Welcome! I’m so excited to have you here, ZAM. Oh, can I call you ZAM?
1. How did you get started writing m/m romance? Did you always want to be a writer?
I did always want to be a writer, I used to stay up late at night scribbling furiously in longhand (I still love an ultra sharp no. 2 pencil with a pristine eraser like nothing else) until my mother made me turn out the lights.
2. Did you have any early influences either in this genre or any other?
I think my first love was romance, and my favorite author in romance is Laura Kinsale. She was so crazy good. I just love her work. I still reread them and believe she was simply the best, ever. Unbelievably intricate plots, heroes to die for, prose that sings. Crazy good.
3. What is the hardest part about writing for you?
For me, writing is a series of different jobs. It's not just
writing, but writing consistently, editing, rewriting, submitting, the publisher/editorial process, promotion, and accepting other people's opinions about the work. The hardest part is promotion, by far.
4. Does any one of your books hold a special place in your heart?
Crossing Borders was my first, and it was such a flight of fancy. I never imagined that I'd get it published, much less put into print or that anyone would buy it. That it's been embraced the way it has was unbelievable to me.
5. Tell us a little about your Christmas story. Is it a new story or related to one of your other books?
I have a Christmas story with MLR called A Picture Perfect Holiday, and the characters aren't from any of my other novels. I was determined to create a story that warms you like a cup of hot cocoa on a cold winter day. I also have a Hanukkah related story coming out from Loose Id on December 20th, and that one is a novella length historical, set in 1955, which is a little darker and more bittersweet in nature. That one is called Secret Light.
6. Do you have a writing quirk? (ie computer has to be facing a certain way, cup of coffee on the left, certain music playing, etc)
If I had a quirk right now it would be writing on my laptop in bed (because it's been cool here.) That has to end soon, though, because it's so lazy, I can't even stand myself. I don't like to have music playing, although I often listen to music to set a mood. Once I start writing though, I like quiet, otherwise I write to the music, and not the story, if that makes sense.
7. Do you have any writing or reading squicks? Things you don’t like to read and can’t see yourself ever writing?
I have to laugh about this. I'm squicked by twincest. (That's because I'm the mother of twin boys.) I have friends who find it really sexy. I just can't do it. I'd never sleep again. *shudders*
8. There’s been a lot of talk about the genre just rehashing old themes and nothing new being brought into it by new authors, what are your thoughts on that?
I think there's nothing new. What each author brings to the party is his or her experience, voice, mindset, originality, and creativity. Ultimately, it's up to readers to decide what they want to read, and many, many readers find comfort in themes that are familiar. For example, I can't pass up a cozy mystery. Just how many eccentric British nationals can you bring in to solve the poisoning crime in a different way? I don't know. I just know I haven't reached my limit yet.
9. What’s next on your plate? What are you working on?
I have three big projects in the works, a romantic comedy, a darker romantic suspense story, and a super seekrit project with Heidi Cullinan. I have a couple more in the works I'm not talking about yet, in case I jinx them. Stay Tuned!
10. Finally – a few quick choices:
a. Coffee or tea Coffee
b. Dog or cat Dog
c. Beach or mountains Beach
d. Pecs or abs Abs
e. Smile or eyes Smiles
f. Cowboys or rockstars Rockstars
g. Who would win in a fight – vampires or werewolves? And why. Vampires would win a fight because their very nature is in opposition to creation and it makes them tough, sneaky motherfuckers.
ZAM has graciously offered up a copy of her holiday story, A Picture Perfect Holiday, to one lucky commenter on my blog, OR, you may choose any of her holiday titles or anything from her backlist. BE SURE TO INCLUDE YOU NAME AND EMAIL ADDRESS IN YOUR COMMENT. J
CONTEST CLOSES AND WINNER WILL BE DRAWN ON SATURDAY, DECEMBER 17.
If you don’t win and haven’t already done so, you can pick it up at MLR Press A Picture Perfect Holiday
Be sure to check out Z.A. Maxfield’s website for information on how to buy her other fabulous books, too. (if you haven’t read Drawn Together yet – DO!) Z.A. Maxfield