Guest blog at Women & Words

Women & Words

I’m guest blogging at Women & Words, talking about At the Water’s Edge, dealing with depression, and no longer being ashamed. (And also giving away a copy of the book!)

Additionally someone at Ladylit (must have been my wife) interviewed me about At the Water’s Edge. (I told her not to ask me such difficult questions next time.) ;-)

Have a lovely weekend,

Harper xo

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About (signed) paperbacks

At the Water's EdgeJust a quick word on the paperback version of At the Water’s Edge. I’ve been getting some requests for signed copies, and these are available. I’ll break it down per region below.

You may also like to know that:

– I’m currently giving away a signed paperback on Goodreads (the giveaway ends in 3 days!)

– When you buy the paperback on Amazon you get the Kindle version for free. (Ideal for Christmas gifts, give the paperback, keep the e-book!) ;-)

So, here are the details. Paperbacks are $13.99 + shipping. (If you don’t want a signed copy, you’re better off buying one from Amazon because they frequently discount.) When ordering from me, do keep in mind that I’m sending books from Hong Kong and it may take up to 3 weeks for your book to arrive in Europe or the US. I will also send you the e-book version when you buy a paperback directly from me.

Here’s how much it will cost per region:

US
$13.99 + $5.5 (shipping) = $19.49

UK
£9 + £4.5 (shipping) = £13.5

EUROPE (outside of UK)
€11 + €4 (shipping) = €15

If you live anywhere else, it will probably cost about the same in your local currency. E-mail me and we’ll work it out.

To summarize:
If you want a signed copy of At the Water’s Edge (along with a free e-book), e-mail me (harperbliss at gmail dot com) with your postal address and the name of the person you want it signed for (and/or any message you’d like to be included). Payments will need to be made using PayPal.

That’s it. Thank you!

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NEW RELEASE: At the Water’s Edge

At the Water's EdgeIf you’ve read any of my books, you may know that I’m inclined to some hyperbole and am not averse to high drama (on the contrary), so, what I’m about to say may come across as a bit of an exaggerated statement (because it’s coming from me.) ;-) But, here it is, anyway: writing this book has changed my life.

At the Water’s Edge is fiction. It’s a made-up story of a broken women going home to find some peace and, mainly, to heal. It’s the story of Ella Goodman, who suffers from depression. Ella’s story is not my story, but nevertheless, I too have battled depression.

I’ve talked about this book before, saying that it has a much more ‘serious’ theme than my other works. This book is the reason why I no longer label myself as a lesbian erotica writer, but a lesbian fiction one. Writing At the Water’s Edge was hard. I cried so much, Kleenex probably had to re-stock the supermarket across the street twice as many times as usual.

I cried until it all broke open for me and I said to my wife, “I think I may have just written an important book.” Important for myself, and, I hope, for anyone else who has, very nearly, succumbed to feelings of despair.

I remember when I first had the idea. I actually remember to the day, because I posted a Facebook status about it. It was on 19 February, now nine months ago, when I was deep into writing the first season of French Kissing. And, cliché as it may sound, while listening to R.E.M.’s Automatic for the People, it was the song Everybody Hurts that triggered the emotion. I literally burst out into tears while walking down the street. Because I remembered something I’d been trying to forget for years.

Screen Shot 2014-11-13 at 3.42.21 pm

If, like me, you’ve listened to this particular album a million times, the title of my book may not be unfamiliar either. At the Water’s Edge comes from a song lyric in Nightswimming. I knew I wanted a lake to feature in it, and late night swimming, and the atmosphere of late summer turning into autumn.

That’s how At the Water’s Edge was born. But I had to wait until I’d finished writing a whole lot more words of French Kissing to begin. So the story had time to grow in the back of my brain, percolate, and then, when the time came, I wrote the first draft in seven weeks. It just poured out. Because the story needed to be told. I needed to write these sentences that dealt with depression and suicide attempts and guilt and (oh so much) shame.

And now, here it is. As I said before, this book is not erotica. This doesn’t mean there are no hot scenes (I can’t help myself), but if you’re looking to get aroused, this is probably not the book you want to read. ;-) That being said, this book is not a massive tearjerker either. It contains a clear message of hope, redemption, forgiveness and love. It’s also as close to baring my soul on the page as I have ever come.

Like Ella, I have gone through a journey, and have come out on the other side. Writing this book was my journey. I wrote the shame off me and for that, I’m so so proud of it.

Special thanks to my wife (as always) (also for designing the perfect cover for this book!), to Cheyenne Blue who did a stellar job editing (and named me the Queen of Redundancies), and to my beta-reader Maria, with whom I discussed this book at length, and who has become such a close friend in the process.

A while ago I said on Facebook that I may or may not record myself reading the first chapter from At the Water’s Edge. I then decided that just reading from the book might be a bit boring and not adding a lot of value. So, I’ve decided to do something else instead to celebrate the release. Ask me any question (within the boundaries of common decency!) and I’ll record myself replying to it. You can ask your question in the comments, on Twitter, on Facebook, or via e-mail at harperbliss at gmail dot com.

Here’s the blurb:
After a traumatic event that has left her in deep need of healing, Ella Goodman returns to her hometown in Oregon. While staying at her family’s cabin at the West Waters lake resort, she finds an unexpected friend in level-headed owner Kay Brody. But Ella’s sole objective is to restore the broken ties with her family, and she has no time for distractions like falling in love. The healing process is confrontational and difficult though, and she is soon forced to realize that people like Kay only come along once in a lifetime.

And you can get it here:
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon DE
Amazon CA
Amazon AUS

Add it to your Goodreads shelf >>

Enjoy!

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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Want more FREE stories? Download French Kissing: Episode One, Fool for Love (High Rise Novella One), Wetter, All of Me and New Girl

NEW RELEASE: Cougars

CougarsSeveral things happened since I first had the idea for this mini-anthology. First, I wrote my own story ‘Reunion Tour’ (excerpt below) in record time and immediately considered it my new favourite (amongst my own short stories.)

Then, I fell in love with the model on the cover, and used the image of the gorgeous woman as inspiration for a character in my novelette Piano Lessons (to be released in January.)

Around that time, cougars started to take over my life and I became obsessed with them on Facebook. And all of that was before I read the other authors’ (as usual: Erzabet Bishop, Laila Blake, Cheyenne Blue and Lucy Felthouse) contributions. Needless to say, after reading those, my cougar love reached even greater heights. I haven’t recovered yet. ;-)

This brand new mini-anthology is out now. I believe I just made clear how much I love it. (I think we’ll need to do a sequel.)

Here’s the blurb:
Mature women are on the prowl in ‘Cougars’, Ladylit’s new collection of lusty lesbian tales in which older ladies seduce younger ones… or the other way around. An ageing rock star has it bad for the singer of the latest hit band in Harper Bliss’s ‘Reunion Tour’. In Cheyenne Blue’s ‘Gorgon and Goat’ cheese plays its part in bringing two women together, while in Laila Blake’s ‘The Girl Next Door’ it’s a blackout in an apartment building that does the trick. Erzabet Bishop and Lucy Felthouse bring their usual light-heartedness to their stories of, respectively, an older airplane passenger in first class who has a young flight attendant all to herself, and a girl walking her dog who needs to return a stray pup she encounters on her path. ‘Cougars’ contains five mature tales of lesbian desire, in which gray strands of hair are a turn-on, and age and experience are celebrated, not ignored.

Caution: This title contains graphic language and mature f/f sex and is suitable for adults only.

Table of contents
Reunion Tour by Harper Bliss
Gorgon and Goat by Cheyenne Blue
Bali High by Erzabet Bishop
The Girl Next Door by Laila Blake
Returning Riley by Lucy Felthouse

You can get ‘Cougars’ from Amazon:
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
Amazon DE
Amazon AUS

Add it to your GoodReads shelf >>

And here’s an excerpt from my story ‘Reunion Tour’.

You’re a cocky little thing up there. The way you wriggle your ass—I can’t wait to stripe it with my belt. I watch you from the side of the stage. If this were a festival in Europe, my band would be headlining, but here in our home country, yours gets the number one spot. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t smart a little. I may have to take that out on you as well. It’s a win-win, really, the way you bat your lashes—your head twisted up to me—when my hand comes down on your flesh, always defying me to give more. And, when it comes to you, I never fail to have more to give.

You shimmy to the edge of the stage, lifting your arms high above your head, giving your fans—and me—a glimpse of your pale, taut belly and the little silver ring driven into the delicate skin above your belly-button.

“No one will know what it means,” I said when I arranged for Lisa to administer the piercing. “Only the two of us.” Now, every time you flash it, every single time you bare this glittering symbol of whatever we have between us for the world to see, something pierces me, too. A wave of something I don’t wish to define washes over me. I’m old enough to recognize it instantly, but still foolish enough to deny it.

Because you drive me crazy, make me feel things I haven’t felt in years. Not even taking the stage again, after a nine year hiatus, flanked by Tommy and Matthew and Sam, my brothers in arms since 1981, affected me in the same way as the first time I saw that glint in your eyes. All it took was one glance, and I knew.

You flick your head to the right, momentarily pinning your eyes on me, and the whole motion thunders through me, leaves my panties drenched. Speaking of, you’re wearing a pair of mine underneath those leather trousers—the ones that hug your ass so sublimely I need to catch my breath every time you present your back to me on the stage.

“Please allow me to present to you the next big thing,” my manager said. “The Harriettes.” You were obviously their leader, the way you hung back a bit—the way I learned to do all those years ago—to allow the others to shine during moments of lesser importance, like being introduced to a band long past its prime.

“Oh my god,” your bass player giggled. “We are such huge fans. You are our biggest inspiration.” It sounded a bit rehearsed, what with her not even being born yet the year we broke through. You appeared smarter, more composed, shrouded in that cool sort of silence that no one can take issue with.

When we shook hands, though, I detected the slightest hint of sweat on your palm, and when you met my gaze, I knew. I’m old enough to know.

You take your first of many faux-modest bows. After five months on the road, I know your routine by heart. I can only imagine the adrenalin coursing through your blood right now. Not that it doesn’t still happen to me, but the years have taken away the highest highs. I’ve learned to put it all into perspective more, to see the long-run—the end game. But I hope you’re enjoying this moment, because it truly is glorious. Unencumbered by self-consciousness, lifted up by the incessant roar of the thousands of people in front of you, that one moment you sang and strutted your ass off for the past forty-five minutes. The higher your high, the more you’ll want me after.

Yes, I ♥ Cougars! I hope you do too.

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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Coming Out All Over Again

me_HBIf you don’t follow me on Facebook you may have missed that I stopped hiding behind that hot cleavage stock pic I’ve been using as my profile picture since I released the first Harper Bliss story two and a half years ago.

I did this because of my upcoming novel At the Water’s Edge, which has a (serious) theme that simply doesn’t go with an author having cleavage as a profile pic.

I have a feeling that once At the Water’s Edge is released I might be coming out about something else as well, but let’s take it one step at the time.

Here I am. This is me (on a good day). No shame. ;-)

If you don’t subscribe to my newsletter, you may also have missed that I shared the first chapter of At the Water’s Edge. It’s the almost final version (just needs one more proof-read). Here it is >>

At the Water’s Edge will be released in two weeks’ time, and you can already add it to your Goodreads shelf >>

Oh, and the proof copies just arrived today.

AtWEYou can’t really tell from the picture, but one is matte and the other is glossy.
We’re going with matte.

P.S. Thank you everyone who helped get A Higher Education to #1 on Amazon’s Lesbian Romance Best Sellers list. Very, very much appreciated! xo

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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NEW RELEASE: A Higher Education

A Higher EducationDidn’t I say the autumn of 2014 would be hella hot? ;-) Here I am with another brand new novelette. A Higher Education, which, while writing, I dubbed ‘my professor novelette’, is about two professors meeting at a conference. Not just any two professors, of course, as the narrator used to be a student of the other one. Yep: cougar alert! Throw in a former teacher crush, a shared bedroom, and some trees (you’ll see), and you have A Higher Education.

Here’s the blurb:
At an economics conference Gail Garvey ends up sharing a room with a teacher she had a crush on twenty years ago. They’re both professors now, and Gail’s crush has long faded, but finding herself in the same room as Professor Joanne Ferguson two nights in a row proves to be more challenging than Gail would like to believe.

A Higher Education is only available from Amazon for now:
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
Amazon DE
Amazon AUS

Add it to your GoodReads shelf >>

Enjoy!

P.S. Speaking of cougars, in the lead-up to next week’s release of Ladylit’s Cougars mini-anthology, I’m posting daily celebrity cougar pictures on my Facebook page. Do stop by. It’s so much fun!

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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Girls in Love by Laila Blake

Girls in LoveThe first time I read a Laila Blake story was when I was going through submissions for Anything She Wants. Obviously, Laila’s story ‘The Corner Chair’ made it into the anthology effortlessly. I was instantly captivated by her poetic prose and thoroughly impressed by the sheer talent she displayed, even in a story of a mere 4000 words.

I’ve worked with Laila many times since then, and she has never failed to produce work of the highest standard. Every time I have the pleasure of reading a brand new Laila Blake story, it’s such a joy, and I remain as impressed as ever, often shaking my head in disbelief and muttering to my wife, “Damn, she’s so good.”

Today, I’m extremely chuffed to present to you Laila’s first mini-anthology Girls in Love, published by Ladylit. It contains five delicious, gorgeously written lesbian erotica tales, nicely bundled together for your reading pleasure.

Here’s the blurb
Childhood friends turn lovers in a snowy cabin, a student seduces her teacher in her own class room, and together two women overcome the prejudice of her family once and for all. These five lesbian erotica stories by Laila Blake are about laughter, kink and above all: about Girls in Love.

Table of contents
Bird of the Summer (*)
House-Broken
Midnight Clear (*)
Doll-faced Demons
The Corner Chair (*)

(*) These stories have previously appeared in Ladylit books.

And it’s available from these retailers
buy
Direct from Ladylit
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
Amazon DE
Amazon AUS
All Romance
Smashwords
Kobo
iTunes US
iTunes UK

You can add Girls in Love to your Goodreads shelf here >>

Happy weekend!

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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NEW RELEASE: As Years Go By

As Years Go ByI haven’t had a standalone novelette release in ages, so I’m very excited. (I have two more in the pipeline) (and a novel) (the autumn of 2014 will be so hot!)

My wife gave me the idea for this one. She said, “How about two women who used to be in a relationship and haven’t seen each other for a long time?” I said, “Okay.” And then I wrote As Years Go By, which poured out of me in record time, and is (as always) my new favourite. ;-)

Now, you’d best be prepared for this one, as I take it a bit further than I usually do, both on an emotional and a physical level. The two main characters Jodie and Leigh used to have an extremely passionate relationship, and they’re both equally keen and wary to re-visit the past. There’s a hotel room, curtainless full-length windows, a leather belt (I seem to be going through a phase), and a lot of processing going on in As Years Go By, and you should definitely not read it on public transport or (!) at work. Just giving you a fair warning. ;-)

Here’s the blurb
At her son’s graduation ceremony, Jodie unexpectedly runs into her ex-partner Leigh. Because of how painfully it ended between them, Jodie is taken aback at first, but gradually allows Leigh to draw her back in—just like she used to—and shock soon makes way for memories of the intense desire they once shared.

And you can get it from these retailers
buy
Direct from author
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon DE
Amazon CA
Smashwords
All Romance
Kobo
iTunes

Add it to your GoodReads shelf >>

Enjoy!

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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Want more FREE stories? Download French Kissing: Episode One, Fool for Love (High Rise Novella One), Wetter, All of Me and New Girl

Blue Woman Stories Volume 1 by Cheyenne Blue

Blue Woman Stories Volume 1 I have a stack of lesbian erotica anthologies in print that (for some reason, ha ha) made the move with us from Belgium to Hong Kong. Most of these contain a story by Cheyenne Blue. There are authors whose style enchants me, who can put so much in a story by using so little words. Cheyenne is one of those authors. In fact, it was after reading another one of her beautiful stories (“I Wish I Knew You” in Girl Fever) that I contacted her, asking if, by any chance, she’d be interested in working with Ladylit because it was our dream to work with accomplished, excellent erotica writers like her. That was two years ago.

Today, I can’t begin to tell you how proud I am to have been working with Cheyenne for a while now. She edited Forbidden Fruit for us, is a regular contributor to the themed mini-anthologies I put together for Ladylit, is currently editing my novel At the Water’s Edge, and we’ve just released her first short story collection Blue Woman Stories Volume 1.

Cheyenne has many, many, many lesbian erotica short stories out there, and Ladylit has the extreme privilege of collecting them. The ‘Volume 1′ in the title is there for a reason, as many more of these will follow.

Some of you will have read a few of Cheyenne’s stories, if not in a Best Lesbian Erotica edition, then perhaps in one of the mini-anthologies or in Forbidden Fruit. If so, I don’t need to tell you how fantastic they are. If not, well, here’s your chance for a crash course in the brilliance of Cheyenne Blue’s writing! ;-)

But, perhaps, you need a bit more convincing, so let me try: the characters in the 5 stories in Blue Woman Stories Volume 1 are real in the sense that they’re not ‘accidental lesbians’ (meaning they meet and think ‘oh hey, why not’ and drop their panties) (god, I hate stories like that). Cheyenne’s language is tight and poetic, rhythmic and arousing, and (my personal favourite) able to rouse strong emotions.

I, for one, have never been disappointed by one of her stories (and I’m slowly trying to convince her to write something longer for Ladylit), but hey, I know, I’m a fan girl. (But wait until you read her contribution to the upcoming Cougars mini-anthology. The wife and I were both chuckling at it from the start, until it got too hot, then we stopped laughing. You’ll soon be fan-girling with me!)

Okay, you get it, I love Cheyenne Blue. I can only hope you derive the same sort of enjoyment from reading her stories than I do. I’m proud, and honoured and totally chuffed to have had a hand in publishing this collection, and I hope you will give it a chance.

Here’s the blurb
A long-time couple weave a fantasy of seducing a straight woman, old friends become lovers in the French countryside, and a cop sent to investigate a suspected dope grower finds more than she expects in a tropical garden. Cheyenne Blue’s lesbian erotica has been a staple of many anthologies since 2000. Blue Woman Stories Volume 1 collects together for the first time five of her best-loved stories.

Table of contents
What If?
A Tangle of Vines
Car Bomb
How Does Your Garden Grow?
Cully’s Run

And it’s available from these retailers
buy
Direct from Ladylit
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
Amazon DE
Amazon AUS
All Romance
Smashwords

You can add Blue Woman Stories Volume 1 to your Goodreads shelf here >>

Enjoy!

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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Want more FREE stories? Download French Kissing: Episode One, Fool for Love (High Rise Novella One), Wetter, All of Me and New Girl

‘Girls Only: The Collection’ is (finally) available from Amazon again

Girls Only: The CollectionMy short story collection Girls Only: The Collection was banned (*) from Amazon for more than 4 months, but, at last, it’s back. Meanwhile, this title is also available in print, but I never bothered to promote it as long as the e-book version wasn’t available.

This ten stories anthology bundles all the short stories I have the rights to and were published before November 2013. Here’s a reminder of what you can find inside the hot pages (e-ink as well as real paper) of this book:

– Alphas (from Anything She Wants)
– Personal Training (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume Two))
– New Girl (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume One) and Coming Together: Girl on Girl)
– Champagne (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume Two))
– Match Point (from Sweat)
– Bar Service (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume Two))
– Wetter (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume One))
– Fair and Square (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume Two))
– All of Me (standalone short story and appeared in Girls Only (Volume One))
– The Client (standalone short story previously published under the pen name Sadie Spiller)

So, to celebrate the re-availability of this book on Amazon and the fact that it’s also available in print, let’s have a double giveaway! One on here for a lucky commenter (do drop me a note, I’ll send it to anywhere in the world) and one on Goodreads! (Both giveaways will end on October 4th.)

Meanwhile, you can get these 10 stories for $3.99 only (that’s less than 40 cents each per story!) from the following retailers:

Available as e-book from
buy
Direct from author
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon DE
Amazon CA
Smashwords
All Romance
Kobo
iTunes

Add it to your Goodreads shelf >>

Available as paperback from
Amazon US
Amazon UK
The Book Depository (Free shipping worldwide!)
Barnes & Noble

(*) I don’t think it was banned for lewdness, it’s probably more complicated and (at the same time) silly than that.

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Latest releases: At the Water's Edge, Cougars and A Higher Education
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Want Hired Help for FREE? Subscribe to my mailing list >>
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Want more FREE stories? Download French Kissing: Episode One, Fool for Love (High Rise Novella One), Wetter, All of Me and New Girl

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