Thursday, October 30, 2014

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Sci-Fi Romances With The Same Titles

The main point of this post is I recently came across some science fiction romances with the same titles! So I did some digging and found a few more. The books with the earlier release date are listed first. Heat levels range from sweet to scorching. Have fun!

THE STAR PRINCESS (The Star Series #3) - Susan Grant

Ilana Hamilton isn't an adventurer like her pilot mother, or a diplomat like her do-right brother; she's a brash, fun-loving filmmaker who'd rather work behind the camera than be a "star princess" in front of it. Heiress or not, she's a perfectly normal, single woman...until Prince Ché Vedla crashes into her life.

With six months to choose a bride, the sexy royal wants to sow his wild oats. Ilana can't blame him—but fall for the guy herself? Not a chance! Hotshot pilot or no, Ché is too stuffy, too arrogant, and too old-fashioned. But when he sweeps her off her feet Ilana sees stars, and the higher he takes her the more she wants to fly. If only her heart would stopping asking where she will land.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

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What Do Authors Veronica Scott And Jody Wallace Have In Common?



They both like cats! Veronica Scott has cats named Keanu and Jake, while Jody Wallace is owned by the infamous Meankitty. Happy National Cat Day, everyone!

Image source: Cheezburger
Veronica Scott and Jody Wallace also both write sci-fi romance, and you can learn more about their work in the following links:

Sunday, October 26, 2014

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Are Alien Worlds in SFR Code For Taboo Erotica?

I'm going to open this post with a true story courtesy of my husband:

INNERSPACE: the world's most boring porno
One time in college, my husband and some friends were watching INNERSPACE (1987) starring Meg Ryan, Martin Short, and Dennis Quaid (take a moment to familiarize yourself with the premise if you haven't seen it because that detail is relevant to this story). At one point, a fellow student joined them. Let's call him "Ted." So Ted walks in the room and sees a bunch of guys watching a movie.

Ted greets them with a jovial, "Hey, how's it going?". Then he starts watching the movie along with them. Meg Ryan, fully clothed in a tasteful blouse and leather skirt, is onscreen. Per the scene requirements, she falls backwards onto the floor. Because this is a comedic SF film, hijinks ensue.

After about thirty seconds, Ted says, "Man, this is like, the most boring porno I've ever seen!" Everyone else chorused, "That's because it's not a porno!"

I shared the story of Ted because it relates to the topic of reader expectations--in this case, SFR. I, for one, have been approaching SFR as a hybrid of SF and romance. Heat levels vary, of course, but ultimately I've been defining SFR as a romance in a technology-based setting that focuses on the emotional journey of the main couple (or threesome, as the case may be). Intimate relations can be a part of that, but the couple's sexual journey doesn't define the whole plot.

However, I might have been naïve because I recently became aware that for some readers, stories in an SF setting--particularly alien ones--may actually be code for SF taboo erotica. Meaning, stories that include taboo elements but aren't tagged as such (or the tags are incomplete).
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Short SF-Romance film: THE ASTRONAUTS

THE ASTRONAUTS (2014) is a short film by Adam Bailey that, while not exactly SFR in the strictest sense, is nevertheless something that SFR fans would enjoy. It has a sweet tone and is safe for work and family. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

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EQUALS, A '1984' Style Sci-Fi Romance Film Starring Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult

I rounded up some coverage about EQUALS (2015), a film from Drake Doremus that's being described as a science fiction romance in the vein of George Orwell's 1984. Difficult to predict at this point if EQUALS will have an upbeat ending, though.

Variety posted a "first look" at an image from the film. Here's the shot, followed by the log line:


"The love story is set in the future where emotions have been eradicated, but a disease can cause them to return."

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MY LOVE FROM ANOTHER STAR Link Roundup




Since it's been a whopping 23 days (!) since I mentioned the K-drama MY LOVE FROM ANOTHER STAR here at TGE, I scoured the 'net for a few articles we can read! (Did I mention ABC is working on an adaptation of this K-drama hit?!)

Drama Queen Review posted KDrama Review: My Love From Another Star. The review is handily divided into "Love," "Meh," and "Hate" parts.

Hollywood's K-Drama Fever: How to Remake the Hit Genre (and Not Screw It Up) describes MY LOVE FROM ANOTHER STAR as "…girl-meets-E.T. romance." Cute!

Via Advertising Age, How a TV Show From Korea Sparked a Marketing Craze in China examines how MY LOVE FROM ANOTHER STAR "…touched off a marketing megatrend in China, where its stars have been tapped to sell Coca-Cola, KFC chicken, Samsonite luggage, Haagen-Dazs ice cream, Samsung smartphones and Dove chocolate."

Joyfully yours,

Heather

Friday, October 24, 2014

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Tropes Vs. Worldbuilding In SFR


I'm going to riff off of Donna S. Frelick's post about Authentic Settings A Challenge In SFR because she raises some interesting points and I wanted to unpack them a bit. Here's the least you need to know:
Those of us who write SFR tend to be science and space geeks from early childhood.  We seek out any opportunity, slim though it may be, to stand close to something, uh, space-y.  Field trips to an observatory, to the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum or, if we’re lucky, to see a launch at Cape Canaveral bring squeals of delight.  But you have to admit, we have greater challenges finding a way to immerse ourselves in setting details for planets that exist only in our minds.

That’s why, in a way, I “cheat” by setting parts of my stories here on Earth.  (That’s true of the first two of my Interstellar Rescue series, at least.  The third book, Fools Rush In, is set entirely in space.)  It helps me as a writer, but I think it also helps the reader relate to the story.  If some of the places are familiar, then a reader new to SFR might have an easier time accepting the introduction of more alien places and ideas.
After reading Donna's post, I was reminded of a book by Margaret Taylor called A FIRST LOVE NEVER DIES (Spi-Corp #1). (Thanks to passenger K for the heads up!). Read the blurb for this book:
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Cover For Jessica E. Subject's THE STAR PRINCESS

Author Jessica E. Subject recently unveiled the cover for her forthcoming Beyond Fairytales sci-fi romance THE STAR PRINCESS (Decadent Publishing). Enjoy!



New Adult Erotic Sci-Fi Romance

(unofficial blurb)

In one week, Princess Ro’sa will board a spaceship, leaving her home on Minjet to be with her betrothed on Earth. The only problem is, she detests the prince’s selfish and arrogant ways, preferring to spend time with his personal aide, a man who stirs her desires in ways she never imagined possible with his radient blue eyes and smouldering lips. And oh, the way he touches her.

Will she find a way to be with the man who steals her heart, or be forced to marry the egocentric prince?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

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Donna S. Frelick Blogs About Authentic Settings In SFR at Spacefreighters Lounge

At Spacefreighters Lounge, Donna S. Frelick blogs about Authentic Settings A Challenge In SFR:

Those of us who write SFR tend to be science and space geeks from early childhood.  We seek out any opportunity, slim though it may be, to stand close to something, uh, space-y.  Field trips to an observatory, to the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum or, if we’re lucky, to see a launch at Cape Canaveral bring squeals of delight.  But you have to admit, we have greater challenges finding a way to immerse ourselves in setting details for planets that exist only in our minds.

That’s why, in a way, I “cheat” by setting parts of my stories here on Earth.  (That’s true of the first two of my Interstellar Rescue series, at least.  The third book, Fools Rush In, is set entirely in space.)  It helps me as a writer, but I think it also helps the reader relate to the story.  If some of the places are familiar, then a reader new to SFR might have an easier time accepting the introduction of more alien places and ideas.  Of course, my ulterior motive is to hook these new readers and draw them in.  If they like the first two books in my series, then I’m hoping they’ll follow me into the more alien territory of the third book.
Head on over and let her know what you think!

Joyfully yours,

Heather



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TAMING THE ALPHA: Forthcoming Boxed Set With SFR Stories

Keep your eyes peeled for TAMING THE ALPHA (December 2014), a boxed set that will include a few sci-fi romances including one from Ella Drake (who thoughtfully alerted me to the news)!


Joyfully yours,
Heather


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Library Journal's Best Books of 2014 Includes Anna Hackett's AT STAR'S END

File this under super news: Anna Hackett's AT STAR'S END (Carina Press) made the Library Journal's Best Books of 2014 e-original romance list!


Congratulations, Ms. Hackett!

Joyfully yours,
Heather

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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S.L. Viehl Interviews Sci-Fi Romance Quarterly Fiction Editor Diane Dooley

S.L. Viehl, author of the popular Stardoc series, interviewed Sci-Fi Romance Quarterly Fiction Editor Diane Dooley at Paperback Writer. Here's a snippet:
Yesterday I mentioned a sub op from Sci-Fi Romance Quarterly, an e-zine I discovered via the Paying Markets forum on AbsoluteWrite.com. Because it's extremely rare to find a paying market for any type of SF romance, I decided to do a bit more research on the pub. That resulted in me asking Diane Dooley, SFRQ's fiction editor, a lot of pesky questions, which she very kindly took the time to answer:

Q: What made you decide to embark on this venture?

A: KS 'Kaz' Augustin, Chief Editor of the Quarterly, tech goddess and businesswoman, approached myself and Heather Massey of The Galaxy Express with a wild idea: are you two nuts enough to collaborate with me on a quarterly magazine dedicated to Science Fiction Romance? The answer was yes, we are nuts enough. I had recently served as content editor for an anthology of SFR short stories and was interested in providing a paid market for SFR in the short form. Jumping aboard the Quarterly gave me that opportunity.
Click here to read the rest of the interview. Many thanks to S.L. Viehl for helping us spread the word about SFRQ!

Joyfully yours,

Heather 

Friday, October 17, 2014

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Sci-Fi Romance Heroines and the Chivalric Code

I noticed a curious thing about some of the science fiction romances I've been reading in the past year or so. Admittedly, the pattern I noticed is general in nature and based on a small number of self-selected books.

But it really jumped out at me, so I decided to bring up the topic for discussion. Here's what I noticed: 

Many of the stories with white heroines feature a prominent rescue and/or capture fantasy narrative. Regardless of how physically strong or intelligent the heroine, the hero captures and/or rescues her at some point in the story (sometimes more than once). The heroine occasionally contributes to the mission (many of the books in question have an external plot), but the role of savior is consistently assigned to the hero.

Based on the same sample, books with a PoC heroine feature a different type of fantasy narrative. It involves the heroines either doing the rescuing/protecting, or playing an equal role with the hero in saving the day/defeating the villain. And the capture fantasy is noticeably absent.

The sample of books I've read could be an anomaly, but on the other hand, the pattern emerged at a time when more SFRs with PoC heroines have become available/visible to me.

The sample is small and completely unscientific (and therefore your reading sample may yield different results), but felt significant enough that I wanted to analyze the pattern. Why did part of the core fantasy strike me as markedly different, and why did it seem split along racial lines?
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Need Your Feedback: Sci-Fi Romance Quarterly Survey


Please take a moment to complete a survey for the Sci-Fi Romance Quarterly (of which I'm a contributing staff member). Your feedback is very important and will help us build a better magazine. Thanks for your help!

Joyfully yours,
Heather

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

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My Interview With Lara Nance At The CTR Steampunk Page


I've been tucking into The Airship Adventure Chronicles by Lara Nance, which begins with REVENGE OF THE MAD SCIENTIST. The story has a pulpy, action-adventure feel and features an ensemble cast of characters.

I've seen the author describe it as in the vein of "Around the World in Eighty Days" and based on my experience with the first book, I agree with that description. Except Ms. Nance's tale features a heroine with agency at its core, so score one for steampunk romance!

After discovering this trilogy, I reached out to the author and invited her to Heather Massey's Steampunk Cafe for an interview so we could learn more about her work. See you there!

Joyfully yours,

Heather

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

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Mini SFR Action-Adventure Roundup


Below is a random short list of action-adventure romantic SF and sci-fi romances. Between my reading and research, it seems like many SFR books lately have featured romances paired with a lot of chases, combat, and stuff blowing up!

So, just because, here's a snapshot of the range of action-adventure romances you can find in SFR (pretty great range if you ask me!):

FORTUNE'S PAWN: Paradox #1 -- Rachel Bach

Romantic SF

Devi Morris isn't your average mercenary. She has plans. Big ones. And a ton of ambition. It's a combination that's going to get her killed one day - but not just yet.

That is, until she just gets a job on a tiny trade ship with a nasty reputation for surprises. The Glorious Fool isn't misnamed: it likes to get into trouble, so much so that one year of security work under its captain is equal to five years everywhere else. With odds like that, Devi knows she's found the perfect way to get the jump on the next part of her Plan. But the Fool doesn't give up its secrets without a fight, and one year on this ship might be more than even Devi can handle.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

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Re-release Announcement: Heather Massey's IRON GUNS, BLAZING HEARTS


IRON GUNS, BLAZING HEARTS, my Weird West steampunk romance, is now available as a self-published edition. When Lyrical Press merged with Kensington, I opted to have the rights reverted back to me.

This new edition comes with a few changes. One, illustrator Christine Griffin updated the cover art:


Second, the ebook includes all-new content, including my short story "Steambot Rampage."* If you just want access to the short ("sweet" heat level), you can download it for free. Click here for links.

Readers will also discover a whole bunch of information about steampunk romance since I included previous posts I've written about the genre (updated slightly to reflect newer titles). All the bonus content adds up to over 10k words!

Having the freedom to share information about steampunk romance books by other authors in one of my ebooks is really exciting to me. I had the opportunity to pay-it-forward, so I took full advantage!

Third, the new price is a budget-friendly $2.99. IRON GUNS, BLAZING HEARTS is available through Smashwords, Sandal Press, All Romance eBooks, and Amazon.

Joyfully yours,

Heather

*You may recall my previous post regarding donating proceeds from sales of "Steambot Rampage" to the American Cancer Society. Before making this story available for free, I donated all profit as promised on 9/10/14. If you contributed via a purchase, thanks for your support!