Almost All My Books Are Free rn

All M/M, all erotic, all free. Read ’em & weep…with joy.

Short Stories:

Aniki’s Garden (yakuza and art historian, 1966 Tokyo)

Thirsting for More (vampires, a contemporary hipster neighborhood)

Backwoods Beast (hot redneck werewolves, modern rural Oregon)

Novel Trilogy:

The Hidden Talents Trilogy (hot troubled sex-hungry psychics — Instafreebie links in Goodreads blog post)

 

Aniki’s Garden – M/M Yakuza Tentacle Mood-Porn

Sometimes I look back at what I’ve written like “ah geez what the heck.” Anyway here’s a story I dedicate to retro Japanese porn.

This was written for the Goodreads M/M Romance Group’s Love Is An Open Road Anthology in 2015. It is potentially problematic. Please do not take it as an endorsement of stereotypes. It is made of my love for 1960s-1990s Japanese cinema and erotica. So just eat up this sexy gangster cousin love and leave with really weird feelings about octopuses.

I give you Aniki’s Garden.

Continue reading “Aniki’s Garden – M/M Yakuza Tentacle Mood-Porn”

The New Hidden Talents Is Here!

Can’t believe it: REBEL HELL, the first book in the new Hidden Talents Trilogy, is out now!

claire-cray-rebel-hell
Get it now:

Amazon US / Amazon UK / Amazon CA / B&N / Kobo / Smashwords

I still can’t believe I wrote a story like this. Psychics, evil conspiracies, action?! So unlike me. But this turned out to be the most character-driven thing I’ve ever written, with an ensemble cast of smart, complicated dudes whose friendships and rivalries add up to a hot, delicious mess.

Jin and Ken, the two central characters in Hidden Talents, were a blast to write. Jin starts out as a carefree baddie who loves to make trouble. But once he meets Ken, a strange teen with a dark past and a surly attitude, Jin finds himself changing in ways he never imagined.

This story has some dark themes in it. Central to the tale is the concept of Talent. Talent means superhuman power, and those who have it — Talents, as they refer to themselves — develop extraordinary physical, intellectual, and psychic abilities. Nobody knows where Talent comes from, but it often appears after a traumatic experience. Suffice it to say, many of the most powerful Talents in the books have been through some shit. So be prepared for references to past abuse, torture, rape, murder, and psychic mutilation.

Also be prepared for loads of sarcastic humor, sex scenes ranging from mean and nasty to slow and tender, and an international roster of fine-ass men who get in all kinds of trouble.

Ken, an enigmatic young Talent who’s just entered the real world after a lifetime of isolation and torture.

Jin, a devious Russian telepath who loves nothing more than to stir up trouble.

Lip, an affable Australian hunk who uses his razor-sharp intellect to watch out for his friends.

Mark, a bisexual Cuban-American whose dark charisma almost makes up for what a moody jerk he can be.

Sky, a beautiful, drug-addicted empath fresh out of the Osaka underworld.

Kel, a stoic intelligence expert from Senegal with little patience for dramatics.

David and Luke, lovely Irish twins with major issues, and their older brother Dylan, who just wants them to stay alive.

Aki, a self-exiled yakuza heir determined to overcome a devastating tragedy.

Jackson, a coldly charismatic precognitive with a secret plan in which all of the Talents have roles to play — whether they want to or not.

(Which one would u?)

The second book in the series is already out, so get readin’, mates. The third will be available for pre-order by the end of the week, so stay tuned!

Updates: Beta Readers, “Aniki’s Garden,” Hidden Talents 9, & Theo

It’s been awhile!

Call for Beta Readers

Huge thanks to those who have responded to my call for betas! It’s been such a weight off my mind to make contact with all of these fantastic readers and know that I’ll have them on the line for projects this year! I’ve already had a great time bouncing ideas around via email, and I can’t wait to really start sending complete drafts out for feedback.

Want to beta for me? Come at me! Details here, or you can just email me.

“Aniki’s Garden”

As I mentioned a while back, I am participating the amazing Goodreads M/M Romance Group’s Love is an Open Road anthology. I’ll be submitting a mega-pervy short story called “Aniki’s Garden.”

I don’t know how much I’m allowed to give away at this point, beyond the fact that I need to fucking get the first draft out to those beta readers ASAP. But the title and prompt tell you a lot. Yakuza. Garden. Young hottie. Bondage. Octopus. ♥︎

Hidden Talents 9

Hidden Talents has been delayed again. (*ducks tomatoes*) (*ducks more tomatoes*) (*makes tomato sandwich*) (*eats in shame*)

I KNOW, GUYS. How have any of you put up with me so long? It’s kind of like I’m Mark and you’re Lip. No, let’s not go that route. Anyway, yes, I did want to have it out in March. But because I’m a loser who can only remember one obligation at a time, I sort of forgot to consider that I’ve also got a fucking ghostwriting contract with a very short May 1 deadline. (Clean forgot! Ha, ha! Silly me! Excuse me while I go breathe into a paper bag.)

So, HT gets pushed back again. I’m sorry! It’s free, it’s low-demand, it’s been drawn out beyond redemption — so it gets de-prioritized. Aaaand this is why I should not be writing serials. I just can’t seem to balance the demands of that game with my other career/life obligations. I sure wish I had anticipated this before I started self-publishing. In my dreams, I’ll have enough standalone works out by 2016 that my sloppy serial days will be forgotten by all but you, my ORs (original readers — I didn’t just make that up, did I?).

How can I make amends? Well, I’ve got a mountain of deleted scenes up in here. Some pretty good ones, in fact. And preview chapters from HT9 to post.

Theo

At the risk of jinxing myself, I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT THEO. I don’t know if I’ve ever felt more confident and on-track about a book. The story is so much fun I can’t even deal with it. It’s got action in it, guys! Actual action! It even looks as if I, Claire Cray, may have managed to create a PLOT made out of more than long walks, feelings and unsatisfied longing. I know! It’s very exciting. Knock wood.

What are YOU all up to, I wonder? Wish me lots of luck and motivation!

Hidden Talents: Video of Ken’s night drives in California

In Hidden Talents, Ken spends a lot of time out riding his motorcycle. After his motorcycle accident in Paris, when Jin mistook him for a KGA agent and caused him to crash, then shot him, Lip told Ken he was grounded from bikes. He didn’t listen. At the end of Hidden Talents 8, Ken swipes Lip’s bike (again) and takes off on a directionless drive, determined to be left alone.

When Ken first appears in the last Hidden Talents books, he’s still out driving. I have an idea of the geography around Los Angeles from movies, but I was curious about where Ken might go to take a long, solitary night drive to get away from everything. I guessed he’d probably drive up into the Santa Monica mountains. So I did a quick search to see what the road geography of the mountains was like near Los Angeles, and I found this cool video of exactly the kind of drive I was picturing!

The music isn’t my taste and it’s not at night, but it’s really great for imagining what Ken would be seeing and what it would feel like to take those curves, just zoning out on the winding road while you brood over something. Also makes sense that even Kel wishes he wouldn’t drive like such a maniac.

Beta readers needed for M/M romance novels & short stories!

Betas, I need you!

I’m putting the call out all across the land: I am looking for beta readers for a number of upcoming works.

What you’d be reading:

I write M/M romance including historical, paranormal, and contemporary. My stuff can be a little offbeat, but it’s usually not too out-there. If my books were TV shows, I’d try to hit an eerie, dramatic note somewhere between Twin Peaks and True Blood, but hotter.

More details under the cut!

Continue reading “Beta readers needed for M/M romance novels & short stories!”

Writer’s Block, damn, damn, damn.

I’ve been on an outlining frenzy, but today I have horrible writer’s block.

I try not to let writer’s block stop me. I’m an advocate of the JUST WRITE SOMETHING method. But that can be exhausting. It’s so hard to read back over my own sentences and see that they don’t sound the way I meant them — don’t sound like I even wrote them. It’s horrible.

There’s a feeling you get in your chest when you know you’ve written something really good. I know when I get it right. It’s not a feeling I get about an entire book, but I know when a sentence or a scene has that special quality.

I also know when I’ve just written something that has no soul. It is the worst feeling.

The heady combination of grief and sex was what had brought Dylan and Mark together in the first place, back when it was just starting to sink in that Jen’s madness was going to be a lasting problem, back when Mark had first lost her. Dylan had been there, the perfect friend in every way, right down to his immediate understanding that Mark would rather be fucked than hugged any day of the week.

I hate this. I’m not saying it’s the worst thing ever, but I just hate it. And okay, maybe it doesn’t have NO SOUL but whatever it has is buried in shit. That’s why I hate it.

I am just not having a very good writing night. And Hidden Talents is maybe not always the best thing to write/edit when I’m not having a good writing night.

How do you

Writing Journal: How Long Must a Chapter Be?

Not too long ago I had a full-time gig as a writer’s assistant. She was a successful memoirist and essayist, but between her own book deals, she made a living off of a wide range of freelance editorial projects. Ghostwriting, book packaging, cookbooks, developmental editing, and so on. Because she was quite a connected lady with a LOT of work to delegate (and because I was competent, obvs), I got to take charge of developing/writing/editing a variety of books ranging from investment guides, celebrity memoirs, political books, and a bunch of fiction.

I’ve always been a writer, but the professional writing/publishing world is still new to me. I’ve only been in it since I moved to New York three years ago. Before that, I was more experienced with online publishing — blogging, essays, news, and such — and literary fiction. Moreover, it’s only been in the last three years that I’ve become so focused on genre fiction and novels. So there has been a lot for me to learn in the last couple of years, and luckily I’ve had a great number of opportunities to dive right in.

Continue reading “Writing Journal: How Long Must a Chapter Be?”

Happy Valentine’s Day! Have a box of romantic YouTubes (NSFW maybe?)

What’s wrong with Valentine’s Day? It’s an excuse for chocolate and writing cute notes to people! That’s how I used to celebrate. I’d make some huge batch of chocolate treats — chocolate covered strawberries, chocolate turtles, bourbon balls, peanut butter cups, to name a few — and then spend a day and a night packaging them all cute and attaching little cards with notes for all my friends. I’m really into holidays, man, what can I say?

Now I’m an adult and have a little less free time. My boyfriend’s Japanese, though, so I can’t get out of the chocolate-making. (In Japan, February 14 is a day when girls give guys chocolates. March 14, White Day, is when guys return the favor.) All he ever wants me to make is cheesecake, though, so I tried a chocolate marble cheesecake for the first time. Results, meh. I kind of like my cheesecake plain. But I’m sitting here glancing at it every few minutes like a hungry bear.

Anyway, I’m still down with Valentine’s Day! I’m all alone in my apartment now with the cheesecake, a box of chocolates (HEART-SHAPED! I begged! haha), a half a bottle of red wine, and a bunch of story notes to go over. What could I have to complain about?

I’d like to sprinkle just a little more sugar on top of this sweet confection of a day with a few of my favorite romantic / erotic YouTube clips. Enjoy, honeypies.

1. The Lover (L’Amant)
This is one of my favorite films, and books, of all times. So beautiful, so romantic, so sad, so sexy.

2. 2046
This is another of my favorite films, by my absolute favorite director, Wong Kar-Wai. In this film, Kimura Takuya (yes! of SMAP) plays a couple of roles, one of which is of a young Japanese businessman in love with a young Hong Kong woman while there on business. It’s just a subplot in the movie — her dad forbids her from seeing him, he has some angsty moments and charming moments, full KimuTaku power. In this scene she reads a love letter from him. Watch the movie — the whole thing is on YouTube with subs right now, for some reason!

3. Y Tu Mama Tambien
SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t seen the movie, don’t ruin it for yourself by watching this now! Go watch the whole thing! Two young Mexican guy BFFs go on a road trip with an amazing sexy older lady and they all end up in a threesome and

4. Gael Garcia Bernal (again) in La Mala Educacion
FYI, this is not a sweet and romantic movie. It is amazing, however. And Gael is ridiculously sexy from start to finish, whether playing a beautiful made-up drag queen or a devious young hustler.

5. Shelter (2007)
Um, no comment necessary. Love this first kiss.

GIVE ME MORE!

William’s only 99 cents today!

Hey guys, sorry I’ve been all promo-promo-promo lately! I have many other things to share once my deadlines are behind me, I promise!

But for now, yo: My Kindle Countdown Deal starts today! So right now you can get William for just 99 cents. 99 damn cents, guys!

Grab it fast, my lovelies!

MERRICK-2

But who had time for thoughts? I was absorbing the ridges of his abdomen with my hands, running my palms over the solid planes of his chest. And then, as he was presently finishing the job of unbuttoning my trousers, I reached for the front of his. But he caught my hands and began to walk me backward toward the bed.

“Blast it, you don’t mean to stop me, do you?” I demanded breathlessly, stopping when my thighs ran into the mattress.

“I would let nothing stop you.” Merrick let go of my hands and I called his bluff, finishing the breeches just in time before he pressed me down to sit and knelt to remove my boots.

Damned, cursed clothes. Why could we not dress as those Ancient Greeks had dressed? Our togas would have long since fallen aside and we would be entwined already. I set my mind to ridding us of shoes and stockings until we could fell into the bed and let our pants slide away. Bracing himself above me on one hand, he ran the other down the bare length of my body and claimed my lips with a searing kiss…

(Get it and keep reading!)