Author Name: Tali Spencer
Book Name: Victory Portrait
Series: Pride of Uttor
Imperial captive and former Sebboyan prince Peta Kordeun has one great wish: to meet Darius Arrento, conqueror of his country and a man he has idolized since childhood. That wish comes true the day the Uttoran emperor assigns Peta to assist the artist who will be painting the great general’s official portrait.
General Darius Arrento would rather take a crossbow bolt through his flesh than sit for a portrait, until his friend the emperor forces his hand. The notorious artist, Brazzi, uses semen and other sexual fluids to bind his colors—and Arrento is captivated by the artist’s pretty helper. Before long he is driven to possess the gorgeous young man who draws battle maps and whose naïve charm has won more hearts in Uttor than Arrento has won battles.
When Arrento learns that Peta, the slave he covets and wants for his own, is one of the despised Kordeun princes, he storms from Uttor toward a far corner of the empire—where he quickly finds himself embroiled in a plot to tear Uttor’s empire apart. His emotions and loyalties frayed, the great Arrento is in the battle of his life…and Peta may hold the key to his survival.
Pages or Words: 78,600 words
Categories: Alternate Universe, Fantasy, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Romance
“You want me to assist the painter. Only that?” Peta asked.
“Yes. I just want you to understand you will be naked and…Brazzi will want you to be sexually aroused.”
“It’s what Brazzi does. Not for himself—not unless you’re a woman—but for his method. He was tried three years ago on charges of obscenity because he uses…sexual fluids for mixing his paint. He truly is a genius. His colors are astonishing.”
“And you want Arrento to see me like that? Naked and…being used?”
“No.” Gaspar was being firm. “I want a portrait of my general. And I happen to think that the sight of you will keep his ass firmly planted for whatever sittings the painter requires. You see, Darius has one weakness—only one. He cannot resist a thing of beauty—and you, my pretty slave, are the most breathtaking young man I have ever had the privilege to look upon.”
Peta flushed. Gaspar wasn’t smiling. The man was serious.
Could he do it? Did he want to do it? Peta knew he was pretty. His looks had blessed and cursed him all his life. His beauty had attracted Kesme as a fellow cadet and was what Kesme had praised that last night when they’d made love...and Peta’s face was what Lukacz, his own father, had sought to destroy, thinking that doing so would release him from predation and unnatural desires. And now Gaspar, too, wanted only one thing…
“Just sit there and look pretty,” he said, heart sinking as he grasped what Gaspar was asking him to do.
“Only if you’re willing. I’m not completely oblivious to what this sort of service might entail. It could be rather…awkward. On the other hand, it might not be for long. Darius can be stubborn. It’s possible he won’t show up.”
And just as possible that he would.
Peta wanted to say no but he could not get his mouth to form the word. He might never get another chance to see Arrento, perhaps hear his voice. Be in the same room with him.
He’d be silent…naked…terribly exposed even in his utter worship.
But he would at least be able to say he had seen the great man.
“I’ll do it,” he said.
Buy the book:
Resplendence Publishing: http://www.resplendencepublishing.com/m8/816-201-119-942-5--victory-portrait-pride-of-uttor-book-four-by-tali-spencer.html
First, I want to thank Chris T. Kat for having me visit her blog. Chris is one of my favorite authors, so being here is especially fun.
1-Welcome Tali Spencer! Please tell us a bit about yourself and your release.
Oh, I’m your typical fun-loving writer who goes off on adventures through the writing of stories about things that happen only in my head. I live just outside of Philadelphia right now, though I grew up just about everywhere else. My unusual childhood shows up a lot in my stories, including Victory Portrait, which is about a former prince, a grumpy general, and an artist who uses semen in his paintings.
2-How long have you been writing?
I’m one of those people, you know the ones, who have been writing their whole lives. I wrote my first poem in the first grade, my first book when I was 13, and my first published book when I was 27—after my sister dared me to send in one of my many stories. I’ve been publishing ever since, under different names, mostly in the science fiction and fantasy genre, but also in unexpected places like medical journals and airport websites.
3-What compelled you to write this particular story?
Victory Portrait is a sensual book, a sexual story. As with all my stories, there’s more to it than sex, lots more, but at heart it’s a tale about sexual infatuation. I loved writing about Peta’s hero worship of Darius, and also about Darius’ passion for, first, this breath-taking boy. Later both main characters must come to grips with reality—that Peta is a prince and Darius does not feel worthy of him for that reason.
4-What gave you the courage to submit your story to a publisher?
Well, this story didn’t require courage because the publisher wanted it before it was written—but my first novel was an exercise in courage. Both my sister and I loved science fiction, and I had written a science fiction novel about a female-ruled planet and the Terran crash survivors they keep as sex slaves (it wasn’t quite as cheesy as that sounds). My sister liked it and dared me to send it to a publisher. I mean, I couldn’t let her win that dare…so I researched publishers and sent it out. In those days we had to submit the paper manuscript. So I put it in a box, carried it to the post office, and as soon as the postal employee put it in the bin to go out, I asked, “Can I change my mind?” She gave me such a withering look I slunk out of there under a cloud of certain disaster. But the publisher bought it! My first novel was a mass market paperback.
5-When creating your characters, do you have models in mind or are they totally fictional?
My character begin life as pure fiction. I might, along the way, find an inspiration photo that I love and which I incorporate into the character. I did that with Peta in Victory Portrait. I found the loveliest photo of a young man lying on his stomach and showing his glorious backside. Discreet, but also perfect. I do occasionally inflict personality traits on my characters that come from people I’ve met, but never entire personalities.
6-Why did you start writing m/m? Is there something special that draws you to this genre?
I have an epic high fantasy series—four long (really long) books—that has yet to be published, but I love writing in the world. One day I came across a young male character who had something secretive going with a rather mysterious male character in a pairing that should have been hostile…but wasn’t. The characters told me, “We’re together.” So I had to explore that. I wrote their story and it took a decidedly smutty turn because, well, the relationship had a very sexual beginning—and a complex, delicious, epic end that ran parallel to my main story. I was hooked. Hot men. Action. Adventure. I decided to write more stories but in original worlds created just for them.
7-What are you reading right now? Do you have a favorite author or genre?
I’m reading Games of Rome, by JP Kendall. It’s set in the Roman Empire and, well, I can’t resist a good story set in ancient Rome…or Greece, or Egypt, or just about anywhere ancient. (I’m also reading How to Grow Old, by Cicero.) I love mythic stories and those that create societies I can muck around in and learn something new. I have a few favorite genres. Science fiction and fantasy, of course. Historical romances. Fluffy contemporaries that leave me feeling all warm and cozy. As for authors, Chris T. Kat is one of my favorites. I love all of her books! Shira Anthony, who writes fantasy and contemporaries. MA Church and her delightful paranormals. Bernard Cornwell’s Viking series, starting with The Last Kingdom. So many more…
8-What are you working on now?
I’m writing a short novella for Dreamspinner. It’s set in Wisconsin, where I’m from originally and has ice-fishing and M/M romance. I just finished and will be editing “After the Wind,” a Weird Wild West story with elemental cowboys, post-apolcalyptic 1868 Texas, and Comanches, that will be coming out in November.
9-When you're not writing, how do you like to spend your time?
Just call me couch potato. I read, of course, and watch TV with my husband. We enjoy a fair number of shows and consider that our “together” time. On occasion I walk the dog. My standard poodle Cate is getting along in years, but she still loves a good walk! More than I do, to be honest. My idea of fun is to take a nice leisurely cruise.
10-What are your writing goals for 2016?
I’m way overdue on finishing the sequel to my sword and sorcery romp, Thick as Thieves, so I would like to get that done as soon as possible. I have two other novels I need to get in shape for submission also. And I think I promised someone a vampire novel. I can’t imagine why I did that. Most of the time I find vampires tedious.
11-Do you have personal goals for 2016?
I want to keep in better communication with my friends and, if at all possible, meet some of the people I talk to online—readers and writers. I’ve been staring knee replacement surgery in the eyes for a few years now and this might be the year I finally go cyborg.
Meet the author:
Tali Spencer delights in erotic fantasy and adventure, creating worlds where she can explore the heights and shadows of sexual passion. A hopeful romantic and lover of all things exotic, she also writes high fantasy and science fiction. If you would like to see inspiration pictures for her characters, or glimpse how she envisions her worlds, check out her Pinterest boards.
Thanks to a restless father, she grew up as a bit of a nomad and still loves to travel whenever she can. Her longest stint in one place was Milwaukee where she went to college, enjoyed a series of interesting careers, and raised three surprisingly well-adjusted sons. She later married her true love and put down new roots in Philadelphia, where she lives in an ongoing Italian American family sitcom. At least she’s learned how make good pasta. When not writing, Tali reads everything from sweet goofy romances to medical research, manages her fantasy football team—go Gekkos!—and takes long walks with her loving, if slightly neurotic, poodle.
Tali’s other books include the three preceding Uttor books: Captive Heart, Dangerous Beauty, and Adored, all with Resplendence. Her gay male high fantasy stories, Thick as Thieves, Sorcerer’s Knot, and The Prince of Winds, are published by Dreamspinner Press. She often posts free stories and excerpts on her blog.
Where to find the author:
Facebook: : http://www.facebook.com/tali.spencer
Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29851588-victory-portrait
Publisher: Resplendence Publishing
Cover Artist: Melody Pond
Tour Dates & Stops:
18-Apr: Prism Book Alliance
19-Apr: Decadent Delights
21-Apr: Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words
22-Apr: Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents
26-Apr: BFD Book Blog
27-Apr: My Fiction Nook
29-Apr: Oh My Shelves
4-May: Alpha Book Club
6-May: Molly Lolly
9-May: A.M. Leibowitz
10-May: Divine Magazine
Rafflecopter Prize: $10 gift card