Category: dreamspinner press

T.J. Klune Anthology; Oxford Comma? Penis on Denver TV;

T.J. Klune Anthology

I’ve posted about the gathering of authors and readers coming together to support authors, T.J. Klune and Eric Arvin, since last December…Christmastime, here in several places. Arvin went through a very serious medical crisis and people associated with the m/m genre literally ran to their sides to support them in all kinds of ways that just rocked. Even people who didn’t know them very well offered some kind of support. Klune and Arvin’s devastating circumstances hit me hard because it reminded me so closely of a very serious health crisis I went through with my husband, Tony, in 2007. As a result, I think more friendships were formed and it reminded us all that there are so many important things in this life we often take for granted.

And now, as Arvin is beginning to recuperate and Klune is finally seeing the light at the end of that proverbial tunnel, the support still continues. E-publisher, Dreamspinner Press, just launched an anthology where all the proceeds will go to Klune and Arvin to help offset medical expenses and all things related to a major medical crisis. My husband, Tony, had excellent medical insurance at the time of his health crisis in 2007. He was hospitalized on May 4th of that year and was not discharged until Labor Day weekend, 2007. That four month stay in the hospital left a hospital bill that reached two million dollars. I am not exaggerating this. So medical expenses alone can be devastating, not to mention other related expenses people don’t always take into consideration.

A group of authors banned together and created the anthology, Grand Adventures. Here’s more about that from the Dreamspinner web site.

 On September 1, 2011, TJ Klune wrote, “…it’s not about the ending, it’s about the journey…” in a review of Eric Arvin’s Woke Up in a Strange Place. With those words, two men began a journey of love and invited us to ride along. TJ and Eric have shared so much with us: their wonderful books, their smiles, their humor, their lives, and their inspiring devotion to each other. In December of 2013, their journey took a detour when Eric was taken to the emergency room. He survived the surgery to remove a cavernous hemangioma from his brain stem, but the challenges TJ and Eric face are far from over.

The authors in this anthology donated their talent as a way to support Eric’s continued recovery, to help bring strength to TJ, and to show both of them just how much love surrounds them. Grand Adventures is a diverse range of stories about the journey of love. We’re going on some grand adventures for a great cause. Thank you for joining us.

One hundred percent of the income from this volume goes directly to TJ and Eric.

You can get there from here to check it out.

Oxford Comma?

This is one of those writing “things” that’s always been debatable, at least since I can recall. The Oxford Comma, also known as the “Serial Comma,” is a comma used before a conjunction when there’s a list of three or more things…I went tot he store to buy eggs, butter, and milk.

I’ve always followed the Chicago Manual which supports the Oxford Comma and I’ve always used it…in books with publishers and in my indie books. I even use it in blog posts, e-mails, and anything I write.

As I said, there has always been an ongoing debate and some prefer not to use it. And this article talks about it and gives a link to a quiz.

Do you regularly use the oxford comma in your writing? The animated video embedded above features a three-minute TED-Ed lesson called “Grammar’s Great Divide: The Oxford Comma.”

This linguistics lesson focuses on the debate between those for and against what is “perhaps the most hotly contested punctuation mark of all time.” Back in 2011, the University of Oxford Writing and Style Guide noted that use of the serial comma should be generally avoided.

From everything I’ve ever heard this is all a matter of opinion and you can’t go wrong either way. It’s personal style and taste…as long as you keep it consistent. In other words, if you’re going to use the Oxford Comma in a piece, keep it consistent throughout. Same goes for if you choose not to use it.

You can read more here about the Oxford Comma.

Penis on Denver TV;

This story really is the best example I’ve ever seen when it comes to checking your digital photos are carefully as you can…and why you should never trust a photo stream unless you’ve glanced through it first. It could get embarrassing.

KDVR-TV’s “Good Day” program scrolled live through a Twitter feed of pictures from the KOMO-TV news helicopter crash scene, until the next images included Edward Scissorhands, a plate of food, and then a penis poking through a man’s zipper.

“That’s Edward Scissorhands, so we’ll just … just ignore that,” anchor Kirk Yuhnke said on air as the image flashed on screen.

The other anchors covered their mouths astonished to what they just saw, as the other broadcasters continued with the report.

You can see a youtube clip of the actual scene as it happened on the air and how the anchors reacted, as well as the penis everyone’s talking about. That poor woman on the far right almost fell off her chair.

And this happened to be a very serious news item about the helicopter crash in Seattle. Not good. And I have to wonder if it’s a good thing that we’ve all become so trusting. I would have checked those photos out first before I allowed them to be aired…or I wouldn’t have aired them at all. I once went to a party where a guy was showing photos of his container garden and right between a photo of his over-sized geraniums and impatiens was a photo of his over-sized penis. He wasn’t too thrilled about that either.

There’s a reason why they have a way to delete photos like this.

John Simpson, "Condor and the Crown," and Dreamspinner Press

My partner Tony has been asking me to write this post for a while and I finally decided to set the time aside and just do it. Tony is a huge fan of John Simpson’s work and I’ve known John through social media for a few years.

The last book of John’s that Tony read was “Condor and the Crown,” and he raved about it so much I’ve put it on my own endless TBR list. So while I haven’t read the book, and I’m not going to review anything right now, I am posting this little piece about John to let readers know how Tony feels about him…and his work. And, trust me, Tony has strong opinions about what he reads. I rarely hear him say he actually loved something. For that matter, I rarely see him talk about books he’s read often. With John’s work he never stops talking. I’ve even heard him recommend John’s work to friends at dinner parties.

From what I know about John, a good deal of his work is published with Dreamspinner Press. I have never published anything with Dreamspinner, nor do I have any plans in the near future to publishing anything with them. But I’ve only had positive experiences reading Dreamspinner books. In fact, last year I collaborated with an author who writes a great deal with Dreasmspinner, Andrew Grey. I’m a huge fan of Andrew and his fiction. The other books I’ve read published by Dreamspinner were just as excellent.

But this post is about John Simpson, who I find both charming and intelligent on a personal level. And I want to focus on that right now. When I first met him on facebook, I remember how polite and cautious he was. He didn’t slam me with promos about his books, he tried to get to know me instead. He’s also active in his community and gives back all the time. He’s also very honest and you always know where you stand with him. We have similar backgrounds in the sense that we’ve both been published by Alyson Books…and he’s been with his partner for 36 years and I’ve been with mine for twenty. Even though there’s an age difference, I’m sure that when we do finally meet in person…which we will…we’ll find we have even more in common. He recently asked me about a cruise this spring he’s going on with his partner. Tony and I spend time in Miami Beach off and on during the winter and the times didn’t work out. But I have a feeling it would have been a great trip.

Here’s a short bio:

John Simpson is a Vietnam Era Veteran, former Police Officer of the Year, a Federal Agent, a Federal Magistrate, an armed bodyguard to Saudi Royalty, a senior Federal Government executive, and recipient of awards from the Vice President of the United States and the Secretary of Treasury.

John feels that for too long fiction writers neglected gay men. John writes entertaining, enjoyable, and enthralling fiction centered on the lives and lifestyles of gay men. John allows his readers to see life through gay mens’ eyes. And just like real life, John’s characters have active and exciting sex lives. John calls on his broad personal and professional experience in writing gay erotica. John is author of numerous full length novels available through Dreamspinner Press, TeB and Naughty Nights Press and several short stories in Alyson Books anthologies. Additionally, John has just signed on with Silver Publishing who will be putting out short stories and novellas. John has written magazine articles for gay and straight audiences alike.

John lives with his partner of 36 years who he legally married in 2008, and their three Scottish Terriers. John is highly involved with the Church, specifically seeking to repair rifts between Christendom and the gay community.

John wishes to extend a very special thanks to his many female readers. He appreciates and loves the fact women enjoy male/male erotica, and he thanks you for your past and continued support. He hopes to never disappoint you, and always leave you wanting more!

John now has a total of 16 full length novels in print!

Some of the short stories previously published by Alyson Books include:

“The Virgin Marine,” “The Acropolis of Love,” “The Tower,” “The Serpent,” “Locker Room Heat,” “Campus Steam,” “Lust in the Sand,” and now “Love on the Rocks,” for the “Island Boys,” edition. Additionally, he has written numerous articles for various gay and straight magazines.

John has five short stories available through Dreamspinner Press: “The Smell of Leather,”, “The Sheriff”, “Fairy Tale”, and the very popular “Officers in Need,” and “That’s the Ticket.” Check them out today! A sixth short story, “Uniform Hardness,” which continues the story started in “Officers in Need,” is now available through Dreamspinner Press. If these stories don’t rock your boat, you’re in dry dock!

Having signed with an additional publisher, Silver Publishing, John’s first short story for Silver, “Piece of the Universe,” has just been released, along with “The Duke of Orleans,” a novella, now out, and “Spanking for Love,” and “Home Sweet Home,” also out now. John has also just signed with TeB publishing which will publish the jointly written novel with A.J. Llewellyn, “My Yakuza,” and written by himself, “Undefeated Love.” Look for numerous new titles coming soon!

Here’s a link to John’s website, and another where you can check out his books at Dreamspinner Press. If you’re looking for gay fiction written by someone with experience, take the time to check him out. According to Tony, you won’t be disappointed.

And I believe that John not only deserves my praise, but also my respect.