April 24, 2010

Blog’s Book Corner: Gift of Flesh

Blog, with all we’ve talked about together, we’ve forgotten all about my #1 calling, as an author. So I thought we should start a new feature where we take a look at some of my writing, from a new and I daresay fun angle. So, what say you be the moderator in a little panel discussion between myself and some of my characters? It’s no weirder twist on reality than anything else we’ve done here!

So, today’s book is my novella Gift of Flesh, which happens to be offered totally free on the Web from Living Beyond Reality Press’s READ FREE Project. (That way, our intrigued readers can indulge for free if they wish.) Our guests today are the two stars of the book, Miakaela and Naissun. And the three of us are ready for your questions, Blog!

Blog: Okay, which one of you is the Gift of Flesh, and what exactly is that?

Miakaela: Blog, that would be me. In the story, I’m a concubine who has been selected for delivery to a neighboring king, as a tribute. I was raised for this life but have not actually performed it yet, when Naissun comes to court to serve as the Envoy who will deliver me.

Blog: I’m guessing this doesn’t take place in present day Cleveland.

Diana: You got that right, clever Blog. It’s a medieval type setting, two fantasy kingdoms called Taelorea and Royoun.

Miakaela: Naissun is the Rouyounish one: you can tell by his silver hair and amber eyes. I find them quite swoonworthy in the story.

Blog: As a gender-free entity who nevertheless is known to possess a somewhat masculine vibe, you’re pretty swoonworthy in your own right, Miakaela.

Naissun: Lest you think me just another shallow guy, Blog, I’m drawn to the Fair Tribute for more reasons than her appearance. Which I confirm is, as she coined, swoonworthy. Mia makes for an interesting female character because while she has been raised and trained in the erotic arts, she is quite innocent and child-like in many respects. And also intelligent and articulate, a woman of most attractive character. She should offer a lot of appeal to today’s women, of Cleveland and elsewhere.

Miakaela: Thank you, sir.

Diana: Mia’s story is an interesting one: She is very optimistic by nature, but not stupid. She is well aware of the downside of being carried off to a foreign country to serve its king in the bedroom. In her culture, as a woman with no legal stature beyond that of property, she knows she has no means of survival beyond the protection of the males who control her.

Miakaela: Consequently, when I sense benevolence in Naissun, I find it hard not to lean upon his mercy and enjoy what feels like his protection.

Blog: Whoa, there, Mia. Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t this guy delivering you to a horrible fate? Doesn’t that make him a bad guy?

Naissun: I certainly feel like a bad guy doing it, Blog. Especially after I fall in love with her.

Blog: Which is, of course, treason. And knowing the kind of stuff Diana writes, I’m guessing you two don’t settle for longing looks from opposite sides of the medieval forest.

Diana: I assure you, they don’t. (And this is as good a place as any to mention the book, while tasteful, is quite graphic in parts and not for young teens.)

Miakaela: Blog, Naissun has this beautiful line that he delivers so poignantly, it makes me cry just to say it out loud: “That which we remember all our lives cannot be brief.”

Diana: And there’s a sword fight.

Miakaela: It’s funny how violence and fear can serve as a kind of aphrodisiac. I didn’t exactly learn that in my concubine training.

Naissun: Not to boast, but that sword fight did give me a nice opportunity to demonstrate some skills of my own.

Blog: Sex and violence aside, are there some other compelling themes in this tale?  (for the answer, follow the jump link!)

Diana: Well, I just reread it, and I had some interesting thoughts. Today’s women (at least in most parts of the civilized world) may not have achieved perfect equality with men, but we certainly don’t have experiences like Mia’s. The submissive aspect of female nature, which most of us would like to indulge once in awhile, doesn’t play out in such a literal way.

Miakaela: You aren’t the property of men, reliant upon their good will for your survival.

Diana: Exactly. And that’s a good thing of course! But it’s fun identifying with you for awhile, Mia. Feeling what it’s like when you realize the man who holds your fate in his hands is not only capable of protecting you but desirous of doing so. While on a day-to-day basis I much prefer having my own control over my life, it’s still fun to think about your situation with Naissun.

Naissun: This assumes, of course, that I find a way for us to escape our fates as traitors to King Regit. Which no sword can achieve, no matter how well and sexily it is wielded.

Blog: True dat, Naissun! So, what did each of you enjoy most about your part in telling this story?

Naissun: At the risk of sounding vain, I really enjoy getting to be the personification of the strong, honorable male. It does have an effect on the ladies, if I may judge by some of Diana’s fan mail.

Miakaela: You don’t exaggerate a bit, my love. What I enjoy is getting to indulge my fascination with you. There are so many aspects about you that entrance me, really. Meanwhile, it’s also a pleasure to be a character who is sensuous and naïve at the same time. And both inexperienced and yet wise beyond her years.

Blog: How about you, Diana?

Diana: What’s not to love about getting to write a novella like this? It has a larger-than-life hero whose moral quandary is very compelling, and a beautiful and sympathetic heroine. It explores classic romantic themes like forbidden love and the roles of master and slave. There are fun costumes, creepy villains, some amusing dialogue, and a campout!

Blog: A campout? No way!

Naissun: Way, Blog.

Blog: Well, I for one want to read this right now. Where can I find it?

Diana: Click on the big HERE here to read Gift of Flesh online, Blog. And I’m also providing special links to our readers to download the book in pdf format or lit format for use on their ebook readers. This book has gotten some excellent reviews and is one of my personal favorites, and I’ve never regretted offering it to readers for free.

Blog: Sweet! And this was a pretty nice first shot at our Blog’s Book Corner, hey? We may even get a few clicks of the “right on” box! Thanks, guys...now avast, stand ye aside so that I mightest read the story forthwith!

Diana: You better leave writing the archaic English dialogue to me, Blog.

Blog: Okay.


  1. Ah, that was the first story of yours I ever read! "First one's free, little girl! HA HA HA!" :-)
    And then I was totally hooked on your writing. I love Fantasy, so I really enjoyed the world you created and the political landscape therein.

  2. Aw, thanks! And I guess I MAY be guilty of that sort of trickery... ;-)

  3. I love the Read Free project! Woo-hoo. Very cool that readers get to read your work for no $$$ and then find out how fabulous you are. Love that.

  4. Thanks, Cherie! Assuming they DO find me fabulous, it seems like a good thing to me! :-)