Monday, April 14, 2014

My Writing Process Blog Tour #gay #romance

Welcome to my stop on the Writing Process Blog Tour. Let's get started!

1 - What am I working on?

I just finished writing the sixth book in the Saving Liam series and have started editing the second book to get it ready for release this summer.

2 - How does my work differ from others in the Gay/MM Romance genre?

My favorite genre has always been suspense (and many of it's sub-genres). I like a story that grabs you with the first scene and won't let go until the very last sentence. I try to write my stories the same way. They are intense, character-driven tales of men who have survived harsh and heartbreaking events and are putting their lives back together. 

3 - Why do I write what I do?

I am a gay rights activist who happens to write gay romance and my stories come from that place. I spend every day battling for the rights of people who are abused, hunted, imprisoned, and sometimes outright murdered because of their sexuality. There are a lot of happy stories about gay couples living peaceful and open lives but the statistics prove those couples are a minority in the LGBT community. My goal is to dig below the surface of the gay stereotype and show the reality underneath. 

Domestic violence is prevalent in the gay community. So is poverty. There are LGBT kids on the street even in accepting cities like Seattle and San Francisco. People end up in conversion therapy (also known as 'gay cure') every day in a misguided attempt to fix something that cannot be and doesn't need to be fixed. Suicide is a common theme. So is low self-esteem. It's not pretty but it's the truth.

4 - How does my writing process work?

When I get an idea for a story the first step is to flesh out the basics of a realistic plot. I jot down the opening scene and then four major turning points in the story that lead to a final climax. I write working my way from one turning point to the next letting the details of the story unfold on their own. Since a majority of the story happens without an outline it often goes in a different direction than what I had originally thought. 

When the first draft is finished I edit the whole thing beginning to end. I let it sit for a couple of weeks while I work on something else and then came back to it with fresh eyes for another edit. After that it goes to beta readers and my critique partners for comment. When it comes back I do a final edit based on their feedback and kick it out the door.

Thank you to the lovely Blak Rayne who invited me to participate in the tour.

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