Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Welcome Elenna Tylor

Greetings Fans!

Welcome to Michael's on this Tuesday where I'm happy to have fellow XOXO m/m author Elenna Tylor with an interview.

Please give her your undivided attention!

How long have you been writing?

I‘ve been writing for approximately 35 years, but mostly in mainstream romance under my real name.

Are you in agreement that writing fanfiction is a great way to practice ones craft, why or why not?

I think fanfiction is an excellent training ground because it gives you and audience outside of friends and family, and most fan authors are dedicated to detail and continuity, which is something very essential to telling a good story.

Would you ever write a hetero romance? Why or why not?

I write it all the time, it’s my primary focus.

What is your opinion on the “chicks with dicks” analogy? In your opinion, is it wrong for your males to be emotional or romantic?

It’s not wrong for anyone in love to be emotional or romantic. I think for most critics they’re referring to the more flowery prose some authors engage in, but that’s true in hetero romance as well as all others types. “Chicks with dicks” is meant to be derogatory, and the truth is, if this is the genre you choose, be prepared to deal with the negative remarks that are inevitable when you have straight women pretending to understand the male emotional mind and physical responses to passion and love. I have gay friends who have stated unequivocally that they are often insulted by the m/m fiction written by hetero women, and I do understand their objections.

I’m of the opinion that erotica doesn’t have to be real all the time to make a good story, what are your thoughts?

My thoughts are present the story for what you want and intend it to be. If it’s fantasy based, label it as such. The problem lies in being responsible to your audience at all times, if it’s not “real” then make it clear from the start.

Who are the authors that you look up to?

Many, but in truth, my reading tastes as eclectic and diverse, so I admire any author who can make you believe in them and their worlds while you’re engaged in the book.

What books are you reading at the moment? Its okay to give a fellow author a plug!

Gena Showalter’s Atlantis series and J.R. Ward’s books.

When creating your characters, do you have models in mind or are they totally fictional?

I think I start out with a model, but as the character’s voice becomes unique, they become their own people, not reflections of others.

If you write gay romance or erotica, just how descriptive are your in their sex scenes?

Like all romance, it’s as descriptive as the story dictates. Sometimes it’s detailed, other times it’s sweetly romantic.

As a gay fiction writer, do you feel that the trend is changing where it is becoming more mainstream?

Honestly, no. Apart from the fact that the audience is not “mainstream” there is in a very real way, a huge prejudice that still exists toward anything “gay” and while very sad, it is there. There will be no way to eradicate the intolerance of generations overnight. All specialized fiction has to accept that it’s niche, not mainstream. Write in a special market genre and you have to accept that you are not likely to see your book in a mainstream audience’s hands.

What is your opinion as to why publishers only want to group all manlove stories under erotica? Do you feel this is a hindrance to our genre?

Again, you have to be realistic – let’s face it, virtually all books of this genre contain explicit sexual activity, so what choice is there? Write a gay romance that doesn’t rely on the sexual element to prop it up, and the story would likely to be classed as romance, with the added subgenre classification of “gay fiction” which is where it should be in that case.

Recently, a writer sabotaged her career by answering a bad review on a blog. How would you have handled this and do you think authors should answer their reviews?

One of the best things you can learn early is to say thank you for the good reviews, and thank you for the bad reviews, and NEVER try to justify your work. If a reviewer has obviously missed a major point, address it if you feel the need, but then leave it alone. You only make yourself look like an insecure amateur, and you ruin your potential for future success in real ways.

What are your thoughts on the fact that some gay male writers discriminate against women?

I think that is their right and I support them. NO woman can fully understand the intimacies and intricacies of a male-male relationship. I know that will piss off a lot of writers of the genre, but that doesn’t make it less true. Especially when your female author is a heterosexual female. I’ve had majorly pissed off gay friends who hate this stuff, and I understand completely. The genre SHOULD be in the hands of the people who know it and live it…

I read a blog about gay fiction writer’s losing their imagination because they are writing the same subjects repeatedly, what are your thoughts? http//www.reviewsbyjessewave.com/?p=42883

To write well, you really need to challenge yourself and your audience. Dare to go new places. I rarely write in the same genre twice in a row, it’s what keeps it all fresh and interesting to me and my audience.

What is it about gay fiction and or romance that pleasures you to write it?

Nothing. I wrote the books as a challenge to my creativity, and once I discussed it all with gay friends, I left it at the two currently available. It’s unlikely I will revisit the genre. There is a full-length novel, very dramatic and emotional. There is a novella, dark and dangerous. I’m content with what the stories have achieved and that’s good with me.

A m/m novel by Elenna Tylor
Action/Espionage thriller
Published by: XOXO Publishing
Price: $2.99 (ebook only)
When Jason McCormack falls in love, it's not the liaison his estranged father would wish for his only son. Devon Windsor is a man with enemies, a shady past, and a reputation that's been well-earned over the years. It stuns Richard to discover that not only has Jason fallen in love with Devon, but Windsor is equally devoted to the relationship – until Fate steps in and rips apart the lives of all involved.... Richard stands helpless as Devon's car explodes into flames with him inside it, and Jason's world collapses without the love that means everything to him.... As the older McCormack calls in old favors and begins to investigate, he quickly discovers not all is lost, but can he get to the truth before he loses his son to grief and despair?
            Jason made it onto the sidewalk and looked around, his eyes searching for the unmistakable scarlet car. His heart was racing and he closed his eyes for a second, then did another, slower scan of the cars lining the street. He spotted the Beretta on the opposite side, a few doors up from O'Reilly's. Relief made his shoulders slump, then he headed for the street. He was about to step onto the crowded, busy road when he heard the Beretta's engine purr to life. He froze, his eyes moving automatically to the car as he wondered in that split second why Devon was leaving.
            He heard the sound an instant too late. Jason's ears, so attuned to music and nuance of tone, caught the difference in the sound of the car's engine. The explosion rocked the street and he stared in horror as the gleaming red car went up in a roar of noise and flames. Seconds that felt like an eternity held him transfixed, paralyzed on the sidewalk as the rush of heat rippled in the air around the destroyed vehicle. All his mind would pull in was the fleeting image of Windsor in the car before it went up.
            Jason started forward, panic and terror etched into his features. He felt strong hands on his arms and he jerked away from the restraint, stumbling with the effort.
            Richard felt his heart gripped in a horrible, suffocating agony as his son's voice cut through the sound of afternoon traffic. Above the blaring of car horns and panicked shouts, Jason's scream of horrified anguish was deafening. He tried to keep his grasp on the boy's desperately struggling form, and lost his hold when the young man tore away from him with a strength born of sheer terror. He staggered after him, as desperate to keep Jason away from the flaming wreck as the young blond was to get near it...

Genre: m/m Romance/thriller
by Elenna Tylor
Dragged out into the night by his young lover, Devon Windsor discovers there are a hundred ways to be led blindly by the heart, and years of being a top-flight operative aren't always enough to see the danger waiting in a blind alley...
            Tonight was supposed to be an early night. Stirring himself out of his slump in the window seat near the fire, he glanced across the room at the wall clock and saw it was ten-thirty. Jason should have been home by now. Worry was too strenuous an emotion to entertain at the moment, and he settled back down to stare blindly out the window.
            Leaves flew at the glass, swept along in a suicidal rush by the force of blustering winds. The first of the rain began to patter against the pane, a promise of a deluge in the size of the droplets. Devon was almost asleep by the time he heard the key in the lock. "Thank God," he whispered, determined not to crawl between cold sheets tonight, alone and frustrated. He just hoped Jason wasn't in one of his 'animated' moods and wanting to talk, because Devon had every intention of dragging him into bed, bodily if necessary.
            One bleary-eyed glance in Jason's direction told him animation was going to be the least of his problems tonight. Jason flung a duffel bag of books onto the couch and dropped the violin case beside it with a carelessness that Devon had never seen him use before. If anything was sacred, it was the violin. Now it lay discarded beside the battered bag and Jason was already launched into what was obviously a crisis, but at this point totally baffling.
            "Devon, you gotta come with me. You gotta help Alan or they're going to kill him. He's set up the meeting and there's just no way to talk him out of it. I tried, but he's afraid not to go."
            Windsor was dragged off the window seat and halfway through the living room before Jason paused for air and glanced around the room as if only then noticing where he was. His eyes wide and coloured with lingering panic, he stared at Devon in mild accusation.
            "Get dressed."
            Devon glanced down at the terry cloth robe he had wrapped around his body when he'd gotten out of the shower, then back up at the young man who was obviously expecting him to know what the hell was going on.
            Jason had that 'why aren't we already on our way?' look written so clearly on his face that Devon actually asked, "On our way where?"

My pleasure, thank you for having me as your guest!

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