, contact with the railroad and railroaders in the small
town where he grew up was a lifeline. He has gone on to a career in the industry although not out on the track. Some odd compulsion draws him back to his long departed home despite the painful memories he has of the place. A chance meeting with noted photo-journalist Jon and subsequent sharing of an afternoon’s tourist rail trip result from his impulse. 

Although Clay develops an instant crush on the big bluff man, what can a geeky clerical type rail buff offer to a famous world traveling scenic and wildlife photographer like Jon? When Jon offers a short term holiday romance, Clay cannot resist but can he be satisfied with a brief, hot vacation fling, all he dares to expect? Will the train back to Clarkdale be a finale for him or the start of a great new adventure?

Deirdre readers are in luck!

As it turned out, nt only are Game of Hearts and Last Train to Clarkdale already out but next weekend there will be third one from JMS books! Either Thank You, Ranch Romances or Red Tails in the Sunset will be out with the other following along soon, Both are stories I really liked, special to me in different ways.

Ranch Romances is one of my real favorite tales. If you might wonder now and then what lief was like in the no-longer-wild but still developing and far from modern west in the post WWII era, here is a glimpse into that time. Nobody had heard of politically correct at that point and gay rights were a very distant dream. That meant life could be pretty had for a gentle young man who'd been put out of the army with a bad conduct discharge for the mere rumor of having possibly indulged in homeosexual activity.

There really was a magazine called Ranch Romances and I read it avidly some years later than the time when this tale takes place. It did have pen pal columns, too, and before anyone had come up with eHarmony or Match.Com that as an acceptable method of finding friends and potential romance. I kept the Post Office busy corresponding with several lonely cowboys and servicemen for awhile while they did their share,too. This story was my small tribute to the service that and similar pulp magazines provided when telephone connections were a bit iffy and the main entertainment in rural areas was the radio and events at the schools and churches.

Here is the blurb for this story and the cover, which I loved since it really reflects the style of art used in the 1930-1970 period by this and similar publications! I got permission from the  artist (Trace Zebar) to use it on the re-release.

Widowed Wade is desperate to find someone to help him care for his two motherless children while he runs his hardscrabble ranch. After seeing a “match” column in a pulp magazine, he sends off a letter, unsure what he will get. When it turns up quiet, gentle Darnell, he is both shocked and intrigued. Can this unorthodox arrangement possibly work?

Darnell is at the end of his rope when he finds an ad in a magazine that appears as if put there for him. He takes a desperate chance and ends up on a remote ranch in New Mexico. He finds the motherless children very loveable and their father scarily attractive. But how, in the stiff and conservative environment of 1949, can he dare reach for intimacy with his new hero? Will he end up back in dire straits or settled in the home he deeply craves?

Red Tails celebrates the heroic pilots who carry water and slurry into the rugged terrain of the west where again this year wicked wild fires are raging in the forest and open lands, often threatening small towns and rural farms and ranches. Hot, dry conditions create a virtual tinderbox, ready to explode with the catalyst of lightning, untended campfires or even a carelessly tossed cigarette butt. Then these daring pilots lift off into danger to help battle the blazes. What heroes!

Former military pilot Blaine Darby carries a load of guilt and pain from harm he may have caused in wartime. Now he seeks to earn some balancing good karma by fighting wild land fires while he holds
on to his great love of flying. Reporters like young Daz Contreras scare him, one of the few things that do, because he shuns the public eye. When a near tragedy develops he puts his life on the line to save a trapped hotshot firefighting crew. Will all this make the news?

Freelance investigative journalist Daz Contreras is convinced terrorists are behind at least some of the wild land fires plaguing New Mexico. All he needs is enough proof to break a story. As he pursues this he begins to follow pilot Blaine Darby and develops a big case of hero worship. Allowed to ride with his hero one time, he may have gotten the proof he seeks. But a heroic rescue may be an even bigger story. Will the reclusive Darby allow him to do it? 

This is another of Trace Zabar's fantastic covers which he graciously permited me to reuse. I love those eyes!! Yes, I know Blaine is gay and would not be drawn to me but I would gladly chase such a man around the block and do my best to catch him! However, I think he is going to find a good match with Daz once he gets over his prejudices about jounalists. Read the book to find out.

Monday, May 15, 2017

June Will Be Busy!

When it rains, it pours, huh? And June is often the driest month of the year in the desert southwest. No drought for those who like Deirdre O'Dare and maybe need a Canine Cupids fix or missed some older stories when they were available from Amber Quill.

First off, one of my extra favorite older tales will be out again June 3 from JMS Books. A Game of Hearts is one of my 'different' stories, much more emotion and character driven than many and there is not one dog! Instead I explore the intriguing possibility: how might an organ transplant impact the life, emotions and connections of the recipient? Tim has the heart of another man beating in his chest. He and DeVore are instantly drawn to each other. DeVore lost his life's love Steven ten years ago. It's a long shot but could Steven's heart be the one now within Tim and still reaching to connect with DeVore? It is a wrenching game of hearts as these two men sort out their relationship. Also I intend to pass all my profits from its sales to the National Donor Network if I can find where to send them since I have not seen any solicitations like many organizations spread all over.

Here is the cover and the general link to JMS Books. It will always be on my page as soon as it becomes available!  http://www.jms-books.com/index.php?main_page=index&manufacturers_id=191

Then another train related tale , also from JMS, will be out the last weekend of the month, Last Train to Clarkdale. When a geeky railroad fan and a noted nature photographer accidentally cross paths, the best Clay dares hope for is a brief, hot holiday affair with big, bearish Jon. Still, who knows what could happen after the last train to Clarkdale gets back to the station? Cover and details coming soon!

And last but not least, my second Canine Cupids package of three will be coming from Loose Id, release date to be announced soon and cover reveal coming also. This one is titled Cops and Canine Cupids and includes previously released stories Saved By Sam, Schnickelfritz in Love and a brand new one, Dogjacked.  You will meet a heroic Belgian Malinois, a rascally mini-schnauzer and his greyhound paramour, and a Pit Bull named Commando who is chauffeured around in a perfectly restored 1959 Plymouth Fury! Lots of laughs, some tense adventures and of course many hot times for the men owned by these dogs and their canine-assisted matches. Stay tuned!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Workin' on the Railroad--m/m, adult excerpt

Another of my favorite older stories is about to see a rebirth! JMS will be releasing "Workin' on the Railroad" in less than two weeks. You can find it here--and read another short excerpt too! http://www.jms-books.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=29_94&products_id=2094

There is a lot of history behind this one. I've been a big railfan since I was a kid and my younger brother even more of one. In fact he worked for the Rio Grand Western, the merged Southern Pacific- Rio Grande and finally the Union Pacific when it absorbed the other combined lines. He spent a  lot of time out on the track in various positions and finally wound up a general chairman for the labor union to which these people belonged. So there is my 'tech expert' and I consulted him often to be sure the background in this story was spot on. To the best of my ability, it is.

Both of our grandfathers were railroad men, our Mom's in the clerical and administrative side and our Dad's in train crew. Then my first adult relationship was with a B&B foreman (bridge and building) which is the other main division of track maintenance. In short, railroading is in my blood and spirit!

I write quite a few blue collar heroes and have to assert I respect these people highly. They are the real backbone of America and in the current technology-driven environment often do not get the respect they deserve!The rest of the population would be in sad shape indeed if it were not for the men and women who maintain our vast infrastructure of rails, highways, and electric lines, keep the assembly lines going, do the oil drilling, hard rock mining, farming, ranching and much more. Their efforts make our lifestyle possible. So I salute them as the real heroes they are along with our military and first responders. That's the 'roots' of Workin' on the Railroad and many other of my tales.

Here is the blurb and an excerpt from this one. The cover--which I really like!--follows too.

Blurb: Roane Wellman only intends to work one summer on railroad maintenance to pay for his next semester of college after his party guy ways cause his grandfather to stop supporting his schooling. In a summer of hard work, adventure and danger, he matures and finds a new course for his life. Before the season ends, he knows he’s meant to be workin’ on the railroad as he fights to build a career and a partnership that just might last for the rest of his life.

Alden Prescott is a loner, content to operate his big crane and shrug off the added responsibilities of being a gang foreman. However, his current foreman is a drunkard and so close to worthless that Alden ends up doing a lot of the functions he has tried to avoid. Although he’s strongly drawn to the handsome new summer hire, memories of a past tragedy make him afraid to pursue the relationship. What will it take to convince him that Roane is not going to let him repeat past mistakes? And what will happen when the current foreman winds up busted for his illicit drug use?  Workin’ on the railroad packs a lot of danger, challenge and some very hot times—days at work and nights at play. 

Excerpt: (adult rated, m/m)
Roane’s face held only sympathy and anguish. “Holy shit, man. Oh my God. But you shouldn’t blame yourself. Shit happens. Accidents. The world isn’t always nice or fair.” He plowed to an awkward halt as if aware that platitudes only begged the question.
Then he reached across and laid his hand, cold from holding the beer, over Alden’s clenched fist. “I’m sorry. I wish I’d known. Maybe things would have gone down different that night.”
Alden didn’t feel easy with sympathy. He didn’t even think he wanted it. He only meant to take away what he sensed was Roane’s notion that the sudden chill was due to something he had done wrong. “It’s not your fault, none of this, just…well I don’t want to see history repeat itself. I don’t think I dare try to handle mixing work and pleasure that way. It’s too risky.”
Roane’s grip tightened on Alden’s hand. “Wait a minute. I’m not that guy, not just out for kicks or a wild ride or two. At least that sounds like what he was doing. I won’t flirt when its time for business. We’ve been working together for a month now and it’s been okay, hasn’t it? From what you said, you and this guy Jason, had  just hooked up  and you were new with the crane, too.”
Alden nodded, not sure where the other man was going with his arguments. “Yeah, that’s true. And yeah, Jason liked to flaunt his looks and sex appeal and he did it all the time. I was prob’ly scared he’d move on to someone else, maybe someone more cool and macho than I was so he kept me going.”
“Well, then, why should something bad happen again? This is different. Why not give me, give us a chance?”
 “Are you sure you want to take that risk?”
“If I wasn’t I wouldn’t be asking.”
Alden closed his eyes for a moment. He heard Roane stir; the gripping hand released. Then the next thing he knew he was bodily hauled out of the chair and into the demanding circle of Roane’s arms. Shock jolted through him. He’d always been the one to make the first move, even with Jason.
Jason had very blatant about showing his interest but it had still been Alden who reached the first time. A few minutes ago, Alden had admired Roane’s obvious strength.  Now he experienced it. He could no more stop this  than he could block a runaway train.
The other guys could return any time but that didn’t matter. The only thing that mattered was Roane’s hard hot body crushing against his and then Roane’s avid lips. The kiss tasted of beer and something with cheese and chili that Roane had probably eaten for lunch. The other man’s mouth sealed over his with so much heat and force and intensity Alden wondered if he might go up in a flash like an arc welding rod touching grounded iron.
Roane maneuvered him in a circle, almost like dancing. Then with a shove he sent Alden sprawling onto the sagging couch. Dropping to his knees on the still-wet floor, Roane went to work on Alden’s belt, almost ripped the buttons undoing his Levis, and stopped only for a split second when he apparently realized Alden wore no underwear.
Alden’s cock sprang free, bursting past the open fly of the jeans and into Roane’s waiting hands. 

Friday, February 24, 2017

North to Alaska! Love is Snowblind

This very special story is now available. I am just tickled pink and other hues.  Here is the link to JMS Books New Release page where it will be on sale for the first week.URL: http://www.jms-books.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=29_94&products_id=2010  It is also in the Amazon Kindle Unlimited Program.

On Tuesday I am heading north to Alaska myself to be a volunteer for the Iditarod Trail sled dog race, one of the main inspirations for my writing this story. Of course I am wild with excitement! I expect that I will be writing some more stories set in this unique environment in the future.

Here is the cover one more time. If I was an ordinary reader I think I would almost buy it for the cover alone--with the story thrown in extra LOL.

And here is one more little snippet of an excerpt:

It was the next day before Dylan could talk the doctors into releasing him. Then he faced the problem of how to get to his place—and how to manage once he got there. The doctor had not wanted to cast his leg yet, but Dylan insisted, promising to return at once if he experienced any unusual pain, redness, sign of infection or other issues.
He could walk, but it was damned hard, and his foot felt like it weighed a ton. A mukluk, at least his normal ones, would not fit over the cast, which created another problem. How would he keep his toes from freezing? He ended up calling a cab to take him home, glad for once that he lived no farther from the city than he did. Usually he cursed almost being in town and having neighbors crowding too close, but this time it was a blessing. Fairbanks cabs were mostly four-wheel drive SUVs; this one was no exception and easily handled the icy roads.
When they got to his cabin, he saw his dog truck parked between the cabin and the kennel building. He also heard dog voices, a greater volume of sound than could be made by just the eight he’d left in the care of a neighbor boy interested in learning the musher’s trade.
They must’ve all made it home. He couldn’t wait to see them.
The cabin door swung open and a slim figure in an unzipped parka loped out to meet him. Too tall to be Sammy, the neighbor kid. Who then? Dylan struggled to find his balance, sorry he had not opted to borrow a walker or at least a crutch or cane. Even with the ribbed metal heel plate, he found the cast wasn’t made for walking on snow and ice. Before he knew what was happening, the still-unidentified person had a shoulder tucked under his arm on the right side to help him along the path and into the cabin.
Once inside, Dylan shrugged free and skidded to a stop. Everything looked neat and clean, in a lot better shape than he’d left the place in the last-minute urgency to get to the starting area for the race. From beside the stove, two mottled gray piles of fur stirred and jumped up, coming eagerly to greet him. They almost knocked him down as he tried to pet both of them and still keep his balance.
“Damn dogs aren’t supposed to be in the house,” he muttered. “What’s the deal here?”
Only then did he really look at the man who had apparently moved in and made himself at home. Who had Portola found to watch things? Did this guy know what he was doing?
The truth was, Dylan often let Freya and Thor and sometimes one or two of the others come in and share his space, just for the company, but that was contrary to custom and not the way real mushers were supposed to manage their sled dogs. They were working animals, not damned mollycoddled lap dogs or pets! Ha, don’t try to tell most mushers that bunch of bullshit! Most of them had one or two house dogs, if not half the pack.
Turning his attention to his unexpected guest, he watched as the other man shed his parka. All at once he recognized the untidy shock of dark brown hair, the narrow face, and luminous dark eyes that watched him now with a bit of deer-in-the-headlights anxiety.
“I—I felt like I owed them some special treats. I mean, they got us to the checkpoint. They worked for me, even if I didn’t know shit about what to do. And they’re the alphas, so they deserve some special perks.”
Dylan grinned. He couldn’t help it. The guy was so earnest, so anxious, and he had obviously done the best he could, taking on a responsibility not really his.
“Did Sammy help feed and stuff? He knows the routine and was caring for the dogs I left behind.”
The other man nodded. “Oh, yeah, he’s in the kennel right now. He’s been here most of the time since we made it back yesterday—well, actually, the night before when we got here. He told me how you feed them and stuff, and we worked on it together.”
Dylan nodded. “Sammy’s a good kid. At first, he was a pest, hanging around and bugging me to teach him about this stuff, but he’s picked it up fast. He’s a natural.” He took a moment to study the other man. Up close, he saw more age in the face than he’d realized. No, this wasn’t a kid looking back at him, but an adult, a man. He wasn’t sure whether that came as a relief or a new source of concern. He could deal with kids to some extent, but…
“I’m sorry—I know you told me your name, but it just didn’t stick. I gotta have something to call you, and maybe a name to make the check out to for stepping in and taking care of things for me.”

“I’m Grey Trammel, and there damn well isn’t going to be a check. You saved my stupid ass and it cost you the race, not just this one, but now others you can’t make while your leg heals. I owe you a hell of a lot more than a couple of days here with the dogs. I owed them that, actually, not even considering what I owe you.”

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Let's talk Canine Cupids

Those of you who have followed Deirdre and her books for some time already know about this ongoing series, linked not by characters but by the common theme of a dog or dogs who take a paw to getting their beloved master(s) hooked up with the right guy.  While they were with Amber Quill, these stories were always my best sellers and continued to find new readers even after they had been available for several years.  Then that publisher closed its doors and they became orphan books and off the market.

It took awhile, but now Loose Id  http://www.loose-id.com/ has started to bring them back with a new never-released story in each group of three. The first collection came out on Valentine's Day--I mean how perfect is that? Cupids on Love Day, even if they are canine? I featured the book at The Romance Studio's annual Valentines' Party along with my other February release, which also has some major doggie characters, Love is Snowblind.

The new story in this first collection is A New Leash on Life. Here is a blurb:

Justin Dunne returns to his small home town in southern New Mexico, victim of the recent recession and just short of broke. He learns of a business for sale and takes a wild chance to assume ownership of a pet grooming shop! In order to do this, though, he has to have a loan. And the local bank is now headed by Barry Barlowe.  An interrupted encounter with Barry, who'd been Justin's high school crush, sent Justin fleeing the scene years before. Now he has to meet and deal with the guy he has never been able to forget.

Barry Barlowe has his own problems--a position assumed after his father's death that he hates and a nagging mother to whom he is afraid to come out. Then in walks Justin Dunne. Barry is determined that Justin will not get away this time, but Barry finds he's very gun shy,stiff-necked proud, and still afraid what people in the conservative small town will think. How can Barry untangle this gordian knot of problems to win the love he always wanted?

The cover, by LI artist Valerie Tibbs, is perfect. That is Murphy in the middle, the dog Justin inherited from his new business's prior owner. The other two dogs are Mandy from Rescued by Love and Cedric from The Maltese Terror.  You can meet and enjoy all three by ordering this book here: http://www.loose-id.com/canine-cupids.html

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Got it Covered!

We have a cover for Canine Cupids and it is just perfect. I am thrilled with it. It even features a pretty good facsimile of the "lead dog" in each of the three stories.  And in just a week, this collection will be up for sale on the Loose Id site and elsewhere, shortly after if not at once.  Here is the link:  http://www.loose-id.com/canine-cupids.html

Since Canine Cupids will be released first, I'll give you all an excerpt of each story in the next couple of days with emphasis on A New Leash on Life which is the brand new story, never published before. I am also delighted to have two of my favorite original Canine Cupids tales again available but a new one is always a high point too.  I'll also be showing off both these new releases at the Valentine's Party at TRS from February 10-14 and there will be a giveaway or two, I promise!

And here is the cover: