Our guest today is Jamieson Wolf, talking about his new release, LUST & LEMONADE. I met Jamieson electronically several years ago, when I took a short story workshop he taught (a wonderful one, I might add). We’ve kept in touch ever since.
I asked him about the genesis of this particular book:
A Seed That Grew
Lust and Lemonade was the first time that I followed that old piece of writer’s advice: write what you know.
Up until I started Lust and Lemonade, I had written a lot of fantasy and horror. I also wrote a lot of romances, but those had fantasy elements, too. I wanted to try something different, something that I hadn’t done before. I wanted to try writing a novel grounded completely in reality, that it would be simple fiction.
The only thing was, what did I write about? I had no idea who the characters or plot would be, but the idea sat beneath the tips of my fingers like an itch. The story wanted to be written, but it had no idea what it wanted to be yet.
I was out at a gay bar with a couple of my friends one night when inspiration struck. I sat there watching as gay men tried (some of them in vain) to find love or at least a warm body to lay with.
It was like watching a mating dance of sorts. All these different kinds of men all out looking for the same thing: a little bit of human affection, a little bit of warmth and companionship, however brief it may be.
I began to make up stories in my head about the different men I was watching: there was the lonely guy who just wanted to find love. He sat in the corner of the bar, nursing a beer, looking up at everyone with such an open expression, but no one sat at his table.
There were two guys that were obviously a couple, and they were checking out other men, wondering which one of them would be lucky enough to take a guy home. There was the man whore who was clearly just looking for the next hole to fill. What he really wanted was love, though he was too chicken to admit it.
At the other corner of the bar, there was this effeminate man. He was wearing a sparkly vest and I could see swooshes of eye shadow over his eyes. He looked fierce and fabulous, and I watched as he snapped his fingers at the bartender for another drink. I instantly fell a little bit in love with him.
Later that night, it occurred to me that I had watched the idea for my novel play out in front of my eyes in real life. I wondered how I would translate that to the page though. Armistead Maupin has always been a favourite author of mine and I’ve read the Tales of the City books multiple times.
So, I thought about writing an updated version of Tales of the City. The book would feature a roving narrative and a focus on a whole cast of characters. However, when I tried to plot it, I got writers’ block. I just couldn’t get the words out the way I wanted to.
I kept my plotting notes, but decided to write this book without any plot whatsoever. The characters obviously wanted to tell me a story and I had to let them tell it. I took some time to think of who I wanted to live within my pages. Like in the bar, the book would have the regular gay, the femme, the man whore, the couple that lived together but played together. I knew that I also had to have representation of other kinds of people within the LGBTQ community.
However, I started with the first chapter. As I wrote it, I got to meet Blaine, Nancy, Chuck and Mike for the first time. It was like coming home in a way, as if the life I had been living had found its way home on the page.
As I continued writing, more characters graced the pages: Poppy and her lover River Moon Falls, Blaine’s grandmother Nan; Romilda, the woman who ran the LGBTQ library. The characters kept me on my toes and told me where they wanted the story to go. It was the first time I had written a novel in this way, letting the characters have almost complete control and it was so freeing.
When I began to feel that the novel was nearing its end, I realized that it was the beginning of a trilogy or series. The first book was about falling in lust with someone. The second book would be about how life gets in the way. The third book would be about love.
The whole experience has been about finding love in a community where it’s difficult to find love. I have always believed in the impossible, after all. When you read Lust and Lemonade, I hope you fall in love with the characters as much as I did.
You can get your copy from Renaissance Press here:
You can also find it at Amazon:
Jamieson has been writing since a young age when he realized he could be writing instead of paying attention in school. Since then, he has created many worlds in which to live his fantasies and live out his dreams.
He is a Number One Best Selling Author (he likes to tell people that a lot) and writes in many different genres. Jamieson is also an accomplished artist. He works in mixed media, charcoal and pastels. He is also something of an amateur photographer, a poet and graphic designer.
He currently lives in Ottawa Ontario Canada with his cat, Tula, who is fearless and his husband Michael who is magic made real.
Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Visit his website and his blog.
You can find me at: www.jamiesonwolf.com
You can read my blog at www.jamiesonwolfauthor.wordpress.com
And you can follow me on Facebook: www.facebook.com/jamiesonwolf
Or Twitter: www.twitter.com/jamiesonwolf