Interview With Diverse Reader
Originally posted 9/13/2016 at Diverse Reader
Diverse Reader – Okay, you! I have some questions for you, buddy. No, I won’t be mean. Even though your books make me cry and I have violenced my Kindle because of you. I do have questions and I’m looking forward to your answers. So let’s begin.
*rubs hands together* Hehehe, I can’t wait!
DR – Your release of Wes’ Denial is recent. Before that was Grif’s Toy. Tell us how these books came to be. The plot bunny that started it all?
JLT – Grif’s Toy was my first novel and, as some folks know, I never intended it to be published. What motivated me to put pen to paper was actually pretty simple: I wanted to write a story that was personal to me. One I related to. One I felt a deep connection with. This was long before I knew one could self publish books. After I’d finished it, and endured relentless – yet kind – prodding, I finally succumbed and allowed my friend Jen to read it. That was scary because of the manuscript’s personal nature, but compounding that was the fact that Jen is a m/m book reviewer. Her belief in me – and in Grif’s Toy – paved the way for its journey from manuscript to published book. Again, my deepest gratitude to you, Jen! Wes’ Denial, written directly after Grif’s Toy, has sat, for various reasons, waiting patiently for me to bring it to publication.
DR – I gather Wes’ Denial is the last book in this series but I’ve been told to never say never. Will there be more or a spinoff of other characters perhaps?
JLT – ‘Never say never,’ I like that motto a lot. But, at this point, even with as much as I love Grif and Wes, I don’t have any plans to explore the series any further.
DR – When you write your characters do you have to have a visual in your head? Do you see certain actors or something and if so who?
JLT – Well, LOL, it’s probably pretty cheesy, but I do tend to visualize certain actors as my characters. Oddly however, is they have a habit of changing throughout the writing process. At one point Paul Walker kept popping up in my mind as Grif, and Bradley Cooper often makes an appearance as Wes.
DR – I’ve seen what you can write. I know what you’re capable of. SO I HAVE to know. What WON’T you write?
JLT – Wow! Great question. And one I’ve never been asked. I admit, there aren’t many things I wouldn’t at least consider writing about. Indeed, one of the things I think readers have pretty quickly realized is they’ll never quite know what they’re picking up with a JLT book. *winks* I honestly enjoy the freedom Brothers LaFon afforded me. For those who may be unfamiliar with the story, it’s a raw look into a sexually brutal and violently abusive relationship between two brothers. Publishing such a book directly on the heels of a rather tame (comparatively speaking) Grif’s Toy set the tone for both the unexpected nature of my ‘next work’, as well as the darker/taboo subject matter I enjoy exploring. That said, I think the only topic I wouldn’t feel comfortable with is writing (graphically) about young children and sex. Indeed, referring to events a character may have endured as a child would be vastly different from actually writing about it. That IS my limit.
DR – Tell us what you’re working on now and in the future?
JLT – My next scheduled project is a second joint effort with the amazingly talented Louis Stevens . Our first book, Quillon’s Covert, was not only a critical success (our most sincere thanks to readers and reviewers), but it was also a tremendous amount of fun. Louis and I share a very similar appreciation for the darker side of reading/writing and that makes collaborating incredibly enjoyable and fulfilling. Once he and I are a bit deeper into the project, we’ll be sure to share more details.
DR – You’ve co-written with Louis Stevens. Are there any other authors you’d like to work with?
JLT – By definition, collaboration is incredibly personal. I, for one, couldn’t take that journey with just anyone. Not to get too philosophical here, but Louis and I share a deep passion for the same types of stories. But, even further than that, we respect each other’s voice and talent tremendously. Given that, I can honestly say that I’m very content with what Louis and I have built. Does that preclude either of us from working with other authors, most definitely not. In fact, I believe he may be kicking around another joint project – but I don’t want to steal his thunder with any premature announcements. *winks*
That said, I have had the enormous pleasure of working with a true literary hero of mine, Jack L. Pyke. Granted, it wasn’t in a writing capacity, per se. Many folks may not realize that in addition to being a brilliant author (her latest release, Lost in the Echo, can be found here), Jack is also a superbly talented editor. Her insight, dedication, and attention to detail elevated both Quillon’s Covert, and Wes’ Denial to a completely different level. I look forward to our next project together, Jack!
DR – Since you time jump in your books let me ask you this; where do you see yourself in about ten years?
JLT – Oh, gosh! Um…well… I guess I hope I’m fortunate enough to retain my reading audience. I hope I continue to grow and nurture my craft. And I hope that I’d still enjoy putting pen to paper as much as I do today. As unforeseen as authorship was in my life, it’s now something I find difficult to imagine not being a part of.
DR – Grif is disgustingly rich. I love it. So if you had all of his money, what would you do with it?
JLT – LOL! He is, isn’t he? One of the things I admire most about Grif is his altruistic nature. He is compassion personified. Without question, like Grif, I would work with/found nonprofit organizations which align with the things I hold dear: human rights, children’s causes, animal protections, and the environment. I try to support all of those now, without a huge bank account. One of the ways I do that is through myonline CafePress Shoppe. 100% of the proceeds are donated to the Trevor Project. So, if you’re looking for a new t-shirt or coffee mug, check out my shop with the knowledge that you’ll be helping LGBTQ teens.
In addition to the sincere humanitarian and philanthropic ideals, I’d also indulge in the more more base nature as well. *naughty grins* I see a stable of furry chested men at my beck and call who’d happily satisfy my every debauched whim. What? LOL! You did ask, right?
DR – Of all the characters you write, of all your books, what character would you say you identify with most?
JLT – Unquestionably, Grif. There is so much about him, about who he is, about what he holds dear, about his sexual kinks that are reflections of who I am. In many of the important ways, Grif is a gloriously fictionalized version of me.
DR – Not all your books are available on Amazon due to banning. So where can people follow your career and buy your books?
JLT – Gah! Please don’t get me started on censorship…I could literally talk for days, LOL! Instead, allow me to offer my sincere thanks for asking the question. All of my work can be found at www.JosephLanceTonlet.com.
DR – Thank you, Joseph, for being here. For writing wonderful thought provoking and emotional books. I can’t wait to see what you write next!
JLT – Honestly, Meredith, the pleasure has been all mine. Thank you so much for having me.