Euphoria by Jayne Lockwood
Cover Artist: Emmy@Studioenp.com
Sales Links: DSP Publications | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | Kobo
Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Jayne Lockwood here today talking about writing, characters and the latest release from DSP Publications Euphoria. Welcome, Jayne.
Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with author Jayne Lockwood
Very many thanks to Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words for hosting me on their blog. I love doing interviews because the questions can be quite challenging and sometimes I learn something about myself as a writer in the process!
How much of yourself goes into a character?
With my first books, they dealt with straight characters falling in love, and yes, there was a lot of me in the female characters of The Cloud Seeker and Closer Than Blood. I was finding my feet, writing what I knew. As I gained confidence and knowledge as a writer, I could diversify and make the characters their own people, without the safety blanket of basing them on people IKR. I have to add, none of the Savannah Smythe erotica novels are based on my life experience. It’s amazing how many times I get asked that *insert eye roll here*
Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write? Â Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures?
I don’t really choose a genre, TBH. I write the story, and the genre begins to reveal itself eventually. I would never have sat down to write a science fiction book, but Euphoria turned into one. I think keeping within genre lines can inhibit you as a creative. Write the story, then see where it fits. The caveat to that is making sure you don’t fall into the trap of cultural appropriation. Choosing a certain group of people to write about comes with responsibility. Research is essential so you don’t fall into possibly racist or bigoted stereotyping. And with sci-fi, there are also rules. Whatever world you dream up has to feel real, with details based on scientific fact.
Do you like HFN or HEA? And why?
I am a big fan of the HEA but I won’t reject a book because there isn’t one. In some genres that just isn’t possible. In my books, there is always an HEA or HFN because I just don’t like writing untidy endings or cliffhangers.
If you write contemporary romance, is there such a thing as making a main character too “real”? Â Do you think you can bring too many faults into a character that eventually it becomes too flawed to become a love interest?
I definitely think a character has to have some faults. If they’re perfect, they’re not relatable and could be irritating. If they are too repellent, you’ve lost the reader. If they’re a misogynistic bastard at the beginning and are still one at the end, the author has lost me as a reader. As a writer you have to make the reader fall in love. Just be aware of the genre you want your book to fall into. Romance readers won’t thank you if the hero has halitosis, hairy nostrils or a nose-picking habit. Choose your flaws wisely!
What traits do you find the most interesting in someone? Do you write them into your characters?
I find various traits interesting, but it depends on the story. A strong woman who isn’t a bitch or a ball-breaker, a philanthropist CEO. Everyone on the planet has something, one thing, that makes them unique (apart from DNA.) Hidden talents, a main character revealing their love of the cello, or a former life as a cat burglar, surprises like that are fun. Just don’t give them these things then do doing with them in the story. Have a key scene to showcase their uniqueness and beauty.
In Euphoria, I’ve given Kurt a love of watching ballet, and Tom talks tough but really he’s cotton candy inside. Even Vardam has a skill of getting what they want, using good manners and carefully chosen English.
Have you ever put a story away, thinking it just didn’t work? Â Then years/months/whatever later inspiration struck and you loved it? Â Is there a title we would recognize if that happened?
Closer Than Blood (M/F romantic suspense) was written between 1994 and 2015. The really observant will see the changes in the writing style between the old sections and the new, though I tried not to make it obvious. That book is a patchwork of old, new and a bit blue. Nothing borrowed though!
Ever drunk written a chapter and then read it the next day and still been happy with it? Â Trust me there’s a whole world of us drunk writers dying to know.
I write sober because I rarely drink. I can imagine some interesting results though. Why wouldn’t you be happy with it if it fits the story? If not, at least it’s something to share with readers via a blog post so they can have a laugh out of it.
If you could imagine the best possible place for you to write, where would that be and why?
A mid-town Manhattan apartment with easy access to a deli would be nice. Or a beach hut by the sea, somewhere like Aldeburgh in Suffolk. But really, I have a great writing space here at home, with a window looking out onto green fields. Somewhere with quiet, a comfortable chair and electricity and I’m happy. Oh, and chocolate. And roobois (red bush) tea. Yeah, that will do!
About EUPHORIA …
It might take the arrival of an alien being to remind an isolated man what it means to be human.
With a stressful job, his boss breathing down his neck for profitable results, and an estranged wife and daughter, scientist Kurt Lomax doesn’t think life can get much harder. Until a nonbinary extraterrestrial with an otherworldly beauty, captivating elegance, and a wicked sense of humor inconveniently shows up at his apartment.
Vardam watched the destruction of their own world, and they don’t want to see the same thing happen on Earth. They are lonely, and feelings soon develop between them and the supposedly straight scientist—feelings Kurt reciprocates, much to his confusion.
The arrival of cheery interpreter Tom Soames—whose Goth appearance belies a gentle heart—is like a ray of sunshine in the somber lab. He acts as matchmaker for man and tentacled extraterrestrial, unwittingly instigating a national crisis when the news breaks out.
But will a misunderstanding ruin Kurt and Vardam’s chances for happiness together—along with the hope for peace between humanity and the Var?
About the Author
Jayne Lockwood has always wanted to learn to fly. Spending free time honing her Peter Pan skills on an aerial hoop, she also creates flights of fancy in her books, mingling sex and romance with angst and a healthy dash of dark humor.
Since she was a small child, Jayne has always sympathized with the villain. It all began with Alice Cooper, even though she was banned from listening to his music by her mother. From wanting to sail away with Captain Hook or redeeming the Child Catcher, the antihero has been an enduring fascination ever since.
Jayne is an outwardly respectable member of an English village community. She also is one of the founder members of WROTE podcast, which is dedicated to showcasing LGBTQA authors and their work, and now writes book reviews as well as diverse fiction.
She is also in a sub/Dom relationship with a cat called Keith.
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