Today we have Chris Quinton at the cyber bar. Chris started creating stories not long after she mastered joined-up writing, somewhat to the bemusement of her parents and her English teachers. But she received plenty of encouragement. Her dad gave her an already old Everest typewriter when she was ten, and it was probably the best gift she'd ever received - until the inventions of the home-computer and the worldwide web.
Chris's reading and writing interests range from historical, mystery, and paranormal, to science-fiction and fantasy, mostly in the male/male genre. She also writes male/female novels in the name of Chris Power. She refuses to be pigeon-holed and intends to uphold the long and honourable tradition of the Eccentric Brit to the best of her ability. In her spare time [hah!] she embroiders, quilts and knits. Over the years she has been a stable lad [briefly] in a local racing stable and stud, a part-time and unpaid amateur archaeologist, a civilian clerk at her local police station and a 15th century re-enactor.
She lives in a small and ancient city in the south-west of the United Kingdom, sharing her usually chaotic home with an extended family, three dogs, a frilled dragon [lizard], and sundry goldfish.
Take it away Chris!
What we are Drinking
I've got two favourites - the good old-fashioned Gin and Tonic and the Moscow Mule
Squeeze fresh lime juice into a hi ball glass and drop in the squished shell.
Add ice cubes
Pour in the vodka shot and top up with ginger beer (or low calorie ginger ale if you're on a diet).
Deanna: First things first. Where are you, and what are you wearing?
Chris: I live in Salisbury, a small city on the edge of the UK's West Country. Archaeology has shown that people have lived in my area for over 6,000 years... What am I wearing? For perching elegantly on a bar stool, I'm wearing a long black embroidered skirt, a sheer black blouse over a silver camisole, cinched in with a silver and black waspie. In Real life - wearing a denim skirt and a white tee-shirt.
Deanna: LOL, brilliant! I'm still in my jammies! What’s your poison? Vodka? Gin? Beer?What yumminess did you bring for us?
Chris: (((Grin))) All of the above, but not at the same time, of course. I'm particularly fond of the ales some of the micro-breweries turn out, and the traditional ones like Theakstons Old Peculiar and Riggwelter from the Black Sheep Brewery. My daughter in law introduced me to the Moscow Mule - it's a lovely long refreshing drink for hot summer evenings. But it is called Moscow MULE for a reason (((winks))).
Deanna: (((pours them both a round))) Cheers! Now that we’re comfy, tell me about your new book? (((sips on her cocktail)))
Chris: (((raises glass in a toast))) Cheers *grin*. The new book is Greymalkin, the first in the Melusine's Cats series. It's a paranormal set in an invented valley on the North Devon coast, and brings Celtic legends into the contemporary world.
Deanna: Oooh, I am intrigued! Where did the idea for this story come from?
Chris: From a grey cat I saw sitting on top of a gravestone in an overgrown cemetery. I took a photo before he could pull the usual cat trick of moving the moment a camera appeared, and he ended up on the rather wonderful cover Meredith Russell did for me. I knew right away he had to be in a story, and it had to be a paranormal - he is no ordinary cat.
Deanna: I like the sound of that. So what was the hardest part of writing this story for you?
Chris: Halfway through the first draft I realized I'd missed out vital stuff involving the enemies my heroes would face. So I had to do some major rethinking, and the book ended up a lot longer than I'd originally planned (((grin))). This it thirsty work! How about another round, hmm?
Deanna: (((pours them another round))) Boy, these things are tasty!! Now, what’s the easiest thing about writing Greymalkin?
Chris: LOL! That isn't easily answered. Some days the words flow as easily as if I'm taking dictation, on others I could be trying to grind blood from stones. It's more a thing with me than with the story and characters. I am too easily distracted. (((takes a drink)))
Deanna: What is your dream story, your opus, if you will? The one you dream about writing but haven’t don’t it?
Chris: I would *love* to write an historical based on the life and companions of Richard III. He's fascinated me for many, many years, and the recent discovery of his burial place in Leicester has strengthened it. But I sincerely doubt it'll ever be written - I have a huge list of Works in Progress to plough through before I could begin to think of writing Richard's story.
Deanna: Well I would wanna read that! I love historicals! When did you first discover you were a writer? Were you like sitting on the toilet and just said, “Ya know, I think I’m gonna write a book.” Or was it more profound? J
Chris: (((snicker))) Dunno about profound. I was way too young for that. I can't remember for sure when I began to write stories. It was certainly before school essays when my English teacher gave us free rein on a given subject, though that gave me a real boost. I suppose it began when I wanted more from the authors of my favorite books, couldn't find new titles, so I wrote my own short stories about the characters. Cowboys and spaceships, those were my fascination - then I discovered the Greek and Roman myths when I was about eleven...
Deanna: What helps you when you are stumped on a scene in a manuscript? I usually have a cocktail … or three…(((holds up her empty which Chris promptly fills))) LOL But that’s just me.
Chris: I've found a glass or two of red wine can do wonders (((giggles))). Or a walk to a coffee bar in the city centre where I can work on my tablet. The walk plus two mugs of coffee usually do the trick.
Deanna: Sounds like a good plan of attack to me! Most of my stories have a theme song, do you do that for your characters?? If so what is it?
Chris: No theme song - I can't even listen to songs when I'm writing... (((sigh))). I have to have either silence, instrumental or sea-sounds in the background at home, nothing vocal or I'm singing along and listening to it rather than my characters. Oddly enough, the hubbub in the coffee bar doesn't bother me.
Deanna: Ha! Thats funny! I could never write in a coffee bar cuz I get distracted people watching. Another round? (((holds up the bottle)))
Chris: Of course! (((takes the refill and pounds it)))
Deanna: (((still making her drink)))Wait for me! (((makes a double then pounds it and pours another round))) Now we are even. LOL Chris, tell us about a scene that you have written then afterwards, when you read it, you shocked yourself? You know I want a dirty answer (((hint hint)))
Chris: (((giggles and has another drink))) What a surprise. Not. (((giggles again))) How about a typo? This one was classic, It was his fist time... Luckily I caught it before the story was submitted. (((Takes a sip to control giggles and the occasional hiccup))) Some of the scenes in Fool's Errand [first in my vampire trilogy with Manifold Press] between Andreas and Xavi startled me a little. I don't write BDSM, but the relationship between them was the closest I've come to writing a Dom/sub. Andreas' control over Xavi was psychological rather than physical, and one that Xavi needed and wanted.
I'm quite pleased with the way Jesse's and Will's scenes in Greymalkin turned out as well - especially the one where they have sex and don't break eye contact. That was sooo sexy.
Deanna: Ooh, I wanna read that scene... (((hiccups))) Excuse me! Well, now I know why you call these a Mule.....cuz we're gonna feel like we got kicked by by a Russian mule in the morning, Chris!!! Thank yo so much for visiting the cyber bar and getting me wasted! LOL
And to everyone else, thanks for stopping by and good luck on the drawing for a copy of Greymalkin! And did you see those hotties on that book cover??? YUMMY!!!
Just leave your email in the comments to enter!
by Chris Quinton
The mutual attraction between Jesse and Will is a bonus for Melusine when her enemies close in and she needs to rebuild her war band—starting with Jesse, Will, and Greymalkin.
Jesse Adams is an ex-rugby player who's gone into seclusion to avoid the media following a guilty verdict in a court case. Jesse has come to live for a year in Greenlynn, where he is supposed to be writing his biography.
Will Blake is an out and proud policeman, respected and liked by the community he helps to protect from rural crime.
When the two men meet their attraction is instant, but they have no idea their love will draw them into a centuries' old conflict.
Melusine, a deity of rivers and seas, long ago lost the Battle of the Betrayal and is imprisoned in a nexus centred on the source of the Lynn River. She can only travel in the flowing water of her river, and cannot set foot on her banks. Her cats are not so bound. Neither pets nor familiars, they move freely between the realities, her agents among the humans who live along the Lynn.
When Melusine's enemies come to the valley in search of revenge, Jesse and Will discover they have a part to play in the ancient feud. Do they commit to becoming part of a mythical triad, or leave the valley and forget they ever knew that magic exists?
"This is where the kayakers start," Will said. "We go this way." He turned and bounded up a series of uneven steps hewn from the rock. Now the footpath gave a good imitation of a mountain goat's track. The way climbed from ledge to shelf, taxing Jesse's legs to their limits. Running rough terrain, climbing the stony twisting path wasn't his forte, enjoyable though it was.
Gradually Will drew ahead. Jesse didn't have a problem with that. The way the man moved, the bunch and flex of muscles in those lean legs and buttocks, was a joy to watch. Before long, Will was out of sight. The narrow excuse for a path didn't fork off, so Jesse plodded on.
Ten breathless minutes later, he scrambled up the side of a pretty waterfall, squeezed through a gap between boulders the size of his car, and stopped in his tracks. Behind a partial barrier of large rocks, a bowl-shaped blind gully lay before him lush with ferns and moss, loud with rushing water. A wide pool, its overspill the source of the waterfall, covered two thirds of the gully floor, and steep walls enclosed it all. The still air was warm, humid, filled with the scent of vegetation. A small, very private world.
Will was waiting for him by the water's edge, flushed and sweaty and utterly desirable. Maybe it was the adrenaline from the run, maybe it had been building between them ever since the handshake in the Bridge Inn, but heat pulsed through Jesse's groin and filled his dick. It pressed against the confines of his briefs, heavy and potent. The stones hid him from the waist down, but something must have shown on his face because Will smiled slowly and seductively.
"I have to ask you something," Will said. "Are you over your ex?"
"Yes," Jesse replied. "Since long before the trial." His heart picked up its pace and anticipation tightened his gut. "Why?"
"Are you with anyone?"
"I don't do rebounds." Will's voice roughened a little. "And I don't think either of us is looking for commitment. But we could be really good together. How about it, Jess?"
Too fast, too soon, said the commonsense side of Jesse's brain. Hell, yes! clamoured the other, take a chance. For once, intuition and libido were in tune. He knew on a deep instinctual level that Will was unlike any of his previous lovers--not that there had been many of them. Yes, he lusted after the man, but alongside that basic hunger was an underlying need to share something more than sex alone. We could be really good together, Will had said, and Jesse knew he was right. He also knew that no matter how long this--fling?--lasted, it would not end with a betrayal.
His awareness focused on Will, the gloss of sweat on his skin and the way the sunlight glowed around him. He noted the beads of moisture on his upper lip, the rise and fall of his chest, the bulge in his blue shorts, and was moving away from the boulders towards him before he'd made the conscious choice. Will came to meet him, walking into his arms with a delighted smile. When their bodies met, the heat in Jesse's blood became fire, and he wanted this man with a fierceness that took him by surprise.
I'm offering a copy of Greymalkin in either PDF, MOBI or EPUB to one of the commenters below...
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