Tuesday 6 November 2012

Guest Author Interview - Xavier Edwards

Today we welcome Xavier Edwards to the guest author interview, read what he has to say below:

Please introduce yourself, who are you and what do you do?
I hail from the wide brown land down under and have been writing in one form or another pretty much since I learned to write. Growing up in the country I found a refuge in books and absorbed all sorts of genres and writing styles. I was raised in a tight-knit family with three sisters and so grew up having to understand the female mind. It was essential when trying to survive living with them when they were all teenagers.

Following secondary school, I joined the Royal Australian Air Force, serving with honour as active military aircrew, attended university, met my wife, got married, and started my own family. It was while in a ground posting that I rediscovered my love of writing and nurtured it in private for a few years before being encouraged that other people would enjoy reading what I was writing.

It took a couple more years to build up the courage to actually publish, but here I am. I’ve found a niche for my writing style in erotica and erotic romance and will probably spend the next few years writing within the genre and sub-genres. I’m currently writing a lot of short stories but am starting to branch out into novellas and longer.

I’m currently living with my wife, three daughters, two cats, and fish in not-quite-rural Australia.

What first inspired you to start writing?
My wife, and being away from her.

When I was looking around at the options for getting an agent and a publisher, I couldn’t really find a lot that were suitable to my needs at the time. One of the biggest things I realised I needed was to have a portfolio of works and the only way to do that was to self-pub. Since then, using my business background, I have been quite happy to self-pub and interact with readers on a one-to-one level. I haven’t ruled out an agent or a publisher in the future, but for now things are fine. Some of my longer works might end up being routed through a major publisher, but that’s a future decision.

You principally write erotica, what drew you to this?
It came about quite accidentally. I was travelling with work quite a lot and spending a lot more time away from my wife than I really wanted to. Quite naturally certain urges were coming up with nothing to do about them. Half-jokingly my wife suggested I write them down. Taking her at her word, I did. I found soon that she was enjoying the stories and so wrote more and more. It took some time to then build the courage necessary to get published, especially in an area which had such a personal start.

Getting published and receiving fan mail / emails keeps me going. To know I have such a strong effect on readers across the globe is very gratifying and helps motivate me to write when I’m struggling with plots and characters.

Are you ever tempted to dip into other genres?
I am tempted to do so but at the moment I have quite a backlog of erotica tales to clear before I can think of moving genres. A secondary reason for starting out in erotica was that I thought the other genres I was interested in writing for were already swamped. I guess I got a bit of a surprise once I started in erotica.

If you could write the biography for anybody, who would it be?
If it meant that I got to find out more about them while doing so, it would have to be some of my family from a couple of generations back. From brother soldiers that died one day apart on the same battlefield to pioneers in the early settlement of Australia and families on the move through the chaos of WWII continental Europe.

Even though I'm a direct descendent, many of these stories have never been passed down through the family and it is the little snippets gathered over time that leave me wondering how they managed to survive or what led them to where they were when major life events took place.

What advice would you give new and aspiring authors? 
Do write
Don’t listen to the naysayers
Do publish
Do develop a thick skin and be able to take criticism.

What are you working on at the moment?
I have several short stories that are on the go at any one time. When I wrote this reply to the question I had a Halloween PNRe in the middle of the editing process, a straight erotica novella moving into the proof-reading stage, and another one just in the last stages of being published (within the next five days). On the drafting table are probably another half-dozen to dozen stories in various stages of readiness. All are either erotica shorts or erotic novellas. A couple of already published shorts are being prepared for conversion into novella or novel length based on reader feedback.

When the stories are short I try to work on a fortnightly production basis and, with the publishing pipeline being around 6 weeks, that means that there are always stories going in and coming out.

Tell us about your latest work and how we can find out more.
Depending on when this entry is put up, it could be any one of three titles. The first is "The Barista's Heart". The second is "The Nymph's Muse", and the third "In Human Form".

"The Barista's Heart" is a touching erotic tale of unexpected love blossoming in a coffee shop. It's not afraid of explicitness where appropriate, but it's all part of the story that entwines the two main characters.

"The Nymph's Muse" tells the story of an impoverished artist who's responsible for the near-death of a complete stranger. Feeling guilty about what's happened, she invites him into her life to help with the healing process and assuage her guilt. Struggling with her art, the Nymph finds her Muse.

"In Human Form" is a PNRe short in time for Halloween. A god and goddess are cast to Earth and trapped in stone, save for one night a year - All Hallow's Eve. They take this opportunity to be with each other physically, but there's a hidden threat to their ongoing existence that's solved in an interesting way.

Although an indie self-pub, my titles are available on Amazon, iTunes, Smashwords, Kobo, Google, All Romance Erotica, and are appearing via aggregation with some other major booksellers.

I can be found on a range of popular ebook forums, with a fairly strong presence on GoodReads. I also have my site, at http://www.xavieredwards.com.

Thanks to Xavier for sharing his thoughts with us, on Friday Kathy Petrakis is in the hot seat.

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