Interview with A. Lusch on Writing, Publishing + Hot Men
Most of you know I like a little romance and I don’t care if it comes in the form of M/M or M/F. As long as I like the story and the steam level, I go push that little buy button as fast as at you can say 1-click! I also like to track down authors and interview them for this blog!
I met Algenon Lusch (A. Lusch on his covers) a while back on a Facebook group. He asked me to review his first book, The Man Plan, and I liked it so much that I bought book no. 2, Friends and Frenchmen the moment I reached “the End” on the first one.
The 52 First Dates series is based on true stories, so of course it piqued my even more! So I had a nice, long, juicy chat with Algenon Lusch over Facebook and this is the result, smiley faces and groupie moments included! Enjoy!
Alina Popescu: *Big Fangirl moment* Thank you for agreeing to have a chat with me 🙂
Algenon Lusch: I’m happy to chat. Always up for a gossip!
Alina Popescu: Ha, good thing I have my coffee close by, that always goes great with gossip! First, let’s talk about you and writing. When did you start?
Algenon Lusch: I’m fairly new to the M/M genre. I’d wanted to write this story for ages – it’s based on truth – but I only actually started to put the words to paper, aka computer screen, a few months ago.
Alina Popescu: Then you’re quite fast! There are two books in the series that have already been published. How much of this is based on a true story? I am going for juicy details, but I can live with percentages 😀
Algenon Lusch: I’d say 70/80% is true! I did do the 52 First Dates challenge and most of the guys in the books are real, though for obvious reasons, I’ve had to change their names. Not all the circumstances in the books happened in the same chronological order, but I’m staying as honest as possible. 😀
I love men; what can I say, I’ve been lucky enough to date a few hotties. 😛
Alina Popescu: Lucky for us m/m readers! I think it’s pretty brave to use that much of your own experiences in a book. Did you ever think it might be too risky? I mean pissed off hotties might not be as appealing 😛
Algenon Lusch: Lol
Pissed off hotties….smouldering, simmering hotties? I think they just got hotter!
I wasn’t too worried. I have changed their names and some circumstances. I was very honest with them all too, so there shouldn’t really be any major eye-openers should any of them find themselves reading a M/M romance and see themselves from the pages.
Alina Popescu: Silly me, I forgot the potential of all that angry sex 😀
Algenon Lusch: Exactly.
Alina Popescu: Share a bit about your main character David, how would you describe him to someone who’s not read the series yet?
Algenon Lusch: David’s a typical bachelor, and very like me. He’s in his early 30s, been around the block a time or two and knows the lay of the land. He’s done the drunken, one-night 20s, understands what he wants from life and is now looking to settle down.
So he’s looking for a husband….but like many, he loves men, has an eye for a hottie, and often gets led by lust! 😛
He has that downfall too of hoping he can turn a passionate one-nighter into something more when, in reality, it hardly ever works.
Alina Popescu: Don’t we all? Lust is hard to disregard. Attraction is a big requirement for us all, I think that downfall is pretty common. Did you intend to make David a character that everyone finds it easy to relate to or was that just an added benefit?
Algenon Lusch: You found him relate-able? Hurrah! I didn’t set out with that intention if I’m honest. I suppose that as I’m writing from real experience, David is a lot like me. With real experience and feelings behind a character, I think it’s probably easier to connect with other people.
Alina Popescu: Yes, I did! Especially in book 2. I also found his experiences reminded me of similar ones friends have shared with me. David seems pretty confident and hopeful in books 1 and 2. Will we see a darker state of mind in the next installments?
Algenon Lusch: That’s great! I wanted to make the books about friendship as much as hot sex, so you’ll see lots of M/M action but some caring friendships too.
Oh, yes, it’ll get darker and more desperate. In a parallel of real life, 52 Dates started off extremely well but it quickly became harder as emotions and feelings started to crop up which weren’t always reciprocated.
Alina Popescu: OK, i’ll make sure I’m well stocked on tissues. Speaking of future installments, when is book 3 due and how many will there be in this series?
Algenon Lusch: I’m aiming for Book 3 to be out in the New Year. They’re fun to write – a bit nostalgic too – so I’m keen to further David’s story. I’m not entirely sure how many books there’ll be. Don’t worry; there’s definitely WON’T be 52 (one for each date). So there’s a tease right there….if David doesn’t complete the challenge, what’s going to happen instead? 😉
Alina Popescu: Aww, that’s not fair! Don’t do that to extremely curious people! 😀 Do you plan on keeping the same schedule, a fresh book every few months?
Algenon Lusch: Yes. At the moment I’m saying a new book every couple of months, but depending on my schedule, it’d be great to reduce this a little too. I don’t want to keep myself, or readers, hanging on too long.
Alina Popescu: *Does a happy dance* I totally agree, don’t keep me… uh, I mean us… hanging 😀
Algenon Lusch: Lol. I wouldn’t dare, Alina. 😛
Alina Popescu: Writing the stories was fun, as you said. But we all know self-publishing is not the easiest route ever. Actually, everyone who’s done it says you need to be crazy to do it. How was it for you?
Algenon Lusch: I actually found it relatively easy. I have friends who’ve been in the self-pub industry for a while and I took a while to read up on things. Going to a publisher with a selection of short stories just wasn’t going to work, so this was really my only option.
Self publishing has been made so easy these days. I know many trad authors who have to do so much work themselves, it barely makes that route any easier. This way I can write what I want, include lots of hot men and follow a publishing schedule I choose. I love being able to put my own work out there for people to read. I’m totally behind self publishing.
Alina Popescu: That is true, all authors have to do a lot of work, other than the actual writing. But there still is a certain image associated with self publishing, and that’s not too pretty. How do you handle that?
Algenon Lusch: You know? I just take it one day at a time. I KNOW some people won’t even read self-published work, but there are a hell of a lot of people who do. You only have to look at the bestsellers lists to see that. Haters are always going to hate. If I’m honest, I have found people, especially in the self-pub M/M market, to be so friendly and helpful, that I’m glad I chose this route.
Alina Popescu: That’s true, they are very helpful. And we only have to think of Double Full by Kindle Alexander and Try by Ella Frank for quick references of M/M best selling success. Speaking of M/M authors, do you read a lot in this genre? And do you have favorites?
Algenon Lusch: I haven’t read a huge amount in this genre – mostly because I’ve lived it! lol! Well…okay, perhaps I haven’t had a muscled cowboy, but hey, I’m still young-ish.
Of books I have read, I really rate Kindle Alexander and Susan Mac Nicol’s work. I love how they mix the M/M steam in with intense and gripping stories.
Alina Popescu: I love them both. 😀 But because I like playing with hornet nests and sticks… any comments on the big male/female writer divide in the m/m space? 😀 Oh, and if you want a cowboy, I say go for Kitt from Texas Pride. I would, but lack the right parts 😛
Algenon Lusch: Is there a divide? Lol…there’s my comment. As I said, I’m pretty new to this genre. I know a lot of women write M/M, so it was with a certain amount of trepidation that I launched my own work. After all – would real experience of the gay scene affect the scenarios, the pick-ups, the romance? I’m not sure. But I think there’s a place for both if everyone backs each other up.
Kitt, huh? Time for me to Google! 😛
Alina Popescu: I’ve seen a lot of opinions about gay romance written by women being unrealistic. On the other hand, there are gay men saying that’s not true. But there is a bit of dreamy glow to all romance stories, don’t you think?
*nods enthusiastically* yeah, you google him! Just wait till you see the cover 😛
Algenon Lusch: Yeah, I can see why that is. I think some gay authors might think that the fiction written by women is simply M/F with a gender swap. But I don’t think that’s necessarily true. You’ll note that my books have a lot of hooking up via gay apps because that’s what happens these days. That’s not really the case in fiction written by women, but what the hell, it’s often still a great love story!
Alina Popescu: True, I know the gay apps actually play a big part these days. Maybe that’s why I found David’s story so easy to connect with. But I do tend to agree with your opinion! A great love story is a great love story.
Speaking of those, wanna give us the juicy details of your affair with writing? What’s your writing process?
Algenon Lusch: Ha, sit down, start writing and then sit back and think of gorgeous men? Well, it’s sort of like that. The writing process is made MUCH easier because it’s truth based. Most of the time, once I’m off (with a vital cup of tea at my side) the scenes progress very easily. I might get hot and flustered now and then, but that’s an important part of getting ‘those’ scenes right. 😛
Alina Popescu: Yes, we wouldn’t want you to mess up those scenes! 😛
Do you listen to music when you write? If so, do you have a dedicated playlist?
Algenon Lusch: Sometimes a mess is good…… *smiles naughtily*
Alina Popescu: *nods knowingly* yes, it is, very good 😛
Algenon Lusch: Yeah, I really feel it helps get me in the mood. More often that not I’ll listen to either gaydio or another dance station. It helps me get into the mood of London’s gay scene and my past. It’s odd; if I’m writing other fiction, I HAVE to listen to soundtracks for ambient noise. For M/M, I need dances tunes and songs!
Alina Popescu: Well, I think those tunes suit M/M!
Before we get to the real fun and gossipy part, let’s be responsible! Where can we find your books?
Algenon Lusch: Aha! That’s the big question. LOL. Both ‘The Man PLAN’ and ‘Friends and FRENCHMEN’ are on Amazon, Smashwords and All Romance eBooks. I distribute via Smashwords so they should be on Kobo and B&N too, though it can take a while for new titles to be uploaded.
Alina Popescu: Then they should also make it to iTunes and Sony’s bookstore! What about you? Let’s pimp you, share all your links
Algenon Lusch: Twitter – https://twitter.com/AlgenonLusch
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AlgenonLusch
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7191612.A_Lusch
These should be the important ones 🙂
Alina Popescu: Perfect, thanks! Now, sweet mother of gossip, get ready 😀
What inspired your pen name?
Algenon Lusch: Ha! You know, when Downton Abbey first started, my friends and I all started calling each other posh names and texting each other in silly ‘posh’ talk. So, I was named Algenon! Also, back in the day, I was a member of Second Life where my surname was Lusch. I combined the two for a rather silly yet eccentrically English name!
Alina Popescu: That’s so cool! I should really get with the program and watch that series!
Classic book everyone says is a masterpiece but you couldn’t finish?
Algenon Lusch: Any Jane Austen. I love the woman’s stories, SOME of the adaptations have been amazing, but the books are just such hard work that I’ve never managed to complete one. 😐
Alina Popescu: I did watch all the movies. Finished a couple of the books 😛
Sweet or savory?
Algenon Lusch: Both?! I’m a greedy pig. Hmmm, sweet.
Alina Popescu: You can choose both, that’s ok! We’ve all done it at one point 😀
Biggest actor crush?
Algenon Lusch: There is one guy who I fell for and have a huge fondness for, and that’s Heath Ledger. When I saw 10 Things I Hate About You – that paintball scene where they first kiss. Oh my god. He’s so freaking gorgeous. I’m still sad about his death to this day.
Alina Popescu: Yeah, I still wanna cry over Bruce Lee being dead… He was the first man I wanted to marry, y’know? So I feel your pain.
Other celebrities you crushed on?
Algenon Lusch: You know, I don’t really have celebrity crushes. It’s more about the character they’re playing. For instance; Kal Drogo from Game of Thrones, the Walking Dead’s Glen
It’s all about the character, the moment…the sexual tension! ha!
Alina Popescu: True, that happens a lot!
Who would play David in the movie version? I’ll tell you who I’d choose afterward 😉
Algenon Lusch: Hmm, perhaps Charlie Hunnam? He’s pretty fit…and British. How about you? I’m intrigued now!
Alina Popescu: Complicated process! I’d hold an audition for a few guys, Matt Bomer, Chris Hemsworth, Stephen Amell, and Stuart Townsend. Stu is there just because 😀 But I would go with Stephen Amell 😛
Algenon Lusch: ooh, Arrow’s resident lead. Yes, I could cope with that!
Alina Popescu: Arrow and Hung, if anyone doesn’t know who that is 😀
And final fun one: name three things you can’t live without
Algenon Lusch: Tea. Trees. My iPhone!
Alina Popescu: Hmm, I still don’t get tea over coffee, but okay, I forgive you cause you write steamy stories!
A few words for your fans before we part?
Algenon Lusch: Lol. I could never get into coffee as a drink. I love coffee flavoured things though…bizarre, I know
Just that the support of my fans is totally immeasurable, without readers, there wouldn’t be the books. Also….there’s lot of steam and passion to come, so look out for the future books, in particular, Seeing Double!
Alina Popescu: Oh, my, that sounds… I think I need a moment there 😀
Thanks again for chatting with me and… go back to writing! I want that book on my kindle sooner! 😛
Algenon Lusch: Thanks, Alina. I couldn’t be happier to have a chat. I’ll get onto that next book pronto!