A couple weeks ago I was having a talk (for lack of a better term) with a couple of author friends I met on Twitter. One author made the comment that for the first time, she’d actually created a character that she might have considered…er…sleeping with. That one tweet sparked a conversation that got me thinking about the differences in writing processes. I, for one, can’t not want to sleep with my characters. I guess for me I feel like if I don’t want to sleep with them, then why would their hero/heroine (mostly other hero, in my case)? There has to be something there for me to connect with in order for me to write that character the way I see them. If I can’t connect, the story ultimately fails.
But thinking about wanting to sleep with my characters took me a step deeper. With the very rare exception (we’re talking only one manuscript, so far) over the course of the story, I manage somehow to fall in love with them. That may sound demented, but it’s true. It’s just like falling in love with another person. You’re terrified at first, then you start to allow yourself to believe it the tiniest little bit, and then BOOM! You’re head over heels with no way out. To clarify a bit how that applies to my writing process, when I start the story off, they’re just two very attractive strangers. Then about 10k in, when I finally have a fairly decent idea of what’s going to happen in the rest of the story, I start to get that niggling feeling in my gut, usually because I do know what’s coming, and I don’t want to have to be the big bad author that puts them through that. Then, about half-way through, I start to feel more comfortable with the proceedings, and power along, even though I’m still apprehensive about what’s coming. But then, once I hit that ¾’s mark, there’s no turning back, I’m running full speed, fears be damned and heading blindly into the unknown (I never know how it’ll actually end until I get there). The fact of the matter is, by the time I get to that point, I’m not really telling the story anymore. I’m putting it on paper, sure, but it’s the characters who are actually telling me what to do. And I trust them, because I know they aren’t going to let me do their story an injustice.
And that’s exactly the way it happened with Sparks Fly. It started with the tiny question in the back of my mind: how can I make the world end that everyone hasn’t done a thousand times before? And then it came to me: no more women, no more human race. That’s the whole basis for the book.
I loved Lincoln and Eduardo a lot. I hope you will, too. It’s a wild ride.
Sparks Fly releases from Etopia Press on August 5. Leave a comment below for a chance to win a copy on release day!
Brien Michaels was born at an early age. In the time that he is not writing, he enjoys reading, eating, and terrorizing young wood nymphs. After an altercation with a person in a mask, he fled to the hills and now lives in seclusion with the voices in his head. He currently writes dark fiction, erotic fiction, and dark erotic fiction for the creatures that have moved in under his bed.
The Mayans had it right. The apocalypse began on December 21, 2012, but the world slipped into darkness in a way even the most pessimistic of doomsdayers could never have foreseen. The Earth’s population had been flourishing as usual, but in the blink of an eye, it was cut by more than half. By the morning of December 22, every female on the planet was dead.
In a world with no women, what are the men to do? Some swear off sex forever. Some take their own lives. But some turn to the remaining men, desperate for sexual contact. Eduardo Harvelle is one of those men, but when he meets Lincoln James on board The Miracle, a cruise ship promising to take the two of them as well as dozens of other men to meet the last woman in existence, his entire perspective changes.
Their passion rocks the boat every chance they get, but when passenger’s corpses start turning up wherever Lincoln is, all eyes are on him. Could the only man Eduardo has ever allowed himself to have feelings for be a murderer? Or are there more sinister forces at work?