Wednesday, 11 April 2012

My m/m moratorium

They say every bad thing has a good thing. I think that's correct, but I'm not going to extrapolate on my *other* lessons. Usually, every single problem or issue has given rise to a good development.

One of the strongest growth drivers are my friends, who have inspired me to work harder and not be lazy, even on the sentence level. Down to every single word.

Sometimes my ex-friends give me the same impetus despite their intentions. In this particular case, two former friends - and their friends, this IS the internet, after all - have inspired me very much to call a moratorium on all m/m writing.

I have had my issues with the genre before, as all regular readers of this blog know very well. I used to have no other way out, so I was kind of trapped. Recently, however, I've developed a number of mainstream ideas that had no chance to flourish because I went for the genre I found easiest to write. Ideas flowed, the writing was easy, publishing was even easier. Easy victories.

What will now happen is this: I will release Country Mouse. Then I will release what I'm currently calling Incursion (it's written, no need to burn the manuscript, although I don't currently expect to sell more than five copies).

After that, I will focus on my mainstream books. I am currently in talks with a German literary agency who sounded interested in my fast-paced crazy historical novel and a possible *punk project (or three - these things come in trilogies).

If these plans happen, they will supplement my other plan of publishing a number of gay historicals in English. All of this will happen under one (or two) new names, and there will be no links or connections to this one.

I may do further m/m books, specifically sequels to stuff that's already out there (I do have more ideas around Silvio), but as of now, these are low priority, which, busy as I am, means that they might not happen or might happen very late. Personally, I don't expect any more m/m stuff this year, and quite possibly none next year. I've created a solid body of work, and I'm looking forward to supporting other writers as a publisher, editor and coach.

I'm very much looking forward to evenings spent on the couch, watching a DVD or simply reading a book - things I haven't done nearly enough in the last two years. It'll mean spending time in the gym rather than race home to answer an email about any of my works, or do some photography or travelling. I might even take up reviewing again, and meanwhile I'm going to write big mainstream doorstopper novels for a different market, bringing to that work the things I've learnt in the m/m genre - all my hard-won lessons on sexism, trans* phobia and the rest.

It's time to move on for me. Whole new ocean out there. I'm looking forward to it.

21 comments:

  1. All I can say is: I wish you all the best with those projects :) both the new books you plan to write and the relaxing/traveling time you will enjoy :)

    I'm looking forward to read what you'll write. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think many of your readers would read any mainstream fiction that you wrote - I know I would. I enjoy your writing style so I can see that remaining the same regardless of genre. The *punk project sounds intriguing but unfortunately my German is non-existant.
    And there remains the problem of how to find books written under a different name - I can understand why you want no links.
    Good luck with it all and I hope you enjoy having some free time :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, and I'm really sorry. I do believe the world is a small palce and you might see me elsewhere, different name, and still enjoy what I'm doing. I do believe it's saner and healthier for everybody involved if I keep those bodies of work totally separate.

      Delete
  3. You'll rock it mainstream, Aleks. It's where you always should have been.

    I wouldn't count on the leisurely evenings though, travel sounds much more exciting.

    Good luck and thanks for the encouragement you've given me with my writing.

    Oh, and one of those five copies of Incursion you're gonna sell better have my name on it ;P

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess you're right. I was intimidated and scared out of it more than ten years ago, but this time round, I have more battle scars and more experience, which is surely a good thing. I also know a damn sight more about writing and the craft. :)

      Also, I'm leaving the genre in very good hands - lots of hard-working talent, who I hope will learn from my mistakes. :)

      I think you might like Incursion. It has shapechangers and weird technology. :)

      Delete
    2. Now that sounds like a book and I can get my teeth into :D

      Delete
    3. I hope. Can't piss off 20% of my readership.

      Delete
  4. I'm torn on what to say. Part of me is sad to see you go. I'll miss your m/m books, they are after all, my fave. But the other part of me understands, and thinks this will be good for you. You belong out there. And I'm glad to see taking it on.

    You're going to be so great. I lob all my claymores and hand grenades /now/ so you can take them with you. Rah Rah Rah. :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I'll still be around to hang out. :)

      Delete
  5. I'm sad to see you go. I only just discovered your work in November and it's brought me many hours of happy reading (thank you for that!) but I can't fault you for wanting to move on to newer and better things. I'm fairly certain that I'll eventually stumble onto your new creations in other genres and I look forward to that.

    The very best of luck to you, sir.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bobbi - Thanks. I do believe the world of publishing is small enough that we'll cross paths again (possible exception being my German stuff, which is likely going to stay in-country, unless I translate it). :)

      Delete
  6. It's not gender or tab a, slot b which drives a novel. It's the characters and the story they compel you to tell. Sure, the aforementioned items can be part of that story, but should they be the raison d'etre? Not for a good novel, even an erotic one. I firmly believe you will continue to create fresh, thought provoking stories in any genre with any publisher worth their salt.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Tibby

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree. I'll keep true to my themes and genderbending stuff, but I'm also looking forward to writing a couple kick-ass women, some even with relationships and romances. And there are some awesome adventure stories waiting to be told that are definitely outside the m/m box. I'll just focus on those over the m/m stuff.

      Delete
  7. And Franco. Let's not forget Franco. ;o)

    Seriously, though, write what wants to be written when it wants to be written. And, who knows, absence may make the heart grow fond again. No reason not to have toes in both waters, after all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep. I owe a few people some books, but I might just email the manuscripts to them rather than make myself a target to my former friends and *their* friends and otherwise keep the manuscripts in the drawer for my fun and that of my couple friends. But right now I'll do some mainstream stuff. Gotta work on a *punk series so it's all ready when I meet the literary agent next week.

      Delete
  8. I am extremely interested in seeing your ideas put to paper no matter the genre. My eclectic taste in reading material is what keeps me happy and entertained ;) As has already been stated by several people here, write what needs to be written. Tell the stories important to you and your muse or you will be miserable. None of us what that for you! Hopefully you will keep us informed on your projects so we know when to look for them. *hugs* And remember I am always up for beta reading!!

    Kassandra

    ReplyDelete
  9. Aleks, I still don't understand the difference between m/m and writing stories which have gay males in love. This is probably why I am not so great at writing m/m. M/M is a strange animal where people expect certain cliches.

    The thing is I write gay male romance because that is what comes naturally to me. I never regard it as a "box." To me it's freedom.

    No matter what, have fun and knock them dead.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'll read anything you write. Absolutely everything, in fact.

    (Actually, it's uncommon for me to read much m/m, so coming to your work and being so enthralled was quite a change from some of the other m/m I'd tried reading.)

    Shame I don't read German, but I have a few friends in Germany who'd be keen on the *punk stuff. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. I just found your Dark Soul books and Silvio thanks to a friend's recommendation. Have read the series 2x in 2 weeks and find Silvio mesmerizing.I really do hope you'll write more of him...now one of my fave characters. I read mainly m/m and Silvio is in my top 5 characters.

    I also loved Special Forces!

    I wish you the best in whatever you do...and whatever you write.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Congrats and best of luck! =)

    ReplyDelete