Monday, August 24, 2009

My interview with Laura Tolomei

Good morning everyone! Come and welcome author, Laura Tolomei. Grab a cup of coffee and take a seat. Laura answered some of my questions and you can read them below. Leave her a comment of a question, Laura loves to hear from her readers.

1.Did you always want to become an author or did you just fall into it?
I always loved writing so it was no casual affair I became an author. The first time I tried my hand with it, was in high school where I managed to publish a short, very short, story on the Colonel Journal. Then I contributed some articles for Emory U Journal, liking it very much, but didn’t think of making a career out of It until almost 30 years later, even if I never stopped writing altogether.

2.Did it take you a while to become published? If so, what made you keep going?
Well, my first novel dates back to 2006 while the first published work, the short story The Moon Priestess, is of March 2008 so I guess it did take me a while before I acquired a publisher. What kept me going was the belief in my skills and the value of my work even beyond its apparent erotic content. Of course, the fact that I don’t have to earn my living with it makes it a lot easier LOL. Luckily, I have a regular job so I see this more as a hobby and dedicate it time and energy only when I have them, not continuously as in a regular job. And this is an advantage in more than one way because rather a creative experience it makes my writing all the more fun and enjoyable.

3.When you sit down to write, is there a ritual you have to do before you start?
Turn on the music. Without it I suffer from lack of concentration. Music works miracles on my brain, my greatest inspiration and interest so far.

4.Do you plan the story out or just let it flow?
I definitely let it flow and often don’t even know where it’s going until it ends. In Spying the Alcove, my latest release, my mate made me notice a detail, which influences a character in a way I hadn’t thought about when writing the story, but which suited him perfectly. Also in my serial Virtus, out starting in 2010, it took me 6 books to figure out why things worked the way they did and where the story was going, even if the characters had told me from the start.

5.Did you decide to write in the M/M genre or did it choose you?
As I said above, I didn’t plan it this way. These stories seemed to work better, the characters more credible and exciting so I went along with them, creating stories to suit them.

6.Do you have a current list of releases and where they can be found?
I most certainly do.

RE-SCUE, novel, FDP Firedrake Weyr Publishing, M/M, M/F, M/F/F, Contemporary, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Paranormal.
Through time, there’s a lot of changes.
Through lives, there’s a lot of mistakes.
The only bond between time and lives is destiny.
Sometimes, you can recognize your changes and your mistakes…even your destiny. But ARE YOU WILLING AND READY TO ACCEPT IT?

OCTOBER 2009 - BLOOD SHADOWS ON PASSION, novel, eXtasy Books, M/M, Horror, Dark Fantasy, Paranormal.
A wolf, a Druid, a hunter and his assistant…sex or violence, blood or sperm, human or beast, but you can never really tell which is which.

DECEMBER 2009 - TO SEDUCE A SOULMATE, novel, eXtasy Books, M/M, Paranormal.
Finding a soul mate was the easy part. To seduce him became the hardest game of his life.

2010 - VIRTUS: The Sex novel, eXtasy Books, M/M, M/M/F, Series, Fantasy, Adventure, Paranormal, Series.
On Sendar, sex has replaced violence…a lot of sex instead of bloody violence. And where there’s a lot of sex, there’s no difference between genders so nobody cares about your tastes or preferences. IS THIS A TALE?

7.Do you have any WIP that you might want to share with us?
I have several WIPs, starting from Virtus and the next books of the serial, The Game, The Shadow, The Pledge, The Guardian. I have a contemporary, paranormal M/M/F novel I’m finishing up and an M/M, dark fantasy, short story for another of eXtasy’s well-known Anthologies.

8.Considering all the books you have written, do you have one that stands out or is your favorite?
Without any doubt, Divinitas (genre: M/M, lesbian ménage, historical, dark fantasy, paranormal, gods, deities) is my favorite book to date. A very unique novel, it’s a multi-character tale, which uses three incarnations to tell the story of two souls struggling with lust, love and betrayal in their quest for the divine essence, best described in its three fundamental cycles, life, death, rebirth. Three main stories make up the book and their settings, just like the characters, change dramatically. Starting in Ancient Egypt, it continues in the fabulous Persian Empire, concluding in Celtic Britain. The first two stories are a personal interpretation of age-old myths, Osiris’s death and resurrection as god of the underworld, and Mitra’s ascent in Zarathustra’s and later Roman cult as the invincible Sun God. But the book’s appeal lies not in the setting or the characters, however intriguing they may be,
Divinitas challenges the reader to think about sacred mythology, which seems strangely recurrent in various religions. If I had to give a definition, it would be of an erotic book with an intellectual content that addresses central themes in our beliefs about life, after-life and our connection to the divine. I offer alternative points of view and…who knows? indicate new paths for individual growth. That's why my characters in Divinitas, just like in all my books, learn to grow along the way. In fact, their lessons will help them lead better lives in the next incarnation. And even if I tackle ancient myths or legends, I still talk about real life people struggling through the same battles we all face daily. Us-Yri has to learn to master his uncontrollable passion for his friend Set in order to understand his spiritual side. Mitra, too, tries to fight against his lust for Vayu only to find that total acceptance of his love is the only thing that will set him free.
But Divinitas goes even further. Its greatest message is perhaps that everyone has a connection to the divine as long as they don't lose touch with their spiritual side. And analyzing the succession of religious myths, it becomes clear spirituality is a force man's been reckoning with ever since he walked the Earth. True, times, spaces and even names change, but the tale they tell is always the same, a love so great that even if betrayed, it will find the strength to save himself and mankind.

9.How many languages do you write in?
I write in both Italian and English and have books coming out in both languages, but I have to admit that lately I’m concentrating more on the English ones. The problem in Italy is with the publishers, not as technologically advanced and up to date like their American, Canadian or English counterparts. Readers are more traditional as well, preferring print to any e-book, thus e-publishing is not a big market segment here in Italy. So my books have only a printing contract, but it takes publishers forever to transform my file to a print format, not to mention that all galley checks are manual alone, noting electronic, and have to be sent by mail, regular mail not the e kind. It all adds up to a lot of wasted time and headaches, which I gladly leave to those who can communicate only in Italian.

10.When you have a moment to sit down and breathe, what do you do to unwind?
I go to the beach. I love lying under the hot sun, letting my mind run free with its own stories and characters, not all of which will become a structured novel. In alternative, or if the weather’s bad or too cold, I love listening to music or see a movie, another of my very many interests.

11.What authors are in your TBR pile?
Bobby Michaels, William Maltese, Matthew Haldeman-Time, D.J. Manly, Laura Baumbach, J.L. Langley, Jet Mykles.

12.Do you have any tips for those aspiring authors out there?
I think the most important piece of advice, which is true for any occasion, is to believe in oneself always and no matter what because if you don’t, , no one’s going to do it for you.



went you were first starting out, who encouraged you to carry on?

SharonJM said...

Laura, I'm with you about the beach and the ability to think there.

Darren said...

HI where is your email address located, I'd like to schedule an interview for later in September if thats posible.

Katie Bug said...

Darren, who were you asking?

Wendi Zwaduk said...

Great post. I need music when I write as well. Then again, I have the tv and the iPod going.

My favorite place to think is my front porch. Being in the country is much like the beach: quiet, peaceful, and soothing.