Blog Tour + Giveaway: North to Zombieville by Meg Bawden #MM #Horror @megbawden

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Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Meg Bawden, author of North to Zombieville.

Hi Meg, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

Hi! Thank you so much for having me. So, my name is Meg, as you know, and I am an Australian author. I’ve always loved writing, but never thought I’d get to a point where I could submit my work to be published. When you’re growing up, being a writer seems like nothing but a dream, but it was a dream I wanted to follow. I’d been writing M/M since 2007, but never had the bravery to submit something, much less finish it to begin with. Dreamspinner Press has always been my first preference and when I finally finished North to Zombieville, I knew it was them who I wanted to submit it to. I expected a rejection, so when I received my acceptance email, I was beyond thrilled. I nearly cried.

North to Zombieville is a science fiction/horror story set in the future. 2029 to be exact. It’s based around a married couple, Dallas and Raleigh Jenson. Dallas is a former army rifleman, while Raleigh is a photographer. During the zombie outbreak, they are driven apart and Dallas makes it his mission of find his husband. When they finally do reunite, the horror of the torn apart city of Townsville, Queensland, has taken a toll on both of them. This story is about survival, love and friendship. It’s about believing in each other and relying on others to survive each and every day against strong and dangerous creatures.

It’s my first novel I completed and I’m quite proud of it. 🙂

Character interview – Raleigh

  • What do you find attractive in a man?

Eyes. I love a man’s eyes. There is something special about them and it’s what immediately catches my attention.

  • The first thing that went through your head when you saw Dallas?

I wondered what his heritage was. When you look at Dallas, you see a tall, muscular man with bronze skin and beautiful facial features. He’s gorgeous and the moment I saw him at his sister’s wedding, I wondered where his family came from. I assumed he was Pacific Islander or Maori.

  • Do you think you’ll insist the author visits you again?

Oh, I know she will be. Our stories aren’t done yet. We’re in for a lot trouble yet.

  • Before you met Dallas, what was your ideal man?

I never really had a type. Though, if I did, I guess I’d say it was a muscular man, but not a gym bunny. I always found gym bunnies to be too obsessive over muscle gain. I never thought I’d get a man like that though. But if we’re talking about ideal man, a man I thought I’d want to find, it’d be a kind man. Someone who treated others equally and never looked down on people. I’d dealt with that enough in my life with my parents, I didn’t want a partner like that too.

  • You’re going out for dinner. What’s your favorite food?

Bangers and mash. No seriously, I love bangers and mash and there’s not even any innuendo in that. I love sausages. They are my favorite food. But if we’re talking about a nice restaurant, then Italian food.

North to Zombieville (Zombieville #1)

Meg Bawden

NorthtoZombieville_FINAL1

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Brooke Albrecht

Length: 67,114 words

Release Date: May 18, 2016

Blurb:

The year is 2028, and Dallas and Raleigh Jenson are torn apart when a worldwide zombie apocalypse ravages their home of Townsville, Australia. After a year of searching, Dallas, a former Australian army rifleman, finally reunites with Raleigh, but it’s not like old times. Not only do they have zombies to contend with, but also other humans, changed by desperation and willing to do anything to survive.

Dallas and Raleigh have changed too. So much so, that Dallas struggles with the idea that Raleigh no longer needs or wants his protection. But they will need to rely on each other and find strength in their love as they are forced to evade zombies and watch their friends die. As they fight for their lives in a brutal landscape where every supply and every step toward a potential cure is a battle to the death, only their trust in each other can keep them from perishing.

Goodreads Link

Categories: Horror, M/M Romance, Science Fiction

BUY LINKS:

Dreamspinner | Amazon | AllRomance


EXCERPT:

A loud crash and screams from downstairs made them pull away. The diners on the top floor were glancing around worriedly, some of the men showing caution as they stood, but making no move to head downstairs and see what was happening.

Raleigh frowned toward the stairs. “What was that?”

Dallas narrowed his eyes and stood, taking Raleigh with him. The screams were filled with pure fear. It wasn’t just downstairs, though. Distant shrieks echoed through the street as well, but when Dallas glanced over the balcony railing, he couldn’t see anything odd. A crowd had formed on the sidewalk and they were peering around the street in confusion. Glass shattered, and then a rush of people scrambled out of the Strand Delight. One lady fell on top of the glass, her legs dragging over the shards, but whatever scared her was more important than the pain she obviously felt from the glass, because she kicked off her high heels and got to her feet to run again.

Car horns and crunching noises similar to pieces of metal colliding with each other filled the air. A car accident, maybe? But there was more than the sound of one accident. It put Dallas on high alert.

“Raleigh, stay here.” Dallas moved toward the stairs.

“Dallas, I’m coming with you.” Raleigh started to follow him.

“No! I said stay here, and I mean it.” It came out as an angry growl. He hadn’t meant to snap, but if something was going on downstairs, he didn’t want Raleigh in the middle of danger. He had defense training; his husband didn’t. “Please, baby, stay here,” he said, softer than before.

Raleigh hesitated and then nodded. He took a step back toward his seat. Dallas felt eyes on his back as he descended the stairs.

The sight he found nearly made him retreat. Tables were upturned, the glassware and utensils scattered over the floor. Bodies lay on top of each other, blood oozing from holes and torn skin. An older lady’s body was askew in the middle of the room, covering a young boy who couldn’t have been older than ten. His body was twitching, but his neck was in pieces, chunks of meat torn from his jugular. The people left standing were screaming or running toward the exit.

The people who had fallen didn’t look right. Their faces had deep gashes, with blood gushing from their cheeks and down their chins. With some, their mouths drooped on one side, their gums dark and bloody. Their eyes were lifeless, as though they were dead on the inside.

People on the streets ran into the restaurant, pausing as they saw the bodies on the floor Badgestart to move and shift as though they were puppets on a string, only missing their master. Upon taking in the scene, they’d run out again.

It all seemed absurd, like a B grade movie that didn’t even make it to the cinemas. Dallas frowned, taking a step up on one of the stairs, farther away from the scene. He stared at one of the women, who rose, her face scratched up badly.

“Ma’am, are you all right?”

She didn’t respond, only groaned in an animalistic way. She started to stumble toward Dallas, her left leg dragging behind her. Her foot was bent backward and she was putting all her weight on her very twisted and broken ankle.

“Ma’am, are you all right?” Dallas repeated, but she ignored him, continuing her walk toward him.

Diners from upstairs came rushing past him, shoving him roughly out of the way.

“No! Don’t go out there!” But it was too late. They weren’t listening to him—fear controlled their every movement.

This had to be a nightmare. It was the night before their anniversary and he was still in bed, he had to be.

He wasn’t watching the lady, and she managed to catch him off guard and shove him to the ground. She slammed herself on top of him, her teeth bared as she dived toward his neck. He raised his elbow, slamming it into her face. She let out a pained squeal and her head jerked back, making her neck crack loudly. But that still didn’t deter her. This time, she went for his arm.

Over the lady’s shoulder, Dallas saw a man clambering out of a door. The man paused, glancing around the room, obviously searching for something. Survivors. Dallas opened his mouth to ask for help at the same time the woman grabbed a piece of wood from a broken table and slammed it against his forehead. Dallas’s head smashed hard against the floor, and his vision flickered for a moment.

By the time he looked again, the man was gone. Dallas would have to deal with the woman on his own. Using all his strength, he shoved at her twitching body, and she went flying backward into a broken chair. She shrieked as Dallas struggled to stand. His legs felt like jelly beneath him.

He stared at her in confusion. How did she keep getting up? It was impossible. But this entire thing was impossible.

“Dallas!”

Raleigh’s voice. He had to get back to his husband. He spun on his heel, but before he could get anywhere, a hand grabbed his ankle and he fell forward.

“Dallas, where are you?” Raleigh’s voice was on the verge of desperation. “Dal!”

“Raleigh!” Dallas called back, but the sound of a car horn close by drowned it out.

As he opened his mouth to call out again, whatever had grabbed him clawed up his trousers. He twisted and stopped in shock. A man this time, but he looked worse than the lady. He was older, with a receding hairline, but his forehead was peeling and blood was cascading down the side of his head. Only part of his teeth remained in his mouth, and even those were halfway out of his gums. To top it off, he only had half a body. From the waist down, there was nothing but his insides dragging behind him.

“No, no, no. I don’t want to go!” Raleigh’s voice sounded distant among the screams from outside. “He’s alive! No. He’s alive!”

“Raleigh!” Dallas shouted again, but as before, his voice was lost in all the other noise.

Anger and anxiousness welled in his chest, and he let the emotions take over. He kicked at the man holding him, slamming his boot into his face. The man squealed as his skull shattered under the force of Dallas’s kick. His body went limp and he released Dallas.

Rising, Dallas quickly retreated back upstairs to Raleigh and made his way toward the balcony. He paused when he found it empty.

Fear curled in his belly, his skin tingling. “Raleigh?”

He was met with silence.

Raleigh?”

But still he got no answer. He spun around, surveying the dining room.

“Leigh, where are you?” He looked out toward the street. More and more people ran out of the restaurants along the Strand, and very quickly the streets filled with running, screaming people. He had no fucking idea what was happening.

Dallas ran to the railing, looking over the balcony. It was then that he realized there was a ladder leaning toward the railing. Raleigh must have climbed down it.

Dallas took two steps at a time. His feet hit the ground and he desperately scanned his surroundings. He pulled out his phone and rang Raleigh. It went straight to message bank. He angrily pressed the End Call button.

“Raleigh!”

The scared crowd ignored him for the most part, though a couple shoved him hard as they ran past. Some tried to get into their cars, but with too many people in the streets, they couldn’t go far. A couple of drivers tried to nudge people with their vehicles, but it only had negative effects. Some of the people in the streets were just like the woman in the Strand Delight. Their eyes were dead, their faces and any other exposed skin bloody and scratched.

One of the men nudged with a car spun around, eyes flashing a dark red as he slammed his hands on the hood. The hood made a crunching sound, and the man screamed, spit flying from his mouth as he pounced on the crumpled hood. The woman in the car shrieked and jumped out, kicking off her heels and running down the street with the mobs. But the man obviously wasn’t going to allow that. He ran after her. He wasn’t fast, but he was fast enough to catch her. He grabbed her by the hair, jerking her backward. She screamed again, but he threw her on the ground and tore at her neck like a starving cannibal.

Dallas made to move toward them, but the woman’s scream turned into a gurgle and then nothing. It was too late. Dallas could have saved her life, but he hadn’t. He couldn’t. He needed to find Raleigh. He needed to protect his husband.

“Raleigh?” His voice cracked under the strength of his roar. Yet it was barely audible over the cries of fear filling the street.

The woman from the restaurant dragged herself out of the Strand Delight. She stretched out toward Dallas, a stupid grin on her face that caught bloody teeth flashing at him.

Dallas acted on adrenaline. He ducked beneath her arms, spinning until he was standing at her back, then grabbed her head, twisting it hard and quick until her neck snapped and she fell to the ground, lifeless.

He dropped to his knees, his stomach churning in fear and desperation as the need to vomit slammed into him. But he held it in.

“Raleigh….” he whispered, biting his lip hard. He needed to find his husband.

Something shone in his eyes from under the lamplight and he immediately zeroed in on Raleigh’s phone. He grabbed it, tapping it desperately, but it was dead. “Dammit!” he growled. “Raleigh, where are you?”

Final

MEET THE AUTHOR

Meg Bawden was born and raised in North Queensland, Australia. She’s loved stories since before she can remember and has always enjoyed creating characters of her own, even if it did begin with drawing faces on toilet rolls and giving them names. Wiring has always been a passion of hers and she’s loved the M/M genre since 2004, the first book she read being Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez.

Writing M/M since 2007, Meg has never had the confidence to attempt publishing her own stories, but in 2015, she decided that it was all about to change thanks to the amazing friends she’s made in the M/M genre and their support and encouragement. So watch out world, Meg Bawden is coming out to have some fun!

Facebook | Facebook Author Page | Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY

Rafflecopter Prize: Signed paperback copy of ‘North to Zombieville’ by Meg Bawden

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TOUR DATES & STOPS:

18-May: Inked Rainbow Reads, MM Good Book Reviews, Joyfully Jay

19-May: Outrageous Heroes, The Dark Arts

20-May: Full Moon Dreaming, Boy Meets Boy Reviews

23-May: Bayou Book Junkie, A.M. Leibowitz

24-May: Molly Lolly, Divine Magazine

25-May: BFD Book Blog

26-May: Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

27-May: Book Lovers 4Ever, Velvet Panic, Kirsty Loves Books

30-May: Love Bytes, Ogitchida Book Blog, Prism Book Alliance

31-May: My Fiction Nook, Man2ManTastic

 

 

WillPride

Dead Camp Tour ~ Sean Kerr: Interview + Giveaway #Erotica #DarkFantasy #MMRomance

RC

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Sean Kerr author of Dead Camp.

Hi Sean, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

Hello! Well, I’m a 46-year-old gay man living in Cardiff, Wales, with my partner of 27 years, Derek. Oh, and our two cats, Rita and Harry, and a load of tropical fish! I have worked in retail most of my life, and for the past 11 years, I have been running my own Interior Design business in Cardiff with my fabulous business partner, Jayne. I am a huge sci-fi and horror fan, Doctor Who being my first love in television, Alien my first love in film. Sigh. How I would love to write for both of them, but that is never going to happen, so move on lol.

Working for yourself, and trying to pay yourself, is not easy. Bit like being an author then lol. In an ideal world, I would love to see our shop run by someone else so that I could spend my days writing, but again that is just not going to happen. I love the design industry, I love working with fabrics and blinds, and helping our customers to create a beautiful home, but at the same time, I do not want to spend the rest of my life tied to our store. The recession hit 3 years after we opened and it has been a struggle, but we survived, and Jayne and I are proud of our achievement.

BadgeWriting has always been my passion. I never thought, never in a million years, that I would be published, and here I am with two books out, and I am now busy writing my third! When I started this series of books two years ago, I wrote to every agent in the Artists and Writers yearbook, and then some, well over 200 emails and letters, and I have a huge pile of ‘no’s’. I was on the verge of giving up. I knew my book was a bit fruity, I knew my book was contentious, but it was something I really wanted to write, and I loved every minute of writing it. Just when I thought there was no point in pursuing Dead Camp, I started to write something else, but then I thought I would try contacting some publishing houses direct. I contacted 6 publishers, and within two weeks had 3 offers of a contract! To say that I screamed a lot would be an understatement. I signed with the wonderful Extasy Books, and boy are they fabulous. My editors, cover designer, all of them, just wonderful, talented, incredibly supportive people, and I feel mighty privileged to be with them. I owe them everything, for making my dream come true, and I hope that we will be together for very, many years!

Dead Camp is a series of books, all with different stories that tell one big saga. As a gay man, I wanted to write it from a gay perspective, so all my characters are gay, well, except the odd one or two…spoilers sweetie. The series of books start during World War 2, and as they progress, you will find yourself in Victorian London, the Crucifixion, and then back to the downfall of Hitler. It’s a complex story, and every character is linked, even if they don’t know it. Book 1 & 2 are out, and I am currently working on book 3, which has been the toughest write so far. This book is proving particularly challenging because of the subject matter, but I think I have just broken the back of it, so now, with a bit of a push, I can finish the first draft.

When all is said and done, Dead Camp may contain Vampires, Ghosts, Demons and Angels, but ultimately, it is a story of a father’s forgiveness, and tolerance of that which is different, in a roundabout sort of way. I know the very last page of the very last book, it is there, in my many, many notes, and all I can say is, have a very large box of tissues at the ready!

  • Tell us about your book.

Dead Camp came out of my desire to tell a story about gay characters from the perspective of a gay man. It also grew out of my need to tell my version of the Vampire myth. It worried me that so many fantastic books about Vampires already exist, by authors far more talented than I, but I have always loved Vampires and I have always wanted to write about them, so Dead Camp is my own spin on a familiar subject.

Eli is a Vampire with no memory of being human, so this series of books is about his journey of discovery, about himself, and ultimately about the world in which he inhabits. The trouble is, his identity will have a huge impact on the rest of the characters. Lie after lie, secret after secret, and all of it to preserve his identity, and to hide it from him. The greatest love that he has ever known kept that secret, and lied about his own past in the process, so when this all starts to bleed out, Eli is thrown into a world, and a war, that he really would rather hide away from.  Book 1 is really about Eli having to re-engage with the world, and book 2, the consequences of allowing himself to feel again. Some truths are better left buried, and some truths are just too painful to learn.

  • How difficult was it to get into the main character’s head?Banner300x250

I loved writing Eli. Once I decided that he was going to be a rude, rough, dirty son of a bitch, his voice came relatively easy. Because I had the plot of the books written out in detail, and because I knew exactly where each scene and each chapter needed to start and end, his voice very quickly asserted itself. I tried a number of passes at the prologue, and when I hit on the tone that felt good, I was away.

  • Is this book a standalone or do you plan on visiting it again?

Dead Camp was planned as a series right from the start. It is a huge historical saga that spans a number of historical events, so I knew it would have to be a number of books, with each event taking place within its own novel, and each novel linked to the other by these events and characters. Things mentioned in book 1 or 2, will not pay off until book 3, and then it will all start to come together in the last two novels. The last book. What can I say about the last book in the series? The plan is to make the reader cry like a baby. That is all I can say. Spoilers sweetie.

  • Why did you choose to write M/M stories?

When I started writing, I did not realise it was M/M. What I mean by that, is that until the first book was published, and I started to meet all these fantastic people on Facebook groups, I did not realise that M/M was a genre in its own right. What I started out to do, and what I am still doing, is to write a book about gay men, from a gay perspective, because that is all I know how to write. I am a gay man writing for gay people. One of the most surprising things I have realised about this genre, is the readership of such books. I wrote Dead Camp because I wanted to write something as a gay man, from a gay perspective, for gay people. Yet, this genre, M/M romance, gay fiction, whatever you may call it, is read by a huge, enormous readership of wonderful, supportive, and very kind women. Married women with children, single women, just lots of fantastic women. I had no idea. When my Facebook presence began to grow, it was only then that I realised this fact, and I have met so very many wonderful women who have really enjoyed my books, and who really love this genre of M/M fiction, and that surprised me more than anything. I assumed, stupidly, that I was writing for a primarily gay audience. WRONG! And I am so glad, because I have now been accepted into a world that I never knew existed, and I love it, and I love the people who inhabit it.

  • Where do you find your inspiration?

Film, television, and documentaries continue to be a great source of inspiration. I love the Discovery channel. I once watched a documentary about Hitler and his obsession with the occult. That made something in my head explode, and before I knew it, I had the outline of Dead Camp plotted. Also, as I work through an idea, other ones present themselves. Sometimes they fit, sometimes they have to be put away for another book. When an idea hits me, I write it down, and then I start to write around it, play with it, and see where it leads me. Dead Camp presented a series of strong ideas, and once I realised that they could all be linked, that there was an entire series of possibilities, I was at my computer writing furiously.

I recently finished reading a book, The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova, and I consider that book to be the true successor to Stoker’s Dracula. However, as I was reading it, another idea hit me, albeit one that does not involve Vampires. Her style of writing, and the way she tells her story, got me to thinking about how I could tell a story in a slightly different way, and then I realised that I had the outline for a completely new book. So I wrote it down, put it in my file, and that will be my project once Dead Camp is finished.

Dead Camp (Dead Camp #1)

Sean Kerr

deadcamp300Publisher: Exstasy Books/ Length: 260 pages

Blurb:

Eli is an ancient vampire with an ego the size of a planet and a sex drive to match, but his tumultuous past left him broken, so he hides from humanity and cowers from love, left to endure the crushing guilt that haunts his every waking moment. Even his best friend Malachi, a ghost who is hopelessly in love with Eli, remains unaware of all that transpired in London. Malachi can never know the truth.

When the Angel Daniyyel pays an unwelcome visit, Eli must face his secrets, secrets that he has tried so long to hide. To make matters worse, a chance encounter with the most beautiful man he has ever seen shatters his beloved isolation, pushing him into the world of the living once more. Something about this strange man seems so familiar, but Eli can’t even remember who he was before he became a vampire, never mind explain the unwanted emotions the enigmatic stranger ignites in his dead heart. So Eli has a choice—return to the world that ruined him, or continue his self-imposed exile with no hope of salvation.

Categories: Dark Themes, Erotica, Fiction, Gay Fiction, Historical, Horror, M/M Romance, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance, Vampires/Demons, Thriller

Goodreads Link

BUY LINKS:

Extasy books  | Amazon UK | Amazon US
| Barnes & Noble Nook | Kobo

MEET THE AUTHOR

       I think that as I approach that milestone that is fifty, I must be one of the oldest
gamers on the face of this earth. Many a day you will find me lashed to my PS4 enjoying a good session of Skyrim. Who doesn’t love a good session of Skyrim?
I love writing—I have done it since I was a child when I would happily write about the latest episode of Doctor Who (Tom Baker in those days) in my schoolbooks. Growing up and becoming a business owner with my friend Jayne left little time to pursue my dream of publication, but of late the desire and the compulsion to put words onto paper have once again dominated my life so that now, my laptop has become surgically fused to my fingertips.
There is something desperately satisfying about telling a story. My fascination with 11885361_402721776518984_2536003115138179722_nHistory, Religion and Conspiracy theories have, in this instance, gone hand-in-hand with my love of all things vampire, fantasy, sci-fi and horror. I drove my parents nuts when I was young because that was all I would read about in books, all I would watch on television, but they have held me in good stead, and long may my obsession with the subjects continue, at least, that is, until the day they put me in my own wooden box. And imagination is such a wonderful thing. I once had a rather vivid dream about David Tennant and the Tardis console, but I could not possibly go into details about that here. Let’s just say that my polarity was well and truly reversed.
Dead Camp is just the beginning. I have to check my knickers every day at the thought that this book is now in the public domain. My first book, and I hope the first of many. And to those out there who love to write, who love to transport us to new worlds, or old worlds with a twisted perspective, I say to you keep going. I never thought I would ever see my work available to download, and thanks to eXtasy Books, the dream that I always thought unobtainable has finally come true. So thank you all at eXtasy, I am one happy homosexual thanks to you, and thank you the reader for taking the time to read this strange tale and allowing Eli and the incomparable Malachi into your lives.
And now I really need Skyrim.

Facebook  | Facebook Author Page | Twitter | Goodreads  | Dead Camp site|

GIVEAWAY

Rafflecopter Prize: eCopy of Dead Camp #1
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TOUR DATES AND STOPS:

29-Mar: Full Moon Dreaming, Velvet Panic, BFD Book Blog

5-Apr: Rednecks and Romance, Jessie G. Books, Hearts on Fire, The Dark Arts

12-Apr: Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

19-Apr: Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Inked Rainbow Reads, Emotion In Motion, Book Lovers 4Ever

26-Apr: Bonkers About Books, Divine Magazine, Nephy Hart, The Hat Party

3-May: My Fiction Nook, MM Book Escape, Bayou Book Junkie

10-May: Dawn’s Reading Nook, Cathy Brockman Romances, Unquietly Me

17-May: Kirsty Loves Books, The Novel Approach

24-May: Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Havan Fellows

31-May: MM Good Book Reviews, Making It Happen, Love Bytes

7-Jun: Happily Ever Chapter, Alpha Book Club

14-Jun: Molly Lolly, A.M. Leibowitz, Outrageous Heroes

 WillPride