'I love you' is just the beginning of the story.

“Blue Notes” to be published in December 2011/January 2012

Wow!  Birthday week.  I was so completely ready for a terrible week, and dreading officially facing another year to add to my growing collection…  But it was a fabulous week, in so many ways!

It started out with my first look at the cover of my upcoming novella, “The Dream of a Thousand Nights,” which completely floored me.  So gorgeous, and a perfect representation of the characters, Neriah (the Prince) and Tamir (the Jinn).  Anne Cain’s artwork is so beautifully evocative of the sand fic vibe of the piece, and I couldn’t have imagined a sexier Neriah.  Are there truly men THAT beautiful out there in the “real” world?

And then, two days later, I got word from Dreamspinner Press that they will be publishing my first, full-length novel, “Blue Notes!”  At this point, I was bouncing off the walls (like a big kid – so much for acting my age!).  Tentative release date is December 2011/January 2012.  To say that I’m thrilled is an understatement!  So, for those of you who may not have seen the “blurb” for this new story, here goes:

Blame it on jet-lag. Jason Greene thought he had everything: a dream job as a partner in a large Philadelphia law firm, a beautiful fiance, and more money than he could ever hope to spend. But when he finds his future wife in bed with another man, he’s forced to rethink his life and his choices. On a moment’s notice, he runs away to Paris, hoping to make peace with his life. But Jason’s leave of absence becomes a true journey of the heart when he meets Jules, a struggling jazz violinist with his own pain to shoulder. And when Jason wakes up in the young Frenchman’s arms, will he take a chance and follow his heart?

The novel will be available both in ebook format, as well as paperback! I love ebooks (and my Kindle!), of course, but the thought that the story will be available as a paperback book is particularly exciting to me.

Add to all this, my wayward husband has returned from 4 weeks of travels in the Third World, a wonderful Peruvian dinner out last night, and I am a happy camper.

So here’s to another year in the life!

Peace,

Shira

On August 6, 2011 in Uncategorized

Got my beautiful cover!

Cover: “The Dream of a Thousand Nights”

Just got the cover from Dreamspinner Press for my upcoming release, “The Dream of a Thousand Nights.”  Anne Cain did a fabulous job evoking the Arabian Nights/fairy tale vibe of the story!  I just love all the details and the warm, sunny (desert, anyone?) feeling it brings to mind.  Absolutely perfect!

Release date for the long novella (approximately 50K words) is September 26, 2011!

Just a reminder of the general plot:  In ancient times, the immortal Jinn lived only to satisfy the desires of humans, granting wishes and fulfilling their sexual needs.

Tamir, a Jinn, had long loved Prince Neriah from afar. Tamir had once saved the prince’s life when he and Neriah were just boys, but was stripped of his powers by the other Jinn as punishment for falling in love with a human. Ten years later, Neriah has no memory of Tamir and lives as an outlaw, on the run from the King’s assassins. Still, Neriah dreams each night of a lover whose face he cannot see and whose name he does not know, but who fills his empty heart with peace and happiness.

Freed at last from his incarceration, Tamir seeks to help Neriah re-take the Kingdom of Tazier from Neriah’s ruthless father, but finds that the once-gentle prince’s heart now beats only for revenge. How can Tamir help Neriah without his magic? And how can a powerless Jinn hope to save the embittered prince’s heart?

More to come as the release date draws closer!  But for now, I’m just going to sit back and drool over my gorgeous prince and his jinn!

Peace!

-Shira

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4641776.Shira_Anthony

www.shiraanthony.com

On August 1, 2011 in Uncategorized

Home for the holiday – thoughts about change

I flew to my childhood home in the Midwest over the holidays to spend the long weekend with a close friend from college.  We’ve kept in touch over the years, but it’s been nearly ten since I last visited.  He and I both are, of course, now ten years older, as are the rest of the family and friends I have seen on this trip.  So perhaps it’s this realization that’s put me in a reflective mood and that has me thinking about change.

My gracious host for the weekend moonlights as the music director of Franklin Circle Christian Church, located in an historical area of downtown Cleveland.  Jim never passes up an opportunity to get me singing again (he was, after all, my accompanist and fellow opera singer in my conservatory years).  So on a humid Sunday morning, I found myself standing at the lectern of the lovely old church, singing Gounod’s “O Divine Redeemer” to the sounds of a gorgeous and newly-rebuilt pipe organ.  Looking out at the congregation, I saw faces I recognized from years before, when I used to sing there regularly.  Older, but still full of life.  And amongst those aging faces, new faces. The faces of openness and acceptance.

The church, it seems, saw its numbers flagging over the years.  And where other churches might have given up and closed their doors, this church reached out to the growing gay, African American and Latino communities of the surrounding area.  To be clear, the church has always been “open” in the sense that it never turned people away because of sexual preference or ethnic background.  But under its current leadership, it has gone a step further and reached out to those communities.  The end result is a vibrant, loving community of people who worship together and work to make the community a better place for all those who live there.

So as I sit here on July 4th in my old home town, I am struck by how change can be a renewing and positive force in our lives.  Change may happen in small ways (as in this relatively small church) or in larger ways (as in New York’s new gay marriage law), but it is not necessarily a thing to be feared.

Happy Fourth of July to all! -Shira

On July 4, 2011 in Uncategorized

Finished my first draft of “Blue Notes”

The first draft of my full-length novel, “Blue Notes,” is now complete.  It’s funny how it always seems to be a mixed blessing, completing a story.  Especially so, when you fall in love with your own characters.  I’m both elated and sad to be letting go of the story.  Not that the creative process ends with a first draft, of course, but from here on out, it’s more about tweaking the language and polishing than stepping into the characters’ shoes and being part of the plot.

It always amazes me,  how much the germ of an idea develops when you begin to write.  The vague notion that I wanted to write about Paris and my own experiences growing up in Grenoble morphed into a love story between two very different men, with different issues to face.  It was also a cathartic experience , writing about Jason facing his demons and performing in spite of his fears.  I could picture myself on that very same stage at the Conservatoire de Grenoble when I was a teenager, playing violin and hoping I wouldn’t fall flat on my face!  How many times I faced those very same demons…  That particular chapter was the hardest of them all to write – Jason on stage, Jules in the audience, quietly supporting him.

In the end, I hope I’ve struck a chord with my readers – that you will taste a bit of what it’s like to put yourself out there, to face the praise or criticism, and to fear rejection.  I’m fortunate to have found someone to support me the way Jules does Jason.  We should all be so lucky.  We all deserve it!

Peace! -Shira

 

On June 2, 2011 in Uncategorized

“The Dream of a Thousand Nights” to be published by Dreamspinner Press

I’m so thrilled to announce that Dreamspinner Press, my favorite male/male slash publisher, will be publishing “The Dream of a Thousand Nights.”  No set publication date yet, but I will keep you all posted!  I’m honored and very flattered to become part of the Dreamspinner team.

Special thanks to my wonderful friend and fellow author, Thea Nishimori, for all of her beta work on “Dream” and for encouraging me to submit it for publication.

On another note, “Blue Notes” is now nearly complete.  If you haven’t already read the work-in-progress, please give it a read:  http://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/1751285-Blue-Notes-A-Modern-Gay-Romance  I’ll be reworking it for publication, and as always, would love your feedback (positive or negative).  -Shira

On May 19, 2011 in Uncategorized

“Blue Notes”

My trip to Paris seems to have inspired my muse to take off in another direction – this time, a modern romance set (where else) in Paris.  This work in progress can be read here:  http://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/1751285-Blue-Notes-A-Modern-Gay-Romance  As always, I’m happy to hear your comments or suggestions.

A brief synopsis:

Blame it on jet-lag.

Jason Greene thought he had everything: a dream job as a partner in a large Philadelphia law firm, a beautiful fiance, and more money than he could ever hope to spend.  But when he finds his future wife in bed with another man, he’s forced to rethink his life and his choices.  On a moment’s notice, he runs away to Paris, hoping to make peace with his life.  But Jason’s leave of absence becomes a true journey of the heart when he meets Jules, a struggling jazz violinist with his own pain to shoulder.  And when Jason wakes up in the young Frenchman’s arms, will he take a chance and follow his heart?  Slow burn erotica until Chapter 3.

I hope you’ll join me as I get to to know Jason and Jules, and as their relationship develops.

Until next time! -Shira

On March 5, 2011 in Uncategorized

“The Dream of a Thousand Nights” Debuts on Amazon Kindle!

I never thought I’d find myself editing a book while sitting in a Paris cafe drinking a “chocolat chaud!”  But something about the metrosexual, vibrant nature of Paris in winter called to the writer in me (or perhaps it was the lack of ready access to the internet!).  Even as I worked on this story set in the Middle East, with sand and sun, my mind was already straying to an as yet unwritten story set in Europe in modern times…

“Dream of a Thousand Nights” started as a one-shot story about a lonely prince and a Jinn, who saved the prince from himself when the prince was disconsolate over the death of his young and beautiful wife.  The Jinn’s revelation, that he himself had held back the young prince’s hand when the prince had tried to kill himself with his dagger, was the ultimate revelation.  The Jinn had always been the prince’s side; the prince had never been truly alone.

Of course, if you’ve read “Dream,” you’ll see the story has changed somewhat from this first kernel of an idea.  There is no princess, but a young man, whom the prince has forgotten, but whose presence haunts his dreams.  The prince of “Dreams,” Neriah, is hardly suicidal, but his heart has grown cold with time and the memory of his mother’s murder and self-sacrifice.  Tamir, the kind Jinn who has sacrificed so much for the love of his prince, returns to find an embittered prince and struggles to reawaken the prince’s cold heart.

So there you have it — the genesis of Neriah and Tamir, and of “Dream of a Thousand Nights.”  I hope you will grow to love these two men as I did while writing them!

Much love,

Shira

On February 7, 2011 in Uncategorized
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