Ethan, thank you for taking some down time and spending it with us. Let’s start this off with a beverage. We have coffee, tea, some sort of juice (I think it’s been in here a few weeks) and soda. What would you like?
I brought my own vat of Diet Coke, but thank you anyway. : )
Well that’s being prepared now isn’t it? Charles, stand by please. Ethan, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I could, but then I’d have to kill you – which wouldn’t go well as I’ve been known to pass-out at the sight of blood. I’d be incarcerated for sure, just lying there for the police to find once they arrived on the scene. I’d be the laughing stock of Cell-block D! Plus, I’m pretty sure that whole gang-bang in the shower scenario is really best experienced through the safety of porn. It is fun to say though! Seriously…say Gang-Bang over and over and you’ll see! Even funnier if you use that Little Caesar’s Pizza-Pizza voice. Of course, it’s not like I’ve ever taken part in an actual gang-bang, so I can’t speak from experience, but lots of things you’d think would be sexy in theory actually aren’t in reality – being stranded on a deserted island immediately comes to mind. Have you seen Survivor lately? When it looks like someone wiped their ass with Blair Warner, you know it’s not pretty. Those people look exceedingly unsexy. Talk about some Facts of Life! It’s TV, people…give those bitches a brush and a bar of soap for crying out loud!
I honestly don’t remember if I said anything. I was alone when I received the email. I do remember a big, cheesy smile. I was also unemployed at the time, so there was a bit of a, ‘Perhaps this IS what you were meant to do with your life,’ kind of an, ah-ha moment that occurred.
What forces brought you over to the MM Genre and what made you want to write it?
I’d pretty much stopped writing for several years before I discovered there was a whole MM/Gay Romance thing going on. After reading about 10 books to get a feel for the genre and what was already out there, I felt like my writing fit pretty well. My style had always been more about what I thought was funny than the romance side of things, but they were at heart, stories about finding ‘the one’. It was kismet!
Would you care for some cookies? We have chocolate chip, peanut butter, oatmeal with or without raisins and a package of mystery ones. We have cake too. Your choice.
No thanks, my fat ass is on a diet after all the holiday face stuffing that occurred in and around my house. : )
Charles, you have the afternoon off. He’s very content. I’ll just sip on my drinks.
How many hours a day do you spend writing?
It really depends. I can go months without writing at all, then spend six months writing non-stop. I think a lot of that has to with GayRomLit & having an EDJ. It’s difficult for me to develop a regimen of any kind when I can’t do something daily. I am always day dreaming, though, so it never totally turns off.
Do you write right through or do you revise as you go along?
I tend to skip around a bit, and I do go back and revise as I’m re-reading throughout the process.
When it comes to plotting, do you write freely or plan everything in advance?
I do both, actually. I always start by just writing. For some reason, that enables me to get inside my characters head. But I will stop and scribble out a bullet list of other scenes I’ll need every now and again. How much of each depends upon how plot driven the story is. To Catch a Fox, which I co-wrote with Geoff was a very plot driven book, as was A Token of Time. There was pretty extensive plotting for each of those books.
For books like Sno Ho, and Second Time Lucky – where the relationship is the plot – things are less dependent upon knowing where the book is headed, so I do less plotting. Either way, it’s who those characters are that dictates what happens when faced with obstacles.
Of your characters do you have a favorite and why?
Probably Boone from the Sno Ho/Summit City series, he is certainly the most fun for me to write. He gets to say and do all the stuff I wish I had in the past or would like to do in the future. Nothing is off limits for Boone. He’ll say almost anything, especially when attempting to avoid being serious or overtly lovey-dovey. He is not a gushy guy.
Luke from Second Time Lucky sticks out for me as well. His character was loosely based upon a friend who passed away many years back, so in a weird way, writing that book was a little like being able to spend time with that friend again. That was nice. Sad at times, but nice.
Writers often go on about writer’s block. Do you ever suffer from it, and what measures do you take to get past it?
I’m sure I do. I sometimes wonder if that is part of the reason I’ll go months w/o being able to write. I think many times it’s about the need to re-charge the creative battery. In the first six months of 2012, I finished a rewrite and went through a hefty editing process for A Token of Time, finished writing Second Time Lucky, co-wrote To Catch a Fox with Geoff Knight and wrote Love in La Terraza. That was a lot for a six month block of time and while I loved every second of it, I do think it drained me. I also had stuff like GRL mixed in there, which sucks up a lot of time and creative energy. It’s a fabulous time, but it can wipe me out. : )
The biggest key to writers block is not to stress over it when it does come around. I avoid the stress by not contracting books before they’re finished. If I have no due date, I have nothing to wig-out over when I do get stuck.
Do you have a particular spot in your house that you call your comfy zone? (The place where you write.)
Usually the couch, which is totally bad for the spine, but my puppy likes to snuggle in at the hip and they don’t really make office chairs for that. As I seem powerless to resist her big, brown puppy dog eyes, the couch is where I end up most of the time.
When you’re in the mindset to write, do you put a sign up that warns others not to disturb you while at work?
I use music a lot for that. I have a plethora of play lists to either keep or put me in a certain mood. If there are too many distractions around I’ll simply pop in the ear buds so I can drown out the offenders.
How would you describe your sense of humor? Who and what makes you laugh?
I don’t know. I’m sure snarky would be one word to describe my sense of humor. I can be a teensy bit sarcastic, lol. But I find all types of humor appealing, from bitchy to pratfalls and everything in between. Satirical, Screwball, Ironic, Self-deprecating – whether raunchy or highbrow – I never met a laugh I didn’t like. : )
What is the most frequently asked Ethan Day question?
Are you planning to write a sequel to…?
When is the sequel to…releasing?
Or some other variation of the same theme. Usually about either Self Preservation, Dreaming of You, or the Sno Ho series, though I do get it with most of my books to differing degrees. The Dreaming people don’t ask so much as inform me that I need to do it, lol. I appreciate that folks enjoyed the characters enough to want more. It’s a very nice compliment.
No one asks questions about me personally; likely because I tell people more than they wanted to hear to begin with in interviews and through online commentary, lol.
What are you working on now?
Specifically, at this precise moment, I’m working on a contemporary short story titled, Northern Star. It’ll be my first book for Empire Press since taking over the small publishing house with Geoff Knight, and a few of his Australian pals, Kath and Adrian. Adrian has done several covers for Geoff and now works with Resplendence. He did my cover for Love in La Terraza.
Northern Star is a mix, some sad and serious to go along with the funny. Deacon is the child of an alcoholic mother and absent father and carries around a lot of that weight as a result. He meets Steve – an older guy who’s recently divorced and has been closeted most of his life. Steve has some guilt he’s wrestling with over the choices he’s made. I’m pushing to have it finished and ready to go in time for the launch of the new Empire Press website in April.
Writing is obviously not just how you make your living, but your life-style as well. What do you do to keep the creative “spark” alive – both in your work and out of it?
Walking away from the writing every now and then is usually the best medicine for me. Veg’ing out with a book, movie, a weekend on the couch with Netflix and TV series marathon. Chatting with friends online, on the phone or in person. Anything that takes me out of that writers head space for a while.
Aside from writing, what else do you enjoy doing?
Everything I listed in my answer to the previous question. : )
What kind of books do you like to read outside of the MM Genre?
I’ll be honest and say that when I read, it’s almost always gay-related, regardless of genre. I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that almost all television and film feels heterosexually themed right now. Not that I have anything against het-themed entertainment, but it’s nice to see yourself reflected back every now and then. Right now, it seems like books are the only place I can find the whole me.
Pick one: Scientist, Astronaut, Retail, or Horse Trainer-
Yikes! I dunno…they all scream work to me, lol. Can I be a horse trainer who just watches the horses? They’re pretty to look at, but horses are big! I try not to screw around with things that are bigger than me that have a mind of their own…unless they walk on two legs and have opposable thumbs to use when popping open the lube lid. : )
Any special projects coming out soon we should watch for?
I’ve got a lot on my coming soon plate. A sci-fi/paranormal romantic-dramedy titled, Welcome to Meteor Springs, which will have a little mystery/suspense vibe thrown in for good measure. I’m hoping this will the first book in a new series – depending on whether or not people like it.
Geoff and I have the second Fox book as well as a short story for a Zombie themed antho titled, Zombie BoyZ. It’s a project Geoff has pulled together which will include stories by Geoff and myself, TJ Klune and Eric Arvin, & Ethan Stone & Daniel Kaine.
And while I was hoping to have the third and final Summit City book done before GRL in Atlanta, it will likely be what I get started on just after. But Boone and Wade will have their wedding day! What that day will look like I still don’t know, lol. The final book will be centered on that wedding theme and will include Chip and Gabe’s story.
Can you please tell us where we can find you on the Internet?
It was a pleasure having you here with us today. Please come by and let us know how you’re doing from time to time. OH! And before you leave, can I get your help here in the kitchen? Thanks!!
And get dishpan hands!?! Madge, surely you jest! ; )
Yes, simply because you wanted for nothing so Charles has the rest of the day off. Once again, thank you for coming by!