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Greetings everyone! Today I have author M.A. Church with a most interesting topic: To co-author or not?
She's recently had some experience, writing with Julie Lynn Hayes a mm novel titled Be My Alien. (I have to say I love their cover. Yum! If that's the alien, I'll be happy to be his.)
To co-author or not to co-author
Well now, that *is* the question, isn’t it, lol? When I first started writing, I really didn’t get the whole co-authored thing, and I also had dozens of questions on how it would work. *shrug* I dismissed the whole concept, actually, as something that wasn’t for me.
Then I met Julie Lynn Hayes, lol. Julie and I became friends when she edited my Nighttime series. As time passed, we became very good friends. Then the fateful day came and one of us made a joke about co-authoring something… and there you go, lol. Our first co-authored book, Be My Alien, was born.
My first question was how the devil did this deal work? Would I do a chapter, then she do one? Who was supposed to take notes? Could we both write each other’s characters? *laugh* Julie was very patient with me, and decided how we wanted to do this. I also found this isn’t for everyone. Stories written by two people can be a thing of beauty… or a flipping nightmare. I did worry about the nightmare part, to be honest. I found out very quickly in order to work together the co-authors had better be able to separate friendship from business. It’s give and take, and most relationships are, right?
I can’t speak for all co-authors, and this post is strictly from my perspective. But in Julie’s and my working relationship there’s a level of trust, which is needed for those times when bluntness is called for. I can tell you, this is no place for egos. Julie and I are good enough friends we can shoot down an idea, or twist an idea, or expand on it… and there’s no hard feelings. And we’ve done just that. It comes down to what’s best for the book.
We also share the workload. Meaning we both deal with edits, emails, setting up promotions, picking titles, choosing the cover, and anything else connected with our book. We both wrote it, so why should only one of us have to deal with all the little things? It’s sort of like a symbiotic relationship.
We’re also comfortable enough to write each other’s characters. Our voices are similar enough to do that and pull it off. She came up with Taz, and I created Reed. Why didn’t I take the alien when I’ve written aliens before? For that very reason. Julie has more experience writing than me, but scifi is one of my loves, lol. I’ve written aliens, so we agreed she’d do Taz for the experience. And God, Taz is a cutie.
Julie likes to say I got her into scifi, lol.
There are pros and cons to this too. One of the pros is working with someone. One of the cons is… working with someone, lol. When my hubby is off, I’m not usually on the computer. That’s our time together. So that means for a day or two I’m not available. Of course, that doesn’t include emergencies. Then there’s the fact I still have one child at home. Throw in she’s about to graduate this year and things can get busy.
I guess my overall point is co-authoring a book can be good, bad, or downright ugly. Friendships can be strengthened or destroyed. The whole damn thing can turn into a PIA of major proportions. I like to think this has helped my friendship with Julie grow. We haven’t scratched each other’s eyes out yet, lol.
As I said, these are just my thoughts. J
A man too busy for love…
Reed owns an upscale men’s boutique with a naughty back room. While making a late delivery to a client, he runs into Taz.
A man on a disastrous date…
When Taz agreed to come to Earth on a date, he didn’t expect to be dumped and left with no way home. Then he falls into Reed’s arms—literally.
A coffee date soon becomes a trip back to Reed’s apartment. But when Taz’s stripes begin to show, Reed discovers Taz comes from a planet far, far away.
Reed never believed aliens existed, but he’s facing one now. What in the world is he going to do?
“Are you okay? Hello?”
Reed dragged his mind away from those sexy green eyes. “Ah, huh? What?”
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to fall on top of you like that. You see, it was like this. I was pushed, and you just happened to be there and….” The stranger grinned at Reed. “And down we went.”
Reed shifted under the body lying so contentedly on top of him. Hell’s bells, the guy fit against him perfectly. From the feel of things, they were both close to the same height. Which also meant certain things were… aligned. “Oh yeah, I’m okay. Banged my head a little, but I’m fine.”
The stranger bit his bottom lip, his teeth worrying the tender skin. Reed debated slamming his head against the floor a few more times in the hopes of rattling his brain back to normal as the stranger rolled off him.
“I really am sorry.”
“No harm done.” Reed sat up and looked at the guy once again. Well, not much harm, anyway. His libido just had to pick now to perk up, didn’t it? But damn, this guy was sexy. Reed struggled to his feet and held his hand out to the man still on the floor, looking up at him. The guy took his hand and let Reed pull him up.
“Name’s Reed. Are you okay?”
“Hi, Reed!” The guy hopped to his feet in a single, lithe movement, as if it was the most….world. “My name is Taz. Nice to meet you, and yes, I am.”
For a moment there was a flash in the guy’s eyes that belied his statement. “Good, that’s good. Glad to hear it. Well, I guess I’d better be going—”
A forlorn expression crossed Taz’s face and his pretty eyes clouded. “Oh.”
Reed hesitated. There was something about the guy that pulled at him. When was the last time he’d felt that pull? Way too long ago. Taz was cute, sure. But there was this look of hurt. Dammit, Taz just looked so lost. Insane as it was, he wanted to make it all better.
M.A. Church lives in the southern United States and spent many years in the elementary education sector. She is married to her high school sweetheart and they have two children. Her hobbies are gardening, walking, attending flea markets, watching professional football, racing, and spending time with her family on the lake.
But her most beloved hobby is reading. From an early age, she can remember hunting for books at the library. Later nonhuman and science fiction genres captured her attention and drew her into the worlds the authors had created. But always at the back of her mind was the thought that one day, when the kids were older and she had more time, she would write a book.
By sheer chance she stumbled across a gay male romance story on the web and was hooked. A new world opened up and she fell in love. Thus the journey started. When not writing or researching, she enjoys reading the latest erotic and mainstream romance novels.
Facebook: M.A. Church http://www.facebook.com/pages/MA-Chur...
Romance First Publishing: www.rfppublishing.com
Changeling Press: http://www.changelingpress.com/author.php?uid=177
eXtasy Books http://www.extasybooks.com/ (coming soon)
Julie Lynn Hayes
Julie Lynn Hayes was reading at the age of two and writing by the age of nine and always wanted to be a writer when she grew up. Two marriages, five children, and more than forty years later, that is still her dream. She blames her younger daughters for introducing her to yaoi and the world of M/M love, a world which has captured her imagination and her heart and fueled her writing in ways she'd never dreamed of before. She especially loves stories of two men finding true love and happiness in one another's arms and is a great believer in the happily ever after. She lives in St. Louis with her daughter Sarah and two cats, loves books and movies, and hopes to be a world traveler some day. She enjoys crafts, such as crocheting and cross stitch, knitting and needlepoint and loves to cook. While working a temporary day job, she continues to write her books and stories and reviews, which she posts in various places on the internet. Her family thinks she is a bit off, but she doesn't mind. Marching to the beat of one's own drummer is a good thing, after all. Her other published works can be found at Dreamspinner Press, MuseitUp Publishing and No Boundaries Press, and coming soon with both Extasy Books and Torquere Press. She has also begun to self-publish and is an editor at MuseitUp.
Museit Up Publishing: http://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php
Dreamspinner Press: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_222
eXtasy Books http://www.extasybooks.com/ (coming soon)
Torquere Press http://torquerepress.com/ (coming soon)