Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Readers & Dreamers Series! Join Me in Welcoming Sara Ella to my blog with "Reading and Living"!

Join me in welcoming Sara Ella to my blog for the Readers & Dreamers Series! Sara is an awesome reader and her post captures the very essence of why we read books. Thank you for joining us today, Sara! It's a great pleasure to have you here!

Reading and Living

As I sit in my reading chair, soft lamplight overhead, mp3 playing a bouncy guitar piece in my ear, and a glass of chilled Cabernet on the small table nearby, everything is in place for me to start my new, very anticipated, adventure. As you can tell, I do not stand atop skyscraper I-beams or scale vertical bluffs to find that adrenaline rush. My search for excitement involves the impossible, improbable, the fantastic, and the occasional mostly realistic story. More than plot and characters, I seek the storyteller who can transport me to another place, transcending time, wringing my heart and bending my thoughts enough that when I reach the final line, and even days after the tale is read I am still captivated by strong emotions and my life perception changed.

A year ago or more, while on the Dreamspinner Press website, I was captivated by a beautiful cover. What a cover! The pretty young man that graced the cover of this new book Omorphi had instantly caught my attention and it was done! I ordered the paperback and downloaded the ebook too. YAY! With my iPad, Omorphi on the screen, so excited, I began to read. 

Absorbed by the story unfolding, all my rapid-fire thoughts were focused on the words before me. I seemed to travel to a deeper state. There is a Greek word for this: Ekstasis. On a fundamental level I connected to the adventure being toldholding onto each scene within my mind, I was transported into the lives of Christy and Michael. I felt their wonder at discovering each other and their fears. These guys were in my life just as much as I was in theirs. And I knew at this point that I found a master story teller. 

The joy of reading a really good book is that the story stays inside you with all of the powerful feelings it inspired lingering long after the book is finished. Above all, Omophi gave me a sense of hope. 

As I chased through the days of my real life, my mind reflected upon Michael and Christy. Brave Christy set the example of facing his fears and not giving up. Michael is the perfect model of a high school kid with a huge heart, and Jake, my absolute favorite, is the best of best friends. Omorphi left me with those good vibes and with a new perspective as I could then envision a new, positive path in my own life. 

Eventually I received my paperback of Omorphi, a nice surprise in the mail, and just had to share an image of my new book, still partially in the packaging, with online friends. Cody, at that time, offered to send an autographed vellum to me and I felt so lucky. I put his vellum autograph in matt and frame.


My pursuit of great stories has affected my life on many levels. Often, I connect with authors and readers online and I find that this community truly promotes open-mindedness and awareness as well as inspiring more good reading. There are not many things more exciting than to receive notices of new books releases, including audiobooks, from my favorite authors and new writers too. If only I could read faster! I envy reviewers this talent. Really, can life be any better than when you receive an email letting you know that you’ve won an e-book or audiobook??? With all my wonderful online friends reading and sharing truly great stories, I feel like I found my place and, finally, the feeling that perhaps it is okay to just be... me

Omorphi does that. It is a great story with an abundance of hope for everyone. Last Spring, the second book, Tharros, came out and continued with the lives of Christy and Michael. The ending just about takes my breath away, and is as powerful as the ending in Omorphi. Now, I can’t wait for Elpida which is coming soon... RIGHT CODY? (no pressure) I really look forward to the continued lives of Christy and Michael and perhaps another explosion or two. 

In the end, I just want to say thank you

Thank you fellow reader friends! Thank you wonderful authors who touch our lives in soo many ways to count, and especially a huge THANK YOU to you, Cody, for your expert storytelling, positive spirit and beautiful heart. I can't wait to see you all at Gay Rom Lit Retreat!

Thank YOU, Sara, for your incredible post, but mostly for simply being your beautiful you! You are a true Reader and Dreamer! 

Sara hails from the state of Wisconsin. She is a wife, mother, banker, and reviewer who lives a quiet life reading. She is also an incredible wood-worker and bestowed my three crazy parrots with custom swings! Her FAVORITE thing to do is curl up with a good book surrounded by peace and quiet. You can find Sara on Facebook

These are the perches she made for my parrots, Kismet, Cleo, and Schnapps!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Timmy's Review of Ethan by Ryan Loveless

First, I want to thank everyone who is reading this. I haven’t done a review in a while because life as a teenager is way more busy then I thought it would be. So, it is an awesome special thing for me to get this request.

I loved the adult version of this book. I did not reread it or my review of it before reading the young adult version and writing this review because I wanted my review to be impartial to this book. Every book has its own qualities and I worried that I would see only what I wanted to see because I loved the adult version so much. Unfortunately, I have a great memory when it comes to books, so I may have remembered too much. I feel that may have hindered my impartial judgment. Please keep that in mind when reading this review. Because I’m a reviewer who wants you to form your own opinions, I will not give specifics about events in the story. No spoilers.

Ethan is the young adult version of Ethan, Who Loved Carter. I have a few Pros and Cons to go over with this book. But first, let me say I loved this story as much as I did the adult version.

I think one of the problems I have when an author converts a book from adult to Young Adult, or the other way around, is that they tend to leave too much of the original story in it. It’s almost like plagiarizing your own book. If you're going to do that, you want to be sure it fits the characters.

Carter was, at times, behaving older than you would expect. Even with him struggling to live with Tourette, he seemed old for his age. I didn’t see much difference between the older him and the younger him. This is a problem only if you have a hard time thinking a teen can act like an adult. Often, people say I act too old for my age. *shrugs* It is what it is, but if you are a person who doesn’t believe a teen can make mature decisions and do mature things, this book may not be for you. My issue wasn’t so much with Carter as it was with his parents. I didn’t feel the amount of leeway they gave him was normal. This is a bit problematic because I haven’t had a normal childhood so far. So, I asked around. It was generally said between my friends that they would love to have these kinds of parents, and yet they don’t think they are realistic. I think I understand why the author wrote them the way she did. I believe it was to keep some of the same situations from the first book in this one. I loved how the author really showed how hard life was for Carter and that even though he has a condition that would make him stand out, he is loved deeply. There are people who look at Carter and see Carter not Tourette’s.

I loved that she kept Ethan the same. He is the same age and goes through the same things. I like this because his story is an important one. Brain damage does not mean you can’t have thoughts, feelings, and emotions. It often means you have these things, and feel them MORE than an average person. You still want love and relationships. The world is scary and change is worse. Ethan has a very black and white way to look at things. I’m similar to this but have learned to see more grey in the last few years. Ethan will never get the grey areas to life. He is constantly matching what you say with the way it is said and the facial expressions you use. I truly understand this part of his processing, and like Ethan it is hard for me to get what is said. I love Ethan. I want to hug him and tell him how he encourages me to see how everyone has hardships in life. He teaches me that my life could have been much harder than it is. Not worse, because I don’t believe Ethan has a bad life, he just has a harder life.

So, I give this book 4 Marbles. It brings a lot of much needed hope to the lives of the readers and I thank the author for that.~Timmy
Ethan is out October 20th! Preorder Ethan now
About Ethan

Carter Stevenson is looking forward to a fresh start in a new high school on the other side of the country. It’ll give him a chance to escape his reputation for twitching and stuttering. He’ll have the summer to himself in his new home in California, and in the fall, he won’t get involved in any activity that puts his Tourette’s center stage. He won’t stand out as different.

But his new neighbor, Ethan, isn’t just going to change his plans. He’s going to change Carter’s life.

Ethan Hart is recovering from a traumatic brain injury, but it doesn’t dampen his enthusiasm or love for life. As soon as he sees Carter, who moves like the music Ethan sees between the clouds and the grass, he’s determined to become his friend, and then his boyfriend. And even if his parents say their romance can’t get physical, Ethan won’t let it stand in the way of falling in love.

Stepping into the spotlight was the last thing Carter ever wanted, but Ethan, along with a group of friends who like him just the way he is—tics and all—starts to change his mind. 

Adapted as a YA edition of the award-winning novel Ethan, Who Loved Carter by Ryan Loveless.

Ethan is out October 20th! Preorder Ethan now
About Ryan Loveless

Ryan Loveless is a farmer’s daughter. She has a BA in English from a private college in Illinois and a master’s degree in library and information science with an archival certificate from a university in New York. Raised in a conservative family, she was shocked and relieved when her coming out was largely uneventful. She has been writing since she could read and has always drifted toward M/M because she enjoys the relationship dynamics. It’s possible that her first story was about GI Joe. She wishes she still had that story.

Find Ryan on Goodreads, Facebook, and on Twitter @RyanLoveless

Saturday, October 8, 2016

The Beasts in Lucky's Worlds! Lou Hoffmann's "Wraith Queen's Veil," Book #2 in the Sun Child Chronicles!

Join me in welcoming Lou Hoffman to my blog with her blog tour stop for Wraith Queen's Veil! Today she gives us an inside look at the Beasts in Lucky's Worlds! And don't forget to enter the giveaway below!

Use coupon code SUNCHILD2 to get this fabulous deal: 
35% discount on Key of Behliseth and Wraith Queen’s Veil when you buy only from Harmony Ink Press!
Also available from 

The Beasts in Lucky’s Worlds: 
A loving look at the horrible, wonderful, treacherous, loyal, extraordinary non-humanoids 
in Lou Hoffmann’s The Sun Child Chronicles

Hello Readers! I’m Lou Hoffmann and today is the official release day for book 2 of The Sun Child Chronicles, Wraith Queen’s Veil. I’m grateful to Cody Kennedy to have me here today, and thank you, too, readers, for stopping by. This is a fun post—at least it’s a fun one for me to write, and I think you’ll enjoy reading it as well. Before I begin the bestiary, take a look at the blurb for WQV and the outstanding cover, designed by artist Catt Ford.

About Wraith Queen's Veil

When Lucky arrives in Ethra, the world of his birth and destiny, he expects a joyful reunion, but the first thing he notices when he reaches the Sisterhold—his home—is something false behind his mother’s smile. In a matter of weeks, the Sisterhold becomes agitated with worries and war plans. People he trusts—like the wizard Thurlock—frequently can’t be found. His mother seems angry, especially with Lucky. Even Han Shieth, the warrior uncle he has come to rely on and love above all others, maintains a sullen silence toward him.

When Lucky’s resentment builds to the breaking point, his bad decisions put him and his friends, L’Aria and Zhevi, in unthinkable danger. Han arrives to help, but he can’t claim invulnerability to the hazards and evils that threaten at every turn. Events launch Lucky, alone, on a quest for he knows not what, but every step brings him closer to his identity and full strength. Self-knowledge, trust, and strength lead to smarter choices, but even his best efforts might not render his world truly safe, now or for the future.

Also important, there’s a giveaway—follow the Rafflecopter link in this post and enter for chances to be one of four winners!

Now about the beasts…

(In the arbitrary order of the letters of the alphabet)
Book: Key of Behliseth
The Stallion ridden by Liliana, Lucky’s mother, in as she leads her elite cavalry, Shanha’s Rangers, into battle. “His gait proud, his hooves fleet. His coat shone like spun gold even in the tower’s foul glow.”

Book: Key of Behliseth
The northern queen Hilgaardre’s legendary “moon-white winged mount,” given in hopeful atonement for a lifetime serving an evil god to her adopted daughter, Isa.

An ancient wolf who rules a dark, cursed forest in Ethra. Tall, heavily muscled, paws larger than dinner plates. His “eyes blazed with an eerie, changing light, never settling on any color.”

Black Dragon
Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
A wingless, dragon, very large in circumference and length, a single central horn located behind it’s skull, and numerous short legs. It breathes neither fire nor ice. Well-armored with “shiny back scales… quite beautiful in the moonlight.”

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
Large, smelly, horrific but natural monsters. Nearly blind, sensing sudden changes in heat instead. “Nasty creatures the size of a pony with teeth like a beaver but pointy.”

Dawn Cats
Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
Pack-hunting carnivores of the Sunlands’ forests, also known as thrall-gazers, death kittens, and venom cats.

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
Small flying creatures, venomous. “Dark and winged and sort of like a very small dinosaur.”

Eastern Flickers
Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
Small silver-winged birds that cheer Lucky during dark times while on his travels in Ethra.

Flame Eagles
An Ethran species of intelligent, civilized bird, allies of the Sunlands. “Massive birds plumed in white and crested black, saffron, and red.”

Book: Key of Behliseth
The Flame Eagles’ “battle-wise” king.

Glacier Wolves
Book: Key of Behliseth
Ethran wolves with shaggy white hair. curled-up tails, the aerodynamic shape of a greyhound, double rows of teeth in long snouts. “Their eyes pearled ghost white except for the pupils, dart-sharp and burning red.”

Book: Key of Behliseth and Wraith Queen’s Veil
A flame eagle killed in the battle of Black Creek Ravine.

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
A black winged stallion. “The last of the great winged beasts of the far north—born long after the world believed the strain had died.”

Lemon Martinez
Book: Key of Behliseth and Wraith Queen’s Veil
A grumpy gray cat Thurlock and Han found under the Martinez Bridge in Valley city. “Lemon Martinez loathed magic in general, but he loved the wizard’s things—slept on his pajamas, for instance.”

Book: Key of Behliseth and Wraith Queen’s Veil
A yellow mongrel dog Lucky raised during his time as a homeless teen. Sloppy tongue, thick fur. “Like a big ball of animated sunshine.”

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
Lucky’s aunt Rosishan’s orange tomcat.

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
An ancient shape- and color-changing dragon, sometimes called the Giver. She dwells “in iridescent pools… in the deepest, most hidden cavern in the heart of Behlis Ethra.”

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
A singular, water-dwelling being who lives in underground pools with Naht’kah, called the Taker, “A furry beast with duck feet, human-like hands, and a long, floppy proboscis.”

Book: Key of Behliseth and Wraith Queen’s Veil
A blue, ice-breathing dragon. Eerily beautiful, large for her species, clawed, armored. “The first ice-drake ever transformed, and the only one ever to rise flawless.”

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
Lucky’s uncle Han Shieth’s exceptional, fleet, stouthearted sorrel mare. 

Book: Key of Behliseth
Thurlock’s famous silver-gray mare. “Even at night, the mare’s silver coat flashed as they passed through shadows. Her hooves, shod with sun-metal, sparked with every stride.”

Book: Wraith Queen’s Veil
“A plodding old-man-horse…who had three speeds: slow, slower, and backward.”
That’s it for the beasts! I hope you enjoyed peeking into the crazy worlds wandered by Lucky (also known as Luccan Elieth Perdhro, Mannatha, Suth Chiell, the Sun Child of the Ethran Sunlands). 

Wraith Queen’s Veil is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and all around the web, but here are the buy publisher’s buy links, where you can use coupon code SUNCHILD2 to get this fabulous deal: 35% discount on Key of Behliseth and Wraith Queen’s Veil when you buy only from Harmony Ink or Dreamspinner Press!

That’s it for the beasts!

The Giveaway:

About Wraith Queen's Veil
When Lucky arrives in Ethra, the world of his birth and destiny, he expects a joyful reunion, but the first thing he notices when he reaches the Sisterhold—his home—is something false behind his mother’s smile. In a matter of weeks, the Sisterhold becomes agitated with worries and war plans. People he trusts—like the wizard Thurlock—frequently can’t be found. His mother seems angry, especially with Lucky. Even Han Shieth, the warrior uncle he has come to rely on and love above all others, maintains a sullen silence toward him.

When Lucky’s resentment builds to the breaking point, his bad decisions put him and his friends, L’Aria and Zhevi, in unthinkable danger. Han arrives to help, but he can’t claim invulnerability to the hazards and evils that threaten at every turn. Events launch Lucky, alone, on a quest for he knows not what, but every step brings him closer to his identity and full strength. Self-knowledge, trust, and strength lead to smarter choices, but even his best efforts might not render his world truly safe, now or for the future.

About Lou Hoffmann
Lou Hoffmann has carried on her love affair with books for decades, yet she hasn’t even made a dent in the list of books she’d love to read—at least partly because the list keeps growing. She reads factual things—books about physics and history and fractal chaos, but when she wants truth, she looks for it in quality fiction. She loves all sorts of wonderful things: music and silence, laughter and tears, youth and age, sunshine and storms, forests and fields, flora and fauna, rivers and seas. Even good movies and popcorn! Those things help her breathe, and everyone she knows helps her write. (Special mention goes to (1) George the Lady Cat and (2) readers.) She writes for readers who find themselves anywhere on the spectrums of age and gender, aiming to create characters that live not only in their stories, but always in your imagination and your heart. 

She blogs at Queerly YA, is on facebook, is @Lou_Hoffmann on Twitter, and loves to hear from readers at louhoffmannbooks (at)gmail(dot)com. She believes in love, believes in you, and believes in the magic of a good book.

Find Lou on her Website, Facebook, Twitter @Lou_Hoffmann, 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Breaking News! The French translation of Thรกrros is underway!

Thรกrros is being translated into French by our beloved Bรฉnรฉdicte Girault!
Anticipated release, January 2017!

“It is the task of the translator to release in his own language that pure language that is under the spell of another, to liberate the language imprisoned in a work in his re-creation of that work.” ― Walter Benjamin, Illuminations: Essays and Reflections

The work that goes into a translation of a work is a true test of the translator's art, will, and nerve. It isn’t only to translate the words literally, but to translate the author’s “voice.” It is to render the original intent of the author's words and, above all, to capture inflections in the telling of the story. It is a true art. Thank you, Bรฉnรฉdicte, for your tireless efforts and your beautiful words.
Thรกrros is available in English 

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Harmony Ink Press Sponsors #SLJTeenLIVE!

Check out the Program!

Featuring cool author panels with 

If you're between the ages of 14-21, write for 

Positive LGBTQ+ Teen and New Adult Fiction

Harmony Ink Press is an imprint publishing Teen and New Adult fiction featuring significant personal growth of unforgettable characters across the LGBTQ+ spectrum. We seek strong, authentic voices telling thought-inspiring stories with positive outcomes that explore all the facets of young adult, teen, and new adult life—between the ages of 14 and 21—across a wide range of subgenres. Our published works reach into a wide range of reader-favorite genres, including fantasy, mystery, paranormal, romance, science fiction, and more.

Harmony Ink Press is a full-service publisher. We provide cover art, full editing, and marketing for every title we contract. Authors do not pay for our services. Once we accept a manuscript, it is put through a 16- to 20-week editing process that will involve more than four editors. We provide specialized content editing for historicals and other genres. All cover art is unique to the book and designed by an artist based on the author’s input.

Our digital products are created in four formats: mobi (Kindle), epub (Nook, iBooks, Kobo), pdf, and html (the format used by almost all adaptive devices for the blind or people with disabilities). Novels of 60,000 words+ are published simultaneously in paperback.

Our distribution includes all online retailers (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Audible, All Romance eBooks, OmniLit, Diesel Books), more than fifty independent bookstores that we supply directly, and distribution to all physical bookstores through Baker & Taylor in North America, Gardners Books in the UK, Ingram in Europe, and Bulldog Books in Australia. Titles are released simultaneously with all of our distribution partners (processing times vary by site).

We employ full-time personnel who market and promote our imprint, new releases and support authors in their promotions for their publication. We have a review coordinator who handles the submission and processing of reviews and publicizes positive reviews through Facebook, Twitter, our blog, and our newsletter. We have a social media coordinator who handles interaction, interviews, and virtual book release days on Facebook, Twitter, our blog, and Goodreads. Our Art Department produces unique and new ads each month for our standing advertisements in Library Journal, School Library Journal, 26 websites, and various other season-based advertising. We also promote in program books at over 50 conventions worldwide each year.

Harmony Ink Press is also committed to supporting the LGBTQ+ community through a variety of charitable promotions and publications.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Check out the Cover Reveal and Excerpt for j. leigh bailey's upcoming novel, Do-Gooder!

Check out the new cover for J. Leigh Bailey's upcoming novel, Do-Gooder, out September 15th from Harmony Ink Press!

Published by Harmony Ink Press
Release date: September 15, 2016
ISBN: 9781634772891

Add Do-Gooder to your Goodreads list!

About Do-Gooder

No good deed goes unpunished, and for seventeen-year-old Isaiah Martin, that’s certainly the case. The gun he was caught with wasn’t even his, for God’s sake. He only had it to keep a friend from doing something stupid. No one wants to hear it, though, and Isaiah is banished—or so it seems to him—to live with his missionary father in politically conflicted Cameroon, Africa.

However, when he arrives, his father is so busy doing his good deeds that he sends Henry, the young, surprisingly hot do-gooder with a mysterious past, to pick up Isaiah and keep him out of trouble. Even while Isaiah is counting down the days until he can go home, he and Henry get caught in the political unrest of the region. Kidnapped by militant forces, the two have to work together to survive until they are rescued—unless they manage to find a way to save each other first.


I admired Henry’s Zen calm. Sometimes he stood, sometimes he sat, but always he was still. He didn’t fidget or pace or rock in place (all the things I did). He didn’t stare at the water jug, but I’d bet big bucks that he knew exactly how much liquid remained. I looked away from the jug. One glance and my parched mouth and throat tingled with thirst.

“MacGyver.” The name popped out.

Henry looked up, asking his question with the motion of his eyebrows.

“You know, that old eighties TV show?”

“Sorry.” Henry shrugged. “I didn’t watch much television, especially shows that aired more than a decade before I was born.”

I waved that aside. “The show’s about this guy—”

“Let me guess. A guy named MacGyver?”

I rolled my eyes. “Ha-ha. Yes, a guy named MacGyver. He always seemed to be in these crazy situations—I have no idea why—and always managed to get out of them by some clever invention he made out of random stuff on hand. Like, you know, a watch, a fart, and a paper bag, and he creates this explosive device that takes out an entire military bunker, giving him barely enough time to save the girl or the hostages and derail the evil plot or whatever.”

“So you think MacGyver will come and save the day?”

“Don’t be an ass. But we should totally MacGyver this situation.”

“How? We have, literally, the clothes on our backs and a jug of water. I’m not sure even MacGyver could rescue himself or anyone else with so little.”

“That’s not the point. He… he was smart. We may not be able to use our wits”—my wits were well on their way to being scrambled eggs—“to rescue ourselves, but maybe we can figure out what’s going on. What’s in the canisters? Who are these guys? What side are they on? Does it matter what side they’re on? You know, information that might come in handy down the line.”

About j. leigh bailey

j. leigh bailey is an office drone by day and the author of Young Adult and New Adult LGBTQ Romance by night. She can usually be found with her nose in a book or pressed up against her computer monitor. A book-a-day reading habit sometimes gets in the way of... well, everything...but some habits aren't worth breaking. She's been reading romance novels since she was ten years old. The last twenty years or so have not changed her voracious appetite for stories of romance, relationships, and achieving that vitally important Happy Ever After. She's a firm believer that everyone, no matter their gender, age, sexual orientation or paranormal affiliation deserves a happy ending. Find out more at www.jleighbailey.net, email her at j.leigh.bailey@gmail.com, and check out her Harmony Ink Author Page!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Welcome Calista Lynne and her debut novel, We Awaken! Calista talks More Happy Endings, Please!

Join me in welcoming Calista Lynne and her debut novel, We Awaken, to my blog! It's an honor to have you here, Calista! 

Calista talks about a very important subject today: how LGBTQIA youth are represented in our media. Sadly, much literature and media features LGBTQIA protagonists in unhappy endings. Calista and I share a heartfelt desire to not only write happy endings for our readers, but to give readers hope for a happy ending of their own. 

Find We Awaken at Harmony Ink Press
Add We Awaken to your Goodreads list!

More Happy Endings, Please 
On girls loving girls in the media

Girls are great. Girls loving one another is, therefore, fantastic as well. You’d think the world would catch on to how incorporating ladies in same sex relationships into media would be a good thing, but so far we’ve been disappointed. When writing my novel I made sure to give my LGBTQ characters a happy ending, but those are shockingly rare to find these days. So let’s discuss lesbians in literature and how they deserve so much better than they are given. 

Sappho of Lesbos was born 600 years before Jesus was supposed to have been walking around and she knew how to get girls going. Although most of this poet’s work is lost, her name and home are where we get the words sapphic and lesbian from. She must be feeling truly honored in the afterlife. Her poetry wasn’t shy about expressing love of the female form and all my lady loving ladies should be grateful to her for leading the way, even if the path from there hasn’t been the smoothest. Apart from her, lesbianism has been such a taboo subject that blatant expression of it in writing is basically nonexistent in literature until the seventies. 

Old school “lesbian” novels were aimed at young adults and portray homosexuality as being just a phase or something that only ends tragically. You could say fear tactics were used to try and spook young gays into straightness.


Eventually the state of LGBTQ literature improved, but tropes without happy endings for lesbians lives on, especially on television. Gay characters die so frequently on shows that it’s become a cliche unto itself. This is referred to as "Bury Your Gays." The number of lesbians ladies who have died on television is far into the triple digits and, plainly stated, I can’t think of any who are allowed a happily ever after. Writers can’t keep treating members of the LGBTQ community like they’re incidental characters and disposable people. People do not aspire to be what they can not see. So how is a young lesbian, who may already feel ostracized, supposed to hope for a happy ending for herself when so few examples exist... anywhere?

I’d say literature is a bit kinder to gay characters in this regard but there is still a distinct lack of representation. Tipping the Velvet features a slew of lesbians characters and is a popular novel, from which several adaptations have been produced. Comics and graphic novels are also a shockingly great place to find LGBTQ characters, although many of these also have a dismal ending. Apart from Fun Home which tells a fantastic story of Alison Bechdel’s life, off the top of my head, I only know that V for Vendetta and Sandman both have lesbian characters. 

An onslaught of gay male characters have filled young adult literature of late, which is all well and good. Looking at my bookshelves now, I see Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, Carry On, Hero, Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, and Will Grayson, Will Grayson. All of these novels have at least one gay protagonist and a moderately cheery ending. My hope is that these novels will pave the way for other parts of the LGBTQ community to receive their share of representation. Shelves full of young girls who aren’t afraid to love other girls and ride off into the sunset together would be a personal dream come true. Maybe then, lesbians of the world will be able to dream of one day having it all.

My upcoming novel features two female, asexual protagonists in a same sex relationship and I did made it as cheery and delightful as I would have wanted such a novel to be when I was growing up. Writing your own happy ending is fully within your power and I commend those who do it!

Thank you for joining me today and I'd love to hear your thoughts on creating your own happy endings!

Calista Lynne

Thank you for joining me today, Calista! Leave a question or comment below! Calista will answer your questions and may help you create a happy ending of your own!

About We Awaken

Victoria Dinham doesn’t have much left to look forward to. Since her father died in a car accident, she lives only to fulfill her dream of being accepted into the Manhattan Dance Conservatory. But soon she finds another reason to look forward to dreams when she encounters an otherworldly girl named Ashlinn, who bears a message from Victoria’s comatose brother. Ashlinn is tasked with conjuring pleasant dreams for humans, and through the course of their nightly meetings in Victoria’s mind, the two become close. Ashlinn also helps Victoria understand asexuality and realize that she, too, is asexual.

But then Victoria needs Ashlinn’s aid outside the realm of dreams, and Ashlinn assumes human form to help Victoria make it to her dance audition. They take the opportunity to explore New York City, their feelings for each other, and the nature of their shared asexuality. But like any dream, it’s too good to last. Ashlinn must shrug off her human guise and resume her duties creating pleasant nighttime visions—or all of humanity will pay the price.

Find We Awaken at Harmony Ink PressAmazon, and Barnes & Noble!
Add We Awaken to your Goodreads list!

About Calista Lynne

Calista Lynne grew up on the American East Coast and currently studies in London. She writes because it always seemed to make more sense than mathematics, yet has much trouble adjusting to the lack of Oxford commas represented in literature across the pond (in the US). Look for her near the caffeinated beverages.

Find Calista on her blog, on Twitter @CalistaWrites, on Tumblr, and on Goodreads!