Friday, May 30, 2014

Me2: The Terror Continues

As part of my wonderful ManLove Queer Erotica Special Sale And Celebration sale, here's a kick-ass review of Me2Enjoy!

M. Christian is known as a writer of erotica, with stories in several spicy anthologies such as Best American Erotica, Best Gay Erotica and Best Lesbian Erotica. This time he´s playing in the sci fi genre with the psychological thriller, Me2. Fear not, however, as Christian has not forgotten to pen some sizzling scenes involving the gay hero.

At first glance, I was sure that this was going to be yet another cheesy addition to the growing number of sci-fi books and films about cloning. What comes to mind is the Sixth Day, a film in which Arnie Schwarzenegger´s character is secretly cloned and battles the people behind his cloning. Similarly, in Me2, the main character discovers that there is someone who is exactly like him, quite possibly a clone, taking over each part of his life. Christian is masterful in describing the Starbucks employee´s transition from bland but satisfied, to a blundering paranoid individual who questions his every move.

These kinds of sci-fi psychological thrillers aren't usually my cup of tea, but Me2 is suited to a much broader audience. I say this because the underlying tale lies not in the main character´s possible cloning by some secret government agency, but goes deep into theories of identity and identity theft. It questions how our identities are formed, especially queer identity. Christian seems to suggest that our identities come down to what we choose to buy, as we collect material possessions to mould our identities based on how we want other people to see us.

Christian also raises the question of the possibility of the Genetic Mirror Theory, which states that each person has a genetic twin. This idea that there could be more than one of us out there raises some hairs along the way, or at least gives you some food for thought!

Me2 is a chilling and gripping novel. At first I really did think it was a bit of overdone genre about cloning, but it turned into something much more philosophical and interesting. Worth a read.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Steve Williams Loves Very Bloody Marys

As part of my wonderful ManLove Queer Erotica Special Sale And Celebration sale, here's a rave review of the book from my pal Steve Williams:

Muse Review:
M. Christian's excellent new gay vampire novel, "The Very Bloody Marys" has winged its way to you courtesy of Renaissance E Books. A tale of an undead San Francisco deputy called Valentino who's about as useful as George Bush with a rubiks cube, and how, once his boss goes missing, his life is about to get a whole lot worse as the weight of tracking down his hateful, demeaning and downright self-confidence shattering employer falls firmly on Valentino's shoulders.

Deftly, M. Christian has created a novel that is, in fact, a coming of age story in a sugary horror coating. Valentino goes through trials, such as confronting three Marys on Vespas, getting attacked by a pissed off Irish Faery called Liam - I kid you not - and having to contend with a chauffer called Mariah - please, God, let Mariah Carey play him in the movie, a zombie in drag, and she could warble all she'd like off camera just as long as, for those few seconds, she shuts the hell up (like her songs though!) - who is less than forthcoming when it comes to information or help of any kind. And so, time after time, Valentino must battle forces he has... well... to say he has no comprehension of wouldn't be quite fair. It's rather like giving an infant a blow torch and not expecting him to roast his little apple cheeks off (I'm suddenly quite hungry. Mutilation, even joking, shouldn't do that to a man).

Needless to say, there's a fair amount of swearing, some getting spanked with chains and a dollop of hard ass domineering, but you'll have to wait and see if Valentino, our underdog (who, in case anybody does want to make a film of this, I think I look quite like; Hollywood, call me) makes it through this ... well, not alive... but... as dead as he was before... I guess.

M. Christian's writing really sparkles here, and his wit is obvious, and never labored. There's a lot to love, amongst characters like a talking cat addicted to cat nip, and a statue of Lincoln that is a wizard's personal butler. There were a few moments of perplexity on my part as I was reading through, but M. Christian does well in keeping you turning the page, and, whilst everything is tied up in the end rather nicely, this isn't forced and feels much better for it. In fact, I felt this one book would make an excellent start to a series, and I know I for one would be reading cover to cover.

There was one issue I had. Oh God, what an issue. I mean, really, Valentino fancying Nicholas Cage... well, I suppose, if you're a walking corpse your taste would change somewhat... but I'll let M. Christian off on that score, because Very Bloody Marys is one of the most entertaining little novels I've read in a good long while, and it does, as they say, exactly what it says on the tin.

4 Muses Out of 5! ***This Weeks Recommended Read.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Setting The Record Straight

As part of my wonderful ManLove Queer Erotica Special Sale And Celebration sale, here's a kick-ass interview with myself and Steve Williams about my book, Me2Enjoy!


Author M. Christian, an established and highly praised writer, talks about his acclaimed works and his career to date, offering aspiring writers his sage advice also.
SW: Can you give us some deatails about your book please?
M.C: The book called Me2, which was totally and completely written by myself, the real and bonafide 'M.Christian' and not written by some person claiming to be the real 'M.Christian'. It is a novel about identity and existence. Although the book has been marketed as a horror story, it also has elements of surrealism, humor, and plenty of social commentary. Similarly, even though the book has a gay male focus I think it would appeal to readers of any orientation, as its message is extremely universal: who are we and are we in control of our lives?
Everyone, gay or straight, likes to think they have a certain uniqueness, but do they really? 'Me2' deals with this by exposing the idea of a copy or fake, a second 'you' that appears apparently out of nowhere and begins not only to take over your life but also becomes a better 'you' than you ever could. How would you react to that? Would you try and quickly change your life, become someone less easily imitated? But then what happens when even this new 'you' is similarly copied -- or is the fraud, your doppleganger, just doing what you're doing ... down to your panicky change of life?
And it gets even worse from there.
SW: For aspiring writers, what would you say were key things they could do to improve their writing?
M.C: Boy, that's a difficult one, mostly because I believe each writer is different, with unique things that do (or don't) work for them. I have no problem advising folks on smut, for instance, because that's writing for a specific genre. But in general:
Don't read about writing and don't take writing classes (except for mine, of course). I've noticed a lot of would-be-writers spend way too much time on theory and little to no time on actual practice. A writer writes, and each time they do they (hopefully) get better. And have fun! If writing is painful then you're not doing it right. Don't try and outdo someone else or become the next Dickens or Kipling, just do things that you like and that you enjoy. Once it gets easier then you can try to push yourself even father but when you're just starting out you need to get comfortable with language, structure, flow, etc.
For God's sake don't dismiss genre fiction. Good work is good work, if it was written for The New Yorker or a Saturday morning cartoon. Learn to recognize good -- and bad -- work and learn from it. If you read something good then learn from what that writer did. If you read something bad then learn what that writer did wrong.
Play games with your own creativity. If you like a TV show then try writing an episode. You don't even have to write it, just imagine the story and the dialogue. If you're watching a movie or reading a book, stop half way through it and finish it yourself -- was your ending better or not? Why was it better or not? The big thing is to have fun!
Don't write thinking about money (there isn't any) or awards (they are like hemorrhoids, every asshole gets one), or fame. Instead just think about the books you love and do something like them -- repay the debt, so to speak.
SW: Do you see gay fiction becoming more mainstream in the future?
M.C: Only if readers buy them. Like with gay issues in our culture, queer books have become more common, but money is what matters (sigh). I think one of the best 'tricks' to further mainstream gay characters and issues is to simply make them part of any book's world or to emphasize similarities and not differences -- create a bridge between so-called 'gay' fiction and every other genre. So, yeah, I think queer books are becoming more mainstream but I think there's still some distance to go -- mainly because readers need to throw down their bucks to keep the genre going. Without money it could slip back into being just a tiny niche.
SW: Finally, do you have any new stories in the works? If so, can you tell us a little bit about them?
M.C: Thanks for asking! I already mentioned that I have two novels coming out very soon: Brushes is a mainstream/romantic/erotica novel about a famous artist and the people who surround him; and Painted Doll is a cyberdelic noir story about a woman on the run from the mob who hides under the identity of a quasi-dominatrix. In the meantime I'm working on a new novel that should be out in another year, having a great time with a wonderful artist adapting one of my stories into a comic book, and wasting way too much time on my writing blog and my fun blog of weird and unusual things.