Title: A Shot of J&B
Author Name: Lou Sylvre
Publication Date & Length: March 2015 – 194pgs
Six years ago, Brian Harrison helped save the life of Jackie Vasquez, and he’s never really forgotten him. After the rescue, Brian ended his employment with Jackie’s uncle Luki and left the US for England, aiming to distance himself from the confused feelings—not lust, but not brotherly—that then sixteen-year-old Jackie engendered. Now Jackie has become a man, and when they meet again by chance, lust with a dose of D/s rope kink is definitely on the list of possibilities. As they get to know each other, though, lust shows every sign of growing into love, deep and true.
When Jackie moves to London for graduate studies in criminal psychology, he and Brian hope they’ll be able to enjoy each other’s frequent company. But they haven’t factored in the claim Brian’s police job with Scotland Yard will make on his time, especially when the “Gaslighter crimes” sap investigative resources. An abandoned aide dog named Soldier leads to a breakthrough clue, and a chain of discoveries fall like dominoes. As Brian rushes to beat the criminal’s game before it escalates to true terror, he comes to an undeniable conclusion: Jackie Vasquez, the man he loves, is in mortal danger.
“So, anyway, Brian,” he said, ending a not uncomfortable lull in the conversation. “I’m looking forward to the ride to airport. I want to hear more about your work, and London, and whatever. But,” he gestured toward the window, “here comes Sonny and Luki and Bear. I’ll get more coffee on.”
He rose, but before he turned toward the kitchen, he faced Brian and leaned forward, kissed his cheek swiftly and softly. He intended to step away, but Brian caught first one of his hands, and then the other, and held them both in one hand.
“Jackie, thank you for that. But what I’d like even more is if you were to kiss me—” Brian lifted the index finger of his free hand and touched his own lips. “—just here. Will you?”
“Yes,” Jackie whispered, and without any conscious decision to do so, added, “Yes, sir.” He leaned forward and touched his open lips to Brian’s, found them soft when he added a bit of pressure, and sent his tongue darting just inside for a taste. They broke the kiss together, but as it ended, Brian sucked and then nipped at Jackie’s bottom lip.
Brian smiled, and after he let go of Jackie’s hand, stroked once over Jackie’s shoulder and arm—a comforting touch, Jackie thought. “Thank you, Jackie,” Brian said, his eyes sparking with something like mischief. “That was lovely.”
What motivated you to start writing? Or what made you start putting pen to paper so to speak?
I really can’t quite say what motivated me. I don’t really remember a time when I didn’t write or want to write. But the early trials really didn’t count, because I had those old recording playing in my mind, telling me writers a special class of people and I didn’t qualify. I finally started writing with an aim toward publication when I realized that just wasn’t true. And not long after that, I realized that all the writing help books, helpful hints, and instructional clichés wouldn’t turn me into a writer. Even hanging with writers, rubbing shoulders with the best wouldn’t do it. The only way I’d write the way I wanted to write was to write, learn from that, write some more, and so on. I did, and I’ve never regretted it.
Who or what is your biggest inspiration for writing?
I guess I have to answer that in two ways. In a broad sense, I’m fascinated with why, how, and what if, especially in the human arena of emotions, actions, social constructs, spirituality, etc. I’ve always thought, as a reader, that’s what good fiction explores, and I do the same, although I never think that’s what I’ve done until the story is written. The second answer is, characters. I don’t consciously invent important characters, but of course they come from my brain—it’s not a mystic thing. As I become aware of them, I observe traits and if they interest me, they eventually inspire stories.
What is your writing environment? (Where do you write, what do you do to prepare right before you start writing)
Usually, I write in a small bedroom I’ve turned into an office. Sometimes, however, I have been known to write in the café at B&N, in my car, at the park, or on my bed. J To prepare for writing I make a cup of tea, open the document, review the most recent scenes, and then dig in.
What is the hardest part of a book for you to write? Any particular scene(s)?
The hardest part to write is the end, hands down. I usually end up torturing myself with it for much longer than I should, and then return to something close to the first way I wrote it. As for difficult scenes, the scenes where people who love each other, romantically or otherwise, are seriously at odds are heartbreaking for me to write. That’s also true of any scene centering around the plight of an empathic character who has ended up psychologically broken, often from doing something brave or selfless.
If you only could write in one genre, what would it be? And if you couldn’t write in that genre what genre would you pick next?
I’m going to answer that for the immediate moment, because this has changed over time and certainly will again. Bear in mind that I don’t think M/M romance should be treated as a separate genre—the genre is romance. Same for mystery, paranormal, etc.
Right now, if I had to choose one genre it would be Romantic Suspense. My next choice at the moment would be fantasy.
If you could spend a day with one author, who would it be and why?
This is making me chuckle. Recently I was asked who I would choose if I could co-write with any author living or dead. That had a completely different answer. J At the moment, if I could spend a day with an author I would stay right within our community and choose Angel Martinez. Angel has pleasant, calm persona and great sense of humor online that comes through as very genuine. Her writing is inventive, entertaining, and intelligent—but not in highbrow way, and I fall in love with at least one of her MC’s in every book. J
Thank you for hosting me on my A Shot of J&B Blog Tour, and for asking some questions I haven’t been asked before. It’s been a fun interview.
Lou Sylvre lives and writes on the rainy side of Washington State, penning mostly suspense/romance novels because she can’t resist giving her characters hard times but good love. Her personal assistant is Boudreau, a large cat who never outgrew his kitten meow, and he makes a point of letting her know when she’s taken a plot tangent too far. He (Boudreau) invites readers to give their feedback as well!