Jeff & Will welcome author Gabbi Grey to talk about her sunshine/grumpy, forced proximity romance Ginger Snapping All the Way. Gabbi shares how Ginger Snapping became her first full length novel, and how the characters of Maddox and Ravi found their way to the page. We also get details on the pets she writes into her books (including how Princess Sofia from Ginger Snapping is based on her dog), what’s coming up for her various pen names in 2022, and some great book recommendations.
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Here are the things we talk about in this episode. Please note, these links include affiliate links for which we may make a small commission at no extra cost to you should you make a purchase. These links are current at the time the episode premieres, however links are subject to change.
- Gabbi Grey Interview
- Gabbi Grey: website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
- Ginger Snapping All the Way by Gabbi Grey on Amazon | Kobo
- If Only for Today by Gabbi Grey on Amazon | Kobo
- Mozza Burger from A&W
- Secret Santa: A Christmas Romance Collection by various authors on Goodreads
- Gabbi Black on Amazon | Kobo
- Michael Dean on Amazon | Libro.fm
- Ava March on Amazon | Kobo
- Into Deep Waters by Kaje Harper on Amazon | Kobo
- Love in Laguna series by Tara Lain on Amazon
- Rainbow Gold Reviews website
- Deerbourne Inn series by various authors on Amazon | Kobo
- The Emotional Wound Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Psychological Trauma by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi on Amazon | Kobo
- Mr. Jingle Bells by Leta Blake on Amazon
- Beautiful Dreamer by Christina Lee on Amazon
- Life Lessons series by Kaje Harper on Amazon
- Endless Road to Sunshine by Nicky James on Amazon
- Trials of Fear series by Nicky James on Amazon
- Gabbi’s Dog on Santa’s Lap via Instagram
- Solstice Surprise by Gabbi Grey on Amazon | Kobo
- Big Gay Fiction Podcast on Patreon.com
- Libro.fm website (use this link to receive your Big Gay Fiction Podcast special offer)
- Frolic Podcast Network website
This transcript was made possible by our community on Patreon. You can get information on how to join them at patreon.com/biggayfictionpodcast.
Jeff: Coming up on this episode, author Gabbi Grey joins us to talk about her forced proximity, snowbound romance, “Ginger Snapping All the Way.”
Will: Welcome to episode 356 of the Big Gay Fiction Podcast, the show for avid readers and passionate fans of gay romance fiction I’m Will, and with me as always is my co-host and husband, Jeff.
Jeff: Hello, rainbow romance readers. It’s great to have you here for another episode of the show.
We’re going to get right to our wonderful conversation with Gabbi Grey. At the end of last year, Will I both became fans as Will read “If Only for Today,” and I read her holiday slash snowbound romance, “Ginger Snapping All the Way.” I had a great time talking with Gabbi about her books and how she mixes angst, humor, and pets into her stories.
Gabbi Grey Interview
Jeff: Gabbi, welcome to the podcast. It is so wonderful to have you here.
Gabbi: Thank you.
Jeff: And while this is airing in early January, we’re actually spending some Christmas morning together, which is really a fantastic way to spend the bit of the morning talking about books.
Gabbi: I’ve got my chai latte and I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a Christmas morning than with you.
And I’m excited that we get to talk about “Ginger Snapping All the Way.” It was one of my favorite reads from the holiday season. And I think it’s great to talk about here in early January too, because it does have holiday elements, but I think much more it’s a snowbound forced proximity story. Tell us about this book for those who have not picked it up yet.
Gabbi: Well, my publisher asked us to put together a Christmas cookie book. And so, I spent several months thinking of different titles and eventually came up with “Ginger Snapping All the Way” and planned to write a nice, light, fluffy book to go along with the title. And then I started writing the book and I created Maddox, who is a ginger lumberjack, scrooge, and he has emotional wounds.
And then I brought Ravi who’s the sunshine pediatric nurse. Only he’s got emotional wounds. And the further I got into the book, the more I realized that this was not a novella, it was not fluffy. And so, I let the book take me where it wanted to go. And it turned into the work of fiction of my first full length novel.
Jeff: Oh, wow. I knew you’d written several shorts, but I didn’t realize that this one was the first full length novel. That’s really cool. What was it like to write over a longer arc? Because this is not also a short novel it’s around, if I remember it was like 78,000 words or so.
Gabbi: Yeah. It gave me a chance to go really deep into the characters, which is where I like to be, where I’m most comfortable. And I like to make my characters suffer. What’s the worst thing that can happen to them? Okay! That happens. What’s the next worst thing. Well, we’ll make that happen too. So of course, you got to throw in the snowstorm and the broken plane.
So, Ravi is stranded, and Maddox who just wants to be left alone is contacted by his friend who says, “Hey, can you pick up this guy? You know, just, he just needs a place to crash for the night. And then they’re going to fix his plane.” And so, Maddox brings Ravi home, and it’s just supposed to be for the night.
And then of course the snow comes, and they can’t fix the plane, and then there’s a storm and it just kind of rolls from there. And every time it looks like Ravi’s about to leave, something else happens. And as they go forward, they start to sort of unpack why each is the way it is. He is the way he is, and they start asking questions of each other and they start learning more and more than each other.
And then they make the connection of, “Hey, you’re someone that I would like to spend time with.” So, it’s almost bittersweet when the plane is fixed and it’s time for Ravi to go. And of course, you have that sort of dark moment where you’re like, “okay, are they going to make it?” And of course, it’s a romance, so they do.
Jeff: But the fun of it is when you can’t work out how they’re going to fix it. That’s always, my favorite thing is when I’m reading, I’m like, “oh dear, how are they going to fix that? They have to fix it. There’s only a 25% of the book left. That’s got to get fixed, but how.”
Gabbi: Well, and I have the grand gesture where, you know, Maddox follows Ravi. And so, you’re like, okay, well, that’s going to be, and then I do the worst thing, which is I split them up. Each has to go away. Each has work to do internally so that they can be in a place to be in a relationship. And so, they do have to part ways for a little while, but I bring them back together and find a way to make it work. Everybody gets their happy ending.
Jeff: Yeah, it was really one of the things that struck me with this book so much because I’ve been avoiding a lot of angst through ’20 and ’21, and yet the way you presented their wounds and their issues and kind of the almost the slow way you kind of spread that out between their internal monologues, as they’re kind of working out what they might say to the other person, and then what they do say, I never felt like I got a lot of it piled on me all at once, which was helpful. But it was also so beautifully organic how you spread it in the story too.
Gabbi: That was a choice. When I was writing as a novella Maddox’s revelation comes fairly early in the story. Once I gave myself permission to write a full-length novel, I held back Ravi.
He just needed, he had an even tougher climb because he does come across as this really happy guy. Who’s got everything going for him. He’s heading home for the birth of his God daughter. It’s all good. You know, he’s doing this charity work in the Philippines, and he’s got a good life going and he hasn’t even dealt with the pain that drove him to leave Canada in the first place.
And here he’s coming back, and there’s issues, and it’s through helping Maddox deal with his issues that Ravi finding realizes. And, Maddox says to him, “You know, you’re not acting like a guy who’s all happy to go back and I can see that, that there’s something inside you. And I think you need to deal with it here before you go back to the people who care about you, because it’s going to drag you down.”
And so that’s when Ravi finally makes his revelation.
Jeff: Yeah. It was really interesting that somebody who carries as much as Maddox does, could also key into that. And that to me was like one of the biggest clues relatively early on that these two really belong together because they’re good for each other in that way that they could kind of bring those things up in that way.
Gabbi: One of the lines in the book is “it takes one wounded soul to recognize another.”
Jeff: It was interesting to, as sunny as Ravi is, like you mentioned, that you didn’t make this just a grumpy sunshine book because our two heroes have all of this stuff going on in their past that they really have to work through.
It seems like an interesting challenge as the author to get to kind of piece all that together and then make it work.
Gabbi: I like to bring an element of angst to my book, even the book previous to that, which was a sweet romance. I brought elements of angst into that as well, because it just is how I write these guys. They have emotional wounds and it’s really tough to pack that into a novella. So, it was really nice to unpack it in a full-length novel, and my hope is going forward to write more full-length novels.
Jeff: How did you approach really restructuring the book? Did you essentially go back and start over and replot your arc or are you more of a pantser anyway, so it was just a matter of like piecing it together as you went.
Gabbi: I’m a pantser and I was coming to the end of the word limit for the novella and just realized that there was no way I could fit in. I mean, they were still in the cabin. There was no way that I could get them out of the cabin and to Calgary for the birth of the goddaughter. And then the final result. It just wasn’t going to work.
And fortunately, I hadn’t written myself into a box, so I was able to kind of traverse that easing into the, okay. I can take more time. I can add another couple of scenes. I can find ways to bring them closer, but not feel like it… I didn’t feel like I was stuffing the novel with stuff that wasn’t important. I felt like each scene had to have a purpose and I felt like it did.
Jeff: I would agree with that. There was nothing there that it’s like, okay, why are we doing this? And that’s always kind of a bit of a thing with forced proximity too, cause I’m always impressed how, especially when you take it over the course of several days, instead of maybe a single day kind of stuck in the cabin, how you find things to do so it’s not like we’re just not sitting on the couch and talking, or we’re not just, having some more sex, in the bedroom or wherever else in the cabin, we might be.
There are things to do that, then organically bring out the conversation.
Gabbi: Well, there’s baking of course. Gingerbread.
Jeff: Love the baking!
Gabbi: And Ravi’s Indian, so he he makes some curry chicken. And then there’s Sofia because I just needed…
Jeff: I love the dog.
Gabbi: Early on I realized that Maddox was really coming across as just a massive grump and I needed to soften him. And I realized that he had a little white dog named Princess Sofia, and it just softens him in a way that worked for the story. Yes, he’s alone, but he has this dog. And she’s often the reason that he keeps going.
I mean, he loves his nieces and his nephew. He loves his sister, but when it comes right down to it, he understands that he’s responsible for this dog. And he has to take care of himself because he has to be there to take care of her. And that some days is his reason to keep going, is this little dog.
Jeff: Who’s got such a personality. It’s really like a third character, you know, there’s Maddox and there’s Ravi. And then there’s Sofia, who demands the attention or who gets fussy when she can’t have it.
Gabbi: Who may or may not resemble my pooch. There’s one story, there’s one anecdote right in the beginning that I just had to tell. And it happened to me one day I drove home.
The dog had been with me when I was in the store, and I came home, and I opened the back seat, and the dog was not in the back seat. So, to say that I lost my mind was an understatement.
We lived in the middle of nowhere. I was walking the back roads for about an hour and a half. Cause, I mean, she had to be somewhere, right? I was afraid that she, the dead or hurt or. And this woman pulled up and said, are you looking for a little white dog? Yes ma’am. So, she drove me to where my dog was. She was at the back of someone’s property, just sitting there happy as anything.
And I’m all distressed and crying. And she’s like, you know what? I’m just going to stay down here with you. Cause I don’t really recognize this stressed-out person that you are. My sister pulled up in her car, went “treats” and my dog comes running. And I scooped her up and I’m crying and she’s like, what is going on? Like, she’s totally, didn’t get it.
I’ve asked repeatedly. She’s never told me if she jumped or if she slid, but she left the car, and the kicker was I had bought a tethering system when I bought the car and it’d been sitting in my trunk for a year. We installed it that day and she’s tethered all the time. She’s not allowed in the car without being tethered because she also on day two, figured out how to lower the window herself.
Jeff: Of course. Which I think, if I remember right, I think Sofia does that too.
Gabbi: Oh yes. And she likes to stick her head out in the wind and the snow. So, her nuzzle gets all wet and then she likes to nuzzle my ear, or Maddox’s ear or, yeah, I had fun writing Sofia.
Jeff: I love that you just pulled right out of your own dog’s life right there.
Gabbi: Well, and even naming the dog, I posted on Facebook and said, I have this really grumpy guy and he’s got this little white dog. Give me names. So, a whole bunch of people gave me names and I used random number generator and it picked Princess Sofia. Apparently, it’s from a movie, I didn’t know this.
So that and some of my other characters have of dogs and cats, and I’ve done that. I find it’s a good way to get engaged. And people come up with stuff I’d never think of.
Jeff: Princess Sofia, name-wise fit the dog to a T. I don’t know if you wrote the dog to the name or if the name just happened to fit the dog that you wrote, but it was perfect.
Gabbi: Kind of a combination of both. Like I said, there’s a lot of my own dog in that in Princess Sofia. And I’ve tried to train the attitude out of her, but she still gives me that look. And I’m like, yes, I’m wrapped around your paw. I know who’s really in charge.
Jeff: What was your inspiration for Maddox and Ravi? Where did these characters come from, as you were putting this together?
Gabbi: I may or may not resemble Maddox in a lot of ways. I won’t go into detail, but Christmas is not the best time of year for me. So, picking a guy who didn’t love Christmas was actually pretty easy. It just kind of flowed and Ravi was a bit tougher. I didn’t know, at first how he was going to fit into Maddox’s world.
And I’ve heard these stories of these doctors and nurses where they go into countries and volunteer and the Philippines didn’t need something like that, but they do have other charitable works who do specialized surgeries. And so that just kind of fit. That would be something that Ravi would do.
And so, he’s volunteering and he’s contributing to get away from the pain of Canada and what he went through here. And that just kind of organically grew from there.
Jeff: I love the organicness of both of those. Even as you kind of grew Maddox out of your own, feelings and the way that Christmas is for you.
I have to say one of the things that just threw me back to my own childhood in the book is after Maddox picks Ravi up, they go to A&W which I’m just like, oh my gosh A&W.
We had A&W’s in Michigan when I was growing up in the seventies. And I’ve only been since I left Michigan in 78, I’ve only seen one other A&W that was here in California. But this place, they got the burgers and the onion rings like, yes, that A&W.
Gabbi: And the root beer, don’t forget the root beer.
Jeff: And the root beer, of course. Cause you can’t go to A&W without the root beer. And it just, I could just imagine it, the smell of it filling the cab. And it just threw me back to childhood there. Had nothing at all really to do with the story, but it was like, wow.
Gabbi: And I might’ve gotten a Mozza Burger as inspiration. There’s one just down the street from me and I love A&W.
Jeff: Oh, nice. I need to come to Canada. I didn’t know there were A&W’s in Canada still.
Gabbi: Oh, yeah. Come visit me. There’s one literally across the street from me up here in Ammanford.
Jeff: Well, there you go. That may have to be a later 2022 thing. A trip to see Gabbi and go get some A&W.
Within “Ginger Snapping,” what was your favorite scene to write?
Gabbi: The epilogue. The first scene of the book is in Maddox’s point of view, and you get him driving to the airport and you get that sense that he’s just grumpy, you know. Other drivers are crazy. It’s a snowstorm. He doesn’t want to be doing this, but he owes his friend a favor and he will always owe her. So, she asks for this, and he does it, right.
The epilogue is a year later, also in Maddox’s point of view, reflecting on how much his life has changed. And that kind of transition was fun to write. Plus, I sneak in a couple of little, tiny tidbits of where they’re going to go as a couple. That was fun to write that just total transformation.
Jeff: It was a great epilogue because it really gave you that solid foundation for their HEA to go forward. I mean, I always into romance thinking yes, HEA and I see it, but here you just really set that foundation so well for them.
And with that, I kind of have to ask, is there any plans that, somewhere down the line, we see other people in the same universe, that maybe we get to revisit Maddox and Ravi at some point or?
Gabbi: While, since you asked, I had the opportunity in November to join an anthology called “Secret Santa: A Romance Collection.” It’s mostly m/f romances, but there are two m/m romances. Mine is one of them. And I had to write something really quickly and it was a novella. And I had a week to put together this story to make it into the anthology. It’s a charity anthology and super excited about it.
And so, my mind went okay, where can we go? And I thought about Maddox’s ex. Stanley is an ass hat. There’s just no way around it.
Jeff: That’s putting it nicely actually.
Gabbi: Well, he left Maddox while Maddox was still in the hospital. After the, his injury. He might’ve been, you know, eyeing other guys. Just a jerk and Maddox is sort of a bit more mellow about it. His sister, Hillary hates Stan. Their friend, Meg hates Stan.
And I thought, what if Stan has a story. What if there’s a reason why he was that way. And what if he could be redeemed? And within half a day, his story coalesced in my mind. And I knew the first scene had to be Meg, Maddox’s best friend confronting him and saying, “Hey, you know what?” And he’s like, “Okay, I deserve it. I’m a jerk. Cut me some slack.”
And then I was talking to a friend about different ideas, and we were like, well, who’s the other guy going to be. Like, where’s this going to come from? It’s a Christmas story. And she was like a dog. Let’s have a lost dog. And I was like, great, except Sofia stole the show in “Ginger” and this next book is coming. This next story is coming in a month after “Ginger.” Story-wise, it’s a couple of years, but just normal time-wise it’s a month. So, I didn’t want to go there.
And I was like, what about a loss kid? Oh, a lost kid at Christmas. Okay, how does a kid get lost? And outgrew the story, and I was able to pull in another character from another series, a counselor. And the next thing I knew “Stanley’s Christmas Redemption” was written. And it’s been published and I’m super happy about it. I’m so happy with the book that when the anthology, when I get the story back, I plan to expand it into a full-length novel. And yes, Ravi and Maddox and their happily ever after definitely make an appearance in this story.
Maddox is very forgiving, and he and Stanley are gonna sort of have it out once and for all and come to an understanding.
The hope is to release it for Christmas in July.
Gabbi: So that’s the plan.
So, you write as both Gabbi Grey for m/m, and Gabbi Black for some m/f, you’ve been in it for a couple of years now, but what got you started writing?
Gabbi: Well, I actually am planning to launch my third and final pen name in the summer. Gabbi Powell. Got to be consistent. I started writing 10 years ago.
I should go back. I started writing at the end of university, but I finished my first m/f novel in 2012 and sent it off to a publisher, had a nibble. It went really well. And they say that while you’re waiting, you write the next book. And I wrote the next book, and the next book, and the next book. And they kept me waiting for two and a half years before they finally rejected the first one. And by then I had 18 more.
Now they’re unedited and they need a lot of work, but it’s, it’s a series I’m really happy with. So, it’s a different couple in each book set in Mission City. So, you’ll recognize that Ravi and Maddox are in Mission City. Some of the characters from that book, including Maddox’s therapist, and his physiotherapist are characters that appear in this other series.
So, there’s going to be an arc through all of them, that if people choose to cross over between the pen names, they’ll find it. If they stick to one pen name, though, they’ll have those satisfying relationships in full. All of my books are standalones, you don’t have to read the others, but if you do you get those little, tiny nuggets.
Jeff: I like that you’ve created a universe and a universe that bridges between the pen names.
Gabbi: Well, and even that therapist also appears in the Gabbi Black series, and some of the Gabbi Black world takes place in Vancouver. Some of those characters move out to Mission City. So, they appear in later books as well. I just can’t, I don’t know how to write a character and then let go of it.
Like, even I was writing for my publisher. They did a series set in Vermont and I wrote the first story, and I was really happy with it. They allowed me to write a second story. I was right in there because I wanted to bring back those characters from the first story, and just revisit them one more time. And I even find it hard to let go of those guys.
But I have them on audio. So at least I can listen to them from time to time and re-immerse myself in those stories. I’ve lucked out. I’ve had two amazing narrators. So, so far all of my books I’ve been able to put out on audio and that just was a tremendous project to work on this year. It was getting that done.
Jeff: Yeah. I love the “Ginger Snapping” audio. It just, it captured everything so, so well.
Gabbi: Yeah, Michael Dean was amazing.
Jeff: Yeah, Michael Dean is always a great narrator and he, yeah, he just bought Ravi and Maddox to life so well.
Going back kind of what gave you the writing bug?
Gabbi: In university, my final semester, I took a creative writing course and I planned to write Canadian literary short stories. That was my thing. And my instructor said, “nope you have to write a book.” And I went “What do I write a book about it?”
I had just read a few Harlequins. And so that was sort of turning in my mind, and when I sat down to write this story, as much as I was known for my angst, I was also a playwright at the time. And everybody… she does angst so well. And yet when I sat down to write a book with a bit of angst and there was also happy ending.
So, I kept going back to those stories over the next 10 years. I’d pick it up, I’d write a little bit more, and then I put it back down. And then eventually I realized if not now, when? And I was getting close to my forties and realized that this was still a dream to get published.
Like I said, I finished my first book in 2012 and just kept going and I haven’t stopped. For romance, when I got my first Kobo, before even I had a Kindle. I’m Canadian we do Kobo first. I was going through the free books, and I picked up an Ava March. And I realized now that was my first romance. And I didn’t even really see it that way. I just went, “oh, two guys in Regency, England. This is interesting.”
As I moved forward, I picked up a freelance editor, who’s been working with me. And she’s a huge Kaje Harper fan and Tara Lain fan. And she kept saying “You need to try these authors because I think it’ll expand how you see books and how you write.”
And so I picked up Kaje Harper’s audio of “Into Deep Waters.” Just still one of my all time favorites. I recommend it to everyone. And I picked up Tara Lain’s “Love in Laguna” series and also fell in love. Then it just sort of expanded from there. I literally, one day I was at the library and I pulled up Audible’s m/m list, and I just started looking. I picked up some lesfic as well. And I just went through and everything that interested me, I picked up and I just started listening and then eventually I had the opportunity to become a reviewer for Rainbow Gold Reviews and it stuck.
And eventually my previous publisher was looking for people to write an m/m romance. I tried. They wanted the novella. I wrote a novella. It wasn’t a good novella. I have since reworked it into a full length novel and plan to indie publish it.
This new publisher that I was with, they were looking for stories set in Vermont, and I just realized that I wanted to write a gay romance for the series. And it’s 28 book series, and two of them are mine and they’re the two gay romances. And there’s been some crossover pulling in some readers who wouldn’t necessarily have known to go there who have tried these books and have liked them and have enjoyed them.
Jeff: That’s a wonderful story, and I like how it kind of just, it sounds like you’ve started romance because you’d been reading the Harlequins and then you meshed your angst and your romance side together there and this off you went.
Gabbi: I read so much romance. I hardly read any unhappy ending books. I can’t take them.
Jeff: Yeah. Right there with you. Give me the HEA every single time. And I’m a happy person.
I know at least part of the answer to this question, just from our conversation. In terms of trademarks of Gabbi Grey stories, obviously angst and wounds are in there somewhere. What else kind of go into the mix for you on a consistent basis?
Gabbi: You’re right there. “The Emotional Wound Thesaurus” by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi, is my guide. It is my Bible. It’s on my shelf. From there I try to inject a bit of humor. So, you get the angst and I’ve started to sort of put a trigger warning about the angst, so people aren’t too taken aback. “Ginger” has probably the most angst that I’ve ever done in a book.
I try to bring some humor. I mean, I’m not as quirky or sarcastic as some other authors do that really well. That snark that’s their trademark. I don’t have that, but I try to inject some humor. There’s often a pet or two. Even Stanley’s story has the therapy dog that the counselor uses.
Jeff: That’s interesting that you said this is the heaviest of the angst, because, you know, as I mentioned, I’ve been like an angst averse lately. And somehow the way you put out all that angst, like I said, it didn’t bury me in the angst.
So that balancing of the humor in the lighter aspects I think it’s a little bit of an art form to be able to kind of be able to balance those in a way that don’t kind of bury you on one side or the other.
So, you mentioned that you review, so you and you read a lot, what’s some books you would recommend to our listeners that they should pick up if they haven’t already.
Gabbi: Well, it’s Christmas. So, I need to mention a couple of Christmas books. I read Leta Blake’s “Mr. Jingle Bells,” and again, a nice light fluffy title for a book that has a fair amount of angst in it. Really well done, it’s very long, but it was well worth it. I listened to the audio and just immersed in it.
I also picked up Christina Lee’s “Beautiful Dreamer.” So, it’s a couple of years old, but it had a ballet dancer in it. I just loved that. Kaje Harper is releasing her “Life Lessons” series on audio. And I was thrilled to pick up the first one. And now I’m like chomping at the bit for the next one.
And then my other real favorite these days is Nicky James. Now, here you go angst. I really loved her book “Endless Road to Sunshine.” It’s about a man who discovers he was married to a serial killer. And it’s so how do you cope with knowing you were married to a monster and how do you move on with your life? So, there is an appropriate amount of angst. And her phobia series is just amazing.
Jeff: Yeah. I’ve heard a couple of recommendations on the phobia series and one day I might be able to take those on. I think that might be a little much for me.
Gabbi: Like just the idea of having a phobia so profound that it affects your life so, just so much. Like one of the characters is afraid of going to sleep well, how do you not sleep? Another character is afraid of touch. Well, how do you make it through, without touch?
I mean, with everything that’s going on these days, I don’t get a lot of touch. I live alone. I don’t see my family very often. So, the thought of turning away what little access to what I have is overwhelming. I’m always like, “Hey, we’re wearing our mask, let’s hug.” And I’m a firm believer that pets bring your stress level down. And I’m very fortunate that I have a couple of pets that I can just cuddle with and pet and have that stress relief and to be able to have that contact. I look forward to the day when we can all get together and hug without being worried.
Jeff: Fingers crossed for 2022.
Jeff: We talked a little bit about what’s coming up next with the Christmas in July, where we get to find out more about Maddox’s ex. What else could you share with us that might be coming from you in 2022
Gabbi: I am planning to write a novella for my publisher. It’s going to be an erotic romance. And there might be some characters from another book who are going to revisit from another series. So, I’ll be happy to bring them back.
And I am currently writing next year’s Christmas book. Getting in early on that one, it’s mostly finished. There’s an appropriate amount of angst. There’s a dog named Lucky, and it’s quite his own little character, except he’s not little he’s a big dog.
Jeff: That’s great you’re writing your Christmas book in the Christmas season rather than like middle of summer. So many of us do that, you know?
Gabbi: I wrote Maddox during the heat dome. It was a little challenge to think about, about the cold snow when we were just like baking. And then I’m also launching a number of books under the Gabbi Powell in the Mission City world. So, and I’m hoping to do my third and final BDSM, dark erotic work under Gabbi Black. So 2022, is going to be a very busy year for me, for sure.
Jeff: Fantastic. Lots of books coming out. I love it.
What’s the best way for folks to keep up with you online? So, they know when all of these things are coming out and to keep up with any news.
Gabbi: I would say probably my website. I’m pretty good about keeping that updated. So gabbigrey.com. There’s also a link through to Gabbi Black and there will be a link through to Gabbi Powell. You can sign up for my newsletter when you’re on the website and I do my best to send those out. Probably not as frequently as I should. I’m also on Facebook as those three pen names and on Instagram as @authorgabbigrey. And I try to post pictures of my dog. I have a beautiful one of her on Santa’s lap with this big grin on her face. You think she was happy to be there? Someone was super happy about that.
Jeff: Fantastic, we will put all of those in our show notes page, along with all the books that we talked about. Some great recommendations for folks here and they should of course pick up “Ginger Snapping” if they haven’t read that yet, there’s still plenty of wintertime left.
Gabbi: One of my books ” Solstice Surprise” is free on all platforms. So, if you want to try me out, you’re not sure that you want to dive into, you know, something right away. It is the second part of a series, but it’s a standalone. It’s a Christmas book and it’s free. So, we welcome to pick that up.
Jeff: Awesome. We’ll put that in the show notes too.
Gabbi, thank you so much for talking to us about “Ginger Snapping” and of course spending a little bit of your Christmas day with us.
Gabbi: Like I said, I can’t think of a better way to spend it. Thank you so much, Jeff.
Will: This episode’s transcript has been brought to you by our community on Patreon. If you’d like to read the conversation for yourself, simply head on over to the show notes page for this episode at biggayfictionpodcast.com. And don’t forget, the show notes page also has links to everything that we’ve talked about in this episode.
Jeff: Thanks again to Gabbi for talking with us about books and sharing what’s coming up for her three pen names this year. I’m definitely looking forward to more with the character she introduced in “Ginger Snapping” as well as checking out more of her broader universe of characters.
Will: All right, I think that’ll do it for now. Coming up on Monday in episode 357, New York Times bestselling author Lauren Blakely is going to be joining us to talk about her latest, “The Best Men.”
Jeff: If you caught my review back in episode 355, you already know that I love “The Best Men,” which Lauren co-wrote was Sarina Bowen. I had a great time talking with Lauren about this book, as well as her 100 plus book career.
Will: On behalf of Jeff and myself, we want to thank you so much for listening, and we hope that you’ll join us again soon for more discussions about the kind of stories that we all love, the big gay fiction kind. Until then keep turning those pages and keep reading.
Big Gay Fiction Podcast is part of the Frolic Podcast Network. Find more shows you’ll love at frolic.media/podcasts. Production assistance by Tyson Greenan. Original theme music by Daryl Banner.