I read. I read a lot. I read to the point of distraction. Most of you are aware of my intensive reading schedule. In my quest to seek out new reading material, I adore opening my blog to other authors, learning more about them, and learning more (in turn) about their work. Today is no exception. So, without further ado…
Draven St. James
Author of Grey’s Hidden Fire
Please describe Grey’s Hidden Fire in 25 words or less.
A book about two strong handsome firefighters who find lust, love and acceptance in each another.
What inspires you to your stories?
I find my inspiration in the everyday moments that most people might miss. Despite the massive amount of coffee I consume, I am able to sit quietly in awe of the everyday and attempt to adapt the small mundane moments I see into something that will light the fire of my readers’ imaginations.
Do you have a special place you write?
I don’t have a specific place that I write in. I do have a specific time though. My writing tends to take place after dark. Life is so hectic that it consumes the daylight hours. Thus, I find myself writing with the night sky as a companion.
Do you have a playlist while writing, anything special you do while you write?
There is no special playlist, per se. I do have Pandora stations that I listen to based on what emotion the scene is attempting to evoke.
What do you do when you get writers block?
When I get writers block on one book, I switch to work on another. It helps to have multiple characters to play with. When one set of players gets tired all I have to do is open a different file and I’m in a new world of possibilities.
How long does it take you to write a story?
The first draft of Grey’s Hidden Fire took me about three weeks to work out before submission. It was a story that just flowed out of me. They don’t all always come together that quickly. Plus, a first draft is a long way off from a final one.
How many books have you written? Are they part of a series?
So far, Grey’s Hidden Fire is my only published book but there are going to be more with those characters. Hopefully a Christmas novella with Grey and Mica *crossing fingers*.
What other project are you working on?
I just signed a contract through Loose ID for a new book, Capturing Jace., which is a shifter novel. I hope to also make that into a series. All in all, I have about ten books in various stages of completion waiting on my computer.
If your book(s) were made into a TV Series, what actors would you choose to play your characters?
I’d have to say that Mica would be played by David Boreanaz and Grey would be played by Gerald Butler.
What is your favorite paranormal movie?
My favorite paranormal movie is Dracula. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen that movie.
Who are your favorite authors?
Oh no, that is like asking me to point out which star I like the best. I honestly don’t have a true favorite. I love a host of them and they range across many a genre. I know that is an easy answer, but it is the truth of the matter.
Do you read the genre’s you write?
I do read m/m contemporary erotica. However, I also read many other sub-genres in that realm.
What are your next 5 books on your too be read pile?
Oh I have books by Stormy Glenn, Lynn Hagen, Charlie Richards, Joyee Flynn and Stephani Hecht on tap for my future reading pleasure.
If you could date one of your characters, who would it be? Why?
Well, if I had the right bits and pieces to appeal to Grey I would date him. He just exudes kindness and warmth. It doesn’t hurt that he is hell-a hot! 😉
What has one of your fans said that has made your day?
I had a fan tell me that I opened their eyes to a whole new world. They had never read LGBT fiction and were very surprised at how much they had enjoyed it.
Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
My advice is to not be afraid to write what you are passionate about, get to know the writing community and be brave enough to share your work!
Vampire or Werewolf
Oh, definitely werewolf.
Beach or Mountains
The beach, especially in the Northwest.
Coffee or Tea
Coffee….coffee….and oh yeah….coffee.
Wake early or sleep in
Grey’s entire life is wrapped around his job as a firefighter. It is all he has ever wanted. That is until his new coworker Mica Cruz saunters through the door with his smoldering dark looks and dimpled grin. Suddenly he finds himself wanting to get to know what Mica looks like out of his gear and between the sheets.
Mica has one rule…keep his work life and his personal life separate. It was easy enough to follow until he meets Grey and finds that his rule can’t stand up to the fire that Grey ignites. There’s one big thing standing in the way of all of his lust filled musings. Grey is straight.
In a profession where being gay is often kept quiet Grey must come to terms with his growing attraction to Mica. How much is he willing to sacrifice? Can they come together before someone’s hatred threatens to destroy them both?
Mica walked into the dark room that contained two bunk beds. Grey’s huddled form made a silhouette against the darkness on one of the lower bunks, and Mica stretched out on the other. Grey’s shifting sent the sounds of a creaky mattress across the small space.
“Are you gay?” Grey’s words shattered the silence with their quiet intensity.
Mica felt like all the air had been sucked from the room. No one had ever out-and-out asked him if he was gay. He was fairly certain it was because he didn’t look like the stereotypical gay man. He also didn’t act like what his coworkers had always described as a gay man. He wasn’t effeminate. They were never cruel, but there was a level of mocking when they spoke about the topic. The reaction to the answer to this one question could screw his whole world up, but he didn’t feel like he could lie to Grey.
“Yes,” he responded in a low voice. He held his breath and waited for some kind of verbal or physical explosive response. There was nothing, just the soft sound of Grey’s breath.
“Was I any good?” Grey asked.
Mica sat up and stared into the darkness, his mouth hanging open. “What?” he asked in a loud whisper.
“In your fantasy, I must have been pretty good, right?” There was humor in the other man’s voice. Humor, but not ridicule.
“Yeah, you were pretty good,” Mica conceded. He lay back on his bed and laughed softly. “You were really good.”
“Is that what you are? Dominant?”
“What do you mean?”
“I…” Grey hesitated. “Are you a top?”
Mica snickered and smiled broadly at Grey for having the courage to ask that kind of question. “Yes and no.”
Grey chuckled. “How does that work?”
“I wouldn’t mind bottoming for the right guy,” Mica confessed. He had never said that to anyone. He had actually never bottomed, but if given a chance with Grey…he’d be tempted.
“Oh…” Grey murmured.
Mica glared hard into the darkness. He wished he could look into Grey’s eyes, see what was in Grey’s mind. It was damn difficult to judge what a man was thinking simply by the tone of his voice. Grey didn’t seem to have much of a problem with Mica’s being gay. If anything, he sounded intrigued.
“I take it you’re straight?” Mica asked.
The weight of the silence was heavy. Had Grey gone to sleep that quickly? Mica wanted to get up and turn on the light, but he didn’t think Grey would appreciate it. It would feel too much like a spotlight during an interrogation.
“Yes,” Grey admitted. Although the brief moment of hesitation was curious.
“Thank you, then, for not freaking out about earlier,” Mica said into the void. His face heated at the words. He wanted to add to that, but he didn’t know what to say. Apologizing for using someone to get off was a new thing to him. In his early days of coming out he’d had his one-night stands with no apology. Somehow this entire situation held a higher level of intimacy. Maybe it was the sharing of secret thoughts in the dark.
Grey shuffled. “Mica?”
“What was I doing?”
Mica’s eyes widened. He couldn’t have heard that right, or he’d processed it incorrectly. “Huh?”
“I mean, what was your… What was the whole fantasy?”
Mica had to sit up to hear the whispered words. “In the shower?”
“Yeah.” Grey sighed. “I mean, I know I was…I mean…in the end…sucking…”
Mica could practically feel the heat of the other man blushing across the room.
“Are you seriously asking for the setting of my jack-off session?” Mica chuckled.
“Well, when you say it like that…” Grey’s voice filled with discomfort. “I guess it was an odd question. Never mind.”
Grey sounded mortified. Mica didn’t know what drove Grey to ask the question, but Mica wanted to share the fantasy with him. After all, Grey had asked. No one could fault him for handing over information that had been requested.
Mica lay back and closed his eyes. “You came into the locker room as I was taking off my T-shirt. You wanted to know if I needed any help cleaning up, or if I had any pain from the fire.”
He paused to see if Grey would stop him. If Grey had changed his mind about wanting to know Mica’s hot fantasy. A fantasy where Grey was the star. He heard nothing but Grey’s breathing. “Are you with me?”
If Mica hadn’t been listening so closely, he wouldn’t have heard the response.
“Okay, so I told you my shoulder was really hurting from when I pushed against the door frame to make it outside. You came up behind me and ran your fingers over my shoulders, massaging. I could detect the faintest touch on my neck, where it felt like you’d kissed me. My cock twitched, and I barely managed to keep from groaning. You felt my body tense, so you pulled away and turned me around. You asked if I was okay, if I needed any other help.” His voice became hoarse with arousal.
“That’s when you looked down and saw my cock, rock hard against my briefs. You reached down to lightly stroke it through the fabric and asked if I required help taking care of any other special needs.”
Grey chuckled softly and said, “Sounds like a line from a porn video.”
“Well, it is a fantasy. Give me a break.” Mica laughed. “Anyway, of course I was shocked by your offer, but so fucking hard because your hand was stroking my dick that I nodded. You pushed my briefs down and wrapped your fingers around my cock. Your hand felt amazing. It was so warm and rough. I rocked my hips into it.” His cock leaked. The arousal was ten times what it had been in the shower. Describing the fantasy for Grey was hotter than he could have imagined.
“And?” Grey asked, his voice ragged.
Mica propped himself up on his elbow. Was it his imagination, or did Grey sound turned on?
“Then you swiped your finger over the head of my dick, getting a drop of precum. You brought it to your lips and sucked it off. You told me it tasted sweet and salty and that you wanted more.”
Grey’s breath came faster from across the room. Holy shit. Just the thought of Grey getting hot from the fantasy was enough to make Mica’s cock throb.