Ac´cent on Evey Brett

Me&CarrmaB&W

Evey Brett joins me today for a close-up snapshot.  

…Evey, what handful of words do you think best describe you personally?

Quiet. Solitary. Pensive. Spiritual. Ex-musician. Horse servant.

…Give us an overview of your life—where you come from, where you grew up, your schooling, a few places you’ve worked—whatever paragraph you feel best encapsulates you as an individual.

I was born and raised in Denver, though I lived in Salt Lake City for a bit where I became a die-hard Star Trek: the Next Generation fan with a mad crush on Tasha Yar. Back in Denver, I ended up a music major and earned my Bachelor’s playing jazz and classical saxophone, though, oddly, had an English teacher say, “Too bad the English department lost you to music.” Ha. I went a bit crazy for a while and needed a quieter creative outlet, so I took up writing, eventually going on to attend the Clarion Workshop for Science Fiction and Fantasy and getting a Master’s in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. I moved to San Diego and lived there until I visited southern Arizona and met a Lipizzan mare who decided she wanted a human of her own to coddle her and attend her in her post-brood mare years. I’m not, and never was a horse-crazy girl, but I moved to Arizona because of the horse and got a job working the graveyard shift at a hotel which gives me ample down-time to write.

…Let’s have a quick look at your homoerotica novel or novels. If you have several, how about presenting them in chronological order with a sentence or two that best describes them? 

I have five as Evey and nine more under another name as well as a couple of short stories in print. The first four books are related and basically set in a world which features incubi, cambions (their half-human offspring,) and Wardens, the people who hunt incubi and take care of and partner with the cambions.

DD1Demon’s Dance was the first, though after it came out and I read the reviews, I kind of rebooted the world. Capriole is the first chronologically, and features Lukas, a Warden, who is doing his best to save Felipe, a traumatized young man on the run from a vengeful incubus.

The title, along with the sequel Levade, are two of the “Airs Above the Ground” Lipizzan horses are known for, and in the book Lukas is bonded to a herd of Lipizzans and they aid him with his own healing as well as Felipe’s. In Levade, I dig into Lukas’s past and the talent he and Felipe have as energy workers, which they use to help a new character, Konstantin, who was born a half-incubus but genetically altered in the hopes of gaining more favorable characteristics.

Konstantin deals with the consequences of his past and his penchant for submission in Eliana, which is named for the female character but features plenty of sex with Kon’s male partner, Dane.

My newest book, Saints and Madmen, is an unrelated gothic historical set in Whitby, England, and features a young man unwittingly thrust into a life and death battle for the soul of the lord he’s been sent to work for. This one’s a threesome, as the lord’s servant plays a part as well.

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…Would you describe yourself first as a writer of gay themes/characters; or first as a writer, period, without limiting yourself to any sub-genre?

I think I’m tired of trying to pigeonhole my work into genres because they could fit into a dozen. I’m a writer. ‘Nuff said. Though I admit my loyalty is to the SF/F/Horror genre rather than romance. I don’t write fluffy bunny stories. I can’t. I just don’t understand them. There’s got to be more than just the relationship at stake. And most of my characters just happen to be gay; I’m generally not interested in the hetero relationship dynamics.EB_Levade_covertn

…What is your opinion of exploring the angst of the gay lifestyle in your writing? Or do you write about characters who happen to be gay and whose sexual preference is not their most defining characteristic or even an important part of the story? Maybe some of both?

I generally avoid the whole angst about being gay and worrying what others will think. I’m queer but largely avoided the whole coming out drama in my life so I don’t have any need to write about it. My characters are gay because they are. Nobody else cares and their sexuality is not the point of the story. There are more important things at stake, like trying not to go crazy or dealing with the demons that are trying to kill them. EB_Eliana_covertn

…What excites you most as a writer . . . exposing the tender side of a tough character? Being able to create unique individuals who grow and change like real people? Exploring the sexual nature of men and women? Tell all!

What excites me? Hurting my characters. Crushing them badly and having someone there to pick up the pieces. I do tend to explore the idea of trauma and healing quite a bit, and I’ve been researching the psychological aspects of that for a while. The sex usually has a purpose beyond being a byproduct of lust and attraction; for instance, in Capriole and the related books, the cambions (half-incubi) need sex to survive, and they’re not always okay with that. That need also proves dangerous for those taking care of them.

…By the same token, what turns you off? What are the nuts-and-bolts part of writing that you’d rather skip, but that have to be confronted and conquered?

Can’t think of anything offhand. At the moment I’m annoyed because the middle of one story is taking a long time to work out, but I don’t think there’s anything I’d rather skip. I like doing puzzles, and while arranging the pieces of a story can get frustrating, I generally enjoy the process.

Actually—I hate putting in chapters. They’re the very last thing I put in, because I often change my scenes around and chapter headings are constricting. I’d be happier if I didn’t have to mess with them at all.

…Start with this sentence and write us a bit of flash fiction, up to 200 words:

Jeffrey was never sure whether it was the left or right side of his brain that made him do certain things when the still, soft body of night was his only witness, when he was sure his own conscience was half-assed asleep. He turned to Pedyr next to him on the sheet-tangled bed . . .

…and made certain the cuffs around Pedyr’s wrists were still in place. Well-meaning as Pedyr was, Jeffrey didn’t want to take the risk of Pedyr’s claws too close to his tenderest parts. Then he began to slowly, leisurely, wake up his partner, starting by kissing that cute, ridged nose and then moving down his scale-covered neck to the torso that was both humanoid and not. Pedyr stirred, writhing sinuously at Jeffrey’s kisses. He had no nipples, so Jeffrey moved right down to the belly, kneading it to encourage Pedyr’s erection. To his delight, the careful attention worked. Like his reptilian counterparts on Terra, Pedyr had not one, but two organs to pleasure, and Jeffrey was looking forward to playing with them both.

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…Tell us why you write works of homoerotica. Just to tell a story, where the characters just happen to be gay? Or do you have an overarching purpose, perhaps a social or moral sensitivity to the subject?

I write it because that’s what I write. I don’t have a social or moral sensitivity to it, though I admit I cried with DOMA and Prop 8 went down because it was such a relief and I was happy for what it meant for many of my friends. But otherwise, social injustice against LGBT folks isn’t likely to show up much in my stories. For a while I was into the research side of LGBT SF/F and even had an essay on it published, but that fire’s pretty much died. At the moment I just want to write, and write well, and if I’m known for writing queer fiction, that’s fine. I suppose my overall goal in writing is telling more personal stories, how someone can go through hell and find someone to help them on the other side.

…Describe your perceived reading audience. Mostly gay? Gay and straight? Mostly women? Both sexes?

One of my friends, Jessica Freely, recently did a survey about readers of M/M romance. The overwhelming majority were straight women. Can’t argue with such a huge sample.

…Now flesh out your ideal readers. Who do you wish you could reach out and speak to, call your fans, help you spread the word about your books? And how have you tried to do that (if at all)?

My ideal readers are those who feel something emotionally when they read my books. Love it or hate it, as long as I’ve pushed a few buttons I’ve done my job. I want to make them think and get more out of it than just a rush from the sex scenes.

As far as spreading the word, I have enough pro writer friends that I try not to go overboard with promo or begging for reviews because they have their own stuff to promote and they’re busy writing. For personal reasons I’m not terribly active in social media and I don’t really have a need to reach out and constantly say things. Actually, I’m probably too quiet because I’m afraid of bothering people.  I also don’t have a smartphone or internet at home, which puts a crimp in promotional activities but keeps me more focused on writing.

…Describe your proudest moment or crowning achievement.

The first thing that comes to mind is winning the school spelling bee in 5th grade, standing there dumbfounded while the whole auditorium applauded. The other is when my saxophone quartet won the university’s chamber music competition, which hadn’t been done by saxophones before. That was the best group of people I ever had the honor of playing with, musically and cohesively, and since then I’ve never gotten to be part of a group that wonderful.

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…Both those moments seem wonderful to me! Present around 200 words from any one of your works, an excerpt that you think shows your best writing.

From Eliana, when my two male characters meet for the first time.

Bari Sax

The music was jazz, kinky, and low instead of deafening. People of all types were everywhere; men, women, Doms, Dommes, and their subs in all combinations and states of dress. There were other couples, seemingly more interested in each other than role-playing. Laughter and conversation filled the room.

He was home. The energetic, sexual vibe fit him as nothing else had. Somehow he knew these people shared the same hunger he did, yet the club seemed welcoming rather than dangerous.

He gazed around the room, wondering where to start since he was unpartnered—and there, leaning nonchalantly against the wall, was Kon, languidly taking stock of the club’s denizens.

Dane didn’t know his name then, of course, but the attraction was instantaneous. Kon was the prettiest man Dane had ever laid eyes on, with long black hair and a face that could have easily belonged to either sex. His bare chest and too-tight leather pants made his gender clear, but Dane liked the ambiguity.

The flush of heat overcame Dane so quickly he couldn’t control himself. The sexual craving blotted out all other thoughts. His vision focused so it pinpointed on Kon—only Kon—and homed in on him as if Dane were a heat-seeking missile and Kon the target.

…My own favorite word, beyond a doubt, is an f-word. 

What is your favorite word?

Onomatopoeia.

…I love that word too! Along with mythopoeia, a linguistic  cousin. And what is your quick, gut reaction to these f-words?

Forbidden:  I’m sure there’s a way to work around that.

Frustration:  Yeah. Every time someone doesn’t fold something before they put it in Lost and Found, which I have to organize.

Fornicate:  Can I watch?

Fractal:  Ooh, pretty.

Fake:  I don’t like fake things.

Flip-flop:  I’m tired of seeing these in the lost and found at work, especially when they’re cheap, rubber and gross.

Freak: That’s not a nice thing to call someone. There’s a story behind why they act the way they do—and the reaction you have toward them.

…Now sell a book.

From Saints and Madmen:

SaintsMadmen

I entered a room which made the most graphic of his lordship’s paintings seem tame. The art here either portrayed a man’s naked body or a man coupling with another man. The paintings were so graphic as to heat my entire body with both embarrassment and lust. There depictions of dark-skinned natives and other races I had not the education to identify, some of which looked like Tamar and yet did not. There were carvings of wood and ivory, ancient pots painted with scenes of orgies, and even books open to pictures of a man offering his ass to another. There were sumptuous furnishings including couches, chairs, a padded bench with cuffs on the legs and chains dangling from the walls.

I stared in mute fascination, unable to take in everything I was seeing. I was hot and cold and aroused and frightened all at the same time. I slid my hand down the front of my trousers to grasp my cock, already erect in reaction to the visceral scenes.

“You’ve found my treasure trove.”

I whirled around, face burning at being caught in such a shameful state. His lordship stood in front of a second doorway, utterly sanguine as I yanked my hand free. He gazed not at me but at a painting depicting a Greek god driving his oversized member between the legs of a youth. I averted my eyes. “I—I’m sorry, my lord. I had no right to pry.”

“You are young. Curiosity is the fault of the young, but I shall not hold it against you. Instead—perhaps you would like to examine a few pieces? I’ve traveled the world over searching for erotic implements, anything ranging from pleasurable to torturous. Several pieces Tamar has bought from the smugglers in town.”

There was an odd, dreamlike quality to his voice which both frightened and aroused me. I wondered if he were about to succumb to one of his fits, and I trembled, not wanting to face the shadows I’d seen in his eyes. The door to the passageway was but a few steps away, and surely I could outrun his lordship. Though if I ran it might cause offense and I had no desire to lose my position.

And then there was the rush of heat as I recalled the days in his studio when he’d watched me fiddle with myself and tell lurid tales. All thoughts of fleeing disappeared. Fits or not, I wanted to find a way to aid to his lordship. “Which are your favorites, my lord?”

He went over to a shelf piled high with carved depictions of male members. Some were small, hardly thicker than my finger, while others were as wide as my fist. Most were wood, but a few had been created from glass, metal or even stone. He chose one of dark black jet which had no doubt come from our own Yorkshire coast.

My mind ran wild with the thoughts of how he might have commissioned such an object and who might have carved it. My body quavered with the dark hope of feeling that inhuman member spear me.

“Would you like to play out one of your fantasies?”

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Thanks for the visit, Evey. I’d like to invite you to my next little soirée, just a few interesting friends who’d gather to discuss your books. While you, of course, would be quietly playing  jazz riffs in a secret alcove, taking notes for your next book . . . 

Buy Links:

Capriole: http://www.loose-id.com/capriole.html

Felipe has a knack of knowing things he shouldn’t about people and the all-too-real demons from his past are coming back to haunt him. Lukas and his Lipizzan horses work their magic to heal Felipe, but an incubus to kill him and anyone who gets in its way.

Levade: http://www.loose-id.com/levade.html

Heartbroken after a reunion with Lukas does not go well, Felipe is afraid that unless Lukas can come to terms with the devastating truth of who—and what—he is their love will be lost forever.

Eliana: http://www.loose-id.com/Eliana

Wounded physically and emotionally, Eliana finds new hope for love with Kon and his half-incubus partner, Dane, until she finds out Kon has been keeping a devastating secret, one that will put their lives at risk.

Demon’s Dance: http://www.amazon.com/Demons-Dance-ebook/dp/B004GB1T4K

Cory will do anything to keep half-incubus Tristan safe, even if it means going against both his patron and the Wardens.

Saints and Madmen: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/index.html

Haunted by the memories of both saints and madmen, Cadmon must offer his body and risk his sanity to save the men he loves.

Carrma book 006

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15 Responses to “Ac´cent on Evey Brett”

  1. Oh, my GOD, I have found a writing clone. Even down to winning the spelling bee in fifth grade and staring around while everyone else applauded wildly (I had to be shoved up on stage by my French teacher, Mme. Bevan, before I realised what was actually going on.)

    THIS sentence, however, caught me most: What excites me? Hurting my characters. Crushing them badly and having someone there to pick up the pieces. I do tend to explore the idea of trauma and healing quite a bit, and I’ve been researching the psychological aspects of that for a while.

    I honestly did not know that there were other people who wrote that way. I truly did not. I found, during my teens, an outlet (and, at last, a NAME for what I do) in hurt/comfort fictions, but it wasn’t really enough, because the hurt/comfort fics almost always involved one or two instances, and then it was made up, and everyone lived happily every after. While I DO admit to liking things to resolve themselves (I am a bit of a romantic) towards what might be CALLED a HEA … once or twice isn’t enough for me. I want to delve into their heads as a reader AND a writer – WHY does this hurt them – or if it does not, what then?

    ALL of your books are going on my wishlist. Right now. You have made my day by joining teams with Erin and posting here. Thank you, thank you. Your writing is deliciously descriptive, and I can’t wait to read more.

    Thank you, so much, Erin, for putting this up here and spreading the word so that I got a chance to come here and read it. It almost felt like I came “home”, a little bit, inside my own skin.

    • How awesome that you won the 5th grade spelling bee, too! My friend Jessica Freely also loves the hurt/comfort idea and she can be pretty brutal too. I think I’m mean to my characters because it’s a way to work through my own “stuff,” but there always has to be a reason why the characters do what they do. Nothing bugs me more than a book or movie where the characters’ motivations aren’t quite realistic.

      I’m glad we have so much in common, and thanks for putting my books on your wishlist. :>)

  2. Oh, the dance of the Lippizaners! I love the titling to reflect their moves – that’s perfect! Thank you for this. I’m intrigued!

  3. Well, hopefully second time’s the charm (I hate WP): great interview and a woman after my own heart. I saw Levade & Capriole and nearly swooned (a former Dressage Queen). I too believe in traveling a dark and dangerous journey with my characters. This is a nice intro to a new-to-me author, well done, both of you, Evey & Erin.

    • Thank you! And how cool that you were into dressage. I don’t ride much–no saddle–but I have a good riding instructor friend and we do what we can.

  4. Thoroughly enjoyable interview. Best luck!

    Rose

  5. Wonderful interview, Erin and Evey. Evey, your covers are lovely and the desire to get inside and under them is overwhelming…I love the sound of your books and need to give them a look. I like the fact you don’t pigeonhole yourself either. ‘I’m a writer’ is all anyone really needs to know. I also like the conflict and the angst in my stories so we have that in common. Great to read this article…

    • Glad you enjoyed the interview! I got the “I’m a writer,” thing from Nicola Griffith, who I did a workshop with. It’s also too hard to say I write LGBT/SFFH/Paranormal/Erotic/Romance, and the books fall into more than one category, so, “I’m a writer” is plenty.

  6. Fantastic interview Erin & Evey – a writer after my own heart who loves to hurt her characters 😉 More books for my TBR list, to be sure!!

  7. Every, I love the word onomatopoeia too. And I also like to torture my characters. We have those things in common it seems 😉

    Your work sounds really interesting. I like to read SF/F, but I admit to being too lazy to write it.

  8. Can I say that I love the pic of you two smilers? 🙂

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