Friday, 21 July 2017

Anthem of the Sea Deleted Scene #4




By the time you read this scheduled post I should be enjoying my own Anthem of the Sea on a cruise around the Scottish Aisles. I’ll share some pictures of the voyage when I get back, or check out my twitter page @ThomWolf to see where I’ve been so far. In the meantime, here’s another deleted scene from Anthem of the Sea.

Today’s scene involves Oliver Gill. It’s another flashback filling in the backstory of the boyband Overload. Oliver’s a deeply disturbed young man when we meet him in Anthem, but this flashback demonstrates how highly strung he has always been. Like the early scenes it was cut for pacing. I managed to incorporate the back story in a more efficient manner in the final book, but I do love this scene.

See you soon

Thom xxx



Deleted scene #4



“Fucking hell. What’s the point of any of this? These numpties can’t sing for shit.”

Eighteen years old, Oliver Gill already had the temperament and attitude that he would become notorious for. Difficult: one of the softer words used to describe him. He’d been a diva in the making since primary school. By his teens he’d developed a sense of entitlement to go with his self-belief.

Newly formed boy band Overload were putting the final touches to what was slated to be their debut album. Oliver hated everything about being in a band but most of all he loathed having to share. He sang lead vocal on all of their tracks and made sure he stood front and centre during their performances and photographs, but that wasn’t enough. He still had to share the spotlight with four other boys – or baggage, as he called them.

He was destined to be a solo star, not one of five boys in a crappy line up. The fact the other four were all better looking than him was something he was loath to admit. They hadn’t been hired for their singing skills. That was fairly obvious. Anyone with ears would know who the real star of Overload was.

“It’s a means to an end,” his sister, Rachel, assured him. “Use the band to get famous, then dump them.”

She was right of course. Robbie Williams, Geri Halliwell; they both started out as members of a band, walking out at the height of their fame. That’s exactly what he planned to do.

Ditch these losers at the first opportunity.

Overload were in the studio to hear the playback of their album. The whole thing was mixed and ready. They were due to shoot their debut video in a couple of weeks.

Oliver sat apart from the rest of the band. He resolved to start how he meant go on with them; keep his distance and let them see who the star of this show was. They sat on a sofa together – Ben, Christian, Luke and David – grinning like lunatics, giving each other juvenile high fives. Fucking idiots.

Oliver sat in an arm chair, off to one side, wondering how quickly he could get out of this. This album should be enough. Four hit songs. Everyone would see he was the voice of Overload. Record companies would line up to offer him a solo contract. It would all be so easy. Seeing these dick heads crash and burn without him, that would be the icing on the cake.

Anderson Pole, the twenty six stone record producer, waddled in, out of breath, with the album on disc. “This is it boys. Enjoy it.”

The first track started to play. Oliver flinched when his lead vocal came in. Anderson had added some kind of electronic effect to his voice. What the hell? He could understand them having to use technological tricks to sweeten the vocals of the other four, but he didn’t need it. Maybe it was just an effect on this one track.

Three songs in and the treatment on his voice got heavier. He got to his feet and hit stop on the player.

“Is this a fucking joke? What have you done to my voice? I sound like a God damned robot.”

Anderson Pole turned his piggy eyes towards him. His chubby cheeks were scarlet. “It’s a modern sound,” he said, sounding calmer than he looked. “Most records on the charts are like that. Even Madonna uses a vocoder these days.”

“I’m not Madonna. I’m Oliver Gill.”

“No. You’re Oliver from Overload,” one of the boys chipped in. The others sniggered.

“Whatever you’ve done, I want you to change it back,” he said.

“You’re not the producer,” Anderson told him. “I am. The effect stays.

“I don’t need it. I’m not like the other four. I can fucking sing.”

“You think you can sing,” piped up Ben, “but your tuning is awful.”

“Ha. What would you know about tune? They might as well take the four of you cunts off the record for all you contribute. I’m the singer in this band and you all fucking know it.”

“Calm down, Oliver,” Anderson warned.

“Oh, give it rest you fat bastard. Get back on the mixing desk and put this shit right.”

The other boys were on their feet, all siding with the producer.

“You need to pipe down and apologise,” Christian said.

“Apologise! That’s a joke, right? To whom? For what? For being the only voice in this piss poor excuse for a band? For having that voice ruined in production by this idiot? You didn’t need to make me sound as bad as them, Anderson. You needed to make these cunts sound better.”

Ben moved forward, fists raised, and was stopped from hitting Oliver by the rest of the group. Undeterred, Oliver proceeded to spew abuse at the others until security was called from the foyer and he was dragged off to an empty office.

Sam LeFerve, the bands manager, arrived half an hour later. Oliver knew from the look on his face that Sam was livid. Everything above the neck of his shirt was crimson. Good. Oliver was angry too. It would be useful to have someone see things from his side for a change.

“I was in a meeting with tour promoters,” Sam said. The calm of his voice was at odds with the anger in his eyes. These fat guys should really keep a lid on their temper. Sam and Anderson looked like they would have heart attacks. “I had to cut my meeting short to come and sort this shit out. What the fuck is going on?”

“Have you listened to the final mix of the album?” Oliver demanded.

“Of course I have. I approve everything.”

“How could you approve that? It’s utter shit. Have you heard what they’ve done to my voice? It doesn’t even sound like me.”

“You’re not Pavarotti, kid. You’re in a boy band and I want you to sound like every other fucker in the chart. Don’t you get that?” Sam took out a cigarette and lit up.

“I don’t think we should be a boy band,” he replied indignantly. “I sang all the main vocals, the others did nothing. Put them on backing, let me be a solo artist. They can be my dancers.”

Sam’s eyes widened and the cigarette hung limply in his mouth. Suddenly Oliver didn’t feel so sure of himself. This wasn’t going how he expected it. Sam didn’t fight his corner like he ought to.

Sam laughed. It was a flat, humourless sound. “Jesus Christ, you’re serious, aren’t you?”

He stood up straight. “Of course I am.”

“It’s a boy band. I don’t want a solo act. I want five cute boys that girls and gays will want to fuck. I don’t give a shit about the singing. I’m paying Anderson to sort that out.”

“He doesn’t know what he’s doing.”

“He’s produced a dozen top twenty singles. I’d say he knows a lot better than you do what works and what doesn’t. He’s told me all about you too. You’ve been a pain in the arse since day one.”

“That’ll be right,” Oliver sneered. “Two face, fat bastard.”

Sam drew slowly on his cigarette, watching Oliver through narrowed eyes. “It’s vital that Overload look right. But there’s something more important than looks in this band.”

“What?”

“Attitude, kid. And yours stinks. I’m sorry. I’ve got a lot of money invested in this project and you’re a liability I can do without. It’s over. You’re fired.”

What!” He heard the words but couldn’t believe them. “You can’t sack me. I’m the lead singer. It’s the others you need to sack.”

Sam shook his head. “I’ve got no problem with the other boys. They look good and they do what they’re told to. You’re a pain in the arse I just don’t need.”

Oliver trembled. Sam was serious. Shit! Why couldn’t he keep his mouth shut? “Look, I’m sorry. Okay? I’ll keep quiet from now on. Do what you say.”

“This isn’t going to work,” Sam said. “I made a mistake in choosing you. I need to cut my losses before it’s too late.”

“But ... but the album. It’s already finished,” Oliver said.

“It’s nothing I can’t fix. We can take you off and record new vocals with another singer. I’m freeing you from your contract.”

Noooo.” The world had turned to shit beneath his feet. He’d been so stupid, pushed everything too far, but it wasn’t too late. It couldn’t be. Surely there was a way of turning this mess around. “Sam, I said I was sorry. I’ll behave. No more tantrums. I’ll be nice to the rest of the guys. But don’t do this, please. Don’t fire me.”

Sam’s expression was fixed. “Too little, too late. I’ve had a bad feeling about you for weeks. Since I put you all together. The constant feedback I get is that you’re a pain in the arse. Anderson, choreographers, stylists, the rest of the band – you make it difficult for everyone. Nobody wants to work with you. Me included.”

Tears pricked at Oliver’s eye lashes. Don’t cry, he warned himself. Do not cry. “Can’t we work something out? Just you and me. I know you like me. I know why you hired me. Let me make it worth your while. A blow job, right now.”

Sam took a step back. He looked horrified. “Oliver, stop.”

“You can fuck me, if you want. I’ve never done it in the arse before.” A lie. “You can be my first. I’d like that. You would too, wouldn’t you? To pop my cherry.”

“Oliver, don’t insult me or demean yourself.” Sam was angry now, heading for the door before the situation got worse.

“Don’t go,” Oliver pleaded.

“I’m sorry but it’s over. There’s no place for you in this band.”




LINKS:







Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Out Now—Winning the Campaign Manager by Lucy Felthouse (@cw1985) #PNR #erotica #romance #gay




Blurb:

Politics has never been so sexy!

Cade Avery is running for a position on his local county council. He’s extremely good at what he does and is a valuable asset to his community. The trouble is, he upsets people, says the wrong things, and rides rough-shod over other people’s plans and ideas. His assistant, Mary, eager to improve Cade’s public image, hires him a campaign manager.

Quentin Rayworth is thrilled to be working with such a formidable public figure. It’ll be a challenge, but he’s confident he can help Cade to win the election, and knows that the achievement will look impressive on his CV.

It’s soon clear that the two men are set to be an excellent team. That is, until Cade’s werewolf makes its intentions known—in Quentin, it has found its mate, and it will not rest until he has claimed him. But can Cade—and his wolf—win over the campaign manager?

Buy links:

Amazon (universal link): http://mybook.to/WTCM




Other links will be added here when they become available: http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk/published-works/winning-the-campaign-manager/


*****

Excerpt:

“You’ve done what?” Cade Avery yelled, fixing his long-time friend and colleague, Mary Summers, with a glare. He slammed his hands down on his desk, making a bunch of pens jump and rattle, and causing water to splash over the side of his glass. “Why the hell would you do such a thing?”

Mary, by now used to Cade’s temper and frequent outbursts, didn’t flinch. Standing firm on the other side of his desk, she calmly stated, “You heard me, Cade. I’ve appointed you a campaign manager. And as for the why, I think it’s pretty damn obvious.”

“Not to me,” he grumbled, snatching a handful of tissues from the box in his top drawer and swiping irritably at the liquid he’d spilled. “Seems like an unnecessary expense.”

With a heavy sigh, Mary replied, “Do you want to win this bloody election or not?”

“Yes, of course I do. What sort of a stupid question is that?”

“Well then, you need a campaign manager. The rest of the team and I already have enough on our plates. We can’t handle that side of things, too. Not to mention the fact that you really need someone with … expertise … in that department. Someone who can boost your public image, make you more likeable … you know, so people will actually vote for you.”

Screwing up the wad of soggy tissue and dumping it in the wastebasket beside him, Cade snapped his gaze to Mary. She stood, the ever-present iPad clutched against her chest, looking as determined and immovable as a five-feet-one, slim thirty-five-year-old was ever going to get.

He sat back in his chair and folded his arms. “What’s wrong with my public image?”

Rolling her eyes heavenward, her body tensing, Mary’s cool demeanor actually looked on the verge of cracking. Taking a deep breath and releasing it, she looked back at him. “Give me strength, Cade. Are you fucking serious?”

She may have used the deep breath and probably a considerable amount of willpower to dampen down her physical reaction to his question, but her actual words gave her true state of mind away. As a rule, the word “bloody” was as bad as it got for Mary. To have enticed a “fucking” out of her, and within the same conversation, no less, meant she was in real danger of losing her temper with him. And despite her diminutive frame and usually chilled-out personality—especially in comparison with his huge frame and fiery personality—when she did lose it, she was utterly terrifying. Possibly the fact that she rarely got angry was what made it so potent when she did. Mary’s ire could turn even the thickest-skinned person into a blubbering wreck.

“Mary,” he cooed, backtracking quickly, “come on, sit down. Why do you always insist on standing up in here?”

“Because, unless we’re having a meeting, I don’t generally need to stay long. I normally impart my information, you give your feedback, and we get on with our day.” She shifted restlessly and narrowed her eyes. “But today, it seems, you’re having a bit of a brain fart. Do I really need to spell it out for you?”

Raising his eyebrows at her increasing irritation, and wondering if there was something going on in her private life that was making her so touchy, he nodded. “Yes, I really think you do.”

A few seconds of silence passed, in which Mary again seemed to be getting a grip on her irritation. She finally said, “All right. But don’t forget; you asked for it.”

*****

Author Bio:

Lucy Felthouse is the award-winning author of erotic romance novels Stately Pleasures (named in the top 5 of Cliterati.co.uk’s 100 Modern Erotic Classics That You’ve Never Heard Of, and an Amazon bestseller), Eyes Wide Open (winner of the Love Romances Café’s Best Ménage Book 2015 award, and an Amazon bestseller), The Persecution of the Wolves and Hiding in Plain Sight. Including novels, short stories and novellas, she has over 160 publications to her name. She owns Erotica For All, and is one eighth of The Brit Babes. Find out more about her writing at http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk, or on Twitter or Facebook. Sign up for automatic updates on Amazon or BookBub. Subscribe to her newsletter and get a free eBook: http://www.subscribepage.com/lfnewsletter



Release blitz organised by Writer Marketing Services.

Friday, 14 July 2017

Anthem of the Sea Deleted Scene #3



Hello. It’s been a hectic couple of weeks, promoting Anthem #1 while writing Anthem #3. I’m about to go on holiday (a cruise – yay) but to add to the chaos I decided it would be a good idea to have a new kitchen fitted while I was away. So, as well as the usual rushing around trying to get ready for a trip, I’ve been emptying cupboards and packing up the kitchen utensils this weekend. I’m sure I’ll appreciate it next week, when the old kitchen is ripped out and I’m sailing far away from the mess, but at the minute it’s a stress.

We’re taking a seven-night trip around the Isles of Scotland, which I’ve never done before. I’ve only been to Edinburgh and Dundee before, so it’s exciting to see more of the beautiful coastline and islands around Scotland. I’ll share some pictures when I get back.

I’ve scheduled some posts to go live while I’m away, including cover reveals and guest posts from other authors.

Today I’ve got another deleted scene from Anthem of the Sea. Yes, another one. As I’ve mentioned before the book was heavily cut after the first draft, mainly for reasons of pace and fitting within the word counts of the genre. Like all edits, we have to sacrifice some good stuff along the way. With this book, that included a lot of minor characters and subplots. Originally, I had Daniel and Elijah meet a number of other passengers. These included Rula and Marianne, a mother and daughter traveling together. As you’ll see if you read the following excerpt, these women had a lot going on, themes that were explored across the book. This scene takes place on the first night when Daniel is invited to the captains table for dinner. All that remains in the finished version is a mention that dined with captain while Elijah was on stage. Unfortunately, Marianne and Rula are excised completely. But, characters rarely leave a writer until their story is told in one way or another, so many they appear again someday. Until then, join them for dinner with Daniel and the dashing Captain Rassimov.



Deleted scene:



Helen arranged for a tuxedo and shirt to be delivered to Daniel’s room and it was just as well. He’d feel badly under dressed at the Captain’s table without it. Though it was not an official formal night, when all the passengers were obliged to wear their finest, those chosen to dine with the Captain had gone to town. The men al wore tuxedos while the women dazzled with their best gowns and jewellery.

Around half the people at their table of twelve recognised Daniel as soon as he sat down, and it was only a few more minutes until those unfamiliar with his name were brought up to speed. He dealt with it gamely to begin, but it soon became an ordeal to answer the same questions he was always asked.

What’s it like to be rich and famous?

“Believe me, I am neither of those things.” Sort of well-known and doing okay was not the answer most people wanted to hear.

What kind of car do you drive? Where do you have your houses? Have you met this or that celebrity?

Thankfully the Captain sensed his discomfort and drew their attention to himself at the top of the table. Daniel was grateful. He was paid by Royal Atlantic and had a duty to behave as they wanted while he was on the ship, he didn’t object to that, it was part of the job, but it could get weary, playing to the public all the time.

He knew other performers who refused to leave the crew areas of the ship when they were not working. He would never be that stuck up.

The novelty of having him on the table soon wore off as the guests remembered the real honour was dinning with the Captain.

An honour for him too. He wouldn’t forget that.

There was a lot he could learn a lot from Captain Rassimov. His people skills were exception. As they exchanged names and got to know each other over glasses of chilled champagne, Rassimov made sure he spoke to and acknowledged everyone.

They were a diverse and interesting bunch of people. Mainly couples, though Daniel sat beside Rula and Marianne Hench, a mother and grown-up daughter from Devon. Rula was well on the way to becoming drunk, much to her daughter’s embarrassment, but a happy drunk – not causing any problems. Next along was Larry and Chuck, a fulsome American couple. Larry was black, Chuck white but they seemed completely alike in every other way. Both around fifty, they shared a cheeky sense of humour and often finished each other’s sentences.

Next to the Captain sat a very attractive young couple from England. In their late twenties, athletic and healthy, a picture-perfect model of a successful pair.

An older couple from Germany sat on the other side of Rassimov. They appeared a little overwhelmed by their surroundings and company, but enjoyed themselves just the same.

After the champagne, they were served with a fillet of sea bass with roasted cauliflower, pea puree and caper vinaigrette. The starter was paired with a glass of Chablis 1 er Cru. It was phenomenal.

“This is nice,” Rula Hench said, overlooking the food in favour of another helping of wine. Her mouth started to droop at the corner, suggesting she’d had a lot more to drink first appeared.

“Mother, eat something, please,” her daughter quietly implored.

“Try the sea bass,” Daniel encouraged. “It’s really special.”

“Oh, alright,” Rula said vehemently, picking up her fork. “Seeing as it’s you.” She winked.

The Captain told them about his early days at sea. As the first course plates were cleared away, Larry and Chuck asked Daniel is he’d ever played in Las Vegas. The answer was no. They’d been five times, they told everyone, to see Britney Spears.

“It’s become something of a pilgrimage,” Larry declared.

“He’s hoping Britney will cure his arthritis,” Chuck roared and the rest of the table laughed.

Main course was a confi beef with truffle jus, stuffed morels, curried brioche, beetroot jelly and smoked pate. It was served with a large glass of Cabernet Sauvignon. Daniel hadn’t eaten so well in a long time and the wine was among the finest he’d ever tasted. Better than the supermarket specials he bought at home. The beef was slow cooked to perfection, precisely how he liked it. Food snobs might despair but he couldn’t stand any kind of meat on his plate that was raw or bleeding.

Rula spilled some of her Cabernet across the table and when a waiter arrived to deal with the mess, she asked for another glass of Chablis instead.

“Mother, have some water,” Marianne insisted.

“I don’t want water. I want wine.”

Daniel took pity on the girl and tried to draw her into a conversation away from her mother. She was around twenty-five, pretty but for the worried expression on her face.

“Do you enjoy travelling by sea,” he asked.

“This is my first time,” she said, pushing her food around the plate. “It’s not like anything I’ve done before.”

Rula leaned across, her crepey bosom hanging low. “I booked the cruise with her father but he couldn’t come,” she jeered.

“Mother, Daniel doesn’t want to know about that.”

“Tell him why,” Rula said.

Poor girl. He could see she was embarrassed enough.

“Work commitments?” Daniel offered brightly.

“No, he’s in jail,” Rula said defiantly. “That’s why Marianne is on holiday with her mother. To make sure I don’t chuck myself over the side because my husband is a dirty bastard. A teacher who took photos of his pupils in the changing room. That’s what he did.”

Daniel put a gentle hand on top of Marianne’s. She was close to losing it.

“It’s okay,” he said softly.

“But she need not worry about me,” Rula pressed on undeterred. “I’m not going over board because the man I married turned out to be a pervert. No way.”

It was a conversation stopper. Around the table open faces stared at Rula in astonishment. The German couple must have understood most of it – they looked shocked enough. Even Captain Rassimov was lost for words.

“Did anyone see the show tonight?” Daniel asked at last. “I caught the act before dinner. He was really very funny.”



LINKS:

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Cover Reveal! Sinful Pleasures: An Anthology of Erotic Tales by Sinful Press (@sinfulpress)


Release date 20th August 2017.



Sinful Press welcomes you to lose yourself in Sinful Pleasures. 





Join us as we weave our way from mainstream erotic romance to surreal sex-filled dreamscapes and everything in between, created by some of the best new and established voices in the erotica genre. 



Janine Ashbless

Ella Scandal

Sonni de Soto

Jo Henny Wolf

Lily Harlem 

Lady Divine 

Gail Williams

Samantha MacLeod

Tony Fyler

Ellie Barker

Lisa McCarthy





Pre-order links:















Note: Sinful Pleasures will be available through all main online bookstores in print and digital on the 20th of August.







Excerpt from The Pier By Night by Janine Ashbless:



“What do you want to do now?” James asked, as they came level with another set of concrete stairs leading back up to the promenade. The question was lightly posed, but it seemed to carry an unconscionable weight. Maz looked sideways at him, rearranging the tickling strands of her hair back from her face one more time. Her body knew exactly what it wanted to do. Her body seemed to belong to some other personsomeone with no memory, no ties, no guilt. Somebody who had lived all her life here, in the sun, on the beach, far away from any home or husband.

How easy it would be to do something irrevocable. Something that would tear down their carefully ordered world.

“Do you think they’ve got an aquarium?” she heard herself ask. “I like them.”

“It’s a seaside town. Of course they’ve got an aquarium.”

They did.

***

Indoors, it was surprisingly quiet and empty. The sun must be keeping everyone else outside. After the blaring pop music of the pier and the excited children on the beach, the dimly-lit faux-rock tunnels, with their windows onto pellucid underwater landscapes, seemed like another planet.

Maz and James took their time. She hadn’t been kidding about how much she enjoyed displays like these. The glowing pools drew her, and the fact that James was beside her only heightened the sense of dreamlike intensity. He would touch her occasionallya hand on the small of her back, a finger brushing her wrist, the gentlest of clasps upon her upper arm as he pointed out a delicate seahorse among the reed grass. There was a quiet intimacy to it that made her shiver and blush and lose focus.

She could feel her whole body thrumming, as if she were lambent with arousal. 




Cover reveal organized by Writer Marketing Services

Friday, 7 July 2017

Anthem of the Sea: Deleted Scene #2


Today I’m back with another deleted scene from my new novel Anthem of the Sea. Last week I shared a flashback moment to when my lead character Daniel Blake, just sixteen, auditioned for the boyband Overload. This scene continues that flashback, charting the rise and fall of the band. I really enjoyed writing these flashbacks, but for the purpose of the story, they weren’t necessary. In the end, I was able to get Daniel’s backstory across in a more succinct manner, but I love this stuff.

My long-term goal has always been a write a novel about a closeted 1960s popstar, that will be full of flashbacks, musical references and period detail. I’ve been researching the era and stars of the day on and off for years. It’ll be an epic story. 600 hundred pages plus. I’m not quite ready to go there yet, but it won’t be long. It’s a story I have to write. It just won’t go away.

In the meantime, enjoy this trip back to the music scene of the early 2000s.

Enjoy.



My handwritten first draft of Anthem of the Sea



Deleted Scene #2



The following week, at Sam’s insistence, he moved into a three-bedroom semi-detached house with the other boys. Sam’s boy band had actually been formed six months earlier and they’d been living together all that time. They had already recorded the twelve songs that would make up their debut album. Their first single would have been out by now, except Sam had sacked their lead vocalist three weeks earlier.

“The kid was a nightmare. I had to get rid of him before it was too late.”

“What? So I’m just a replacement?” Daniel couldn’t believe what he was hearing. He was on his way to meet the rest of the boys for the first time when Sam filled him in on their history.

“Don’t get precious about it. I could have put you at the front and got you to mime to the other fucker’s vocals. But I’m not gonna do that because you sound better than any of them. I want you singing lead vocals on all the tracks.”

“Those other guys are gonna hate me.” He felt really sick.

“Then you’ll just have to make them like you.”

Daniel had a week to pick up all twelve songs and record replacement lead vocals for the album. It was intense. As the newcomer, he expected the four original members, who were all a few years older, to hate him, but they were surprisingly cool about him joining.

“The other guy was a prize dick,” they told him over dinner one evening. “As long as you don’t turn into him, it’ll all be good.”

Ben, David, Christian, Luke and now Daniel were collectively known as Overload.

In the lead up to their single release, Sam sent them on an intense promotional schedule. They frequently performed two shows a night; school discos followed by late gay clubs. The set involved them performing high energy dance routines while miming three or four of their songs. Groomed as clean-cut boys next door, they were an immediate hit with their target audience.

The gay clubs were an eye opener for Daniel. He’d known since he was eleven that he was probably gay. He’d always fancied other boys but had yet to act on his desires. Now here he was, sixteen and still a virgin, being lusted over by horny men in the kind of clubs he’d only dreamed about.

Don’t fuck the fans,” Sam warned all the boys. “No groupies of either sex. If word gets out your glittering pop career will be over before it starts. The teeny boppers don’t want to hear about girlfriends or sex scandals. They want you for themselves. Good boys they can take home to the family. Maintain that illusion at all costs.”

Sam determined that Overload’s debut single would be a cover of ELO’s All Over the World. Daniel had doubts about the choice but didn’t dare voice them. The original was a classic. Their version was clunky and cheesier than fondue. It got the crowds going in the gay bars but that probably owed more to the atmosphere and alcohol than their song. He couldn’t understand how it would fit on the current pop charts. Tastes were changing again. Steps had already split and S Club weren’t having the kind of success they once enjoyed.

Sam was undeterred. They shot a video for All Over the World and performed the song on every TV show that would have them. The promotion schedule was insane. The boys would be up at 4.00 a.m. to perform their song on some TV breakfast show. Then they were onto a bus, travelling round all day to sing in schools and shopping malls before ending the day with a 1.00 a.m. nightclub PA.

Their effort gained little reward.

All Over the World entered the UK single chart at number seventeen. It fell to forty-nine in its second week and was off the chart by its third. The boys were devastated. Though Daniel had little faith in the track, but they had put so much into its promotion, flogging themselves twenty hours a day, it was a massive disappointment to see it flop.

The song fared marginally better abroad. When it broke into the top ten in Japan, a five day promotional tour was hurriedly put together. The work load in Japan was even more extreme than at home. While in the east, Daniel shared a room with band mate Christian, who at nineteen was the closest to his own age. When they came back to the UK, Daniel was no longer a virgin.

It was no big romance. Daniel liked Christian a lot, he was fun and good-looking, a great guy to be around.  But a buddy rather than his big first love. They came together out of curiosity and a mutual desire to experiment. Daniel felt safe with Christian. He trusted him. There was no one else he’d rather lose his virginity to. But there was no great passion there.

“Let me know if it hurts,” Christian said, breathing softly on his face as he eased his hard cock inside.

Daniel opened his legs wider and held Christian tight, breathing deeper, waiting for the pain. It never came. Christian took his time. He was tender and careful and used a lot of lube. He was experienced, recognising what was good and what to avoid. When Daniel came with Christian’s solid cock moving confidently inside him, the power of the orgasm rocked his entire body. It left him dizzy.

“My God. I never expected it to be like that,” he gasped.

Christian kissed him all over his face. “You have no idea how beautiful you are, do you? Your face when you came, I wish I’d taken a picture to remember it.”

Back in the UK, Overload shot a video for their second single and began the promotional cycle all over again. Summertime of Love was another upbeat, cheesy pop song with a manic dance routine.

It failed to make the top forty.

Undeterred Sam Leferve pushed on with the album release. The songs were already recorded so why the hell not? The album was preceded by a new single. Sam took no chances with this one. The release would be a double A-side aimed straight at the Christmas party market. They had a change of pace on one song, a wintery ballad called The Coldest Season, while its counterpart was a ramped up cover version of 10cc’s Things We Do for Love with additional sleigh bells added to the mix.

“A drippy love and a tremendous party anthem. This cannot fail,” Sam said confidently. “Christmas number one, here we come.”

The single manged a slight gain on its predecessor, making number thirty in December. Their album, Overloaded, released the same month, failed to chart.

By his eighteenth birthday, Daniel’s dreams of pop stardom were over. Overload lost their record and management deals and the band fell apart.

“Bad luck, kid,” Sam told him over the phone. “That’s the way these things go. It’s a shit business when it doesn’t go your way. You’ll get over it. You’re young enough. Besides, I think you’ve got something. I really fucking do. Don’t give up.”




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Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Blog Tour: The Tryst by Monique Roffey


Today I'm lucky to be joined by author Monique Roffey, who has dropped by to talk about her new novel The Tryst.




Ten Things I Know About Sex Guest blog by Monique Roffey

Author of The Tryst (Dodo Ink) £8.99

 1.      Women don’t beg for sex because we’re hard to please and we’re hard to please because our sexuality calls for a more intimate way of relating during sexual lovemaking. Sure, a hard fuck can clear the air, can be exciting, but generally, we need a heart connection during sex. Head, heart and yoni are connected, in most women. We aren’t split off. We don’t compartmentalize sex and love.


2.      Women are genernally monogamous. Sure bone fide poly women exist, and I admire them greatly, in their ethics and their ardour. But most, of us, I’d say, have a heart that’s made for loving only one other, or at least one at a time.

3.      PIV (penis in vagina) sex, as a means of pleasing women, is a lie. A woman’s centre of pleasure lies in her clitoris, not in the walls of her vagina. To be on the receiving end of a man thrusting a way for many minutes can be not only painful, but boring.


4.      Men really want to please women. They mostly need a woman who really knows herself to show them how.


5.      One significant, and little discussed, difference between men and women is sleep. We all go through several sleep patterns every night, which includes REM (rapid eye movement) in which we dream and are paralysed. During REM, men, all men, get an erection. Yes, several times a night, sleep arouses them. Hence men, most men, wake up with a boner, a cockstand; every morning. This can be welcome or unwelcome for most women. It’s a big difference in our sexuality. Men want to fuck first thing in the morning, every morning. Do we?


6.      Oxytocin. Don’t get me started. This is the chemical which bonds families and couples. We women secrete more of it than men. It’s the reason why, after an intimate encounter, we already feel loved and up men don’t. Because we secrete this chemical in much great quantities. Women need to know this, and take note. It is the biggest reason why the playing field around sex isn’t even. Oxytocin. We tend to love more and openly and easily than men and we need to take care of ourselves if we wish to be successful lovers and be successfully promiscuous.  


7.      Bliss. We seek sex for moments of bliss. And moments of bliss elevate us and we touch the Divine. Sexual seekers, like me, aren’t necessarily seeking sex, but a connection to the Divine.


8.      A great erotic love can strike at any time in our lives. I know, now, that it also takes a great amount of skill and maturity to maintain and withstand this type of love.


9.      Eros is a trickster. You are stuffed if he strikes you with his arrow. Reason is left behind. You will be in for a bumpy ride. Get help.


10.  You will love again after a great love has passed. You will heal, get over it, and learn, and the next time your heart opens and you sex again, you will be a little more careful. We get better and managing sexual love affairs, not worse. We grow, we learn, and we are always ready to do it again.




The Tryst, (Dodo Ink)

extract


Before lunch we had sex again on the kitchen floor. Quickly, this time, me riding him. Oh, I like to be on top, to be the domina, the one who hostesses the show, who stages all the stunts with human males. I am the party thrower, the orgy mistress. I gave him a good fuck, massaging his cock with the muscles of my cunt, and the energy of him rose upwards through me and lit me up. This Bill was made to fit me and I was made to fit him; somehow I’d stumbled across him, this Adam. At first glance he was just a primary model: Husband, Father, the Average White English Male. Homme Vanille. Marks and Spencer Man. Nothing remarkable. Nicely castrated by the middle class feminists, cured of any alpha tendencies. He had been trained not to be dominant. Isn’t that what feminism has done, it has laughed the alpha males out of town. Masculinity is in crisis, say the clever ones these days. Feminism equalised women in the workplace and put men in the shed, where I found Bill. The male alpha doms went underground, thousands of them, to Internet fetish sites and their private dungeons and the like. There, many of my sistren operate, daemon-killers like me. Professional Dommes. Strangulators, ball kickers. Experts in humiliation, bestiality, fucking men up the ass with their strap-ons. Torturing testicles till they turn blue. We Lilatha exist in the shadows, in the twilight; we are around if you look for us. Many men do, those who like to submit. And they keep quiet when they find us. Few imps, like me, stalk the pavements in full view. That’s my kink, to fuck The Innocents, men like Bill. I like to dominate Mr Everyday.

        And yet, as I had happily discovered, Bill had secret charms and abilities after all. My assessment had been wrong. I rode Bill hard, forging a twinned ecstasy between us. We groaned and writhed, both of us dying afterwards. I laughed with glee, at how Bill gasped for breath. “You’re lovely,” he gasped. I licked my fingers, tasting his bitter-salt cum. “So are you,” I winked. “Feed me now, I’m starving.”

        Lunch was delicious and replenishing. We fell on fruit and gooey chocolate cake and ice cream and opened a bottle of red wine. I put on one of his vinyl jazz records and danced around naked. I’ll stay one more hour, I told myself. One more hour, just one. Janey-Wife has gone, this house is mine and we still want to fuck. I am not yet sated. Greedy thing I was, greedy for his cock. Bill couldn’t keep his eyes off me, he was entangled – miserably unsure of himself. Distant and yet high on that fuck-chemical of serotonin. It was coursing through him. It was like watching a new drug addict and any minute I might have to catch him from slumping to the floor. He was lust-drunk. But I wasn’t. I’d provoked this altered state in men many times before; I had left many husbands in this condition. Usually I fled well before this point. But I was still enjoying myself, still very much the sprite.

        I danced naked for a while. Human men love to watch women dance in the nude and very few modern human women do. It is a dead art, relegated to the dim caverns and glossy tables of the lap dancing club. Burlesque strip-joints. Once, it was an art of the courtly harem and the well-paid hetaera; once it was part of Bohemia, of a social stratum of free thinkers and free lovers. Men have danced naked too, for women and other men. There is a long tradition of the Lust Arts. I find this an omission on the part of modern womankind as naked dancing puts men in a state of awe and gratitude. The Wife won’t do it, never did. Oh, human women divide their nature. Mother. Wife. Whore. They do not integrate. Good girls and bad. Few celebrate that they are both. So there I was rubbing myself and licking my lips, caressing my breasts, my hips, sliding my hand down between my legs. It was an act, a naked tease. This was one of my many carnival tricks. I have worked in burlesque clubs, learnt the art of grinding and wriggling, stripping off stockings, gloves. Doing what American strippers call ‘ass work’, removing strings of pearls from my pussy. I have a strong muscular vagina, able to pulse and milk my men. But I do not possess the agility of hookers in the bars and lap dancing clubs of the Orient. I cannot shoot ping-pong balls across the room. I surprised Bill with three small but succulent beetroot I had found in the fridge, already peeled and boiled. I dripped the purple ink over my quim, inserting them one by one, dancing them up and in. He laughed out loud and clapped for me and I took a bow. He knelt for me and ate as I released each soft warm beet into his mouth.

        More, he whispered.

        And I complied, oh, with cucumbers and carrots and the like. Bill was rock hard throughout. I loved his cock, thick and uncircumcised. The tip glistened. At one point, I knelt in front of Bill and took his balls into my mouth and swirled them round. He trusted me more with his jewels this time. He poured wine over my face and I drank and sucked and his cock was huge and solid and he stroked himself and dripped cum over my face, rubbed it into my hair. Then he was sitting on a counter top, his jeans unbuckled, his thighs bare, his cock like a tower. Me on tiptoe, with my mouth all over him, my head bobbing, all the while kneading his scrotum and his hand reaching down, stroking me, catching the drips. Then, his body juddered, as if Aphrodite herself was stroking the kundalini up from his genitals and up his back. His cum flew in hot spurts, white and pearly, splattering his stomach, the fruit bowl, everywhere. And I came too, my cum cascaded like a torrent to the floor, not a cupful, as usual, but a warm wave fell from that secret reservoir. Like I had urinated, except it was translucent and salt-sweet to taste. And with this release, I began to feel altered. I shouldn’t be here; I should have left. Bill reached down and cupped the small of my back as I shuddered. My orgasm swamped us both. I looked up at Bill and saw his eyes glittering. Oh Christ, he whispered. I could see that he had recognised me. I was Wife No 1. My cover was blown. It was then I whispered my real name to him in my language and he nodded.



The Tryst By Monique Roffey
Blurb
London, midsummer night. Jane and Bill meet the mysterious Lilah in a bar. She entrances the couple with half-true, mixed up tales about her life. At closing time, Jane makes an impulsive decision to invite Lilah back to their home. But Jane has made a catastrophic error of judgment, for Lilah is a skilled and ruthless predator, the likes of which few encounter in a lifetime. Isolated and cursed, Jane and Bill are forced to fight for each other, and, in doing so, discover their covert desires.

Part psychological thriller, part contemporary magical realism, The Tryst revisits the tale of Adam’s first wife, Lilith, to examine the secrets of an everyday marriage.

Praise for The Tryst

“What makes The Tryst an unexploded virus isn’t just the quality and brightness of Roffey’s writing on sex, even as it uncovers inner glades between flesh and fantasy where sex resides – but the taunting clarity of why those glades stay covered. A throbbing homewrecker of a tale, too late to call Fifty Shades of Red.”

DBC Pierre, Booker Prize winner


BIOG

Monique Roffey is an award-winning Trinidadian-born writer. Her novels have been translated into five languages and short-listed for major awards includingthe Orange Prize, Costa Fiction Award, Encore Award, Orion Award and the OCM Bocas Award for Caribbean Literature. In 2013, Archipelago won the OCM BOCAS Award for Caribbean Literature. Her memoir, With the Kisses of his Mouth, was published in 2011. She is a Lecturer on the MFA in the Novel at Manchester Metropolitan University. She divides her time between the East end of London and Port of Spain, Trinidad.



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Instagram: @MoniqueRoffey