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Guest Post–O Dear…There’s A Woman in My M/M story

I’d like to welcome R.A. Padmos to the blog today. I met R.A. in the Totally Bound author FB group. I’m so intrigued to read The Bookshop and Unspoken. Leave a comment to win a chance to win one of R.A.’s books!

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Unspoken is the story of a married man who falls in love with another man. It’s not a very usual theme in more recent m/m and gay romance novels, and neither does it seem to be a very popular one. Most readers, at least from what I see and hear, don’t like a woman being part of the one man is hot, two men are hotter picture.

So why did I choose to write exactly such a story? I can perhaps best call it a challenge to myself to write a historical novel with some absolute rules. I wanted to write a story about a Dutch working class man living in times of economic crises followed by five years of German occupation. It had to be an honest story, even if that honesty would cost me a few readers.

I had to face the fact that in those days, a man who could pass as straight, would likely make the choice to get married and start a family. He might not even recognise his own feelings, until lighting hit him and there was no longer a realistic way of denying the truth. But what to do with his wife and their four children? The most popular choice would be to let her die during the delivery of the youngest baby, which would give us a ready-made two-daddy family long before that concept became popular. Or I could write her as an unpleasant character, standing between our heroes and their love. If she would be nasty enough, who would blame a man for leaving his wife for the man who turned out to be the love of his life?

That, however, would be lazy writing. Above all, I hate portraying a female character as a bitch simply because she stands between two men and their true romance. So I ended up with a story of a man who falls deeply in love with another man and expresses his feelings in as many ways as possible. It’s also the story of a man married to a loyal sweetheart of a woman with whom he shares the responsibility getting a family through hard times.

Often enough that’s how things were back then, whether we, modern readers and writers of m/m and gay romance, want it in our stories or not. I know I had to take a deep breath to write Unspoken.

I’m happy I did.

Now it’s up to the readers…

unspoken_800

What’s it about?

When Stefan meets Adri, it is love at first sight. It does, however, take some time before he recognizes his own feelings. He’s a married man—a family man—with a strong sense of responsibility. In Dutch society of 1935, sex between men over the age of twenty-one might be legal, but acceptance is still a long way off.

As a working-class man without a steady job, he doesn’t have the means to ignore society’s rules and create his own little paradise in which both he and his lover can be together, without his family having to suffer poverty and shame. Despite all this, the lovers find a way to carve out moments of intimacy and happiness.

Then the Germans march into Holland and nothing will ever be the same again. The occupation, which will last five long years, offers both danger and chances, but choices have to be made—choices of the head and choices of the heart.

Readers might be interested to know that Stefan, Adri and others also play a role in The Bookshop, the story of bookseller Jakoba.

 

A small taste?

They ended up on the floor together, with Adri full of impatience undressing Stefan, his eyes wide with delight.

“No one ever looked at me this way.” Stefan wasn’t even nearly ready to accept the other man’s gaze in a matter-of-fact manner. “Maybe it’s something women don’t like to do, only men.”

“What kind of way do you mean?” Adri asked with clearly feigned innocence.

“As if you don’t simply accept that I want you, but want me just as much. Marije—I shouldn’t even talk about this—she’s a sweet woman, but she never does or says anything that even hints that she’s really interested in me as a man. Doesn’t she have the same needs?” Stefan wondered aloud, but hidden there was another, unspoken question. Did I marry her for exactly that reason?

 

unspoken_postcard

 

Where can I buy this book?

Pride Publishing

Amazon US

Amazon UK

 

A few words about me?

In no particular order: woman, writer, in a relationship with my wife since 1981 (though we had to wait until 2001 until we could actually get married), mother of two grown sons, owner of cats (I can pretend, can’t I?), reader and a lot more.

I write in different genres under different names. I’m also S.Dora for my M/M erotica and Ella Laurance for my M/F erotica.

 

Where can you find me?

My blog

My Facebook

Twitter

Care for a free book?

Anyone giving a reaction to this post between now and Wednesday has a chance of winning one of my books. Winner’s choice. I do need an e-mail address for obvious reasons.

5 Responses

  1. Interesting…hopefully the wife gets her HEA too.

  2. I like that you didn’t make Marjie a bitch or kill her off. That creates more conflict for Stefan, but allows for him to be a complex person. toastmasterkatherine(at)gmail(dot)com

  3. I think it is possible to have a harmonious love triangle, as I recently read about the life of EM Foster and how his lover got married, had a child, but eventually he ended up living with the family in later life and illness, being godparent to their son and becoming firm friends with his lovers wife. It was not easy at first, with Foster feeling rejected and alone and the wife’s annoyance at her husband spending time with Foster, but after he began corresponding with her he became to love her and in turn she accepted him finally and loved him in a motherly way.

    I am happy that you were honest in your writing, as historically many couples (M/M or F/F) during the period detailed in your book faced persecution, punishment and even death. So many used marriage as a cover or secretly lived together, some escaped to the US, or even lived a happy love triangle like EM Foster.

    Thank you for a chance to win one of your books 🙂

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