I’m back with another interview. This time I’ll be talking to Phoenix Hell, who is going to share with us some of the ups and downs of the writing life. Putting yourself in the public’s eye can be a wonderful, exhilarating experience, but it has its downsides too, so one question I always have is this: Do you think writers need loads of confidence or a big ego to make it in this business?
Confidence, because reviews will tear you up.
Yeah… That. They will tear you up. I guess we keep at it because we have something important enough to say we’re willing to go through a lot of pain to get it out there. I think, as writers, we can agree that the written word is a powerful thing. Stories can change the world. Is there an author that you think has actually harmed people with their writing?
Yes. Not naming names but when you write about BDSM and then brag that you didn’t research, it makes that community look bad. Especially when someone wants to act out the scenes.
Absolutely. There are so many tropes within romance that there’s something for everybody to write and read about. No matter how popular a trope or particular plotline is, every writer can leave it alone and write a story they know about or have recourse to research. Obviously, women writers can’t experience man on man sex, so research really matters. And if you’re not comfortable writing it—don’t. Romance spans the gamut from fade-to-black to triple XXX. There is a reader for every book. And while we’re on the subject, tell me—if you write erotic/explicit scenes, what is the most difficult part of that process for you?
I hate writing them because usually it’s hard to get started.
For some people, explicit romance, especially in gay romance, can carry a certain amount of baggage with it in the real world, and for this reason, as well as others, some people use a pen name. I am one of those people, and I sometimes think of Kayleigh Sky—far more feminine than I am—as my alter ego, but I’m also open with my real life name. I use my logo, which is a heart, as my avatar. As a writer, what would you choose—avatar, famous person, cartoon character—to represent you?
Since my pen name is Phoenix, I use the bird itself.
The phoenix has many lives as it rises from the ashes again and again. If you could return as somebody else for a day, who would you like to be and why?
President, so that I could issue universal health care and bring about world peace.
I wish we had a president who thought along those lines. But lest I go off about the one we do have, let me move onto a less explosive subject. Do you need to know your characters’ names before you start writing?
Do they come to you magically, from people you know, from baby name books or sites, or some other method?
After finding out what type of being they are, I usually look for names and their meanings.
Me too. Sometimes if I have trouble getting a story going, it’s because I’m not using the right names, and I like the names to mean something. I also like to know their occupations. Even if I don’t really use it, knowing what they do, informs who they are. There are so many things that go into writing a story that it can be really exhausting sometimes. If for some reason you didn’t or couldn’t write, what else would you do?
Actually, I’m a paralegal, so that; but physically I’m unable to.
Then you need to be doubly strong because to build a world and sustain it for months takes a lot of willpower, and when you’re done, you offer your hard-earned, finished product to the world, and that can be a painful process, but it’s inevitable. There isn’t a book out there that suits everybody. Do you read your reviews?
What are your toughest scenes to write and is there a particular scene that was the hardest of all?
I abhor sex scenes. Otherwise the words usually just flow.
So, other than sex scenes, it sounds like you don’t hit too many roadblocks when you’re writing, which is wonderful. I don’t know if it’s ever applied to you, but do you believe in writer’s block?
This is often a hot button topic on social media, so I’d love to know what your opinion of women writing in the M/M—gay romance genre is.
I have a lot of female friends that write it. Some are better than me.
What do you wish you knew about the M/M—gay romance genre before you published your first book?
How tough the reviews can be and not take them to heart.
Easier said than done, but that would be a great bit of advice for up and coming writers in the genre. What else would you like to tell a newbie writer?
Write what you know. If you love mythology incorporate it into your work. Same with vampires, and other creatures.
Do you write alone or in public?
At home either in my room or in the family room with music in my ears.
Who are your writing companions? Dogs or cats?
Cats! I’m all about my cats, lol. It’s important to have friends with us.
Thank you, Phoenix Hell, for stopping by. I had a great time.
Keep reading, everybody, because I have more information for you about Phoenix and his book Hellagor’s Flame, with links to follow him, or better yet—to buy the book!
See you next time!
Meet Hellagor, he’s a Sprite-Witch hybrid plus he’s a Prince like his fathers’. His grandmother is Queen of the Sprites. He had told his friends that he was crushing on a porn star. They split the secret to all forms of social media.
Meet Flame Nature: Porn Star Extraordinaire. He learns about Hellagor’s crush. After being kidnapped by a group of rogue soldiers, found by an irritated Hellagor and then healed by a Goddess, the Sprite hybrid accidentally unleashes his powers and those of his friends that came to rescue Flame after unleashing his fury on the rogue soldiers.
Can the porn stars grasp what has happened to them? Will Flame accept Hellagor as a lover? Will they ever end up happily ever after?
Book one in the Supernatural Porn Stars series
Warning: Contains scenes of mild Gay Lovin, Magic Powers, M-Preg, Demi Gods and Angels
Genre: Alternative (M/M; F/F), Paranormal, Shape-shifter/Witch, Angels, Gods
Length: 53, 432
About the author:
Who Am I?
Well I’m a son, grandson, best friend, brother, uncle; a gray witch, and Oracle.
One who fights invisible illnesses and mental ones.
I’m shy at first but when you get to know me I’m fun and loving.
I have always loved the paranormal and since reading the gay romance scene, I wanted to be the next Anne Rice or Sherrilyn Kenyon with a twist.
So I’m currently writing gay romance with either a Paranormal spin or a supernatural twist.
When I’m not writing, I am reading books by my favorite authors, drinking sweet tea and just trying to relax.
Also by Phoenix Hell
Work in the anthology authors off the shelf
The Dark side of Witch
A Demonic Christmas (Book 1 of the Zodiac Pack)
Where to find the author
Finding the book