Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank Mickie B. Ashling for stopping by today.
Title: Enforcing Emory
Author: Mickie B. Ashling
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Catt Ford
Genre: Contemporary, M/M Romance, Romance
Olympic figure skater Emory Lowe falls in lust the moment he lays eyes on his new neighbor, hockey player Nikolai (Nik) Vetrov. On the surface, Nik is a typical badass enforcer, intimidating and dangerous, on and off the ice. The only son of Ukrainian immigrants, Nik has been groomed from childhood to fulfill his father’s dreams of seeing him in the Hockey Hall of Fame. Igor guides his son toward that goal with a controlling—and abusive—hand, steering him clear of anyone who might ruin his chances.
Although Emory is the US National Figure Skating champion, he’s in-your-face gay, and his audacious persona rubs Nik and his family the wrong way. Raised by supportive and loving parents, Emory is Nik’s polar opposite in every way but one—his desire to succeed. Underneath the fluff and glitter beats the heart of a fierce competitor, and this side of Emory’s personality begins to close the distance between the two athletes.
While the attraction was one-sided in the beginning, Nik finds himself responding to Emory’s flirting. Before the incongruous pair have a chance at any sort of relationship, they must survive the pressures of career, separation, and most importantly, Igor’s ruthless homophobia.
What Inspires a Story?
People often ask me how I come up with my stories, and the truth is, that eighty percent just show up in my head. I’m sure life experiences have a lot to do with it (and I have many to draw upon), but you never know when a memory will generate a plot you can work with. The remaining twenty percent are usually inspired by a photo or video I’ve seen online. Taste, Fire Horse, and Enforcing Emory were most definitely inspired by photos.
Several months ago, a good friend sent me a plot bunny accompanied by a video of a young ice skater turned hockey player. I was intrigued and kept clicking on links, which took me far off the mark of the original plot. I ended up watching clips of Johnny Weir, a figure skater I’ve always admired, and my story started to grow. Johnny was fearless early in his career, and I wanted to capture that same intensity in my character Emory.
Then again, there’s inspiration and original characters who have their own way of doing things. Emory turned out to be nothing like Johnny—except for his outrageous outfits. The most exciting part of writing for me is letting the characters take you on their journey with very little prompting, which is what happened in this case. Emory dazzled me with hardly any effort.
My hockey player was much easier to imagine. If you’re a fan of the sport, you’ll recognize the blond, blue-eyed enforcer who owns the rink as soon as his skates touch the ice. Nik’s game face was firmly in place the day he met Emory, and you can almost hear him saying what the fuck as he tries to wrap his head around the pink Nikes and sequined warm up suit.
I’d like to thank the wonderful people who run Prism for hosting my blog tour visit today and allowing me to share my inspiration for this story. I’ve brought another excerpt I hope you’ll enjoy. Don’t forget to throw your name in Rafflecopter for a chance to win a freebie.
The doorbell rang and he put aside the bag of chips, wiped his mouth, and went to see who it could be. Nik was standing there, looking apprehensive as hell.
“Is it all right to come in?” he asked, looking over Emory’s shoulder as if to make sure Tom wasn’t standing there with a shotgun.
“No one’s home, and even if they were, Dad knows you’re coming over.”
“He was okay with it?” Nik asked dubiously.
“He squawked for a bit, then settled down when I told him you were straight and didn’t plan on fucking me on the dining room table.”
“Just kidding,” Emory said with a naughty grin. He took Nik’s hand and pulled him inside and shut the door.
“Did you really say that to your father?”
“No, but I could have,” Emory teased.
“Shit, if I said something like that to my dad, he’d probably knock out all my teeth.”
“That’s slightly over the top, isn’t it?”
“So he’s a big homophobe?”
“Most men from that part of the world are.”
“Yeah, I heard that on the news.”
“He’s no different from the rest of them.”
“I don’t know why the USA is planning on sending an Olympic team over there if they have no respect for human rights.”
“It’s bullshit. Good thing I’m not president.”
Nik smirked. “If you were in charge, all the Olympians would be dressed in pink.”
Emory’s eyebrows shot up. “What’s wrong with pink? It’s very flattering.”
About the Author
Mickie B. Ashling is the alter-ego of a multifaceted woman raised by a single mother who preferred reading over other forms of entertainment. She found a kindred spirit in her oldest child and encouraged her with a steady supply of dog-eared paperbacks. Romance was the preferred genre, and historical romances topped her favorites list.
By the time Mickie discovered her own talent for writing, real life had intruded, and the business of earning a living and raising four sons took priority. With the advent of e-publishing and the inevitable emptying nest, dreams were resurrected, and the storyteller was reborn.
She stumbled into the world of men who love men in 2002 and continues to draw inspiration from their ongoing struggle to find equality and happiness in this oftentimes skewed and intolerant world. Her award-winning novels have been called “gut wrenching, daring, and thought provoking.” She admits to being an angst queen and making her men work damn hard for their happy endings.
Mickie loves to travel and has lived in the Philippines, Spain, and the Middle East but currently resides in a suburb outside Chicago.
Connect with Mickie
May 25 – The Novel Approach
May 25 – Garrett Leigh
May 26 – Charlie Cochet
May 27 – Emotion in Motion
May 28 – BA Tortuga
May 29 – On Top Down Under Book Reviews
May 31 – Diverse Reader
June 1 – Prism Book Alliance
June 2 – Book Reviews & More by Kathy
June 2 – Cup o’ Porn
June 3 – WoW…from The Scarf Princess
June 4 – Love Bytes
June 5 – Divine Magazine
June 8 – MM Good Book Reviews
June 10 – Hearts On Fire
Tour and materials organized by PAS Promotions
Using Rafflecopter below, enter to win one of these prizes (contest open internationally): a $20 Dreamspinner gift certificate, one of five ecopies of Enforcing Emory, or an audio copy of Fire Horse. Must be 18 or older to enter.
a Rafflecopter 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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