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BioB: Welcome, Marie! We’re big fans. In fact, we’ve reviewed 4 books of yours in the last month alone!
Marie: Thanks for having me, and thanks for those reviews! :)
BioB: So you have a new book, “Normal Enough”, that just released. Can you tell us a little about the story AND the inspiration?
Marie: Honestly, it’s kind of an odd (and sexy) little fetish story. I’d committed to writing a story about a mechanic, but the idea of writing about somebody with a car fetish came from a conversation with my brother-in-law. It’s a bit different than my usual fare, but after almost a year of not finishing anything, this was the story that finally got me writing again. I hope readers will have a good time getting to know Brandon and Kasey.
BioB: You are known for writing some really memorable characters. Do Brandon and Kasey remind you of any of your others? If you had to liken them to some characters who might they be?
Marie: Kasey is like Owen from Never a Hero. Both of them start out ashamed of some integral part of themselves, and they have to learn that they deserve love as much as anybody else.
Brandon is like Valero from Blind Space. I mean, in some ways they’re polar opposites. Brandon’s a lawyer and certainly doesn’t sport a mohawk or wear guyliner. However, Valero and Brandon are alike in that they both know exactly what they want and they aren’t afraid to go after it. Once they set their sights on the man they want, there isn’t much that can dissuade them.
BioB: Let’s talk about those characters… :)
If you could have dinner with one, who would it be?
Marie: Cole, of course. He’d either cook something fabulous, or he’d take us out to an amazing restaurant (and buy ridiculously expensive wine).
BioB: Who would you get drunk with?
Marie: Angelo and Matt, because they crack me up together. Add Cole and Jared to the mix, and it’s almost too much fun to bear.
BioB: Which would you allow to babysit your daughter?
Marie: Cami and Dante from Saviours of Oestend. I think Cami’s going to be a fabulous mother, and Dante could take my kiddo horseback riding (which is her favorite thing in the world). Also, Dante’s kind of a badass. Nobody would dare mess with my kid while he was around.
BioB: And, the age old question…which one’s your favorite?
Marie: For years, my stock answer to this has been Angelo. No character has ever filled my head the way he did. But, I also adore Dante from the Oestend series.
BioB: You’re recently announced a secondary ‘pen name’, AM Sexton. Can you tell us the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ behind it?
Marie: Anybody who follows me on Twitter has heard me talk about my dark, kinky, semi-cyberpunk novel, Release. I’ve been working on it in stops and starts for a year and a half. I seriously thought this book was going to kill me. I finally finished it at the first of the year, and I’m working on the sequel. But the real crux of the problem was that these books are unlike anything else I’ve written. The closest I’ve come is Oestend, or maybe Blind Space. But even those don’t quite compare.
Release is a low fantasy genre mash-up about a whore and a sex slave who are employed/owned by a very powerful and abusive man. The first book especially is dark, and it’s not really a romance. So, on one hand, everybody already knew I’d written this book, and I didn’t want to start over with a new pen name. On the other hand, I was pretty sure some of my readers would absolutely freak when they read it. So, after hashing it over with just about every writer I know, I opted to split the difference and go for a different pen name, but one not too far removed from Marie. I settled on A.M. Sexton.
I’ll be self-publishing Release and Return, and although they contain m/m themes, they won’t be marketed as romance. Release will be available in late June of this year, and the sequel (Return) will be released in October.
BioB: We were very honored to have you participate in our “Authors as Readers” series. I noticed from your responses that you read a lot of Fantasy books, yet you write mostly contemporary. Any plans in the near-future to explore some other categories?
Marie: Well, I feel like I’ve been doing that for the last year and a half, writing Release and Return. LOL. I’m almost ready to get back to the real world for a bit. The truth is, I enjoy writing low fantasy and genre mash-ups, like Release, and like the Oestend series, but I can’t write them all the time. They’re much more draining than the contemporaries (for me, at least). Ideally, I’d like to alternate contemporaries with other types of stories, but things rarely go the way I plan. I just have to wait and see who tugs hardest at me sleeve.
BioB: What’s ONE potentially lesser-read title of yours that you’d really like readers to give a try?
Marie: Song of Oestend, for sure. Of all of my work, the Oestend series is my personal favorite. It’s a genre mash-up – sort of half AU old west and half steampunk (some people have called it ‘cowpunk’). And for the record, it’s also pretty darn HOT. ;-)
BioB: You not only write some of our favorite solo books, but also some of our favorite collaborations. Do you have any new collabs coming out or in progress?
Marie: I recently wrote a novella with L.A. Witt called Roped In. It’ll be out next month, on April 20th. It’s a really fun, hot little BDSM story about an animal rights activist and a rodeo roper. We also hope to write a spin-off later this year.
BioB: Lastly, the blog team was dying to know the answer to this one: Any future plans for more Coda or Strawberries books?
Marie: I’m laughing, because I rarely get through an interview without hearing this question. I have to think about exactly how I want to answer it.
The three current Coda couples (Matt & Jared, Zach & Angelo, and Jon & Cole) are done. They all have their happy endings, and they don’t want me screwing that up. But, here’s what’s changed in just the last two months (and I’ve been hesitant to say anything publicly): I have another couple in my head who just MIGHT be shopping for a home in Coda, Colorado. But this is still very much in the contemplation stage. I have nothing actively in the works, and I make no promises whatsoever. :)
BioB: Thanks so much for stopping by and letting us into your brain a bit! :D Looking forward to reading “Normal Enough” and also your other upcoming releases! (and I have a few backlist titles I need to get to as well!)
Marie: Thanks for having me!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
When Brandon Kenner shows up at Kasey Ralston’s garage with a 1970 Chevelle SS 454, Kasey is smitten by both the man and his car. Between what Kasey considers a shameful fetish and his long estrangement from his family, Kasey finds it easiest to be alone, even distancing himself from his coworkers. But Brandon doesn’t think Kasey’s fetish is weird. In fact, he likes it.
Kasey doesn’t know how to resist a man as charming as Brandon, and he’s more than willing to be seduced. But what are Brandon’s long-term intentions? Kasey is afraid of hoping for too much, but equally afraid that when all is said and done, Brandon will leave, and Kasey will be left alone once again.