Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Welcome Kayla Jameth!

Greetings fans. Welcome to Michael's. 

I'm happy to have Kayla Jameth on the blog today with an interview. Please give her your undivided attention. 

How long have you been writing?
I've been writing for just over two years now. My friend Sara asked me to edit some slash for her and we ended up co-authoring it. At the time, I was looking for some Samurai Champloo slash, but the ones I could find only used the characters' names and changed everything else. I was disappointed and commented that even I could write better. Sara insisted I prove it. So began my career writing slash under the pen name Kei-chan.

I also have a large number of m/m author friends on Facebook where I have an even larger collection of photos featuring scantily clad men. Several of the authors commented on how the photos were great for plot bunnies so I started the Inspired Writing group where members could pen a story to go with individual photos. In an effort to be a good example, I wrote a story for each of them. All of my original works are photo inspired.

I had never even considered subbing anything, but a publisher read one of my pieces and offered to publish me. The rest is, as they say, history.

Before you started, had you done any fanfiction? If so, what fandom?
I guess I already alluded to that. I have co-authored a Bleach slash and a Harry Potter slash with my friend Sara, the mistress of all things yaoi. I've written a Samurai Champloo slash of my own.

Are you in agreement that writing fanfiction is a great way to practice ones craft, why or why not?
I guess that is a matter of definition. Fanfiction is a great way to write for enjoyment. You write what you want and don't have any editors/publishers/proofers to please. So there is no real practice of one's craft.

Most authors start off with fanfiction and ease into published fiction, not the other way around. Not many published authors then go back and practice in the fanfiction arena.

So I would have to say that, at least, I won't be practicing my craft in that fashion. I doubt many others do.

Your first published book?
Again that depends on your definition.

My first published work is a short story titled "Legends". It can be found in the Breathless Press Ad-dick-tion Anthology. http://www.breathlesspress.com/ad-dick-tion-legends

Blurb: Austin promised his assertive lover a magical evening.  He has arranged to celebrate Jack’s birthday at the new concept restaurant Legends.  Will Legends be everything he hoped it would be?
Austin feels plain and maybe even a bit unattractive, seemingly unable to choose the right clothing and his hair a disaster.  While Jack is always perfect.  Sometimes this makes Austin feel unsure of himself and Jack’s affection.
Austin’s lover, Jack, is assertive and at times a bit domineering, especially in bed.  This tendency in Jack, leaves Austin free to explore some aspects of his sexuality new to him.  But how would he feel about sharing Jack with another man?

My first novel "Alexios' Fate" (Book 1 in the Apollo's Men series) is due out April 13th. It can also be found with Breathless Press. http://www.breathlesspress.com/alexios-fate

Blurb: Mature King Lykos has a sexy confidence that turns Alexios' head. Seduced by Lykos, Prince Alexios discovers a world of men he's never known before.

Meanwhile his slave Galen has gotten tired of waiting in the wings. He sets out to woo Alexios and win his heart.

Even Apollo can't leave Alexios alone. The young prince finds himself pursued by a god and in danger of a perilous love.

How will Alexios follow his heart when he unwittingly wins the favor of a god? Can Alexios escape the fate of Apollo's past lovers and have the man he wants?

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?
There is a thing called artistic license, but author beware. Overuse of artistic license runs the risk of being seen as unrealistic, unresearched, or even just sloppy. If there are enough instances of it in the story, I spend more time noticing them than paying attention to the story. It rips me right out of the narrative.

For instance, the warm wash cloth after every bout of sex. I've never know any man to do that. Most just roll over and go to sleep. The rare man will grab something and give himself a cursory wipe. And nothing is more unromantic, in my not so humble opinion, than the wet splat the thing makes when they toss it toward the bathroom.

I will put up with it the first time. But it should be glossed over from that point on. If I find myself counting the splats instead of the orgasms, there is something wrong with the depiction.

Who are the authors that you look up to?
Who do I want to be when I grow up? The big names of course! JL Langley, Joely Skye, KA Mitchell, TA Chase, Josh Lanyon, Ally Blue, Jet Mykles, Emily Veinglory, Drew Zachary, ZA Maxfield...

People who not only write well, but do it with class.

What books are you reading at the moment? Its okay to give a fellow author a plug!
I just got Deanna Wadsworth's Bear It All and Accidentally Beautiful. I just finished the Bear Talk Blog Hop with her so it's only appropriate that I read about her bears. And not just because we blogged together. Deanna has a wonderful voice and some hot sex scenes.

What are you working on now?
I am working on the, as yet, unnamed sequel to Alexios' Fate in the Apollo's Men series. The lovers attempt to define and solidify their relationship under trying circumstances. Can they survive a love triangle?

I've also outlined a third book in the Apollo's Men series that will follow another couple fleeing Sparta. It will be titled A Spartan Love.

When creating your characters, do you have models in mind or are they totally fictional?
I have a rather unique approach. I take an interesting inspiration photo and try to determine how the character reached that point in their life. I put a lot of thought into making sure the premise makes sense and is plausible. I hate logic bombs!

Once I have determined that, I have a basic outline and my characters. I'm a pantser so then I just start writing. Fortunately for me, my characters fill in all the gaps and give me insights into their back history as the story progresses.

I rarely have any physical descriptions of the characters, other than the intimate details, on the first draft. I go back in later and add them as I go. So don't have any idea what they look like initially.

Yeah, I know I'm weird. But it works for me.

If you write gay romance or erotica, just how descriptive are your in their sex scenes?
I usually refer to my works as homoerotica. My m/m sex scenes are very detailed, very graphic, very explicit affairs. And I try to make sure all five senses are engaged in the act. The prose ranges from highbrow euphemisms to very crude, depending on the scene and overall tone of the work.

Warning! For safety, you should be in good health and free from high blood pressure, heart, back or neck problems, motion sickness, or other conditions that could be aggravated by the explicit nature of these stories. Women should carefully consider whether the benefits of hot steamy mansex outweigh the risks of contributing to the likelihood of a resultant pregnancy.

As a gay fiction writer, do you feel that the trend is changing where it is becoming more mainstream?
I think Damon Suede's Hot Head taking third place in the Goodreads Choice Awards for the romance category says it all. He beat out a lot of big names to get there. Just being nominated for the category, in the first place, means that the genre is less marginalized.

Do you think it’s time for publishers to begin calling gay fiction/erotica what it is instead of m/m? Why or why not?
I think that the new genre m/m should continue to be called m/m. Gay fiction has been around for quite some time and it is a different thing entirely. Blurring the lines is not in the best interest of readers or authors.
Crossing back and forth over that "line in the sand" causes a lot of grief, leading to reader-author mismatching. A reader picks up gay fiction mislabeled as m/m. The reader gives the author a poor review because the story wasn't romantic enough, no marriage, picket fence and 2.3 children. Another reader picks up a m/m mislabeled as gay lit. This reader is disgruntled to read about 1-2-3 fingers, self-lubricating anuses and the warm towel, not to mention the 2.3 children.

It all comes down to expectations. The m/m genre tends to provide the romance. Gay lit understands that gay men may not feel that monogamous relationships are the be all end all. And neither group should be denied what appeals to them. Authors shouldn't get slammed based on assumptions and unrealistic expectations for any given piece of work.

Keeping the genres separate decreases the likelihood of reader-author mismatch and the often resultant flame wars over a bad review on Goodreads.

What is it about gay fiction and or romance that pleasures you to write it?
One of the things I like best about the m/m genre is the lack of a TSTL female lead. I have never read a het romance and have no interest in ever reading one. Why? Because I absolutely do not identify with the female lead. I have no interest in the things that interest her. I am a through and through tomboy. I have always preferred hanging out with the guys to being stuck with the girls.

The other thing I like is the men are less likely to be the strong silent type that is so stereotypically cast in het romance. They don't have to be solid pillars of unrelenting strength to make up for that TSTL female. They can be regular joes with flaws and insecurities. Kind of nice to have a broader range of characters.

And the Big Misunderstanding (BM)? Doesn't happen as often. It's still there, but there are so many other potential sources for conflict that it doesn't have to been the staple of the genre.

And of course, the sex is hot!

Name two male celebs that you’d like to see in a hot make out session?
I'm not so good with celebs. Have no clue who is hot right now. But I would love to slash Mal and Simon from Firefly. <Wipes Drool Off Chin>

Do you feel that celebs who are gay or bi should come out the closet?
Not really. I don't have to go around announcing my sexual orientation to the world. Why should they? They don't ask me. I'm not going to ask them. It's no one's business and the sooner everyone quits caring the better.

The character you identify with?

There is a lot of me in the secondary character, Halys. He is a mischievous, fun-loving, sensual creature not unlike I was during my college years. I wouldn't mind having a second go at that time in my life.

If you’ve watched gay porn, tell me your favorite movie and or star.
Hands down, it is Corbin Fisher's Travis! That boy is a power bottom par excellence. I never truly believed those scenes where the bottom gets off on being fucked until I saw Travis in action.

Alexios' Fate Blurb: The mature King Lykos has a sexy confidence that turns Alexios' head. Seduced by Lykos, Prince Alexios discovers a world of men he's never known before.
Meanwhile his slave Galen has gotten tired of waiting in the wings. He sets out to woo Alexios and win his heart.
Even Apollo can't leave Alexios alone. The young prince finds himself pursued by a god and in danger of a perilous love.
How will Alexios follow his heart when he unwittingly wins the favor of a god? Can Alexios escape the fate of Apollo's past lovers and have the man he wants?

Alexios' father, still red-faced and with fists clenched, followed him into his room and glared at his slave Galen until the young man left. Demetrios twitched the mantle covering Alexios with contempt, almost as if touching the offending garment sullied his hand.

"Explain to me why my son comes back to me in Lykos' care, wearing another man's mantle? I'm sure the other kings want to know as well!" His voice took on a dangerous quality, "Don't play the wanton and act like you're already his."

Alexios jerked his head up, thrumming with restrained anger. "I am a prince of Dicaea! I belong to no one!"

"See that you keep yourself that way. I intend for you to make a marriage alliance. Whichever of those men becomes your father-in-law will have the mentoring of you." His father stalked to the door before turning. "I expect you to compete with the other youths at the games for your coming-of-age."

Feeling like a prize bull being offered to the highest bidder, Alexios tore the mantle from his body. He stood in no more than he would be wearing when he competed. Alexios realized his father not only wanted him to show his prowess, his father also wanted him on exhibit for the other kings.

"The alliance means so much you don't care if you have to put me on display to get what you want?"

"This alliance is more important than your wounded sensibilities. A betrothal will offer us the support we need to expand. A prince's loyalty is to his father. You will obey me in this!"

In spite of his father, his cock filled as he envisioned being on parade before Lykos and the other men. The fantasy of their eyes watching every move his body made gave rise to a shivery feeling at his core. Would they only have eyes for him or would they compare him to the other oiled bodies competing with him for the laurel? Would the victor also become the prize in some fashion?

The blood left Demetrios' face. "That...that man...excites you, doesn't he? Keep away from Lykos!" his father stuttered with a burgeoning air of alarm.

The dismayed man staggered through the doorway. He shoved past the slave standing in the hall, without thought or seeming awareness of his surroundings. Galen bowed to the king and kept an eye on Alexios' father as he stormed down the corridor.

Alexios still stood in openmouthed shock when Galen reentered the room, trying to fathom what his father's outburst had been all about. Bemused, Alexios wondered why his father wanted to keep him away from Lykos. For a moment, he had thought his father was jealous.


"Never mind him. He's not angry at you."

The air cooled his heated skin as he searched for a tunic to cover his nakedness. Galen reached past him to pick up the garment first. His arm brushed against Alexios' sensitive skin and a shudder ran down Alexios' frame.

Alexios turned and caught the look of surprise on his slave's face. Galen's carefully schooled his features to exhibited polite interest, nothing more.

Alexios gazed at the slave with speculation, contemplating what he knew of the man. Galen saw to all his needs, often before he realized he wanted something. The young man served him with such devotion Alexios had never been forced to rebuke him. In fact, Galen went to greater lengths than necessary, certainly more than duty required. He never wondered about the depth of Galen's dedication before. Why was Galen so diligent?

Taking the chiton from Galen's hands, Alexios replaced the garment on the chest at the foot of his bed. He feasted his eyes on the hale and comely slave. He had intended to slake his lust in one of the slave girls, but his own slave stood before him. Maybe he didn't need to go in search of someone else.

"Do you know what to do with this?" He gestured at his engorged cock.

An enigmatic mix of emotions washed across the young man's face. Distaste, hope, and despair jumbled together to distort the handsome features. Without a word, Galen slid to his knees and his hand stretched out to Alexios' cock.

About Me:
A knight and a former princess, Kayla Jameth now spends her time writing m/m romance. A true Renaissance woman, she has done everything from cross stitch like a proper lady to welding with the best of them. An eclectic life has left her with a unique understanding of the world inhabited by men and an appreciation for the difficulties faced by men in m/m relationships. It is her devout wish that her experiences translate into a richer telling of such tales. A minor in classical history left her with a special love of ancient history, especially during the classical period.


BLMorticia said...

TY for coming Kayla!

Kayla Jameth said...

Thank you for having me. {Bats Eyes}