Saturday, July 7, 2012

Welcome Anna Mayle!

Greetings! Its been a while since we had a guest here since we moved all of them to Triad Literary but I have a blog tourgoing on there and IRM is occupied as well so here is an interview with fab author Anna Mayle!

How long have you been writing?
As far back as memory allows.

What made you decide that you wanted to put yourself out there to publish?
It was something I always wanted to do. I’d written full novels and series just for the sake of writing and that vague dream of “someday”. My aunts, Donna and Mary, pointed me to Resplendence publishing, one of their authors visited the reservation Aunt Mary taught for. They were looking for romantic horror stories and the genre reminded them of me. It was nerve wracking when I submitted my first story. Because of Hotmail and a glitchy spam folder, for months afterwards I received nothing and thought I’d been passed up. I almost didn’t have the courage to write and ask them for a solid answer. Now I am so glad I did. The woman I talked to was wonderful and had read “Bedtime Story for a Stolen Child” herself. She’d loved it, thought it was deliciously dark and sexy! The moment I heard that, I felt like I could breathe again. 

Before you started, had you done any fanfiction? If so, what fandom?
Yes I used to write fanfiction, it’s what brought me to the M/M genre originally. I was a fan of YuYu Hakusho, and while looking up pictures of Hiei (my favorite male character) I found a site called Hiei and Kurama’s Den, full of yaoi fan art, canon examples of why they needed to be together, and a story arc spanning hundreds of fanfics. I read them all and then went searching for more.
Soon after, I started to write my own. I’ll admit that my writing style has greatly improved since those days. I’m almost embarrassed by some of my early fics upon looking back, but there was some gold amongst the lead. I wrote about a slew of series, but Gundam Wing (The –Chan Series) and Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Anything for You) seem to be the most popular. 

Are you in agreement that writing fanfiction is a great way to practice ones craft, why or why not?
I think it is. It helps you to develop essential writing skills which are glossed over in modern school curriculum. Not only that, but you get critique from readers and can begin to zero in on your shortcomings. It also allowed me to practice simple typing and really improve my spelling. Beyond the base writing aid, fanfics also help you develop the flexibility you need for plots. You weave a story within an existing story so it’s great practice for later when your editor asks you for more in certain scenes, or when you need to link plots together or wrap them up. And finally it really helps writers to keep their characters in-character. In fanfiction, if you go out of character the readers will notice and complain. 

Did you ever do any Real Person Fan fic? If so of who, if not do you think it’s wrong to do that?
No, I don’t think I ever did. Not because I’m against it, on the contrary. Fanfiction of any kind is great publicity. I just don’t know enough about any real people to base a story around them. I know so little about them that I’d do better to just write original characters at that point. 

What is your favorite subgenre to write?
‘Paranormal Horror’, I love the freedom it gives you to create mythology and worlds and really twist the characters up inside and out.

Is there one that you haven’t tried that you see yourself doing in the future?
I don’t know. I tried ‘Noir Crime’ for the first time with “In the Shadow of a Hero” and though it was difficult, I really enjoyed it in the end. I think my next step outside my comfort zone might be a post-apocalyptic short story, I have one scene I’ve been tooling around with but since it’s nothing I really read much, I’ll need to do a little more research before I begin a real project with it.  

Would you ever write a hetero romance? Why or why not?
I have written hetero romance before, nothing that’s been published, and usually in an epic story alongside homosexual characters. I’m not sure I’ll ever write M/F professionally because I’m happy where I am now. Still, it’s not an impossibility

What is your opinion on the “chicks with dicks” analogy? In your opinion, is it wrong for your males to be emotional or romantic?
That analogy is sexist and offensive in my eyes. Why shouldn’t a man be in touch with his emotions? Men are capable of a wide range of emotions just like women.
What bothers me is that there are psychological and obviously physiological differences between men and women, and there are stereotypes that put environmental stress on both genders alike. If a male character is very effeminate or emotional, I find I expect to see some background or reactions from the people they interact with, because of those social pressures. It lends an air of reality to the story. So, far from the emotion or romantic nature of the male character, I find it’s the lack of that depth and reality that leads to the “chicks with dicks” complaint.

Your first published book?
“Bedtime Story for a Stolen Child” was my first published book. I’ll admit though, my greatest joy was when my second novel, “In the Shadow of a Hero”, was put out in print. It was amazing to hold my own book, bound and real in my hands.

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?
What a question to ask an author who primarily writes about Faeries. I think the mechanics of it do need to make sense to the type of story you’re writing, but not necessarily to real life. If your readers can picture it without being pulled out of the scene by confusion, then you’re good. I have a male character who self-lubricates, he isn’t human. I’ve read fanfictions about sex between a human boy and machine (Transformers, Gundam Wing, etc.). As long as I can visualize it, and it flows well, I’m okay with suspending my disbelief. In a lot of cases a little creative license only makes things hotter. 

Who are the authors that you look up to?
Edgar Rice Burroughs, for his prose and flow. The man could write a treaties on dry dirt and make it fascinating just through his word usage. Kahlil Gibran, because his books read like smooth poetry and carry deep and meaningful messages that are dear to myself and my family. Christopher Moore for writing modern satire that is both humorous and well thought out. I can read his books over and over, and have. Poppy Z. Brite, her visceral, dark worlds and characters that leave you feeling fulfilled and slightly uneasy. And S.P. Somptow, who can write in the language of nightmares and make me like it. To name just a few.

What are you working on now?
I was working on a prequel to “In the Shadow of a Hero”, the story of D and Nate, but was told it’s against policy to write about characters who are already dead, and they died before the published book begins. So I’m continuing that as a free piece that will be available to the public as soon as it’s finished.
To be published, I’m working on a ghost story about Allan, a lonely musician going through hard times, who finds the journal of a soldier from WWII in a used bookstore. The more he reads, the more he dreams of the soldier, until he’s even seeing him while he’s awake. Will the ghost of this dead soldier be a companion, or a curse? And even if he is doing Allan harm, will Allan be willing to give him up?

When creating your characters, do you have models in mind or are they totally fictional?
No, more often than not, I don’t have a model in mind. I start with a basic concept and through the course of the book, the character creates itself. Some evolve faster than others, some are harder to give depth to, but by the middle of any given story they’ve generally taken on a life of their own. From there, they finish the story for me through a series of ‘What would so-and-so do’ scenarios. A lot of times I’ll sketch the characters out and pin them to the wall by my computer screen. As they develop I can see the personality in the drawings, and it’s an eerily beautiful experience. Did that make any sense?

If you write gay romance or erotica, just how descriptive are you in their sex scenes?
Pretty descriptive, 4 to 5 on a five point scale. But I do try to keep emotion and character thoughts and needs involved. Sex for sex sake just doesn’t do anything for me.

As a gay fiction or m/m romance author, do you feel that the trend is changing where it is becoming more mainstream?
Yes, I think in large part due to the internet. M/M fanfiction has captured the interest of a lot of people, young and old. Popular media noticed the trend and television began featuring homosexual couples, in a few cases they even give a subtle tip of the hat to fanfiction, in some (Supernatural) not so subtle. Celebrities have come out of the closet in mass. Through all of this, back on the internet, Ebooks make it a lot easier for M/M authors to be published. The last ten or so years have been great for the genre and with the media being more open and the internet so freeing, I can only hope that more acceptance will follow. Not tolerance, but acceptance. It is possible.

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?
Possibly because it isn’t completely mainstream yet, though it’s heading that way. I think a lot of readers and publishers still think of manlove as a bit exotic. They equate the exotic with kink and kink with erotica, so those stories get grouped all together, whether it fits them or not.
It’s a double edged sword. By being labeled erotica, our reader base is limited. On the positive side though, a lot of people are drawn by curiosity or kink, to the erotic, so it probably brings in readers too. 

Do you believe it’s important for you to know the gender of the author?
No. It is fun as a cookie after the book has been read, but what matters is the story they write.

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?
Authors should definitely pay attention to their reviews, good and bad. It helps us to grow. I’ve had some reviews that break my heart, but most of them give reasons and give me things to think about, areas to improve. I believe that answering a bad review is fine if you have a reason to, a question for the reviewer for example. To respond to a bad review in order to argue seems in bad taste though. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions. If enough people think highly of your work, the fans will answer the bad review for you. If not, you should be learning from it, not complaining.

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//
The logic of that blog post is a bit one sided. It focuses on only M/M writers, but the romance genre in general shares many of those and similar themes be it M/M, M/F, or F/F books. Yes, some topics have been done over and over. That’s true in all literature; it’s very rare to read a book that in no way relates to the theme of any other. While romance does tend to re-use plots, it doesn’t only happen in M/M, and a good author can take a common subject and make it their own. Further, those themes are popular but in no way all that there is. Loss of imagination isn’t something I’ve noticed yet in this genre any more than others. Romance novels have been pushing past this issue for decades and they’re still holding strong. I think we’ll be alright. I have faith in my fellow authors.

How do you feel about m/f writers making the jump into the m/m romance genre just because it’s popular?
If they’re talented and can craft a good story, I don’t mind. An author’s motivations are their own.

What is your stance on issues in society like same sex marriage, DOMA, etc?
People are people no matter their color, gender or sexual preference.  In the past women had to fight for their equality, then other races, there will always be those who can’t see their way to change, but for the most part each time we’ve stood up for our rights as Americans, we’ve eventually received them. It isn’t going to be an easy road, but it will take us to a better place eventually. Marriage is just one of those rights all people should have. If two men love each other and want to pledge their lives to each other then they should have that right and the benefits that come with it. As for the use of the word marriage, that word doesn’t mean the same thing to people now as it did a hundred years ago. The world isn’t the same as it was ten years ago even. To allow gay marriage isn’t tainting the name, it’s one more evolution of an already changed title. Equality means just that. Everyone is created equal, it makes no sense to me that some shouldn’t be allowed the same considerations as others. 

Just how much research do you do about attitudes, sex scenes etc of gay men? What methods do you use?
I did a lot of passive research on gay sex by reading and watching media about homosexual couples. If I had a question, I’d turn to the internet. Http:// was a particularly helpful resource and though the original page owner has passed, people have stepped up to keep it going in his honor. I have no experience with sex, so I would have had to do just as much research if I’d chosen to write hetero romance, so I never thought overly much about it.

What is your opinion about some review sites not accepting m/m books?
A review site has the right to review whatever books they want and refuse whatever books they want. Unfortunately, many sites have a target audience, if M/M doesn’t fit, it doesn’t fit. For example, a site with a target audience of older, conservative women isn’t going to review comic books. If they did, they would have a very lack luster response bad for the comic, site, and readers. If there is solid evidence of discrimination without a cause, that is another matter entirely. For the most part though, I’d like to believe that is not the case.

As an m/m romance author or gay fiction author, should there be more m/m or gay YA novels? Why or why not?
Sure, kids need to know they’re not alone. Books with positive messages and role models going through the same things the kids are have always been used as a learning tool. Good m/m YA novels may help confused teens to realize that it’s okay to be who they are.

Your favorite gay tv show or movie?
‘Rent’, I love the music and the bohemian feel of it.

Your favorite gay celeb?
Not my favorite gay celeb, but one of my favorite celebrities, full stop, is Neil Patrick Harris, I loved him way back when but rediscovered him in ‘Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog’ (not a m/m role, but still so fun). That man can sing! If you haven’t seen it yet, I would highly recommend it if only for the songs.

For the men in your books, commando or underwear?
It depends on the character. Generally more have been commando so far but that’s more to do with the fact that I just can’t imagine Fae being comfortable in much clothing, let alone undergarments.

Favorite character in one of your books?
Redcap, from “Lullaby for a Stolen Child”.
 He is a killer, not at all repentant. He likes what he does. I set him up to be the bad guy but by the end of the book he had redeemed himself, still without being a bit sorry. I like his cocky attitude and the fact that he took over to the point that I was waiting to see what he’d do next even as I was writing the scenes.

The character you identify with?
Nicky Blue Eyes, from “In the Shadow of a Hero”.
I was raised to think of others before myself and try to make the world better by doing right, but there’s so much darkness. Sometimes it feels hopeless, like no matter what I do it isn’t enough to protect the world and people I love. Being good isn’t always enough, but we just push through, hoping maybe it will be, one day.

Nearly a year since the nightmare at the cabin. Life for Daniel and Leinad hasn't gotten easier, but at least there is something to say for familiarity. They fight, they threaten, but they love each other and in the end, that should be enough.
It isn't.
When the shadows start stealing closer, and the past begins catching up to them, how long will the two lovers have before the Fae in Daniel emerges, and before Leinad has to face his own demons once again? Until the harsh light of reality engulfs the fragile world they've built for themselves?
How long will it be until daybreak?
"Daniel." The soft, trilling voice sent shocks of agony straight to his temples.
A thick band of tension tightened around his head. He closed his strange new eyes and begged silently for it to stop.
"Daniel," Leinad whispered again. The words were barely there, breathy. The soft, downy inside of his lover’s wings folded around him from behind, and he sighed as Leinad lowered both of them carefully to the bed. "Do not fight it. Don’t try to understand it. Whatever it is you see, it is not something humans are meant to process. You do not think like a Fae. Trying to grasp their worlds and ways will hurt you."
"My head is killing me," Daniel mumbled.
Leinad nodded against his shoulder and rested his face in the curve of Daniel’s neck. "I know."
"Reading my mind now?"
Leinad chuckled. "You squint when you get headaches."
Daniel tried to smile, but it felt brittle and impossible upon his lips. "I can’t… I’m terrified, Leinad."
A soft mouth moved against Daniel’s neck, softer feathers caressed his chest, belly, thighs. "I am here."
Long, tapered fingers slid slowly around his sides, teased their way to brush over Daniel’s chest and pulled him back harder against his partner. Daniel could feel Leinad’s interest pressed insistently against his tailbone. One talon tipped finger flicked the delicate nub of a nipple. Daniel gasped, Leinad moaned and nipped at the tender skin of Daniel’s neck.
"What are you doing?" Daniel asked stupidly. When did my mind and mouth lose their connection?
"I’m making you forget," Leinad said calmly, and rolled his hips into Daniel’s ass. "I’ll make you forget your own name."
"I already have." Daniel choked.
Leinad’s motions stilled. "Damn you Daniel. The other Fae weren’t nearly as difficult to interest."
"I don’t remember being Fae."
The wings opened and Daniel yelped in surprise. Leinad grabbed, twisted, and straddled him all in quick succession until Daniel stared up at Leinad from his back. The cruel curve of his beak, wide golden eyes, round and knowing in a pale white face, filled his vision. Feathers flowed over his head and shoulders like hair. The hands holding him down were talon tipped and deadly.
Daniel’s cock danced at the proximity of the dangerous creature. It thickened, lengthened, the blood rushed into it in an attempt to make it hard enough to tear through the linen slacks the creature wore. Again, one taloned hand flexed, a deadly claw teased his nipple. Daniel squirmed and moaned. He needed pressure, friction, flesh. He needed Leinad, in all his terrifying glory.
"You feel it too, don’t you." It was a statement, not a question. "The consuming pull, the want, your body craves mine as if you were made for me, of me. No matter what happens, you belong to me, my creature. So lie back and give yourself up to me. Fear me, need me, only focus upon me." Leinad punctuated his command by rolling his hips and opening his fly to free his rapidly hardening need from the confinement of his pants.
Daniel trembled, a familiar yet strange moistness seeped from his puckered entrance as his body prepared itself. His anus opened and closed again and again, begged to be filled, to be brutalized, to be taken, owned, claimed. It knew its master just as his dancing cock did, just as Daniel himself did. Leinad glowed gloriously and Daniel wanted nothing more than to be the vessel to his need. He arched his hips up, and closed his eyes at even the slight friction that earned him. Without the strange visual world to distract him, the sensations were doubled and then some, and he keened at their strength.
"There, now you are ready for me, aren’t you."
"Yes," he whimpered. "Oh yes, please."
"Please?" Leinad cooed. "You want me to please you, do you not?" He took Daniel’s hand and brought it to his huge, thick cock. The veins stood in stark relief against the magnificent shaft and the mushroom head leaked a thick, clear liquid that coated its length and pooled between them, made them slide smoothly against one another. "You want me to tear you open and live inside you, move in and out until you aren’t sure which you want more, the pleasure or the pain."
"Yes!" Daniel begged and writhed for more, for the action those words promised. "Please fuck me."
"I’ll fuck you into forgetting. Then I’ll go deeper. I’ll penetrate straight to your soul and saturate it with my seed. Body. Mind. Soul, all mine. You hear me? You’re mine!"
"Yes, sir." Daniel trembled. Leinad stood and stripped quickly. Daniel didn’t even have time to feel guilt over the multitude of bandages revealed before Leinad was back. He tore Daniel’s pants from his body, scooped Daniel’s legs up to rest on his shoulders and surged forward until Daniel was bent nearly in half, begging in shallow, panting breaths, his opening wide and wanting. "Please Leinad. Please don’t be cruel to me, not now."
"Never," the creature promised and thrust with one hard jab, burying himself deeply into Daniel’s core.
Daniel cried out in perfect, blissful agony. "More!"
Leinad thrust again, and lights danced in the blackness behind Daniel’s eyelids.
"Mine. Say it," Leinad ordered.
"Yours, I am yours. I am yours!" he sang brokenly while Leinad plowed into him again and again. Daniel might as well have been praying, for the worship he could hear in his own voice. The thickness inside of him was unrelenting, claiming, unyielding. He had no time to relax, to calm or think, barely time to breathe.
The speed behind those deep thrusts increased, and he was bent so far that his knees met his ears while Leinad blanketed him with his weight and rode him hard, wet and wonderful. A scream built inside of him, but he had no breath to give voice to it. Leinad pounded into him so hard that he slammed into the bed. It still wasn’t enough. Daniel reached down to grasp his own cock, but the force inside of him shook. Leinad’s cock rattled like a snake against his prostrate and before his fingers even closed around himself he was coming, twisted and covered and owned. It wasn’t romantic, but it was love, thick and hot inside of him. It bent him, twisted his soul to its bidding. "I love you," he breathed.
Leinad came and pulled out at the same time. His semen coated Daniel’s legs and crotch as he retreated to the far side of the room and stared at him with those wide, inhuman eyes.
"Damn you, Daniel." He choked. "You weren’t supposed to say it."

You can learn more about my books and myself at
And all of the previous books are also available for purchase at just click on the cover to the right of the screen.


S.Lira said...

Ty fr being a guest Anna!

Anna Mayle said...

Thanks for having me. ^_^