Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A Big Welcome Back to Kay Berrisford!!

Oh, I’ve got a treat for you all today. There’s a reason I keep inviting her back, and it’s not just because she’s incredibly organized when she sends me her posts, whereas every time I go to her blog I’m a total slob and mess up all her nice clean counter tops. Ladies and gentlemen, Kay Berrisford is here with a sweet, daring, kinky book called BAD SLAVE, which I harassed her into letting me beta read. Welcome back, Kay!

1. Tell us about your new release!
Bad Slave is a BDSM love story set in a fantasy universe (the realm of Galataan) where the rule of the king is absolute. The current king, Lyam, just happens to have an appetite for pretty, male sex slaves, and what the king wants the king gets.

Jay and Alix, our heroes, become embroiled in the machinations of Lyam’s court, as a reluctant slave trainer and his slave respectively. The story explores the awakenings of their true desires as a Dom and his sub, while they learn to resist Lyam’s increasingly cruel demands and fall in love. Though, of course, defying the king is going to get them in a *lot* of trouble…

So, there’s a lot of spanking, bondage, dildos, sword fights and rescues, and a fair bit of angst… but ultimately it’s a romance. Jay and Alix both have a lot of heart, and I hope their story does too.
Just an aside on the title… Bad Slave. That was originally just the working title but a couple of people (one of whom might or might not have been J.A.Rock!) told me they’d like to read a book with that name… and hey, so did I. On realizing it wasn’t *just* me who liked it, I kept it!


2.  I was lucky enough to get to beta read most of this one (I STILL DON’T KNOW HOW IT ENDS!!). It’s so fun! What sparked the idea? And what made you want to keep going with it? (Besides my incessant demands that you “Do the one about the librarian and the slave.” J)

I had to joggle my memory to remember this, but I first dreamed up the original scenario—a former warrior sent out to fetch a sex slave for his king and ending up picking the worst possible guy—walking home in the rain one night. It was over two years back and just a little daydream to cheer me up. I’d played with the characters in my head ever since.

Then after I’d told you (J.A.) the idea last year and you told me to write it—and, frankly, I like being told to do things —it was my love for the characters that kept me going. In fact, this was one of my most joyful writing experiences, probably because of that. I’m still in love with Alix and Jay, and would like to revisit them some day.

So why do I love them? I’ve compared Alix elsewhere to a modern speed freak…but, to be honest, that’s not really a comparison that needs to be made, because he *is* a speed freak. When we first meet him it in the book, he’s careering downhill at breakneck speed in one of his inventions in order to impress his mates…which all goes horribly wrong, of course. Being a pain slut is part and parcel of the same sense of adventure, though his thrill-seeking nature also means he’s constantly getting into trouble in the authoritarian world he lives in. And when he ends up as a royal sex slave… well, it’s only going to go badly till he finds the right Dom to take him in hand.

Oh, I’m waffling now. I’d better not go so much about Jay, apart from to say—what’s not to love about a warrior-turned-librarian-turned-reluctant!Dom?

Nothing. Nothing is not to love.

3.  This one seems to have more of a formal BDSM element in it than your historicals. Was this harder or easier to write than the kink in your past books?

In some ways, it was a lot easier. As we’ve chatted about before on this blog, in most (though not all) historical cultures, shared knowledge of BDSM as an acceptable practice simply didn’t exist, so activities such as spanking for pleasure/pain have to evolve organically from the story and/or the chemistry between the characters.  In my fantasy realm of Galataan, I could import some of the modern rules and practices of BDSM to the king’s court and harem— though Jay and Alix still have a fair bit to learn as they’re thrown in at the deep end.

4. If you could go back in time and do some ye olde BDSM, what era would you choose and what would be your pervertibles of choice?

Haha, I’d stay here, in the realm of roleplay, safewords, and clean and easily-available lube. I’m a coward.

But, if I was a little more adventurous… well, I’d fancy a bit of Victorian kink. Tightly-laced corsets and canes have a great appeal, and I’d love to have a snoop around Victorian England too. Mind you, fun back then might be pricey. Victorian dildos cost over £2, which is over $200 in modern money, though their sex manuals advise carriage candles can do a good job if funds are tight, and of course, you can use the rest of the box for some hot wax play. Hurrah!

Crog, bring me my time machine!

5. At one point while I was reading I compared the tone of BAD SLAVE to Dickens. It seemed to me to have that same kind of madcap dark humor combined with vivid characters and dastardly deeds, plus a real tenderness between the MCs. I hope that was a flattering comparison and that you don’t, like, hate Charles Dickens or anything. For future reference, what author would you most want to be compared to and why?

Oh, I’ll take Charles Dickens, thank you very much! I’m actually quite a fan, though like with the films of Steven Spielberg (er, yeah, I have a weird connection between those two in my head) I’m not always into the small boy POV and sometimes find the sentiment a bit mawkish. But otherwise, I like Dickens. His descriptions are breathtaking, and I like the humor usually. I’ve read his complete works, save Little Dorrit (long story, but I can’t be bothered with that one.)

Who else would I like to be compared to? At the risk of sounding a tad sycophantic—though I bloody well mean it—I’d love to be compared to Lisa Henry or J.A. Rock one day! There are several other fabby m/m writers I’d kill to be compared to as well. Sarah Waters or Hilary Mantel would be awesome too.

Holy crap, Sara Waters YES!! Would give anything to be compared to Sara.

6. You’ve written a few short stories as well as novels. What are the challenges of writing a short story versus a novel? Do you prefer one form over the other?

Overall, I prefer novels. I was terrified to write a short story till recently, as I wasn’t sure if I could pull it off. Fundamentally, you have to do the same things—character arc, conflict, beginning, middle, and end—in way less words, and that’s pretty damned tough. I hope in my couple of efforts so far, I’ve more or less pulled it off, but you have way less time to win over and satisfy a reader.

7. Finally, what’s on deck?

Plenty! I’m going to be announcing my second full-length novel of the year over at my blog pretty soon. All I can say for now is that it’s contracted to a publisher, and it’s about a merman and a pirate. It’s got less BDSM than my last few books, but plenty of captive kink. I’m also working on my first contemporary m/m story (no paranormal and no BDSM – sorry!) and when that’s done, I’ve got a sci-fi/shifter/prison story in the works, which I need to finish and that should be a lot of high-stress fun.

Merman, now, please. Need all of these!

If you folks enjoy Bad Slave, I’m brainstorming ideas for a sequel, which will focus on King Lyam and what happens to him after the events in the first story. Chances are, it will be darker than the first book and the BDSM might get a little more hardcore. I’d like to check in on Alix and Jay again too, but we’ll see how things go. So, basically, I’m flying off in lots of different directions, hopefully learning as I go about what readers want to read and improving in the art of delivering entertainment. I love to write, but I also love to please J

Thank you so much for being here, Kay! See below for details on BAD SLAVE and Kay’s giveaway!

Bad Slave by Kay Berrisford. Published by Loose Id. Genre: LGBTTQ, BDSM & Fetish, Fantasy & Paranormal.

Blurb: When the king commands former war hero Captain Jay Ghair to find him the perfect royal sex slave, Jay’s quiet new life as a librarian is shattered. Jay discovers the boy he’s looking for in Alix, a lowly miner and wannabe court scientist, whom Jay can’t help but secretly adore. However, teaching the rebellious Alix to be a docile slave is difficult. Alix will behave for just one man, and it isn’t the king. It’s Jay.

Standing by while the king’s treatment of Alix becomes cruel is torturous for Jay. He longs to return to his library, yet he can’t bear to leave Alix, or his people, unprotected. To rescue Alix—and save the realm from the increasingly tyrannical king—Jay must confront the demons of his military past and take up the sword again. But his most important battle must be won through returning Alix’s love and learning to master this bad slave who submits only for him.


Twitter: @kayberrisford

GIVEAWAY TIME!!! If you'd like to win your choice of two of my Greenwood novels Bound for the Forest or Bound to the Beast) in ebook or paperback plus a $10 GC CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Giveaways Galore!

Want to win a copy of MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA? There are lots of opportunities. For instance, you could go one post down and take the Pledging Prescott quiz to find out which MARK COOPER character you're most like. If you leave your result in a comment, you'll be entered in a drawing to win!

You could also go to Sid Love, where Lisa Henry and I were interviewed about our writing process, coming of age kink, and how we spent our birthdays. Leave a comment on the interview for a chance to win.

You can also go to Boy Meets Boy Reviews, where we tell the story behind Blake (and Mark)! Comment to be entered in the giveaway.

AND you can head over to Joyfully Jay tomorrow for "The Making of Mark Cooper." We'll show you a picture of a bear-themed porta-potty. Leave a comment for a chance to win.

So there you go! Free stuff!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Which MARK COOPER Character Are You? Take the Quiz and Win!

So my lovely co-writer Lisa Henry made some awesome things in honor of MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA, which comes out in just a few hours. She made the Prescott College crest:

And she made this quiz to help you figure out which Prescott fraternity you're best suited for.

So put on the sorting hat, find out where you belong, and let us know your result in the comments section of either of our blogs, or via FB or twitter! You'll be entered in a drawing to win a copy of the book.

Happy Australia Day

Okay, Australia Day was actually yesterday! And who knows what day it was in the actual hemisphere where Australia is.

To celebrate, here is a koala I met in Australia named Ray Charles.

Head over to Lisa's blog for an Australia Day surprise--the recipe for lamingtons, which are DELICIOUS.

Congrats to the winner of the MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA giveaway, Will! And thanks to everyone who participated. If you missed out on this giveaway, we've got more for you, starting tomorrow! Tomorrow, of course being the MARK COOPER release day.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Welcome to the Wild, Wild West

Two days until the release of MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA, and you're invited to fraternity Alpha Delta Phi's Wild West Party! Make out in the Kissin' Shack or ride the mechanical bull. Artwork courtesy of MC Blackman, whose gallery of book art can be visited here.

Tomorrow is Australia Day, which means you still have time to enter the MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA giveaway! Just tell us via PM on FB, Twitter, or e-mail what Deacon's middle name is, and you could win a copy of the book.

Friday, January 24, 2014

The End of The Thing is Nigh--Answer to Win!

Thanks to everyone who’s been following our blogs for the past week. Here it is -- the question we’ve all been waiting for! The easiest way to find the answer is to backtrack through our blogs. The answer might be on either J.A.’s blog or Lisa’s blog.

What is Deacon’s middle name?

Answer correctly, and you can win a copy of MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA (coming out Jan 28 from Loose Id).

To answer, send either of us a PM on Facebook, or via Twitter, or email either of us! (I'm jarockauthor at gmail dot com).

At some point we’ll synchronis/ze our watches, throw all the names in a hat, and draw a winner!
Watch this space and we’ll announce the winner on Australia Day.

(For those of you playing from the northern hemisphere -- that’s on January 26.)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Thing: Mark & His Mum

Welcome back to The Thing, where Lisa Henry and I give away a copy of Mark Cooper versus America (available January 28) to one astute reader who keeps abreast of all the character related stuff we post on our blogs and answers a tricky question TOMORROW, January 24th. You can find details here. We'll be posting texts between the characters, excerpts from Prescott's student newspaper, characters' homework assignments and more!

Today we've got a few more texts between Mark and his mum. Well, I've got one--Lisa's got a couple more!

Are you all ready for tomorrow? Keeping up with all these crazy characters? Tomorrow on our blogs, we'll ask you a question, and if you answer it correctly, you could win a copy of the book!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Thing: Deacon's Mom

Welcome back to The Thing, where Lisa Henry and I post extras for MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA, then, on the 24th, invite you to answer a quiz question for a chance to win a copy of the book!

Today you're meeting the moms. Deacon's mom, Helen has severe OCD. Her germ phobia and constant fear that her children are going to die in some horrible accident interfere both with her quality of living and Deacon's. Her main worry is for her older son, Ben, who's fighting in Afghanistan. To help her out, Deacon drives home from college every weekend to keep her company and reassure her that nothing terrible is going to happen. But his sense of obligation to his mother prevents him from having a social life at college.

Here's an e-mail exchange between Helen and her friend Lin.

And here's Helen texting Deacon.

Head over to Lisa's blog to meet Mark's mum. She's a hoot!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Thing: Yoga Pants

Welcome to The Thing, where Lisa Henry and I share extras from our upcoming book, MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA, and then ask you a question on the 24th. If you answer correctly, you could win a copy of the book! Details here. 

Last night you met Blake. And a few days ago you met MCs Mark and Deacon. Here's Blake texting Mark about Alpha Delta's biggest party of the year:

So Mark decides to extend the invite to Deacon...

Head over to Lisa's for more!

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Thing: It's Blake O' Clock

Tonight on The Thing, you're meeting a MARK COOPER character who's very special to Lisa and me. Blake is a football player and a member of Alpha Delt. He's not, um...not the brightest. But he's a nice guy, even if he does have a tendency to get stuck in bathrooms. Frequently. For Blake, football is life, but when he's assigned to be Mark's big brother at the fraternity, he finds he kind of likes the gig.

Here, Blake is struggling with an English essay he wrote about his trouble with bathrooms.

Hey Alpha Delts,
Coach says I gotta pull my English grade up or I can’t play next semester. Could someone look this essay over for me? Mark, little bro, maybe you could have your genus boyfriend read it and tell me what to fix? Oh, the topic is: “Pick something you would consider yourself an expert in and explain it to someone who’s never done it before.” I was gonna do football, but like 5 people were doing it already so I’m trying to be orginal.

Blake Dawson
EN 103
Professor Studdard
12 November 2013

How to Get Out of a Bathroom if You Are Trapped in One
By Blake Dawson
So you’re stuck in a bathroom? That is never good. Maybe it’s a public bathroom with a weird lock. Maybe it’s a friends house and the door doesn’t work right. Or maybe it’s a porta-john, those are just plain tricky. Luckily there is hope. I have been stuck in a surprisingly lot of bathrooms, so maybe I am just the expert to get you out. Just follow these simple instructions.
  1. Don’t panic. Just like on the field, if you panic, your gonna make mistakes. Take a deep breath. You will get out of this shithole eventually, lol.
  2. Observe your surroundings. If you observe, you are more likely to see a solution. Observation can be done many ways, like with your five senses. The most important are your eyes, because they will help you see how the door works. Also your sense of touch is good, because you may need to break the door down. Depending on whether you have gone number 1 or number 2, you may not want to use your sense of smell too much!!!
  3. Try the door handle. There is a variety on types of door handles. Some different kinds are: knob, lever, and crashbar (Wikipedia 1). See if you can recognize which type of handle you are dealing with. For example, if it is a lever, try pushing it up or down. If it is the kind with the button you push in, that button will pop out if you turn the handle. Maybe you just forgot to unlock the door and that is a simple solution that will help you get out of the bathroom quickly and easely.
  4. Break the door down. This is only for emergencies if you cannot work the handle. It is the fun part, but you will also have to think about safety or you could damage yourself as well as the door. Make sure you use you’re dominant leg and deliver a very powerful sidekick right below the knob. Repeat this until the door busts opens (eHow).
  5. Teamwork. Sometimes life is a team effort. Like if you are in a jam on the field and suddenly one of your teammates is there it is just like if Jesus appeared because it feels like a miracle. But also it is just what teammates are for.  To help you out. This happens in a fraternity too where your brothers all look out for you and have your back. So let’s say you are trapped in the bathroom at a party and one of your brothers is at the party too. If you can signal him, then maybe you can work together to get you out. He pushes on the door and you pull, or depending on how the door works. Teamwork is very important in all areas of life. It is the foundation of this great country. Because without the teamwork of our founding fathers, we would all be playing SOCCER!!! Which according to many sources myself included, is very boring (Dawson).
  6. Sue Whoever Did This to You. This would be rare but if someone locks you in a bathroom on purpose and won’t let you out, I have checked with my law school friend on this and you can sue the person for attempted kidnapping. I would recomend this because holding someone against there will is very serious crime and there would be emotional damage as well because it is very embarrassing trust me to be stuck in a bathroom. People need to learn that even if they are playing a joke it might be emotionally distrustful! Unless it is your fraternity brothers doing it in which case pranks are just a normal part of living with the guys. But if a stranger locks you in a bathroom that’s just not funny.
  7. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Bad things happen to everyone, and maybe you are a smart person but just these things happen. So don’t sweat it, don’t panic, and once you are out, move on with your life. But also remember what you learned because it might help you if you are stuck again someday.
Good luck, and don’t forget to wash your hands!

And here is Blake texting a football pal:

And a small portion of Simon D'Angelo's article on Blake...

Now head on over to Lisa's to meet one scary dude... Alpha Delt pledge trainer Bengal! Could it be the very same Bengal who's fraternity was recently involved in this riot? Tell us about it, Simon...

Keep watching this blog and Lisa's for more of The Thing, from now until January 24. On the 24th, we'll ask you a question based on all the extras we've been posting, and if you answer correctly, you could win a copy of MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Thing: Meet Jackson

You probably know the drill. You keep reading the extras Lisa Henry and I post as part of The Thing, and you could win a copy of MARK COOPER VERSUS AMERICA! If you're just joining us and don't know the drill, you can read about it here!

Today, you're meeting Jackson Philips, Mark's step cousin. He's been charged by his Uncle Jim, Mark's stepdad, with helping Aussie Mark make friends at school. Jackson's not super into this.

Student Snapshot

By Simon d'Angelo, Sophomore Staff Reporter

This week’s Student Snapshot is Jackson Phillips. Jackson is a Junior. He’s currently the treasurer of the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity. He is also the cousin of last week’s featured student, Mark Cooper.

Sd’A: Where do you see yourself in ten years?

JP: I’m not sure. I don’t think anyone could know where they’ll be in ten years. I’d like to be living and working in a major city, and have a nice paycheck. Also, just to clarify, Mark’s my step cousin.

Sd’A: You’re an urban planning major. What’s a nice guy like you doing in a fraternity like Alpha Delta Phi?

JP: What the [edited] does that mean?

Sd’A: Your fraternity’s got a reputation for giving parties precedence over academics.

JP: So what?

Sd’A: Anything interesting on Alpha Delt’s agenda this semester?

JP: Yeah, we’ve got the Wild West party coming up. Should be huge. We’re bringing in a mechanical bull. Invites just went out.

Sd’A: I was thinking more along the lines of community service activities.

JP: We’ve got the food drive in November.

Sd’A: But you mentioned the party first. So you consider it more important?

JP: What is this, Hardball? Didn’t you almost get fired last year when you interviewed the dean and asked about his alleged affair?

Sd’A: You’re currently Alpha Delt’s treasurer. Any plans to run for president?

JP: No.

Sd’A: Thank you for your time.

JP: Yeah, thanks.

Here's Jackson's text convo with Uncle Jim:

And head over to Lisa's house to meet Brandon!