Thursday, August 8, 2019

Guest Post: Remember Me by Lex Valentine #Giveaway

Diverse Reader welcomes Lex Valentine to the blog today. She's taking a moment to get very personal with all of you. Those who have been in this community, or even in the book world, know the name Lex Valentine. Through ups and downs she's been here. Today she's talking about the rise and fall and hopeful rise again.

Take a look at her books, read her post, get to know her again. She's offer a lovely giveaway so be sure to check it out.

Notoriety isn’t what it used to be. At least for me, it’s not. You see, I’ve been published for a while now. Eleven years to be exact. I’m sure you’re thinking, “Whaaat? Eleven years? But I have no idea who she is!” And you wouldn’t be alone. A lot of people don’t know who I am any longer. I whine about it, but mostly in a sarcastic way. I completely understand why people don’t know me anymore. The face of the MM community has changed a lot and grown over the years.

Back in the day, I used to turn out at least six books a year. I did a lot of promo. I was in a lot of groups and had a social media profile that was super active with tons of followers and friends. And you’re wondering what the hell happened, right?

See, I had this series about a family of dragon shifters and it caught on pretty good with the first two novellas. Then, I decided to write the story of the brother who wasn’t gay but whose mate was male. Fire Season was my first MM novel and it was beta’d by the late Ethan Day, who loved it. Turned out, a lot of people loved it. The Rainbow Awards loved it. Reviewer Jessewave, notoriously picky about books, loved it and put it on her top 10 list for that year. If RWA contests had been more inclusive then, it would have won RWA contests I’m sure. (I was smart enough not to enter a MM book in an RWA contest back then. No sense asking for a big rejection of my chosen genre.) It did make me a PAN author in less than a month at a time when you had to make $1000 on a single title within a specific amount of time in order to make PAN.

Fire Season wasn’t a flash in the pan either. The next book Ride the Lightning, while not MM, was BDSM and very angsty. It won more awards. It got rave reviews. The rest of the series went on to do pretty well also, both MM and MF books. I branched out into other stuff besides the paranormal. I self-published an angst ridden Christmas BDSM story Broken Bonds that did so well for a Christmas Eve release that when the first payment for it came my husband thought there was some kind of accounting error. My PayPal was flush to the tune of $4000. 

So you see, a lot people bought my books. I didn’t get a fat head but I sure got used to the fact people – readers – knew who I was. I did RT and GRL. It was great to meet people I’d only ever spoken to online. Then, stuff happened. I had medical issues. We lost our house. We lost my MIL (which is a long painful story that isn’t just about her dying at the end) and things went to…well, shit. And I lost one of the most important things…my ability to write prolifically. Which is how I fell from being fairly well known into obscurity.

People who follow me on Facebook know all of the above or most of it. Since being homeless, I’ve only managed to put out two or three things, one of which was a short story chosen and edited by Sylvia Day to be in the first ever RWA anthology. I thought it would make the lists but alas, it did not.
Added to my personal issues was a host of publisher troubles. First, Noble Romance and a fight to get my book back from them. Then, being ripped off thousands of dollars by Ellora’s Cave and another fight to get books back. And finally, having two of my publishers close their doors leaving me with almost all of my backlist in my own hands. 

You’d think an author would be done with the publishing world at this point, wouldn’t you? I wanted to be. I still get the urge to quit, but I’ve stuck it out, trying to put my books back out one at a time, recovered, reformatted, and cleaned up. It’s a tiring chore. But it can also be rewarding like when I got a notice that someone who’d never read Kissing Joan Collins had found it to be such a great feel good, friends to lovers story that they had to feature it in their newsletter. 

And here I am. Still here. No longer known. Fallen into obscurity. *eyeroll* Still trying to write and put my backlist out. I have a reader group that has no readers. But I’m not angry about it. I totally understand it. I’m not publishing new material. I’m not promoting my re-releases. I’m not spending hours a day on social media cultivating a following. I am, however, still hanging in there. I haven’t given up on myself yet and I’m still hoping to find new readers out here. I still believe in this industry and the MM reader and writer community despite the gaslighting, catfishing, bookstuffing, and “cockiness” that’s gone on.  

I guess I’m here to invite you to know me. Read me. I’ve got a few books out from my backlist and a few audiobooks. That dragon shifter book? Well, it’s not back out yet, but it will be. I recently had some folks ask me to put it out next so I’m going to try to do that. I don’t do much in my reader group The Lexicon, but that’s probably because I only have like five people in it who don’t even talk. Join up! Make me talk to you! If people are willing to chat with me, I’ll chat back and give away books and audiobook codes and snippets and…stuff! I even have great friends like ZA Maxfield and Tara Lain who I can persuade to come by, but I can’t ask my friends to come to my group if there’s no one there to talk to. And want to talk to you. I want you to know me and my characters and my worlds as I put them back out there. Join my group! I promise to give you something worth reading!
I have an ebook copy of Kissing Joan Collins and Afterburner for Meredith to give away, both with audiobook codes so you can listen as well as read. I hope that you’ll find the books entertaining enough that you’ll check out my other books. Flying in the Face of Convention, my short for the RWA anthology, is free on Kindle Unlimited and 99 cents to buy. Sylvia Day loved it. Maybe you will too if you give it a try! 

Many thanks to Meredith for having me on her blog. I appreciate her willingness to showcase someone hardly anyone knows. ;) And thank you all for reading my guest post!
Rainbow kisses to you all!

Kissing Joan Collins (KU) – Buy Link

Gay suspense author Logan Moore fell in love with the most perfect man ever during his freshman year in college. Unfortunately, that perfect man, his roommate and best friend Chase Courtland, never showed an interest in Logan. Twelve years and a handful of failed relationships later, Logan acknowledges that he still loves Chase. When Chase puts on a designer dress, four-inch heels and a wig, transforming himself into Joan Collins for a Valentine's Day masquerade party, Logan's libido rockets out of control. One look at Chase's perfect ass in the skin tight dress and Logan is ready to drag him off to bed. But can two best friends bridge the gap of a dozen years of denial and build a life together after one amazing night of revelations, confessions and love?

Afterburner (KU) – Buy Link

The specter of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell hovers ominously over the romance between former USAF Thunderbird pilots, Sebastian Marchetti and Ryder Beckett.

Major Sebastian “Babe” Marchetti has spent his life doing two things, hiding his sexuality and flying. At 38, following a stellar career in the Air Force, Bas retires and returns to the Flying Marchettis. However, the demons of his past military career arise when he meets test pilot Lt. Colonel Ryder “Flip” Beckett. Together, Ryder and Bas find a love that neither is willing to give up. Bas loves Ryder enough to be his dirty little secret under “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” But that’s not enough for Ryder who’s willing to risk court martial for the right to love Bas.

Flying in the Face of Convention (free) – Link

Trey Beaumont is cautious, conservative and conventional. As a gay FBI agent, he can't afford to be anything else. That is, until the day the mailman puts a wedding invitation into the wrong mailbox. When Trey finds two wedding invitations in his mail, one addressed to him and the other to his new neighbor, his cautious demeanor is tested. The new neighbor is none other than the man Trey crushed on in college.

Taking the invitation over to Jordan Smithson's condo leads to dinner and the discovery that he and Jordan share a lot more than he ever imagined. Not only is Jordan in law enforcement too as an officer with the Seattle SWAT team, he's also gay. The final shocking discovery is that Jordan had a crush on Trey in college. With their attraction to each other out in the open and sizzling hot even after six years, Jordan asks Trey to step out from behind the conservative front he shows the world and take a chance on them. It's up to Trey to make a leap of faith, accept his attraction to a man he hasn't seen in six years, and fly in the face of convention. If he can, all his dreams could come true.

This is a short story of 7,000 words, written for the RWA anthology Premiere and edited by Sylvia Day. It has the anthology theme of a wrong number. It is a friends to lovers, college crush tale that contains a HEA with no cliff hangers.

An award winning, multi-published, PAN author, Lex was born and raised in Salinas, California, home of the California Rodeo and John Steinbeck. Creative as well as analytical, Lex is a minority in conservative Orange County where she lives with Rott, her long haired, tattooed husband and a bunch of cats she collectively calls Babies. A former IT Geek, Lex works full-time as a bean counter at a 100+ year old cemetery.

Lex has been online in some capacity since 1994 and has never had an AOL email address. The domain she’s owned since 1995 has become her graphics site Winterheart Design where she’s created covers and graphics for authors of various genres. Currently, she’s in the process of re-releasing her backlist since the return of her rights with the closing of several publishers.


1 copy each of Kissing Joan Collins and Afterburner with an audiobook code for each. 
Contest ends August 15th
Thank you

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I like the sound of Kissing Joan Collins. Friends to lovers is one of my favorite tropes.

  2. Great post. Lex writes wonderful stories.

  3. I have seen Lex around for years. I need to check my book lists to see if I have something, if not I need to rectify.

  4. welcome back Lexi and will definitely be reading your books

  5. I've known of Lex for years but haven't read any of her stories yet. Maybe it's time I change that. Thank you for the post and letting us get to know you.

  6. I hope good things are coming your way. And I'll be checking out your books!

  7. Have been a fan for a long time. Especially love the Tales of the Darkworld series.

  8. I need to look into more of Lex's books.