Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Featured Guest Authors: JL Merrow & Josephine Myles debate their favourite brand of speculative fiction. Includes Giveaway.


Happy Release Day to JL Merrow & Josephine Myles

We are thrilled to welcome JL Merrow and Josephine Myles here to Sinfully today on the release day of their recent joint anthology Help, My Boyfriend’s an Alien


Star Trek vs Star Wars: Is the phaser mightier than the lightsaber?

Sci fi covers a broad spectrum, from space westerns to futuristic imaginings and alternate realities. It could be lightsabers at dawn as JL Merrow and Josephine Myles are here today, in celebration of their latest Mad About the Brit Boys anthology, Help, My Boyfriend’s an Alien!, to debate their favourite brand of speculative fiction.


Jamie: I’m going to nail my colours to the mast and come down firmly on the side of Star Trek. One thing that has always irritated me about Star Wars is the whole “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away” thing. So, what you’re basically saying is that these people have been dead for centuries and weren’t from round here anyway? So why should I care what happens to them? ;)

More seriously, I think that while the basic storyline of Star Wars (epic battles; heroic resistance) could be transplanted to any setting and still make sense, that of Star Trek (meeting aliens) could only take place in a science fiction context. Which makes it, to my mind, the truer science fiction.

Jo: Now you’re forcing me into arguing in favour of Star Wars, damn you! But you know what, aside from the fact I’m a die-hard Trekkie, I think the Star Wars epic mythology has a lot going for it. It’s a fairy-tale of good vs evil that works in any time frame, and that’s no bad thing.

Jamie: Hmm, I suppose what you’re saying is that Star Wars is a sort of re-telling of a primordial tale (is that a term?) that anyone can relate to, and I can sort of see your point. But by the very nature of that, it’s looking back to our past, rather than forward to the future, which is what Star Trek does. And isn’t that the very point of speculative fiction - to speculate?

Jo: I’m not so sure. I mean, I enjoy writers who can get us thinking about where the human race and technology might be heading, but for me science fiction is at its best when it’s making a point about human nature--not about aliens! And Star Wars does tell that kind of tale superbly. Who can’t get behind the heroic band of rebels, fighting against the imperialist overlords? By comparison, the cast of Star Trek are the staid establishment, hampered by their Starfleet rules and regulations.

Plus Star Wars has Han Solo, which is really the only argument I need to make, surely?!

Jamie: You know, I’ve never really got the appeal of Han Solo, but I freely accept I’m in a minority here (please don’t turn your laser cannons on me, rest of the world!) And I’ll admit Star Trek’s Starfleet seem, through the years, to have inexplicably chosen their captains on grounds of competence rather than physical hotness, although Chris Pine as the rebooted Captain Kirk has a certain fluffy-haired, bushy-browed charm. However, if it’s eye candy you’re after in your starship captains, I’d suggest you should look no further than Captain Tight Pants himself, Mal Reynolds from Firefly, as played by Nathan Fillion. There’s a captain who looks good in any outfit  - or indeed no outfit at all, as in episode 11, “Trash”!

Jo: Ooh, I do love me a bit of Captain Reynolds! And of course, don’t forget Captain Jack Harkness from Doctor Who and Torchwood, played by the delightful John Barrowman.

Jamie: And he and Captain John (Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s James Marsters) made such a lovely couple… Okay, I know you’re going to shoot me down in flames for that!

Jo: Actually, I kind of agree, so long as they form a threesome with Ianto Jones, who is of course Jack’s one true love. Oh yes, isn’t sci-fi fandom wonderful for inspiring such insane shipping wars?! Although of course, Torchwood being Torchwood, there actually was the suggestion of a threesome made… And all the m/m loving fans heads exploded!

Hmm, we seem to have strayed away from the original question, which was Star Trek or Star Wars, which is best? Maybe we should say neither lightsabers nor phasers--give these girls a sonic screwdriver any day! Especially if that’s an alcoholic drink...


Readers, which science fiction universe do you reckon is best: Star Trek, Star Wars, or something else entirely? And which starship captain is hot enough to tempt you to stow away on board? Enquiring minds demand to know!

photo credit: Katana vs. Lightsaber via photopin (license)

photo credit: Da man and Pond via photopin (license)


Help, My Boyfriend’s an Alien!

A Mad About the Brit Boys anthology

JL Merrow and Josephine Myles


Genre: Science Fiction, M/M Romance

Release date: 12th January 2016

goodreads add to


Love—and desire—that’s out of this world...

It’s time to suit up, take those protein pills, and boldly come where no man has come before. Take a trip to the future, or do your bit for inter-planetary relations with some close encounters of a very unusual kind.

In this erotic science fiction triple feature you’ll meet a cat that’s anything but cute and cuddly, take a pill that’ll make you fall in love—for a night—and discover desire that transcends the limitations of a human body. It’s a brave new world as you explore the unknown in three short stories that push the boundaries of love in ways both thoughtful and tongue-in-cheek.

These stories have all been previously published, but are now available exclusively in this anthology.

Better Than Cola

Human social etiquette. Physical contact. Pronouns. They’re not easy to handle, when you’re a swarm creature with a composite mind, newly fitted into a male human body. Especially when you find your body reacting to the human man assigned to help you acclimatise...


Skip likes to party, and he likes loving men. What he doesn’t like is the morning after, when the effects of the Insta-Love™ mood patch have worn off and he’s left with an awkeard social encounter. So when he wakes up next to a naked bear of a man, his first instinct is to kick the stranger out. But Wildman has other ideas, and Skip may have to learn how to snuggle.

Gifted in Tongues

Space pilot Torvald “Spitz” Spitzbergen wakes up in an alien jail with a hangover, no clear memory of the night before – and a six foot ginger Felid as a cell mate.  How is he going to get out of this one? And more importantly, will he get a chance to check out the Felid’s legendary talents first?

Purchase link 

Price: $0.99/£0.99/€0.99



Other titles in the series

Mad About the Boys

Boys Who Go Bump in the Night

Boy Meets Boy Meets Boy (15th March 2016)


Meet JL Merrow

Waterhouse_a_mermaid hires
JL Merrow is a very English writer of (mainly) m/m fiction who finds writing the only way to stay sane, except of course when a plot is driving her crazy. Having grown up on an island, she can’t remember a time before she could swim and prefers to remain close to water at all times. Luckily, the weather in her native land being as it generally is, this is not difficult.

I’m that rare beast; an English person who refuses to drink tea. I’m a writer of (mainly) m/m or f/f romance, mostly contemporary or paranormal, but with a fickle muse that occasionally ambushes me in dark alleyways and drags me off, cackling, to write historical or science fiction.

Some might call all this pillar-to-posting tragic evidence of a short attention span; I couldn’t possibly….er, what were we talking about, again?

I enjoy reading, martial arts, and surprising people who judge a book by its cover.

She is a member of the UK GLBTQ Fiction Meet organising team.




Meet Josephine Myles

Josephine Myles
English through and through, Josephine Myles is addicted to tea and busy cultivating a reputation for eccentricity. She writes gay erotica and romance, but finds the erotica keeps cuddling up to the romance, and the romance keeps corrupting the erotica. Jo blames her rebellious muse but he never listens to her anyway, no matter how much she threatens him with a big stick. She’s beginning to suspect he enjoys it.

Jo publishes regularly with Samhain. She has also been known to edit anthologies and self-publish on occasion.





Readers, which science fiction universe do you reckon is best: Star Trek, Star Wars, or something else entirely? And which starship captain is hot enough to tempt you to stow away on board? Enquiring minds demand to know!

Giveaway: one lucky commenter will win a book of their choice from both Jo and Jamie’s backlists!

Please include your email address so we can contact you

::: And the winner is……. Anne ……. CONGRATULATIONS! :::


  1. Star Wars, hands down!I will always be a Han Solo girl..

    1. Yay! It's not just me ;) I used to have a poster of Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones up when I was about thirteen. I was a bit embarrassed as he was so old (to me, at the time) so I hid it inside my wardrobe.

    2. I know the feeling, Josephine. My notebook at highschool was full of photos of Han and the Millennium Falcon... My friends used to tease me because I liked an "old" man... LOL!

    3. I also fancied John Malkovich, Patrick Stewart and Michael Stipe (REM) in my teens. Got a bit of a thing for older, balding men. Good thing to, so the boyfriend says #follicallychallenged :P

  2. Star Trek, cause it was the first and had so many series. Star Wars had a seriously bad middle section (ep. 1-3) too which took a lot of the shine off the first section (episodes 4-6). I will say Han Solo over Kirk, Picard, Janeway and whatever Scott Bakula's captain was called.


    1. Yeah, I've got to agree with you about SW 1-3. Overly self-indulgent and long-winded, I thought.

      I'm a big fan of Star Trek the original series and TNG, which I was addicted to in my teens. I even liked Wesley Crusher at the time, which I now know is a major faux pas!

    2. I'm going to prove myself NOT a true Star Wars fan here by saying I actually kind of liked Jar Jar Binks... ;)

    3. Hi Anne, Congratulations! ~ you are our lucky winner! An email is on its way to you :-)

  3. i love star wars....

    1. You're definitely not alone there! ;)

  4. It's a difficult one that. Blakes 7 was my first love, but Babylon 5 had both Ivanova and Marcus (though I wouldn't say no to Delenn, Talia, Lyta, etc, etc...).

    1. Oh, I adored Blake's 7! Especially Avon and Servalan. A great bad boy/bad girl combo! :)

      I was never quite so into Babylon 5. And I thought Delenn looked WAY better before she got hair. ;)

  5. I choose the Star Trek universe (the original series/movies), but Han Solo is the captain I would stow away for. :-)


  6. I see stevie-carroll beat me to the Blake's 7 comment - wobbly scenes included! This was my first scifi as a more adult person. Prior to that it had been Dr Who from behind the settee (Jon Pertwee days) and Star Trek so I suppose the oldies are the best!
    Also mustn't forget Lister, The Cat, Rimmer and Holly in Red Dwarf!!
    So stowing away - Blake would have to be the one but did prefer Avon

    Littlesuze at hotmail.com

    1. I actually had quite a soft spot for Vila in Blake's 7, despite him being a bit of a wimp! ;)
      And yes, so much love for Red Dwarf!

  7. Star Trek was my first jaw-dropping love affair with a TV series. Moving forward in time (or backward) Doctor Who, Red Dwarf, and TORCHWOOD. I wanna stowaway with the yummy Capt. Jack Harkness.
    --Judy S
    j dot stonewright at gmail dot com

  8. Hi there! I have to say I'm definitely not a connoisseur of science fiction universes. I think I may be more interested in alternate realities stories like in the TV show Sliders, unfortunately no starship captain there to tempt a stowaway...
    But IMHO the hottest starship captain needs to be noble, taciturn, physically and psychically scarred Captain Harlock (aka Albator in my country) ;-)

    foebz (at) hotmail (dot) com

  9. I like Patrick Stewart on The Next Generation and Nathan Fillion on Firefly. YUM. :-)
    I was never really a fan of Captain Kirk, and believe it or not, I've never even seen any of the Star Wars movies.

  10. Star Wars is great. I will take Han Solo any time.
    debby236 at gmail dot com

  11. Star Wars for sure but I do love Nathan Fillion in Firefly!!!
    annmarief115 at gmail dot com

  12. I love both Star Wars and Star Trek pretty evenly. But if I had to chose a captain, I'd take Nathan Fillion from Firefly!

  13. I've never been particularly attracted to either Star Wars or Star Trek, though I admit to actually watching the Star Wars movies. I've never seen a single Star Trek episode or movie. So I'm going to have to go with other. :) My favorite universe would probably be Stargate SG-1. I used to watch the episodes late at night on re-runs, so it brings back great memories. He's not a starship captain, but my favorite was always Daniel Jackson, the "nerdy" scientist on the team.

    waxapplelover (at) gmail (dot) com

  14. Nathan Fillion from the Firefly universe is my absolute favorite captain. I will take Captain Mal any day of the week ;)

    (or possibly the newer versions of Star Trek! Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto sure make it easy to watch)


  15. If I had to choose between Trek and Wars, it would be Star Wars...just because I had/have more exposure to it than Trek. But I'm with many other commenters in choosing Firefly over all of them. LOVE Nathan Fillion, nothing like a space cowboy ;-)

  16. Star Wars for me....but I'd take Patrick Stewart as the captain


  17. I didn't really watch either shows/movies so...Star Gate SG1?

    humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com

  18. I have to say Star Trek & Picard. I used to watch this with my dad. Good times.


  19. Firefly, obviously. I have such a crush on Simon.

  20. I do enjoy STAR WARS, though I'm not exactly an addict. I also miss the series 3RD ROCK FROM THE SUN sometimes, even though it wasn't exactly sexy and did fall apart a bit in the later seasons. It was a good ensemble (launched a young Joseph Gordon-Levitt's career), and it was nice to see some humorous aliens for a change!

    --Trix, vitajex(at)aol(Dot)com

  21. Firefly! *sob*
    But if I had to choose... I really loved the Ewoks, so maybe Star Wars? But I had no desire to change channels if Star Trek was on... but then again, Han Solo...