Micah Connolly had spent most of her life trying to please others, starting with her family, and ending with Olivia Holden. When she found out that her beloved grandmother had passed away, she was bereft and sought solace with the only person she thought might offer her comfort. Olivia Holden was full of mixed messages, none of them clear, but most of them leaning towards a keen interest in Micah. Their first kiss was a disaster. Overwrought with emotion, she had meant to tell Olivia she had to go home and get her grandmother’s affairs in order, but instead, the night ended in a volatile exchange of words that sent Micah running.
Well over a year had passed since that fateful night, and Olivia still regretted her strict adherence to a set of rules that made her lose the one woman she felt she could love. Chance and fate changes everything when she recognizes Micah weaving her bike wildly through the busy streets of New York.
When Micah and Olivia finally meet again, it isn’t your standard happy reunion. Micah had changed, a lot. She was now darker, edgier, and carried a secret blacker than the leathers she prefers to wear. This new Micah also wasn’t the sort who would accept Olivia taking charge of their budding relationship. Micah had come to terms with a part of herself she had kept hidden, including some things that she wasn’t so sure the high-powered attorney would be game for.
A subtle and erotic game of power play ensues, one that both surprises and delights Micah, but also leaves her with a difficult choice. The past still haunts her, a past requiring an explanation that could tear down all of her carefully constructed walls. Every risk has its own rewards, but what Micah is risking could destroy her.
1. Tell us a little about Switching Gears.
Switching Gears is about two women who almost made a connection a year ago, but circumstances make them miss their chance. Olivia Holden finds she regrets her decision to keep Micah Connolly at a distance due to self-imposed rules, so when a second chance to bring Micah back into her life happens— she jumps on it in a heartbeat. The problem is, Micah is no longer the same woman she was a year ago, she is harder, tougher, and has a lot of emotional armor protecting her and the secrets she is keeping. What happens to Micah after she leaves is something that is eventually revealed to Olivia, over time and through a great deal of patience. Micah has a lot of demons to deal with and she isn’t ready to reveal things to the one woman who could unravel her carefully crafted armor.
Micah had learned the hard way that when bad things happen to you, you can let it destroy you or you can decide to step back and take a really good look at yourself. When she realizes that she isn’t living the life she wanted, Micah remakes herself. When Olivia enters her life again, Micah is at a point where she is becoming more comfortable with who she has become. Now, it is up to Olivia to decide if she can be the woman that Micah needs as well.
This story isn’t your simple lesbian romance, the characters tell it like it is, bringing with them all their fractured pasts. It is about two women who love each other and have to find their common ground to make it work, discovering aspects about themselves they didn’t know along the way.
Switching Gears is a story about discovery, acceptance and yes, a bit of healing as they explore the sexual aspects of their relationship. It is also a story about balance, where two dominant women have to learn how to give and take a bit, carving out a relationship that works for them. We wanted the characters to be surprised at what they learn about themselves along the way.
We like to think that there is one person in the world that you know is your one, but that perfect love comes with the risk of losing it all. You can’t hide parts of yourself from them, and you have to learn to trust and take that leap of faith with them.
2. How did you get started writing les fic?
We started writing together not long after we met, but never considered it something more than telling our story. Then, we got an idea for a couple of books that we started writing in our free time, only to give up after a catastrophic loss. We lost a lot of our documents to a bad virus that infected everything, including the backups, and we set it aside for a while. When we took up writing again several years later, it was just for fun on fan fiction sites—just to get our feet wet again. We were able to find some of our old work from email’s we had been sending back and forth to each other, and we decided to consider publishing after we managed to reconstruct a good chunk of our original manuscript.
3. Favorite movie?
Ok, so no one favorite movie. The Labyrinth with David Bowie can be agreed upon by both…I mean, it’s David Bowie!
4. Are you a plotter or pantster?
A mix of both, I think. We have an idea for a good story, and we know where the characters are supposed to go but sometimes things don’t always go as planned and they lead us somewhere wonderful and strange. So, closer to a pantster.
5. Do you have a pet? What?
Oh, gosh. Where to start? We have horses, a whole farm full along with two dogs and various cats.
6. When you write, do you listen to music?
Yes, the right music can really change the flavor of a scene. In fact, we have a list of music that Micah listened to in our first book, Switching Gears. Music is a big part of the creative process for us, especially for KL. For her, a character isn’t just about looks or attitude or behaviors, it is also about what kind of music they listen to, what sports they play, and even what they chose to do in their spare time. She will listen to “their” music while she types and it helps to get into the characters head. One lyric can blossom into an entire chapter if it sparks something inside.
7. Open your book to any page and give us a window into your character’s lives.
Sipping her coffee, Micah had nothing else to do but wait, so she pulled out her laptop. Maybe she could write something, since her art seemed to be suffering again. Pulling up a blank document, she tapped her fingers lightly against the keys, her thoughts wandering around in her head, trying to find something to write about. Unfortunately, her thoughts kept circling back to last night.
Taking another swallow of the tepid coffee, Micah tried an old trick of hers when she was suffering from writer’s block. As an artist, Micah had used this concept many times, letting the graphite or pencil travel across the paper unimpeded by thought or vision. Clearing her mind, she let her eyes lose focus, turning her thoughts inward. Her fingers travelled along the keyboard, typing without thinking.
It is an unfortunate truth that people are destined to repeat the same patterns in their life over and over again, unless something happens to wake you up, makes you open your eyes to new possibilities. It is also true that it is easier to see these patterns in others, while remaining blind to your own.
Focusing on the computer screen, Micah read her paragraph.
Holy crap. Where did that come from?
Micah had read dozen of stories that involved characters so involved in themselves; it took something major in their lives to shake them up, to make them re-evaluate their past choices, forcing them to make a conscious decision to change. It was almost embarrassing that she had fallen into the same trap. She was hurting Olivia, and in doing so, she was hurting herself and their relationship. It was ironic. As much as Olivia kept pushing her, at least it was because she was trying to get closer. Every time Olivia got closer, Micah had pushed back, caught up in her own issues. If they continued the way they were going, there would be no relationship to worry about. Micah shook her head. It was a difficult pill to swallow, discovering that you have been your own worst enemy.
8. What type of character really resonates with you?
We try to write strong female characters. They may be damaged. They might have a past that make them less than perfect and sometimes difficult, but they have an inner strength that will/can lead them where they need to go physically/mentally and emotionally. No one saves them, but love is often the catalyst to bring their inner strength to bear on the important things in life.
9. If I were your favorite cookie what kind would I be? Would you dunk me in anything?
Oh, my! Other than saying that is not allowed, I will play along and say Ladyfingers. They are decadently rich, fun to eat, and you get to lick the powdered sugar off your fingers when you are done. No dunking.
10. What are you working on next?
Well, we just put out a self-published Novella called Life Is Not a Country Song, which is a sweet love story with a western flair. Who doesn’t love sexy cowboi’s, horses and dogs? In addition to that we have a new Novel coming out through Sapphire Book Publishing called Ladysmith. It is a fantasy novel with a twist and I think people will really enjoy the storyline. It is, of course, also a romance. It is in edits now and should be out in May!
Rhavensfyre is the collaborative pen name used by two east coast writers, Roxanne and KL, who have been partners since 2000 and were finally legally married in Washington, D.C. in 2012. They have a small farm in North Carolina where they raise and breed horses with their two dogs and several cats in tow. In their spare time, they try to keep an organic garden and enjoy the fact that their farm is also home to several owls, a mated pair of hawks, one annoying woodpecker and the occasional bald eagle. In addition to the living creatures, KL and Roxanne enjoy cycling various East Coast trails as well as hiking the Appalachian Trail. Both ladies enjoy photography and love to share images from their frequent trips through the scenic countryside.
Roxanne, known to her friends as “Roxy,” is an Oklahoma native who lived in various states before graduating from a Los Angeles area high school. An avid artist, she spent ten years in the military–both Army and Navy–before embarking upon her second career. While serving as a patriot missile operator in the Army, she landed a coveted position as post artist, allowing her to pursue her creative passion on a full-time basis. After transferring to the Navy, she served as a hospital corpsman, deployed twice to the Middle East while assigned to a USN warship. She also worked in security during her last year of active duty before leaving the military for a career in healthcare. Roxy holds two bachelor’s degrees: one in criminal justice and a second in healthcare. Her personal interests include mythology, ancient history, and psychology, and she cites walking through the ancient city of Petra, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, as one of the most amazing experiences she had while serving in the United States Navy.
KL was born in Norfolk, Virginia and lived most of her life in the South. She was professionally educated as a horse trainer and riding instructor, and she had innumerable wins in the Western Pleasure circuits until a traumatic back injury in 1999 prevented her from riding for many years. Today, she still pleasure rides, as well as breeds American Quarter Horses. KL is an avid cyclist, but her love of cycling doesn’t end with the local trails. She enjoys collecting and restoring antique bikes as well as tinkering with her own ride, doing all of the work herself. She is also accomplished in metalwork–from her work as a farrier to unique knife designs and artwork with steel and iron. Music is a big part of her life, and in her free time she enjoys strumming any of her three guitars or joining the owls by playing haunting notes on her didgeridoo.
Switching Gears is their first book.
If you want to hear the Switching Gears playlist go to:
Amazon link to Switching Gears:
Don’t forget to check out Rhavensfyre’s new story: