Author Spotlight

Recently, a very talented author took time out of her busy day to sit down and answer a few questions about herself for us here at JR.  So, without further delay, let’s hear from the talented...

Ally Blue

Have you always known that you wanted to be a writer?
I never realized it until recently, but yeah, I guess I did. When I was little, I used to make illustrated books out of notebook paper, usually involving the fictional adventures of my sister. That HAS to be some sort of foreshadowing LOL

I read that you are also a nurse. How do you find time to write?
I multi-task a LOT. Quiet time to myself is pretty rare, so I tend to write while doing other things. Specifically, I do a lot of writing during the nightly Family TV Time. I perfected working while watching TV during high school <g> I try to get some writing done in the mornings before work, but that doesn't always work out.

Do you have a scheduled time daily that you write or do you just write when the mood strikes?
I probably should have a scheduled time, but I don't. I know, I'm WAY too unorganized LOL. My laptop goes everywhere with me - seriously, y'all, EVERYwhere - so I can write anywhere and anytime, if I have an extra few minutes.

Tell us about Ally. What makes you…you?
Oh, man. Let's see. I've been trying to scare myself ever since I bought my first book of ghost stories when I was ten. I have an iTunes playlist for every book. I love Monty Python marathons, thrift store shopping, and live music shows in dark, loud, grimy little clubs. I believe in love, acceptance, and having as much fun as humanly possible while you still can. Obviously, writing is a huge part of who I am. I'm constantly seeing potential stories all over the place. I live for the day when I can quit the Evil Day Job and support my wonderful family solely on the proceeds of angsty gay smut!

Your books are very sexy male/male romances; what made you choose this genre?
Thank you very much :D

I never actually considered any other genre, to be honest. The few times I've tried writing male/female, I've ended up getting bored. I can read it just fine, I just can't write it LOL. The dynamics of the male/male romantic relationship are completely different, and I find that fascinating. 

How do you find a balance between your family, writing, and nursing?
Er, well, I'm not sure I do, to tell you the truth O_O I try, sure, but I'm the most unorganized person on the planet, and it's a daily  struggle to make all the pieces of my life fit together in anything like a coherent form.

What are your favorite foods, movies, music, books, and television?
LOL Prepare for a loooong answer <g>

Favorite foods: popcorn, cucumbers in vinegar, Fritos, hummus, spinach quesadillas

Favorite movies: Pan's Labyrinth, Lord of the Rings, Raising Arizona, Brokeback Mountain (big surprise, I know LOL), Monty Python and the Holy Grail, The Princess Bride, too many others to list

Favorite TV shows: Ghost Hunters, which inspired the Bay City Paranormal Investigations series; Man Vs Wild, because Bear Grylls is hot AND insane; Firefly, sadly cancelled; Arrested Development, also sadly cancelled; Six Feet Under... hm, I'm sensing a pattern here...

Favorite books: okay, there are a zillion at least, but here's a selection. Books of Blood by Clive Barker (all three, but especially the second one which contains my favorite short story, "Jacqueline Ess: Her Will and Testament"), Boy's Life by Robert R. McCammon, Stranger In A Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein, The Syndicate series by Jules Jones and Alex Woolgrave, the Harry Potter series, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series (except Mostly Harmless, which was mostly not funny), everything by H.P. Lovecraft

Favorite music: in the interest of time and space, I will attempt to keep this part short. But it's hard, because music is a huge, important thing to me. My first true love, and still all-time favorite, is Radiohead. I love their music (and, in fact, the guys themselves) in a freakishly intense and not entirely appropriate way. Very close second in my musical affections is Patrick Wolf, he of the luscious voice, eye-crossing fashion sense and unicorn tattoo. I find his music to be rich and evocative, and his lyrics wonderfully insightful. Other bands/musicians I love: The Libertines (defunct, so sad), Beck, Larrikin Love, Muse, Franz Ferdinand, Massive Attack, Rufus Wainwright, Placebo, The Arcade Fire

Other favorites things: storms on the ocean, tattoos, toe rings, indie-boys in low-rider jeans and silver jewelry, and the smell of sweaty man-bits. Yummy <g>

What is the perfect writing environment for you? Do you prefer quiet in an office setting or can you write anywhere?
Solitude is good, preferably someplace where I can put on my headphones and play some tunes while I write. But, that's not exactly a common thing for me, so I have learned to write anyplace. If I couldn't, y'all wouldn't have aaaaall these books by me :D

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
Number one - and you've all heard this before - is keep writing. Write at least a little bit every day. Also, find yourself a good critique group, with people who will be honest with you. It's always wonderful to hear how great your work is, but you can't hone your craft unless you also learn what needs to be fixed in your work, and how to fix it. A good critique group is invaluable for that.

Do you have a favorite character that you have written and why are they your favorite?
Boy, that's tough. I love all my boys! I guess if I had to pick one, it would probably be Dean Delapore from the Bay City Paranormal Investigations series. He's such a flirt, so upbeat and sexy and such a sweet guy! He's an interesting man, and he's easy to talk to. I love a talkative character, it makes my job so much easier LOL

How do you celebrate after meeting a deadline?
Read something else besides my own book! By the time I get done with a book, I'm sick to death of looking at it. I tend to hang out online and overdose on Harry/Draco fanfic after sending another manuscript off to the editor <g>

How do you promote your books?
Haphazardly, sad to say. I have a Yahoo group, groups.yahoo.com/group/loveisblue/, and I participate in loop chats on other groups when I can. I also belong to Manloveromance, a co-op of male/male romance authors. We all contribute to things like print ads in Men magazine, online ads in places like Out.com, and promo at conventions. I have a website, of course, and participate in a couple of different blogs. I attended RT and Book Expo America this year, which was SO fun because I got to meet soooo many people! 

Do you enjoy hearing from your readers and how can they contact you?
I LOVE hearing from readers! Anyone who wants to contact me can email me. :D

How do you spend your free time?
What is this "free time" you speak of? LOL. Seriously, whenever I find some of that rare commodity of Free Time, I tend to spend it just hanging out with my family and/or friends.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
Just some cool news <g> My latest release, Fireflies, has been chosen as the August pick for All Romance Ebooks' online bookclub! Check out the details here:

Also, I will be attending this year's Dragon*Con. I'll be sitting on a panel of published writers, talking about making the leap from fanfic to published author. Check out the schedule here:

Our panel is Friday afternoon. After that, it's a weekend of fangirling on the Ghost Hunters and Mythbusters, woo-hoo!

And last but not least, come visit me on my website, blogs, and Yahoo group!!

 

 

 

 

 

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