Nell Iris


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Great to know

This week I read a book: The Writer’s Guide to Psychology – How to Write Accurately About Psychological Disorders, Clinical Treatment and Human behavior by Carolyn Kaufman. It was interesting and useful and I learned a lot.

But I’m not going to talk about the book in its entirety. I brought it up because in it, I found this really interesting fact, that’s useful for writers, and I wanted to share it:

Skärmavbild 2017-11-04 kl. 19.10.11

So great, right?? 😊 If you’ve ever had a discussion with anyone on the internet, you realize how true this is. How easy it is to misunderstand when you can’t see the other person’s face or hear their tone of voice. (Which is why I overuse emojis: I don’t accidentally want to upset someone by saying “You’re crazy” when what I really mean is “You’re crazy 😉😁.” Quite the difference.)

It might be the greatest tip for writing dialogue ever. So, excuse me while I go practice my newly acquired knowledge. 😊

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Release Blitz: Merry Gentlemen by Josephine Myles

 

Buy Links: Smashwords
Length: 48,000 words
Cover Design: Harper by Design 
 

Blurb
’Tis the season of goodwill to all men… even the one who dumped you.

Riley MacDermott is going places. Managing the annual Bath Christmas Market—which involves long hours in the cold and a whole lot of hassle—will secure the promotion he needs to afford to move out of his noisy, top-floor flat. Where not even his balcony is safe from an aggressive seagull.

The last stallholder he expects to see is his ex. Riley never recovered from their break up, and five years on the old chemistry still sparkles. Shame they can’t seem to manage a simple chat without arguing.

Stan never wanted to leave the love of his life, but the pull of the woods was too strong—and Riley wouldn’t hear of leaving the city. Reconnecting is painful, but Stan still jumps at the chance to stay with his old flame during the Market. And damn the consequences.

As the weeks pass, the two grow closer than ever. But despite scorching sex and cozy intimacy, they both know they face a cold and lonely future. Unless they can figure out a compromise.

Warning: Contains sex in a shed, a seagull with a grudge, glamping, awful Secret Santa underwear, misuse of an ABBA song, and as many wood-related puns as the author thought she could get away with.


Excerpt
You could lose yourself in Stan’s eyes. Well, I could. They reminded me of sun-bleached denim, with a deeper indigo ring around the outside. They were the kind of eyes that spoke of hard work in the great outdoors, and if it hadn’t been for the fact they’d been just the same back when he’d slaved away as a housing officer, I’d believe they really had been lightened by the sun. His hair certainly had. I’d always thought of him as a dirty blond rather than a honey one.

I still thought of him as a dirty blond, although not because of the colour of his hair.

Before my brain could get hijacked by thoughts of just how dirty Stan could be, I recovered my manners and stuck my hand out.

“Stan. Fancy seeing you here. I had no idea. Really.”

Stan stared at my hand like I was offering him a slice of mouldy pizza. I was just about to snatch it back when he grabbed it and held on.

“Ri? You look… You haven’t changed. Not one bit.”

Normally I’d preen a little at a comment like that. Make some allusion to Botox—not that I had any desire to freeze the expression out of my forehead, as how would I cope if I couldn’t do my patented single-eyebrow raise?

But right now, with Stan holding my hand in his rough, calloused—oh my God, he had genuine, honest to goodness callouses!—paw, I found it hard to do anything other than fight down my body’s instinctive response to him. I wanted to hit him and I wanted to lick him all over, and I couldn’t bloody well figure out which urge was winning.

Actually, right now I needed to stop paying any attention to my body and concentrate on keeping my cool. Couldn’t have Stan seeing me ruffled.

“Well, you’ve definitely changed,” I said. “You’ve got that whole rugged, outdoorsy vibe working for you now.” I didn’t need to hide the fact I was checking him out, thank Christ, so I took my time drinking in the sight of him. “Going back to nature really does pay off, doesn’t it? Shit, you never bulked up this well in the gym. And you’re tanned in the winter, but not a streak of orange to be seen. It’s a modern day miracle. Hallelujah.”

“I don’t need to fake it,” Stan growled, tilting his head back to look down at me and making the most of his three-inch height advantage. It was his arrogant-bastard pose, and he bloody well knew I was a sucker for it because I’d once made the mistake of telling him. Never, ever let a toppy git know just how much they turn you on, or you’ll spend your whole bloody life in a state of perpetual turned-on-ness. Was that even a word? It was now.

“What happened to your hair?” I said, reaching out for a lock. “Totally hot, but aren’t you getting a bit old for the whole surfer look? And you’re way too landlocked, down in deepest, darkest Somersetshire.”

“Piss off, Ri,” Stan said, but there was no heat in his words. The heat was all in his eyes, beaming out and frying me like a laser beam. They’d find me later, nothing more than a pair of melted boot soles on the cobbles.

Was that angry heat or turned-on heat? Couldn’t figure it out on him either. I had to face it, we both had ample reason to be pissed off with each other, but five years was a long time to hold a grudge.

“Much as I’d love to get on my way, it’s actually my job to check up on you. See if there’s anything you need any help with. Lend a hand, you know.” Jesus, could I have made that sound any more like a come-on? Clearly my mouth was in cahoots with my dick rather than my brain. I bit the inside of my lower lip, just to show it who was boss.

But Stan just carried on staring at me, while the sun-warmed denim of his eyes frosted over.

“Right. Just your job.” Oh, that guttural Slovakian accent! After the best part of a decade of living in the UK, Stan’s had definitely mellowed compared to when we’d first met, but it was still sexy as hell. “I’ll make sure I let you know if there’s anything you can help me with.” He stepped a little closer then, and tucked both thumbs into the waistband of his combats, hands framing his package like I needed any reminding of what was hidden in there. Well, not so hidden. Whereas I was a grower, Stan was most definitely a show-er, meaning his tackle was almost as big flaccid as it was erect. Not that that was a disappointment. More of a relief, really. If he’d got any bigger when hard, I’d have had to make like a snake and dislocate my jaw before giving him a blowjob.

And I really didn’t need to be remembering blowing Stan right now.

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English through and through, Josephine Myles is addicted to tea and busy cultivating a reputation for eccentricity. She writes gay erotica and romance, but finds the erotica keeps cuddling up to the romance, and the romance keeps corrupting the erotica. Jo blames her rebellious muse but he never listens to her anyway, no matter how much she threatens him with a big stick. She’s beginning to suspect he enjoys it.

Jo’s novel Stuff won the 2014 Rainbow Award for Best Bisexual Romance, and her novella Merry Gentlemen won the 2014 Rainbow Award for Best Gay Romantic Comedy. She loves to be busy, and is currently having fun trying to work out how she is going to fit in her love of writing, dressmaking and attending cabaret shows in fabulous clothing around the demands of a preteen with special needs and an incessantly curious toddler.

Website and blog: josephinemyles.com/
Facebook: facebook.com/josephine.myles.author
Twitter: @JosephineMyles
Newsletter: eepurl.com/hrQ4s
Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions

 


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#SuperShort

Don’t eat the bunnies

“Jonah, where are you?” I called as I approached the trunk of a fallen tree—his favorite spot in the forest behind our house. There was no sign of him. I glanced at my watch and squished my eyebrows together. Tilting my head back, I let out a yell. “We’re gonna be late.”

The sound of a breaking branch reached me, followed by rustling vegetation and running paws. A second later, a big wolf appeared in the clearing, leaped up on the trunk, and climbed to the top. It didn’t stop until it was directly above me. The sun illuminated its thick fur, making it glitter and shine in the light. It was breathtaking.

I looked up as it lowered its head, stretched out its tongue, and licked me, drenching my face with saliva.

“Yuck,” I laughed and scrunched up my nose. “Cut it out.” I reached up and scratched behind its ear. “You know I prefer real kisses.”

The wolf jumped down and landed gracefully next to me. He swept his tongue over my hand before he started shifting in front of my eyes. His form elongated, stretched, and grew, and soon he’d shed his wolf persona and stood before me in his human form. My darling Jonah. Naked as the day he was born and more magnificent than anyone I’d ever met.

I wiped my face clean of his slobber and he laughed, a joyous sound that bounced between the birches. He flung his strong arms around my waist, lifted me as if I weighed little more than a feather, and spun me around. His exhilaration rubbed off on me and I laughed with him. I wound my arms around his shoulders and buried my nose in the crook of his neck. Taking a deep breath, I shuddered. I adored his scent after a shift. He smelled of dew drops. Of pale green tender leaves and the earth itself.

“Did you have a good run?” I mumbled into his skin.

“I did.” He started walking back home with me still in his arms, and I hooked my legs around his hips.

“You didn’t eat the bunnies, I hope.”

Jonah chuckled. “No, my love, I didn’t eat the bunnies. You told me not to.”

I rewarded him by kissing his neck. By running my fingers down his spine, and rubbing my groin against his abs. He growled at me as if he hadn’t left his wolf behind completely. “Stop that if you don’t want to be late.”

“Being on time is overrated,” I said and crushed my mouth against his.

When we showed up on my mom’s doorstep two hours later, she didn’t agree.

Inspirational picture found on Instagram. 

Skärmavbild 2017-10-30 kl. 00.27.09

That was my first foray into the paranormal. Did you like it? 😁

 


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Release Blitz and #giveaway: Holographic Havoc by L.M. Brown

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Book Title: Holographic Havoc
Author: L.M. Brown
Publisher: Self-Published
Cover Artist: studioenp – the amazing Emmy Ellis
Genre/s: Romantic Comedy, Futuristic (Near future)
Length: approx.18,300 words/49 pages
Release date: October 27, 2017

Blurb

Hayden Knight’s job is simple. All he has to do is sell his father’s latest invention to Tate South, the Acquisitions Manager of the biggest supplier of the best in cutting-edge technology. The virtual assistant is designed to help the user in all aspects of their life, but Hayden views the holographic helper as nothing but a nuisance. Keeping his annoyance to himself is relatively easy until a major technical glitch causes Tate to see and hear Hayden’s assistant.

Hayden and Tate are thrown together while they try to figure out what has happened, and the chemistry between them is electric. Hayden soon finds that convincing Tate that he needs a Holo-Assistant isn’t as important to him as persuading him he needs Hayden in his life.

The attraction is mutual and the sparks fly. If only they could get rid of their holographic third wheel.

Buy Links

Amazon Universal Link
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Goodreads

Excerpt

Hayden finally gave up on sleep at half past six, got out of bed and stumbled to the bathroom. His assistant followed him.

Unfortunately, there was no way for Hayden to turn off the assistant for a little privacy. The first time it had hovered beside him while he took a piss he had tried to shut it down. That was the moment he discovered the assistant was a permanent fixture in his life. The only way to remove it would be to undergo surgery to remove the neural implant, something his father wouldn’t allow until he had thoroughly tested it.

The Holo-Assistant, a highly advanced piece of technology was the brainchild of his father and Hayden was one of the guinea-pigs testing it for him. A program designed to manage all aspects of a person’s life, from scheduling appointments at work to ensuring a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle. It was every app a person could ever want, all rolled into one holographic assistant. If Hayden had known what he was letting himself in for, he would have thought twice about it. Not that his father had given him much choice. As head of the marketing department for Knight Inventions, it was Hayden’s job to sell the product and his father believed that the only way for Hayden to truly believe his sales pitch was for him to have experienced the wonders of the invention for himself.
Hayden tried to ignore the holographic nuisance as he stepped into the shower and closed his eyes.

A loud groan coming from outside the cubicle caused Hayden to jump and bang his elbow on the tiles. “What the hell?”

He rubbed his eyes and eased open the shower door. Hovering in front of him was a holo-screen playing porn. The actors were giving it their all, moaning and groaning loud enough to wake the dead. His assistant stood beside the screen with a stupid smile on its face.

“Shut down film,” Hayden snapped. There was a time and a place for porn and this unholy hour of the morning wasn’t it.

“Would you like an alternative?” the assistant asked, bringing up a long list of titles and stills from what appeared to be every porn film Hayden had ever watched and more besides.

“No, I bloody don’t,” Hayden replied.

“I believe you’ll find it will assist you in maintaining your schedule.”

“Excuse me? What schedule are you talking about now?”

“As part of maintaining your well-being I have allotted you time to masturbate.”

Hayden goggled at the assistant. “What did you say?”

“I have allocated you time to masturbate,” it obligingly confirmed. “With the assistance of a film of your liking it is estimated that you will require two minutes for this task.”

“Oh for crying out loud.” Hayden slammed the door, shaking the glass, and shut out the frustrating hologram. He wasn’t sure what annoyed him the most, the fact that the wretched program had allocated him time to wank, or that it had only allowed him two minutes for the job.

About the Author

L.M. Brown is an English writer of gay romances. She believes that there is nothing hotter or sweeter than two men in love with each other… unless it is three.

When L.M. Brown isn’t bribing her fur babies for control of the laptop, she can usually be found with her nose in a book.

Social Media Links
Blog/Website
Facebook Author Page
Twitter
Google+

Giveaway

To win a $10/£10 Amazon gift card

please visit LM BROWN’S blog and leave a comment on the new release announcement post.

Entries must be received by midnight GMT on 4th November 2017.
A winner will be chosen at random on Sunday 5th November 2017.

RELEASE BLITZ SCHEDULE

October 28

Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews
Valerie Ullmer | Romance Author
Hoards Jumble
Socially Awkward Book Nerd
From Top to Bottom Reviews
BFD Book Blog
The Way She Reads
Smokin’ Hot Reads Book Blog
Millsy Loves Books
Tangents and Tissues
The Blogger Girls
Stories That Make You Smile
MM Good Book Reviews
Nerdy Dirty and Flirty

October 29
Bayou Book Junkie
MJ’s Book Blog and Reviews
Nell Iris
Zipper Rippers
Lily G Blunt
Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
Gay Book Reviews

October 30
Drops of Ink

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

Gay-book-promotions-logos-jayAheer2017-square2 copy 2

 


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#SuperShort

79a9d6490ea88bd2d06c113202ddc971Inspirational picture borrowed from Pinterest. Source

Angel and Firebird

It’s the middle of the night, and I wake up with his image burned into my retinas, like always when I’ve dreamt about him. In my dreams, he’s smiling at me, with eyes sparklier than sapphires and the rye blond hair messed up and adorable. All I want to do is reach out and take the hand he holds out for me. Follow him wherever he wants to go.

My angel.

I roll over on my stomach and bury my wet cheeks in the pillow and inhale, as if hoping his scent will still linger after all this time. I remind my foolish heart that it’s impossible and it cracks open in my chest and poisons my bloodstream with sorrow.

Five years ago today, I lost him forever. My soul mate, best friend, my reason for living. When he was taken away from me, he brought all my joy with him and I don’t think I’ve smiled once since.

I will never forget that day. It was his twentieth birthday and our hometown arranged its first ever Pride parade. We were planning to attend. Of course, we were; we were young and in love and wanted to scream it from the rooftops to anyone willing to listen.

I wore a rainbow T-shirt, but he was much braver and threw off his top and put on a pair of angel wings. “You always say I’m your angel,” he said, and my heart swelled so much I was afraid it would burst out of my chest. He was more beautiful than ever and I wanted to drag him back home and run my hands all over his silky smooth chest and make love to him while he wore his wings.

I didn’t. Maybe my life would be different if I had.

Throwing off the covers, I stumble into the bathroom and splash cold water on my face. I stare at myself in the mirror. My eyes are dull and puffy and I’m so pale I’m almost translucent. A ghost would look tanned next to me. Even my hair has lost its will to live and hangs listlessly over my forehead.

I won’t be able to go back to sleep, so I pull on a pair of sweatpants so worn they might disintegrate any second. They used to belong to him, and I feel closer to him when I wear them. I won’t ever throw them away.

I refuse to listen to everyone saying I need to move on and get rid of his stuff. Just the thought of it gives me a panic attack. I don’t have them nearly as frequently these days as I did in the beginning, but trying to imagine our place without his things is a sure way of triggering one.

“No,” I say out loud to the shadows lurking in the corner of our empty apartment. My apartment. Whatever.

The vivid image of him lingering in my brain erases the lines between reality and dream. I know it’s my place now. I do. I can even go full days without thinking about him. And then he shows up when I sleep. Sometimes he seems so real I can almost feel him spoon me in our bed. My bed.

I shake my head, trying to get rid of the cobwebs cluttering my mind. Grabbing his favorite throw blanket, I carry it to the living room and dump it on the couch before continuing to the kitchenette where I chug down a bottle of water. I dry my mouth with the back of my hand and stare out the window. It’s pitch black outside but sounds of people moving around outside in the hallway drift in through my front door. I scrunch my eyebrows together and glance at the clock on the wall. Three thirty. Are the neighbors having a party again?

A loud banging on my door, followed by a panicked “Fire!” makes me jump and my heart speeds up. “You in there, Phoenix? Get out, get out.” Hasty steps disappear from our apartment and the procedure is repeated next door.

The damned fire alarm must be broken again, but I’m frozen to the floor.

“Move, dammit,” I mutter and force my feet to walk to to the bedroom to get my phone and wallet. I grab a hoodie and hurry to the door. The stink of smoke finds its way into our home and I cough. As I reach for the handle, I remember something.

The photo album! I can’t leave without my pictures of him.

I run back to the living room to grab my most precious possession and press it tightly against my chest. I squeeze my eyes shut for a second, gathering courage…and I see him.

He’s reaching out his arm to me. Beckoning me to come to him with his index finger. Fly to me, Firebird, he laughs.

I’d forgotten he used to call me that. How he used to say my name was perfect because my hair looked like a raging fire.

I open my eyes, but he lingers. I hesitate. If I stay, I can finally be with him again.

My gaze flits between his blanket on the couch and the door. The echo of my neighbor’s frightened “Get out, get out” rings in my mind, but his voice is clearer. Closer. As if he’s standing next to me, whispering in my ears.

Thick smoke wells through the gaps around the door, and the window for me to escape narrows. It’s now or never. Muted sirens approach in the distance. Help is on the way.

I love you forever, Firebird.

Filled with a calm I haven’t felt in years, I walk over to the couch and curl into a ball underneath his blanket. It’s the same color blue as his eyes, and maybe, just maybe, if I try hard enough, I can evoke his scent. It was rainy days in spring, laughter, and love.

More than anything, it was love.

A cough racks my chest and it’s getting harder to breathe.

I close my eyes.

His last moments on earth was a wonderful summer day, and we walked the Pride parade hand in hand. Everyone looked at him and his snow-white wings and I was so proud that he’d chosen me. That he loved me. He turned his head and smiled at me. The sun shone brightly in the sky, creating a halo around his head. For the longest time, I thought it had been a sign. That maybe God called my angel home, that he was too good for this world.

Our perfect day was destroyed when we were on our way home late the same evening and five people jumped us. They screamed obscenities at us. Rained punches on us. Kicked us. A boot to my stomach made me bend over and puke my guts out. The last thing I remember is my angel grabbing my hand. His lips moved, but even though I couldn’t hear his voice I knew what he was saying. I love you forever, Firebird. Again and again, until darkness overtook my world never to leave again.

When I woke up, he was dead.

I’m getting drowsy. Every breath is like inhaling fire and my eyes water. Is it the smoke or tears for him?

“I love you, my angel,” I mumble. I drift away.

When I open my eyes, he’s there. Just as I remember him. His smile is blinding and his eyes shiny with happiness and he’s wearing his wings.

“I’ve missed you so much, Firebird,” he says and cups my face with long, bony fingers. He feels so real. Like he’s actually here this time.

I lean closer to him. I’m desperate to feel his lips against mine. “I thought I’d never see you again,” I whisper as tears spill down my cheeks.

He wipes them away with his thumbs. “I’ve been waiting for you.” His words are balm to my wounded soul and I can breathe again. The darkness that has filled my chest for so long is gone, replaced with his light. His love.

“Don’t ever leave me again,” I plead.

“Never,” he promises, surges forward, and kisses me.


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Release blitz and #giveaway: Whiskey Kisses by Anna Martin

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
Length: 19,000 words
 
Blurb
In a small town about an hours’ drive outside Dublin, there’s a whiskey distillery.

Jim has worked in the distillery as its business manager since he returned to his home town after getting his degree. Whiskey is a slow business and rural life is quiet, but Jim takes it in his stride. That is, until the handsome and mysterious Mr Aiden Rooney moves into a room above the local pub and sets off a flurry of gossip.

Aiden’s an artist, and his devil-may-care attitude is a revelation to Jim. But he still lives in a small town in rural Ireland, and he’s not even sure if he wants to be out and proud. The choices they make could change everything, if only Jim dares to follow his heart.

 

Author Bio

Anna Martin is from a picturesque seaside village in the south west of England and now lives in Bristol. After spending most of her childhood making up stories, she studied English Literature at university before turning her hand as a professional writer.

Apart from being physically dependent on her laptop, Anna is enthusiastic about writing and producing local grassroots theatre (especially at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where she can be found every summer), visiting friends who live in other countries, Marvel Comics, learning new things, and Ben & Jerry’s New York Super Fudge Chunk.

Although her most recent work is in the LGBT Adult Fiction genre, in the past Anna has worked on a variety of different projects including short stories, drabbles, flash fiction, fan fiction, plays for both children and adults, and poetry. She has written novels in the Teen/ Young Adult genre, Romance, and Fantasy novels.

Anna is, by her own admission, almost unhealthily obsessed with books. The library she has amassed is both large and diverse; “My favourite books,” she says, “are The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee and Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood.” She also several well-read copies of Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park books and re-reads the Harry Potter novels with almost startling regularity.

Anna claims her entire career is due to the love, support, pre-reading and creative ass-kicking provided by her closest friend Jennifer. Jennifer refuses to accept any responsibility for anything Anna has written.

 

http://www.facebook.com/annamartinfiction
http://www.pinterest.com/annamartinficti/
http://instagram.com/missannamartin
http://www.twitter.com/missannamartin

 

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#RainbowSnippets

rainbow-snippets

Weekends means Rainbow Snippets-time here on the blog, since I’ve joined the Rainbow Snippets group on Facebook. According to their description, “it’s a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction—a WIP or a finished work of even 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).”

summer-divider-clipart-rainbow-bunting-hi-png-o1yiij-clipart

I continue where I left off last week. The snippet is from my new untitled WIP, Benji is the bartender at The Broken Brick Bar (from Cinnamon Eyes), and Mr. Grunge is a newcomer.

Here are the previous snippets if you need to catch up: 1 | 2 | 3

“S-sure.” That look knocked Benji off kilter and he stomped himself on the foot to get his ass in gear. He filled a tall glass with ice cubes, poured the drink, and topped it up with the requested lime, all the while glancing at Mr. Grunge out of the corner of his eye.

What on earth had caused such misery? And why was the guy even here? If he was hurting that much he should be at home, curled up on the couch in his jammies while eating a whole pint of Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Therapy and sobbing along to The Notebook.

summer-divider-clipart-rainbow-bunting-hi-png-o1yiij-clipart

To be honest, I feel like curling up on the couch, binging on Chocolate Therapy myself. I can’t seem to find my writing flow and every word is a struggle. I think I suffer from performance anxiety: I fear that Benji and Mr. Grunge’s story won’t be a worthy companion to Cinnamon Eyes. That’s why I don’t write series, guys! And this isn’t even a series, just a companion book.

So any suggestions on how to get myself out of the writing funk would be greatly appreciated. 🙂

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You can find me on FacebookTwitter, or Goodreads. Feel free to stop by and say Hi! I love new friends!

I’ve also gotten a Facebook profile for my pen name, so if you feel like it, I would love to be your friend 🙂