Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fearless VBT

At fifteen, Justin is already a cynic. He’s experienced too many betrayals, too many disappointments. He doesn’t want to be involved in anything. He doesn’t want to be popular. He doesn’t even want friends anymore, since they only ever let you down. He just wants to get through high school and the best way he can come up with to accomplish that goal is to simply be invisible.

His self-imposed exile from high school life is threatened when Liam, the scary stoner, reaches out to him. What starts out as a strange and unsettling encounter with the unnerving,  pot-smoking teenager evolves into the sort of friendship that changes the course of a person’s life.

But as Liam drags the reluctant Justin out of his shell, Liam’s own secret is revealed.

Fearless is the story of the myriad shades of love, how to find one’s courage and the transformative power of friendship.

“Man, I can’t believe we’re stuck at home instead of at the Homecoming Dance.”

“Trust me, this is better,” I told him. “At least for me. My dance moves are outlawed in twelve states.”

Liam cracked a smile. “I got to see that.”

I frowned at him. “No.”

Liam’s eyes lit up with mischief. “Uh uh, you can’t keep claiming to be bad at everything without proof. You have to show me.”

“I really don’t.”

He went over to my laptop and called up the music player. “Hmm, let’s see, what do we have for playlists? ‘Life sux?’ ‘Love sux?’ I’m sensing a theme here.”

“At least I’m consistent.”

“True. Hey, ‘OMG the 80’s’ I think we have a winner.”

“I’m not dancing,” I told him.

I thought my tone was pretty firm. That didn’t prevent him from yanking me to my feet, though, with a strength I didn’t think he had. As the familiar beat of one of my favorite classics warbled out of my laptop’s crappy speakers, I folded my arms and backed away from the crazy guy with the infectious smile.

“Come on, feel the beat,” Liam coaxed.

I just couldn’t hang onto my glower, not with him gyrating and flailing like a fish out of water. It didn’t seem possible, but somehow he was actually as bad or worse than me.

“Oh girls just want to have fun,” he sang—badly—and danced (if one could call it that) over to me.

“You really don’t get the whole ‘no’ concept, do you?”

Chris, thanks so much for stopping by. So, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?
Well, I’m just your basic geek. I love to read, I love to play games on the computer. I have a partner, Jerry, whom I love very much and who supports me in this wild ride of being an indie author. My house is full of cats, all of whom claim exclusive rights to me. I’ve been writing in one way or another for 25 years. There’s always some idea gnawing on my brain. I work for, which is a gay entertainment website.

How did you get started writing?
Most authors I know started writing because a book inspired them and they wanted to learn to craft words so that they too could move people. I, on the other hand, started writing because “they were doing it wrong.” I was fifteen and full of myself, so judge me kindly. I kept reading these tired tropes and dumb characters and I just said, “I can do better.” I immediately proved myself wrong with my initial efforts—though of course I thought my first book was inspired genius for an embarrassing length of time.

What was the inspiration for your book?
There were several inspirations for Fearless. Initially, it was a letter sent to the advice columnist for the site I work for, It was from a gay teen who was all twisted up trying to decide if he should ask this other gay teen out on a date. And I remembered this piece of advice that I once heard that all people would do well to learn as early as possible—“The only thing worse than fear is regret.”

And I started thinking of a teenager who was crippled by fear and doubt and who could be rescued by someone with indomitable will and courage. That character, Liam, was strongly inspired by my late wife, who was a force of nature. In many ways, she rescued me just like Liam rescued Justin.

What’s the one genre you haven’t written in yet that you’d like to?
Well, the funny thing is, my passion always used to be Fantasy. I haven’t actually written anything in that genre now in years, but it’s still my first love. I have this world I am building, piece by piece, with lands and histories and so on. But I have too many other things to do, so that’s way down the list.

Are there any genres you won’t read or write in? Why?
Never say never, right? If an idea strikes me as something meaningful, then it will at least be up for consideration. That said, it’s doubtful I’ll ever write a mystery novel. I just don’t have the right brain settings for that.

So, what are you working on right now? Got any releases planned, or still writing?
As it happens, yes. I am about to embark on a massive, multi-novel series called Hybrids. The first book, Arrival is due out before the end of the year. It’s the story of aliens coming to Earth for nefarious reasons. The MC, Joaquin, befriends one of these aliens, whose name is Thrace. And their friendship leads them both into danger and uncertainty. It’s a big story and I have high hopes for it.

Alright, now for some totally random, fun questions. Favorite color?     Purple.

Favorite movie?
Argh, I hate this question. It depends on my mood and what I’ve watched most recently, but I’ll go with V for Vendetta. Full of pathos and action and tragedy, and it came out at such a perfect time, that movie will always top my list of faves.

Book that inspires you as an author?
Two authors had a profound effect on my writing. Guy Gavriel Kay and his Fionavar Tapestry. That showed me how poetry and prose could intertwine. Fiona Patton’s Branion series impacted me just as heavily. That taught me how the human element could be brought to the fore even in a story of epic danger and intrigue.

Alright, you have one superpower. What is it?
I really like the idea of this power where you touch an object and you can see all of its history. I just think that would be fascinating.

You can have dinner with any 3 people, dead, alive, fictitious, etc. Who are they?
Oscar Wilde, who was one of the greatest minds ever. Mae West, who I have heard was just a spectacular person to know. And John Cleese. I think that would be the most fabulous dinner party ever.

Last question: Which of your characters are you most like and how/why?
Well, I put a little of me into all my characters. However, Justin from Fearless was definitely the closest to me, which was entirely accidental. I was extremely introverted in high school, and full of bitterness and teenage angst. I found it easy to pull on a lot of my life to build Justin’s world. Even the school he went to was based on my high school.

That’s all from me, thanks so much for taking the time to stop by!

My Review:
Coming soon!

Chris will be awarding a $100 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. So the more you comment, the better your chances of winning!

10/14 Deal Sharing Aunt-PROMO
10/25 SECOND STOP Teena in Toronto-REVIEW

Author Information:
I’ve been writing since I was fifteen, not that those stories will ever be allowed out of the dark hole I buried them in. I focused primarily on the Fantasy genre for the first two decades, occasionally diverting into modern fiction. In 2010, I embarked in a self-publishing career, focusing on the young adult novel genre. When I’m not writing, I am contributing to, a gay entertainment website.

You can follow me on Facebook and you can keep up to date with my works via


  1. Thank you so much for inviting me to stop by.

  2. Great interview, I enjoyed reading it.


    1. Glad you liked it Rita. I really hope folks will give Fearless a chance.

  3. I really enjoyed reading your comments. it is always fascinating to know more about the author.

    1. And I love hearing from my readers! I'm enjoying this chance to connect with you all.

  4. Your book sounds great, and great post! And about the fantasy novel - DO IT! DO IT! :)

    falcondraco at Hotmail dot com

    1. One massive series at a time! But thanks for the encouragement

  5. Thanks for the great interview. I love how your own youth inspired it to some degree

    fencingromein at

  6. Thanks for sharing the great interview and the giveaway. Sounds like a great book. evamillien at gmail dot com

    1. I'm glad you like the sound of Fearless, Eva. I hope you give it a try.

  7. I'd go to that dinner party, for sure!


    1. Wouldn't it be fabulous? I love brilliant, funny people.

  8. Thanks for the excerpt and the interview!
    Sounds like a great read!!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

    1. Thank you, Natasha. I am very proud of Fearless and I hope you choose to spend some time with Justin and Liam.

  9. I enjoyed the interview thank you!!


  10. I don't know if it's your geekiness or just being totally awesome, but your interviews have been great! I totally get a kick out of each of them! Glad I found this tour :D

    andralynn7 AT gmail DOt com

  11. Another great interview !! Truthfully, I usually skip reading them because they are such a bore, but you are funny and smart. I'm loving it !!

    stamper_sierra [at] yahoo [dot] com