Monday, September 1, 2014

My Bookshelf

I cleaned my office recently, a major undertaking since for the last year I'd been using it simply as a depository for all of my junk.  (It looked like a room from that hoarders show.)  It took me over 5 hours, when all was said and done, but it's totally worth it. I can now sit in it, write in it, watch movies in it...all far, far away from my fiance because as much as I love him, we've been spending WAY too much time in the same room since he lost his job.

One of my undertakings was um, putting all the books back on the shelves.  The piles of books in that room were pretty impressive, I must say.   And not all of them were books I was planning to keep either. Those went down to the basement with the several boxes of "books to eventually get around to selling."

My book shelves were so pretty when I was done, I just had to take a picture and brag about them:

And now you're saying "Leigh, that's it?"  Yep, I'm afraid so.  I used to have hundreds of books. Really, HUNDREDS.  They overflowed 4 large book cases, into closets, into boxes. I hoarded them. I had every book I had ever gotten since about the 3rd grade. (That's when I became a book worm.)

Alas, I lost my job and then had to walk away from an up-side-down mortgage (I bought my house about a year before the market collapse) and ended up homeless for 6 months (well, I was on my grandma's couch). It wreaked havoc on my book collection.  I sold about 400 of them to a book seller for a nickle each, and I ended up leaving a few hundred behind when I had to leave.  (Foreclose on my house? You're gonna have one hell of a mess to clean up. I left almost everything behind.) And this is what I have left, even after 3 years of "recovery."

The two small shelves hold my non-fiction (the sparse one on the left) and my myth/legend/fairy tale section.  Highlights of that collection include a picture-filled biography of Arthur Rackham and a 1930's copy of Anderson's Fairy Tales, which has the most gorgeous illustrations. I've had it since I was a kid and its where I got my love of fairy tales.

The big wooden shelf I got when I was around 12 or 13.  A neighbor of my uncle's passed away and her relatives told him he could go through her stuff. Well, when he saw how many books she had (several layers against more than one wall), he called me. I took home a hundred at least that day, along with this shelf. I wish I'd taken all of them.  I also saw my first Playgirl that day (she was an eclectic old lady).

I have a mix of American and British paperbacks of Harry Potter. I got rid of my first edition hardbacks because they took up a lot of space. I hear they can be worth a lot of money, but mine were terribly battered.  A handful of my teenage books survived the move and most of them are here. M. E. Kerr was a big favorite, Margaret Mahy, and Paul Zindel. I have a 1970's boxed set of a few of his books on the top there.

 This shelf as a few random books, but it also has some of my most prized books. My Robin McKinley books are on the left, including a very early printing (possibly first paperback but I'm not sure) of Beauty. I've gone through 4 copies of that book since the age of 12 and I read it every year.

On the right are my Bordertown books. I discovered them when I was 13. It's a shared universe fantasy world from the 80s/90s created by Terri Windling full of runaway kids and punk elves on motorcycles. Half of them were already out of print when I discovered them so one was stolen (but paid for) from the library and over the years I've paid outrageous sums for a few battered paperbacks. A few years ago they released a new collection for the first time since 1998 and I cried real tears. Some of the novels have since been re-released too, but the cover art on the old ones are better.  Oh, also here are my My Little Ponies. This is collection #2. The first one was lost when I lost my house--I had about a hundred (all vintage), many of them rare too.  With the new show prices have gone up and I just can't bring myself to start collecting again...but I have a few.

I don't have a lot of comic books.  I'm not a
fan of super heroes and as a result just never got deeply into them in general, though I love pictures with my stories. I have the complete Sandman collection, and a couple of the Sandman books Jill Thompson wrote and illustrated. I think those are out of print. I only have some of Neil's books, but I am a big fan.

I have Warren Ellis's Transmetropolitan series, which I have read over and over.  I have Alan Moore's controversial Lost Girls series. It is beautiful and sexy.  I have some Buffy and Firefly comics but honestly season 8 was just kinda creepy.  I have the single-issue comics from when the show was still on the air too, but they're in my special Buffy collection in the closet. (I had a thing...) Oh, and Tank Girl. Actually I love the art but hate the writing. The movie was better.

Here's a few really old books. My prized possession is an 1898 copy of Study in Scarlet (the bottom one). The middle is a 1920's A Christmas Carol and the top is an 1860's (I think) copy of Merchant of Venice.

I used to have lots more old books, but all are gone now. There is a box of children's books in my closet, my very favorites that I can't get rid of. They include my boxed set of the Little House books.

Losing nearly everything I owned (what I had left all fit in a mini-van, and that included 3 cats in carriers, 3 people & a 50cc motor scooter) has really changed my idea of stuff.  I only keep books I really love. These books pictured are either 'To be read' or 'will read again.'  Most research is done with library books and the internet instead of buying more books.  If I can get it on kindle for free/cheap, I'll just have a digital copy.

Sometimes I really miss having an irrational number of books, but then, I miss a lot of things that I left behind. I try not to dwell on it too much. So these are my books. I hope you enjoyed the tour. What's your bookshelf like?

Thursday, August 28, 2014

New Release: "The Photographer's Muse"

First off, there's a new page on the site, "Other Pseudonyms." Check it out for more stories of mine you might not have read.

This is my work, but it isn't a Leigh Wilder release, so feel free to skip over it if you're only interested in fantasy and vampires and romance. If you're looking for hot BDSM action, on the other hand, you're in the right place.

"The Photographer's Muse" is contemporary M/M erotica with lots of BDSM, rough sex, and dirty talk. It is 8,500 words.

Buy it on Amazon FREE with a Kindle Unlimited account
Buy it on Amazon UK

Nick lives a solitary existence in NYC. Invisible. Alone. Until a photographer walks up to him in the park one day and asks to take his picture. Esteban lives in a world of art, sex, and domination. Nick is introduced to this world and he falls in love with it...and Esteban.

“Are you ready?” Esteban asked. Nick stared at the setup and nodded slightly. “Look, I might have to say or do things that might make you uncomfortable in order to get the shots I need. I promise not to hurt you or molest you, but I might hit or pinch you lightly or say some not nice things. Are you okay with that?” “Yeah.” As long as those not nice things were sexual he was more than okay with it.

“Do you have any triggers?” he asked, and when Nick looked at him blankly he continued. “Words or actions that might provoke a panic attack--anything that might remind you specifically of something bad that might have happened to you in the past.”Nick remembered the sad story in Esteban’s bio. He shook his head. “Nothing ever happens to me.”

Esteban gave him a smile. “Until now."

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Library Books

For a life-long book lover and writer, I am terrible when it comes to library books. In 1992 (I was 9) I checked out a pile of books from the library a mere 4 blocks from my house (and this was 1992 so a kid could walk 4 blocks without their parents getting arrested for child endangerment) and I didn't return them for 6 years. I remember it was a handful of Boxcar Children mysteries and a collection of ghost stories.

 For 6 years these books sat on my shelf, not lost, perfectly safe. Finally in high school, when it became my own responsibility to buy my books and not my mother's, I returned the books (with some weird looks from the librarian) and got my card re-instated. But I couldn't hold on to that card to save my life and eventually the refused to give me a new one and they had to look me up in the computer every time I came in.

 Don't even get me started on the library policy at the university I went to. You could keep books all fucking semester, so there was no rush or reminder that they needed to go back. I would find the books in the middle of the summer from early on the semester before. I had to pay fines before they would let me graduate.

 As soon as I moved to Columbus I got a library card and made one trip, but it was kind of far away and Columbus traffic makes me nervous. Long story short, I was eventually sent a letter from a collection agency. I paid it, and I haven't been back since. Okay, full disclosure: Akron library has sent me to collections once or twice too. I'm thinking if I ever get a library card again it should probably be only to borrow ebooks. :/ I'm a terrible person. Forgive me. (And think of all the money I've given the library all these years to buy new books.)

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Re-release: Depression, Love, & Swimming Pools

I wrote this story in 2012. It was a response to a call for submission from Storm Moon Press, looking for brother-on-brother incest erotica. I did the best I could, writing a story that had a sex scene in it, but definitely defied the over-all tone of most erotica.

They bought it, but the editors wanted me to change the ending. Everyone who read the anthology it appeared in hated it. I have a feeling they didn't have enough quality submissions to publish and they took mine simply because it was coherent. Not that its a bad story. I think it's a very good story. I had BBC's Sherlock and John in my head as I was writing it, and I took a lot of my own emotions (not the incest part, the depression part) and put them into the characters.

But this isn't a happy romance. When the call said incest I automatically knew it couldn't be happy. You will never catch me trying to claim incest is natural, no matter how often I write about it.  Its really not. But this is fiction, not real life, and that means anything can happen. But I wanted it to feel real. I wanted to write about broken characters, and I wanted the most broken part of their relationship to be the start of the healing process.

I don't have this listed under 'erotica' on Amazon, because it isn't.  It isn't a romance either, not really. It is a story of two fucked up brothers trying to be better. There just happens to be incestuous sex in it.

Buy on Amazon
Buy on Amazon UK

Cale might be the younger brother, but he is also the rescuer, the one who fixes everything. When he comes home for a visit he finds his brother Derrick floating in the pool their father killed himself in years before, unwilling to leave. Cale confronts his brother's depression head-on while dealing with his own demons, leading them to an unexpected shift in their relationship.  Cale and Derrick will never be the same again...and maybe that's okay.

This piece confronts the topics of suicide, depression, loss, recovery, and incest.  It contains graphic scenes. Not intended for young readers.

This is a 9,000 word short story.  This story was previously published in Storm Moon Press's "Fraternal Devotion" anthology.

Like the Chartreuse Fairy Book, I'm releasing a collection of contemporary erotic tales. These are my early works (mostly pre-Deadly Liaisons) and are kind of motley.  It's $3.49 and contains:

Saturday Night (M/M)
Depression, Love, and Swimming Pools (M/M)
Brian is Gay (and so am I) (M/M)
Boy (F/F)
In the Dark (M/F)
The Beauty and the Beast (M/F)
The Red Shoes (M/F)

Buy on Amazon
Buy on Amazon UK
Buy on Smashwords

Sunday, July 27, 2014

New Releases! Fairy Lights/Chartreuse Fairy Book

This is a double announcement.  First off, my new story, Fairy Lights, is out.  This story plays with lots of concepts of folklore from a few hundred years ago.  People who disappeared without a trace were taken by the fairies. Children born with birth defects were actually changelings--fairy children who had replaced the stricken child.

Also available in the collection mentioned below!

Lawry was born...different from others. He is aware he is nothing more than a scientifically explainable defect of nature, like a six or seven-toed cat, but the rest of the world calls him demon, monster...changeling.  When his mother tells him that in fact, his father is a fairy, he finds the whole idea ludicrous. But the eve of the Midsummer Night Ball is upon them, and that night everything changes.  He meets a fairy prince, who promises to take him home.

This is a M/M erotica piece. It is 5,300 words long.

Second, if you want a good deal on my stories, now is your chance.  I'm compiling the following stories into a single $3.49 volume called The Chartreuse Fairy Book.  (This is of course a play on Andrew Lang's colored fairy books.)  It is 30,000 words total, all of the stand-alone fantasy and fairy tale stories I've written so far.
1. Fairy Lights (M/M)
2. Roses White, Roses Red (M/M)
3. Price to be Paid (F/M)
4. Battle of the Dragon Slayer (F/F/M Dragon)
5. Goblin Market (F/F)
6. The Summoner & the Satyr (F/M Satyr)
7. Fancy & the Mechanical Man (F/M)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

New Release! "Another Full Moon: Deadly Liaisons SCD #1"`

Warning: there isnt a single sex scene in this story.  Sorry about that.  My aunt has been bugging me about writing a Detective Nova story, so here it is.  #1 of who knows how many stories. We'll see what happens.

Let me make it quite clear that police procedurals are not my thing. I very much struggle with writing crime-solving, so of course DL has been quite heavy in it.  So why don't I write a story about a cop?

We get into the background of the werewolves in this story & Damian, Jamie-boy, and Simon make cameos.

I wrote this under the assumption that the reader hasn't necessarily read Deadly Liaisons. It's a completely different genre after all. Apologies for any redundant info. This is a 7,000 word short story.

Buy on Amazon US
Buy on Amazon UK
Buy on Smashwords

Detective Julie Nova's life was ruined three years ago when she was bitten by a werewolf. Now she's the lead detective in New Franklin, Pennsylvania's Supernatural Crimes Division. A vamp tramp (someone who enjoys being bitten by vampires) is found ripped to pieces after a full moon. It's up to an exhausted Julie Nova to fight her urges for a snack and a nap, and bring the wolfish killer to justice.

...Will post in the morning. I'm on the wrong computer.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

New Release: Deadly Liaisons #5: Daybreak

I swear I did not forget about this series.  This took a long time to write. And I'm very sorry. It's also a little different from the rest of the series because it has a 3rd POV.  I don't know if this will happen again. It might, but it might not. I'm sure you won't really mind.

So! Here it is. It's 24,000 words long, which makes it the longest yet (though not by much) and the most important part--a whole bunch of stuff is on sale this week!

Drain Me Dry--FREE (as always) on Amazon US, and Smashwords.  UK, if you report to Amazon that you got this title free at smashwords that would be awesome--getting this story free in the UK would boost my sales a LOT.

The Punishment--FREE on Smashwords.

Deadly Liaisons Volume 1 (the first 3 stories)--Only $2.99

Bloodlines (book 4)--Only $1.99

Buy it on Amazon
Buy it on Amazon UK
Buy it on Smashwords

Both Jamie-boy and Damian have been suffering since their break-up, but they are thrown together when a vampire is brutally murdered. Damian is too depressed to care and ready to let the cops deal with it--Jamie-boy is willing to do some investigating on his own. And then there's Lucas, a vamp tramp with a Daybreaker's tattoo on his neck. Whose side is he on? How many people is he willing to hurt to get what he wants? This is a M/M romantica containing explicit sex, rough sex, BDSM, blood play, and violence.

Hot blood thinned with alcohol gushed into Damian’s mouth. He drank deep, not even savoring the intoxicating flavor. He didn’t know the name of the half-dressed young man under him and didn’t particularly care. Just some vamp tramp looking to get in with the vampire in charge. He still wore his t-shirt, his jeans around one ankle. Damian had fucked him hard, the boy coming even as he moaned in pain.
The human was gasping in pleasure now as Damian drank long and deep, the alcohol in the boy’s blood adding to what already coursed through his system. He wasn’t sure he even remembered what sober felt like. It wasn’t a state of being Damian was particularly comfortable with anymore.
He took one last gulp and pulled away, not taking much care and ripping the flesh around the two puncture wounds left by his fangs. The tramp lay on the bed, a smile on his face. He didn’t even notice Damian tucking himself back into his pants and leaving the room, not bothering to shut the door behind him.
Veronica met him at the base of the stairs. “Where’s your friend?”
“Taking a nap,” he answered and walked on.
“That isn’t how the rules are supposed to work,” she called after him, but he ignored her.
The club was overflowing with people. It was Saturday night, winter was setting in. Vampires were fond of winter. Longer nights meant more time on the streets, more chances to find someone tasty to spend the night with. The band that night, The Pack, played heavy death core, and members of their mostly werewolf and human fan-base added to the usual crowd.
Damian sat down at the bar feeling heavy and full. Jilly finished filling two pitchers of beer and sent them off with a pair of vamp tramps before turning her attention to him. “The usual,” he said.
“Your old usual or your new one?” she questioned, giving him a disapproving look. “Because I’m not sure you’ll be able to stand if I put much more booze in you.”
“Just get me a drink.”
“No need to yell,” she huffed and waltzed back down the bar, returning with a wine glass dark with blood. He took a sip. There was barely enough vodka in it to call it a bloody driver. He sighed and sipped at it anyway.
Simon joined him. “The same as he’s having, but triple the alcohol,” he ordered.
“You’re cut off,” Jilly told him.
“You can’t do that. Damian, tell her she can’t do that.”
“She’s the bartender,” Damian said. “She makes the rules.”
“You’re cut off too,” she said.
“You can’t do that. I’m the boss.”
“And I’m the bartender.” She stalked away. Damn, the fledglings were getting uppity lately. Of course, Jilly had more sense than the rest of them combined, so Damian let her get away with it.
Jilly returned with a glass of blood and set it down in front of Simon. “What’s wrong with you tonight anyway?” she demanded of Simon. “I got enough trouble dealing with his drunken ass all the time.” She cocked her head in Damian’s direction.
“Has no one ever told you to respect your elders?” he asked.
“Yeah. But my elders need to give me good reason.”
“It’s November thirteenth.” Simon said, answering her original question.
“So? What does that mean?”
Damian knew. He’d forgotten what day it was, but the date November thirteenth would always be burned into his mind. “The Philly Riot of sixty-four,” he answered for Simon.
“You were there?” she asked Simon, slightly impressed. “I thought all the vampires in that riot were killed.”
“All but two,” Damian said.
“He pulled me out,” Simon told her, sipping on his drink. “I would have stayed and gotten myself killed.”
“His sire was one of the ones killed.” Damian left out the part where she was the one who orchestrated the entire massacre. Fifty-one vampires and a hundred and fourteen humans, all dead.
“I’m very sorry,” she said. “That must be terrible for you.” She reached under the bar and gabbed a bottle of vodka, pouring a generous shot into Simon’s drink. Damian held his glass out, but she ignored it.
“He only knew her for three weeks,” Damian said, annoyed.
“Man, don’t think I won’t fight you,” Simon snapped.
“Boys,” Jilly warned. “If you don’t behave yourselves I’ll cut both of you off for a week. How do you feel about that?”
“I’m in charge,” Damian protested again.
“And I’m…almost in charge,” Simon agreed.
Her long brown ponytail flew around her head and she turned briskly and marched away. Damian watched her make drinks with efficient precision, passing them out and collecting cash. Maybe he needed a new protégé. Simon was all grown up now. He could handle himself in any situation and was as capable of running this town as Damian. Maybe he needed a new project to get him out of this rut. Jilly could be that project…she was cute too, in a bitchy sort of way. Maybe she could be two projects at once.
The phone at the bar rang and Jilly picked up. He watched her entire body language change in an instant, from relaxed and playful to tense and still. Damian was on his feet before he could process what he was seeing, and Simon followed suit, stumbling as he got off his stool and knocking into Damian. What a graceful pair of idiots, Damian thought.
Jilly hung up the phone and waved one of the waitresses over to her. Rachelle took Jilly’s place behind the bar and Jilly walked over to them. “That was Detective Nova. Someone’s killed a vampire.”
“Where?” Damian demanded, but instead of answering him Jilly’s hand shot out to unclip his keys from the belt loop of his jeans. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?”
“Driving you,” she answered. She waved at Rachelle, who stepped over to their end of the bar. “He’s cut off,” she said pointing to Simon.

“Fuck it,” he said. “I’m coming too.”