CHANGING THE WORLD ONE STORY AT A TIME
When I start writing a book, I don’t go into it with the idea that I’m going to write something that’s dark, gritty, or deals with issues that I think people need to be aware of. I write, just to write. However, with every book, every story, every blog post, I see that world changer side of me poking through. Writing a book where one of the main characters is a cross-dresser, who’d been in an abusive relationship and then saves himself, was not my initial idea when I started writing Inconceivable. A book that deals with racism, transphobia, deafness, human trafficking, and adoption was not my initial idea when I started writing Unassumed. These are things that just happen. I can’t be too upset about it though, I have spent my life trying to figure out ways to change the world for the better, to help others, to save the world from bigotry, hatred, intolerance, poverty, disease, starvation, persecution, abuse, and human rights violations.
For me, it started when I was in the tenth grade. I was a troubled teen, fifteen years old, going on sixteen, addicted to drugs and hard liquor, running away from the demons and the pain of my past, of my then present, and my completely uncertain future. I was Richard from Unthinkable, a dancer, trying to escape the harsh realities of my life. I was Tommy, from Inconceivable, I felt like a cross-dresser every time I put on women’s clothes, in and out of abusive relationships, desperately wanting someone to see the real me, and determined to not let the ominous clouds ruin my part. I am Michael and Howell, from Unassumed. Michael, the transgender character who has a disability, desperately wanting someone, the right one, to love the real me, seeking acceptance, craving a true family of my own. Howell, the only black cowboy from the Tate Pack series [so far], whose past haunts him and makes him simultaneously want to hold those he loves close to him and also push them away to keep them and his own heart safe. Howell, for whom responsibility is just another opportunity to fuck up and who has no problem going the extra mile for someone who needs him. There’s Alex, from Impossible, whose love and talent for singing is one of the only things stopping him from falling over the deep end and whose mind is fixated on saving the children who he’d promised to take care of. Then there’s Maurice, from Untouchable, whose past is wrought with abuse, sex slavery, drugs, alcohol, betrayal, lies, pain, sadness, heartbreak, hurt, grief, anger, rage, suicide, death, hopelessness who is so much stronger than he can ever fully realize, who is just looking for that one person who will love him in spite of all the scars, physically, emotionally, spiritually and mentally.
Each of these characters I see myself in, each of them has taken a piece of my soul and a fragment of my spirit and laid it bare for people to read, review, criticize, critique, manhandle, poke, prod, jeer at, despise, insult, compliment, hate and love. I think that’s why every book has those issues in it. It’s the reason why my The Dom series starts off in Mark Me dealing with interracial romance, gay romance, homophobia, racism, BDSM, sadism, masochism, abuse, fear, and acceptance. These are the truths of our society. The truths of our world. I sometimes wish I could write a fluff novel, a story where the issues aren’t as deep as they are in the Damien & Roman series that deals with transphobia, racism, bigotry, acceptance, love, families, religious fanatics, surgeries, insurance, health and prejudice.
There are days where I wish that I could write something that wasn’t so heavy, something that didn’t seek to grab the heart of the reader and squeeze it. However, every time I start writing, my heart gets involved and I sneak in those issues, hoping to change someone’s life, hoping to change someone’s way of thinking. Hoping to be able to affect someone’s life the way LA Witt with Static and Carol Lynne with Hawk’s Landing changed mine. I think that’s something that some people miss when it comes to my books. They look for the shallow issues, or the ones that are a little deep but not too much, they don’t realize that I’m not seeking their minds. I’m not going after the top layer of their heart. I want my characters and my books to so embed themselves inside of the reader that the reader is rubbing their chest, affected.
Yes, I want them to get turned on by my copious amounts of sex, lube, cocks, balls, teeth, tongue, lips and orgasms. Yes, I want them to sigh over the love the characters find and fight for. Yes I want them to laugh and smile. But, when it’s all over, I want them to feel touched, I want them to be moved, I want them to be changed. Forever changed.
I am not seeking the mind of the reader, I’m seeking the heart, and I think that’s the reason why, no matter what my intentions are when I start writing anything, I always end up writing something else entirely. But I can’t say that it’s a bad thing. It’s my chance and my opportunity to leave a mark on this world, even if it is a small one.