When did you write your first story and what was the inspiration for it?
I started writing in my teens, the beginnings of what became the Hidden World series. It had an island that doesn’t exist, aliens living on Earth and all over, and starships. There were occasional forays into talking animals… Don’t ask me what that was about, I have no idea, lol.
Do you have a writing schedule or do you just write when you can find the time?
I write whenever I have the chance. Eating a meal, waiting for appointments, or, currently, after I get homework done, or when I need to take a break from the homework. What I write varies, from new stories, fanfics, or WIPs I’ve been working for years.
Briefly describe the writing process. Do you create an outline first? Do you seek out inspirational pictures, videos or music? Do you just let the words flow and then go back and try and make some sense out it?
I don’t use outlines, because I’ve always ended up with something other than what I outlined anyway, even with research papers. I when I can, I like to have the TV on while writing, but not to watch something I haven’t seen yet, and want to pay attention to. I’ll have Looney Toons cartoons, old British comedies, like Are You Being Served, Monty Python, Red Dwarf, or movies always comedies, or children’s movies. If I’m in the mood for music, it’s always a mix, anything from Nine Inch Nails and Motley Crue to Michael Bolton and Journey. As for the writing itself, I just let it all go, and then come back later and see what it looks like after it’s had a chance to think about it for a bit. Sometimes the story flows easily, and other times I struggle to add any words at all.
Where did the desire to write LGBT romance come from?
I don’t know. I’d found gay romance only months beforehand, and then I lost my job and with no prospects at the time in my town because of the downturn at the time, I was looking for something to do in between job applications. A vague idea about an alien prodigy in college became Jason’s story in the series, the first book I’ve ever actually completed, 104k in nine days. Scary what you can do when you’re unemployed, right? Then Adam, Killian, Kiran, Valerian and Nikita quickly followed, although none of them were written quite as quickly.
How much research do you do when writing a story and what are the best sources you’ve found for giving an authentic voice to your characters?
How much research depends on whatever bug is buzzing in my brain. But mostly when it comes to certain things, for instance a character in a Hidden World WIP that is asexual, I contacted someone amoung my friends who has publicly identified as asexual, and asked them to read the appropriate passages, to find out if I was presenting Olsen well, or if I needed to adjust a few things to make his character more authentic, more true to what someone who is asexual might experience. I’ll ask real live people, to try to understand better where I can. There are things that people every day face that I won’t ever experience, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get story ideas for characters that might represent those people at least in a small way. I’ve been fortunate in that most of the people I have asked to help me make my characters more real have been willing to read stuff in the middle or answer strange questions, like what does an orgasm feel like for a man.