Posted in Broken Heart, Dani Hoots, guest blogger, New Release!, Professional Secret

Guest Blogger: Dani Hoots!

Please give a warm welcome to my guest this week: Dani Hoots

Title: Professional Secret
Series: My Broken Heart
Author: Dani Hoots

Blurb:
It was good news to Heinrich when he found out he was getting promoted to assistant manager at his office, but when he found out he would be going on a business trip with his boss Christoph, he knew he had to try his best to not let his true feelings towards his boss show. But after a couple of drinks on the business trip, can he keep those feelings to himself? And what if the impossible happened and Christoph had those same feelings as well?

*All the My Broken Heart short stories are independent and don’t need to be read in order.
Excerpt:
“Heinrich, can you come to my office for a second?” Christoph, our boss called from down the hallway. I glanced at Charles and Jonathan. They gave me their ‘uh-oh, what did you do to get called into the boss’ office’ look. Then, as usual, I gave them my ‘I don’t know, should I be worried’ look. I rarely got called into Christoph’s office, and when I did, usually I wasn’t in trouble or any- thing.
Usually.
I finished up my last inputs in the computer and got up from my desk, and took a deep breath. I didn’t want to get yelled at, even though I didn’t think I messed anything up this week. Al- though he wasn’t as bad as the boss upstairs, who laid into Christoph more times than I could count, he still was pretty intimidating. Charles and Jonathan mouthed ‘good luck’ and I headed into Christoph’s office.
The office itself was neat and tidy. Nothing was ever out of place, I swore he was OCD or something. It was a contradiction to everyone else’s office space, which were covered in papers, staples, and clips (even though when you needed one you could never find it and have to borrow someone else’s). While everyone found his tendencies quite annoying, I found them a bit…
Cute.
I would never say that out loud, though. Who knows what people in the office would think if they knew…
Christoph swiveled around to face me, and I always have to keep myself from blushing when he looks directly at me with his emerald eyes. His brown hair was rather on the messy side today, as if he might have pulled an all-nighter at the office. It was always hard to tell since his of- fice clothes all looked the same; white shirt, black tie, black suit, black shoes. Every day. He really did work himself into the ground sometimes, and I always want to tell him to relax, but it’s not my place.
5
“Heinrich, please sit,” he gestured towards the chair.
My heart started to race. Usually he didn’t make someone sit down unless he was going to chew them out. This week had been going so well, too.
“There’s a meeting next week in Brussels, with all the company managers. Usually the as- sistant managers come as well, and as you know, Frank is retiring in two weeks, so his job is going to be open, and there is no point in bringing him along when he is going to be leaving,” Christoph explained.
I just looked at him a bit confused. “Okay…”
“What I’m saying is, you are up for promotion, so what do you say to an assistant manager position? And coming to the meeting in Brussels?”
“You are giving the promotion to me?”
“Yes, I think you are the most qualified for the job. Your work has improved a lot over the past few months and I think this promotion could help you improve even more. What do you say?”
I didn’t even need to think about it. “Yes, of course.”
“Good. We leave Monday morning for Brussels and should be back early Wednesday. We will be sharing a room, is that okay?”
“Oh, uh, yeah, that’s fine.” Because normally sharing a room is fine. It’s not like I could say ‘no, I would feel uncomfortable since I have had feelings towards you since we first met’. I had to act like everything was fine, it was only for two nights anyway, and it’s not like he would recipro- cate the feelings anyway. It would stay professional, as it always did.
“Well then, I will see you at the train station. Our train leaves at a quarter after seven. I ex- pect you there no later than seven. Should be platform four.”
“I will be there bright and early, you can count on that.”
“Good.” With that, he went back to work, which I took as my cue to leave his office. As I closed his door behind me, Charles and Jonathan gestured to come to their cubicle.
6
“So,” Jonathan looked concerned. “What’s the verdict?”
I simply grinned. “You are looking at the new assistant manager of the company.”

***
We celebrated with drinks that night at the local pub, Jonathan, Charles, and I. We ordered

steins, of course, because that’s what you did when you celebrated a raise, or anything I suppose, according to Jonathan and Charles. I was worried that they would be a little mad at me, since they had been with the company a little longer than I. They seemed okay with it, though, and were gen- uinely happy for me.
I ordered a Haufbrau dunkel, and Charles and Jonathan ordered Paulaners. They usually gave me crap about not supporting our football team by drinking Paulaner. Tonight they didn’t say anything though. Tonight they just wanted to celebrate something.
Our drinks came out and we yelled ‘prost’, and clinked our heavy glasses together and took a drink. Charles, of course, downed the most.
“Well then,” Jonathan set his drink down. “Assistant manager. How did you manage that?” I shrugged. “I really don’t know. Guess Christoph just liked my work.”
“Sure, like we believe that. What, did you hook him up with some girl or something?”

Charles laughed. Jonathan and him clanked drinks again and chugged some more down. I could feel my cheeks redden even more as I took a drink, ignoring the comment. These two were my best of friends, but I couldn’t tell them the truth, that I was gay. I feared how they would view me, that they would stop talking to me. I didn’t want that happen, so I kept my mouth shut when it came to any conversation about a girl. Hopefully I just came off shy or something to them. They were usually drinking, so their attention span was short and I never had to worry. But still.
Jonathan slapped his hand on my back. “We joke, but seriously we are very happy for you.”
I knew that they were, the two of them were my best friends and had been for the past few years. I hoped that we would all be able to work together for years to come, and drink after promo-
7
tions just like this. I would be getting a new office, I knew, which then I wouldn’t be seeing the two of them as much. But we would meet up at lunch, I was sure, and after work for a beer or two.
Taking another drink, I began to wonder what the trip was going to be like with Christoph. I knew it would be fine, I was more worried about the responsibility than anything else. Much was expected of me in the next week and I just hoped I would succeed in the tasks that would be laid out for me.
***
I woke up on Saturday with a little bit of a headache. I shouldn’t have let Charles and

Jonathan talk me into having schnapps.
Yet, every time we celebrated, I found myself waking up with regret.
It wasn’t anything a little coffee couldn’t handle. I got up and started up the pot to brew.

Meanwhile, I picked up the book I had been reading, and leaned back on the couch for a bit. I swore I had the slowest pot in the history of pots. It always took forever for the coffee maker to finish fill- ing. I needed to get a new one but I always seemed to forget when I was at the store, or make some excuse to put it off another day. I could go get one today, but then again I should work on research- ing about the company in case any one asked questions, and make sure any loose ends are tied be- fore I start my new position.
See? Excuses.
The coffee finally finished and I added a bit of cream and sugar. Taking a sip, I decided that no matter what, it would never taste as good as it would if I bought it at a cafe. Why that was, prob- ably because they add so much caramel and sweetener and I wouldn’t admit how much they really added. So many calories, now I realized.
The headache started to go away thanks to the caffeine and I decided that it would be a good idea to start researching more into the company that I would be representing. Sorry coffee pot, you shall be pushed back to another day yet again.
8
There wasn’t much to look up, to be honest, as I had researched much about the company when I first started working there. I did need to finish my work in my old position as soon as I could so that I wouldn’t worry about dumping a project half done on some poor worker who has no idea where it was going. I would be leaving Monday and would be starting the new job soon, as Frank was retiring and finishing up any projects he was already working on. I couldn’t wait to start, I truly couldn’t. This is what I had been working on for years, to get to this position. I wasn’t a slacker, I did everything I could do to be promoted. And now it all had paid off.
And I would be working closely with Christoph. That part of it I liked and didn’t like at the same time. I admitted to myself that I had feelings for him, feelings that I would never share with anyone. Although, discrimination against LGBT in the workplace is illegal in Germany, it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be looked at the same way, judged and the like. I just wanted to fit in and go on with my life as normal.
The only problem was, I couldn’t stop thinking about Christoph. I wanted to say something, I truly did, but I knew that he didn’t feel the same about me. There was no way. I tried to forget about him, go out and meet other guys, but none of them were Christoph. None of them made me blush or my heart race like he did. So after a while, I gave up on looking for someone else. It just wasn’t going to happen, not right now at least.
So working close with him was going to be a challenge, not that I could stay professional, that wasn’t a problem for me, but I knew the feeling I would get in my stomach and in my heart every time I saw him, which now would be a lot more often than not.
And I would be going on a business trip with him in just a couple of days. Great…
But I would get past it. I never let my feelings get in the way of my work. It was unprofes- sional and I wouldn’t allow myself to ever say anything.
Unless he said something first, of course. I wasn’t getting my hopes up, though. 
Links:
Kindle:
Author website: https://danihoots.com/
Posted in gay fiction, guest blogger, Phillip, transgender

Guest Blogger, Sean McKissack

Hello again! This week I host author Sean McKissack and his book To be a Different Someone

Blurb:
James Kane could be summed up in one word: loser. He silently lived as a ghost amongst his parents and he had zero friends at school…unless you count his cousin who had to defend him against the abusive Matt Tracker. When his parents divorce, James moves to Montana and stays with his grandmother, where he makes an extreme adjustment to his life-becoming a different someone named Jennifer. The transition comes with frightening issues Jennifer never thought of. After two years of recovery, she returns to her old high school to start over but she meets up with her past tormentor and gets caught in a web of secrets as she finds herself falling in love. Her conscience gets the best of her as she tries to be truthful to Matt about who she once was, but will he accept her as his girlfriend when she tells him about their past?

Buy Link:


Posted in guest blogger, Secret Seth

Guest Blogger: Ki Brightly

Today I welcome a guest blogger! Please give a warm welcome to Ki Brightly!



Hello! This is Ki Brightly here to discuss my newest release Secret Seth. I was generously invited to be here today, and would like to say thank you to my hostess. So thanks!
Secret Seth was an interesting book for me to write because I had this idea of writing a demisexual character. I’ve explored bits and pieces of demisexuality once before with Joseph in The Paranaturalist, but I never quite got what I was looking for out of that book. I wanted to see what a character would be like who was an extreme demisexual, someone who truly doesn’t feel sexual attraction unless he is very close to someone.
So, thanks to my fascination, this quirk became an integral part of Seth’s personality, in some ways. He is very careful and thorough in all of his life, part of his job in construction is to keep everyone on his site safe. This feeling of being responsible for everyone around him is something he never quite shakes. It takes Seth so long, in fact, to realize what he is feeling towards people—more than friendship or wanting to take care of them—that frequently they have given up on him and already moved on by the time he gets around to letting them know about his feelings. But, Seth’s trip down relationship lane was a while ago for him. He’s been so busy with work he hasn’t had time to figure himself out, and more importantly determine why, precisely, he never seems to like someone until it seems like they’re out of reach.
To research this aspect of Seth’s personality, I talked to several different people who identify to varying degrees as demisexul, or other somewhat similar identifications on the sexuality spectrum. One recurring theme with the people I talked to was that there always seemed to be a great amount of confusion inside themselves about someone they might actually like in a romantic sense, and frequently just as much confusion is caused by their missing cues from other people that other people are interested, because they simply aren’t looking for them the same way someone else might be.
I attempted to make Seth as true to life as I could, in the hopes that someone out there might see something of themselves in him and identify with it. Because after all the road to love is hard, and everyone should get a satisfying happily ever after, no matter where they fall on the sexuality spectrum.
Tyler, on the other hand, Seth’s counterpart, has more along the lines of what we think of, however erroneously, as the average sexual tendencies of a man. He’s sexual, knows it, and is very interested in flirting with men, especially attractive men like Seth. You can see where some problems may arise. Part of this book is a comedy of errors, but I think another, very real part of Tyler and Seth’s relationship is the gentle, organic growth of a friendship before a romantic relationship begins. In a lot of ways that isn’t something we get to see much of in contemporary romance. So many romance novels are two people tripping into bed with each other (and I’ve written them and liked plenty of them, so please don’t think I am in any way upset about that), but Tyler and Seth were a nice change of pace to write.
This is a slow burn love story.

I hope everyone enjoys Tyler and Seth. Happy reading!

Blurb:
Tyler Faulkner lived for his work, constructing Hollywood sets. His designs were perfect, and he expected equal perfection from his crew and himself. But, talented as he was, he felt trapped. A creative clash with a producer left him out of more than just a job, and Tyler decided that maybe a new beginning was exactly what he needed.
Seth Goodwin was reliable. So rock-steady that his father made him a partner in the family construction business over his older brothers. Seth’s job was simple—he took a highly skilled crew out on the road to build ridiculously expensive projects for rich clients. Their success prompted Seth and his dad to hire a new designer.
Seth wasn’t so steady around Tyler. Tyler didn’t simply draw art; he forced it into reality, elbowing his way into Seth’s work crew and life, whether he wanted him there or not. But Seth had a secret he’s been keeping for a long while, and Tyler, flamboyant and verbose, wasn’t someone who fit in a closet, unless he was looking for the perfect shoes to go with his outfit. Would Seth and Tyler be able to make it work? Or would everyone’s secrets catch up with them?

Excerpt:

His lips were glossy. Like glass over cherries, maybe? I had trouble swallowing and couldn’t look away, but he was talking, so that was probably all right. It would be so easy to bend down and…what? I cleared my throat. My mouth watered. Are you wearing… lipstick? Lip… stuff…? I wanted to ask so bad, but I could see that he was.  My heart hurt at the thought of him being far away, but Tyler didn’t actually look happy about the prospect either. 
“This is my job. It’s all I have, so I’ll do what I need to do to keep it, but I like doing it with you.” 
“That’s not true.” 
A confused little crease appeared between his eyebrows. “What’s not?” 
“The job’s not all you have.” 
His lips were glossy. Like glass over cherries, maybe? I had trouble swallowing and couldn’t look away, but he was talking, so that was probably all right. It would be so easy to bend down and…what? I cleared my throat. My mouth watered. Are you wearing… lipstick? Lip… stuff…? I wanted to ask so bad, but I could see that he was. Tyler’s POV He used his thumbs to wipe at my cheeks. Stupid tears. Still, it was kind. I batted his hands away and leaned closer. He let me burrow against his body, and then wrapped his arms around me tight. It was such a relief.

Buy Link
Secret Seth is available for purchase in e-book and paperback, and is also in Kindle Unlimited.
Amazon


Bio
Ki Brightly

Ki grew up in small town nowhere pretending that meteor showers were aliens invading, turning wildflowers into magic potions, and reading more than was probably healthy. Ki had one amazing best friend, one endlessly out of grasp “true love”, and a personal vendetta against normalcy.

Now, as an adult, living in Erie, Pennsylvania, Ki enjoys the sandy beaches, frigid winters, and a wonderful fancy water addiction. Seriously, fancy waters…who knew there were so many different kinds? It’s just water…and yet…

Ki shares this life with a Muse, a Sugar Plum, and two wonderful children. 


You can connect with Ki in many different ways:

Social Media
Facebook
Blog
Tumblr
Twitter
E-mail
kibrightly@gmail.com



Posted in dakota trace, guest blogger

Welcome my guest blogger today: Dakota Trace!


You’re Sticking What…Where?
While most of you may know me as an author of erotic romance in a variety of genres, some may not be aware that I’m also an avid reader. (Not a shocker huh?)  I love to read and review in my spare time and one of my favorite genres to do this for is m/m and BDSM.  So recently I downloaded a couple of books by J.A Rock and Lisa Henry, from their The BOY series. This series appealed to me because of its darker, even edgier feel to it.  As I was reading, imagine my surprise when I ran across Derek using urethral sounds on Lane, his submissive. 
Don’t know what that is?  According to Wikipedia:
Urethral sounding is the medical use of probes called sounds to increase the inner diameter of the urethra and to locate obstructions in it. Sounds are also used to stretch the urethra in order to receive genital piercing.
Okay…we’re talking a medical instrument here? This shouldn’t be a total surprise. The naughty nurse and patient fantasy is probably one of the biggest role play fantasies around.  So in essence what Derek was using a slender stainless steel rod inside of Lane’s dick to stimulate and pleasure his sub. 
Of course being the curious kitty that I am, I wanted to actually see what they looked like. The book had been pretty good about describing the usage and precautions of using them, (sanitize with rubbing alcohol, use plenty of good lube and of course take it slow…lol)   but I actually wanted to see what one looked like.  *grins* And Google is such a wonderful thing!  After a few hits and misses my screen was flooded with all kinds of images from the bizarre – that looks weird to ouch – you’re planning on putting that where?  
There is a wide variety of sounds that range from straight to curved ones. There are even specialty ones that are ribbed, beaded or have a bulbous head on them.  It amazes me what someone might insert in such a sensitive area.

Straight Sounds (Hegar Sounds): don’t let the name fool you.  These sounds are not completely straight. They normally are about 8 inches in length and go from 1/16th to 5/8thinches.  I will admit these look a bit more intimidating to me than the curved ones. Especially the 5/8thone.  This particular set comes with 8 sounds…each one having a different size at each end.



Curved Sounds: are usually up to twelve inches in length and are curved on either end.  These are best used with beginners and from various articles I’ve read, are not the most comfortable if the penis is erect.  They usually come in sets and range from 1/8th of inch to 9/16thof inch.

Bulbous Sounds: this particular set of sounds looks like something right out of a torture film.  With a large bulbous head on each sound, this kind of sound appeals to those who have fetishes for older medical versions of this instrument.  (these were originally used to measure the size of a woman’s cervix.)
So there you have it. You can claim you learned something new today. And while I may be bit on the kinky side, well maybe more than little… *winks* if I happened upon two guys using these on each other…well I’d stop and watch. 
*information and pictures of individual sounds came from: http://www.fiftyshadesofdesire.com/
Author Bio:
Dakota is a simple Midwest girl, who found her passion in storytelling at a young age. She wrote her first novel her freshman year on an old electric IBM typewriter. Now writing in several different genres from erotic romance and BDSM to m/m and paranormal, she is a published author with multiple books under her belt. When she isn’t writing, she’s a devoted band mom and a loving wife.  More information about Dakota and her work can be found on www.dakotatrace.net.
Posted in erin o' quinn, guest blogger, the gaslight mysteries

Please welcome visiting author Erin O’ Quinn!



VINTAGE CONDOMS
Erin OQuinn

Historians of such esoteric subjects agree that condoms were first used for prevention of pregnancy, and by wealthy men only. That makes sense, since women were naturally held to the task of avoiding impregnation, and only wealthy men might wish to keep their seed from being spread outside the marriage bed.
Early condoms, perhaps worn first in ancient China, were apparently small devices that covered the glans only, made from oiled silk paper or lamb intestines. Later, in Japan, they were made of tortoise shell or animal horn. Ouch . . . not for the wearer, but for the receiver!
When a particularly deadly strain of syphilis broke out in Europe in the late 15th century, condoms began to be developed to stop the spread of this disease. One treatise describes linen sheaths soaked in chemicals and allowed to dry. These devices, which covered the glans only, were tied on with a ribbon, giving a whole new meaning to the words babys bonnet.

 

After 1500, penis protection became much more widespread throughout Europe. They were called condoms gradually, starting in the mid-1600s; and they might be made of animal intestines and bladders, or of linen. Heres an interesting note from Wikipedia: 
In the late 15th century, Dutch traders introduced condoms made from fine leather to Japan. Unlike the horn condoms used previously, these leather condoms covered the entire penis.
The notorious philanderer Cassanova was proud of his assurance caps, and was reported to have given demonstrations by blowing into them, proudly showing their lack of holes (see photo).

In spite of oppositionmainly from the clergycondoms, once developed, multiplied quickly. According to Wiki, they were sold at pubs, barbershops, chemist shops, open-air markets, and at the theater throughout Europe and Russia. Once they spread to America, land of invention and individuality, condoms became more and more sophisticated.

 

Skipping ahead a bit, I want to discuss the use of condoms in my Gaslight Mysteries novels. In the first novel HEART TO HART, Michael slips a clumsy latex condom out of his dresser drawer. It seems that, since the mid 1800s and Charles Goodyears discovery of processing natural rubber, condoms could be made of stretched rubber, wrapped around the penis and held in place with a rubber ring. These early condoms were thick as a bicycle inner tube. One imagines that while one partner might enjoy the enlargement, the other might suffer the indignity of feeling nothing at all.
Anyway, by the time Michael was seducing Simon, condoms began to be made from latex, rubber suspended in water rather than in gasoline or benzene. These protective devices were stronger, thinner, and had a shelf life up to five years.
In the next Gaslight Mystery SPARRING WITH SHADOWS, Michael slyly leaves a package for his flatmate. Its a condom made of thin animal bladder, the latest in American-made protection, thin enough and pliable enough to ensure the mans pleasure as well as the other obvious benefits.

Many of the photos that follow are taken from the following website: http://www.ep.tc/condom-envelopes/ a gallery of images assembled by Ethan Persoff, http://www.ep.tc

Thanks, Ethan. I borrow them with gratitude

Just a note: The U.S.-manufactured Sheik and Ramses brands were well established by 1882.  Trojans, also developed in America, were popular then as now.

 


Paper packaging was, and remains, a popular dispensary for condoms.
In the source listed above, Ethan Persoff notes:
The very interesting book Remember your rubbers! (Collectible Condom Containers) by Elliott, Goehring and OBrien published by Schiffer Publishing Co., strangely does not show any of the examples offered here on eBay by us. Does this mean these are rarer than their tin counterparts?
The book also states the following on paper packaging:
Interestingly enough, both the oldest and newest rubber packages are envelopes. India rubbers, latex rubbers and animal membrane prophylactics are found in envelopes. Most hold one dozen rubbers lying flat, though a few can be found with one quarter dozen. Genuine Liquid Latex rubbers came packaged with four (rolled) to an envelope and wrapped in cellophane. Rarer are envelopes with a single rubber in the package…”



Thanks for your interest in vintage condoms. And speaking of that, here is an excerpt from my novel SPARRING WITH SHADOWS, when sly Michael has left an morning gift for his first-time lover Simon.

Excerpt from Chapter 9 of  SPARRING WITH SHADOWS
Simon Hart, a life-long virgin, has just been maneuvered into an anal penetration by his accomplished flat-mate Michael. First he seeks a bath. And then he stands looking down at the bed where the act occurred.
Simon stood in the small claw-footed bathtub, watching the water fill, realizing this room was the only one where he could truly be alone. Even his own bedchamber was now the stalking ground of his new roomer, a circumstance he himself had allowed to exist.
He settled into the water, letting his sticky groin become immersed in the cleansing warmth. He could lavish only about ten minutes here before the next roomer would no doubt beat on the door, demanding his turn on the toilet or in the cast iron tub.
He let his head fall back and his shoulders relax. His mouth, too, moved in an inchoate smile, remembering his astonishing climax. Michael. His conniving, experienced, constantly aroused flat-mate had maneuvered him into an act of anal intercourse.
From that moment, there could be no question as to whether Simon was a practicing omi-palone. Michael had caused him to enter a realm that set him forever after in a special niche. He had just entered the world of homosexual men. Until a while ago, Simon could still fool himself into thinking Michael had taken him by force. From now on, the conniving bastard seemed to be saying, Simon was the sodomite.
He wondered how hed explain that to the melancholy-eyed God he sometimes prayed to. …
~  ~  ~
Following are the Amazon links to the Gaslight Mysteries by Erin OQuinn. (Nineteen 5* reviews, gay romcom mystery-action/adventure.) By the time book number three came out, the men had abandoned the condoms in favor of more spontaneous methods
When two men join forces to solve a murder in 1923 Ireland, they begin to investigate private affairsand none more private than their own.
HEART TO HART The best-seller which started it all, a murder mystery wherein the larger-than-life Michael McCree lets his heart decide his fate; and the surly, angry Simon Hart tries to rid himself of a would-be lover.  http://amzn.to/12gBwlL

SPARRING WITH SHADOWS The second of the Gaslight Mysteries, wherein a man confronts his own sexuality, a determined admirer, and an arch-criminal.  http://amzn.to/14QXtqW

TO THE BONE The capstone of the trilogy, wherein a pesky new agent burrows close as a tick, keeping the men from exploring a series of crimes, and from their own always-edgy relationship.  http://amzn.to/1bEXep2