Kelli A. Wilkins
Celebrating Pride Month - Writing Gay Romances: 4 FAQ (Part 2)
My name is Kelli A. Wilkins and I write romances in every genre and heat level from mild to super-spicy. When people learn that I write gay romances they usually ask a lot of questions about “why” or “how” I write them.
To celebrate Pride month, I’m sharing four FAQ about writing m/m romances. (In the first part of this blog, I shared four different questions from readers and authors.)
#1: You’ve written three contemporary gay romances (A Secret Match, Four Days with Jack, and Killer in Wolf’s Clothing), which one is your favorite and why?
I love all of my romances, in all genres, but my favorite gay romance is A Secret Match. I love the setting (professional wrestling) and the characters, especially the hero, Everett. He’s a bit of a wiseass and has a crazy sense of humor, but he uses those as a defense to mask his pain. Right from the start of the book Ev is given an ultimatum: come out and be honest about who he really is, or risk losing his longtime lover, Josh.
I also love the book because of the way I wrote it. It’s not told in a traditional manner. Ev is on the road and apart from Josh for almost half the book, and we experience his relationship with Josh through flashbacks and voicemail messages. We see and feel Ev’s isolation and conflicting emotions. We also see Josh getting advice from his friends regarding his “secret” boyfriend. I won’t give away more than that, but the book is an emotional roller coaster ride blended with steamy love scenes and an inside look at the world of professional wrestling.
#2: Most of your straight romances have historical settings. Do you see yourself writing a historical gay romance? Could a gay romance “work” in a historical setting?
Certainly! A gay romance could work in almost any historical setting. Granted, depending on where and when the story is set, the male characters might have to keep their relationship a secret, or at least be surrounded by other characters who are open minded about a same-sex romance.
Several of my straight historical romances have included gay or bisexual characters, or the characters have explored same-sex fantasies. For example, when I wrote Midsummer Night’s Delights, I didn’t know that Julian or his wife had same-sex fantasies until I started writing. (Characters sometimes like to surprise us writers!) I trusted my instincts and wrote the story that was in my head. (That book has plenty of m/m and ménage scenes, and I wrote two sequels that are even hotter, Midwinter Night’s Delights and Ultimate Night’s Delights.)
Two of my other historical romances, A Most Unfortunate Prince and Redemption from a Dark Past also feature very important gay characters. So, as you can see, I’ve already incorporated m/m romance into historical settings. As of right now, I don’t have plans to write a full-length gay historical romance, but you never know when inspiration will strike!
#3: What are some basic elements that go into writing a good gay romance? Are they harder to write than a straight romance?
Let’s go back to English class for a minute. All good books (regardless of genre) need to have the same basic elements: a believable plot, interesting fleshed-out characters the readers can root for (with histories and backstories), sensory details that pull the reader into the story, and good dialogue. These elements go into every romance (and horror story) I write, whether it’s an erotic historical/fantasy, straight paranormal, or gay contemporary. Once you get the basics down, you can write just about anything; mysteries, suspense, spy novels, and even children’s books.
Writing a gay romance is really no different than writing a romance in any other genre, but some people get hung up on the idea of writing intimate love scenes, not understanding how the characters should act, or getting the story right—but that could happen when you’re writing any book, in any genre. My advice is: Just write the story. Let the characters tell you what happens and start typing.
#4: Are you going to write more gay romances? What’s in the works for you? Yes, I’m currently working on the outline for a new contemporary gay romance. The story will take place over a summer holiday weekend and deal with issues of self-acceptance, recovery, and coming to terms with your past. As of now, I think it’ll be a mild, heat level 1 story. But I never know how things will turn out until I start writing! The book will probably come out in early 2021. Of course, if I get great ideas for other gay romances (historical or contemporary), I’ll write those too!
I hope you enjoyed this FAQ blog. If you missed Part 1, you can catch up on the blog section of my site: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/blog
Here’s the book summary for A Secret Match. I bet you’ll fall in love with the characters as much as I have. And if you want more of Ev, check out his character interview on my blog: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/post/celebrate-pride-month-with-a-chat-with-everett-from-a-secret-match
Enjoy & Happy Reading!
Kelli A. Wilkins
A SECRET MATCH
Everett Kinkade is a world-famous professional wrestler and the sexy heartthrob of millions of adoring female fans. But Ev has a secret he doesn’t dare share with anyone. He’s gay.
After years of being Ev’s secret lover, Josh is tired of hiding in the shadows and wants Ev to openly acknowledge their relationship. Coming out is the last thing Ev wants and fears it will ruin his career.
One night in a moment of truth, Everett outs himself on live TV. There’s no going back, and his announcement sparks a firestorm of problems—both personally and professionally. He’s forced to come to grips with who he really is while facing down a manipulative boss and a tag-team out to destroy him.
Torn between living a lie and losing the man he loves, Ev has risked everything… can he find a balance between his career and his heart?
Order A Secret Match here:
All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/md6rZb
Read reviews here: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/a-secret-match
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