Today I’d like to introduce fellow Etopia Press author Elin Gregory. Elin’s historical novella Alike as Two Bees was released earlier this month.
Hello, Kiran. Thank you very much for inviting me to your blog today. Also for the interesting questions you have asked. Some of them have been quite tricky to answer. 🙂
Kiran: Tell me what made you want to be a writer. Why did you choose the genre you write?
Elin: I don’t think I ever made a conscious choice to be a writer. I’ve told stories all my life and started writing them down for the fun of it when I was small. It’s something I’ve always done. The BIG thing is that I’ve finally got a bit braver about showing the stories to other people. As for the genre, I’ve always written heroes rather than heroines and generally the hero had close and loving male friend with whom he had adventures. Finding work by people like Erastes, Alex Beecroft, Charlie Cochrane and Josh Lanyon was a huge inspiration.
Kiran: What do your friends and family think of your writing?
Elin: As long as shirts are ironed and food is cooked the family doesn’t mind it. The one friend I told about it was baffled and said that surely it was more interesting writing about women. But my friends online have been brilliant. Without their support and encouragement I would never have considered submitting a story anywhere.
Kiran: I’d love to know what inspired your latest release, Alike as Two Bees.
Elin: This was my inspiration:
I thought it might be fun to write about the person who might make something similar, about his problems and who might spark his interest.
Since the horses are so beautifully depicted I decided that the other protagonist should be a horseman. I like writing about men who have specific skills and I know a lot about Philon and Hilarion that I didn’t put into the story. I’m very fond of them both.
Kiran: How do you approach writing sex scenes? Do you find it difficult to keep them fresh?
Elin: I approach writing sex scenes with extreme trepidation. It’s not something I find easy and I know I’m not good at it so I avoid writing sex unless there’s some way in which it will enhance the plot or develop the characters. Even then I tend not to be very explicit. Sadly, anything with an M/M label is automatically classed as erotica whether there’s any sexual content or not, which puts one in the position of having to add at least a bit. Keeping it fresh is a huge issue because there’s only so many ways one can phrase the act. But I’m not worrying too much about it yet. I’m hoping that as the situation arises the differences in the characters involved will ring the changes.
Kiran: Do you have any plans to try your hand at writing in a completely different genre?
Elin: No plans for anything radically different in future. I expect I’ll stick with gay relationships, but I’ve tried a bit of everything over the years. Paranormals, westerns, fantasy. Even het romance, though that was a parody of Georgette Heyer. I haven’t tried sci fi because I’m not scientifically minded and I haven’t tried horror because I don’t like being scared. All the things I’m working on at present are historical but I do have ideas for a couple of contemporary stories. Basically, if I write one story to completion after another I think I have enough stories planned or partly written to last me ten years and more plot bunnies arrive every week. My mother would LOVE it if I wrote a story about a lovely old lady. Maybe Senior Citizen Romance is a genre I should try? I’m almost there myself. 🙂
Kiran: Who is your all-time favourite gay fiction author? Are there any new authors who have grabbed your interest?
Elin: Over the past month I’ve been delighted or moved or kept up late by Erastes, Josh Lanyon, R J Scott, Charlie Cochrane and J L Merrow. And that’s the problem. There are so many fabulous established authors that it’s taking me a while to catch up with the brand new ones. The new [to me] author I’m planning to read next is Charlie Cochet, who is writing noir mysteries. I love that whole feel – the mean streets down which a man must walk – and when the man has a secret about his sexuality so much the better! I love stories with a strong plot so tend to go for mysteries or historicals rather than romances where the difficulties involved in a relationship is the whole of the plot. I’m anticipating a really good read in “The Amethyst Cat Caper”!
Kiran: What can we expect from Elin Gregory in the future?
Elin: Pirates! Eventually. I work in a museum and in 2010 I researched and mounted an exhibition about Welsh pirates and buccaneers. I decided not to let the work go to waste once the exhibition was over. Now I’ve got 95K words of a story set in the Leewards Islands in 1718 about a disgraced naval Lieutenant who falls into bad company. It’s been done a million times before but I don’t care. I’ve been having great fun with it. But I’ve got a mass of other things in the pipeline. Celts vs Saxons in 7th century Northumbria. A spy caper set in 1928 London. A WW2 story about Dunkirk, the battle of Britain and the shepherding year. I’m doing a lot of background reading J
Thank you very much for having me on your site, Kiran, and for asking such interesting questions.
It’s been a pleasure getting to know about you and your writing, Elin.
And here is Elin Gregory’s novella, Alike as Two Bees released by Etopia Press:
In Classical Greece, apprentice sculptor Philon has chosen the ideal horse to model for his masterpiece. Sadly, the rider falls well short of the ideal of beauty, but scarred and tattered Hilarion, with his brilliant, imperfect smile, draws Philon in a way that mere perfection cannot.
After years of living among the free and easy tribes of the north, Hilarion has no patience with Athenian formality. He knows what he wants—and what he wants is Philon. Society, friends and family threaten their growing relationship, but perhaps a scarred soldier and a lover of beauty are more alike than they appear.
ISBN # 9781937976194
Word Count: 19,664
Heat Index: mildly spiced – korma rather than vindaloo
Alike As Two Bees is available from:
Elin also has stories in these books (click on the images to find out more):
You can find out more about Elin Gregory herself here:
And on Twitter as @ElinGregory