Work hard, play hard, love hard…
Nothing is sexier than someone who knows what they want and has the confidence go after it. This anthology is crammed full of hot romances featuring those kinds of rough-around-the-edges alpha personalities–stories about the kind of men and women who ride horses during the day and their partners at night, who speak few words but mean every one of them, and who would never break their own personal code of honor. We’re talking about cowboys… and cowgirls.
This anthology contains seven romances with a Western theme that run the gamut from sweet to sizzling.
by Christine Morgan
Emma is a demure young lady from Back East, or so she appears until her stern parents discover her inclination toward lusty leanings, and decide she’d best be safely married off before she can ruin the family reputation. She finds herself on a stagecoach bound West, set to wed an old man she’s never met. When a strapping cowboy boards the same stage, Emma realizes this might be her last chance to give in to her wild and wanton ways, but the journey may yet have some surprises in store for them both.
What angered Emma the most was that she was being punished for something she hadn’t done. Or, rather, that because she was being punished for it, she wished she’d gone ahead and done it.
How easy it would have been, how delightful! And they had, almost. If she’d been less coy, dash it all! If she’d not played at maidenly demure resistance, and made him pant vows of undying adoration in
her ear… why, it might have been long over with by the time Papa came in, and the ache, the terrible need in her, might finally have been met. The need that had burned since she’d discovered the books. She had never dreamed people did the deeds described in their pages, depicted in their drawings.
The flame had begun then, flickering, lapping, making her think of things she had never considered before.
Christine Morgan spent many years working the overnight shift in a psychiatric facility, which played havoc with her sleep schedule but allowed her a lot of writing time. A lifelong reader, she also reviews, beta-reads, occasionally edits and dabbles in self-publishing. Her other interests include gaming, history, superheroes, crafts, cheesy disaster movies and training to be a crazy cat lady. She can be found online at https://www.facebook.com/christinemorganauthor and https://christinemariemorgan.wordpress.com/
Time Machine Cowboy
by Trayce Primm
A boring end to a cold winter’s day means shedding work clothes and popping a frozen dinner into the microwave. But once in a magical while, the package contains a sizzling surprise that heats up more than a cold heart.
A sharp, mechanical ping from the microwave summoned her back to the kitchen. She picked up a pot holder and pulled on the oven door, frowning slightly when it wouldn’t open. She pulled harder, then turned the timer on and off, hoping it might be of some help. A spark arced inside, setting off a humming, buzzing sound. Before she could move, a kaleidoscope of multi-colored, neon-bright light erupted from the small machine, filling the room with streaks of smoke and jagged blue bolts of lightning.
She tried to get out of harm’s way, but it was too late. The Technicolor web held her fast, paralyzed with fear, yet unhurt. Visibility dropped to zero, and she felt disoriented by the cacophony of light and sound. The noise intensified to a horrible crescendo, then settled down to a plinking, rhythmic regularity, familiar somehow.
Her senses returned one by one, picking up a jumble of isolated images. The sound of a badly tuned player piano—the tinkling dance hall classic, A Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight—the yeasty smell of beer mingled with the acrid pall of cigar smoke, a glimpse of a polished wooden bar and rows of bottles lined up behind it and the tantalizing aroma of hickory-smoked barbeque. As the colored aura cleared, she realised she wasn’t alone anymore.
By day Trayce Primm transforms women into goddesses with her flashing shears; by night she uses her razor sharp words to transform boring reality into fantasy. She is a poet, published author of sensual romance, and is currently awaiting publication of a reincarnation murder mystery.
Lady of Lacrymosa
by Brantwijn Serrah
When Katarina started her shift in the saloon, it was a night like any other. That was before the silent lady gunslinger strolled in through the batwing doors. Katarina can’t keep her eyes off the woman, and when the gunslinger starts to dance, sensuously spinning a black magic spell, Kat finds herself hopelessly, utterly lost. By morning, nothing will be the same.
The West gets weird, the night the strangers come to Lacrymosa.
Once she’d tended to her needs and tidied herself again, she slipped into the poorly-lit passageway between the saloon and the boarding rooms above. She crossed to the barroom door, still flustered and distracted, and didn’t notice the hand reach out from under the stairs and haul her back.
A short cry barely made it to her lips when there came a hot, soft mouth upon her own. Katarina felt the rough wood of the pantry door at her back, and a slender hand slid round the back of her neck, holding her captive to the kiss. A slim leg nudged between her thighs, rustling her skirt. She might have panicked but even before the scent of leather and magnolia hit her she knew who the phantom would be.
“What are you doing?” she whispered. Putting her hands up between them she nudged the lady away. “You don’t belong here. Get out, get back into the bar, or I’ll scream…”
Lady Gunslinger gave a husky, quiet little laugh, but she said nothing. Her hand found Katarina’s wrist in the dark, and without a word, she tugged the saloon girl towards the stairs.
Opening up Your Own Sexuality through Writing Erotica
There are a lot of reasons I enjoy writing romance and erotica, not the least of which is sheer enjoyment. I recently realized these genres are the only ones where I find myself capable of writing something actually literary, something more than simple fiction. That’s not to say fiction and genre storytelling aren’t wonderful ways to express one’s writing passions; I prefer a good escapist fantasy over heavy literary tome any day. But I find it fascinating how deeply erotica can reflect subtle truths about the human condition and the people we truly are.
One thing erotica has allowed me to do is to fully realize my own sexuality. As a child I understood the hetero-normative view of the world. When I wanted to kiss my female best friends, I knew full well I’d be going against the status quo. I knew never to tell a female friend I loved her without qualifying it as platonic. I understood that I was STRAIGHT, 100%, because I had a boyfriend.
But I also knew that women were beautiful. I knew I loved to draw them and I loved the sight of their nude forms. I knew I felt more interest in them, aesthetically, than I did men. I knew when my scene partner in drama class grabbed me and kissed me on the lips—a fake kiss, of course, a “stage” kiss—I really did wish she’d meant it for real.
I made it out well out of high school and into college—and an ever-deepening intimate relationship with a male partner—before ever admitting I might be less than 100% straight. I’m probably not the first person in the world to discover the infamous Kinsey Scale and be utterly flabbergasted by the idea I didn’t have to be entirely one way or the other. The concept of bisexuality, not completely unknown to me, was suddenly visible and tangible.
The gap of years between discovering the Kinsey scale and connecting all those moments when I wanted to love girls instead of boys, though, and my current ability to readily call myself bisexual, took quite a bit more time and understanding. This is when I really began writing erotic fiction. In fact, the very first erotic piece I really sat down and wrote—Life Drawing—was at its core a look into my own curious discovery of sexual orientation.
Erotica has allowed me to explore my own sexuality in ever-increasing ways, and at a wonderfully safe distance from any disruptive influences. I opened myself up to exploring the landscape of lesbian attraction and interrelationship. Even today, I couldn’t exactly put in words the sort of distinctions I discovered, or name to you exactly what each tale said to me about my own feelings, but I understood myself more and more each time I opened a new door through my fiction.
But I’m not a lesbian. I’m bisexual, and that’s a different thing entirely. It’s another distinction I felt my way through while writing. Because my bisexual characters are different from my gay characters and my straight characters. It’s easy to think they’re just “in-between”, but when you write them and you delve into them and you get to know them, you realize it’s not that simple at all. Bisexual characters have different expectations, different desires, and different needs in same-sex relationships as opposed to opposite-sex relationships. Their view—just like my view—isn’t just a matter of being open to sex with either gender. It’s more nuanced.
Nuance is a factor I pick up on most when I can see it on the page. When my bisexual character responds to her surroundings and situations; when my gay character is faced with assumption and labeling; when my heterosexual character stumbles into a situation with a same-sex secret admirer. One can never really assume things will always go according to plan.
Writing erotica and erotic characters opened my eyes to even more subtle gradients between the black-and-white of gay vs. straight. It leads me to understand the concept of a “singular same-sex attraction”, or how a gay character identifies him or herself based not on actual deed, but on emotional and mental self. The genre of erotica opens up not just avenues of the straight-bisexual-gay continuum, but of polysexuality, pansexuality, asexuality, intersex, and so on. It opens doors not just into the insight on sexual orientation but sexual personality: connecting with those lifestyles and fetishes you don’t yet understand, but want to understand.
The fact is, I’m a writer before I am anything else, and a storyteller, and a fantasizer. Escapist literature is wonderful, and I love to tell it. But all stories carry a weight of some truth in them, not just for the reader, but for she who put pen to page. I learn when I write; I learn about myself when I write. I learn about my own real self, and needs, and love. And that may be one of the most liberating and empowering things in writing erotic literature.
When she isn’t visiting the worlds of immortals, demons, dragons and goblins, Brantwijn fills her time with artistic endeavors: sketching, painting, customizing My Little Ponies and sewing plushies for friends. She can’t handle coffee unless there’s enough cream and sugar to make it a milkshake, but try and sweeten her tea and she will never forgive you. She moonlights as a futon for four lazy cats, loves tabletop role-play games, and can spend hours pencilling naughty, sexy illustrations in her secret notebooks.
Brantwijn has two romance series currently in-progress with Champagne Books. She’s also had short stories published in several small press anthologies. She has author pages on Goodreads and Amazon, and loves to see reader comments on her work. Her short stories and audio readings occasionally pop up at Foreplay and Fangs, her blog at http://brantwijn.blogspot.com/.
Hunted and Haunted
by Jen DeLuca
A key witness in her ex’s corruption trial, Anna needs to lay low for her own safety. While she’s stashed in a remote hunting cabin in Montana, her nightly erotic dreams make her wish that sheriff’s deputy Gabe McKenna’s protective custody was a little more hands-on. Then she learns about the ghost who shares the cabin with them and discovers it’ll take both men to keep her safe… and satisfied.
“Tell you what?”
“Tell me I’m safe. Tell me you’ll stay.” I had come out here because I was afraid, but that feeling was long gone, replaced with something much more primal. I wanted him in my room, in my bed, but my mouth couldn’t form the words.
Something must have shown on my face, because he started toward me. Slowly, deliberately, the soles of his boots like ominous music against the wood floor. “You’re safe,” he reminded me. “I’m not going anywhere. Nothing’s going to happen to you.”
His voice was a growling whisper, and I strained to hear it as he walked closer still. Heel, toe. Heel. Toe. Clomp-clomp. Clomp-clomp. The closer he came, the harder my heart thudded in my chest, a counterpoint to his footsteps. I didn’t shrink back at his approach, just kept my eyes on his as he came closer.
He stopped a scant inch away, the heat from his body radiating toward mine. The quick rise and fall of my breath brushed the soft fabric of my camisole against his chest in a barely-there whisper. He was a large man, and this was a very small cabin. With anyone else, I would have felt threatened, but this was Gabe and I wanted nothing more than to curl into his body.
They say write what you know. When Jen DeLuca was 6, she wrote stories about girls who had dogs, played tennis, and took naps. She’s branched out a little since then, and now her stories usually include some snark, some angst, and some kissing. A Floridian by way of Virginia, Jen loves Hokies football, latte-flavored lattes, and the Oxford comma. She no longer plays tennis but she takes as many naps as she can.
My Midnight Cowboy
by Pumpkin Spice
If chocolate is the way to a man’s heart, then pastry chef Lucy Baker has the recipe for success. But will her culinary skills melt the most-hard hearted bachelor in Wyoming?
A chance encounter on a New Year’s Eve flight leaves two strangers to discover unbound pleasure and a hunger for more sexual discovery.
I sat alone in complete darkness until the tram pulled into a stop. When the doors opened, light poured into the car and suddenly Ben stood before me. I gasped. He said nothing.
The tram resumed moving toward another tunnel and darkness overtook the tram. I felt for him, but he was no longer in front of me. A brief pocket of light before the next tunnel spliced through the tram and Ben was on the bench seat beside me, his voice in my ear.
“Hello.”I waited for him to touch me. “I wondered where you went.”
“I promised to look after you and I plan to keep that promise.”
“People break promises.”
He reached his hands into my hair and pulled me toward him. His mouth grazed my neck and nibbled at the tender skin. “I don’t break promises and neither will you.”
“Maybe.”I dug my fingers into his thick, wavy hair. “Maybe not.” I toyed with him and his hold on me strengthened. The ferocity of his kiss ignited my senses and made my skin prickle with pleasure.
Pumpkin Spice is the published author of adult romantic fiction. Her naughty fairy tale line “Scarlett Hood & The Hunter” and “Goldlie Locks & The Brothers Bear” is published by Evernight Publishing along with her Cupid Conquest romance, “The Hart Moment.” Pumpkin’s favorite time of year is fall when the leaves are turning, the weather is crisper and the nights are a whole lot longer. Write to her at: email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @PumpkinSpiceU2
Coming Up Roses
by Anna Kyle
To get the long-coveted D.V.M. initials after her name, healer Rose is forced to spend the last two weeks of her internship at the Finnegan Ranch she left eight years ago, where she spent and best and worst times of her childhood. Now Rose had to contend with using her rusty healing abilities to help a wounded, angry donkey and deal with the sexy shapeshifter cowboy who broke her heart.
Finn’s wolf did the unthinkable eight years ago – attacked the girl he loved. Then years later she’d unknowingly saved his wolf, and him. Now he has two weeks to convince Rose that the bite which drove them apart also binds them together. Because letting her go this time might not be possible.
If he let her go now nothing would stop her from leaving him. Forever. His wolf whined, a high-pitched, mournful sound.
No. If Rose thought she’d be happier without him, he would stand aside and let her walk away. Her safety and happiness were all that mattered. But he couldn’t let her stumble away, raw and hurting and believing he’d ever hated her.
Murmuring soft words in her hair like she was a scared filly at the crossroads of trusting or bolting, Finn held her. He wasn’t sure how long they remained locked together, swaying gently back and forth. Inch by inch her body relaxed until her arms crept around his waist and she sighed against his neck. The soft, contented noise she made was a gift so tender and precious that it stole his breath. Too soon she untangled herself and scrubbed her face.
Anna Kyle spent her youth reading about and dreaming of horses and scheming (unsuccessfully) how to convince her parents to get her one. That led to writing her first story about a girl and her horse which in turn led to a lifetime love of writing. As an adult she reads everything from histories to mysteries but romances are definitely her favorite. These days she writes the paranormal romance series, the Wolf King, at World Weaver Press. SKYE FALLING was published last summer and the origin novel, OMEGA RISING, will be out late spring 2016.
Jump Without Looking
by TJ Dodd
Jackie has a veterinary practice, her family’s ranch, and a habit of avoiding men. The last thing she needs is a giant, blonde cowboy who tears down her fence and rattles her nerves. Russ has no job, a beat-up old pickup, and a rundown ranch he just inherited. He needs everything except the beautiful, angry neighbor who turns him on and then runs him off. Can one pregnant cow, two horses that love to jump, and three long kisses prove them both wrong?
Not that his thoughts were angelic. In fact, they’d send him straight in the other direction. Jackie O’Neill was exactly the kind of woman who turned him on: spirited, strong, and sturdy. She was more of that kind of woman than anyone he’d met, so much so that she may have just become his definition of that kind of woman.
He wondered if she felt what he did, something like two magnets pulling them together. He wondered if her skin was as soft as it looked, and if it would dimple between his fingers when he held her thighs and kissed her full round breasts. They wouldn’t bruise each other, that was for damn sure. He’d fit right into her cushioned body.
Sitting next to her was a gift.
TJ Dodd is a frequently sweary, occasionally inappropriate former teacher and acknowledged black sheep of her family. She’s okay with that. She shares her home with her pit bull named Piddles, who outgrew the habit but got stuck with the name. She’s made up stories her whole life and thought it might be fun to try to get some of them published. So far it has been.