Blog Tour for Conning Colin by Brad Vance and Elsa Winters
Title: Conning Colin
Author: Brad Vance, Elsa Winters
Publisher: Zirconia Publishing, Inc.
Release Date: 6/2/17
Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex
Length: 60,000 words
Genre: Romance, LGBT
Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35288977-conning-colin
Hamilton Dillon is a high class Manhattan escort, polished, well dressed, and cultured. Colin O’Neill is recently divorced, questioning his sexuality, and disappointed by his first fumbling gay hookups. So he figures, why not hire the best of the best to show him the ropes?
What he doesn’t know is that Hamilton Dillon is really Henry Davis, yet another New Yorker living on the financial edge, cobbling together several jobs to make a living. “Hamilton” has one great suit he can wear on an overnight date, but Henry’s got a good friend at GQ who makes a nice side income renting designer men’s wear for weddings, job interviews, and oh yeah, high end escorts on long weekend assignments. The “top agency” that represents “Hamilton” is really just a smartass lady in India with a Skype account, whose face Henry’s never seen. Oh, and Henry’s also the gruff and very unpolished New York Straight Man “Dillinger,” a solo porn star.
In other words, he’s not at all who Colin thinks he is. Which is just fine, until their relationship gets… complicated.
Colin O’Neill hung up the phone, dizzy with excitement and fear. He’d done it. He’d called the number, talked to the agency, and booked a “date” with Hamilton Dillon.
He’d looked at Hamilton’s Rentmen.com ad a hundred times, at least, over the last three months. He’d looked forward to new profile photos the way a kid keeps an ear cocked for the ice cream truck. Even though all the profile pictures had been beheaded for discretion, it didn’t matter. Hamilton Dillon had a way of posing that expressed more personality with his body than most other guys ever did with their faces.
The way he sat on a park bench in nothing but a pair of running shorts and Nikes, shirtless, manspread, his arms thrown over the back of the bench, his strong graceful neck taut, telling you that the face just out of frame was tilted up towards the Central Park sunshine, that the man was reveling in his easy beauty, the unique joy that comes from being young and hot and free in New York City…
Then the way he floated in the air in those same shorts and Nikes, leaping for a football, the camera capturing him from behind in the moment the ball touched his fingers, the imminence of his success apparent, ordained, the muscles in his back bunched, the mass of his shoulders gathered together, sweat flying off his brown hair, in the seconds before you knew he landed on the lawn, arms curled around the ball, surely to rise in triumph and be slapped on the back by all his equally hot and shirtless buddies…
The way he sat at a café table, in a slim fit navy blue polo shirt, one of his sculpted vascular arms holding open a well-worn copy of The Fortress of Solitude and the other just toying with a cup of espresso as if it was the back of another man’s hand…
Colin often did something that very few men did anymore, which was to masturbate furiously and successfully to a series of still photos. And with no penises in sight, to boot. He’d done it so often over the last three months that he’d stopped donating his old t-shirts, because he needed them for cleanup duty, at least until they became hopelessly stained.
He had been divorced for six months now, amicably, from a wife who’d pretty much always known he was gay but had decided to let him figure it out for himself. Elspeth was a career woman whose need for a husband was seasonal, from the company picnic in July to the company Christmas party in December, with various client dinners in between.
He was twenty seven years old, and had engaged in sexual intercourse with one woman and two men. Intercourse was pretty much the word for it, he thought. It sounded less like passion and more like, well, cars merging on the freeway, and all three partners had been just about that exciting. (Actually less so, since on the freeway there was always the thrilling risk of death at the hands of someone who’d rather kill you than let you merge.)
Then one night, half drunk and inhibitions lowered, he’d thought, Fuck it, let’s hire a professional and see how it feels when it’s done right.
He’d paged through the escort ads on Rentmen, hundreds of them in Manhattan alone. It was mind numbing, the diversity, and it was overwhelming, the number of choices. He knew he didn’t want to visit Master Bob in his safe and private play space, and he knew he didn’t want to party with Anaconda Joe. The ones who caught his eye were, well yeah, the ones who looked… classy. The one thing he knew he didn’t want was to get ripped off.
And he didn’t want it to feel... He didn’t want to feel like he’d got a burger in a fast food drive through. He wanted it to be special, if that was really possible with a paid companion and not just something that happened to teenage boys in Hollywood movies.
But even the upscale-looking ones, well, there was something about them that… He knew it was good business, to offer yourself up as “versatile,” and available for “mild to wild,” but… Well, the more he saw what he didn’t want, the more a picture began to form in his mind of what he did want. He didn’t want someone who looked like an investment banker but whose profile also said, “Hey I look classy but I can drop it if you just want a dirty pig fest and you’ve got the money for it.”
No. He wanted someone who was one thing. Who wasn’t whoever you wanted him to be. But who was what he said he was. Classy, for real. Not “up for anything.”
And then he found Harrison Dillon.
Meet the Author
Brad Vance writes romance stories and novels, including the breakout hits "A Little Too Broken" and "Given the Circumstances." Keep up with Brad at BradVanceAuthor.com, email him at BradVanceAuthor@gmail.com, and friend him on Facebook at facebook.com/brad.vance.10.
AUTHOR QUESTIONS #1
Today we have an interview with Brad Vance, author of Conning Colin. Tell us a little about your current book.
1) Tell us about your book.
I was brought in to write on a premise about a man just coming out of the closet, who’s hired an escort to “teach him the ropes,” so to speak. There are a lot of gayroms where everyone in Manhattan was glamorous and successful, especially the escorts. I wanted to write about escorts I knew personally – who for the most part are just like the rest of us independents in the “gig economy,” cobbling together a living from multiple sources. And since it was a romcom, I fell in love with the idea that my escort, Henry Davis aka Harrison Dillon, was a guy totally unlike the glamorous, sophisticated, smart-suit-wearing guy he “played” in that job. But when he and Colin, his client, start becoming genuinely attracted to each other, the role he’s playing becomes harder to sustain.
2) How difficult was it to get into the main character’s head?
I could really relate to Henry, though I’ve never escorted myself. But I know what it’s like to have to “multitask” to survive – I’d love to write novels full time, the way Henry wants to write screenplays, but I also need to do audiobooks and edit other people’s work to get enough money moving every month! And like Henry my “real life” wardrobe is cargo shorts, t-shirts and sneakers – like Henry, I’d have to borrow a good suit if I ever needed it!
3) Is this book a standalone or do you plan on visiting it again?
It’s always hard to say. I’m much more a fan of HFN now than HEA – it feels more realistic to me, and Henry and Colin have a ways to go before they can call themselves a HEA couple. It’s hard in this genre to do sequels because they either involve jeopardizing a relationship whose success people have already cheered for, or using the MCs from book 1 as ancillaries in book 2 for a new couple. So the answer is maybe!
4) Why did you choose to write M/M stories?
It sort of chose me. I got into writing gay erotica in 2012, back when the money was a golden shower! Then Amazon cracked down on all that, and introduced the “pay per page” royalty system, which broke a lot of us economically. I realized I needed to move into novels if I was going to survive in the genre. I like writing complex characters in challenging relationships, no instalove or easy resolutions. As long as I can keep creating those characters, I’ll keep writing MM.
5) Where do you find your inspiration?
It’s pretty random! I got the inspiration for Given the Circumstances when the bromance between Aaron Rodgers and Ryan Braun broke up over Braun’s PED use. And some Beavis and Butthead voice in my head said, heh heh, what if they were gay lovers? That rang the gong in my head and I thought, god what if they were! One the straight arrow who worked hard despite minimal natural gifts, and the other the one who’d coasted as far as he had on inborn talent… and I had my plot! For Conning Colin I made Colin a voiceover actor, which I already knew about from my audiobook work, and gave Henry the desire to write screenplays from my own ambitions in that department.
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