Well, when I started writing Rings of Lust as it would eventually be called - picking book titles is not my favorite part of this process - I wasn't confident I would actually publish. But as the words became chapters, and the chapters became 31 chapters, I realized I had done it. I had written a book.
I'm proud of myself for following through. I've had strangers and friends read it, found a program that helped me edit it, and then worked through the process with Amazon to get it done. I also hired an amazing cover artist (Story Stylings Cover Design) and promotion team (GRR) that polished the final product and made it more professional. They certainly helped me to cross the finish line, so to speak. Should I have said reach the podium?
One thing I've never been good at is criticism though, and boy, does it take everything in me to not respond to certain comments or questions. There really isn't an avenue for that, unless they reach out to me through here, instagram, or facebook. It also seems passive aggressive to counter every opinion and nobody (including me) likes that. I mean, I should be (and am) flattered they chose to read my book in the first place. I just hope they stick around for the second book, because I think the choices that some readers are having a hard time understanding are going to be explained.
Rings of Lust was born from the idea of giving a past transgression a full book, i.e. an entire novel to lead up to and explain what had happened was. In most of the books that I've read that have had this type of thing in it, it is mentioned as an aside, an afterthought, an MC's memory, or a series of flashbacks.
Something big happens in Rings of Lust, but you get the build-up, you get to know the characters back then. I've probably given too much away about where I am heading in the following books, but oh well.
They will likely be more "familiar" to readers of MM romance because they take place in the "aftermath" of the "event" and involve the will-they-won't-they slow-burn(?) more traditional trope of the couple coming together after the past incident that I think a lot of readers love and enjoy. My book 2 will essentially be like a traditional MM romance. In that way, Rings of Lust was more of a prequel, but one that I wrote before the original (i.e. book 2). Is any of this making sense?
So, I hope for some this clarifies one really big decision in this book. I wanted the impact on the reader to mimic the impact on the character and I decided it was the only way.
Remember when a TV show had a season finale and you had to wait a few months to see what happened?
You should only have to wait a few months. I hope to have book 2 out by the end of 2021.
If you have any other questions about my thought process, I'd love to hear them. I know Luke's parents are an enigma to some readers, the amount of sex has been mentioned, the realness of the sex (as a gay man...well, I shouldn't have to explain that), and here I go starting to get defensive again. See! It's really hard. ;-)
If you enjoyed my book, please leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. I'm sure my constant checking of both pages will end at some point, right?