Prism Book Alliance would like to thank Josh Lanyon & Catherine Dair for taking the time to talk with us today. There is also a Giveaway, so don’t miss that.
Title: Stranger Things Have Happened
Author: Josh Lanyon & Catherine Dair
Publisher: Self Published
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
PBA: Stranger Things have Happened combines Lanyon’s much loved Adrien English universe with Dair’s awesome artistic ability. Talk to me about how this pairing came to pass.
JL: Catherine had contacted me to show me AE fan art she’d done, and I was blown away. It seemed like synchronicity because I was toying with the idea of putting together an anthology of stories in the AE universe — but written by other authors. I thought it would be fun to add art to that, and that Catherine would be the perfect person to supply a few anchor works. But when I threw the idea out to readers they REALLY did not like it. In fact, I was taken aback by how disturbed and upset so many people were by the idea, so I abandoned it. But I had also been thinking about doing a Choose Your Own Adventure for Adrien, and I realized Catherine would be even more perfect for that particular project. And she was! It was hard to keep from asking her to do more and more pictures I was enjoying her work so much.
Catherine Dair – I read several of Josh’s books, and then tackled the Adrien English series. I cried my eyes out at 2 a.m. because of the storytelling (okay, and the ending because it was so amazing) of “The Dark Tide”; the emotion of it hit me that deeply. I decided I had to do fanart for it. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I didn’t know if artists did fanart for m/m romances or not, but I had this great need to bring that particular scene to life because the writing was so powerful and the moment so vivid in my mind. So paint it I did, found Josh’s email and sent it to him. “Here! I did a thing for you!” I certainly didn’t expect anything to come of it. But Josh liked it! We started emailing and the rest is history.
I love so many authors in the genre – far too many for me to count. But there are a special few for me that do what I refer to as “painting with words” – those authors whose storytelling is so special that it creates amazing imagery in my head as I read. Being an artist obviously means I think pretty visually. Josh is one of those writers for me. His writing was so vivid I sat down for my own amusement and drew two pages of a graphic style novel layout of a scene from “The Dark Tide” even after sending him the original piece of fanart. (I’ll never post it but I share it privately – too spoilery for people who haven’t read the book). I think if I could honestly give up sleep and clone myself, I’d make graphic novels out of most of his books just to make myself happy. You know, just for Josh and myself. 😉
PBA: Josh you are well respected in the genre, if you could make one change to your first published work, what would it be?
JL: That’s an interesting question. The thing about writing is you’re writing what you are and what you know at that moment in time. And from that standpoint, I don’t think you can — or should even try — to go back and rewrite yourself. Which is not to say that I don’t wince through my earlier works. I do. But every artist in the world shows their learning curve when you compare their earlier works with their later works. Whether it’s technique and craft or simply what interests us later in life. there’s a progression in anyone’s art — sometimes up and sometimes down. That’s one of the things so interesting about art.
So I guess that’s not really an answer, but there isn’t one particular change I would make to Fatal Shadows. It is what it is. A tightly written but simplistic who-dunnit. Were I to start writing that series today, it would be utterly different.
PBA: Catherine, how did you get started drawing for m/m genre authors?
CD: My best friend is author Diana Copland and she writes in this genre, so I started with her books (no surprise). Then I asked her, “Who should I read next?” She told me, “Go find Josh Lanyon’s books” so once I started with his there was no turning back. See answer one! We can all thank Diana Copland, because she originally said to me “I think you should throw your artistic hat into this genre” and I replied, “Nah, nobody is going to like my art style.” She earned the “I Told You So Award” for sending me into a career that I am having the time of my life in. I’m buying her a frame for it.
PBA: Josh can you name 3 authors who inspire you and why? Catherine same questions but artists?
JL: Georgette Heyer for witty dialog
Joseph Hansen for tight, terse prose
Mary Renault for subtext
CD: (But I want to answer the author question too! pouts) Okay, three artists. I’d be crazy not to say Paul Richmond. His style is beautiful, his original art and his book covers stunning and he is just a wonderful human being in the time he donates to the You Will Rise Project. I have so much respect for him as a person. I follow a fantastic French artist named Vyrhelle, who has her own graphic novels set in her own original universe, and she gives me inspiration for my own ideas and my own original universe project coming up in a few months. I’d like to be her when I grow up. LC Chase and Lou Harper are my third answer because their book covers are a level of artistry that boggle my mind and teach me something every time I sit ogle their creations. Their covers are incredible.
PBA: Catherine, what is your favorite piece that you have done?
CD: This is a mean question. You’re making me choose between my children. If I could insert “project” for “piece” it would certainly be “Stranger Things Have Happened” for so many reasons. I love working one on one with authors, and Josh is a dream author to do that with. He’s patient, kind and terrific in the “give and take” required to get the project done. Josh made it such an enjoyable experience for me – so much so I was sad when it was over. Plus, I just love Adrien and Jake and to be able to create multiple illustrations of them together was a dream job. I feel so blessed that he gave me this opportunity.
If you made me pick ONE character or art piece not Adrien and Jake, then it would be Angel Martinez’s “Romenel” and it would be a tie for the “Voyage into Twilight” cover I painted that he appeared on, or the current one where he is badass and swinging a sword, “Obligations of Blood”. I love painting him.
PBA: Josh Do you ever abandon a draft partly written and just move on? Do you keep a file of plot ideas?
JL: Not very often these days. A friend and I tried to write something together last year. We got a few chapters in and realized it just wasn’t going to happen, so I have my chapters and prologue. I love the concept and I loved my prologue, but I don’t really know what to do with it.
But when I first started writing I used to abandon more projects than I finished, so I have files and files of three to seven chapters of perfectly good stories that I just lost interest in. Once in a while I cannibalize.
PBA: If there world were going to end tomorrow, how would you spend your last night on earth?
JL: Wishing I had taken more time off. 😀 I’d like to come up with some grand, romantic final scenario, but really I think I would lie down in the cool grass and stare up at the stars for as long as possible.
CD: Last night on earth? With my family flying our kites somewhere on a beach as the sun goes down, then making smores around a campfire looking at the stars and contemplating the cosmos.
PBA: Rapid Fire Time
- PBA: Underwear and socks: folded in the drawer or tossed?
- JL: Folder
- CD: Folded, then tossed into the drawer.
- PBA: Coke or Pepsi?
- JL: Coke
- CD: I…can’t tell the difference so it doesn’t matter. Don’t judge me.
- PBA: Train or Plane?
- JL: Plane
- CD: Train, so I can see the countryside. Sometimes it’s about the journey as much as it is the destination.
- PBA: Morning or night?
- JL: Morning
- CD: Night. Total nightowl here.
- PBA: Fire or Ice?
- JL: Fire
- CD: Fire. I hate being cold. Why am I living in Seattle again?
- PBA: Love Story or Thriller?
- JL: Thriller
- CD: A love story that is a thriller makes me very happy.
- PBA: Porsche or Prius?
- JL: Porsche
- CD: Prius. Who wants the repair bills on a Porsche?
- PBA: Alone or At a Party?
- JL: Alone
- CD: Party for an hour then I’m going home to my book.
PBA: What is next, what are you working on?
JL: I’m just finishing up the first round of edits on Fair Play for Carina Press. As soon as that’s out of the way, I’ll be back to working on The Boy With The Painful Tattoo. Which I’m really looking forward to, by the way. Just the thought of Kit always makes me smile.
CD: I’m finishing a cover for Angel Martinez, then I have projects upcoming with Jordan L. Hawk, Brandon Witt and Diana Copland, plus a project that should be posting soon with SE Jakes. When I’m not working on other peoples’ commissions, I am inside my head with my original project which I plan to roll up my sleeves and get started on this fall and designing things for my webshop. No, I don’t sleep.
PBA: How can readers find you on the web?
CD: Because I am lame, I have not created a website yet. But my art can be seen on my Tumblr account, which is http://catherine-dair.tumblr.com/. I’m on Facebook and Twitter under this name. I also have a Redbubble store with original art designs and that can be found here: http://www.redbubble.com/people/catherinedair
PBA: Bonus Question – Cath – any chance we can get a Prism Pony? Just had to ask 😉
CD: Of course you can have a Prism pony! I can see it now. It needs your hair, er mane, Brandilyn! 😉
WHO KILLED ROBERT HERSEY?
Book store assistant and all around bad boy Robert Hersey has been murdered – and you are the #1 suspect! To clear your name and get your life back, you must figure out who killed your best friend and first love.
What happens next in the story all depends on the choices YOU make. How will the story end? It’s all up to YOU. And the best part is you can keep reading and choosing until you’ve written your perfect ending.
About the Author & Artist:
A distinct voice in gay fiction, multi-award-winning author JOSH LANYON has been writing gay mystery, adventure and romance for over a decade. In addition to numerous short stories, novellas, and novels, Josh is the author of the critically acclaimed Adrien English series, including The Hell You Say, winner of the 2006 USABookNews awards for GLBT Fiction. Josh is an Eppie Award winner and a three-time Lambda Literary Award finalist.
I like drawing pretty men, beautiful women and fanciful creatures and work as a freelance illustrator primarily in the gay romance genre. I am a huge supporter of LGBT rights.
When I’m not working for other people I produce my own original art.
“I doodle all the time.”
Josh Lanyon & Catherine Dair have kindly offered a Pride Bunny t-shirt and a Full Color print copy of the book to 1 lucky commenter.
Contest will end 5 days from original posting date (or as stated on the Rafflecopter) at 8pm CDT. Must be 18 or older to enter, void where prohibited.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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