Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Emma's Diary: Anxious, Insecure and Madly in Love (The Lesbian Diaries, Book 5)

Do you ever ask yourself: Am I normal?

I don't, because I assume I'm not. Like many people, I have mental health issues that impact the way I see the world. What I do ask myself is, "How would a normal person feel in this situation?" I often ask myself if I'm overreacting. Or underreacting. 

This is especially true in relationships. 

Last night, I started watching some of the old Frasier episodes where Daphne is dating Niles, but Niles is still married to Mel. They brought to mind this new book of mine, Emma's Diary, part of my Lesbian Diaries series. Emma is in a somewhat similar situation. Her girlfriend has just left a marriage in order to be with her, but she's agitated and jealous much of the time. Anxious. Things aren't moving fast enough.

Sitcoms probably aren't the best measure of normal behaviour, since characters are often put in unlikely situations, but I see a bit of Daphne in my Emma. Maybe you'll see a bit of my Emma in you.

Emma’s Diary

Anxious, Insecure and Madly in Love
Series: The Lesbian Diaries
Book: 5
Release Date: September 21, 2020
ISBN: 9781005713669

Anxious, insecure, and madly in love. Emma finally has everything she wants in life, so why isn't she happy? If this is supposed to be the best time of her life, then why is she constantly questioning her situation? It's not easy to build a full-time future with someone when you're sure it'll all fall apart. A million things could go wrong, but will Emma ever learn to see how much is going right?

Lesbian fiction from award-winning queer Canadian author Giselle Renarde.

Buy now from Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1039976?ref=GiselleRenardeErotica
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08GP5TR76?tag=dondes-20
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=4j_-DwAAQBAJ

Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/x/id1529206434
BN: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/2940164230272
Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/Search?Query=9781005713669

Friday, September 18, 2020

Another Place to Find My #Erotica #Audiobooks: hibooks

When I started collecting links for my audiobooks, I came across this website: hibooks. I spent ages cutting and pasting these links before realizing that, when you're on the page for one of my audiobooks, plenty more are listed below. 


Wedding Heat: One in the Hand
https://www.hibooks.com/discover/audiobook/wedding-heat-one-in-the-hand



Monday, August 24, 2020

Garbage

This is a post I wrote a few years back for a writers' blog. It's a good one, especially for fellow creatives, so I'm reviving it here at Donuts and Desires:



I started hearing this song on the radio a couple months back--"Only Happy When It Rains." I kept thinking how much I enjoyed it. The lyrics spoke to me and I liked the sound.

Last Friday, by chance, I caught a concert of indie and alternative rock on PBS. One of the bands performing was called Garbage. That's how I found out who'd been singing that song on the radio: Garbage.

That's how I found out when the song came out: 1995.

I was in high school in 1995. If I could go back, I'd spend my teen years listening to grunge and punk and... I don't know. I still don't know what's cool. When I was a high school student I listened to a classical radio station and Broadway musicals. My best friend in Grade Nine loved Iggy Pop. I should have followed her lead.

Anyway, doesn't matter. I can't go back in time. The point I'm trying to make is that this song is 20 years old, but it's new to me because I didn't listen to cool-kid music back then. Everything we create--as artists, musicians, writers--isn't just new the day it comes out. A song is new forever to new listeners. 

A book is always new to new readers.

Tax-wise, I don't know how royalties are reported in other countries, but here in Canada royalties from artistic works or inventions are reported on a T5--a statement of investment income. That's how I like to think of my books: as investments. I don't expect to do the work today and get paid for it consistently at two-week intervals. That work needs to pay off over the course decades. After I die, it'll keep earning money for my heirs (okay, my cats).

Most of my readers don't know I exist yet. They haven't found me. I haven't found them. Some of them haven't even been born. Twenty years from now a reader will find something I wrote tomorrow and it'll be new to them. I'll be new to them.

Take Care,
Giselle

Friday, August 14, 2020

Giselle's Lost Treasures is Now Available in Print!

A beautiful woman holds golden glowing treasures in her hand

Giselle's Lost Treasures
14 Erotic Tales
by Giselle Renarde


New loves, old flames, burning desires and more!

Erotica by Giselle Renarde has appeared in more than 200 erotic anthologies, but the fourteen tantalizing tales in Giselle's Lost Treasures have never been included in any such collections until now! Unearthed for your reading pleasure, these stories by award-winning author Giselle Renarde feature playfully kinky husbands and wives, lesbian lust during WWII, an incurable crush on the delivery guy, and many more couplings you won't soon forget.

Discover something new, fresh from the vault, with Giselle's Lost Treasures!

Get the paperback now from https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08F6TF81C



Thursday, August 6, 2020

Ariadne's Diary Audiobook and Book Trailer


Ariadne's Diary, the first book in my Lesbian Diaries series, is now available as an audiobook. I'm the narrator, so sit back and enjoy the sound of my mouth in your ears.

The audio version of Ariadne's Diary is available to buy from numerous audiobook retailers and listen to through various subscription services.  Below is a small list to get you started.

Audiobooks.com: https://www.audiobooks.com/audiobook/ariadnes-diary/426091
Audiobookstore: https://audiobookstore.com/audiobooks/ariadne%27s-diary.aspx
Booktopia: https://www.booktopia.com.au/ariadne-s-diary-giselle-renarde/audiobook/9781518918872.html
Downpour: https://www.downpour.com/ariadne-s-diary?sp=371717
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/audiobook/ariadne-s-diary-1
Storytel: https://www.storytel.com/in/en/books/1378239-Ariadne-s-Diary

Monday, July 27, 2020

Her Kiss: A Post About Death

I wrote these words nearly two years ago. I'm reposting them today because we're coming up on the anniversary of my cousin's death. He's been very much on my mind, lately, and I feel much more peace around him as a person than I did when I wrote this post. I've found out more about him, too. My instinct was correct--he was abusive toward his family members. He was also struggling with substance abuse, depression, chronic pain, and he was scheduled for an amputation due to an horrendous infection. Context doesn't excuse behaviour, but it does help us understand.

The other thing I got right when I wrote these words? My grandmother died only three months later.



There's no place on earth
You're likely to miss
Her kiss

I can't remember if I've talked about Kiss of the Spider Woman before. I suspect I have. The musical soundtrack found its way into my life just in time to greet my burgeoning sexuality. Chita Rivera's performance in the title role helped to establish a connection between sex and death, because that's what she is, that Spider Woman. She's Sexy Death.

In the 90s, I developed a real fascination with Kiss of the Spider Woman in all its incarnations. I borrowed the LP from the library and taped it onto cassette so I could listen to it in my bedroom as I went to sleep. I read the play by Manuel Puig. I watched the movie, which features William Hurt and Raul Julia. For me, this piece established a connection between queerness and the Femme Fatale, both of which I began to identify with as a teen.

My family's been flirting with the Spider Woman a little too much this week.

No, it's been more than flirtation.

Someone's been kissed.

On Monday, my grandmother had an appointment with a very frank doctor who advised her that it's time to start looking at end-of-life care. I'd been to visit my grandma on Saturday. She's got multiple infections again, the same ones she had when she spent all those weeks in hospital early this year. The antibiotics are making her quite ill, but beyond that she's having problems with... everything, really, at this point.

On Tuesday, my mother called me. Her voice was trembling. She said, "I've got some sad news to tell you."

I knew exactly what she was going to say. What else could it be?

"Your cousin died."

Not my grandmother. Not my 87-year-old grandmother. My cousin, who was in his early thirties.

He died of a drug overdose.

Now, here's where things get complicated, for me, for my grieving process: I can't tell you how many nights I've spent researching elder abuse resources because of this cousin. Perhaps I ought not speak ill of the dead, and I beg his soul's forgiveness if I'm mistaken, but it's my belief that this young man was an abuser in many senses of the word. He lived with his parents, both of whom are over the age of 65, and the way I overheard him speaking to them on multiple occasions... the threat of violence in his voice...

I spent my young life in a household plagued by domestic violence. I spent another decade working in a shelter for women and children escaping precisely that violence. You do develop a sixth sense, an ability to pick out abusers, and I believe, right down to the core of my being, that my cousin was one.

Not that my aunt or uncle would ever suggest such a thing. They do admit he's stolen from them. Aside from that, it's stiff upper lip all the way.

Except that my cousin's sister (who also happens to be my cousin) has moved house recently, and she asked us all to please not tell her brother where she lived.

When I received news of this young man's death, I felt much the same way I did when I found out my father had died: free. In this case, the freedom was vicarious. When there's someone in your life who poses a threat--especially when that threat is both imminent and physical--there is an element of release and relief to their death. They can't hurt you anymore, except inside your own mind.

And I suspect my aunt, my uncle and their daughter will be suffering in the extreme, inside their minds, for the weeks and months and probably years to come. They will feel guilt. The will feel culpability. They will feel responsible for what happened.

The grieving process is so much more straightforward when you simply loved the person. Of course, that's a pretty utopian view of any relationship. Is there anyone in the world you only love? You have no points of contention with? Probably not.

But in a situation like this, man, grieving is a mess.

Today my aunt and uncle paid a visit to my grandmother. They went over to inform her that their son had died, and the circumstance of his death. My mother was adamant that my grandma shouldn't be left alone after receiving the news, so two of my aunts stayed with her until bedtime, and the nurses at the retirement home will be checking in on her throughout the night.

My mom was concerned my grandma would try to kill herself. And while my grandmother does seem incredibly enamoured of that Spider Woman, I doubt very much she'd try. I don't think she's physically capable of killing herself, at this stage. To that, my mother said, "What if she's been stockpiling pills? You never know what she's capable of!"

I think the more likely scenario would be what happened in my uncle's family. A few years ago, my uncle's brother died. He was not an old man, maybe in his 50s? He died and, three days later, their mother died too. She didn't kill herself. She just... stopped being alive. It's what you hear about with elderly couples. One dies of an illness and the other dies of a broken heart. That's what happened to my uncle's mother when her son passed.

Will a grandson's death be the thing that stops my grandmother's heart beating? I wouldn't be at all surprised.

But I'll leave you with a story my aunt told me after my grandfather died. My aunt went over to my grandmother's house to help her get ready for the little visitation type thing we had for him. When she walked into my grandmother's bedroom, my aunt found my grandmother sitting on the bed, weeping. We don't cry in my family, so that was a big deal.

My aunt went over and put an arm around my grandma and said, "I know. You miss Daddy."

My grandma gave my aunt the most confounded look. Her husband and abuser of almost 60 years had just died. What she said was: "I'm finally free."

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Giselle's Lost Treasures: 14 Erotic Tales



My latest book is an erotic anthology comprised of fourteen short stories that have never appeared in print. They're stories I've written over the past fourteen years--many submitted to multi-author collections but never published.

As I wrote the blurb for this book, I kept asking myself: how do I convey to you that the stories in this book aren't pure garbage? (I have incredibly low self-esteem, by the way.)

The short stories I've written have been published in more than 200 erotic anthologies, over the years, including many Best Of books, as well as winners of a wide variety of awards. But not every story makes the cut, and some of those appear in Giselle's Lost Treasures.

But many of these stories have a much stranger history. Many of them actually WERE selected for publication. And then the publisher got bought out by another company, and the new people scrapped the vast majority of the old books, so my beautiful stories were left without a home.

Then there's a little tale called Love Yourself First.

When I was compiling Giselle's Lost Treasures, I knew in the back of my mind that Love Yourself First had never been published. I needed to make sure I had a rejection letter on file. The last thing I wanted was to receive an acceptance from the editor and have to swallow my pride and admit I'd already published it myself. That's a great way to earn a bad reputation, as well as the irritation of an editor.

So I checked my email. I checked again. I checked a third time.

I didn't have a rejection email regarding Love Yourself First. Because I'D FORGOTTEN TO SUBMIT THE STORY FOR CONSIDERATION. Talk about stupid. I even found an email back-and-forth with the editor where I'd assured them I would submit a story for their upcoming anthology the next day. Well, I never did that.

Maybe I don't need to earn a bad reputation. Maybe I already have one. I certainly hope not. It isn't malice--it's forgetfulness, I swear.

Giselle's Lost Treasures turned out to be a collection I'm very proud of. It includes a variety of stories on the literary end of erotic fiction. I invite you to buy a copy today and enjoy!

You can find Giselle's Lost Treasures at many ebook retailers, including Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1028593?ref=GiselleRenardeErotica
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08BV1SNHF?tag=dondes-20
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=32fsDwAAQBAJ

Apple: https://books.apple.com/ca/book/giselles-lost-treasures-14-erotic-tales/id1519513259
BN: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/giselles-lost-treasures-giselle-renarde/1137200759
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/search?Query=9780463820247

New loves, old flames, burning desires and more!

Erotica by Giselle Renarde has appeared in more than 200 erotic anthologies, but the fourteen tantalizing tales in Giselle's Lost Treasures have never been included in any such collections until now! Unearthed for your reading pleasure, these stories by award-winning author Giselle Renarde feature playfully kinky husbands and wives, lesbian lust during WWII, an incurable crush on the delivery guy, and many more couplings you won't soon forget.

Discover something new, fresh from the vault, with Giselle's Lost Treasures!

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1028593?ref=GiselleRenardeErotica
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08BV1SNHF?tag=dondes-20
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=32fsDwAAQBAJ

Apple: https://books.apple.com/ca/book/giselles-lost-treasures-14-erotic-tales/id1519513259
BN: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/giselles-lost-treasures-giselle-renarde/1137200759
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/search?Query=9780463820247