Hello everybody. I’m Marie Sexton, and I’m so happy to be here today. For those who don’t know me, I’ve been writing gay romance since about 2009 (my first novel was published in January 2010). I live in Colorado. I’m a wife, mother, wine lover, and procrastinator extraordinaire. My latest book, Lost Along the Way, was released by Dreamspinner Press on April 15. Lost Along the Way is part of the Tales of the Curious Cookbook anthology, co-written with RJ Scott, Amy Lane, Amber Kell, and Mary Calmes. It’s a fun, sweet little story about learning to let the past go in order to make room for the future (with a bit of help from a mysterious cookbook).
Lots of authors have playlists or soundtracks for their books. For myself, music is hit and miss. Sometimes I have a whole list of songs, sometimes none at all. More often than not I have a single anthem rather than a playlist – one perfect song that captures the feel I’m aiming for – and I listen to it on repeat through the entire writing process. I thought I remembered having an entire list of songs for Lost Along the Way, but when I went looking for it, I was surprised that to find it didn’t actually exist. Somehow, what I found was a hodge-podge playlist of two different stories I worked on in the summer and fall of 2014.
Wait. Let me back up.
I originally started a book called Shotgun back in spring of 2013, but I ran out of gas. The story was giving me problems. My cop kept trying to seduce my schoolteacher, even though that wasn’t the story I wanted to tell. I promised him his own book, but he was damn determined to get Lamar into bed. I also had problems with the backstory, and so eventually, I shelved the whole novel and went on to write other things. A year later, sometime around May or June or July of 2014, I started writing Lost Along the Way, but I must have been using at least part of my Shotgun playlist, although I can’t remember why. I also started rethinking Shotgun around that same time (maybe because of the shared playlist). I eventually separated the songs and the stories. I finished Lost Along the Way in about August, and immediately picked up Shotgun, which I finished in November (it will be released by Dreamspinner Press at the end of May). (And I solved that pesky cop problem by moving the story to Coda. I knew I could trust the cop there to keep his hands to himself.)
Still, even though I know I had separate soundtracks for both Shotgun and Lost Along the Way, when I went looking for them, I only found one strange mash-up of two very different stories. I spent a morning sorting through them, and these are the ones that popped out at me as being exclusively for Lost Along the Way.
Also, a quick disclaimer: given the choice between official videos and live music, I’ll go with live every time. Just FYI. J
- The Trishas, “Raining Inside” – Listening to this now, I remember how far I drifted from my original story concept for Lost Along the Way, and yet the underlying concept remained. The tone of this song is exactly what I was going for in the first half of Daniel’s story. And I’m sure the porch light in one of the early scenes was inspired by this song. https://youtu.be/QMA8sof4H6w
- Jean Rohe & Buzzer 11, “Caught You Running” – This is apparently from a movie soundtrack, although I’ve never seen the movie. I have no idea how this song ended up in my iTunes library, but I fucking love it. It played a lot in my brain in the middle portion of the story, as Daniel is coming to terms with the state of his failed relationship with Chase. (And unfortunately, there just isn’t a good video to be found, but take a listen anyway!) https://youtu.be/cilJDBvuSC8
- Colbie Caillat, “I Never Told You” – I think this really came into play during the turning point of Lost Along the Way, when Danny has finally accepted that he’s crazy about Landon. https://youtu.be/S2w2EyllM8Q
- Tristan Prettyman, “You Got Me” – I love Tristan Prettyman. She has a song on just about every one of my soundtracks, and her song In Bloom was the anthem for Between Sinners and Saints. This time, it was You Got Me that inspired me. It felt like Danny and Landon making a promise. https://youtu.be/CyjUKLxammE
- Pat Benatar, “We Belong” – Probably the one song on my list that every single person has heard. LOL. The original Shotgun soundtrack had a lot of 80s music on it. That changed over time, but this song remained through both Lost Along the Way and Shotgun. No matter what fate has thrown at Daniel over the previous fifteen years to keep him from Landon, he finally accepts that they were meant to be together all along. https://youtu.be/efLT2Ym-XCc
Okay, listening to that list, it probably seems like Lost Along the Way is a darn depressing story, but I promise, that isn’t the case! It’s actually a fun little feel-good tale about finding true love.
So, talk to me, please! Have you heard any of these songs? Love them? Hate them? Can you think of any you’d like to add?
It’s called comfort food for a reason.
Not much is known about the cookbook, except that years ago, the mysterious Granny B collected a set of magical recipes and wrote them down. Over the years, each book has been modified, corrected, added to, and passed down through the generations to accumulate its own unique history. The secrets behind these very special recipes are about to find their way into new hands and new lives, just when they’re needed the most.
Food created out of love casts a spell all its own, but Granny B’s recipes add a little something extra. This curious cookbook holds not only delicious food, but also the secrets of love, trust, and healing, and it’s about to work its magic once again.
Tales of the Curious Cookbook
Genre: gay contemporary romance, with a big of magical realism
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Date of Publication: April 15, 2015
Word Count: 44K
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Three months after losing his parents in a car crash, Denver weatherman Daniel Whitaker returns to Laramie, Wyoming. It’s bad enough dealing with the death of his parents and his failing relationship of fifteen years, but when he finds his childhood home full of clutter, Daniel is at a loss. He enlists Landon, his parents’ sexy neighbor, to help him sort through the mess.
Landon Kushner is a study in contradictions. He builds wind sculptures out of scrap metal and loves the outdoors, but he also rides a mint-green Vespa and has an affinity for knitting and fortune-telling. He’s been friends with Daniel’s parents for years, and he’s more than willing to lend a hand.
Their plan is simple: clean the house so Daniel can sell it and get back to his life in Denver. But when a strange cookbook comes into Landon’s possession, Daniel begins to realize that the universe – and Granny B – may have other plans.
Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.
My website/blog: http://mariesexton.net/
$25 Giftcard to Dreamspinner Press
Paperback copy of Tales of the Curious Cookbook
Paperback copy of Promises
$25 Giftcard to Dreamspinner Press