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Tell us a little bit about where you grew up? What was it like? Did that influence you in your writing career?
Well, my parents divorced when I was two, and they lived in separate states, so I didn’t grow up in just one place. I was born and raised in Texas but I lived all over the USA growing up when dividing my time between my parents, which was both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because I basically experienced what it’s like living in the suburbs and also the urban/ “ghetto” environments. It opened my eyes to a lot of things---the good and the bad--- at such a young age but it made it very hard to really have a place to call “home” and to make friends since I’d move so often. All this has definitely influenced my writing career, at least the early stages of it.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A veterinarian, a chef, a physical therapist, all sorts of occupations lol. I kept my options open.
Do you have siblings and if so which sibling are you: first, last, middle child?
Nope, no siblings.
The theme of this issue of All Authors Magazine/Blog is “New Beginnings” what does that mean to you?
“New Beginnings” to me means starting fresh and being brand new again, almost like starting over.
I find that sometimes as writers of fictional stories, friends, family and people around us influence our characters somehow. Did that happen to you?
Not really, believe it or not. My characters, some of them anyway, are pieces of me, almost like very exaggerated alter-egos of me. Then they take on a life of their own and become their own characters that are so wildly different from me and yet are similar to me in some ways too.
What is your favorite color and why?
Fuchsia. It’s a unique color combination of pink and purple. I love how it pops and says, “I am fierce.” I think it’s the fiercest of all colors in existence hehe.
What is your favorite food?
Gumbo. I’ve been obsessed with it as a kid and still am. I was raised with it, when I lived in Texas. It was popular there and I had it all the time. Unfortunately it’s a food though that I don’t have too often nowadays, and though I’ve made it many times myself, it’s not really the same as my aunt’s gumbo that is so amazing that I can’t stop smiling while eating it. Yeah, it’s that good.
Name 1 thing you simply cannot live without.
Music. It’s entertaining, it makes me think and reflect, it cheers me up, makes me sad, inspires me, and makes my world go round.
Are you the kind of person that wants to impact this world somehow? If so, how do you want to accomplish that?
In some ways yes but mostly no. I don’t think I have the power to impact the world. But I’d like to think that I can have the ability to impact one person. I don’t need to impact thousands, millions, or billions of people to feel like I made it. Impacting that one person to me is the equivalent of infinity. I hope I can do that through my erotica/romance fiction that has a heart outside of the yummy smutty scenes and the drama that goes with it. When one person reaches out to me to say “Thank you for writing this” or “I feel like you’ve written this story for me” or something along those lines, well, that’s enough for me. It makes my heart full and satisfied.
Was writing your first passion/love?
No, my first love was acting, actually. My passion/love for writing came after that, and they went hand-in-hand. I wrote a lot of short stories and poetry during middle school and then wrote a few plays during high school. One of my plays got turned into an actual stage production. That was surreal to see my words and my story being converted to the stage. Acting/playwriting was something I did for fun whereas the writing I do now is more serious and a real love/passion. I’ll never forget my first passion/love for drama and theatre though, that has never left me.
Who are some of your favorite authors?
My favorite classic authors are Victor Hugo, Oscar Wilde, Georges Bastille, James Baldwin, Halldór Laxness, and Charles Dickens, just to name a few. As far as living authors, honestly I can’t say I have many favorites but I do adore the works of authors who write in my genre, like Vicy Cross (author of Tuesday Apocalypse), Cody Stanford (author of Sinews of the Heart), Elizabeth Watasin (author of Sundark), Wes Funk (author of Dead Rock Stars) and writing duo S.L. Armstrong & K. Piet (authors of my personal favorite of theirs, Other Side of Night: Bastian & Riley).
Given the chance to change anything about your book, what would it be?
Funny this is asked because my upcoming release with Storm Moon Press, my bisexual M/M glam rock romance novel, The Man on Top of the World, has gone through so many changes. It was originally a short story for an anthology, and then a short novella, and then a novel. Thankfully Storm Moon Press, being so wonderfully “author-centric” as they are, has given me many opportunities to change it and shape it up to be the best it can be. It’s still going through that change as we’re going through the editing process. So if I wanted to I could change anything about the book now while we’re still going through the first round of editing. The one change I did, or fleshed out more, was giving the narrator of the story, my glam rock drummer boy, Jonathan Maxwell, more emotion, having his feelings become more transparent on the page so the reader can really emphasize with him, which is important, because the book is told from his point of view. I hope I’ve succeeded at doing that and that all these changes have paid off. I’ll let my readers be the judge of that at the end ;).
Is the world of literature what you'd expected it to be?
This might sound a little bit pessimistic, but I don’t believe in setting any kind of expectations on anything or anyone. Having high expectations can be extremely disappointing and disheartening if things don’t go as planned or as “expected.” So with that, not that I go into anything with low expectations. I just go in with a realistic mindset of, “Well, things can go really good or go really bad. Either way, it’s life, you win some, you lose some.” The world of literature is no different really. There are some high points and some low points about it. You can’t win everything and yet you lose nothing either. I’m quite thrilled and honored to be part of the literature world, especially in the LGBT erotica/romance genre. I can’t ask for anything more from it. I’m happy in this place, and plan on being a part of this world for a long time.