J.A. Rock on Take the Long Way Home and EXT. DOLLHOUSE – DAY ~ Blog Tour, Guest Blog, Local Giveaway

Prism Book Alliance would like to thank J.A. Rock for taking the time to talk with us today.


Title: Take the Long Way Home
Author: J.A. Rock
Publisher: Loose Id
Cover Artist: Dar Albert
Publication Date:01/20/2015
Genre/Sub-Genre: Contemporary, Gay, M/M Romance, New Adult


Dresden Marich has failed out of high school three months shy of graduation. He’s infatuated with his online friend, Evan, alienated from his family and former classmates, and still trying to recover from his father’s death six years ago. He’s also keeping a troubling secret about his older brother, Gunner, who is away at boot camp.

Then Dresden meets Caleb, a judgmental environmentalist who’s hardly Dresden’s fantasy come true. But Caleb seems to understand Dresden’s desire for rough sex, big feelings, and, ultimately, safety. As Dresden becomes embroiled in a farmers market drama involving Caleb, a couple of bullying tomato enthusiasts, and a gang of vigilante vegans, he discovers he might be willing to trade a fantasy relationship with Evan for a shot at something real with Caleb.

But Dresden fears telling quick-to-judge Caleb his secret, and the news that Gunner is coming home sends him fleeing to California for a chance to meet Evan in person and hopefully fall in love. When the encounter doesn’t go as expected, Dresden faces a choice: stay in California and carve out a new life, or take the long road home to his family, Caleb, and a past he must face if he has any hope for a future.

Hi! I’m J.A. Rock, and I’m so happy to be visiting Prism Book Alliance today to talk a little about TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME, which is now available from Loose Id. TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME is about growing up. And screwing up. And family. And…farmers markets. And low level kidnapping fetishes. It’s about a lot of things, but I think mostly it’s about searching for connections with people. So I’m talking today about dollhouses and a time I connected with a younger version of myself–and it turned out she knew more than I did.


In TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME, Dresden and his little sister, Kate, spend a couple of scenes playing with Kate’s dollhouse. Except nine-year-old Kate isn’t interested in having her dolls cook meals or anything like that. She pretends her dolls are part of the mafia, and that the house is where they meet to plan hits.


My sister had a beautiful dollhouse when we were growing up. We never played mafia dolls, but my best friend Becky and I used to make films all the time, and we’d always ask to borrow the dollhouse for exterior shots, since the front looked so much like a real house.

The dollhouse made appearances in TAPSHOES, a horror flick about a serial killer who just wanted to dance; THE PURITAN AND THE WITCH, an abstract film involving a laser tag gun-toting puritan named Charity Danish and the curse laid upon her home by a manic witch; an unnamed project in which I played a perpetually drunk Donatella Versace in a codependent relationship with her cat, Caesar (played by Becky’s cat, Caesar, who quit the acting biz immediately thereafter). And perhaps most notably, a film called THE LAMPPOST

Becky and I made THE LAMPPOST when we were 12. It was about two girls, Kate and JC, who shared an apartment, butted heads with their evil landlady, Mrs. Fong, and dated Ross and Chandler from FRIENDS.

It was very deep.

I mostly forgot about THE LAMPPOST as I got older, but a couple of years ago, Becky found the VHS tape and suggested we watch it together. So we did. And what I had not remembered about the story was that my character, Kate, decides in the middle (in a very angsty scene full of tears and awkward 90’s hair) that she’s going to break up with her boyfriend, Chandler…because she’s attracted to girls.

Seriously did not remember that being part of the story AT ALL. I turned to Becky and said, “Oh my God. That’s like what ended up happening in real life. Except I wasn’t dating Chandler.”

Now, I don’t mean to read too much into THE LAMPPOST, which despite its revolutionary script, Oscar-worthy performances, inscrutable title, and gorgeous exterior shots of the MCs’ house, never really reached AVATAR levels of popularity. But it just struck me as funny that this was the arc I’d given my character at age 12, and that several years later, I actually would realize I liked girls.

My story was always that I hadn’t known I was bi until, at age 21, I suddenly looked at Shakira with new eyes. But hey, maybe I knew long before that. Maybe THE LAMPPOST is deeper than I thought.

Probably not.

But against my better judgment, I kept the tape instead of burning it.

About the Author:

J.A. Rock has worked as a dog groomer, knife seller, haunted house zombie, standardized patient, census taker, state fair quilt hanger, and, for one less-than-magical evening, a server—and would much rather be writing about those jobs than doing them. J.A. lives in Chicago but still sees West Virginia behind Illinois’s back.

Author Links:


Tour Stops:

Jan 19th:

Boys in Our Books

Jan 20th:

The Novel Approach

Sinfully Sexy Reviews

Joyfully Jay

Jan 21st:

Prism Book Alliance

Jan 22nd:

On Top Down Under

Jan 28th AND 30th:

Cup O’ Porn

Buy Links:

Loose Id


J.A. Rock has kindly offered a backlist title for one lucky commenter

Locally held contests will end 7 days from original posting date at 8pm CST. Must be 18 or older to enter, void where prohibited.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

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Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews.  The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.

28 thoughts on “J.A. Rock on Take the Long Way Home and EXT. DOLLHOUSE – DAY ~ Blog Tour, Guest Blog, Local Giveaway

  1. Mafia dolls – I love it. And your childhood movies sound quite, um, interesting and revelatory. Thanks for the great post!

    jen.f {at} mac {dot} com

  2. Clearly Kate has watched too many Mafia shows/movies. I love it, though; such a difference from the usual tea party. And loved the Friends reference. That show kept me entertained through much of childhood.

    Waxapplelover (at) gmail (dot) com

  3. Your childhood movie making sounds amazing! I hope you keep the tape(s) forever they certainly sound like something you’ll want to revisit even if you’re not feeling that way right now.

    • God, the hairstyles and the acting are so humiliating! But also hilarious. I have such good memories of my amateur filmmaking days, and will definitely keep the tapes. 🙂

  4. How cool to still have those tapes. Sounds like you had a very fun childhood. 🙂 My parents actually bought me a playhouse when I was young. It had windows, a roof with real shingles, a front porch with a light. Would spend the night in it sometimes. It was really neat, but sadly there were no movies made. Just lots of pretending with my friends about our imaginary boyfriends…lol. 🙂

    • Oh, how fun! The front porch light sounds like an especially great detail. 🙂 I don’t think I’ve grown up much–if I was given a playhouse today, I’d definitely play in it!

  5. As if. I could not. Love you. Anymore. Ha!! 😀
    I looooooove that you still have the tape.

    For my friends and me, it was the guys in Duran Duran:

    “Becky and I made THE LAMPPOST when we were 12. It was about two girls, Kate and JC, who shared an apartment, butted heads with their evil landlady, Mrs. Fong, and dated Ross and Chandler from FRIENDS.”

    You’re fawesome!!!!!!

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