Thank you for joining me on my blog tour for Priceless, written for Riptide Publishing’s 2012 Rentboy Collection. Hope you enjoy this little peek into what (and who!) inspired the story, and be sure to leave a comment for a chance to win your choice of books from my backlist!
Blame It On the New York Times . . .
I always try to do something different with each new book – be it experimenting with alternating 1st/3rd person points of view, exploring a new setting, or even giving my main characters unusual occupations (such as opera singers or m/m romance writers!). So when Riptide announced their “Love For Sale” submissions call, I thought, “Great idea, but I’ve already written a rent boy story.” (The First Real Thing, published by Ellora’s Cave, and winner of the 2012 EPIC Award for erotica.)
Then I stumbled across a New York Times article entitled, “Keeping Up With Being Kept” – all about college students literally prostituting themselves to pay their tuition. Once I got over my shock, the idea for Priceless grabbed me by the throat.
Of course, it didn’t hurt that I already had the perfect physical inspirations for Connor, my socially-inept, workaholic physics professor, and Wes, the brilliant young student/rent boy his buddy secretly buys him as a 35th birthday gift. (And if you follow me on Twitter, you know exactly which perfect physical inspirations I’m talking about – their initials are M(ichael) F(assbender) and J(ames) M(cAvoy). With the images of these two gorgeous men fixed in my mind, the story practically wrote itself.
Despite the similar theme, Wes is quite different from Cameron, my male escort protagonist from The First Real Thing. Cam’s an experienced professional, whereas poor Wes is just making it all up as he goes. I felt so bad about the hell I put him through, I wanted to wrap him up in a blanket and cuddle him —but, luckily for my readers, I left that to Connor instead.
I’ve got several more rent boy stories rattling around in my brain – including one set in Paris in the 1920’s (*shudders at the thought of all that research!*). Somewhere in between revising my Courtland Chronicles series and writing my gay opera singer story (which may or may not also be historical!), I’ll probably get around to writing at least a couple of them.
In the meantime, enjoy Priceless!
When love’s for sale, who really pays?
Connor Morrison is a 3D optics pioneer, the star of the UC Berkeley physics department, and a socially-inept workaholic. And with his dear friend and business partner, Steve Campbell, handling their investors, he’s content to remain in the shadows. That is, until he meets the gorgeous and starry-eyed physics student Wes Martin.
Wes is brilliant but broke. Ever since his scholarship fell victim to the financial crisis, he’s had no choice but to sell his body to stay in school. Already half in love with Connor, Wes initially resists Steve’s offer to be Connor’s thirty-fifth birthday present. But in the end, Wes is too broke—and too smitten—to say no.
Connor has no idea Steve bought Wes’s attentions, and he quickly falls under the young man’s spell. Yet after one night together, Wes disappears. He can’t bear to hook with a man he could so easily grow to love, but he also can’t bear to tell him the truth. Besides, if he sleeps with Connor again, there’d be no way to hide the bruises one of his regular johns loves to inflict. Only one thing to do: let Connor go. Walking away is painful, but not nearly as much as building a relationship on lies.
EPIC Award-winning author Cat Grant lives by the sea in beautiful Monterey, California, with one persnickety feline and entirely too many books and DVDs. When she’s not writing, she sings along to whatever’s on her iPod, watches lots of movies, and fantasizes about kinky sex with Michael Fassbender.
Where to find Cat: