Leslie: Amy, one of the questions I like to ask to those who write M/M is how did you choose to write within this genre? What made you decide to take this course other than “traditional” or M/F romance, paranormal, or erotica?
Actually, I started writing urban fantasy—my first few self-published books (which will soon be re-released via DSP Productions) were M/M/F ménage, with the initial relationship between a vampire, a sorceress, and an elf. And as for how it happened? Well, lots of things were in the air at the time—the first threat against gay marriage in California, that first infatuation with the omnisexuality of vampires, and a dawning awareness on my part that human relationships were not as simple as a pink bow and a blue bow and that’s the end of the story. Suddenly, in what seemed to be a burgeoning relationship between a male vampire and a sorceress, there appeared a very real, very poignant open relationship between the vampire and a male elf—one that had lasted nearly 150 years.
Exploring that relationship—and other same sex relationships as I continued to write The Little Goddess series, and then The Bitter Moon saga had me very interested to see if I could write a strictly contemporary romance between two men. When a random prompt came up on Twitter from Lynn West, chief editor of Dreamspinner Press, I answered for the sheer hell of it. Although I’m about to write the fifth book of the Little Goddess series, I have to confess, I will never stop writing M/M completely. I really love it.
Leslie: How important is it to you when you write to know how your book ends before you write it, or do you just let the story come to you as you go along?
I sit down with characters, a basic conflict, a beginning, middle, and end—all subject to change. If what is organic to the character means any scene I’d pre-planned won’t work? Well that changes. But that doesn’t change that I usually know the basics before I ever break paper.
Leslie: Who are your main inspirations when it comes to sparking your creativity? I guess I am asking are they fellow authors, fans, street teams, friends or family?
Well, actually my favorite inspirations were the Romantic poets. They emphasized that we leave our hearts and minds open for any and all impressions, and that our emotions are often more reliable than our reason. As a general philosophy, this works fairly well—it means I can be inspired by anything that moves me—including all of the above ;-)
Leslie: Think back to that first book! What made you decide to write it, and take the leap to publish it? Also, did you always want to be a writer?
LOL—this one is easy.
Yes, I always wanted to be a writer. I wanted to be a writer after I graduated from school, but my parents offered to pay for a post-graduate program. I chose teaching, they bailed, and I was stuck teaching for twenty years—but honestly, it was wonderful life experience, and I regret very little of my time as a teacher.
To that end, when all of my teaching friends went to school for their MA’s, I figured I should probably do that too—it was the only way to get a raise. Except they were getting their MA’s in administration, and the idea of sitting through those classes made me simultaneously break out in hives and want to throw up. I went to get my masters degree in creative writing instead. In the fall of 2001, I was supposed to choose project. I dropped out of the program because, well, I still had small children, and the world felt very frightening in the fall of 2001. But the project I would have chosen was going to be a full-length novel. That was the year I wrote a 25 page short story called Vulnerable. Even though I was no longer in the program after that, I felt the urge to continue on with that story, and that was my vampire, elf, sorceress ménage.
Leslie: Final question(s)… so, I guess I will make this one count! Which book are you most proud of so far? Is there anything exciting planned for the future?
Right now? I’m most proud of a book that’s going to be released in May. It’s called Immortal, and it’s complex and painful and the ending gutted me. I was also incredibly proud of both Bells and Beneath the Stain.
I also have an installment in Riptide’s Blue Water Bay series that I sort of love, called The Deep of the Sound, as well as the fourth book in the Johnnies series, called Black John. So, yeah- always something working!
I’m also starting, probably near the end of this month, Quickening. This book is the long awaited sequel of The Little Goddess series, and I’m so excited about getting to write ménage and urban fantasy again.
***Bonus*** If you can, describe to us a typical writing day!
Okay—wake up, check e-mail.
Get kids to school—we’re usually late.
Get home and work on administrative stuff until 10 or so.
If it’s a workout day, go to aqua aerobics.
If it’s not, take a shower and go walking around the block with the dogs.
Get home, work until I fall asleep.
Wake up, work until I get the kids.
Get home, work until soccer/dance/social obligation.
Get home, feed troops. (Often this is Chipotle or Noodle House, so don’t feel too bad for me.)
Finish feeding, sit down for one-two hours of mandatory family time.
Everybody goes to bed, sit down to work.
Work until 12-1 a.m., go to bed.
Wake up, do it again.
Leslie: Thank you again, Amy for not only that small look into your life, but to some of the questions that I had been wanting to ask. Good luck with this release and all of your future endeavors and we look forward to seeing you once again here with us at Evermore Books.
See more at: http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/bells-of-times-square#sthash.QpPUTRnP.dpuf