Tag Archives: Virtual Living Room

News Roundup: BSB 2014 Bash, KE Payne at the VLR, Ali Smith in London, Kiki tops the USA chart, and much more…

10 Oct

I can’t believe it’s been a week since I last did this, but here we are chomping at the bit for another gallop around the news. I have no idea where this horse imagery is coming from. I don’t own one. I don’t even like them, with their huge teeth and snorty nostrils. Hmm, shall we just get on with it?

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group shotSupremely organised Bold Strokes editor Vic Oldham is already gearing up for the 5th Annual Bold Strokes Book Festival UK and she wants to let everyone know exactly why they should be marking the date on their 2014 calendars (what do you mean, you haven’t got one yet?! It’s October!) The festival will be taking place in Nottingham over the weekend of June 6th-8th, is entirely free to attend, and loads of fun. If you need any more incentive, head to Vic’s blog post for 20 great reasons, and hit this link to read up on last year’s bash. For the record, I will not be doing number 4, but wholeheartedly agree with number 16.

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BSB_Because_of_HerAs mentioned on the last news, the Virtual Living Room UK Author Spotlight Weekend is this weekend, and BSB YA author Ke Payne was somehow omitted from all the early listings. So I would like to set the record straight: KE PAYNE will also be there. Along with a whole host of other fabulous peeps. Fun, games, and general chaos kick off this Friday at 4 pm, UK time.

Sticking with KE for a moment: back at the end of August we shared the synopsis for her upcoming novel Because of Her (due for release in March 2014). At the time it didn’t have a cover. Now it does, and I think you’ll all agree it’s really quite swanky.

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51Zch618BLL._SY445_Maureen Duffy‘s new novel In Times Like These has been released this week. It’s difficult to really get a handle on this novel because the blurb on Amazon is a dog’s breakfast of mangled-together text, and I have absolutely no idea as to its lesbian content. More information and a slightly less tangled blurb can be found on the front page of Maureen’s website. As the saying goes, you pays yer money and you takes yer chances…

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stirfry-978144724812501We’re a little late catching this one (to be fair to us, it’s only just been highlighted on the author’s page!) but July 2013 saw the release of four of Emma Donoghue‘s early titles, Hood, Stir Fry, Landing and Kissing The Witchreleased onto Kindle, with shiny new covers to boot. Hood and Stir Fry are two of my favourites of hers, so it’s lovely to see them in with a chance of finding a whole new e-reader audience.

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330x235valmcdermidFans of Val McDermid should be rubbing their hands with glee throughout October because Val is going to be, quite frankly, bloody everywhere.  So ubiquitous, in fact, that there are far too many TV appearances and radio shows for us to list. Best thing you can do to plan your schedule is head to the News page on Val’s blog, where there’s a handy timetable.

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alismithA real treat now for Londoners (or anyone who fancies heading down to the Big Smoke) to catch an appearance by Ali Smith, who will be reading extracts from her book Artful at Gay’s the Word bookshop on Sunday 20th October. From the Facebook page:

Gay’s the Word bookshop is delighted-beyond-words to be welcoming author Ali Smith for a relaxed Sunday afternoon reading from her extraordinary and special book ‘Artful’

Event Entry £5 per person – Booking required – please call 0207 278 7654 to secure your place. Limited places available.

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Kiki-ArcherKiki Archer‘s new book One Foot Onto the Ice has been going down a storm in the US. It hit the number one spot in the Amazon lesfic charts and then proceeded to start climbing up into the top 100 contemporary novels. It was also reviewed on the So So Gay website. Here’s what they had to say:

When it comes to lesbian oriented romance, it is clear that Kiki Archer remains the top author to watch as her latest book One Foot Onto the Ice manages to immediately catch our notice. In a story that is filled to the brim with romance, intrigue and comedy we are not surprised to see this book hitting the highest summits in the charts so quickly after release.

You can read the rest of the review here.

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And that’s about yer lot. Hope to see a few of you kicking about this weekend on the VLR 🙂

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News Roundup: UK Authors at the VLR, Rainbow Awards Finalists, Sarah Waters’ New Novel, Giveaways Galore & Loads More

3 Oct

Even if the weather stays mild, there are still indisputable signs that summer’s over and done with. The nights start to draw in, the telly gets a hell of a lot better, The Great British Bake Off has everyone craving CAKE (and Sue Perkins!), politicians return from their holidays and immediately resume their roles of acting like dicks, and Christmas puds hit the shelves in Asda.

In terms of UK LesFic, the signs look a little like this: new books come flying out, everyone’s suddenly doing stuff, planning stuff or writing stuff, Tig and I are chasing around news snippets like mad things, the awards season kicks off, and the news subsequently expands its waistline like someone sitting down to a lunch of pie, chips and beans.

Better get started then, eh?

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717930First this week, an early heads-up about a special Spotlight Weekend for UK LesFic authors at the Virtual Living Room. Running from 11th-14th October, the weekend will feature a whole host of familiar faces answering questions and chatting to readers and other authors. And who might these familiar faces be?

Kiki Archer (But She is My Student, Instigations, Binding Devotion and One Foot on the Ice)

I Beacham (Sanctuary and The Rarest Rose)

Andrea Bramhall (Ladyfish and Clean Slate)

Crin Claxton (Scarlet Thirst and The Supernatural Detective)

Rachel Dax (After the Night, The Legend of Pope Joan Part I and Part II)

Suzanne Egerton (Out Late with Friends and Regrets)

Cari Hunter (Snowbound and Desolation Point)

VG Lee (The Woman in Beige, The Comedienne, Always You Edina and Diary of a Provincial Lesbian)

Niamh Murphy (Mask of the Highway Woman, Delicious and A Fairy Tale Retold)

R.J. Samuel (Heart Stopper, Falling Colours, Casting Shadows and In Your Words)

Jade Winters (143, Talk Me Down from the Edge and A Walk into Darkness)

My lovely blog buddy Clare Ashton will be moderating, along with Beni Gee and Terry Baker. If you want to come along and join in the fun, click the link at the top, which will take you to the group’s main page.

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RJSamuelAuthorPicFor those stubborn souls who may need more incentive to sign up to the VLR, R.J. Samuel is currently running an exclusive VLR giveaway for the first two novels in her Vision Painter series, Falling Colours and Casting Shadows. Members can choose one of the books, and the offer is open until October 7th.

R.J. also had this to say about her upcoming trip to Women’s Week in the USA:

“I will be doing two readings in Provincetown on the GCLS panels – Thursday panel 11:00 am to 11:35 am and Friday 11:35 am to 12:10 pm. I’ll be giving away 10 ‘Limited Edition’ J printed copies of my short story In Your Words (including excerpts of Heart Stopper and Falling Colours) to the first 5 women at each reading to come up to me after the readings and say hi. (And yes, this is a blatant ploy to avoid being the only author standing alone twiddling my thumbs after the panel readings J ).”

Fans who may have been looking forward to new work from R.J. should check out her latest blog post, which gives a bit of an insight into her writing and why she’s not quite as up to speed with it as she might have liked. Here’s hoping her muse is feeling slightly less bewildered but still finding time for plenty of cupcakes…

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FinalistSMEarlier this week, the Rainbow Awards announced their Honourable Mentions (books scored 36+/40 by at least one judge), swiftly followed by the full list of finalists for each individual category.

Honourable mentions went to Kiki Archer for Binding Devotion (Lesbian Contemporary General Fiction), Andrea Bramhall for Ladyfish (Lesbian Contemporary Romance) and Jade Winters for A Walk Into Darkness (Lesbian Mystery Thriller).  Joining them in the finals are: I. Beacham with The Rarest Rose (Lesbian Paranormal Romance) and me (Cari Hunter!) with Desolation Point (Lesbian Mystery Thriller).

A full list of finalists can be found at the link, and the winners will be announced on December 8th. Congrats and best of British to all 🙂

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A4Another busy little soul at the moment is Kiki Archer, who has been celebrating the release of her new novel One Foot Onto The Ice by chatting to Lucy Jo Amos over here at Lucy’s blog, and taking part in a video interview with When Sally Met Sally, where she faced the lose-lose scenario of choosing between twerking or eating a freeze-dried worm.

Worm. Every time. I do not twerk.

You can catch the interview at the link. Meanwhile, in a new review, Terry Baker had this to say about One Foot Onto The Ice:

One of the really great things about this book is the laugh out loud humor throughout. I’m only too pleased I read this book indoors. It’s hilarious in places. I would defy anyone to read the scene with Susan and Jenna in the bathroom without laughing. This is a brilliantly written scene as it shows Jenna in a really different light. So, there is a whole range of emotions across the board to be experienced between the pages.

The full review can be found here.

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HanselGretalSticking with reviews for the moment with another of Terry’s, this time for Jade WintersA Walk Into Darkness:

This well written mystery, murder, intrigue, romance had me totally hooked from the very first page through to the last page. To say it is a page turner is an understatement. I couldn’t get through the book fast enough to find out how it ended. I knew Jade Winters was a talented writer from reading some of her short stories. But, she has really excelled herself in penning this full length book that kept me on the edge of my seat throughout.

And over at Rainbow Book Reviews, they’ve been singing the praises of Niamh Murphy‘s fairytale reworking Gretel:

This is a truly imaginative, inventive, and ingenious re-telling of such a beloved classic. I felt completely immersed as if I shared Gretel’s mind and body. I became enthralled by Maeve and yes, possibly bewitched. I applaud the brilliance of this short story and completely recommend it!

As always, the full reviews are available at the links.

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598px-Sarah_WatersThe drip feed of details about Sarah Waters‘ new novel continues over at her website. We now have a title, an era and an indication of what the book will be about. The Paying Guests (due for release in autumn 2014) will be set in the 1920s, and its blurb currently reads like this:

It is 1922, and London is tense. Ex-servicemen are disillusioned, the out-of-work and the hungry are demanding change. And in South London, in a genteel Camberwell villa, a large silent house now bereft of brothers, husband and even servants, life is about to be transformed, as impoverished widow Mrs Wray and her spinster daughter, Frances, are obliged to take in lodgers.

For with the arrival of Lilian and Leonard Barber, a modern young couple of the ‘clerk class’, the routines of the house will be shaken up in unexpected ways. And as passions mount and frustration gathers, no one can foresee just how far, and how devastatingly, the disturbances will reach…

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Speaking of upcoming novels, LT Smith has a new Facebook page, where she has just announced the forthcoming publication of her novel/novella (it’s 40,000 words in length) Puppy Love. The book looks set to join See Right Through Me in a November 2013 release. A cover is still pending but the blurb can be found on the New & Upcoming Releases page. All proceeds from the book will go to charities to help puppies in need. Aww.

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GB-Cover1It’s almost time for dinner (it was tea-time when I bloody started!) so a quick mention of two current giveaways:

V.T. Davy is running a Mystery Voice Twitter competition to win copies of A Very Civil Wedding. To enter you need to click the link, identify the voice and tweet your answer before October 6th. To be notified of the results, follow @LiberationBooks (she says, like she knows what the hell she’s talking about – I tweet about as much as I twerk!)

Finally, for US readers only, Stella Duffy has a GoodReads giveaway for copies of her novel Parallel Lies. The competition runs until 15th October. Sorry UK peeps, I don’t make the rules.

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BSB_Scarlet_ThirstOkay, when I said that was the last thing I lied, because I stupidly checked Facebook JUST IN CASE I’d missed anything and there was Crin Claxton telling folks that her revised version of lesbian vampire romp Scarlet Thirst is now going cheap on amazon (UK and US) for a limited time. And when I say cheap, I mean £3.32, which is a bloody – no pun intended – bargain, and perfectly timed for Halloween.

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Right, I’ve put my blinkers and the kettle on. If anyone else does anything exciting, it’ll have to wait till next week…

News on the run…Book Flash with Ellen Dean in the VLR tonight…

15 Feb

A bit last minute this, but the Virtual Living Room has given us a heads up that Ellen Dean (author of Beautiful Strangers) will be taking part in a Book Flash tonight.

717930The VLR – for those not in the know! – is a Yahoo group devoted to the discussion of lesbian literature. It has an enthusiastic following of readers and authors, and is a very friendly place to hang out.

The Book Flash – taking place this evening from 8 p.m. GMT. (3 p.m. EST) – places an author in the hot seat to answer pre-set questions about her book, and any other questions that are then posed by members. Head over to the VLR’s main page to find more information about the group, including details on how to join.

News Roundup

1 Feb

419gtsIJQGL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-52,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_ Casting Shadows Reviewed

Terry Baker has reviewed RJ Samuel‘s Casting Shadows: “This is RJ Samuel’s third book. With each book, I grow to love her writing more. Her stories are well written page turners. This series is spellbinding and magical and although the series has an element of fantasy, I found myself almost believing the impossible.”

Read the rest of the review here.

Worthing

 VG Lee event in Worthing

An evening with VG Lee and Paul Burston talking about and reading from the anthology Men and Women. This event is part of LGBT History Month.

It is essential to book to attend this event:

Venue: Worthing Library
Date: Thursday 7 February
Time: 7.00pm
Phone: 01903 704809
Tickets: £3.00

VLRVLR Spotlight on indies including Clare Ashton

The Yahoo group The Virtual Living Room is a lesfic discussion group. As part of their spotlight series, a group of indie authors, including Clare Ashton, will join the group for any questions Feb 22nd-25th. To join go to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Virtuallivingroom/