Writer & Reader Expectations and Some Ramblings About Romance

It’s funny, when I set out to write Exposed I was worried about a few things. One, that I would weird people out by using a great Welsh word as a safeword. Two, that my usual readers would find it too lighthearted, compared to my usual stuff. Three, that Emyr calling Greg “Daddy” would bother people. That’s what I expected…. and then the unexpected happened: it never once occurred to me that I’d be reading reviews with the words “BDSM”, “Dom”, or “sub” in them. What’s up with that? Did I market the book wrong? I never tagged it as BDSM, never mentioned any kind of D/s relationship, said that it was a little kinky, and told folks it was just a cute love story. What happened?

Just reader expectations, I believe, and ones that I couldn’t predict because I don’t know what they are. I was just saying to a friend that I have a distinct disadvantage when it comes to writing books that are included in a genre I didn’t even know existed until after I published my first book.

The B/l (or Daddy/lg or Daddy/lb) relationships I’ve witnessed in my life were just sweet, loving, and devoted… really nurturing things (with some really silly play …and, yes, occasional spanking thrown in for good measure) and I set out to capture that lovely fondness I’ve admired so much. (And I often mentally hug Greg and Emyr for really getting there!)

But, there were reader expectations with the words “Daddy kink”, (something I tagged it for just as a warning) that I did not know about. And… now I know (and knowing is half the battle! GI Joe... ahem sorry, I’m on cold meds)

So, anyway, next book I write, I’ll see if I can word the blurb a little more clearly to reflect what the book is actually about (or maybe not about?)

Which brings me to Romance in general…

Folks reading Caged keep saying “this isn’t really a Romance” to which I sit there, scratching my head, wondering where they got the idea that it was a Romance. It has romantic elements, for sure. Life does in general, doesn’t it? But Caged? A Romance? Max? A Romance? I don’t even know if Exposed is a Romance. I keep squinting at definitions and wondering what this whole Romance thing is about (disclaimer: I’m aromantic1). It feels far more nebulous a genre than what I read: Has robots? Sci-fi. Has dragons? Fantasy. Has robot dragons? Sci-fi/fantasy. thumbs up

With Romance, well… the requirements seem to depend on who you talk to.

I did read two books that are considered Romance when I was younger. One was called Sea Star: Private Life of Anne Bonny which was pretty rapey if I recall, and the other one was about um… the wild west? I think? Maybe about a doomed love triangle? Also rapey. So, my young adolescent self drew the conclusion that “Romance Novels” equated “rapey”. However, another thing they both had in common was a lot more plot circling around love and sex than I had ever previously read before.

Hey, all my books have plots that focus primarily on the relationship between the protagonists. So… Romance?

And… Novelist Walter Scott defined the literary fiction form of romance as “a fictitious narrative in prose or verse; the interest of which turns upon marvellous and uncommon incidents.” 2

My characters certainly encounter uncommon incidents. So… Romance?

Also from Wikipedia:

According to the Romance Writers of America, the main plot of a romance novel must revolve about the two people as they develop romantic love for each other and work to build a relationship. Both the conflict and the climax of the novel should be directly related to that core theme of developing a romantic relationship, although the novel can also contain subplots that do not specifically relate to the main characters’ romantic love.

Furthermore, a romance novel must have an “emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending.” Some romance novel authors and readers believe the genre has additional restrictions, from plot considerations (such as the protagonists’ meeting early on in the story), to avoiding themes (such as adultery). Other disagreements have centered on the firm requirement for a happy ending; some readers admit stories without a happy ending, if the focus of the story is on the romantic love between the two main characters (e.g., Romeo and Juliet). While the majority of romance novels meet the stricter criteria, there are also many books widely considered to be romance novels that deviate from these rules. Therefore, the general definition, as embraced by the RWA and publishers, includes only the focus on a developing romantic relationship and an optimistic ending.

All of my books, including Devil (if you look at it the way I do), focus on the relationships of the MCs and have HFN/HEAs…. So… Romance?

I think, maybe, in the end, that my books are Romance books, but only to folks who don’t have too rigid expectations. When it comes to meeting more stringent do’s/don’ts and customary story development… I will definitely fall short, because I just don’t know what those expectations are. But that’s a-ok! Despite the fact that I write and will continue to write entirely for myself, plenty of other people do enjoy my books, and that is absolutely amazing.

And… for those of you who have actually made it this far in my ramblings, you get a special something because I’m in a great mood today :)


1I’m the kind of aromantic who’d actually like to feel deeply about someone, hence my exploration of love in my books. Heh, it’s like I’m finding love through writing :)

2 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romance_novel

Exposed paperback now available at Amazon

Huzzah! There’s nothing like holding a physical copy of your own book, let me tell you. Exposed paperback just went live at Amazon this morning and you can order a copy here and if you’d like a signed copy, you can order that (or any other book) over here.

“This is erotic fiction of the highest calibre. Bey Deckard is a brilliant writer in my opinion. His imagination is incredible and his stories original and intelligently told. I absolutely loved every single one of his previous books, but Exposed has taken Bey Deckard to another level and this is, in my opinion, his best work to date. Fantastic and enthralling and captivating and arousing from the first word to the last.” —Books Laid Bare Boys

“I absolutely loved every moment of this story. It grabbed me from the get-go and I didn’t want to put it down. Sweet and kinky (with an age gap to boot!) is a win-win for me and Bey Deckard balanced it perfectly here.” —Sinfully Gay Romance Book Reviews

“By far the best daddy kink book I’ve read!”
“The chemistry between Greg and Emyr is instant and amazing. I was so into them as individuals and as a couple and all that comes with that. The sweet and sexy kink, the hurt/comfort, the Daddy/good boy and just everything. I truly have no idea what I am saying or how to properly review this because it was so much and I gorged hard core on this book.”
“Overall, a great read that I’m happy to add to my favorites of 2017 list.” —Boy Meets Boy Reviews

“Exposed is a wonderful May/December story with a side of Daddy kink that will make your heart melt.”—The Blogger Girls

“I knew this would be an amazing book because I love all of this authors work, what I didn’t expect was to fall in love with these characters so completely! Bey really knows how to draw you into a story like you are living it with the characters!”—Bike Book Reviews

Exposed is actually quite a gentle love story with a lot of hidden extras thrown in – as you would expect from Bey […] I would highly recommend Exposed.”—Love Bytes Reviews

Signed Paperback of Exposed – Giveaway

I still haven’t received my paperback proof of Exposed from CreateSpace. They usually take a day or two to ship it out to me but this time, according to UPS, it’s both supposed to arrive today and it hasn’t been picked up from the location in the States yet. How can it be both? Heh anyway… it’ll get here soon and once I’ve read through it again (which I’m looking forward to), it should be good to go at Amazon. I’ve also got a signed paperback giveaway here at Goodreads and I’ll probably be doing another giveaway for my newsletter subscribers (once I actually finish writing this month’s newsletter).

Thanks to everyone who’ve reached out to me to tell me how much they enjoyed Exposed :D (I’m thinking of asking Michael Ferraiuolo to voice the audiobook because I love his accents) and yes, promise it won’t take so long to come out with my next book. Nose to the grindstone, I swear ;)

And finally: Are you looking to save some money while simultaneously giving to a good LGBT cause?

KEBB is offering BOOK BUNDLES – at a discounted price – with all the proceeds going directly to The Trevor Project to help their efforts towards crisis intervention and suicide prevention in LGBTQ youth. Bundles of like reads (such as M/M, M/F, BDSM, Taboo, etc.) have been packaged together and are being offered at well below market prices.

(pssst… my Better the Devil You Know is bundled with Joseph Lance Tonlet’s The Brothers LaFon, Kora Knight’s Kríe Captivity, and Joseph Lance Tonlet & Louis Steven’s Quillon’s Covert for five bucks! Holy shit!)

Check all the bundles out here.

Exposed by Bey Deckard – Now Live!

*throws confetti* Happy release day to me!

Buy it here

The Author’s Note reads:

This book took far longer to write than anything else I’ve written. Why? Well, I was about half-way through when the US elections happened, and the result of the elections really took the wind out of my sails. How can I write about love when slogging through so much toxicity online? How can I write about happiness when everyone I know is afraid for the future?

But, then… isn’t that the point of writing something sweet and fun?

So, I finished it, and the end result makes me smile… here’s hoping it’ll make you smile too.

Good luck, little story! May someone love you as much as I do. :)

❂ Coming soon: Fugue, Concord by Varian Krylov + Giveaway ❂

To start off this week, I asked one of my favourite authors to come on over to speak about her upcoming novel.

Let’s give a warm welcome to the very talented Varian Krylov!

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Hi everybody! And Bey, thanks for having me back!

It’s kind of funny, I’m a writer, but when I step away from my tall tales and try to write a blog post, I never know what to say. But today, after chasing my tail for a bit,  I decided it would be fun to talk about one of the inspirations for my upcoming novel, Fugue, Concord.

 

0 FE2A0564I’m from California, but for the last two years and change I’ve been living in my favorite city in the world—Barcelona. It’s a fabulous place for lots of reasons: it’s part of Spain’s sunny Costa Brava, but in addition to being a beach city on the Mediterranean, it’s also got mountains, and its urban center is studded with amazing architectural gems, with Roman walls, neogothic cathedrals, and beautiful modernist buildings by the whimsical genius Antoni Gaudi and others. Barcelona is also a culturally vibrant cosmopolitan hub, with fabulous art museums, galleries, and a thriving music scene.

So, when I decided to write something a bit lighter and more playful than Bad Things and Trasmundo,  I thought, hey, why not take my readers on a little vicarious holiday to Barcelona?

Raval El Jardi  FE2A3074Unlike most of my novels, much of Fugue, Concord is rooted in my own experiences venturing into the realm of independent filmmaking for a few years before I moved to Europe, and also my life living as an expat in Spain. I had a lot of fun taking these characters to my favorite beaches (where bathing suits are always optional), on evening strolls through the winding, narrow streets of the labyrinthine Gothic neighborhood, and out to savor the local night life amid a few of my favorite jazz clubs.

jazz en la playa _E2A2452eAnother of my favorite things about Barcelona is the Spanish men (I know, huge surprise, haha). And I’d love to introduce you to Ángel, the god of jazz.

If you want a sneak peak at Fugue, Concord before the novel comes out next month, you can read a long, juicy, NSFW excerpt at my website: http://variansfiction.wix.com/variankrylov

I’ll also be posting updates and announcing giveaways on my Facebook page. If we’re not already friends, don’t be shy! I love talking to readers and fellow writers!

Besos!

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This book… oh this book. I want to visit Barcelona more than ever now :)

For a chance to win an ebook copy of Varian’s book, Fugue, Concord (when it comes out), comment below and tell me where in the world you’d love to travel to. I’ll pick one random winner on Monday, July 4th at 7pm EDT.

Good luck!

Happy Monday! – Careened in wide distribution

I know Mondays suck, but this Monday happens to be the day that Careened: Winter Solstice in Madierus is finally out of Kindle Unlimited and available at ARe and Smashwords (and more places, once Smashwords gets the files out to Barnes & Noble, etc).

So… hooray!

 

Careened: Winter Solstice in Madierus

Baal’s Heart #3.5

Novelette (13 000 words)
Genre(s): Historical Fantasy, Holiday Short, Triad, Gay

Buy it from

And

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BLURB

A Baal’s Heart holiday short, following the events in Fated: Blood and Redemption

Plagued by terrible dreams, Jon begins to distance himself from Baltsaros and Tom. Perhaps a little holiday cheer is just the thing to help the three of them find common ground again.

Kestrel’s Talon – Out now!

Kestrel's Talon

Happy release day to me! (woo!)

Kestrel’s Talon is the first book in a new fantasy series, The Stonewatchers. I’m looking forward to introducing you to these guys… but it’s impossible to say much about the story without spoiling it.  So… I’ll just say that if you enjoyed the Baal’s Heart books, this book might be for you.

Looking for some early reviews? Check them out here.

Buy it at Amazon (kindle and paperback available)

 

Better the Devil You Know… the alternate version? :)

Better the Devil You Know

Better the Devil You Know

Independently wealthy, elegant, and powerful, Byron’s in the prime of his life. However, while the work he’s so passionately driven by has him meet new guys all the time, he’s never really found “the one”. Is he destined to be single forever?

Enter Michael. Handsome, charming, and usually fun-loving, he’s found himself in a slump that he just can’t seem to shake. He figures work is the problem, but he doesn’t know what to do about it—it’s gotten so bad that he barely leaves the couch on his days off. Something’s gotta change.

So when Michael gets talked into a date by Byron’s matchmaking personal assistant Gloria, he’s not really expecting much. However, the enigmatic older man might just be the one to put the smile back on Michael’s face.

Buy Now

(and yes… this is a joke)

(please don’t buy this thinking it’s a nice romance book)

 

The Actor’s Circle

What is The Actor’s Circle?

the-actors-circle

Well, it’s a new series. I’ve had all these seeds of of stories kicking around in my head for a while, and while writing The Complications of T, I started to get a picture of what I could do with all of them. Then, with The Last Nights of The Frangipani Hotel, the idea really solidified… especially when halfway through writing it, my brain was already writing the next.

How many books are in the series?

Four. There are three standalone books: The Complications of T, The Last Nights of The Frangipani Hotel, and hopefully coming before the end of the year, The Window in Between. What order you read them is entirely up to you.

The fourth book, which will bear the series’ name, The Actor’s Circle, will be about the three couples that came together in the first three books. I have to say, I’m very excited to write it. :)

I have no fucking clue whether I’m going to cock it up, given what I’m planning for the fourth, but let me just say that I’m enjoying the hell out of the process!

 

Frangipani is now available for pre-order at Amazon :)

frangipani-2000x3000

The Last Nights of The Frangipani Hotel will be published on Sept. 12, 2015… but! you can pre-order your copy today from Amazon :)