Bang!

I’m gonna start July off with a bang! Or some other fireworks holiday kind of metaphor that’s terrible…

Rounding up some info: my books are 25% at Smashwords! So if you’ve been waiting for a great time to grab a copy of Hush or What it Takes, go for it!

If you want LOTS of great books, Interlude Press has some *amazing* books coming up that are on sale — all of their pre-order books — which includes Pene Henson’s upcoming novel, Into the Blue.

I have to write this book a proper review, but for now, just LOOK at the gorgeous cover.

This book is lush and beautiful and will just grab your heart. It got a starred review in Publishers Weekly and has gotten some great reviews ahead of it’s release — so I promise you, this book is really something very special.

You can preorder Into the Blue in print and e-book format, and I cannot recommend it more!

As for the rest, who knows? We are hard at work on Idlewild (yay!) and I am messing with an idea for a fourth book I am SO EXCITED FOR, which will be my Camp NaNo project. Wish me luck and motivation!

Finally, I am going to encourage everyone to get involved in the 1000 Book Challenge. Interlude Press and The Trevor Project have partnered to raise money for The Trevor Project and to get LGBT YA into libraries, head over here to find ways you can support this awesome project.

 

4.5 Stars for Hush

I was lucky enough to get a fabulous review from Prism Book Alliance this week. I wanted to share before our Twitter Takeover Tuesday (hint, today at 6PM EST, I’m @judesierra), if y’all had any questions about this novel either!

“Cameron Vargas meets Wren early on in his first year of college and is immediately attracted. What ensues is a game of compulsion, obsession, and sexual discovery that eventually and inevitably begins to lose its rules and boundaries. As Cam and Wren’s interactions become increasingly intense, the question of whether or not they can each provide what the other needs in a true relationship becomes paramount.

Jude Sierra is a gifted wordsmith, her early love for writing poetry clearly evident in the lush, vivid imagery and detail she weaves within her prose. The opening paragraphs ofHush mark her as a new favorite of mine, setting the stage for the finely-crafted story that is to follow:

Cameron Vargas’s introduction to college, from its first days into weeks, turns out to be a blur. Later he’ll think back to that time and wonder how he managed to create the canvas of such a pivotal time in his life into a sort of watercolor, pastels that blurred into one another with few distinct shapes or forms.

There was a canvas: complete, yes and from a distance a scene portrayed. But the finer points were lost, a fact he wouldn’t realize until later. Until after. 

Cam would like, in part, to say the difference is simple, that there was a distinct before and after. That his life before was simply before Wren. In chaos, in the months of searching to find the ground, he’d say this: that Wren had come into his life like a freak storm, unexpected and swamping, leaving him capsized and floundering.

I was immediately entranced.

Cam and Wren have an undeniable chemistry, their intimate scenes erotic and fiery with a powerful emotional element that simmers and burns just under the surface. Ms. Sierra allows the reader into her characters’ heads and hearts, and the results are visceral. Cam is completely enveloped in his profound desire for Wren, while Cam’s need for control, connected to a past that is revealed in agonizingly slow bits and pieces, is fierce and clearly defined. Cam is sweet and captivating; Wren is alluring and mysterious. Together they are magic.

Peripheral characters are also well developed and bring added dimension not only to the story, but also to the main characters’ personalities. Interesting roommate and sibling relationships are given ample page time and shed valuable light on the various aspects of Cam and Wren’s natures. Fully fleshed and authentic, these characters help round out the book and work together to create a strong sense of community, their concern for Cam and Wren’s well-being evident and heartfelt.

As tender as it is intense, this new adult m/m romance blends the intoxication of sexual discovery, a captivating touch of the paranormal, and the acute pain and euphoria of newly blossoming relationships into a unique, fascinating gem of a story. It is one that I will definitely be re-visiting and highly recommend…”

So many thanks to PBA for this. I am so happy to hear that people enjoyed Cam, Wren & Co. And who knows, maybe one day we’ll get to go back to their little world…

~*~

Hush on Goodreads
Interlude Press
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
All Romance eBooks

 

I wrote a book and then….

Crickets chirped into the internet ether on this blog.

Pretty sure I’ve done this twice now, but I’d have to go back to the days after Hush was released to be sure.

The thing about it isn’t that I don’t love blogging (I do), but that I am just incredibly BAD at figuring out how to time things. I wrote Hush and somehow managed to align stars so that I was in serious edit phases at the same time as I was writing What it Takes. The day Hush when up for presale? Was the day I had to turn in What it Takes as a manuscript. I was very tired and emotional that day. The next day I pitched a couple of ideas to my publisher because apparently I can’t help myself? Thankfully, I’ve had a lot of time to write this third book I am working on. Not thankfully, I didn’t really think through what it would be like to try to write a book while IN grad school.

Not easy. At least not for me. I juggled grad school and writing the third book for NaNo (or well, the biggest chunk), but have been struggling to get it all together since. And in the time between those, What it Takes came out. A book coming out is a huge emotional investment and event, and the days after are so weird. Like…is anyone reading? Did they like it? What’s happening in the great old world?? The only thing one can do is check Amazon rankings to see if they change at all and obsessively check Goodreads for reviews (people don’t review as much on Amazon? Not sure why, but I’ll tell you guys, it’s pretty helpful to the author, because once you hit a certain number — 50 maybe? — your book starts to pop up as a suggested book which = more exposure).

I was very lucky after What it Takes came out to get such lovely reviews, it has made me so happy to know that you guys loved it! Keep on reviewing, it makes our days and helps our books 😀

That said, I am so close to a finish line with book #3 I can taste it. But I’ve been trying to do well in school (or well, keep up on readings, I do well in school as a rule), juggle new job responsibilities, and right now, deal with some really heavy life news.

Hence, a tiny bit of silence.

That said, Hush and What it Takes just had some great pre-Valentines sales a bit ago, so if you read and want to chat or ask question or anything, I LOVE that. I love interracting with people!

If I’ve read YOUR book recently, and haven’t reviewed (or perhaps not even recently, I owe Melissa Graves a review for her AMAZING book, Tainted Heart, that came out in OCTOBER how awful am I?) it’ll come! I’m just very behind and overwhelmed. You’ll fine out the most about what’s going on in my insane life at the moment if you follow me on twitter. Apparently I can only handle a commitment to 140 characters at a time 😉 I’m @JudeSierra.

In the meantime, if you have NO CLUE what I’m talking about, both Hush and What it Takes are available for purchase now at:  Interlude Press Web Store
AmazonAll RomanceBarnes & NobleBook Depository, Apple iBookstore, Smashwords, and Independent Bookstores

 

 

Coming January 2016…

Yup, the time has come for me to announce (here…we’re late to the game here as it’s been announced elsewhere) that my second book, What It Takes, will be published by Interlude Press on January 14th! I’m guessing that means presale will be happening in November-ish, so start saving your pennies now!!

cover official

Moments after 8-year-old Milo Graham moves to Cape Cod, he meets Andrew Witherell—launching a lifelong friendship built around a secret fort, and plans for the future. 

 When Milo is called home from college to attend his domineering father’s funeral, he and Andrew finally act on their mutual attraction. However, both know that it’s not just the past that makes the way ahead complicated. Each wanting what’s best for the other, they sever all ties.

Years later circumstances bring both men home again, and a rekindled friendship brings forward long held feelings that will not be denied. But will they have what it takes to find lasting love?

~*~

I am so very excited to share this book with you all! It’s *very* different from Hush, but still very me. I am incredibly proud of this book. And wow, that art! We need to give Nellie I. a huge hug and bravo for the gorgeous cover. Just wait until you see the back, it’s so romantic and beautiful.

If you are somehow already curious and want to know more, I believe I gave out some info in some of my blog tour posts for Hush. Easter egg hunt!!

~*~

My first novel, Hush, is currently for sale at Interlude Press Web Store
AmazonAll RomanceBarnes & NobleBook Depository, Apple iBookstore, Smashwords, and Independent Bookstores

Welcome to Carlina University

Hush is set in a fictional university, Carlina University, in a suburb of Chicago. One of my favorite parts of creating this location was getting to research and create an inspiration board for what Carlina might look like. I love the look of older buildings and dorms on college campuses (In fact, the one with the snowflake lights is the dorm I lived in when I was in college).

There is something whimsical and lovely about this style of architecture and the beautiful landscapes I found. The midwest in seasonal changes is utterly beautiful. The stunning changing of leaves as fall bustles in with wind and the cold edged winds; the hush created by a snowfall that blankets everything; the heat of waxing summer, shaded by greening of late spring leaves – all of these were things I kept in mind as I put these characters into this world I created.

I love getting to see examples of images authors had in mind when writing, and I thought you all might enjoy seeing what *I* had in mind as I wrote Hush.

carlinainspiration1 carlinainspiration2 carlinainspiration3 carlinainspiration4 carlinainspiration5

Helloooooooo!

::title to be read in the voice of Mrs. Doubtfire:: (if you haven’t watched it, go go go).

I’ve been way remiss here, and I apologize profusely. Life can be so inconvenient always getting in the way of the fun stuff.

Right now there is a lot going on in the background over here in silly Judeland. Things are picking up on project #2, which I am thrilled about. I am very, very excited to share more details on that in the coming weeks and months. Of course, since I don’t like to rest, there’s a tiny prickling in my fingertips which might mean there’s a project #3 on the horizon!

Speaking of fun things on the horizon, I alluded to a new contest that’s coming up in my last post: The Sock-Off.  There will be an official announcement kicking off the contest in the coming days. For now, start hunting down pictures, taking pictures, making, drawing up designs of the most unique, hilarious, out of this world socks. Those will come in handy because the winner of this contest will be receiving a free, signed copy of Hush.

What’s with the socks, you ask? Sock Saturdays was one of those impulsive moments that came to me from the ether, and became a funny insight into Cam and Nate’s friendship as well as a fun twist on an old school college tradition. You’ll hear a lot more about what it means to be soxiled, as they called it, soon enough.

Need to know all about it now? Lucky for you, Hush is available for purchase in tons of places, ready to be delivered right into your hot little hands!!

Hush currently available for purchase at:

Interlude Press Web Store
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
Apple iBookstore
Smashwords
Independent Bookstores

Hitting the Highlights!

As my virtual blog tour closes out, I wanted to take an opportunity to thank each blog that hosted me, but also to round up my favorite moments — I had some fun interviews and lovely reviews! Stay tuned at the end of this post for a sneak peek at a new contest I’ll be hosting soon!

Amanda C. Stone’s interview was great! Who would I be as a superhero? (Dame Decisive. I talk about her a little more). Who would be a stripper at my birthday party? If I didn’t die of embarassment, of course the answer would be a tossup between Matt Bomer and Natalie Dormer. There are other great questions, read on for fun answers!

Thanks to MM Good Book Reviews for the following:

“If you like unique characters, a touch of supernatural powers, college kids, coming of age and some very hot man-sex…this is for you.”

Because Two Men Are Better Than One challenged me to think of an invention I’d want at the snap of my fingers and asked me what kind of candy bar I’d be (hint: Sweet, creamy and smooth).

Wicked Faeries and I did a fun interview as well. What do I obsessively snack on when I write? Who is my favorite all time character ever? (Ok, that’s impossible. But I do gush about my love for Lord John Grey here. I even named one of the birds in my tattoo after him!). Also, because I’m weird, I talk about why the heck I love reading a book about Ebola over and over.

Velvet Panic and I discussed my favorite childhood books, how I got into this wonderful world of M/M fic and why I do this!

Check out my interview with Gale Stanley from Wake Up Your Wild Side to read the seriously hilarious story behind finding the title for Hush.

Speaking of titling Hush, The Novel Approach and I talked in depth about the importance of the right title and why it works so well with this story and these characters.

Bayou Book Junkie not only gave me a wonderful review (thank you!) but hosted a Q&A in which I got to talk about the biggest challenges I faced writing a book (balancing my poetic tendencies with prose without pulling back too much is just one aspect) and my all time favorite book (I cheated, there are two!).

Prism Book Alliance challenged the crap out of me by having me list my 10 favorite literary couples! I had to think for days, and then though of more once I turned it in (of course). I did have to think outside the box and redefine couple (lifelong friendship, the moment that changed a life and could have been, etc). Watch out for my obsession with YA. I really do love these couples and highly recommend reading all of these books.

Cate Ashwood hosted me for a Q&A about my writing process, which was really nice to talk about. Revealing that I’m a pantser rather than a plotter wasn’t exactly a plot twist, but I got to give examples of what happens when you pants (the appearance of Peyton, Cam’s twin, which came to me when I was already a third of the way through the book. She was a huge surprise but she’s incredibly important to his story). Also, Pintrest. I love Pintrest. Here’s mine if you want to see board inspirations for the story and also my boys!

BFD Book Blog hosted me for a great Q&A that included my tea recommendations, talk about my crochet fail, and five book recommendations for my readers, which I’m sharing because y’all, these are great books!

Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. A book with an intersex protagonist, which I never see, and also a wonderful interweaving of the history of Detroit, which is close to my heart. Beautifully, stunningly written.

Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan. I love Young and New Adult books. This book is hilarious and irreverent and spot on. You root for Paul and Noah, you head palm over Paul’s fails, you fall in love with the secondary characters (especially Tony). My favorite of Levithan’s books, although they are all treasures.

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. There is no universe in any dimension of existence in which I won’t insist you read this series (yes I cheated a little. Outlander is the first book. It’s a part of a series). I can’t even sum it up – it’s epic. History, a touch of sci-fi,  romance, war, hot sex, men in kilts…

The Chosen by Chaim Potok. Again with the YA! This book has long been one of my favorites. It’s a coming age of story that’s poignant and painful; both in historical context (during and just after World War II) but also in what Danny and Revuen go through as they grow into men. The bedrock of the story – the friendship they develop and their relationship and friendship throughout – is so masterfully done, I still cry when I read it.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelly. I could go on for years about all the ways in which this book is so much more than people think: the complex themes of creation, religion, responsibility and philosophy. But I won’t. I’ll just kindly urge everyone to read it, ponder it, and read it again. And again.

I enjoyed talking about my inspiration for this book, my amazing cover art, and what’s coming with my next book with Love Bytes Reviews. The highlight for me was talking about my favorite celebration meal: Arepaswhich is a cornmeal-based flatbread. You eat them hot and open them up to make pockets and stuff them with deli meat and cheese (we love to use queso blanco). We only ever have them when my cousins – who are what’s left of my father’s side of the family and the only connection we have with his Venezuelan roots – are in town. My one cousin is a chef and last time we had them he made some amazing sauce with steak and mushrooms and seventy other things that I’d never think to put on them but they were orgasmically good. I loved giving Cam some of my Venezuelan roots, and getting to feed him arepas as well.  That was totally born of my longing for good family food.

Molly Lolly not only gave me a wonderful review (and I appreciate that she got a kick out of  Nate and Cam soxiling each other) but also got a playlist of 10 songs for Hush (if you like them and want to hear the whole playlist, it’s public on my Spotify!). Here are my ten picks:

Dark Horse by Katy Perry
Wild Ones– Sia, Flo Rida
Statues of Ourselves, Semi Precious Weapons
ET – Katy Perry and Kanye West
Map of the Problematique – Muse
Titanium – Sia, David Guetta
Hysteria – Muse
The Perfect Drug– Nine Inch Nails
Sweater Weather – The Neighborhood
Anything Could Happen – Ellie Goulding.

Speaking of soxiling! If you aren’t familiar, I encourage you to read Hush to find out what exactly it is! I had SO MUCH FUN with it, and with finding pictures of the socks for the boys to send each other. In the next month or so I’d love to host a contest: Sock Saturdays. The winner will get a free copy of my book sent right too them. Stay tuned for more on that!

Big thanks to every blog that hosted me, all the blogs that interviewed and reviewed!

~*~

Hush is currently available for order at Interlude Press, Amazon and other awesome retailers 😀

Reader questions!

I am so excited that my book is out in your hands now, and that you all have questions! I have a new shiny Ask Me Things! button up on the link bar at the top of the page, so if you have any questions, ask away!!

For now, I have a question from a reader (that’s a thrilling phrase!)

Hi Jude – I read and loved your book! I couldn’t put it down. I did have a couple of questions though. I sort of felt like there could be a sequel – do you have any plans for more with Wren and Cam? And also, I sort of felt like Peyton and Cam might have been ‘gifted’ themselves, and maybe Peyton knew but Cam had no idea, which is why she travels so much. Am I reading too much into it? Again, the book is amazing! -Slayerkitty

First of all, thank you so much, I am so glad you liked it!

This book definitely comes to a close at a natural ending point in one arc of Wren and Cam’s lives and relationships. It’s a coming of age story, but the funny thing about coming of age is that, in my experience, it is a thing that slowly happens in waves. And it’s happening to all of the characters in this book. There’s so much of their stories left to tell! I would love to revisit that in the future, and should the time and opportunity present themselves, I’ll definitely be addressing Cam and Peyton’s stories further. For now, I’ll leave you with a hint: the author Q&A at the end of Hush has one, and an invitation to let your imagination take you anywhere you’d like….

 

Virtual Book Tour

With the release of Hush tomorrow, I’ll also be embarking on a two week book tour talking about my book, my writing process, what an awesome weirdo I am…

I’ll be posting links as we go on my twitter account, so come on over! Thanks to Will from Pride Promotions for organizing and making this happen!

booktour

Last week on Hush…

I present this like it’s a tv show recap… alas, not. It is a round up of the sneak peek tweets you might have missed! In 140 characters or less, in no particular order:

~*~

He blushes and she laughs like butterflies storming the room, beautiful and startling.

~*~

Nebraska unfolds as the highway ribbons its way closer to a house filled with an energy Cam once unconsciously freed himself from.

~*~

Running gives him what nothing else in his life has offered: an indescribable feeling he chases as fast and as far as his legs will take him.

~*~

The look is fleeting; just a moment and it is gone, as the focus of the room shifts toward the front. It’s nothing.

Only it’s not.

~*~

His body feels like this beautiful live thing, this glowing presence, perfectly held with Cam all around him…

~*~

He never suspected Cam could be like this, so easy in the aftermath, so open and sensual. Wren can’t remember a time he felt like that.

~*~

“I’m going to make you want things you never thought you would.”

~*~

Hopefully this book will bring you on the journey Wren and Cam go on! I can’t wait to share it with you all starting TOMORROW!!!

Hush is currently available for pre-order at Interlude Press and will be released May 19th. For a chance to win a free copy, head over here!