Meet Author Nico J. Genes

Hello Everyone and welcome. Thank you for visiting last week and meeting Novelist / Writer Victoria Avilan. It was a pleasure to see you all and I really appreciate your support. Also, I want to thank you for sharing the podcast interview I had with Suzie Carr on her Curvy Life podcast. Click below to view it.

Curvy Life Podcast interview

Today I have asked author Nico J. Genes (Reverie Series) to guest on today’s blog. She also has a forthcoming book, Lessons in Life, which I helped beta read, debuting very soon. Nico is an artist who paints her pages clearly. Her books are full of mystery, drama, and romance and get’s you wondering. I invite you to find out more about Nico. Read on!

“If I have more than one life, I would definitely dedicate this one entirely to you.”
– Nico J. Genes, ‘Magnetic Reverie’

Tell us about yourself.
Recently I participated in a self-promotion seminar where they recommended to ask our friends what do they think about us. It was a funny exercise because my friends seemed to see a bigger and brighter picture of myself. I don’t lack self-confidence, I don’t have a big ego either, I am just a human being trying to make a difference through everything I do.

What is your book series, “The Reverie Series” about?
At first glance, it is a different kind of love story. “Magnetic Reverie” is about Lana, who is discovering her new sexuality by falling for Claire, the girl from her dreams, while being married to Greg. It starts with the struggle and mix of emotions between dreams and reality, it continues by seeing what thoughts are passing through Lana’s mind fighting the prejudices and also fearing how the world would judge her if she would decide to come out. But also it’s about decisions. Whom should she chose, Claire or Greg? “Reverie Girl” shows us also Claire’s point of view and some before and after. Overall, the series is full of emotions, sometimes sad, as real life it’s not always a fairytale, sometimes full of desire, as this is something natural when there is a strong chemistry between two people, it’s about remorse  and trying to figure out what the best decision is, it is about forgiveness. The main message: love should not be judged.

Reverie Girl CoverMagnetic Reverie Cover


Why did you choose India as a setting for part of your story?
Have you visited the Taj Mahal?: In the sequel, India plays an important role especially because of Claire’s acceptance of who she is and I found it the best by using the analogy among the diversity that is present over there. Yes, I have visited Taj Mahal and I was really impressed by it. You have to see it in reality. Actually, I have visited all the places I describe in my series and I just hope that I managed to make someone curious about seeing them in reality as they are all worth seeing.

Me: After reading this, I want to travel to these places.

Do you believe in love at the spiritual level?
Yes. My favorite movie is Café de Flore and I think this is the reason why I loved that movie so much. My trip to India made me start thinking about the spiritual life.

How would you describe your protagonist, from the series?
Lana is beautiful, smart, young, self-confident, sociable, it seems she has everything, except for a child. Claire, on the other hand, lacks self-confidence, she is gorgeous but she doesn’t see it; she had a tragic childhood, she doesn’t socialize, doesn’t trust many people, in many ways she is the opposite of Lana. But with all her imperfections she is more real than Lana, who tends to be superficial at times. Together though they bring the best of each other.

How do you compare writing short stories to full-length novels?
Two of my write-ups have been chosen to be included in the anthology of short stories and poetry called Limitless released as a charity project. I would say that the main difference is that when writing short stories you need to be more concise, choose every world a bit more carefully than in full-length novels. It depends though on the type of both. I also think that some writers prefer short over long and vice-versa, I am both. In full-length novels, I write as long as the story asks me too.

Why did you choose to be a writer?
I listened to my inner voice. It has allowed me to take a path to use my creativity and tell some unique stories. In the adult life, it started with the idea for another book that I am yet to write and then The Reverie’ series that I chose to write first. I liked the idea, I saw the message that I could bring it out there so I worked on the plot and really enjoyed writing it.

What is it like living in Croatia? Where would you take a friend to see the sites?
I was living in the south of Croatia, at the seaside, in the city of Šibenik and surroundings that are all mentioned in my series. Especially for those of us that don’t live by the sea, I think I can call it a dream come true (even when the weather conditions weren’t the most favorable :-)). I would definitely take my friends to see those exact places as they are beautiful.

What are some of your favorite places to visit in Europe?
I was born in Romania, I am living in Slovenia, I lived in Croatia and also traveled a lot. I think it is really hard to pick any favorite place in Europe or worldwide. They all have beauty in them. I know for me that wherever I am close to nature I feel the best, so that is my favorite place.

What is a favorite ethnic dish you like to create for friends and family?
Well, I don’t really cook much, and I am very picky regarding food, my friends and family know that 🙂 I do have a favorite dish. It is called eggplant salad. It’s typical Romanian and it must be prepared by my mother to have that special taste that I love.

Who is your favorite European musical artist? Have you seen them perform live?
I do like many artists, but now to placing them on the map I would have to mention Queen and The Cranberries, unfortunately, I didn’t have the chance to see them live. I do like a lot Siddartha, Slovenian band and recently discovered the lovely Ditka, Slovenian singer and I have been to their concerts.

Which languages do you speak? How does it feel to be multi-lingual?
Instead of getting lost in translation is better than you know the languages from the countries you live in. Besides Romanian, my native language, I speak Slovenian, Croatian and English. I would love to improve my French and as Romanian, I would be very fast in mastering Italian and Spanish, but I didn’t find the time yet.

On your blog, you review books. What types of stories touch your heart?
I am first of all a romantic soul so I will always enjoy a love story. I do read through lots of genres and I appreciate the most those that give me an additional food for thought and expand my knowledge and views.

What do you like the most about reviewing other people’s books on your blog?
I will be honest and say that until I became a published author I never wrote reviews for books, I never thought about it and it never happened that I came in contact with the author. Since then I started to post reviews on Goodreads and on the retailer’s platform. Recently I was thinking that I could do much more helping authors by posting the reviews also on my blog and share them on social media. I review known and less known authors/books and I love the most when I discover an amazing book that unfortunately didn’t get the luck to be seen by the right people so it can get the appraisal it deserves. I hope with the extra visibility on my blog these books will have a higher chance to be seen. There are many jewels out there.

“The human being that finds the most of happiness by relating and helping people around me making their life more satisfying and meaningful, by: offering a shoulder to cry on when in need, sharing happy moments together, everything to make a life better.”

Would you like to elaborate on the meaning of your quote?
This is a description from my page explaining shortly who am I and what is the purpose of my blog. Often in life family, friends, colleagues have told me that I am a good listener, I calm them down, I help them pass the crises, I help them grow, I inspire them, motivate them etc, so I thought why shouldn’t I expand that on a wider level, of course within my time limits and capacities. If people would only know what difference they could make by only smiling a bit more often or saying a nice word when needed, I am sure they would do it.

How do you view the ‘glass being half-full’ during challenging times and what do you do to stay positive?
It’s a constant challenge. Since I turned 21 I started seeing things differently, I decided at that moment (I don’t remember what made me change my mindset but I am glad I did) that I should try seeing a good side in everything, no matter how bad it is. Since then, even when I don’t see immediately any good reason I do see it later. Maybe it’s autosuggestion at times, either way, it helps.

What is next for you?
I am in the process prior to publishing my third book. This one will be in a different genre, a nontypical self-help/motivational/personal growth book. I am really thrilled about it and again I have to say that it is written with a message, actually through every story present inside I present a different message, overall they could all conclude in be a better human being, be positive, believe in yourself, accept yourself. I do have many other ideas, within lesfic and outside my debut genre, and I can’t wait to materialize them.

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Be sure to check out Nico’s links for more exciting news.




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And take a look below

Audio Interview:
Video trailer:

Places Revealed: &–CuYG6X0

I want to thank Nico for stopping by today. Stay tuned for her new book, and my book reviews for her books, ‘Magnetic Reverie‘ and ‘Reverie Girl.’

Today is the last day of the Rafflecoptor. You don’t want to miss a chance to win a signed copy of Awakened my Fate or an Amazon gift card.

Click here to enter the Rafflecoptor

Until Next Time,

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Copyright 2018
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Meet Author / Novelist Victoria Avilan

Hello Everyone and a warm welcome to you. Thank you so much for stopping by last week. It was great to see you all and to meet many new friends. I can’t thank you enough for all the support you’ve given me for my book, ‘Awakened by Fate’. Down at the bottom is a Rafflecoptor that you can enter to win one of my prizes.

Today I am featuring novelist, Victoria Avilan. She is the author of ‘The Art of Peeling an Orange,’ ‘A Small Country about to Vanish,’ and now, a cookbook featuring 140 of her mother’s translated recipes. You are going to fall in love with her. Read on.

Author Profile

“You paint because an image burns a hole in your belly. I write because a story eats me alive from the inside and I’d go insane if I don’t. It isn’t my choice. I’d write if you, or the whole world, were illiterate.”

Anna Garibaldi – ‘The Art of Peeling an Orange’

Tell us about yourself.
SELRES_aa8abcc3-f4fb-4e87-a3c8-702a948f5ba7SELRES_48f06265-fdff-491b-9ee9-67974632ce1bMy family was convinced that I studied into the night because my light was always on and the music played in my room. In fact, I lived a double life. When night came, I acquired magical powers and I could live in my imagination, painting, reading, and writing. I still live a double life, only now I live reality at night, as a nurse, and imagination during daytime.SELRES_48f06265-fdff-491b-9ee9-67974632ce1bSELRES_aa8abcc3-f4fb-4e87-a3c8-702a948f5ba7

What was it like growing up in Israel? Do you have a memory you’d like to share?
My memory of sitting behind my best friend as she played the Moonlight Sonata was so vivid—down to the smell of furniture polish and her mother’s voice—it inspired me to write my second novel, A Small Country about to Vanish. That book is a fictional answer to the question: What was it like to grow up in Israel?

Israel was my home and my family, still is and always will be. My life there? Imagine me in a big family with drama, intrigue, music, food and a lot of loud rambunctious laughter. Every holiday, every weekend, every birthday was My Big Fat Greek Wedding Israeli style. I had gazillions of cousins around my age, and not a dull moment. For alone time to be creative, I stayed awake at night.

My Delicious Life, my book of my mother’s translated recipes, includes a lot of vignettes from my childhood. Writing it was a trip in so many ways. Life was never boring in a family that wanted to know everything I did, everyone was part of the news, the frequent wars were very close and personal and everybody had a political opinion whether you wanted to hear it or not. Mostly I felt safe, protected and loved. As I wasn’t a hit with boys, I sometimes felt lonely, left out, frustrated, like every teenager regardless of country.

Cook Book Cover
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Victoria and her momI was very tempted to call this piece, “My Delicious Life: the food that made me a lesbian,” but we thought better of it… This book is a gift to my beloved Ima on her 85th birthday and a tribute to her rich and beautiful life. For years Ima collected recipes and somehow that handwritten collection survived three children, four wars in the Middle East, five grandchildren, and a succession of household pets. Ima cooked for armadas, often with leftovers for the next day. In these recipes I venture to preserve the flavors and aromas of my insanely happy childhood among my food-loving and cheerful tribe. Rather than calorie counts, you get the sweetness of maternal love wrapped in dough and fried in sticks of butter, with lots of powdered sugar on top. To maintain the authenticity of the work, I have included Ima’s actual handwritten notes in the paperback edition. The idea to write it came on Ima’s last visit from Israel to Los Angeles, when she gave me and my friends cooking lessons that drew guffaws of laughter from all of us. That is nothing new. Losing it laughing with my mother for something totally stupid is the story of my childhood. The book contains vignettes of my early life and, as one of my reviewers noted, numerous conversations between Ima and me on the topic of: What quantity of ingredients does “some” or “more” or “a few” or “a bit” means. Bon Appetit!

Let’s talk about your book, ‘The Art of Peeling an Orange.’ What do you like most about it? How did the plot come to you?
One of my reviewers likened this novel to an on-going, long poetic orgasm… “Orange” started as an attempt to “sculpt” the perfect woman. I wrote a few first drafts, then it went into a drawer as a half-baked idea. I wrote A Small Country and started a third novel about a writing class.

After a few quarters in UCLA studying with my teacher and friend Claire McNab, I picked “Orange” up again with more of a clear idea what it should be. I gave my perfect creation, Anna Garibaldi, a fatal flaw, because life isn’t perfection.

In “Orange” I induce a dream state, a journey to the underworld, very different from that of Orpheus searching for his Eurydice. “Orange” is MY underworld. If you let me, I take you by the hand and lead you down to a land so magical, a land of absolute love, in which your emotions are made of colors. You are doomed and you are blessed and you don’t know which you prefer. If you walk down with me willingly, you will have an out of this world experience. But “Orange” isn’t for everyone. That’s how I wanted it to be.

Book Cover 3

What or who inspired you to write?
Books. Stories my mother told me and my brothers before we could read. Stories a beloved uncle used to ad lib and tell us. I’ll write about my Uncle Shlomo one day. Learning the magic of fiction from an early age. Learning to hold a pen and put meaningful words on paper. The love of language and languages. Obsessive, constant reading of books from the age of 6 or 7. I didn’t have dolls, I had books.

Tell us about your experience with the UCLA extension writers program? Would you recommend it?
We each have at least one big story in us, so if you wish to write, write. If you want to do it professionally, take an acclaimed writing program and do the grueling work. I was lucky to be introduced to the UCLA Extension by my dear friend, novelist and instructor extraordinaire Claire McNab. I took fiction writing classes from other teachers and learned from them all, but brilliant Claire became my mentor. I sat in her classes for years, drinking in every word, until she retired. Those classes elevated my writing to a professional level. Now Claire has retired from teaching. I still have a vision of her in my head, constantly directing my writing, correcting my grammar and ideas. A truly great teacher has that effect.

What other authors do you follow?
I read all genres and styles. Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, Ann Patchett, Philip Roth, Margaret Atwood, Virginia Woolf, Milan Kundera, Lillian Faderman, Shirley Jackson. Each one of them has a shrine/shelf in my library. Mine and my wife’s that is. My favorite Israeli authors are Amos Oz, Lea Goldberg, Etgar Keret, I could go on and on.

Book Cover 2

What inspired you to become a Registered Nurse?
Nursing school was a bet with someone who said, “You can never be a nurse, because you are too disorganized.” My mom said, “If a sick person asks for a glass of water, he’ll die by the time you get it.” My mother would ask me to do something and I’d say, “Just a minute.” Then I’d go back to what I was doing and forget all about it because my head was in the clouds. I can’t be a nurse? Let me show you. So I went into nursing for the f**k you. I stayed, because it became my second nature.

I finished nursing school because I finish what I start even if it kills me. I stayed for the love of making things better for a sick baby and because I became good at what I did. Nursing made me part of an amazing group of people who could laugh and cry and take care of others and each other. Nursing forced my feet to touch the earth.

Oh, and I had a crush on my school nurse…

Having your experience at Children’s Hospital, would you ever consider writing a children’s book?
If I do it will be a post-apocalyptic dystopia YA sci-fi, in which the grown-ups are the goodies for a change and the kids are evil little shits. The book will have a lot of sex scenes rather than fade-to-black love scenes. It will be banned by educators, which will make it all the more interesting and desirable for the young readers who will download the kindle version and read it in secret under their school desks. The book will become a cult favorite and a bestseller made into a soppy gazillion dollar flick by Steven Spielberg.

But, no. Nothing for children planned so far. Regarding kids, I love them dearly, I save babies’ lives for a living in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and I would have made an awesome mother, but instead of kids, I was lucky to be given the gift of time to live in my imagination. My kids are at least one dog at a time, all rescues, all very loved by Tracey and myself.

Does Queen Mocha, your dog, hang out with you when you write?
I can’t relax and write unless I hear her snoring next to me.


What is a favorite thing to do in the South Bay of SoCal? What it is like living near the ocean?
Take a rainy day, barefoot beach walk. Come home covered in sand. Make coffee or a cocktail, depending on the time of day, and sit by the computer to live my parallel world and write fiction. I know I should get out more, but I hardly ever notice what other people like to do, unless it involves making a lot of noise. Then I put on my noise canceling earphones and fly up to my planet. When Tracey and I have a day off together, we are quite happy to spend it in each other’s company, eat all day and binge on a favorite TV show.

What type of music do you listen to?
I prefer opera, (Callas and Angela Gheorghiu) but I love all music and no music at all, as in complete silence. Hypnotic electronica helps me go deep into my mind and write while forced to do other things, such as driving to work. Since I don’t have time to sit and read and I will die without fiction, my favorite music is actually a great reader narrating an audible book, any genre. I have a list of hundreds of books I want to read/hear.

Where would you recommend taking friends out to enjoy an evening together?
To the opera, theater, my table for dinner.

What was the last movie you saw in the theatre?
Spielberg’s “Ready Player One.” Don’t start me on that film. I read the book twice, back to back because I fell in love with its main character, his obsession with the 80s pop culture, his underdog status and his dealings with bullies. Wade reminded me of Harry Potter, as the way he deals with his disadvantages elevates him from the crowd of rich bullies and works in his favor. I know a two hour movie can’t get the entire inner story, but Spielberg’s movie—while great on special effects—misses the meaning of the underdogness and instead focuses on the heartwarming friendships. Fake heartwarming gives me indigestion.

Victoria on the beach

What is your favorite thing to bake?
Cookies melt my heart, yet I’d rather mix cocktails.

What is next for you?
A mind f**k noir novel that’s been polluting my head for the last 25 years. It won’t leave me, just like ‘The Art of Peeling An Orange.’ The story is vodka clear in my head and now I’m testing and trialing different ways to tell it. I may take years to figure it out, so I’ll probably publish my short stories collection first.

I had to stop writing all fiction for one year and write/produce ‘My Delicious Life’ as a gift for my beloved mom’s 85th birthday. I promised her a cookbook and I’ve actually had great fun with it. The cookbook also made me new best friends around the world, who served as my consulting chefs and helped me cook, bake and photograph dishes.

Be sure to check out Victoria’s links. Click below for more exciting news and happenings.

Victoria’s Amazon Author Central page
Victoria’s Website
Victoria’s Facebook profile page


Book Cover 3
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I want to thank Victoria for stopping by. Next weekend, I will be interviewing author Nico J. Genes (The Reverie Series). I’ve read both books, and they are fun and heartwarming. You are going to want to meet her. She will also be giving hints about her new forthcoming book, debuting soon.

Also, I will be featuring an interview I had with author Suzie Carr on The Curvy Life podcast. You don’t want to miss this one. I will be sharing another teaser from ‘Awakened by Fate.’

I wanted to also mention the Rafflecoptor. All you have to do is click on the link below to be entered for a chance to win one of our prizes, including a signed paperback of ‘Awakened by Fate’ and a gift card. So tell your friends to come over and enter.

Click here to enter for a chance to win!

Until Next Time,


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Copyright 2018
Published with permission.
Photos subject to copyright.

Meet Author Anne Hagan

Good afternoon Friends and welcome. Today I am featuring author Anne Hagan, creator of the ‘Loving Blue in Red States’ series. I have included a nice excerpt for your enjoyment at the bottom of the blog. Anne Hagan is brilliant in her writing and will catch your attention on the first page. Her writing motto is – Family, Friends, Love, Murder and Mayhem. Come on over and meet this creative artist. You can’t help but fall in love with her.

Also, do be sure to check out the giveaway at the end of the interview Anne is doing in conjunction with author E.A. Kafkalas. E.A. Kafkalas is the author of ‘Frankie and Petra’ and ‘The Second Heart’. Anne’s books in the giveaway are ‘Relic’ and ‘Broken Heart’.

30 Authors. 43 Autographed Books. 3 Lucky Winners! #EpicLesficWin

Introducing author Anne Hagan.

Author profile picture

Tell us about yourself.
– I’m over 50…nearly 51, the mother of one, a son, a postal worker and a 22-year military veteran of the Army and the Ohio Army National Guard. I’ve been married to an amazing woman who is my polar opposite in many ways for nearly 7 years. We’ve been together for almost 11 years. We’re different but our differences are our strengths. We complement each other well.

How many books do you plan to write for ‘Loving Blue in Red States’?
– The ‘Loving Blue in Red States’ series is a short story series. There are currently five 9,000 to 11,000-word stories. Four are new and complete romance stories and one focuses on a young but already established couple trying to find their place in the world. There are lots more red states. I plan to continue the series with at least five new stories coming in the late Spring of 2018.

Book Cover

How did you feel when the first book in the series was first released?
– ‘Loving Blue in Red States’ is a great series but it wasn’t my first series. The Morelville Mysteries series is a lesfic mystery/romance series that currently stands at nine books. It was my first series. I spun a cozy mystery series off that, ‘The Morelville Cozies’ that will number three books and counting sometime in September. I also have a couple of full length lesfic romances.

Which genres do you like to write in?
– I love writing mysteries featuring strong women. Romance is a little – okay, a lot – tougher for me to write but I do enjoy it. Writing a romance is such a different art form from writing a mystery; even a romantic one. I plan on continuing with my Loving Blue series…and maybe someday turning some of the shorts into full length stories as my vehicle to keep writing romance.

What is one thing you like about the town you live in?
– I live in a tiny village, population about 450, out in the middle of nowhere. Farms are all around outside the village. My wife grew up on a small family farm a few miles out of the village. Her grandparents lived in the house that used to be right next door to us here in ‘town’. Everyone knows everyone here and just about everything about them. That would make some people uncomfortable but, here, in this little burg, it draws everyone closer. Neighbors help each other. Neighbors pull together for the good of the community. We have our detractors, being a lesbian couple in a very conservative, ‘red’ area, but most people here take a live and let live attitude with us and with just about everyone they encounter.

GCLS Chicago 2017

Can you elaborate on your visit to Golden Crown Literary Society?
– I went to the Chicago GCLS Convention (Con) in July. It was my first time going to a GCLS Con, so I was a con virgin. Being among so many luminaries of lesfic for several days was an amazing experience. I met so many authors whose books I’ve read for years. I admit to fangirling a little bit. I also met some fans of my books and maybe even made a few new ones. I learned a ton in master’s classes for authors and at panels focused on different genres and issues surrounding lesfic.

It’s definitely a con that’s worth going to if you’re an author. I do have some heartburn though with the costs for pure readers to attend the con. Ticket prices, whether for one day or for the run of the con, are steep compared to cons in other industries and even other literary cons. A literary con needs to be as much about the reader – if not more so – than about the care and feeding of the authors. The readers should be the focus. The GCLS Board is considering ideas to become more reader focused and I’ve certainly voiced my opinion. Over the long run, for the continued life of lesfic, I think we’re going to be seeing a lot of changes.

One thing that was very clear at the con was the fact that lesfic doesn’t have the appeal to younger generations of readers that it has had for women who are over 35 or 40 years of age. Younger women can see themselves as lesbians everywhere; television, movies, online in forums, on user sites and in videos and video games. They don’t have to turn to literature to find other women who love women or to see themselves reflected.

Describe a perfect day.
– I can’t even begin to speculate. Ask me again in five years when life has settled a bit and maybe we have the 2nd home on Douglas Lake in Tennessee, right outside of the Smokies that we’re dreaming of! Right now, no matter what we plan, our plans always change, at least a little bit.

What was the last live music performance you went to?
– There were two notable ones in 2015. My wife is a huge Reba McEntire fan. We saw her at the Ohio State Fair in the Summer of 2015. She’s a phenomenal performer. Also, I’d always wanted to see the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. We saw them the day after Christmas in 2015. They were everything I hoped for and more. Since late 2015, life has been more than a little crazy. Concerts haven’t been high on the ‘must do’ list.

Anne's Puppy

What do you enjoy doing when you are not writing?
– I really would like more time to write! We spend so much time with family, especially my spouse’s family. I love them all to death, don’t get me wrong, but writing often takes a back seat to whatever the latest thing my nieces, nephew and my great nephews are doing. We’re constantly on the run for all things family related. The things we get into though do make great fodder for stories. 

Did you do any writing in school?
– I did a little in high school but I didn’t really feel the writing bug until I took a creative writing class in college.

Where is the most exotic place you’ve visited? How was it?
– I’m not much of a world traveler. I’ve been all over the U.S. and into Canada. It’s not that I don’t want to travel the world, I just haven’t had the opportunity. There have been other priorities. I’ve been to Hawaii. I found that to have exotic elements but it was very laid back. We’re doing a Bahama’s vacation in 2018…24 of us. That will probably be as ‘exotic’ as it gets for me for a while.


What is the most daring thing you’ve written about? Can you share?
– I guess it would be writing lesfic at all. When I started writing Relic, my first book, Sheriff Melissa ‘Mel’ Crane wasn’t going to have a foil or even a mention of her sexual preference. It was just going to be a mystery, period. The story didn’t work. Making it lesfic and bringing Special Agent Dana Rossi into Mel’s world changed everything.

Can you share with us your passion for your Hagan’s House of Horrors?
– My wife and I both acted in Haunted Houses in the past. My time in one was in my distant past. Her experiences doing that are a lot more current. Anyway, it’s always been her dream to own and operate one. I enjoy it but it’s really her dream. For me, it’s a lot of work supporting her, advertising, dealing with vendors, doing the accounting and taxes and doing all the other things that come with being the chief administrator. She’s the creative brains behind the haunt. It’s all about the business behind the scenes for me.

Hagan's House of Horrors

We ran into a snag in 2016 with some fire codes that changed significantly. We’re sitting out 2017 and trying to decide how or if we want to move forward. We have a couple of options but one involves a large expenditure of cash and the other a huge investment of time (and a little cash) to get back to code for what is really a seasonal business with a very short season.

Me: I love haunted houses and everything having to do with Halloween. I’m looking for some great haunts for my Halloween entry in late October 2017.

Besides writing, how do you participate with the LGBTQ community?
– We moved from suburban Columbus, Ohio to a small village in a rural area more than an hour out of Columbus in October of 2013. Since that time, we’ve participated less in LGBT focused activities in that area and more in supporting the needs of our new local community, as a whole. There is a tiny LGBT support network out here but we’ve found acceptance within the community we live in by being active participants in the things that matter more to people here than political activism. Things like hanging (and taking down) Christmas lights, throwing spaghetti dinner benefits for those in need, collecting clothing and food for families that could use them and so forth. It’s activism in our own way…one heart and one mind at a time.

Christmas Time

Me: Anne took this picture of her nieces and nephews participating with a raffle to raise money for the village Christmas lights last year. They got $650 worth of donations and they sold over $1,100 worth of tickets. The village population is about 450 total people. Way to go!

 What is next for you?
– That’s another tough question. I’ve got lots of ideas for books and plans into 2018 and beyond. Ideally, I’d love to quit working a day job and focus only on writing but I don’t see that happening any time soon. Instead, I see me spending at least a couple of more years working with the U.S. Postal Service and writing when and where I can around family events and obligations. I’ve been talking with a couple of other authors about leaving the indie life and starting a publishing company. We may very well do that but it’s going to take a few years to build a foundation and to gain author clients and momentum. We’ll see where we are in 2020 or so.


Now for the giveaway Anne is cohosting with author E.A. Kafkalas. There are over 30 authors (43 books), including Anne Hagan’s ‘Relic’ and ‘Broken Women’, and E.A. Kafkalas’ ‘Frankie and Petra’ and ‘The Second Heart.’

Included in the lot is S.W. Andersen’s ‘Switchback.’ I am currently reading this one, so stay tuned for my upcoming review. Enter for your chance to win this collection and see how great Lesfic literature is.


The Grand Prize winner will receive 24 signed books, chosen at random from the collected works, the 2nd & 3rd prize winners will get 12 & 7 signed books respectively.

Winners will be chosen randomly.

These two authors are 2017 GCLS winners:

Karen D. Badger – 1140 Rue Royale
Ana B Good – The Big Sugarbush

Also, I’d like to mention author Lori L. Lake, who was a GLCS winner last year. She has three books in the giveaway that you are going to love.  ‘Eight Dates,’ ‘A Very Public Eye,’ and ‘Jump the Gun’. Lori has written professionally for many years and her work is well known. When she’s not writing, she coaching other writers. At the same time, she serves as the head of the Governance Committee for the Board at the Oregon Writer’s Colony.

Click here to enter the giveaway.


Thank you so much, Anne, for your time and enthusiasm. Anne’s books are available on Amazon and I am recommending ‘Loving Blue in Red States – Sweetwater Texas’, which I have included an excerpt below. You’re going to love this one. Be sure to check out Anne’s links so you can keep up with her and reach out.

Website: (you can read her blog and sign up for her email list from the pop up or from the sidebar on the site)


Twitter: @AuthorAnneHagan



Book Cover

As promised I have included a nice excerpt for ‘Loving Blue in the Red States – Sweetwater Texas.’ Enjoy.

“Whatever you say,” Cass said. “I didn’t come back here to argue with you.” “Why did you come back here?”  

Cass held up the release form, face out. “This. I need just a little bit more information before I become someone’s guinea pig.” 

Emmie did her best to control her temper as she addressed the brash woman. “It’s not a requirement. You’re free to skip participating and just go on your way whenever I’m… well, whenever I’m doing the things I need to do with the class for my research.” 

“Not very confident in yourself, are you, Emmie?” She said her name with added emphasis. 

Emmie threw her hands up. “I thought you didn’t want to argue? Look, if that’s all, I really do need to get going. I have a little bit of a drive to get home and I have work to do yet this evening.” 

“Abilene?” Cass asked, as Emmie gathered her things.  

“Other direction. Other side of Sweetwater, here, out a little ways.” 

“Really?” Cass tilted her head and cocked an eyebrow. 

Emmie glanced at her and then glanced quickly away. Rather than answer, she made a show of winding up the power cord for her laptop and stowing it in her bag. 

“My nephew is a Junior on the team this year.” 

“That’s nice for him. They’re looking pretty good,” she conceded as her tone went from sarcastic to monotone. 

“You didn’t even ask who he is,” Cass pointed out. 

“I’m sorry. Who, pray tell, is your nephew?” Emmie asked as she picked up the laptop bag and started for the door. 

“Wow, you’re something, you know? You’d catch more flies with just a little more honey, honey.” 

The strawberry blond whirled to face the other woman. “Don’t call me honey!”

“Whoa! Sorry!” Cass held up her hands in mock surrender. She still had the release form in her left hand. 

“Just give me that. I’ll dispose of it on the way out.” 

“I’ll walk out with you. Wouldn’t do to have you walking out alone tonight.” 

“I can take care of myself.” 

“And I’m absolutely sure that you can but there’s more safety in numbers and, besides, I didn’t say I wasn’t going to participate; only that I want more information.” 

Emmie sighed and started walking. Cass followed. 

“What’s the topic of your thesis?” 

Emmie slowed and waited for the other woman to come alongside her. “How economic failure influences adult education.” 

“Ouch,” Cass said. 

“Is that a problem?” 

“Not for me. I’m not an ‘economic failure’.” 

“I never said you were. It’s just that programs like this appeal to people trying to better themselves, get out of the cotton fields, off the ranch…” 

“What’s wrong with working on a ranch?” 

Emmie groaned. It was coming out all wrong. “Nothing. I grew up on a ranch. It’s practically the only life I’ve known.” 

“Obviously not; not if you’re in a Master’s program. You’ve probably been a student most of your life… never had a real job.” 

“Now who’s making assumptions?” Emmie flung back at Cass. She reached the door going out, pushed it open hard, then strode ahead toward her car. She wanted to put as much distance between herself and the insufferable Cassandra Prater as she could, as quickly as she could.

Click on the link below for your copy of ‘Loving Blue in Red States’

Purchase ‘Loving Blue in Red States’

Check out Anne’s Amazon Author Page to purchase her other books, including ‘Relic’ and ‘Broken Heart.’

Until Next Time,


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Printed with permission.
Copyright 2017