Book Name: The Autumn Lands
Author: J. Scott Coatsworth
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Cover Artist: Freddy MacKay
Release Date: 1/27/16 (ebook and paperback)
Category: fantasy, sci fi, MM romance, science fiction, elves, faery, quest
Thanks, Jessie, for having me on your blog.
I’ve only been writing this time around for about two years now. I say this time around because I made a go of being an author some twenty five years ago. I wrote a novel in my early twenties, and sent it out to ten publishers. I was sure it would be snapped up and my career as a writer would be assured.
A month went by, then two, and then the rejections began trickling in. One, then two and three and four. This novel of mine that I had worked on for years was being soundly rejected by the New York publishing community.
It took a full year before the last one came back. And then I was done.
Flash forward to two years ago, and I was determined to try again. My husband Mark told me I was the only one standing in my way, and he struck a nerve. So I set aside a regular time to write, and made a go of it.
In the intervening years, an entire new industry of MM romance had arisen. I stalked some of the publishers and dusted off some of my old, unfinished stories. I wrote a story for every Dreamspinner anthology call on the website, and I got lucky. They chose to buy “The Bear at the Bar”, and I was on my way.
It hasn’t all been smooth sailing – they rejected the next three. But the die had been cast. I was a bona-fide author. And I’ve since published nine more works – both short stories and novellas.
“The Autumn Lands” is my longest work to date at 35k, and my first printed work with my name on it. I hope y’all like it. I have a lot more planned for 2016!
Jerrith is running. Kissed by an elf, he can’t remain in his hometown of Althos any more. Not that he wanted to stay.
Caspian still hasn’t figured out why he kissed Jerrith, but he’s running too. Since he was exiled from the Autumn Lands, his past has been hazy, and his future uncertain.
But when a stray memory brings things into focus, the two decide to run toward something together. What they uncover will change how they see the world, and themselves, forever.
Jerrith Ladner ran down Dyer’s Alley in Althos, winded but not daring to stop. He swung left down Chaplain’s Lane where the lanterns cast a crazy patchwork of light across cobbles, uneven enough to give even the Night Guard pause. His lungs hurt, but he didn’t slow down and didn’t dare glance back.
The occasional passerby stared at him as he flashed past, but he ignored them. Several times he stumbled and fell, and blood dripped down his bare leg from a skinned knee. The outskirts of town were silent, with almost everyone already indoors for the night.
His recent past was a blur, with snatches of it flitting by in his head like birds, flapping and confusing him with their unsteady rhythm:
The unexpected shock of it.
The glimpse of the Autumn Lands through the Nevris man’s golden eyes.
At last, exhausted, Jerrith ducked behind a low wall that ran along the fields just outside of town and looked back.
It was quiet. There was nothing but blackness crisscrossed by lamplight at even intervals.
Almost sobbing, he sat down with his back to the wall and curled up into himself, scarcely noticing the pain that traced the lines of his rib cage or even the bright line of red on his leg.
Ever so slowly, his heavy breathing eased and his jumbled mind began to sort things out.
He had been walking to the Smithy in the early morning when the Nevris caravan had passed him by, six wagons of merchandise from the Autumn Lands covered with heavy tarps, crossing through town on its way to the stables on the far side of the village. A stranger had drawn his attention—an outrider for the caravan.
Tall and slender where Jerrith was stocky and muscled, he was a young man, more or less Jerrith’s own age. His blond hair had been pulled back behind his pointed ears, the mark of the Nevris. He moved with a quiet and restrained grace.
His eyes were wide and golden, and they’d met his as Jerrith crossed the town square on the way to ‘prentice to the blacksmith. The man’s gaze had filled Jerrith with something hot and impulsive, a sense of anticipation. Something that he had no name for.
Then he’d been gone.
Jerrith had spent the long, dizzying hours of work in the Smithy, hammering out heated metal into a new plowshare for Farmer Angus, the hot breath of the bellows tempered only by the cool springtime air from outside. Trying to forget those eyes.
The heat of the oven only served to fuel the heat he felt inside, until he thought he might explode.
Sent home at last well after nightfall, he’d heard a whispered voice from the dark alleyway between the Alchemist’s shop and the Rutting Crow. Jerrith had looked around to see if anyone was watching, then slipped into the alley, his heart beating faster and the bulge in his pants stiffening.
The man had kissed him hard and rough, and he’d returned the kiss passionately as the Nevris man pulled him close.
Teasers (Click to enlarge):
Scott has been writing since elementary school, when he and won a University of Arizona writing contest in 4th grade for his first sci fi story (with illustrations!). He finished his first novel in his mid twenties, but after seeing it rejected by ten publishers, he gave up on writing for a while.
Over the ensuing years, he came back to it periodically, but it never stuck. Then one day, he was complaining to Mark, his husband, early last year about how he had been derailed yet again by the death of a family member, and Mark said to him “the only one stopping you from writing is you.”
Since then, Scott has gone back to writing in a big way, finishing more than a dozen short stories – some new, some that he had started years before – and seeing his first sale. He’s embarking on a new trilogy, and also runs the Queer Sci Fi (http://www.queerscifi.com) site, a support group for writers of gay sci fi, fantasy, and supernatural fiction.
Want to win a $5 gift card to Amazon, B&N, or ARe?
Then help me show these authors some love by leaving a comment below.
1 winner picked monthly, cannot have won in the past 12 months.