How Much Is Too Much by Liz Crowe – Guest Blog and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Liz will be awarding a $50 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

How Much Is Too Much?

Like many authors who count themselves among the “erotic romance” fold, I have fairly specific tastes when it comes to reading in my own genre. Given the limited amount of time I have to do things like “read” now that I’m branching out into self publishing and trying to find an agent at the same time I’m even pickier about it.

I have discovered that I’ve undergone a bit of an evolution with regard to sex in books both as a reader and writer. I’ve always claimed that “unless it moves the story along I don’t include it” in my books, and if I hit yet another cunnilingus moment for a couple in a book I’m reading that has nothing to do with anything but describing the act I will set it aside. And I stand by that. But when I go back and re-read some of my early stuff (yes I do that, mainly to see how I’ve progressed, technically) I sometimes wince and wish I had the opportunity to go back and fix things, including that egregiously unnecessary sex scene (or five).

I’ve been told by readers and reviewers that I really do excel when it comes to “sexual tension” (the build up) and have yet to get too many complaints about my explicit descriptions of the deed itself. Now that I’m on book twenty-something I take a bit longer to ponder my original claim of “moving the story along” before diving into the sack with my characters. Eroticism resides within a reader’s imagination. Sometimes, letting you picture or hear or taste or smell a sex scene the way you want it is the hottest thing I as an author can ever do for you—that is to say, I leave it out and leave you wondering.

In ESSENCE OF TIME there is a different sort of wrinkle to consider—the fact that the story is about two men in love with each other requires me to describe “that” sex act, which for some is challenging to accept. In order to make the attraction between Blake and Rob believable, I wanted to establish each of them as individuals, with emotions, desires and needs that were both physical and otherwise. They also have things in their past that set them apart—old secrets and breakups that keep them from connecting emotionally. Until they meet each other.

The fact that both men are entirely comfortable in their bisexuality was a plot point I made on purpose. I did not want this novel to be about them coming to terms with wanting to have sex with a man. They both already know that. It’s more about moving from the sex into something more. And for me as a reader there is nothing more “erotic” than going inside the head space of a man who is being sexually satisfied while coming to terms with the fact that he wants more from the person who is satisfying him.

I have gained many new fans from this book. It’s a “stand alone novel” within the “Stewart Realty series” story arc. It can easily be read without having read books 1-3 (Floor Time/ Sweat Equity/ Closing Costs) although that would give you a better sense of why the relationship between Rob’s best friend Jack and Blake’s sister Sara is so fraught for everyone concerned.

But that is merely backdrop for Essence of Time. Many of my new fans state that they have never read, nor would they ever consider reading, a book “like” this one (about men in love with each other) but all of them claim that it was so well characterized that it didn’t feel like a gay love story. Just like…a “love story.”

I hope you get a chance to read it soon!

A “take life by the throat” philosophy has always served Rob well. It keeps him focused, forcing emotions and potential relationships to take a back seat to his aspirations. But once every obstacle has been conquered and he’s achieved his goal—executive chef at a famous Chicago restaurant—he must acknowledge that he has reached his mid-thirties very much alone.

Blake has just jettisoned his dream job—head of a fast-growing craft microbrewery—to escape from the woman who shattered his soul. Arriving at a Chicago beer festival prepared to drown his sorrows before moving on he is miserable and numb.

Fate throws the men together altering their respective worlds forever.

Once Rob reveals the personal demon that has haunted him for years, Blake allows himself to fully trust again, and admits he wants a child. But a mutual attraction evolves out of a business arrangement with the woman hired as their surrogate, which has the potential to destroy an already delicate status quo.

But time is of the essence, and becomes the one luxury they don’t have.

An honest depiction of a modern relationship mosaic reminding us to treasure every single moment we are allowed to love and be loved.

About the Author:

Amazon best-selling author, beer blogger and beer marketing expert, mom of three, and soccer fan, Liz Crowe lives Ann Arbor. She has decades of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as a three-continent, ex-pat trailing spouse.

Her early forays into the publishing world led to a groundbreaking fiction subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” which has gained thousands of fans and followers interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”). More recently she is garnering even more fans across genres with her latest novels, which are more character-driven fiction, while remaining very much “real life.”

With stories set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch, in successful real estate offices and at times in exotic locales like Istanbul, Turkey, her books are unique and told with a fresh voice. The Liz Crowe backlist has something for any reader seeking complex storylines with humor and complete casts of characters that will delight, frustrate and linger in the imagination long after the book is finished.

Website ~ Blog ~ Facebook ~ Facebook Fan ~ Twitter ~ Amazon

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thank you for hosting

  2. Sorry I missed out on this blog hop. Liz Crowe is one of my favorite authors. Have to keep a closer watch on the promotions! Best of luck with this Liz.

  3. Michaela K says:

    I liked the author’s perspective on reading her own genre. I can relate to her opinion.

  4. Rita Wray says:

    Interesting author post, thank you.

  5. I really enjoyed your comments. I think sometimes there is just too much sex. A little is okay, but that is all.

  6. Thanks for the comments guys! hope you all get a chance to enjoy a Liz book someday!

  7. I can not believe I have not read this one of yours yet. What is wrong with me?????? Looking forward to it.

  8. kah cherub says:

    I liked hearing more about the author’s process of writing, and the different plot.

  9. I love that Liz is always reflecting on her writing skills and looking at ways to make it better. I don’t know how she can do it better…the books are amazing, but I like seeing that she’s very good at thinking about her writing.

  10. Interesting cover

  11. Lisa Zeigler says:

    Essence of Time is a favorite of mine and yet after reading both editions, I still tear up and grieve over the loss. Liz always draws me into her stories and then RIPS my heart out! There will be some form of HEA but not one you may expect. I’m a loyal fan and have read probably 16-18 of her books. Reading about gays, menages, etc., has never been something I thought I would enjoy reading, BUT, EoT shows a love so wonderful and bright, you almost forget about the type of sex, etc. It’s just a wonderful story and even though I’ve sobbed through it and at times when reading other books in the series and the loss is mentioned, it’s still one of my all-time favorite books.

  12. SHELLEY S says:


  13. Mary Preston says:

    A great post.

  14. Colleen Snibson says:

    I loved Essence of Time and I agree with Liz about the sex meaning something in the story line. I find that it is more effective if you get to know the characters better before the act, then it will mean more.
    Love Liz’s work

  15. I love the awesome (yes, I’m from California) combination of writer / beer marketing expert. Sounds like the epitome of your work not being a job.

  16. thanks so much for all your supportive comments guys!

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