Posts Tagged With: Kate McMurray

Honorary Blogger Kate McMurray: Can’t Quit You, Baseball + Giveaway!

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Can’t Quit You, Baseball

by Kate McMurray

I really thought I was done writing about baseball after I finished Out in the Field. I’d said what I had to say, I’d written the book of my heart, and I was ready to move on and write about other things.

But this world just kept pulling me back.

A few years ago, Shae Connor and I decided that we should put together an anthology of baseball stories. I readily agreed, though I was worried I wouldn’t be able to come up with a story. Then my brother suggested I write a dead-ball era historical. Then, while watching the Ken Burns Baseball documentary for the third or fourth time and thinking about how weird it is that a guy like Babe Ruth—whose athletic prowess was fueled largely by booze, women, and hot dogs—somehow became one of the greatest ball players of all time, when a story started to form in my mind. I set it in the Jazz Age, not the dead-ball era, but still, I had a new angle on baseball. That story became “One Man to Remember” in the Playing Ball anthology.

But then I really was done. Right?

I knew I wanted to write a series of connected books before I knew what it was going to be about. When someone suggested I write about baseball again, I pointed out how unlikely it was that there are enough gay major leaguers on any given team to build a series around—that the very premise seemed implausible to me—it was pointed out that I didn’t have to write about professional baseball players.

Fair point. Hence the Rainbow League was born.

I made it a LGBT league which handily solved the above plausibility issue, and once I got going planning out the series, I knew I’d been sucked back into the baseball world.

I intended for the series to be fun, for it to be a lot about guys who play baseball but mostly just hang out, befriend each other, and occasionally sleep together. I wound up dealing with some bigger issues—anxiety, loss, domestic violence—but I think that adds depth to the stories and characters. My hope is that, taken as a whole, there’s a lot in these stories that readers can relate to. The characters are regular guys who happen to play baseball together. They have lives outside of the sport. (Well, Mason from Thrown a Curve might argue he doesn’t, but he’s a former Yankee. Once a pro, always a pro, perhaps.)

So, I hope you enjoy these three books and my little foray back into baseball. I could tell you I’m off to write historicals or more classical musicians or what have you now, but let’s face it, I’ll be back to writing about baseball players soon enough. 

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About The Long Slide Home

The_Long_Slide_Home_Final_FLATNate and Carlos have been the best of friends since their childhood playing baseball together in the Bronx. For the past few years, Nate’s been in love with Carlos, though he’s never acted on it and Carlos has never given any indication that he returns Nate’s feelings. Nate has finally given up, determined to move on and find someone else, especially now that Carlos has shacked up with his boyfriend, Aiden.

Carlos doesn’t understand why Nate has suddenly gotten weird, acting cold and distant at team practice for the Rainbow League. But if that’s how things are going to be, Carlos is done trying to figure Nate out. But then Aiden reveals he has a violent side, and Carlos needs his best friend’s support. On top of that, he starts to realize his feelings for Nate might not be limited to friendship. But in the aftermath of his relationship with Aiden, and with Nate having problems of his own, the timing is all wrong to make a real relationship work. As emotions run high, both have a hard time figuring out what is real and what is just convenient.

Available at: Dreamspinner Press & Amazon

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About Kate McMurray

Kate McMurray is an award-winning author of gay romance and an unabashed romance fan. When she’s not writing, she works as a nonfiction editor, dabbles in various crafts, and is maybe a tiny bit obsessed with base­ball. She lives in Brooklyn, NY. Visit her website.

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As part of this blog tour, Kate is giving away all 3 Rainbow League books and a $25 gift card!! To enter, just click the link below!

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway unless otherwise stated but are still welcome anyway.

Good luck!

Categories: Book Promo, Giveaways, Honorary Blogger Post, LGBT | Tags: , , , , | 8 Comments

Giveaway Winners!

It’s time to pick some giveaway winners! Woohoo!

1

The winner of an eBook copy of The Devil’s Ride hosted K.A. Merikan is… Continue reading

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Honorary Blogger Kate McMurray: Disorderly Storytelling + Giveaway!

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Disorderly Storytelling

by Kate McMurray

There are lots of ways to tell a story.

I told the story of Michael and Simon in When the Planets Align in perhaps not the most straightforward way. The book opens on Simon taking a train to Penn Station because he’s moving back to New York after a long absence, but the story starts fourteen years before when Simon quietly comes out to his best friend Michael when both are juniors in high school. Or it really starts when they both meet as young boys, though neither can remember exactly how it was they came to be friends beyond that they just have been for as long as each can remember.

When the Planets Align is a story told out of order. I chose to take a nonlinear route for this book, gradually unveiling the pieces of the past that brought both men to this point in the present. The first scene I wrote of this book was of Simon impatiently waiting under the departures board in Penn Station for Michael, who is running late, and when they do finally see each other, it’s awkward. In this moment, their whole history informs how they act with each other. This scene is basically the focal point around which the whole book revolves, because what came before explains how they got to this strained moment, and what comes after describes how they get past it.

The funny thing about writing this book is that I think this is the best structure for it, but I second-guessed myself. After I had written a few scenes out of order, I reorganized the whole book chronologically. When I sent it to my beta readers, they all told me it wasn’t working. The pacing wasn’t right, the first-page hook wasn’t pulling them in—that was the criticism I was getting. All valid, by the way. (This is why I have beta readers. So they can tell me what’s wrong with my book and I can fix it before it goes to the publisher.) One of my betas went so far as to suggest I set the scenes nonlinearly, which is what I had always intended but chickened out of doing. It was like she knew that this was how the story was supposed to be told.

It’s a rough thing to take something you’ve already spent hours upon hours crafting and rip it apart to put it back together again. (Not the first time I’ve had to do it; I scrapped and rewrote Blind Items three times before I was happy with it.) I had to sit with an actual piece of paper and a pen to draw out the plot and which scenes went where and in what order. The final product was the story as I had originally envisioned it, and I went for the nontraditional narrative, rather than sticking with the less satisfying straightforward saga of Simon and Michael.

So that’s the long-winded way of telling you why the book is the way it is.

And still, I think it’s good to shake things up and try new things. It’s one of the fun parts of being a writer. I can take an old trope—one I’ve written before, even—and put a new spin on it to keep it interesting for myself, at least, and hopefully also for my readers. And I love these characters and this book, so I hope you do, too!

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About When the Planets Align

WhenthePlanetsAlignLGBest friends Michael Reeves and Simon Newell always lived within ten minutes of each other, but somehow they’re never in the same place at the same time.

Brash, outgoing Michael’s unwavering confidence that he and Simon are meant to be carries him through some hard times. When Simon moves to New York, Michael dutifully follows. Quiet, practical Simon loves Michael as a dear friend, but he’s not ready for anything romantic.

Several years and several failed relationships later, Simon realizes he’s been in love with Michael all along. Only now Michael has moved on. Though Simon offers everything Michael’s ever dreamed of, the timing is all wrong. Confusion, betrayal, and secrets from the past threaten their friendship until it might be time for them to go their separate ways. Or maybe the planets will finally align, and Michael and Simon will find themselves in the right place at the right time to take the next step.

Available at: Dreamspinner Press & Amazon

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About Kate McMurray

Kate McMurray is an award-winning romance author and fan. When she’s not writing, she works as a nonfiction editor, dabbles in various crafts, and is maybe a tiny bit obsessed with baseball. She is active in RWA and has served as president of Rainbow Romance Writers and on the board of RWANYC. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Find out more about Kate on her Website, Twitter or Facebook.

Blogger_Giveaway

Kate has graciously offered up an eBook copy of When the Planets Align to one lucky winner!! The giveaway starts now and ends December 24, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. To enter, just click the link below!

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway, except to verify your Rafflecopter entry.

Don’t forget to check out Heather C’s review of When the Planets Align to see what she thought of it!

Good luck!

Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, Honorary Blogger Post | Tags: , , , | 24 Comments

Book Review: When the Planets Align by Kate McMurray

Reviewed by Heather C

WhenthePlanetsAlignLGTitle: When the Planets Align
Author: Kate McMurray
Heroes: Michael Reeves/Simon Newell
Genre: MM Contemporary Romance
Length: 220 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 19, 2014
Available at: Dreamspinner Press & Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: Best friends Michael Reeves and Simon Newell always lived within ten minutes of each other, but somehow they’re never in the same place at the same time.

Brash, outgoing Michael’s unwavering confidence that he and Simon are meant to be carries him through some hard times. When Simon moves to New York, Michael dutifully follows. Quiet, practical Simon loves Michael as a dear friend, but he’s not ready for anything romantic.

Several years and several failed relationships later, Simon realizes he’s been in love with Michael all along. Only now Michael has moved on. Though Simon offers everything Michael’s ever dreamed of, the timing is all wrong. Confusion, betrayal, and secrets from the past threaten their friendship until it might be time for them to go their separate ways. Or maybe the planets will finally align, and Michael and Simon will find themselves in the right place at the right time to take the next step.
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Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, Heather C's Reviews, LGBT, Published in 2014 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Ghost Week Review: Across the East River Bridge by Kate McMurray

Guest Reviewed by Gyn


Across the East River Bridge Title:
 Across the East River Bridge
Author: Kate McMurray
Heroes: Finn & Troy
Genre: M/M Paranormal
Length: 77k words
Publisher: Loose Id
Release Date: October 11, 2011
Available at: Loose Id, Amazon, All Romance eBooks and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: When Finn’s boss sends him to a museum in Brooklyn, the last person he expects to see is his old rival, Troy. Although Finn and Troy have undeniable sexual chemistry, Finn still blames Troy for sending his career off the rails but Troy has research Finn needs. Troy also has an intriguing story; the museum he curates is haunted by the ghosts of two men who died under mysterious circumstances in 1878. Troy strikes a deal: he’ll help Finn if Finn helps him find out what happened to the men who died.

From diaries, police reports, and newspaper articles, Finn and Troy piece together the lives of the two dead men–and the romance that bloomed between them. As it becomes clear that the men were murdered, it also becomes clear that the ghosts are real and are capable of manipulating the dreams, thoughts, and actions of the living. When Finn and Troy start falling for each other, Finn worries that it’s all an illusion concocted by the ghosts to keep them working together to solve the mystery, but Troy is convinced the love between them is real. But how can he get rid of a couple of ghosts and prove it?

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Categories: 4 Star Ratings, Book Review, Guest Reviewer, LGBT, Theme Week | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment