Enter to win a free e-book!

This is what my office looked like when I arrived Monday morning:

My secretary did a good job, didn’t she? I especially like the giant spider on my chair. I’ve moved the webs away from my chair and monitor so I can work, but the rest remain. Very festive. (The giant gavel, the serotonin model, the Freud toys, and the Scream blow-up doll are always there. As are the piles of papers. And no windows. I never have any windows.)

So, it’s Halloween, which has always been one of my favorite holidays. And NaNoWriMo is about to begin. This will be my fourth NaNo year and an especially busy one, but I’m going to give it a shot anyway. I’m really itching to get started on the new novel, which will be a Good Bones sequel. So, to celebrate Halloween and NaNo, I’m giving away an e-copy of Good Bones. Who wouldn’t want a hipster werewolf to spend some time with?

To enter to win, just leave a comment below, in which you answer this question: If you were to dress up for Halloween this year, what would your costume be? Also leave your email address. I’ll randomly choose a winner on Saturday, November 2, at noon Pacific time.

Holiday releases

I’m feeling slightly guilty, because while some of you are buckling down for dangerous weather, we’re having a beautiful day here in California. It’s supposed to be 80F here today.

But hard as it is to believe today, the winter holidays are just around the corner. I’ll have two holiday short stories released in December. One of them is a Hanukkah-themed story from Dreamspinner, entitled “A Great Miracle Happened There.” You will be able to order it separately in December, or you can get it as part of the Advent Calendar package, in which you get a story every day in December. The package is cheapest if you preorder by the end of October. Here’s the blurb for my story (which will cost $2.99 if you buy it separately:

This winter, Jude Bloch can’t decide what bothers him more—the crowds of people or the holiday revelry. Even meeting handsome chef Mac Appel fails to cheer him up because Jude knows the most he could hope for is a one-night stand. But one night turns into two and then more. Maybe Mac can bring some warmth into Jude’s holiday season.

I will also have a Christmas story released by Silver Publishing. It’s called “Joys R Us.” It comes out December 13, and will cost $1.99. You can preorder now. Here’s that blurb:

Reece considers holiday events wasteful. But when he’s coerced into standing in line for this year’s must-have toy, he gets trampled by the crowd. Store manager Angel rescues him–but can Angel also show Reece the joy of Christmas?

My novel Brute will also be released in December or January. I’ll let you know when I have a release date. Along with Miner and Drew, Brute is one of my favorite characters that I’ve ever written.

But of course Halloween is even sooner! And to celebrate Halloween and the beginning of NaNoWriMo, I’ll be doing a giveaway later this week. Check back for details.

Lesson from My Daughter

Recently, I was sitting in the kitchen, typing away at my laptop. I usually am. And my older daughter, who’s 13, was making a sandwich. “Hey, Mom?” she said.

I probably grunted a reply.

“What would you do if I told you I was gay? I’m not, but what would you do?”

Well, that got my attention. I gave her an honest answer: “I’d tell you I love you and it doesn’t matter to me and all that’s important to me is that you’re happy.”

She seemed good with that. “Okay.”

I asked her what had raised the question, and she said there was some TV show with a teen who came out to her parents and was rejected, and that got her thinking.

The thing is, it got me thinking too. Because my kids know I write novels with gay protagonists (the older one refers to the Praesidium trilogy as my “gay seamen” books. *sigh*). They know the main focus of my academic life is on prejudice. Over the years they have listened to my many lectures on the importance of treating everyone equally, regardless of color, origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender, physical characteristics, etc. They have heard me go on and on about the insidious effects of bias. They’ve been repeatedly exposed to my views on the stupidity of prohibiting same-sex marriage. So I pretty much assumed that my daughter knew that if the occasion arose, I’d be a safe person to come out to (my husband, too, incidentally).

I was wrong.

And if after all she knows about me, she still was uncertain about what my response would be, that makes me wonder about all those kids out there who’ve heard their parents spout anti-gay messages. How must they feel?

So this has emphasized to me the importance of explicitly letting our children know that we love them no matter what, and that we support them no matter what, and that nobody should face rejection from their family (or anyone else) because of whom they love. The incident has also brought home to me the importance of safe spaces for young people.

 How could I not love this kid, no matter what?


Today I’m going to talk about donations and then hit you up for one.

I give all the royalties from my Praesidium trilogy (Stasis, Flux, and Equipoise) to Doctors Without Borders. Not only is the cause an excellent one, but the charity itself is well-run, so that a very large proportion of donations actually goes to doing good. I’m getting ready to make another donation to DWB–for $900. I’m pretty darn pleased over that. That’s enough to treat respiratory infections in 650 kids and purchase 280 rapid diagnostic tests for HIV.

Because you guys have bought my books, I’ve been able to give this worthy cause several thousand dollars. I think you should all give yoursevles a round of applause.

So now my older daughter is doing a fundraiser. For every $15 she collects, $10 goes to buy a wreath for a grave at Arlington National Cemetery. The remaining $5 goes to help fund her class trip to Washington, DC and New York City this coming spring. If you’re interested, you can donate online here:

Back from GayRomLit

I am back from GayRomLit. Didn’t get much sleep, but had a wonderful time and met some really fantastic people. I didn’t actually take that many photos, but I have a few to share.

 There were go-go boys.

 And chiles. Lots and lots of chiles. I’ve never been to New Mexico before and had no idea how seriously obsessed they are about chiles. They put them in everything. Sushi!

 Sugar skulls from one of the publisher-sponsored events.

 Drunk authors and readers dancing the hokey-pokey. I’d had 3 margaritas myself at this point (a personal record) but didn’t dance.

 And when I finally returned home, my copies of Don’t Try This at Home were waiting for me. My story “Tyler Wang Has a Ball” is in this anthology.

GayRomLit was a great event and I’d highly recommend it. Next year it will be in Atlanta. Also, I’d like to add that the staff at the Hard Rock Casino Hotel really did rock–everyone there was super nice and friendly.

More on Joys R Us

Here’s the blurb for “Joys R Us”

Reece considers holiday events wasteful. But when he’s coerced into standing in line for this year’s must-have toy, he gets trampled by the crowd. Store manager Angel rescues him–but can Angel also show Reece the joy of Christmas?

And the buy link if you want to preorder: https://spsilverpublishing.com/index/book_authors_id/329/typefilter/book_authors/?zenid=07f28432b0d43b04dab870df6cfce682


Here’s a little tease: the cover for a short story that Silver Publishing will be releasing this winter. The tentative release date is December 13.

He’s awfully pretty, isn’t he?

“Joys R Us” is a Christmas story. And if that’s not enough holiday for you, Dreamspinner will release my Hanukkah story in December; that one’s called “A Great Miracle Happened There.” I’ll have blurbs for you as the dates grow closer.

And also in December or January, I’ll have a new novel for you. It’s called Brute and it’s a nice, long 90,000 words. More on that later too!

Alter Ego

I had a crappy day at work today. Other people screwed up and I’m stuck having to clean up their mess while simultaneously trying to quell panic among students and colleagues. And on top of that, my older daughter is going to have a slumber party tomorrow, which means there will be 8 13-year-old girls in my house. Shudder.

Oh, but I’m going to survive this, because next week I get to climb on a plane and fly to Albuquerque and be Kim Fielding for several days. You see, Kim Fielding is a pen name–not because I don’t want people to know what I write, but because I publish academic stuff under my real name and don’t want the two worlds to mix too much.

The benefit of this is that I can be someone else for a little while. Kim Fielding is not a professor and does not have to deal with administrators or attend endless meetings or write pointless reports or try to please committees. Kim Fielding may have children, but they do not require constant chauffeuring and they are always well-behaved. Kim Fielding gets to spend her days traveling and writing fiction. And next week, Kim Fielding gets to attend GayRomLit.

I am ready. After my recent sprint from terminal 2E to terminal 2F at Charles de Gaulle with my heavy carryon weighing down my shoulder the whole way, I bought a laptop/carryon bag with wheels. I have swag to give away to other attendees. I have left instructions at work and home for everyone to carry on in my absence. Mentally, I’m already on my way.

Are any of you going to be there next week? If so, Kim Fielding can’t wait to meet you!