August 28th, 2016

kept tears

Guest Blogger -J. Harris

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Angus Macgregor has endured a lot in life. Mother passing when he was a small child, he also nursed an ill father to his last breath. But when he loses his one remaining relative, an uncle he’s never met, his existence is turned on its head forever. Bequeathed Clan Gregor Castle in the Scottish Highlands, Angus leaves Australia behind to take on the family business. It’s there he finds more waiting for him than he ever dreamed possible.

Daniel Ramsey is a man with secrets, none more dangerous than the fact that he can see what others can’t. When he meets one particularly handsome Australian, the attraction is immediate. Hesitant to let down his guard, his hand is forced when a former guest of the castle comes calling and attempts to stake a claim on the very man Daniel wants.


the haunting of angus  macgregor cover ebook

“Welcome home, Master Macgregor. The name’s Madeline Ramsey, manager o’ this fine establishment.”

Angus was greeted by a short, plump, middle-aged woman with kind brown eyes and hair the colour of fire. As she shook his hand, she regarded Angus with an openness he hadn’t anticipated. Given the circumstances which surrounded his presence at Clan Gregor Castle, he’d half expected to be treated as an interloper.

“Nice to meet you, Madeline.” Pain surged in the back of his throat, but he managed to swallow it down. The only reason he was there was because he’d lost people near and dear to him. He’d have given anything for the situation to be different.

Angus dragged his suitcase behind him and set it down in the middle of the large foyer, taking in his surroundings while he fought a looming yawn. The flight halfway around the world had been long and uncomfortable, but the excitement of inheriting an actual Scottish castle had kept him more than wide awake.

Certain the second his head hit the pillow he wouldn’t surface for several long hours, perhaps days, the plan was to enjoy every moment he could before jetlag took hold. Angus Macgregor had never ventured this far from his family home in eastern Sydney before. Since discovering his uncle, William Macgregor III, had passed the week previous, his mundane existence had become an absolute whirlwind.

“Please, call me Maddie.”

“Only if you call me Angus.” He winked at Maddie, and she giggled in a light, lilting manner.

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About the author

J. HARRIS is a mother, wife, an introvert and author. Her family is her life, her soul, and the very reason she gets out of bed every day. Coming a close second is her writing.

She discovered a passion for putting pen to paper in her later years, jotting down poems in birthday cards for family members.

It was then a spark was lit, and ever since, she hasn’t been unable to switch off the urge to share her stories.

L.J. Harris discovered that as much as experiencing pain, loss and betrayal can be devastating, capturing the feelings of anguish and loss that some of her characters have had to endure without firsthand knowledge would have proved difficult.

L.J. has been previously published and has shared several online stories and looks forward to continuing to share her work.

L. J. Harris can be found at:






kept tears

Sunday Small Talk

There is nothing really new here other than I did make strives on my SF story but I don't like my chances of finishing it by deadline. At least at the end I'll have something for a future market.

So instead today I thought I'd talk a bit about the erotic aspects of my stories. My last two stories (Corpse Powder and More Than His Scars (which has been sent to DSP for consideration for the Love Wins anthology)) have zero sex in them and that was a conscious decision.

I was reminded of it yesterday when another m/m author switched from romance/erotica to YA because she felt neither romance nor erotica were her strong suit. I feel that way myself. Neither of the above mentioned stories are particularly romantic. Several others I know who DO feel comfortable with the romance feel either less comfortable with the hard core sex scenes, or, like me are just plain bored with writing them.

That is seriously the case with me. I'm just plain tired of writing sex. I don't feel uncomfortable with it but in many cases I'm bored with it and that goes for reading it. I find myself skimming those sections lately while reading novels in the genre. It might be a hot scene but to me it's just meh, let me get back to the mystery/demon hunting/alien fighting whatever of the plot.

So seeing several far better known authors than me were also tired of writing the sex scenes, I got to thinking. I did even more thinking after animazement where I saw several readers eyes glaze over when we talked about the plot or another really relating to the LGBT community but spark like fire when we mentioned 'oh by the way, lots of m/m sex.' The two warring thoughts I had were 1. if I take out the sex I might lose readers. 2. I am uncomfortable with people reading merely because they think the m/m sex is 'pretty' or 'hot' (and I could go on here because I've seen tons of very unkindly thoughts from so parts of fan fic where that the sex is all that mattered but I don't want to offend too many people.) I have to say I'm beyond uncomfortable with the idea that the only reason people are buying the books for the sex rather than any interest in the concerns of the LGBT community. It makes me wonder if I'm actually doing something that could be somehow detrimental (I tend to overthink)

So I decided to play a bit with my fiction. Corpse Powder could have had sex scenes. Well if I wanted it not to be in the anthology because it was too freaking long. It ended up novella length and needed cut. There was no way to get it in without cutting more. I decided to do the fade to black instead. I think it works. Time will tell if readers agree.

I didn't use sex in More Than His Scars because it was a story in my Kept Tears universe and Aaron is dealing with the anniversary of the day he lost his arm in the war. He's in a bad head space and Rhys (and Corrine) are trying to get him back on his feet. There's a hint at the end that he and Rhys will have a romantic night but that wasn't what the story was about. I felt sex would have been distracting, maybe even disrespectful to actual veterans, suggesting a good fuck will take your mind off your disabilities. So I left it out on purpose.

As for Blood Red Roulette which I'm retooling does have some sex but the story is definitely not really a romance. There's a romantic subplot and some awkward first time sex but I'm trying to take a step toward the non-romance lines that are thankfully cropping up because I'd much rather read those genres personally.

Same for Behind Blue Eyes. I know there will be some erotic moments but they'll be shorter in spite of this being about a man being sold as sex slave. It's more about the ugliness of that (as opposed to the BDSM world where someone willingly submits, this is not about that at all!)

I'm not entirely turning my back on the romance side though. I am trying to find time to work in a contemporary romance as I was challenged by the ladies a animazement to at least stretch and try it. I swear I had started it but I cant find any record of it. I'm boggled by that!

As for the SF short I'm working on, I'm not sure where to work sex into it! I did want one scene or at least a make out scene but it's turning into flat out SF and a sex scene right now would be...awkward from the story telling side of things. Hmmm.
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